The Battle // 爭戰
Do you feel like you struggle with the same thing over and over? 你有否覺得自己為同一件事情不斷地掙扎﹖
And the God of all grace, who called you to his eternal glory in Christ, after you have suffered a little while, will himself restore you and make you strong, firm and steadfast. - 1 Peter 5:10
Suffering seems to turn our heads towards the heavens and ask God, “WHY? Why me? What have I done? What are you doing? Why aren’t you rescuing me?”
I know because I have a struggle which I thought would just go away on its own. Instead it’s gone on for over a year and I feel like such a failure. Sure, I’ve prayed for healing but it’s quite disheartening to ask for forgiveness, will yourself into believing that God has freed you, just to fall back to the same spot the next day.
But it’s not the same spot.
When I stopped asking God for the easy way out and asked what He actually wants me to do, He told me to first of all, recognize that this is a raging spiritual battle, and call it out. That’s when I realized, yes it is, those temptations and feelings of failure mixed with condemnation do not come from God. So as a natural response, I rejected these things in the name of Jesus. I realized God is telling me to call out the lies that the enemy is telling me. Thinking that this is purely something internal in my mind and has nothing to do with anything or anyone else is the first lie. Call it out. (For those who may not understand what I’m on about; in short, satan – aka the enemy – has one sole purpose: to separate us from God by causing us to sin. He does so by lying to us, stealing from us, and destroying what is ours. Our God is the truth, restores and mends. This resistance from satan is what we call a spiritual war/battle). Denying that this is a spiritual warfare is like standing at gun point saying that there’s nothing in front of you. Forget running away, you can’t even duck when the trigger is pulled.
Warfare, is it?
So what am I supposed to do with my bare hands? We’ve established that there isn’t much I can do on my own.
Pray. Prayer is the most powerful weapon God has given us, it also happens to be the most powerful one anyone can ever have when it is used according to God’s will. The Lord showed me that in prayer, every lie that I call out and rebuke in the name of Jesus… are literally gunshots that I’m firing.
So why put me through this? What happened to those one-off miraculous healings that we so often hear about, even see with our own eyes?
By this point I don’t even care. God is putting me through something so much more exciting. The enemy will keep raging and trying to take us from God until Jesus returns again – so I will be in a spiritual battle one way or another. I’ve learnt the theory of it, so what better way to train for combat by being in combat?
At least in my case, I can say with confidence, that no, God doesn’t want to give me one-time healing, but that doesn’t make Him evil, nor am I bitter about it (well, I do get bitter about it when I lose sight of what He’s trying to give me, but by Jesus’ grace I get up on my feet and keep fighting), because my all-powerful Father in heaven is trying to give me something much greater. He’s equipping me to be a fighter, a soldier, a warrior, to fight battles. Don’t we humans say it’s better to teach a man to fish than to give him a fish?
9 “Which of you, if your son asks for bread, will give him a stone? 10 Or if he asks for a fish, will give him a snake? 11 If you, then, though you are evil, know how to give good gifts to your children, how much more will your Father in heaven give good gifts to those who ask him! - Matthew 7:9-11
那 賜諸般恩典的神曾在基督裡召你們，得享他永遠的榮耀，等你們暫受苦難之後，必要親自成全你們，堅固你們，賜力量給你們。- 彼得前書5章10節
Image credit: Flickr/Steve Mclaren