Sometimes I just feel overwhelmed . . . with my responsibilities, with my personal struggles, with the heartache in the world and the difficulties faced by others. It is in those moments that the Lord gently reminds me that I was never meant to face my battles alone . . . that He is there with me in the midst of them, and He has a purpose in them. When we face any battle, we must:
Run to the Lord
Our tendency is to wander off on our own, to figure out and “manage” our lives by ourselves. We were never meant to live this way. Whenever we face a new challenge or struggle, we are safest when we run to the Lord and proclaim our dependence on Him. He has the power and resources to help us. “My help comes from the Lord, the Maker of heaven and earth” (Psalm 121:2, NKJV). Since the Lord made heaven and earth and rules over them, He certainly can help us in every way.
Rely on the Lord
God tells us in His Word that He allows certain enemies to come against us, in order to teach us how to fight our battles (Judges 3:2). We would be weak indeed if we did not learn how to exercise our spiritual muscles. Our challenges give us the opportunity to grow stronger in our faith, to build our reliance on and love of God. When Abraham faced his challenges, he refused to become weak in faith (Romans 4:19); “yet, with respect to the promise of God, he did not waver in unbelief but grew strong in faith, giving glory to God, and being fully assured that what God had promised, He was able also to perform” (Romans 4:20-21, NASB). Bottom line: Abraham chose to believe God, “and it was credited to him as righteousness” (Romans 4:3).
Whatever battle we face, we can go one of two ways: faith and courage (in God) or fear and discouragement (by looking at ourselves, our situation). Yet, we are told, “God has not given us a spirit of fear, but of power and of love and of a sound mind” (2 Timothy 1:7, NKJV). So when we face fear or discouragement in our battles, we can know those things are not from God. They can serve to remind us that we need to look to and call on God’s Spirit, the Holy Spirit, who helps us operate in His power, love, and thoughts. The Holy Spirit trains us on the battlefield to say no to fear and discouragement and yes to faith and courage.
We can learn and grow under the training of the Holy Spirit as we choose to believe and receive encouragement from what God says . . . about us, and about Himself. We are valiant warriors when the Lord is with us (Judges 6:12).
Let the Lord reveal Himself
In those overwhelming battles, when we are depleted of our own resources and abilities, those are the places where God loves to show up and show off. Those are the places where He can display His glory. And the world needs to see that . . . so others can be drawn to Him.
“But we have this treasure [God’s Spirit dwelling inside of us] in earthen vessels [our physical, weak bodies], so that the surpassing greatness of the power will be [shown to be] of God [His sufficiency] and not from ourselves” (2 Corinthians 4:7, NASB and AMP).
When we run to the Lord and rely on the Lord, then others have the opportunity to see the Lord at work and to seek Him too. God told Paul and He tells us, “’My grace is sufficient for you, for power is perfected in weakness’” (2 Corinthians 12:9). And Paul replied, “’Most gladly, therefore, I will rather boast about my weaknesses, so that the power of Christ may dwell in me. Therefore I am well content with weaknesses, with insults, with distresses, with persecutions, with difficulties, for Christ’s sake; for when I am weak, then I am strong’” (2 Corinthians 12:9-10, NASB). May we say the same, and may we allow Jesus to be seen in us in whatever battles we face.
Question: What battle are you facing right now, and how can we pray for you? Comment at the link below.
Susan Jane King