In the ancient past, warring, invading hordes were a constant threat to those indigenous to established areas or what we would refer to today as countries. A watchman was set on a walled city or posted on a high hill to keep a constant vigil to protect his people. One who was designated as a watchman had two duties: to take notice and to give notice. The watchman never left his post, lest someone or something slip past him to the ruin of all. Should the invading enemy be spotted a far off, the watchman would give notice to the guard inside the walled city to round up the warriors and prepare for battle.
Often times these battles were long and bloody, leaving a trail of carnage that took a long time and much effort from which to recover. Thriving towns and cities were reduced to a smoldering heap followed by a trail of tears by those who mourned for their dead.
Battles. Our entire lives can be seen as a series of preparation for battle, the battle of your life and for your life. How does one prepare for battle? Is preparation even necessary for today’s Christian? What does God’s word have to say about battle? Many of you are already thinking of Ephesians 6- the full armor of God, right? Nope- not this time! While this passage is preparation for battle, let’s look elsewhere for other battles instruction. Turn to first and second Timothy to peer into the conversation between Paul and his spiritual son, Timothy.
Paul admonished Timothy to be instant in season and out- translation, be ready at all times to do the work God has for you, do the work of the evangelist and keep your eyes on the prize, heaven. Paul’s loving, yet practical advice is not relegated to his understudy, young Timothy, but is most ardently directed at all the readers of God’s word. He instructs believers in how to prepare for the battle of daily Christian living drawing from metaphorical military imagery.
Battles – God never said we would not have them, maybe even many of them, but He does say He will bring us through them.
Sometimes I simply want to stop all this fighting! But you cannot sit down in the heat of the battle or you will be overtaken. This is when our best defense is an offense- prayer. It has taken me TOO long to truly understand the great value of prayer, both yours and mine. I never thought my prayers were valuable, I mean who am I, Elijah? What will my prayers do for anyone? But don’t get stuck there, simply pray!
When Jehoshaphat was surrounded by a vast number of enemies, he fasted and prayed (preparation) and did exactly as God said and won the battle. God told him that the battle was His. 2013- does God still fight our battles? I hear a lot of junk to the contrary, but I know my God. He is for me and he values me so much He died or me. I think that says it all. When you are tired of fighting your battles, why don’t you let God take charge ? Only He alone was made to fight these battles for us, as they get more intense as we go along. Are you battle weary? Battle scarred? Just plain tired of all the constant fighting? I understand; I have been there too. That’s when I must step back and say, Lord, show me how to prepare for battle. That is when He reveals the battle plan the more I prepare for daily battle on my knees, and the more I see God working in my life. Choose not the path of ease, choose the road not taken. It will make all the difference.