Monday, May 31, 2010

The Battle Field

Do you ever feel like you’re walking across a battlefield? That for whatever reason, all of a sudden, a bunch of arrows start shooting your way? I have. I’m not sure why – but it seems as if trouble never comes single handedly. It’s always ready to come at you from multiple directions. It’s like those arrows have just been waiting until they were all in sync so they could shoot off at the same time!

Have you heard the expression – “Satan loves to get you while you’re down?” This is the only reasoning I have for why it seems that multiple arrows are aimed at us all at once instead of one here, and one there, in small doses and spread out sessions which we can handle. No, Satan loves to hit us all at once so we’re vulnerable, stressed, and overwhelmed. So we’re weaker and less immune to his attacks.

The last time I felt like I wandered onto a battlefield, I quickly woke up. It became apparent not that far into it that this was going to be “one of those times” where I’d be hit from multiple directions and that it would challenge my character. After letting all my anger and feelings out, I decided that I was going to call a spade a spade. I wasn’t going to pretend that I wasn’t being challenged or attacked. Instead, I decided to face those arrows head on. For maybe the first time in my life, I decided to “suck it up” and muster all the faith, courage, and strength that God would lend me. I decided that I was going to be proactive and walk through that minefield with the faith that I would come out on the other side. Yes, I might get hurt along the way. Yes, I might be uncomfortable or scared – but I wasn’t going to run away. I was going to stand up straight and tall and walk through.

The interesting thing was that I felt stronger as soon as this decision was made. It wasn’t that I wanted to enter into the battle – on the contrary, I dreaded it. But it was simply that I made the choice to see what God had in mind for me on the other side. I KNEW He had something in mind for me on the other side of it! My desire to get there was stronger than my desire to stay back. I knew God’s hand was reaching out to me asking me to trust Him and let Him take over. I knew that I might bend, but I wouldn’t break because it was His very intention that I reach the other side of the battlefield. He didn’t intend for me to perish in it. That helped so much, just knowing that.

Our battles are very personal. I’ve learned that. The battles that I wage and walk through are not the same battles someone else would go through. For they are intended for my benefit alone. They are intended to whittle away my pride, bolster my courage, strip my fear, and restore my soul. They may be meant by Satan to harm me, but God is using them for my good. And I love that He does that. I don’t want them to go to waste! I want to learn what I can from them so that I don’t have to wage that same war again.

As for Satan, I want him to understand that my battle gear is close by my side now. I can reach for it quickly (if I’m not already wearing it) and that I’m ready to wield it. I don’t want to be an “easy pick” for him. I want him to start thinking twice before he engages me or my family in a battle. I want him to be dismayed, frustrated, and fearful because he chose to attack me. I want to grow into a mighty warrior with a gentle spirit and a faith that can’t be dented.

I hate battle fields. There is so much loss there. But I’m learning that sometimes that loss is needed to have any kind of a great gain. If I want to move forward in my faith, I need to lose some things too. I may be stubborn about it at times, but hopefully, I’m slowly learning – one battle at a time. May this last battle show me enough to never have to wage this particular war again.

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