Shaped by Faith, Fit for Battle
Shaped by Faith, Fit for Battle
I have been told it is not unusual for some people to set the alarm early just to be able to hit the snooze button once, twice and maybe even three times. They say those few minutes can be the sweetest sleep. Some say they never set an alarm and just wake by an internal clock. What about those who wait until the last minute, stumble out of bed, throw on clothes and head to work? Their eyes are open but they’re asleep at the wheel. For these individuals work is most likely a necessity. Their very existence depends on break time, lunch and Fridays.
Although some of us are eager beavers, a large portion of America is spiritually and physically asleep. We are in a constant spiritual battle but some of us continue to sleep through the fight. Ephesians 6:12 says, “For we do not wrestle against flesh and blood, but against principalities, against powers, against the rulers of darkness of this age, against spiritual hosts of wickedness in the heavenly places.” The enemy uses newspapers, the radio and television to attack us. Do you see the reality of Ephesians 6:12 in our world today? Perhaps you believe reading the Bible occasionally, praying as needed, saying grace before meals and keeping a prayer list has you battle ready; however, that’s where Satan wants us, comfortable. Because of this spiritual battle we encounter daily, it is important to clothe ourselves in the armor of God. Ephesians 6:13 declares, “Take up the whole armor of God, that you may be able to withstand the evil day, and having done all to stand, take the helmet of salvation and the sword of the spirit, which is the word of God; praying always with all prayer and supplication in the spirit, being watchful to this end with all perseverance and supplication for all the saints.”
Centuries ago when battles and wars were commonplace, soldiers endured strict training to become physically strong for battle. In India and parts of Europe, men used stone dumbbells to strengthen their bodies. Today, nearly everyone has access to advanced equipment and many people have superior equipment in their homes. The problem is not the availability of equipment but rather the discipline necessary to continue the fight. Exercise has been in existence since the beginning of time although it wasn’t always considered exercise. The daily routine of working the fields and walking and running everywhere kept their bodies in top form. Weight wasn’t an issue back then as it is now. It’s time we realize our bodies are a gift from God. How we care for our bodies reflects how much we appreciate what God has given us. Abusing our bodies by not carefully choosing the food we eat and the lack of exercise in our health regimen impedes us from being battle ready physically, which in turn hinders us spiritually. If our bodies are not strong physically, how can we withstand the attacks spiritually? If our spirit is not engaged to the power source and strengthened daily, it will be easy for the enemy to distract us and keep us from God’s will.
The enemy often distracts us by attacking those we love. To prepare spiritually, we must cover our homes in prayer. Proclaim Joshua 24:15, “As for me and my house we will serve the Lord!” Additionally, pray over your children. Be intentional in your warring with the enemy. The Bible says, “Therefore God also has highly exalted Him and given Him the name which is above every name, that at the name of Jesus every knee should bow, of those in heaven, and of those on earth, and of those under the earth, and that every tongue should confess that Jesus Christ is Lord, to the glory of God the Father.” (Philippians 2:9-11) Remember, the enemy must flee at the sound of the name of Jesus. Prayer is powerful and we must do it if we are to ready ourselves for spiritual battle. Use the sword of the Word of God to disrupt the attack of the enemy on your life and the lives of your family.
In training for spiritual battle we cannot get discouraged. Remember, the source of our power and strength is God. In Him we are bold and courageous. James 4:7 (MSG) says, “So let God work his will in you. Yell a loud no to the devil and watch him scamper. Say a quiet yes to God and he’ll be there in no time. Quit dabbling in sin. Purify your inner life. Quit playing the field. Hit bottom, and cry your eyes out. The fun and games are over. Get serious, really serious. Get down on your knees before the Master; it’s the only way you’ll get on your feet.” Choose to wake up and train like a warrior who is not only spiritually but physically ready for battle. The only way to be truly fit for battle is to be shaped by faith.