I really hate the enemy (aka the devil). He's an evil, conniving, ugly, and divisive manipulator of truth and light. He truly comes to stand in the way of all that God has for us. Or, as the apostle John wrote:
The thief comes only to steal and kill and destroy; I have come that they may have life, and have it to the full. John 10:10
Until recent events, I can't with certainty tell you've I've ever experienced the fullness of righteous rage toward this heinous creature. Sure, I've felt the quakes of his attacks but never before have I been so enraged that my physical self wanted to impart such harm to any being, much less one of the spiritual world.
While I always aim to be completely transparent with you, I must admit there are still some wounds that have yet to heal. Wounds the leader of the dark world has left on me, my thoughts, my relationships and my family. I'm okay; I'm fighting and I'm choosing to awaken each morning with praise on my lips and an eagerness to grow in the grace and knowledge so freely offered by our savior, Jesus.
I'm sure you can relate. We all have times in our life where everything seems to be in jeopardy. Where life appears to be falling apart at the seams and no one is there to catch you on the way down. A time in life where something so incredibly evil and ugly came to cast a shadow on what felt was your entire world. Maybe that's what you're walking through right now. Or perhaps you've never experienced this type of pain. My prayer is that you would never have to.
I do want to be explicitly clear here: I do NOT write about the enemy to give him power. He has NO power of me, over you, or over anything in this world. Rather, I write this to share with you what the good Lord has been teaching me in this season, to shed light on how we can stand up against the powers of darkness and to encourage you to press on and lift your hands in praise the Father of Light.
As one of the Psalmist once said:
Though an army besiege me, my heart will not fear; though war break out against me, even then I will be confident. Psalm 27:3 NIV
Looking back on my childhood, I recall my parents referring to a time in their life as "the dark ages". They seemed to almost joke about it. And as an admittedly sheltered teenager, I wasn't able to understand the depth or gravity of what I was hearing. I won't try to assume that I know what they were walking through at the time. What I do know is what I saw. I saw two people fighting. They fought for their marriage, finances, jobs, children and their Savior. Through their darkest of times, I was coming to learn more about what it meant to be a follower of Jesus and what being a follower of Jesus looked like during the 'dark ages'. What did it look like? it looked a whole lot like not giving up in the middle of the fight of a lifetime.
You know who else didn't give up in the middle of a fight?
David. A boy warrior, walked into battle with loaves of bread and stood fearless in the face of his enemy.
It's not enough to be enraged by the enemy. When he wages a war against us, we absolutely must do more than stew in our anger.
• When dissension falls on our families, we fall to our knees.
• When our minds are plagued with thoughts of self-harm, we pick up the strongest weapon in our arsenal: God's Word.
• When our homes are attacked, we rise up and speak a hedge of protection around our home and our loved ones.
• When our marriages are suffering, we stand beside our spouse and say, "NOT TODAY SATAN!" and declare victory for God says what He has joined together nothing can separate.
We have to rise up! We have to fight! Even writing this blog has been an uphill battle. It's been nearly a month of sitting down to write and walking away frustrated that the words weren't flowing as easily as they have before.
Should I expect anything less?
I'm literally defaming the name of the enemy and praising the name of JESUS! Of course this was hard to write. Of course your battles will seem insurmountable!
So, when wars rise up against us, how will we choose to fight? Will we succumb to the fumbling attacks of our ever losing enemy or will we fight from a place of truth, light and surrender?
The fight is inevitable.
We might as well choose to fight from our knees.
- Read Matthew 4:1-11. The enemy does not have a new playbook. He's using the same schemes he used on Jesus, even today!
- Consider your current temptations. Is the devil tempting you similarly to the way he tempted Christ? How can you stand up against the enemy in this season?
- What is God showing you about His goodness and faithfulness, in this season?