The process of habit …
As water wears away stones, and as torrents wash away the soil of the earth; so You destroy the hope of man. – JOB 14:19
In physical nature there is something akin to habit. Flowing water hollows out for itself a channel which grows broader and deeper, and after having ceased to flow for a time, it will resume again the path traced before.
It is never as easy to fold a piece of paper the first time as after, for after the first time it folds naturally. The process of habit runs all through physical nature, and the brain is physical.
When once we understand the bodily machine with which we have to work out what God works in, we find that the body becomes the greatest ally of the spiritual life. The difference between a sentimental Christian and a sanctified saint is just here.
The sanctified saint is one who has disciplined the body into perfect obedience to the dictates of the Spirit of God, consequently the body does with the greatest of ease whatever God wants him or her to do.
The sentimental type of Christian is the sighing, tear-flowing, beginning-over-again Christian who always has to go to prayer meetings, always has to be stirred up, or to be soothed and put in bandages, because he has never formed the habit of obedience to the Spirit of God.
The spiritual life does not grow in spite of the body, but because of the body. “Of the earth, earthy”–is humanity’s glory, not its shame; and it is in the “earth, earthy” that des the full regenerating work of Jesus Christ has its ultimate reach.
Oswald Chambers – Daily Thoughts for Disciples … http://www.christianbook.com/html/devotion/dailythoughtsfordisciples_79.html