Life in the trenches.
We who claim to be Christians are all engaged in war. It is a daily spiritual battle we are fighting.
For our struggle is not against flesh and blood, but against the rulers, against the authorities, against the powers of this dark world and against the spiritual forces of evil in the heavenly realms. 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.
Every day from the time we open our eyes until we close them at night there are battles for our minds and heart. Our loyalties are challenged. Our convictions are tested for weak spots. Our spiritual armor is tried as the enemy seeks weaknesses to exploit. The enemy tempts us to fall into sin thereby minimizing our effectiveness or sometimes even making us give up the fight altogether.
For some life in the trenches is harder than for others. If we are not prepared daily we are more vulnerable. The only effective way to prepare ourselves for battle daily is to meditate on the word of God. When our Lord Jesus was tempted by Satan he used God’s word as his defense. Jesus gave us the example to follow. Reading God’s word daily and applying it to our lives will prepare us for every attack of the enemy.
With the helmet of salvation we know we are saved and belong to God. With the belt of truth we know God loves us and has encircled us with his love. With the breastplate of righteousness we know that we are in Christ and made righteous by his death on the cross. With our feet shod with the gospel we remember God’s word; his promises, provisions and commands. With the shield of faith we can quench the fiery darts of accusations of guilt and doubt cast at us by the enemy. With the sword of the spirit we can answer all attacks in the name, power and authority of God. All authority in heaven and on earth has been given to Jesus.
Sometimes we can fool ourselves into believing a lie. We can tell ourselves that we are fine. Once saved always saved could be interpreted to mean once we are saved that there is no more we need to do. We may believe the battles are over; the war is won. The truth is that is what the enemy wants you to believe. If you believe this you will not feel a need to read God’s word so much or pray so often or go to church regularly. Satan wins when he can get you to walk away from the front battle lines; to get you to put off the armor and rest.
God knows we all need rest from the battle. No one can fight without a break or some relief for weeks or years on end. God understands our frailty and remembers that we were made from dust.
“Come to me, all you who are weary and burdened, and I will give you rest. Take my yoke upon you and learn from me, for I am gentle and humble in heart, and you will find rest for your souls.”
Do not be anxious about anything, but in every situation, by prayer and petition, with thanksgiving, present your requests to God. And the peace of God, which transcends all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus.
This is an unconditional promise from Jesus. When you feel overwhelmed by the stresses in life, come to Jesus. When you feel you are being attacked from all sides, come to Jesus. When you feel the enemy is about to overwhelm your position in the trenches, come to Jesus and he will give you rest for your soul. He will guard your heart and mind from all attacks by the enemy. Read God’s word daily and you will find all the power you need to live today as well as hope for tomorrow.