Now, I realize there’s a danger of blame shifting here. I don’t want to sound entirely passive, as though I don’t have a sin nature that doesn’t get self-absorbed and easily angered. I do. But there are times that denying a spiritual element is also denying reality.
The work we do is not just physical. We often forget that “our battle is not against flesh and blood, but against the rulers, against the authorities, against the world powers over this darkness, against the spiritual forces of evil in the heavens” (Ephesians 6:12).
There are rulers in the spiritual realm that have actual power. While the extent of their power may be unclear, the Scriptures at least teach us this much.
It feels uncomfortable to talk about this and we often don’t. However, how often do we recognize this spiritual battle that wages? How often do we let it affect our prayer life and our perspective? How often does it drive us to our knees pleading for grace, vigilance and protection?
We need to pick up the phone and ask others to pray for us when we can’t see straight. We need to recognize and extinguish lies about our husbands and others with whom we’re on mission. We need to tread very carefully in these relationships, believe the best about each other, have grace, and recognize this important truth: Although life sometimes lulls us into believing we are traveling on a cruise ship, the reality is we’re on a battleship. The enemy vessel wants nothing more than to drive a wedge between teammates so he can take our ship down.
My husband is NOT the enemy. The enemy is the enemy.
What we need to do more than anything is to join hands and turn our attention to fighting the enemy, not each other. “Be sober-minded. BE WATCHFUL. Your adversary the devil prowls around like a roaring lion, seeking someone to devour.” And should this image paralyze us with fear, we need to remember that this lion is indeed on a leash.
May we be strong in the Lord and in the power of His might, not attempting to take even a step without the King’s armor.
Today I am writing this at a rocky beach on the Potomac River. I have been sitting against a gray rock with my laptop on my lap, soaking in the sun and releasing the words. Just a minute ago, I looked to my right and noticed a snake lying on the very rock I was perched against, a mere centimeter from my elbow. Its long, furtive body startled me so much I nearly threw my computer into the river. I stood up, tried to catch my breath, and watched it bake in the sun, shaking my head at its stealth.
It only seemed fitting to end the post with a reminder.
The snake tends to camouflage well.
Published March 12, 2014