We are in the middle of an epic battle. It is bigger than World War I or Wold War II. It is bigger than the War on Terror. It is unseen. Yet, it is very real, and we all experience it. It is the battle of Good vs. Evil.
The Bible says, “For our struggle is not against flesh and blood, but against the rulers, against the authorities, against the powers of this dark world and against the spiritual forces of evil in the heavenly realms.” (Ephesians 6:12) Have you ever noticed that sometimes when you get in a disagreement with a loved one how quickly it can escalate? Why is that? It is not just a physical struggle. There is a spiritual dimension to it, too.
We have an enemy who does not want us to succeed. Jesus said, “The thief comes only to steal and kill and destroy; I have come that you might have life and have it to the full.” (John 10:10) We must remember that we have an enemy who wants to destroy us. Don’t let satan get a foothold in your marriage, your family, your dreams, your career. God wants you to succeed – therefore, have a plan for how you are going to fight the battle.
Here are the four P’s of what I've found to be an effective Battle Plan:
Pray – There is power in prayer. 2 Corinthians 10:3-4 says, “For though we live in the world, we do not wage war as the world does. The weapons we fight with are not the weapons of the world. On the contrary, they have divine power to demolish strongholds.” We must remember the power that is available to us. The God of the Universe is greater than our enemy, and it is through prayer that we invite Him into a situation. How is your prayer life? Are you praying for your family, co-workers, neighbors and more?
Prepare – Every morning when you wake up, prepare for the battle. In Ephesians 6, the apostle Paul tell us to “put on the full armor of God, so that when the day of evil comes, you may be able to stand your ground.” Therefore, put on the belt of truth, the breastplate of righteousness, the gospel of peace on your feet, the shield of faith, the helmet of salvation, the sword of the spirit (which is the Word of God) and pray.
Protect – The battle is won or lost in your mind and heart. “We demolish arguments and every prevention that sets itself up against the knowledge of God, and we take captive every thought to make it obedient to Christ.” (2 Corinthians 10:5) Are you taking captive the thoughts in your mind and desires in your heart? Instead of making a mistake and finding yourself saying, “What was I thinking?” start taking your thoughts captive beforehand by saying, “What am I thinking?”
Progress – Don’t just be defensive, but engage in the battle. “Be self-controlled and alert. Your enemy the devil prowls around like a roaring loin looking for someone to devour. Resist him, standing firm in the faith, because you know that your brothers throughout the world are undergoing the same kind of sufferings.” We live in a crucial time in history. We must be proactive and move the Kingdom of God forward. God is with us, so let’s be bold and share the Gospel with others.
Ian Maclaren, a Scottish author and theologian, once said, “Be kind, for everyone you meet is fighting a hard battle.” Yes, everyone is fighting a battle, but how many have a plan? How many have a plan to grow spiritually? How many have a plan to develop their prayer life? How many have a plan to have a godly marriage? How many have a plan to further God’s Kingdom? By praying, preparing, protecting and progressing we can engage in the battle for the glory of our great God.
We know the end of the battle – God wins! Therefore, we can fight with confidence knowing our God is greater. Stay strong in the Lord. He is with you and He is for you. Engage in the battle, and let’s make a difference for His Kingdom together!
Jeff Simmons is the Founder and Lead Pastor of Rolling Hills Community Church in Franklin, TN. He also serves as the President of Justice & Mercy International, a nonprofit that exists to make justice personal for the poor, the orphaned and the forgotten of the world. His faith in God and role as husband and father motivates him to be the leader he is and to do the work he has been called to.
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