Do You Know How To Fight?
13-18 Be prepared. You’re up against far more than you can handle on your own. Take all the help you can get, every weapon God has issued, so that when it’s all over, but the shouting you’ll still be on your feet. Truth, righteousness, peace, faith, and salvation are more than words. Learn how to apply them. You’ll need them throughout your life. God’s Word is an indispensable weapon. In the same way, prayer is essential in this ongoing warfare. Pray hard and long. Pray for your brothers and sisters. Keep your eyes open. Keep each other’s spirits up so that no one falls behind or drops out. – Ephesians 6:13-18 -The Message (MSG)
This question jumped out at me this morning, do you know how to fight? There is so much going on in our world today, knowing how to fight is important. Despite popular opinion, it’s not traditional fight that we need to master, it’s spiritual fight.
When I was young, knowing how to fight was important, you never knew when something would jump off that would require the physical skill of fighting to solve. There were always people who knew how to talk about how well they fought, but if you didn’t actually know how to fight or you didn’t have the entourage to support your claims you were in big trouble.
Now that, I am older, you hear the same kind of dialogue around the big boxing matches, Pacquiao, Mayweather, Marquez, and Alvarez. Fighters come out and talk about what they are going to do, and then fight time comes, and there is a winner and a loser, and the bragging rights go to the victor, not the one who talked the best game.
So, Not much has changed.
Today our lives are full of fights, and lots of them, but they are faith fights, and there are lots of them. You see David and Goliath type experiences happening almost daily, a mother fighting for her children, to have better resources in school. Corporations who decide not to take care of their employees needs for higher wages, and fair treatment. There is violence in the streets, business closures, and political arguments that make it difficult to get things accomplished. When something happens at work, in our neighborhoods, with our children, and in the world, you want someone, somewhere to do something to make things better. In the natural sense, it would be a great time to take out our gloves and get ready for a fight, but the scripture above reminds us that tactic is not an effective first move.
As Christians, we fight on our knees, in prayer first. We call on the power of God, we read His word, and we study it so we can remember what He has already promised to do. “I will never leave you or forsake you”, and “be anxious for nothing, but in everything by prayer and supplication with thanksgiving let your request be made known to God” are instructions, to make us battle ready and armed for victory.
If you want to win the battles in our lives, you have to be willing to fight the way you have been instructed. Not with fists, but first with prayers. God has given us the keys in His word, and when you use them, you can get where you need to go.
When is the last time that you put your boxing gloves away, and took out a piece of paper to write down all of the battles that you are in, and all of your concerns. When is the last time that you decided to try God’s way first?
Good boxers always have trainers, they help them identify the other boxers (the enemies) weaknesses. They show them how to punch, when to block, and when to move out of the way. God does the same thing for us, He tells us when to be still, when to wait, when to move, and when to act. His word shows you how to win each and every battle, even if at the time you look like you are losing. As lovers, and followers of Jesus Christ, you have the ability to stand, but you also have the responsibility to follow. God’s way is always the best way, even when you don’t feel like it and you don’t know how it will turn out.
God gives you instructions about what to do when you get in a fight, not what to do if, but what to do WHEN. God knew you would be in some battles that is why He warns you that in this life, you will have tribulation, but be of good courage because I have overcome the world. So our instructions are PRAY, PRAY, and PRAY, and not just for your concerns, but be INTENTIONAL about praying for others, as well. Through the weapons God has given us, He guides us and directs us, He encourages us, and He can give us peace, so we don’t get caught up in what we see, but we trust Him.