Monday, March 23, 2020

Ready for Battle - Martin Wiles

We are powerless against this mighty army that is about to attack us. We do not know what to do, but we are looking to you for help. 2 Chronicles 20:12 NLT

We prepared to fight a battle we hoped we wouldn’t have to fight.

The head of school met with teachers, giving us plans for the battle—the one we hoped we’d never have to wage. If the battle was in the building, we should hunker down in our rooms, lying flat on the floor.

These instructions didn’t comfort me, especially since bullets can penetrate walls and intruders can kick in doors. If we could get out, we should flee … quietly.

Now we had to pick a spot to flee to. After taking attendance and lunch orders, we gathered our classes, headed outside, and walked two football fields away to a wooded area. Then each class determined where in the woods we would assemble. This was necessary so we could account for everyone should a real intruder intrude.

The meeting and practice sobered me. We prayed nothing like this would ever happen. Perhaps, we were a little naïve. We lived in a smaller town and attended a private school. But we knew the battle could come, so we got ready, all the while knowing any plan we concocted could be altered by the circumstances.

Our world is a dangerous place. Mass shootings are common. Jehoshaphat’s world mimicked ours in many ways. Enemy armies marched against the southern kingdom of Judah—Jehoshaphat’s territory. He cried out to God for help. He wasn’t ready for battle.

Physical battles can frighten us, but spiritual battles come in more intense forms. Paul says our real fight isn’t against flesh and blood but against evil spirits in an unseen world (Ephesians 6:12). Ones we can’t see, unlike a real intruder with weapons I can see.

Yet, the method of our response should not change. Jehoshaphat cried out to God, asking for wisdom and help. The people cried out too … and fasted.

The time to prepare for battle is not after the battle has begun, but before. Failing to put on our spiritual armor—thinking right thoughts, remembering we’re clothed in Christ’s righteousness, taking the sword of God’s Word, walking by faith, sharing our faith story—sets us up for defeat before the battle ever begins.

More importantly is remembering the battle is not ours, but God’s. He is in charge and the one responsible for routing the enemies of our souls. With Him on our side, victory is certain.

Get ready for your battles, and then let God lead you to victory.

Prayer: Father, guide us to the victories that only You can give.

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  1. Putting on the full armor of God. There will be battles and we must be ready to declare His name and glory over all battles. Thank you for this great message.