My heart is heavy
From the work it takes to keep on breathing. “Worn,” Tenth Avenue North
Spiritual warfare. Let’s talk about it. Because…let’s be honest. When you hear about it, you may think of people being overtaken by demons, questioning their faith, or running from God. Right? Maybe?
It can be these things. But it can also be very different. It can happen to the new believer. It can happen to the seasoned. It can occur to the one being “fed” in the back of the pew, and the one standing up front-the pastor. It can happen to the one whose faith is fragile, and the one who has been the most faithful. Spiritual warfare is real and present in all those who work with and for God, and there is a weapon for it.
First, what does it look and feel like?
Yes, spirtiual warfare can come in the form of intense suffering-one after the other. You may feel your life is in shambles. Some may have a crisis of faith, and some may even fall away from God.
Others experience the warfare differently. Maybe you are on the path you feel led by God to be on, but the weight of the world you are carrying daily is becoming increasingly heavy. You are tired. You are listening to voices that tell you it is all too hard, so you get discouraged. Maybe you even start to look around at others who seem to carry it easier, and you don’t know why you can’t. Your prayers seem to hit the ceiling, if you manage to pray at all.
And my prayers are wearing thin
I’m worn even before the day begins
I’m worn I’ve lost my will to fight
I’m worn so heaven come and flood my eyes
You are just tired. You are worn. This is spiritual warfare, and it can come out of nowhere.
I have been here before. I wonder, even, if pastors get here frequently. Because there can be a constant flood of comparisons. The world can be really heavy at times for us, and there is a strong desire; even an expectation that more needs to be done; and you are the one who needs to do it.
Before, I have chosen the methods of the world, which I now know lead to destruction. Because that is what Satan desires: The thief’s purpose is to steal and kill and destroy. My purpose is to give them a rich and satisfying life. John 10:10, NLT
To kill our spirit. Steal our soul. Destroy our faith in God. And we destroy him, not by focusing on the world. All its resources, answers, solutions, and messages. This is likely what got us in this state. Instead, we remember:
For we are not fighting against flesh-and-blood enemies, but against evil rulers and authorities of the unseen world, against mighty powers in this dark world, and against evil spirits in the heavenly places. Therefore, put on every piece of God’s armor so you will be able to resist the enemy in the time of evil. Then after the battle you will still be standing firm. Ephesians 6:12-13
We realize that the warfare is not with each other, but Satan; and we put on our armor, focusing on the answers, solutions, messages and truth God provides. It is right there for us. At our disposal-whether written on pages, or at our fingertips in phones-it’s His Word. We choose to read it, to savor it, and to put it into practice, and use it to rebuke the devil.
Warfare is inevitable as a believer, especially in a broken world. Until we reach our final destination, we will have pain. We will have strife, and we have a real enemy that is the ruler of that evil. We do not have to remain worn. We can resist the enemy in prayer, and by consistently calling out to Him, something we may have neglected as we have grown more weary during the battle. He is the weapon when you are worn out from the war, yet often the last one we pick up. After we look to the world. We look to our friends. We look to everyone else to hear our cries to just make it stop, we remember the One who can.
Put on salvation as your helmet, and take the sword of the Spirit, which is the word of God. Pray in the Spirit at all times and on every occasion. Stay alert and be persistent in your prayers for all believers everywhere. Ephesians 6:17-18
Perhaps we have the wrong swords in our hand, and sometimes we are reading the wrong words. Statuses that don’t make us feel anything but worse, and words that only fill us and tell us what we “want” to hear, not what we “need to hear.” Open up the TRUTH you need to get out of the pit, to stop letting Satan win the war, and start praying God moves those mountains you are determined can’t be moved. He will show up. He has before when you started fighting back, and He will again. This is a war only won by Him, and last time I checked, we weren’t promised to remain worn, we were promised to win.