Monday, April 18, 2011

Spiritual Warfare

It's about time I wrote another blog post.

I don't have time to download pictures, get fancy, and give you a nice little how-to post about anything, so I'll just tell you what's on my heart tonight.

I've been thinking about spiritual warfare, and its most prevalent battlefield; the mind.

Anyone who has been a Christian for any length of time has encountered spiritual warfare, but not all of us recognize it for what it is. I know that I am often far into a battle before I realize that it is a battle. Where did I think those thoughts and temptations were coming from, anyway? Why was I suddenly depressed and anxious, without warning? Where did that sense of oppression come from?

I have learned that when I think I am strongest and most victorious, the Enemy strikes. When I have taken a major step of faith, walked in obedience, conquered a particular fear or doesn't take long for the enemies to retaliate.

A general feeling of anxiety hangs over me, completely disconnected to the circumstances around me. Temptations swarm over me, and my defenses against them are weak. Anger I didn't know I possessed will bubble up at random moments, like lava. A filmy smoke screen seems to obscure my view of my Beloved, and my prayers stumble all over the place.

Can you relate?

Those times of warfare are exhausting. I feel like a green solider, still wet behind the ears, facing Apollyon in the valley of humiliation, like Christian in Pilgrim's Progress. Every time we face each other, I end up on my back, always reaching my sword only in the nick of time.

I've found that the first step towards victory in these battles is recognizing that I'm in one. I have to train myself to watch for the signs.

Secondly, I use advice given me by a wise preacher; if the battle is major and repetitive - such as when the devil was constantly using depression to weigh me down - I go tell my spiritual authority that I'm under attack, and ask him (my father) to pray for me, ...aloud. Our enemies are alive and can hear, you know. The name of Jesus has power to strike fear in them.

Then I try to look for the lie I've believed. Satan is the father of lies, you remember, and they are his major and main weapon. He always, always, always lies. Count on it. If you're under attack, you've been lied to. It's that simple.

So where's the lie? Sometimes it's hard to spot.

Have you believed something about God that isn't true? That He doesn't love you? That His blood isn't enough to cover your sins? That He isn't in control? That He doesn't know what He's doing this time?

Have you believed a lie about yourself? Have you believed that your flesh is enough? Have you trusted in self? Have you believed that you deserved something that wasn't really yours by right? Have you forgotten that you are God's child, and an heir with Christ? Have you forgotten your access to the Father?

Have you believed a lie about someone else? Have you been looking for something in them that only Christ can supply?

Look for it. Identify it. You may have to dig deep, because they are often disguised so beautifully. Pray hard. Prayer is the fire that melts off the pretty package and allows the Holy Spirit to enter and expose the filthy lies for what they are.

Once you have been shown them, speak truth. Find verses that speak the truth about those situations or thoughts, and speak them over and over to yourself. "Take every thought captive." Remember that verse? Do it. Don't let your mind run where it will - it will take the low road. Let this mind be in you which was also in Christ Jesus. He is the Truth.

And the truth will set you free.

And if the Son make you free, you are free indeed.

Blessings, friends, and may Christ give us victory! His blood is our power and strength.


Melanie said...

Amber dearest,
((((((BIG HUGE HUGS))))))
Amber, you are wonderful. :-) Thank you for posting this. The Lord knew it was exactly what I've been needing lately. Thank you, thank you, thank you for posting this!
Love you, girl!!

Amber said...

***Sending a return hug****

:) Aw, Melanie, I'm so glad! God is good! :)

Alethea Jordan said...

I have to say I enjoyed this post. It has been an encouragement. =) I hope you are doing well, Amber Sue. Praying for you.

ConstitutionGirl said...

Thank you so much! Bless you!

Sandra said...

Thanks for posting this Amber, it was informative and encouraging :D I needed to hear this and I think/hope it will help me.