Sunday, October 6, 2013

Battle

There are a lot of battles being fought in this season. I’ll be honest; I’m getting weary. Don’t get me wrong, we are gaining ground. We are winning this one, Christian brothers and sisters. But I imagine this is more what a real battle would have felt like: I see us standing with our swords, defending attack after attack, spending days on the battlefield--we carry on, we take ground, but it’s one foot at a time, surrounded by the dead, heavy with the stench of blood and war. Yes, we’re winning, but it’s taking all our strength.

This is battle like Paul describes: not against flesh or people, but against principalities and powers--against darkness (Ephesians 6:12). The line between flesh and spirit is messy; When heavenly swords are clashing, physical relationships come under fire, too. That’s why Paul wrote it out to us--remember, when you’re waging war by being Christian and advancing the Kingdom of Christ, that means you need to be on guard to protect your relationships--because the natural tendency is going to be to battle them, too.

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Friends, we’re in the front lines. You cannot advance the Kingdom of God without conflict.  Every word, every action, every thought either advances the Kingdom of Light or the Kingdom of Darkness. It’s so easy to forget this. Just having a bad day is such a convenient excuse that can easily hide our heavenly reality behind a physical fantasy. But when we believe that lie, we miss out on the benefits of standing in full awareness of our real situation: fully equipped children of God, advancing His Kingdom.

So today I’ve been pondering all the battles. Moral battles. Relational battles. Battles of thought. Battles of boundaries. Battles for physical healing. Leadership battles. Patience battles. Trust battles. Hope battles. Fear battles. So many battles. At least a dozen people I know are in battles of serious magnitude--battles where the temptation to gravely sin or even walk away from Christ is very real.

It was weighing on me heavily. Lord, why aren’t you answering our prayers speedily? Why are these battles still being waged? I was sitting at His feet, writing out my worries, asking for His help. And then this song came on:


“Take a moment to remember, Who God is and who I am. There You go lifting my load again.”

The peace of the Holy Spirit washed over me--a strengthening in spirit similar to what I imagine a refreshing, sweet breeze and a fresh drink of cool water would feel to a soldier in the midst of war.

I felt God, so clearly through this song, come and lift my burdens of worry, fear, and whys.

“No longer am I held by, The yoke of this world. Come upon you the yoke of Jesus, His yoke is easy and His burden is so light.”

God is saying: I’ve got this one. Rest. He’s tapping us out of the battle. Letting us retreat into His presence, even if the only time we have is three minutes to listen to one worship song before we need to swing our swords again. Take His invitation, and keep trusting Him. Tell your souls, and sing it to Jesus, my friends:

“Your love carries, Your love carries me.
Out of valleys and the darkest places.”

His peace doesn't mean I’m instantly not weary any more. But to know He is right here, He’s lifting my load--it’s just enough hope to keep on standing.


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