Slim wrote a great post called, “Do you live your life realizing the reality of spiritual warfare?”
I had to blog about this because at one point in my life spiritual warfare was not real at all. I sometimes say God covered my eyes like you might cover a child’s eyes when driving past an accident scene or something scary comes on TV.
So I could cheerfully say, “Yea though I walk through the valley of the shadow of death, I will fear no evil…” because evil doesn’t even exist and the bogeyman is just a literary device anyway. It made me bold, which I needed at the time, but it was the boldness of innocence or perhaps ignorance.
Then I grew up and God began to lift His fingers from my eyes….
I take great pleasure in the fact that I probably really deflated the enemy by paying him no mind, by rendering him invisible, by denying his very existence. Who?? He might as well have been lost in my spam folder…
So this is a bit amusing, in the sense that blind spots can sometimes be amusing, but something I completed missed was the whole concept of preparation, training, boot camp. Rather then being a ninja or a well trained soldier or a prize fighter or something, I just figured you simply fight back when you have to, as a last resort. From a place of complete desperation.
Why in the world would anyone anticipate hard times and train for it? The bible does say, “In the world ye SHALL have tribulation: but be of good cheer; I have overcome the world.” I however, heard the part about “be of good cheer” far more then I heard the part about “shall have tribulation.”
The whole notion of preparation completely escaped me. So did the idea of putting on spiritual armor, way before you need it. So did the whole idea of pre emptive warfare.
Stock up your ammo with The Word. Jesus is armed with The Word when satan comes to tempt Him. Write it all over the tablet of your heart. Praise and worship just like you pack beans and rice in your pantry, long before you’re hungry. “Do not neglect to meet together as is the habit of some,” but fill yourself up with the wisdom and experiences of others. Guard your heart, way before it ever comes under attack.
Do all these things in the calm, in the peace before the storm comes. Get your own bunker in order, stocked up, get your own cup over flowing. Fill the gas tank now. Train, practice.
Younger people tend to live in the moment more, they often aren’t thinking ahead. But you get a bit older and you really start to look back and go, “Whoah if it weren’t for the grace of God, I would never have survived that because I was so not prepared.” One of the joys in my life today is looking back and seeing how God actually stepped in, intervened, rescued me. Like literally, just like scraping a pancake off the floor.
I love preparation today, I love the whole notion of pre emptive spiritual warfare. One of the best things we can do if we’re about to face some stuff? Go praise and worship. But I was once one of those kids sighing, just rolling my eyes, endlessly complaining, “Really Lord? You want me to read the bible, again? This is sooo boring! C’mon, I don’t need to go to church today, I’m fine.”
Endlessly complaining for sure, but also somewhat faithfully obeying.
So Slim says,
“Do you realize that you have a spiritual enemy?
Does that change the way you live?
Yep, a big amen to that.