God has been doing a number in my heart. He is stretching me, refining me, showing me the state of my heart, and pulling me out of my comfort zone. I have always been hesitant to talk about spiritual warfare – I don’t know why. It’s a real thing, but I guess sometimes it may seem far-fetched, uncomfortable or weird; but the reality is, there is a battle going on for our hearts and minds, and it is very real.
This has been one of the things that has been so prevalent in my life since moving to Lusaka. I’ve seen God move in powerful ways. I’ve also seen how the enemy has messed with people’s lives, including my own. I have really struggled with believing the lies of the enemy, and it wasn’t until about two weeks ago when I realized how much I was letting these lies get to me, fill my head, and drive out any truth that was left there. The Lord had literally sent me an angel; that being a friend at church. We first met a couple of months ago when after our church service she came up to me, told me that she felt God telling her to pray for me throughout the service, and she encouraged me by speaking truth into my life about a particular situation that I was facing. She had no clue who I was, what I was going through, and God used her to speak into my life, leaving me FILLED with a peace that I can’t explain. Through that experience we started a friendship. A friendship that I thank God for. Just two weeks ago after chatting about life, she asked me to come over because she wanted to talk to me and pray for me. As I had been talking to her she could tell I was struggling, without me actually saying it. She told me to go home and pray that the Holy Spirit would reveal Himself to me in a mighty way, and convict my heart of things that needed to be changed. That night she also texted me the passage about putting on the full armour of God.
When I went over to her house the next day she helped me work through those struggles – struggles that I didn’t even know were struggles until she called me out on it. She pointed out to me that the things I was saying, and the mindset I was developing sounded like I was believing the lies of the enemy and forgetting God’s truth. So we went through things one by one. We would acknowledge the lie, replace it with what God’s Word says (His promises), give that struggle to Jesus (willingly asking Him to take it), and nail it to the cross (understanding what it meant when Jesus died for me). She prayed over me and reminded me that we need to daily put on the armour of God to protect our heart and mind from the lies that the enemy is trying to throw at us. When the enemy sees something good, he wants to destroy it – so we need to be ready.
I thanked her as I left and told her that I was so appreciative that with her busy schedule of working, being married and having three kids, she would take the time to sit with me and pray over me. And she said to me “Melissa, I don’t even know you that well, but I love you so much”. Honestly, I thank God for her!
We are all facing a battle of some sort. Some are big and obvious, and some are quietly destroying us. These battles have the power to push us to Jesus, or to push us away from Him. It’s all in how we fight. My friend reminded me that the way I need to fight is by reading and memorizing scripture and praying to God that He would fill my mind with His truths, while acknowledging those lies as lies and destroying them. She told me to get rid of anything in my life that was distracting me from God. Even if it wasn’t necessarily a bad thing. If it was keeping me from having more of a love for God’s Word, it was a waste of time. Daily put on the full armour of God – why? So you can take your stand against the devil’s schemes. She told me that there are some days where it isn’t enough for her to read about the full armour of God, but that she will physically and mentally put on each piece.
I encourage you to be alert, be ready, and fight the right way!
10 Finally, be strong in the Lord and in the strength of his might. 11 Put on the whole armor of God,that you may be able to stand against the schemes of the devil. 12 For we do not wrestle against flesh and blood, but against the rulers, against the authorities, against the cosmic powers over this present darkness, against the spiritual forces of evil in the heavenly places. 13 Therefore take up the whole armor of God,that you may be able to withstand in the evil day, and having done all, to stand firm. 14 Stand therefore, having fastened on the belt of truth, and having put on the breastplate of righteousness, 15 and, as shoes for your feet, having put on the readiness given by the gospel of peace. 16 In all circumstances take up the shield of faith, with which you can extinguish all the flaming darts of the evil one; 17 and take the helmet of salvation, and the sword of the Spirit, which is the word of God, 18 praying at all times in the Spirit, with all prayer and supplication. To that end keep alert with all perseverance, making supplication for all the saints, 19 and also for me, that words may be given to me in opening my mouth boldly to proclaim the mystery of the gospel, 20 for which I am an ambassador in chains, that I may declare it boldly, as I ought to speak.