Monday, April 5, 2010

The Battle

Lately I feel an overwhelming defense growing inside of me - a hesitation to absorb what seems to be a growing deception even among those teachers we trust. Something feels like we are being led astray. I am cautious, not wanting to condemn, not wanting to accept, not wanting to falsely accuse, and not wanting to make my thoughts self-righteous or pretend that I know more than someone else, that I know the truth and others don't. I am hesitant to do anything. I am not sure if this growing hesitation is a true reflection of what is out there, but it feels like the enemy is movng in. Something feels deceptive. I want to be aware. I want to be on guard. I feel the need to be in the Bible and pray. To be wary of all explanations of Biblical truth, including my own. I have never felt this burden of prayer or this vivid, moving concern over this growing evil that is moving. It is so deceptive! I am fearful that I too may be taken captive by some humanistic philosophy shrouded under a cloak of half-truths that I have followed from someone I percieve to be a Godly man or woman. I only have prayer and the scriptures to cling to. Don't get me wrong - I do not feel weak. But I do feel somewhat isolated. How can our society not see this real struggle, this real war that is surrounding us? How do we fight that which we cannot and do not acknowledge? We see the war and deny its existence! We see bodies strewn about, victims of this battle, and we step over them. We act like Satan is not a powerful, destructive, tactical foe. We pretend that we are benevolent Christians, bringing our feel-good philosphies to the world who just wanders about. we want to reach them, but we don't want to be too pushy. We don't want to come off like we have all the answers. We want them to drift towards God. This is not an amusement park, where we call people to our booth to convince them they will win by joining our team. This is a battle! This is life and death! We watch as our fellow Christians are led astray by deceptions! We watch as the lost wander aimlessly an easy target for an enemy who is anxiously, actively devouring! We tell ourselves that we just need to love people, to let them see God in our lives, that our actions alone will be enough to witness to people. Our enemy gives us this tactic. We have to preach the gospel! We have to tell people the truth! Yes, God is love - but not the kind of love defined by the world, which sacrifices itself to make others feel good. This is not about feeling good! True love hurts! True love has truth! True love exhibits justice! It fights evil! It defends righteousness! Our world is infiltrated with lies! Despicable behavior, lack of understanding, deceptive philosophies. True love exposes those lies! It may not feel like love the way it is defined by this world. But the definiton of love is GOD and HIS righteousness, not the other way around! When we say God is love, it does not mean that God exhibits what we define as love. It means GOD DEFINES WHAT LOVE IS! Truth! Righteousness!

Battles are not careful. War does not merge the two points of view. Tolerance is not a reality! It is not possible. In war, there are two ideals being fought for. You have to choose a side! The sides are at complete and utter opposites! We must pray for the success of Truth, of real Love - all of which is defined by God! We must stand for what is right! We don't only play defense, diggin in our heels and ducking inside the trench to protect ourselves from an advancing enemy. We have to play offense! We have to fight! We have to know what truth is before we can put on the belt of truth! We have to know what true righteousness looks like before we can put on the breastplate of righteousness. Our protection lies here! It lies in the truth found in scripture! It lies in Christ! Our protection must be born of Christ, and shrouded in the indwelling of the Holy Spirit in our lives. I cannot fight this on my own. I will be decieved. It is the power of Christ living in me that offers the only hope of salvation through this wasteland of destruction and lies. The smoke is rising. What side are you on? Just so you know, if you feel like there isn't a battle, that what I talk about is not really happening, not really important, then there is a good chance you are advancing the army of the enemy - and you just may be a soldier in that army!

I pray that Christ may reveal this battle to us as we move about the daily routines and activities. I pray that he will embolden us to pursue the Truth and speak about it to others. I pray that God's army might be stregthened - not only to endure the battle, but to overcome. I pray that we may be filled, encouraged and instructed by the Holy Spirit sent to us by Christ. Join the battle. Put on your armor, and fight! ~Karen

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