by Steffan Carr

Life can feel like a battle sometimes.  You know the expressions – ones like “Every time I seem to get ahead, something seems to knock me two steps back”; or “I’m doing good just to keep my head above water”; or “If I didn’t have bad luck, I wouldn’t have any luck at all”; or “that’s just my luck”; and the all too prideful coping statement “If the Lord never gives more than I can handle, He must think I’m awfully strong.”

Well, the fact is you and I are in a battle.  But, it is not a battle of finances, physical health, time management, or anything of the physical realm.  It’s a spiritual battle and it is real.  It may sometimes manifest itself in the physical life, but it is really being waged in and on our souls.

So, since it is a battle and since you and I cannot avoid it, how do we manage or even thrive through it.  First, be sure you know which side you are on.  There are only two – make no mistake about it.  There is either the Lord’s Side or then there’s the Other Side – there is not other.  The Lord Jesus said it Himself in Matthew 12 and again in Luke 11 that “whoever is not with me is against me” – what a powerful statement.  CHOOSE this day whom you are going to serve (Joshua 24:15) – will it be Jesus or will it be the Enemy of your soul – your choice!!  If you haven’t chosen, then you have chosen – meaning that there are only two side and if you have not chosen Christ, then you have chosen against Him.  Be wise in your choice, my friend!!  Remember that “whoever calls upon the Name of the Lord will be saved” (Romans 10:13) and if “we confess our sin He is faithful and just to forgive us our sin and cleanse us from all unrighteousness (1 John 1:9).  So choose wisely and if you need help in this process, please contact us at BOC – we’d love the opportunity to help walk  you through this decision.

Second, be sure to put on all your spiritual armor (Ephesians 6) for the spiritual battle.  Be sure that you stay with your platoon in this battle (your platoon meaning your local band of brothers and sisters in Christ – for those who are not yet sure what I am talking about, I am referring to the CHURCH; don’t fall for the lie that you can be an obedient, thriving Christian apart from the Church – see the Lord’s command for us in Hebrews 10:25).  And be sure you are eating, breathing, and training regularly – eating by reading God’s Word, breathing by praying, and training and being active in ministry.  All of this is done with your band of brothers and sisters – get yourself TO CHURCH and GET INVOLVED!

Then be sure you are dealing with sin in your life.  Sin is like carrying a hundred pound backpack filled with rocks while you are on a 20-mile hike to reach the Enemy whom you will be doing hand-to-hand combat with for hours!!  It serves no purpose and serves to hinder you in your energy, your effectiveness, and your ability.  Put the pack down – confess and forsake that sin – and see how lighter you feel, how much stronger you are, and how much more effective you will be!!  The sin really does not serve any purpose in your life.

Lastly, when you’ve gotten rid of the unnecessary weight of sin, spiritually nourished yourself, spiritually breathing, have put on the whole armor of God, gotten yourself with your platoon, and are breathing strong, it’s time to remember to just NOT QUIT!!!  Don’t give up!!  The battle is the Lord’s!!  The Lord promises us that if we don’t give up, He will grant us a special reward (Galatians 6:9; 2 Timothy 4:7-8).  Don’t get weary and give up in the battle – the best is yet to come.  Focus your eyes upon Jesus (Hebrews 12) and look to your Commander and Chief (Who understands about pressing on in the midst of the battle – check out Philippians 2:1-11) and keep pressing on.  Remember that the battle is spiritual (Ephesians 6:12), so the fight will happen in the spiritual realm, and when this old life is over, the reward will take place in the spiritual realm.  So, be sure today that you are storing up your treasure in Heaven, “where moths and vermin do not destroy, and where thieves do not break in and steal.”

Don’t give up in the battle; don’t grow weary; keep fighting, for your reward is great and it awaits you if you just don’t give up!!

God bless y’all!!!