Stop Fighting Battles You Were Never Meant to Fight
"The Lord will fight for you; you need only to be still." Exodus 14:14
"Everyone you meet is fighting a battle you know nothing about." How many times have you heard that in your life? I know I have heard it over and over. And it's absolutely true. There are people wrestling with tough issues internally, physically, emotionally, physically.
Struggles are real in life. I am not here to doubt that. Currently, I have been fighting the battle of grief after the death of my Daddy almost four months ago. I fight the images that are in my head of his last moments. The sound of his last breath lingers in my mind, and I can almost hear it when I am alone and it's quiet. It's haunting at times.
I started thinking about the quote in more detail. "Everyone you meet is fighting...." I mentally stopped and lingered a bit on the word "fighting." Fighting involves a struggle, an argument, a war. It's an active word encouraging us to take action and overtake our enemies and abolish our anxieties.
In the natural, fighting comes chained to emotions of fear, hopelessness, panic and conflict. Whether it's an actual fight with a person or an internal battle related to finances, worry over the future, worry over a spouse or child, or a body image issue.
I began to speak to God about this fight, and in my heart I remembered his word where Moses told the children of Israel, "The Lord will fight for you; you need only be still."
There are times God calls for stillness. He asks for us to remember the full armor of God described in Ephesians 6: 10-18. If we cloth ourselves in this armor, we are protected. We don't have to worry about the future or what tomorrow holds, because we know who holds tomorrow.
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So what does the "Full Armor" really mean?
Salvation=deliverance from sin and its consequences. Jesus died so that we could live! We have to remember that in every situation. No matter what we have done in the past, He has redeemed our future. I love that salvation is depicted by a helmet. It protects our heads. We have to remember that our home is not on this earth with its problems and challenges. We have to stop intellectualizing everything. We are just journeymen passing through, sharing love and Jesus with all those we meet so that they may journey with us to be with our Creator.
Righteousness=the quality of being morally right or justified. If we follow the word and do what is right by God, He is able to work on our behalf more easily, and He will.
Truth=standing on God's truths when the world tries to tell you differently. The enemy loves to lie to us and tell that we are nobody or that we aren't usable. He likes to tell us people don't like us and that our financial situation will never get any better. Lies! You must know the word to stand on its truths, so study it and hide it in your heart.
Faith=We must have complete trust in God. God doesn't do anything half way. And we shouldn't just halfway trust Him. He deserves 100% of our trust. We have to know that we know that he in control, and that He will see us home one day. Yes, there will be battles along the way, but those battles build character and endurance. "Suffering produces endurance, and endurance produces character and character produces hope" (Romans 5:3-4) And all believers have hope. A hope of a better tomorrow, a hope of a glorious homecoming.
Spirit=The very essence of who God is should be ingrained in our hearts and minds. We should carry Jesus and His Spirit with us wherever we trod. He is our sword and there is nothing He can't defeat. NOTHING. NOTHING. NOTHING. What are you currently battling? He has defeated it.
Gospel of Peace=We should walk in the gospel wherever we go. It should be the covering on our feet so that we always have it with us. The gospel protects our steps and guides us. Peace is opposite of war. I believe God wants us to walk in His peace. His peace never leaves us. It's a constant if we will press into it.
I have taken many battles on myself that God intended to fight for me. I have yearned to control situations that were beyond my control. I can tell you that it is one of the most freeing things in the world to say, "Here God, take my mess. It's yours. Fight my battle for me." And that is what I do at night when I am feeling pain in my heart and reliving my Daddy's death.
Let's stop NOT letting people know about our battles. We must protect our hearts, but we should also be open and wise to choose those with whom we can share our hearts--people that encourage us, speak the word into us and help us pray through the difficult situations. People are a blessing that are used by God. You never know when sharing your battle with someone can help you and the other person.
Believers have the choice to put on the full armor and a choice to lay down the burden...lay down addiction, lay down pornography, lay down lying, lay down gossiping, lay down gluttony, lay down your desire to always be in control.Leave it where it belongs...at the feet of Jesus, the one who can actually do something about it. The one who has already done something about it. He defeated sin, death, and all the garbage we try and lug around when he died on the cross.
Even though God is in control, it doesn't mean Christians get to take the backseat and exit the battle field all together. We are told, "Anyone who wants to live a godly life,in Christ Jesus, will be persecuted," in 2 Timothy 3:12. We have to battle in prayer and petition the Lord for His will to be done, no matter what that looks like. We have to ask him to gird us up in his protection and give us strength to handle whatever happens.
What is there to fear? We know the end of the story. We know that we have the victory and Jesus wins this thing. At the end of the day, we know where we are going! Why are we afraid?
We shouldn't have confidence in ourselves and in our own flesh. That's where we get in trouble. We look at our track record and know we have messed up and made mistakes. It's not our job to fight alone. We are incapable of winning by ourselves. All of our trust should be placed in God who will fight our battles for us if allow Him to do so.
It's time we stop trying to fight the battle on our own. The battle no one else knows about, you know the one. It's time we put on the full armor, our protection, our Savior, our Redeemer, and trust that our Deliver will show up, and when he does, HE HAS SET US FREE! It's up to us to step out of the shackles and begin living the way He intended.
Father, you are an amazing God that has equipped us with what we need to be successful in this life. You are always there to protect us and to fight our battles. I ask that you, the master deliverer, intervene in our lives and take over our battles. Help us to remember that you are always there to go before us and pave a way when the way seems hopeless or dark. You bring darkness to light, and I pray that you touch those reading this prayer that are struggling with depression, anxiety, physical problems, emotional problems or spiritual problems. May you have the last work in their situation. Help them to draw near to you. I love you and I praise you for being who you are. In Jesus' Name. Amen.