Know Your Enemy

For we wrestle not against flesh and blood, but against principalities, against powers, against the rulers of the darkness of this world, against spiritual wickedness in high places.” -Ephesians 6:12 KJV

Anybody remember what the Maginot Line was? It was a series of fortresses that France built after World War I in order to defend themselves against Germany. It was only on the border with Germany. However, when World War II broke out, the Germans invaded France through Belgium and the Netherlands, conquered France and defeated the Maginot Line from inside France itself! Why this history lesson? Because the Christian is at war. Whether they like it or not, we are soldiers in an epic battle with a powerful, cunning enemy, who has invaded our very bodies and minds, and has an ally within ourselves! Who is this enemy and his ally? The enemy is one we all know about. The enemy is Satan. The ally is our own sinful nature.

Here is how most spiritual battles play out: Most people, including Christians, think it is someone who is sinning differently than them, point their fingers at that person, and say: “THIS GUY is the enemy!” They mount bulwarks and laws against that person, paying no attention to the fact that they have a sinful nature too, and they are defeated, not by that “enemy,” but by that ally within themselves, who is operating under the distraction the different sinner provides. Trouble is, that is not fighting the enemy; that is distracting from the enemy. The enemy is Satan, who seeks to steal, kill and destroy; it is not the different sinner. Satan and the sinful nature within ourselves brings us down, but only if we let them. We have a true ally who can come live within us to fight our battles for us.

“Why do you look at the speck of sawdust in your brother’s eye and pay no attention to the plank in your own eye? How can you say to your brother, ‘Let me take the speck out of your eye,’ when all the time there is a plank in your own eye? You hypocrite, first take the plank out of your own eye, and then you will see clearly to remove the speck from your brother’s eye.” –Matthew 7: 3-5 NIV

Now that we got who the enemy and their ally is, how do we fight them? There are several ways. One is through study and obedience to the Word of God, the Bible. That will strengthen you against Satan and sin, so you can fight properly. How can a soldier fight without proper instruction and training in their weapons? So it is with you. The Bible, prayer and belief are your weapons; use them. In prayer and belief, refer all complaints and temptations to the Lord. The Lord will fight your battles for you. It is His job to do the heavy lifting and repairs to your life and the person(s) your pray for. Simply ask, and keep asking, and the Lord will give you the answer.

So, where does this leave the “different sinner” in the Lord’s eyes? The “different sinner” is still a sinner. They are hostages to Satan and the sinful nature, just like you. Your task is to minister to them; that is, to tell the sinner that there is a way out of the pit, and it is through accepting Christ as your Savior. So, go and tell the sinner the way out of sin!

Know your enemy, know your ally, and you can be on the winning side.

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Getting Right With God

keep-calm-it-is-time-to-get-right-with-godSometimes one has to wonder whether their blog is more positive or more negative. Strangely, people tend to remember the more negative posts – the rant-filled ones about social injustices. Being a woman hailing from Kentucky with weight issues and autism, plus an ally to other causes, one tends to see a lot to rant about. Trouble is, it can wear on your well-being. I’m not always raging –  far from it. When I see an injustice, I will call it out. With that in mind, my life has been just peachy lately. I owe it all to getting right with God this year.

I have been blessed before – with a lovely apartment that has washer and dryer hookups, furniture, decorations, clothes, plenty of food and even a little dog – but the blessings have been coming back this particular year with increasing frequency.

It started with a goal of reading the Bible daily. It was not easy, and at times it still feels like a long time. The truth is, in spite of my wants, the Bible has become an interesting love letter from God to his people. As an account of the people of God, I am in my Old Testament history section. Eventually (spoiler alert!) Jesus will come on the scene and complete the covenant. I have bragged about going through the Bible ten times, but I remember very little unless it’s one of my favorite sections, unfortunately. I can’t exactly brag about my love for God, but I can certainly brag about God’s love for me. The Bible will certainly help in the process, because it is the word of God. Besides, if God can relentlessly pursue a nation that squanders itself on various neighboring gods and spirits, thereby being adulterous in that matter, how much more will He pursue someone faithful? And, is not everyone the nation of Israel at various times in their life? Putting their faith in different gods, like money, fame, romance and guns? I myself am guilty of this, too. It is not essential to read the Bible to be saved, but just so you know, don’t you want to know what or who exactly you’re putting your faith in?

I’m working on prayer at this time. Listing my needs and wants, getting the courage to ask, and then letting it go – that is my current battle. We recently saw the movie “War Room,” which is about the right way to fight – and who you’re fighting against. HINT: It’s not the people who are aggravating you in your life. It’s the devil who seeks to separate and isolate you from your family, friends and joy – not the people. Please, pray for me as I learn to pray in my life.

We are approaching our one-year anniversary at our current church. It is a small, old-fashioned type of church, independent of any association. We are looking for a pastor right now, but we’re praying that God brings us the right man for the job. Fortunately, I believe that will happen soon. We have enjoyed loving, caring fellowship in our church, and hope to keep doing that in the future.

Please keep my mother and me in your prayers as we continue to grow in faith and love.