Last fall, The Simply Beloved did a series about seasons. There were beautiful articles about the different seasons we go through and how to handle each of them. I too, have encountered seasons in my life – seasons of darkness and seasons of happiness. The dark seasons tend to be filled with my shaky faith wondering why God was so far away, and questioning why my prayers haven’t been answered. I’ve learned that seasons when God seems distant are a manipulation by the enemy.
When I was first assigned this article, I couldn’t wait to write it because I felt like there was so much to say about how God is our greatest defender and commander. However every time I would start I couldn’t piece it together. I couldn’t articulate what I thought was the armor God has given us to endure the spiritual warfare that we face. After having some time to think and great conversations with a couple of girlfriends, I realized that I was fighting a battle unarmed. Not only was I having a difficult time writing something that’s been a passion for me, I found myself in an odd state of mind.
Recently the weather where I live has been insane – snow and ice are everywhere and the entire town is pretty much shut down for the better part of the week. Normally, I would embrace this time, but in truth, I dreaded it. At night, when I had put my son Colton to sleep, I would sit in bed and be overcome with feelings of loneliness and worry. This began to be a nightly routine, and I had no idea how to stop the frame of mind that plagued me in every free moment.
I felt defeated, and I wasn’t sure what to do. I confided in a friend about how I was feeling, and she told me I was clearly under attack. She explained that the enemy can instill feelings of doubt and worry when our mind has time to wander. He can manipulate our thoughts and remind us of our troubles. I also talked to my fellow “beloved” Micaela, I sent her my thoughts on my article and how I was feeling about writing it. She too, agreed that I was in a battle and I needed to remind myself what God has said about warfare and what a victory we have in Him.
That night instead of watching Netflix, I opened up my bible to Ephesians 6: 10–12. Here, God tells us, “Finally, let the mighty strength of the Lord make you strong. Put on all the armor that God gives, so you can defend yourself against the enemy’s tricks.” From the moment I read those words I realized what a huge battle I was facing, and I wasn’t going to fight it on my own anymore. God tells us our greatest weapon is His Word, so I went in to find what armor He has given to me to wage this war, and now I want you all to be reminded of who we are and our victory in Christ.
“Stand firm then, with the belt of truth buckled around your waist, with the breastplate of righteousness in place, and your feet fitted with the readiness that comes from the gospel of peace” – Ephesians 6:14–15
The enemy is a lurker, he is manipulative, and he is conniving. It’s completely normal as a believer to feel like you’re under attack, which is why it is so important to know what our armor is and how we use it to defeat him.
The enemy is going to attack you; he is going to whisper lies about you and about what God thinks of you. In times like these I want you to remember this verse coming from 2 Corinthians 5:21: “For God made Christ who knew no sin to be sin for us, that we may become righteousness of God in him.” Jesus became sin for us so we could be righteous in God. Perfect Jesus, who knew no sin, became sin, so we could have grace. What God would do that if He didn’t love us with an everlasting love? He loves us so much, He’s does so many things for us, and He looks upon us with great favor. Protect your heart with the righteousness God gives you; don’t doubt who you are because of something the enemy wants to remind you of. Remember that the truth lies in the Word, and so many times in the Bible He tells us that our sins are not who are.
Proverbs 31:25 says, “She is clothed in strength and dignity, and she laughs without fear of the future”. God gives us strength in our righteousness. Our dignity is the nobility He has placed upon us. Though the enemy may try to point out all of your flaws, be proud of the way God created you. God states numerous times what a wonderful creation YOU are.
Lastly beloveds, don’t worry about the future. Have faith in the amazing things God is doing in your life – without you even realizing it!
My personal war had to do with feelings of loneliness, even though I really wasn’t alone, seeing as I was in a house with my family and my sweet son curled up next to me. Lately I have been dwelling on the fact that my wishes for my future have not seemed to me happening in the time that I want them too. I began doubting what God had planned for me. I believed the enemy’s lies and fell into his deceit. Scrolling on Instagram I found a quote that really resonated with how I was feeling in that moment:
“Sometimes, the word ‘wait’ can feel like a ‘weight.’ But when you choose to cast that care knowing that God has your best interest at heart, the waiting time turns to rest. It becomes a time to rejoice for what God will do!” -Victoria Osteen
From this point on I have chosen to focus on what God is doing for me now. I’m rebuking all the things the enemy has tried to make me believe. Instead I am rejoicing in the waiting period, because what I have waiting for me is pretty awesome. I am going to take this time to praise God for all the blessings He has poured out for me and not focus so much on what He is still working on in me.
Stay strong my loves and keep fighting the good fight.
PC: @Joyful_Karen via #TSBweekend