When I got the news that our worship leader's son was diagnosed with cancer, it knocked the wind out of me. I was already fighting four or five other spiritual battles and this was a major blindside. I grieved in my spirit for this family. And then I got up and fought for them.
See, I've learned over the years that sudden storms will come. I liken it to someone sneaking up behind you with a baseball bat and slamming you in the back of the head. You will probably fall down. There's no shame in falling down. The question is will you stay down and lick your wounds or will you get up and fight?
What you do in that moment defines the next season of your life.
Proverbs 24:16, "The righteous man falls down seven times and will rise again." The devil has knocked me down many times but I always get back up again. It used to take me months or weeks. Now, by the grace of God, I can rise up before the sun goes down.
Just as Paul admonishes us not to let the sun go down on our anger (Eph. 4:26), the Lord has taught me not to let the sun go down on any toxic emotion. We don't have to wallow in self-pity, discouragement, heartache and the like for days or weeks on end. We can run to Jesus hurts, wounds fear, guilt or any other feelings rising up in our soul and find fast deliverance. We can choose to submit ourselves to God, resist the devil and he will eventually flee (James 4:7). We're called to fight the good fight of faith (1 Tim. 6:12).
Always Choose Life
This is our reality: "The thief does not come, except to steal and kill and destroy. I came that they may have life, and that they may have it more abundantly" (John 10:10). In times of trial, we have to remember to choose abundant life. We have to remember the power of death and life are in the tongue (Prov. 18:21). We have to choose whether we will believe the destroyer's lies or believe our Savior's truth.
That means knowing the Word of God. Paul admonished Timothy to, "Study to show yourself approved by God, a workman who need not be ashamed, rightly dividing the word of truth" (2 Tim. 2:15). And Revelation 12:11 tells us how to overcome: By the blood of the Lamb, the word of our testimony and selflessness.
In the sudden storms of life, we need to know the Word of God—and choose the right weapon for the right battle. Think about it for a minute: Surgeons use different blades for different procedures. Mechanics use different tools to accomplish to fix different parts of the car. Golfers use different clubs at different areas of the greens. Likewise, we need to use the right Scripture—the right sword—for the battle.
Wage prophetic warfare with healing Scriptures if you are sick. Wield financial Scriptures if you are facing lack. Swing reconciliation Scriptures if you have a prodigal child. Get a concordance or a prayer book if you have to. But let your testimony in the midst of your trial agree with the High Priest of your confession, Jesus (Heb. 3:1).
Satan trembles at the blood of Jesus because that blood—the life in that blood—defeated Him and the power of death. The shed blood of Jesus Christ washes away our sin, slamming the door on the devil's face. Salvation came to you by way of the blood. Sozo, the Greek word for salvation, implies salvation, healing, deliverance, rescue and safety.
Enter the Battle Field
Enter the battle field with your whole armor on (Eph. 6) but always remember to seek God in the midst of the battle. Often, we're on a devil-hunting mission in the warfare but if we seek Him in the spiritual skirmishes and sudden storms, we'll hear His strategy, receive His power, and find a faster path to victory.
This is not just a spiritual mandate, it's practical wisdom. During spiritual attacks and storms, our minds and bodies get worn down. Proverbs 24:10 warns us, "If you faint in the day of adversity, your strength is small." We must build ourselves up by spending more time with God when sudden storms try to overwhelm us. We need enduring spirits—strength in our inner man. Isaiah 40:31, "They that wait upon the Lord shall renew their strength; they shall mount up with wings as eagles, they shall run and not be weary, and they shall walk and not faint."
You have to determine in your heart ahead of time that you will not quit during the sudden storms because everything in you will drive you toward throwing in the towel. The truth is no weapon formed against you can prosper (Is. 54:7). The weapons will form and may appear to be prospering, but the enemy only has the authority in your life that you give him through fear, doubt, unbelief and surrender.
We need to surrender to the will of God and not the will of the enemy. Pick up your weapons and fight—and surround yourself with people who will fight with you. We're not called to fight alone.
An Encouraging Prophecy for the Weary
Winston Churchill, the prime minister of Britain during World War II when it looked like the Nazis were going to take over the world, put it this way: "If you are going through hell, keep going. Never, never, never give up."
The Holy Spirit spoke these words to my heart. I hope they help you also:
"Don't give up now. You've waited too long and persevered through too many trials, tribulations and battles to lay down your weapons in this season. Keep pressing and know that I am God. Keep moving forward and know that I am with you. Keep advancing in what I've told you to do even if it doesn't look like you are making progress and even when those who should be standing with you appear to be opposing you. Don't give up now."
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