~ Phil Larson
We wrestle much in this life. It is not a wrestling with other people that consumes us but against principalities, against powers, against the rulers of darkness that inhabit and influence this world in many forms, against strong forces of continually spiritually wicked nature in the heavens. Against such we take and place on the whole armor of God, that we would have the ability and endurance to resist and withstand in the days that are evilly normal, and having done all we know to do, sometimes failing and sometimes succeeding, we continue to stand righteous and accepted before our Heavenly Father
Ability and endurance to resist and withstand for Steve.
How many evenings have I been thrashing while sleeping over some small matter best left at the foot of the cross? How often have I lost sleep over an inability to balance out the pressures presented that day? Have you? Of course you have. The drug companies make a fortune over our wrestling mentally and emotionally with issues unresolveable before the sun goes down.
Putting those issues to bed is tough when we have no ready answers. Putting ourselves to bed is tough. Bed is a place of rest. Our promise in trusting God tells us we should be able to lay down in rest. Do we do it? We can. Issues can be settled. They are not settled by being resolved. They are settled by putting them "to rest". They are settled by standing in a place of confidence in God's commitment to working all things together for our good.
Spiritually Wicked Nature
Too often we avoid spiritual truths. It is easy to buy in to explanations of psychology and sociology and other disciplines and ignore spiritual discipline. Evil is real. Satan, the accuser, is real. Demons are real. Spiritual forces of wickedness are real. Avoid this reality at the cost of destruction in your life and the life of your loved ones. These forces are bent on disturbing your rest and confidence and progress. A tired, worn saint is somewhat useless in the workplace, family, community, and congregation. A stalwart, standing saint is a fearsome warrior advancing in all areas for the good of the kingdom.
Spiritually Blessed Nature
Early in the book of Ephesians, Paul tells us we are blessed with all spiritual blessings in heavenly places. It is an exact opposite of what we find during standing lessons by the time we reach chapter 6. It is a clear message. There is all the spiritual force needed to sustain us in the spiritual battle. Stand. Be blessed while facing wickedness.
Living the Lesson
Some years back during an especially testing reorganization of a work unit, a letter showed up on the CEO's desk. In it were lies and accusations concerning my management methods. The letter moved to the CFO and CIO to be addressed. Both knew me and knew the words to be untrue. In conversations as we wrestled with who may have written such a thing and why, the answer seemed evident to me. The person was simply not in control of their own actions. Their actions were actions of a pawn in the hands of evil. The event was committed to prayer. I simply asked my Father to address the hidden issue of accusations from the evil source that were displaying themselves this way. As I discussed the dilemma with a co-worker, I simply agreed that my Father would remove the person involved to a place where they could have more peace. The co-worker thought I should set the person up and trap them. Not my style. Within a month the person who "anonymously" submitted the letter left the company. Life became much easier. Standing instead of attacking made all the difference in a real solution.
Steve, have you been resisted by evilness? Is there some unexplainable situation plaguing you or a family member or a co-worker.
Father, we need endurance. We need resistance to evil built into our substance and soul. Build us.
Encourage us, Father, to stand and receive strength from Your Hand.
We are able in Him.
We are strong in Him.
We can resist in Him.
We can stand in Him.