Spiritual Warfare; December 15, 2021

Psalm 116:7 Be at rest once more, O my soul,
for the Lord has been good to you.

People have made fun of it, but David actually had a pretty good idea when he talked to himself in his Psalms. Sometimes we would do well to give ourselves a good talking to as well! The devil is out to steal, kill, and destroy, (John 10:10) and he loves nothing better than to steal our joy and destroy our peace. However, the only tools he has to do that are lies, so we need to remind ourselves of God’s truth in defense. We have been given the armor we need, (Ephesians 6:10-18) but we have to put it on and use it. The Word of God is “sharper than any two-edged sword,” (Hebrews 4:12) but we have to be fully familiar with it to use it effectively. A good swordsman with steel swords will practice countless hours to build up “muscle memory,” so that his body will act without his having to think about it. The same may be said of “spiritual swordsmanship.” The better we allow the Word of God to soak into our heart and mind, the more readily we will be able to apply it in all the situations of life. However, we aren’t going to be very effective at that when we’re all stirred up over something. Sometimes we need to say to ourselves very sternly, as David did, “Return to your rest!” Just about every believer has experienced moments of complete rest and peace, and in times of stress we need to get back to that. It’s not like we don’t know what it is! It is when we are at rest in the Lord that we can respond accurately and effectively to every situation, every attack.

This is an extremely timely Word to me right now, because just last night I really snapped at my wife because of the stress I’ve been under, and continue to face. Today and tomorrow are the climax of the stressful events on the schedule, but it doesn’t stop with tomorrow by any means. I need to keep quoting this verse to myself throughout this season, because the Lord has indeed been good to me. The lies of the devil are exactly that, lies, and I am to give them no place in my heart. As I tell others so often, I am to take my eyes, my focus, off of myself and place them firmly on my Lord, “who for the joy set before him endured the cross, scorning its shame, and sat down at the right hand of the throne of God.” (Hebrews 12:2) He’s already done everything, so my job is to abide in Him and let His Spirit guide me and carry me along.

Father, thank You for this reminder. Help me indeed apply and live out Your Word to me, and not just give it lip service. (James 1:22) I’ll be speaking here at the interdenominational prayer meeting in just over an hour. Help me be fully present and focused, and not distracted by all that is to follow. Help me spend this time in joyful anticipation of what You are going to do in and through me, so that I will give the devil no room at all, but be fully submitted to You. (James 4:7) Thank You. Praise God!

About jgarrott

Born and raised in Japan of missionary parents. Have been here as an adult missionary since 1981.
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