Picture yourself alone in an empty, darkened room. Everywhere you look, all you see is the color black. You keep opening and closing your eyes, hoping they will eventually adjust to the darkness, but nothing changes. You can’t even make out the outline of your own hand as you lift it right in front of your face. But as you begin to put your hand down, something grabs your attention in front of you. It’s so far away you can barely see it, but you’re confident in what it is…light. It’s barely visible, but undoubtedly it’s there. At first you are filled with excitement knowing it exists, but then you realize that you are no longer alone, that there is something or someone in the room with you. It is so dark you are unsure of who or what it is, but you can feel a presence and it is not one of comfort or peace.
The light once again grabs your attention and is drawing you in, but you know you’ll have to fight walking through the darkness to get there. You decide to risk leaving your comfort in pursuit of the light. As you begin to take that first step, you bump your elbow. It doesn’t feel good, but you’re more focused on your purpose than what is getting in your way, so you press on. You are able to take a couple more steps without running into anything, but as you get closer to the light, the presence in the room gets stronger and closer, and it gets harder and harder to navigate the darkness. As you encounter more and more resistance and obstacles, the harder it is to keep going. At one point, you even stop in your tracks and start to wonder if the light is really worth it.
Friend, this is the feeling of spiritual warfare. It exists. It is not only something that is very real, but something we can count on facing when we decide to seek a life following Christ.
Now, don’t be misled. Every single person on this earth will face pain and heartache; that’s the consequence of living in a sinful world. But there is a difference between encountering daily struggles derived from fleshly desires and disobedience, then there are purposeful, intentional attacks of the enemy.
The enemy of our souls is no fool. He knows that the closer you get to God in your walk and the deeper your relationship and character grow, the more impact you will make for God’s kingdom here on earth. So what does he do? He goes for your Achilles’ heel, the very spring of encouragement, joy, and passion in your life to hinder you from growing. Whether it be your faith, children, marriage, job and/or health, he knows where to try and hurt you.
But here is the thing, friend: we don’t need to tremble with fear and hide from the enemy and all his darkness. No, he needs to hide from us…the very light of Christ.
“In the same way, let your light shine before others…” – Matthew 5:16
“For the Spirit God gave us does not make us timid, but gives us power, love, and self-discipline.” – 2 Timothy 1:7
“I (Christ) have given you authority to trample on snakes and scorpions and to overcome all the power of the enemy…” – Luke 10:19
“But we are not of those who shrink back and are destroyed, but of those who believe and are saved…” – Hebrews 10:39
“The Lord is with me; I will not be afraid. What can human beings do to me?” – Psalm 118:6
Picture yourself in that dark room again, but this time, imagine your entire body being illuminated with the power, light, and glory of Christ. As you press on with every single step, the darkness has no choice but to vanish. It may try to push back and attack, but you stand firm in your faith and grow in spirit. You begin to quickly learn and discern what areas are tender and prone to attack and are able to prepare for the warfare through prayer and meditation on the Word. But most importantly, with the power and authority of the name of Jesus, no weapon formed against you prospers and you ultimately reach the light.
“Therefore put on the full armor of God, so that when the day of evil comes, you may be able to stand your ground, and after you have done everything, to stand.” – Ephesians 6:13
“… Be prepared in season and out of season…keep your head in all situations, endure hardship…” – 2 Timothy 4:2, 5
You see, Christ has already won the war. It is finished. We just have to make sure we keep our eyes on that light of truth and not lose our footing.
“In this world you will have trouble. But take heart! I (Jesus) have overcome the world.” – John 16:33
“… in all these things we are more than conquerors through him who loved us. For I am convinced that neither death nor life, neither angels nor demons, neither the present nor the future, nor any powers, neither height nor depth, nor anything else in all creation, will be able to separate us from the love of God that is in Christ Jesus our Lord.” – Romans 8:37-39
“Your sins have been forgiven on account of his name…because you know him who is from the beginning…because you have overcome the evil one… because you are strong, and the word of God lives in you… “ – 1 John 2:12:14
So what do you say, beloved?
Are you going to shrink back or are you going to finish this life fighting?