The following is an intro to a previous post, which I’d like to draw to the attention of new followers in particular. However, those who have faithfully followed me from around 2016 when this post was originally written, may also wish to read and refresh their memories.
Whilst I am happy to re-purpose old material, my main desire is to stir up your hearts and galvanise you into action with regards to prayer and intercession.
Given the condition of our world following Covid-19, the implementation of lockdown measures, and the threat of virus variants, I am sure you’ll agree with me that the call to prayer, the call to seek God’s urgent and merciful intervention, is sorely needed.
Do read and please act. Send Jesus your kneemail today!
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Que Sera Sera?
Have you ever looked at this world in despair?
I can relate!
It is a rare event when media reports on current events raise a smile from me, or a sense of belief that all is well with the world. I think I can honestly say that most times after listening to a news channel, or reading a newspaper, I feel disgusted, disquieted or depressed. And sometimes I can even feel ashamed to admit that I belong to the human race – in fact, somebody stop the world – I wanna get off!
The above CC0 image comes courtesy of Gerd Altmann at Pixabay.com
Our Heavenly Father planned for us to be conformed to the same image as his Son, Jesus Christ. In other words we are to emulate him.
However, our carnal flesh prefers to conform to the ways of this world. Now, the celebrity culture means many of us seek to live our lives as close as possible to those we admire and believe represents the epitome of success.
Jesus is, and was a celebrity in heaven, before he came to earth. However, he chose to set his privileges aside and made himself poor, so we could become rich in the things that truly matter, such as an eternal destiny beyond our wildest dreams, peace of mind, freedom from guilt and fear, hope for our future, and the absolute assurance of an Almighty God’s protection and provision.
Now in this current climate of the Covid-19 virus and the resulting havoc wrought by each nation’s lockdown measures, doesn’t this sound attractive?
Unfortunately, even though Jesus has already paid the price for us to have and enjoy an abundant lifestyle of Kingdom privileges, we have a spiritual enemy, who is determined that we should not.
So he fights. He intimidates. He lies, both about us and to us!
And when you measure the quality and effectiveness of our lives against the life of Jesus whilst he was on this earth, it would seem that Satan’s tactics are succeeding in most of our circumstances.
Dear reader, we can either remain passive, or fight back. We can either accept the status quo, or get on board with God’s programme and engage in spiritual warfare.
How do we do this?
In prayer! By standing our ground in faith. By choosing to live our lives as victorious overcomers.
So, are you praying?
Are you praying effectively?
Are you praying without ceasing (i.e. developing a consistent prayer lifestyle)?
Are you emulating Christ, or seeking to emulate an ungodly celebrity’s lifestyle?
If the former, you are ensuring a victorious future. If the latter, you are most likely heading towards a disappointing denouement.
Apoorva Gupta, a writer at the Thought Catalog, makes the following observation:
The choices you make and the decisions you take have a long lasting impact on your life. They make us special, put a bar of distinction between us and everyone else. Our lives are a series of choices we’ve made so far. We live with those choices for the rest of our lives.
[…] We can’t undo the past, but we can always learn from it. Choices are the building blocks of our lives and despite all the mistakes one makes, a new day brings with itself new opportunities and a whole new world of choices.
If you are interested in reading the rest of what Gupta has to say regarding how choices shape our lives, click here:
Reader – you have a choice. So, choose you this day whom you will serve, whom you will emulate!
Carol (aka Lady Cee)
Effectual, fervent prayer avails much!
Do you need a resource that encourages you to develop a consistent and confident prayer life? If so, don’t hesitate to check out the links below.
I recently came across an old journal entry and thought I’d share an edited version of it with you all. Hopefully, it will be of encouragement to someone.
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Yesterday I decided to put the phrase “victor or victim” into google and see what came up. I was surprised. There were a few blog posts on this, some of which I read then subsequently felt provoked to deal with my negativity once and for all.
It is hard to swallow the fact that I’m responsible for my own misery… that I have consistently made the choice to live in a perpetual cycle of anger, blame, resentment and unhappiness because of the mistreatment of others.
But I have to accept this.
I have to accept that although I cannot control what happens to me, what people do or say to me, what people think about me, I can control how I respond to the things that have happened.
It is a bitter pill indeed to swallow, to realise that me, myself and I have been responsible for years of wrong thinking, wrong attitudes and, wrong reactions. I have allowed other people to control my interior world (my thought life and internal responses) and I have allowed that interior world, to colour my views about myself, my life, my prospects, my future.
Yes – it is a bitter realisation indeed.
Now one of the posts I read gave a scenario about 2 single mothers who found themselves abandoned by their child’s father. The posts described how they chose to go through life thereafter. One emerged a victor and one became a victim. It was a matter of choice—pure and simple.
And so I decided yesterday evening that I was going to make that choice once and for all. I choose to be a victor!
I don’t imagine it will be easy. After all, I have ingrained, deeply entrenched negative habits. But, I am not fighting in my own strength and in fact, whilst I think about it, the battle has already been won. I just have to get on my battle gear and stand against the wiles of the Enemy, who just loves to goad me with his mind games.
Day after day he has told me (and will no doubt continue to tell me) that I am a loser, that I am rejected, disrespected, fighting a losing battle. But he is a liar. I am not a loser. I am going to win.
I need to win. Because there are other women out there who need my help, need me to share my insights and encouragement and wisdom and need me to motivate them, inspire them and support them.
And so Father God, I thank you for opening my eyes. I thank you for giving me your assignment to minister to wounded, hurting victims. Thank you for your promise to help me. Holy Spirit I thank you in advance and in anticipation of your help, counsel, direction and enabling power. Teach me. Anoint me. Help me. Give me new perspectives, new aspirations, new insights—a new victorious life!
I am excited! Excited to see how this turns out. Excited to see my life turn around miraculously and irrevocably. Excited to see lives that the Enemy has held in captivity turn around and be fully recovered from victimhood.
Things are going to change within me, within my life, within the lives of people around me to whom I have been assigned. This is a mega responsibility but it is also an honour and nothing will delight me more than to see women who have been held down, crushed and incapacitated by the Enemy coming out of captivity, being liberated, arising in strength.
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After writing the above entry, Maya Angelou’s poem StillI Rise came to mind. You can listen to, or read the poem here.
Serena Williams recited it before her Wimbledon finals match in July 2016. She not only won but achieved sporting history by matching Steffie Graff’s record of winning 22 grand slams.
Dear reader, if the above words from my journal entry speaks to you where you are at, if the message of my posts and the ethos of this blog (Women of Warfare!) resonates with you, may I take this opportunity to encourage you?
Like Serena Williams, you too can win. And you too can arise.
Now if you are a Wimbledon fan, or any kind of sports fan, you will appreciate that it takes more than talent or ability to win. It takes mental strength and determination.
Beloved Child of God, if you are going to win against the lies of the Enemy, if you are going to rise above your negative circumstances, if you are going to walk confidently in life as a victorious overcomer, then as the Word of God counsels, you need to be transformed by the renewing of your mind (Romans 12:2). You need to choose to focus your thoughts upon those things which are in line with God’s Word and his will for your life.
Dear reader, you can change your psychological history. It is a matter of choice.
Precious woman of God, you were created to be a victor. So choose to be the woman of God that He has called you to be – strong, merciful, loving, productive, wise and victorious!
No matter what you have suffered in the past, no matter what you may be experiencing now, choose to believe God’s Word over what the Enemy says or shows you, over what abusers, liars, mockers and scorners say and do to you, over whatever your negative life experiences have been.
Choose to arise. Choose to be a victorious overcomer.
Because as the L’Oréal advert says: “You are worth it!”
This Week’s Prayer Focus:
Let us turn our thoughts and prayers this week towards those who are emotionally unstable—whether for yourself, or for someone you know, or anyone in the Body of Christ who feels victimised by others, who feels oppressed by the Enemy, who feels downtrodden by and despairing of their life’s circumstances.
You have said in your Word that those who are strong ought to bear the burdens of those who are weak.
I want to thank you for the examples in your Word, which show us how to overcome in the battles of life. I particularly want to bring to your remembrance the account of Aaron and Hur, who held up the weary arms of Moses, so Joshua and the Children of Israel could prevail in battle (Exodus 17:8-12).
Thank you for this picture of intercessory warfare. Thank you for this beautiful example of saints in Christ coming alongside those who are weary, discouraged or defeated, in order to bear them up with our prayers, in order to support them with our love.
Father God, thank you for your Word, which is living and powerful and sharper than any two-edged sword. Thank you that when we speak your Word in faith, when we meditate upon it daily, it does not return to you empty and unfulfilled but accomplishes your purpose in and through our lives.
I ask that you help all those who may be struggling right now, to stand with confidence upon your Word. I ask that you help all those who are mentally or emotionally defeated to awake to the truth and miraculous power of your Word, to resist Satan’s deceptive lies and to break free from the captivity of the Enemy.
Holy Spirit, I ask that you come alongside those who are weak, weary and defeated. I ask that you minister spiritual strength, comfort and peace throughout the coming weeks and months.
Lord Jesus, I thank you that you are the captain of our Salvation. I thank you that you have already disarmed the principalities and powers that have set themselves against us. I thank you that you ever live to make intercession for us. Enable us through your prayers and through the help of your Holy Spirit to stand strong in battle, to walk through life as victorious overcomers.
Father God, I ask this in the name of our all-conquering King. I ask in the mighty, matchless name of your Son, Jesus. Amen.
Sunday’s Supplications invites you to not only read the posts but also participate in the prayers. Each fortnight, I hope to introduce a new theme and prayer focus. Why not become a part of the WoW! community by participating in these prayers? Let’s pray for ourselves and for each other. Let’s obey God’s command to watch and pray for all the saints (Ephesians 6:18).
You are welcome to print off and use each prayer provided, either verbatim or adapted for your particular circumstance. Even better, why not construct your own prayer and share with others by linking to this post.
Please note, you do not have to be a blogger to participate.
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Women of Warfare followers and readers have a wonderful and victorious week!
CREDITS: The above CC0 images come courtesy of Pixabay.com
I think of individuals who have been specially trained, who know how to handle themselves in combat.
Paul writes to the Ephesians and instructs:
Finally, my brethren, be strong in the Lord and in the power of His might. Put on the whole armor of God, that you may be able to stand against the wiles of the devil. (Ephesians 6:10-11)
When Paul gave this direction, he would have been thinking about the Roman regiment. And that’s where he got the idea to use these soldiers and their armour to illustrate the child of God in spiritual warfare, with spiritual weapons, engaging in spiritual combat.
The first thing we are commanded to do, is to be strong. Not wishy washy. Not crumbling at the first sign of confrontation, disappointment, or opposition. We are to be strong.
What does that mean – to be strong?
It means we are to be resilient. To be hardy. To be able to bear up under pressure. To have mental, emotional and spiritual stability. But we are not expected to be strong in and of ourselves (thank God!).
We are commanded to be strong in the Lord. Did you get that? Be strong IN the Lord. To be in the Lord means we are enclosed. It means we are covered. It means we are inside him. We are not on him, under him, beside him, behind him, but in him!
Yet life happens and life is not usually packaged in a neat pretty bow. Life does not offer us an even plane with idyllic circumstances. It offers curved balls. It serves us conundrums. It delivers mountain top experiences along with valleys of adversity and mind-boggling dilemmas.
Our heavenly father knows this. After all he is omniscient. So when he demands that we be strong, does this mean we should only show the “stiff upper lip” as the Brits used to say? Does this mean, never show emotion? Does this mean we should not be susceptible to tears, or discouragement, or fear?
Absolutely not! Jesus was our role model when he was on this earth. He wept over Lazarus. He grieved for Jerusalem. He was fearful of the agony of a cruel death and separation from his beloved Father. And I doubt anyone would describe him as weak!
And that’s why we cannot depend upon our own strength—since that strength can obviously be diminished by discouragement and difficulties. That is why Paul admonishes us to be strong in the Lord and in the power of his might.
What does it mean to be “in the Lord”? It means the Lord is the container and we are inside. It means the Lord is our fortress and we are within that fortress.
So dear child of God, do you understand what is being asked of you? Are you taking heed?
Be strong in the Lord!
Think of it another way. Think of it as abiding. Abiding in the vine. Abiding in God’s Word. Abiding in God’s presence. Living in such a way that you are vitally connected to the source of divine might and strength.
Be strong in the Lord and in the power of his might!
Spiritual strength is important. A soldier who falls to pieces mentally and emotionally is no good on the battlefield. A soldier who does not have physical stamina, is no good to his comrades or superiors. In fact he could become a liability.
Strength is required to withstand the Enemy. Strength is required to withstand the internal voices that assail you as you go about your daily living (Can I do this? Suppose I fail? Am I good enough?), or as you take your place on the battlefield of prayer (Has God heard my petition? Will God grant this request?).
Let me illustrate how Paul’s challenge to the Body of Christ, plays out in a real life scenario. I presume you are familiar with the Bible story of David and Goliath.
Do you recall the response of Saul and members of his army? These men were seasoned soldiers. These men were fighting veterans. And yet they were afraid. They were afraid because they approached the prospect of facing their enemy, in their own strength and might. And when it came to measuring their strength and their might against this gigantic Philistine, they believed they were no match for this enemy – and of course they were right!
However, David, an unseasoned, and untested and unorthodox warrior, saw himself as strong in the power of God’s might. He saw not the bigness of this giant foe but the greatness of his covenant-keeping God.
How did he come by such spiritual strength? How did he gain such supernatural confidence? Through regular fellowship with God. Through a committed ongoing relationship. And through experiences gained during his every-day life as a shepherd, as a worshipper.
In Daniel 11:32b, we are told: …the people who know their God shall be strong and carry out great exploits.
Without spiritual strength you cannot resist the Enemy. Without spiritual strength you cannot stand your ground.
Don’t waste time, don’t expend your energy fighting against people. It’s tempting yes, to use carnal weapons such as put-downs, arguments, hostility, withdrawal of love, etc.
It may even feel temporarily satisfying but use of such weapons will only dissipate your spiritual strength. Use of such weapons will only put you at odds with the Commander of our faith. Even worse, use of such weapons puts us in the same territory (i.e. on the same side) as our deadly Enemy.
Want to succeed this year?
Want this year to be better than those gone before?
Want to walk as a victorious over-comer?
Want to reign in your circumstances, instead of your circumstances ruling you?
Then develop your spiritual strength. Aim to be strong and let that supernatural strength, that sense of stability, that emotional and internal resilience be a product of God’s power and might. Let that strength permeate your life through your ongoing relationship with him.
And remember dear one, regardless of any negative circumstance you may face—you are more than a conqueror. So believe it, declare it, and walk confidently in this truth – today!
This Week’s Prayer Focus:
In accordance with Ephesians 6:18, let’s pray for our brothers and sisters in Christ (particularly those who’ve been imprisoned for their faith). Pray that we will be empowered by our relationship with God and will stand firm in the face of any attack by the Enemy.
Remember to protect yourself by putting on yourspiritual armour before entering the battlefield of prayer!
Father God in heaven, thank you for making us a partaker of your divine nature. Thank you for granting us all things that pertain to life and godliness through the knowledge of Christ. Thank you for equipping the body of Christ with supernatural weapons of warfare and with an armour that protects us from the onslaught of the Enemy. Help us to be vigilant, to be aware that Satan prowls around seeking to devour our faith and our confidence in you and seeking to prey on our weaknesses.
Lord Jesus, you are the high priest of our confession. We therefore declare with boldness that this year we will not be intimidated by, or slothful about the Enemy’s attacks against us and our loved ones. We declare that we are not ignorant of Satan’s devices and we determine in our hearts not to indulge in the use of carnal weapons but to submit our thoughts, attitudes and actions to the obedience of Christ. We apply the protective power of the blood of Jesus over our minds and over our lives, against which Satan and his cohorts have no immunity.
Lord, we pray for those brothers and sisters in Christ who are suffering persecution for their faith. We ask that you strengthen them with might by your Holy Spirit in their inner being. Cause them to hope in you and may that hope act as an anchor for their soul. Deliver them from evil. Let not the plans of the Enemy prevail against them or their families. Grant them the inner peace that transcends natural understanding.
Thank you Father-God for your goodness and mercy. Thank you for your unfailing compassion. Whether at liberty or imprisoned, we proclaim your sovereignty in the lives of your people and we declare your miraculous power is at work within our lives.
Sunday’s Supplications invites you to not only read the posts but also participate in the prayers. Each fortnight, I hope to introduce a new theme and prayer focus. You are welcome to print off and use each prayer provided, either verbatim or adapted for your particular circumstance. Even better, you can construct your own prayer and share with others by linking to this post. Please note, you do not have to be a blogger to participate.
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Women of Warfare followers and visitors be blessed and have a wonderful week!
CREDIT: The above CC0 image comes courtesy of Pixabay.com
Sunday’s Supplications invites you to not only read the posts but also participate in the prayers. Each week, I hope to introduce a new theme and prayer focus. You are welcome to print off and use each prayer provided, either verbatim or adapted for your particular circumstance. Even better, you can construct your own prayer and share with others by linking to this post. Please note, you do not have to be a blogger to participate.
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A Litany of Deadly Disasters
22 March 2017 – United Kingdom: terrorist attack takes place near Palace of Westminster (van and stabbing).
22 May 2017 – United Kingdom: terrorist attack in Manchester, following a concert (suicide bomb).
3 June 2017 – United Kingdom: terrorist attack at London Bridge and Borough Street Market (van and stabbing).
14 June 2017 – United Kingdom: devastating fire at Grenfell Tower (irresponsible policies, greed and cost-cutting).
12 August 2017 – United States of America: clash at white supremacists’ rally in Charlottesville results in death of a protestor (vehicle)
14 August 2017 – Sierra Leone: capital city buried under mudslide leaving hundreds homeless and approx 300 dead (catastrophic flooding raises risk of cholera).
17 August 2017 – Barcelona: terrorist attack against tourists in famous boulevard, Las Ramblas (van)
17 August 2017 – Barcelona – further attack when pedestrians at a seaside resort in Cambrils were critically injured (car)
18 August 2017 – Finland: terrorist attacks upon women in the streets of Turku (stabbing).
What next? Where next? Who next?
A Reminder of God’s Word
Are you fearful? Concerned about your loved ones? Afraid to go to work, walk the streets, holiday abroad, enjoy your liberty?
I admit to having my fears and concerns.
Listen to what the Word of God says:
You shall not be afraid of the terror by night,
Nor of the arrow that flies by day,
Nor of the pestilence that walks in darkness,
Nor of the destruction that lays waste at noonday.
(Psalm 91:5-6 NKJV)
For the eyes of the Lord run to and fro throughout the whole earth, to show Himself strong on behalf of those whose heart is loyal to Him.
(2 Chronicles 16:9 NKJV)
He frustrates the devices of the crafty,
So that their hands cannot carry out their plans.
(Job 5:12 NKJV)
A call to prayer
Are you concerned about what the world is coming to? Outraged by the ever increasing atrocities? Grieved at the pointless loss of so many lives?
O my soul, my soul!
I am pained in my very heart!
My heart makes a noise in me;
I cannot hold my peace,
Because you have heard, O my soul,
The sound of the trumpet,
The alarm of war.
(Jeremiah 4:19 NJKV)
I doubt there are many readers who have not been affected in some way by the feeling of utter helplessness regarding current affairs, the pathetic plight of disaster victims and the overwhelming sense of darkness in our world.
But there is good news dear one! There is one who is not helpless. There is one who is not overwhelmed. There is one whom we can call upon for divine protection. There is one to whom we can appeal for mercy. There is one to whom we can turn for miraculous intervention.
But are we too complacent, too preoccupied with personal problems to even bother? Are we too intimidated by the Enemy to petition our God?
Dear reader, have you heard the alarm, God’s siren call to prayer? (See 2 Chronicles 7:14).
This Week’s Prayer Focus:
Let’s ask the Holy Spirit to strengthen and comfort those who have lost loved ones through tragic circumstances. Let’s pray for divine protection for ourselves and our loved ones. Let’s call on our Father-God for mercy and deliverance from the evil plans of men, from the diabolical schemes of Satan.
WARNING: Do not enter this particular battle without first applying the protection of the blood of Jesus and putting on your spiritual armour!
I want to thank you for your unfailing grace and mercy. I want to thank you for your Word that directs me not to fear or to be afraid, since you are with me and you are my God. O Lord God, when my heart feels overwhelmed lead me to your rock of peace, envelop me with your awesome presence.
I ask Father-God that you grant me and my loved ones divine protection in accordance with Psalm 91 and I ask that you extend that protection to the lives of those amongst my blog followers and readers. Deliver us from evil Father-God.
Heavenly Father, remember those who have lost family members and loved ones in recent tragedies. I ask that you strengthen them during their time of sorrow. Deliver them from overwhelming despair. Shield them from bitterness, or condemnation, even hatred. Let not the will of the Enemy prevail in their lives. Comfort their hearts as they grieve and may they experience a peace that surpasses natural understanding.
Merciful God, we lift up our nations to you. We ask that you forgive our collective sins, which have opened the door to the Enemy. We ask that you have mercy upon us as individuals and corporately as a people. We ask that you disappoint the devices of the crafty, so that their hands cannot perform their evil enterprise. Summon your power O God and subjugate both our spiritual and mortal enemies.
Jehovah-Shalom, orchestrate peace and safety within our borders. We are persuaded that there is nothing too difficult for you, nothing impossible to you and we believe you have not only heard our petitions but you are also able to grant our requests.
We therefore ask in the matchless and mighty name of Jesus and thank you in anticipation of your goodness. Amen.
…praying always with all prayer and supplication in the Spirit, being watchful to this end with all perseverance and supplication for all the saints—
(Ephesians 6:18 NKJV)
Hello visiting friends and followers,
I’d like to introduce a new feature and I do hope you will not only enjoy reading the posts in this new category but will also participate in the prayers.
On checking my dictionary today for the definition of “supplication”, I learned that it is a humble and earnest request made to someone for something. Further, I discovered that the word has Latin origins (supplicare, supplicatum), meaning “to kneel”.
Perhaps the idea of offering supplications seems a little alien to you but, if you were to cast your mind back to some of those old fashioned films, you might recall seeing a king, or some other figure of authority seated upon a throne, and a subject kneeling before that person to beg for their own life or the life of someone else, or to plead for a favour on behalf of another.
Indeed, in the Bible, we read of a situation, where Haman who had plotted to exterminate the Jews, finds the tables turned upon himself and in desperation he offers supplications to Queen Esther, pleading that she save his life (see Esther 7:7).
As children of God, we have a Heavenly Father to whom we can address our prayers and offer our supplications. As members of the Body of Christ, we clearly have a responsibility towards one another, as indicated by Paul in Ephesians 6:18 (see above quote).
I want to be obedient and I also want to encourage others to obey God in this regard. Now if you are already faithfully praying for all saints, then that’s wonderful. Continue your good work. I’d consider it a real honour, if you would also join in with this initiative.
However, if you are a born-again believer and this is not the case for you (i.e. you have neglected your prayer life), then whoever you are, wherever you are and at whatever time you choose, will you commit to praying regularly for other saints, as directed by Paul?
I believe there is no distance in the realm of the spirit and so I open this invitation to anyone who’d like to join their pleas to God, with mine. Will you pray with me? Will you offer God your earnest supplications alongside me and others?
I’ll endeavour once per week to bring the focus and a sample prayer. You can use this to pray verbatim, or adapt it, or even (here’s a blog challenge), construct your own and link to this post. Please note, you do not have to be a blogger to participate.
Now please don’t be alarmed or concerned at the thought of committing yourself. Jesus himself said “the spirit is willing but the flesh is weak”. You can make your commitment publicly (via the comment box below) or you can do so privately in your heart. You can commit for a week at a time, a month, 6 months, or a year. You can renew your commitment as and when you like. It is entirely up to you. I will not be holding anyone to account. Your decision to participate will be between you and God, unless you choose to share what you are doing.
If you are new to praying regularly, so that you don’t feel overwhelmed, I encourage you to take this step one day at a time, or one week at a time, whatever feels comfortable for you. The aim is to increase our current prayer lives, or to establish a regular prayer habit if you don’t already have one.
Potential prayer warriors and interns, welcome aboard. Let’s build a praying community together. Ready? Steady? Go!
Please don’t forget to put on your spiritual armour before entering the battlefield!
This Week’s Prayer Focus:
Let’s begin with ourselves and ask God to increase our desire to pray and establish us in a lifestyle of prayer. And let’s ask him to do likewise for the saints represented amongst our blog followers and visitors.
Dear Father God,
I want to thank you for the privilege of being able to come into your holy presence and make my requests directly to you. I want to thank you for your promise to hear my prayers. It’s my heart’s desire to obey your Word, which requires us to be watchful with all perseverance and supplication for all the saints.
Father God, on behalf of myself and on behalf of my online brothers and sisters in Christ, who follow or visit this blog, I ask that you stir up within each of us a heart that is committed to obeying your command in Ephesians 6:18. I ask that you help us to establish a consistent, dynamic and fervent prayer life that is effective and avails much.
I ask this in Jesus’ name and thank you for granting my request. Amen.
Have you been encouraged to step up your prayer life? Would you like to become a part of the WoW! prayer community? Please let me know in the comment box below and don’t hesitate to share this post/invitation with your social media contacts.
CREDIT: The above CC0 Image comes courtesy of Pixabay.com
I’ve not written in my writing journal since 1stJuly.
I’ve not worked on my project since 30th June.
I’ve not been actively writing on my two blogs.
I’ve been lackadaisical for 15 days – possibly longer!
Even today, I didn’t feel like doing anything. Didn’t feel like pursuing my passion. Didn’t feel like writing.
At the back of my mind, I’ve known I should push past this feeling and just get on and do. I know when I put my mind to it that inertia flees and the interest returns. Even now as I write, I sense the spark of enthusiasm igniting. And, strange though it may sound, even my fingers feel exhilarated, as they move across the keyboard. I’m back – just like that!
So what kept me away?
At least that’s part of the story.
The other part is that the Enemy is at work. I know he is. I know he does not want me to succeed. He does not want me to fulfil my potential. He wants another of God’s protégés to go to their grave with their gifts and abilities, dreams and vision still sheathed, undeveloped, unexpressed and unused.
And yet, even though I’m aware of this, I give in to uncool feelings. I give in to my I-don’t-give-a-damn inertia of the moment and allow it to take me into extended periods of self-sanctioned slothfulness, or complacent inactivity. And whilst I’m doing this, I hear a little voice saying “I don’t care” and I listen to that voice and silently endorse its rebellious attitude.
But now, as I write, I realise that deep down I do care. I realise that voice was not me at all, or if it was me, then it was the voice of the old Carol, the non-productive Carol, the I-do-things-when-I-feel-like-Carol-and-right-now-I-don’t-feel-like!
I know when I behave this way that later I’ll be remorseful. Later I’ll beat myself up for all the time I’ve wantonly squandered, watching NCIS, or watching some other person who has fulfilled their dream, whether it’s purchasing a house in the country or abroad, or cooking their way to celebrity fame, or some writer whose script has been made into a film or TV programme. I know it but yet I give in to the voice and call of apathy.
And during this time, I surf. I stalk the sites of other writers and bloggers. Successful writers and bloggers. I read. I admire. And I feel jealous. I read. I admire. And I hope to one day experience similar success. One day!
But that day has not arrived yet.
I have no one to blame. No one to point the finger at, as the reason for my sudden stagnation. No one but me, myself and I!
I can’t even blame those who stir my anger, who orchestrate scenarios designed to humiliate, whose antics provoke me to sit and stew over the way I’m being treated, or grieve about my loss of self-esteem. I can’t blame those whose actions or words I’ve allowed to distract me from my goals and my determination and my vows of self-discipline; whose targeted tactics I’ve allowed to sap my motivation. I can’t even really say: “the devil made me do it!”
Because in reality I am more mature than that – aren’t I?
I know better than to give in to that listless, why-bother? mode – don’t I?
I know I should gird up the loins of my mind and let the negative thoughts go, let the offending persons go, whom the Enemy uses following key moments of achievement, sustained productivity, or exuberant success, to knock me off my man-made pedestal.
I know I should let them go from my thoughts, let them go from my desire for retribution, let them go from the un-Christ-like deliberations entertained within my heart. I know I should do so, and do so quickly, graciously, mercifully, the way God does for me, but to do so feels all wrong to my hurting heart, my wounded pride, my stomped-upon ego, my self-righteous sense of justice.
And that’s the issue.
The “me”. The “my”. The “myself”. The interminable preoccupation with “I”.
It’s an issue because God’s Word says:
I have been crucified with Christ; it is no longer I who live, but Christ lives in me; and the life which I now live in the flesh I live by faith in the Son of God, who loved me and gave Himself for me.
(Galatians 2:20 NKJV)
Christ decided that I was worth the cost of giving up his reputation, his equality and standing with God, so that he could fulfil his Father’s will and die for me, so I may experience Zoe life (the God-type of life), so I may experience reconciliation with God, so I may experience the stupendous, supernatural benefits of salvation.
Without Christ’s death, none of this would have been possible. And without Christ choosing to lay down his life and humbly submit to his Father’s will, there would have been no glorious resurrection.
Christ was mocked. He was rejected, he was falsely accused, even betrayed. But he found a way to rise above his circumstances, and fulfil his calling. Despite the misunderstandings. Despite the mud-slinging. Despite the malicious intent of people around him. Despite the Machiavellian manoeuvres of his arch-enemy.
This same Christ lives in me. This same resurrection power is available to me.
And so I have a choice. I can listen to the Enemy’s lies and suggestions and give in to the fleshly dictates of my heart, or I can do what I need to do—add works to my faith, add obedience to my knowledge, add self-discipline to my intentions and, having done so, emerge from the plots of pernicious folk, from the schemes and snares of Satan, from the inadequacies of Carol, as a purpose-driven believer, as a triumphant dream-achiever, as a victorious overcomer.
I can choose to be a victor.
By God’s grace I can, and by God’s grace I will!
Today, I choose to silence that rebellious voice. I choose to lay down my fleshly inclinations. I choose to rise up and resume my place as a victorious overcomer.
Lord, I choose to decrease and allow you to increase in my life. Father-God, let not my selfish will be done but your perfect will. Kingdom of God come, be manifested in my circumstances. Will of God be done, in and through my life, today, tomorrow and always!
“The only thing necessary for the triumph of evil is that good men should do nothing.” Edmund Burke
My previous post, Don Your Armour, reminded us all of Paul’s words in Ephesians 6:10-18, where he encourages us to put on the whole armour of God.
God’s armour comprises not only the six elements of protective armoury and offensive weapons but also the requirement that we watch and persevere in prayer (see Ephesians 6:18).
Jesus himself, warned that we are to ‘watch and pray’ – Matthew 26:41.
So what should we be watchful about?
Watch our hearts and attitudes. Proverbs 4:23 tells us we are to guard our hearts because it is from this central area (our inner being), that the current of our lives flow.
Watch so that we do not enter into temptation—the temptation to be apathetic, complacent, slothful. The temptation to complain, or give up on our stance of faith. The temptation to walk in disobedience or pride. The temptation to belittle others, gossip or judge.
Watch over the spiritual climate of your nation. Pray for your leaders, for those who occupy roles of significant responsibility. Pray for the liberty of Christians to live lives that are conducive to the moral absolutes of our faith.
Watch over members of the body of Christ—those in your fellowship, those whom you interact with in your day-to-day life, those bearing the name of Jesus in your nation, not forgetting those who are suffering in far-off lands.
Watch over the current affairs issue that tugs at your heart (e.g. brutality of dictators, persecuted Christians, the heinous crimes of sexual predators and religious extremists).
Watch over our loved ones. Be diligent to ask for God’s protection over them as they go to school or work, as they travel to and fro, as they engage with individuals, who may or may not mean them harm.
Watch over the happenings in Israel. Pray for that nation’s peace. Pray for the members of Christ’s body in that land. Pray for peaceful co-existence between believers in fellowships comprising both Jews and Arabs.
Why watch and pray?
Because, as Edmund Burke is attributed as saying (see above quote), the only thing we need to do for evil to prevail, is to simply do nothing!
Are you feeling helpless, even hopeless, about the injustices, mounting depravity and evils of this world?
Call on Jesus. Petition Jehovah. Summon the Holy Spirit.
We serve a God who is able to intervene, able to transform, able to thwart the spirits of wickedness that are at work in this earth.
Do you believe? If so, are you adding works to your faith? Are you praying?
Jesus asked: ‘. . . when the Son of Man comes, will he really find faith on the earth’ (Luke 18:8).
Well, what is your response?
More to the point, where will Jesus find you? Fighting in the field of faith, or despairing in the dungeons of doubt?
Children of the Living God, spirit-filled believers, Women of Warfare, come – let us do our part. Let us watch and pray!
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PICTURE CREDIT: the above CC0 Image comes courtesy of Jay Clarke at Pixabay.com
If you know your Bible and are familiar with teaching on prayer and intercession, then I’m sure you will have come across Paul’s direction to the body of Christ in Ephesians 6:10-18.
You will know that as members of the body of Christ, we are encouraged to put on the whole armour of God.
How do we do this?
Pretty much like everything else we have to do when it comes to the supernatural things of God’s kingdom. We do so by faith and through confession (speaking God’s Word).
How did you get saved? You spoke (confession), when you invited Christ into your life and asked him to become your Lord and Saviour.
You believed (faith) that he would hear you and respond.
Whether immediately, or eventually, you experienced the reality. You received an inward witness. You knew that you were saved. You knew that you were changed. You knew that by some marvellous and mystical act, the Spirit of Christ had taken up residence within you.
And in a similar way, that’s how you put on your spiritual armour.
Put it on daily. Put it on before you go out into the fray of daily living. Put it on before you enter the battlefield of prayer. Put it on through confession. Put it on in faith.
If you’d like help in doing this, here’s a prayer you may use.
Victorious overcomers, prayer warriors and prayer interns – have a blessed weekend!
Do you agree with this post? Let me know your response in the comment box below.
Behind some of the greatest spiritual awakenings in history was an unseen, unsung force known as ‘intercessors’. Many of the victories we celebrate in the open are first won by such people in the secret place of prayer.
(From: UCB Word For Today – 11 December 2016 – written by Bob & Debby Gass)
*Free postal copies of UCB Word For Today (UK and Republic of Ireland only) are available from: FREEPOST RLTX-ABUL-GRAR, United Christian Broadcasters, Westport Road, Stoke-on-Trent, ST6 4JF
Be sober, be vigilant; because your adversary the devil walks about like a roaring lion, seeking whom he may devour.
Resist him, steadfast in the faith, knowing that the same sufferings are experienced by your brotherhood in the world.
1 Peter 5:8-9
In my Bible (Spirit Filled Life Bible – NKJV), the above passage has the following explanatory footnote below:
Resist: The active imperative indicates an assertive stance against the Adversary’s operations. Because of the Devil’s aggressive hostility, Christians must be spiritually alert, not only to withstand his attacks (employing the armor described in Eph. 6:10-18), but in prayer and spiritual warfare opposing him.
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Are you asserting the authority Christ has given you?
Are you opposing the advances of the Enemy against you and your loved ones?
Don’t worry about anything; instead, pray about everything; tell God your needs and don’t forget to thank him for the answers. If you do this you will experience God’s peace, which is far more wonderful than the human mind can understand. His peace will keep your thoughts and your hearts quiet and at rest as you trust in Christ Jesus.
Philippians 4:6-7 (The Living Bible)
Prayer is the portal that brings the power of heaven down to earth. It is kryptonite to the enemy and all his ploys against you.
A: It is a 5min free write blog event hosted by Kate Motaung. Every Thursday Kate announces a one-word prompt on her blog at 10pm EST. The link-up is open for a full week, until the following Thursday evening. For further details on how to participate visit her blog at: Heading Home.
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Five Minute Friday Prompt: MIDDLE
Jesus. Me. Satan.
I’m in the middle!
Three distinct personalities. Three different beings.
To my right is Jesus—Lord of lords, Kings of kings, Prince of Peace.
In the middle is me—redeemed child of God.
And to the left, is him—accuser of the brethren. Deceiver. Thief. Father of Lies. The Evil One.
Either side of me, each personality vies for my attention. Each being seeks to influence my thoughts, govern my actions. One lovingly seeks to do so for my ultimate benefit and welfare. The other maliciously intends to steal my confidence, to kill my dreams, to destroy me.
Who wins? The one to whom I accede control. The one to whom I submit.
I’d like to think it is always Jesus. I’d like to say: ‘Jesus, of course!’
But unfortunately, that wouldn’t be the unvarnished truth. I have to admit that there are times, when I want to govern.
STOP [end of 5mins]
There are times when I question the Word and therefore I am questioning Jesus, since he is the Word made flesh. And there are times when what I want is more appealing to my ego, or my sense of comfort, or my understanding, than what Christ demands.
And so there is a tussle. There’s a spiritual wrestling between my soul (mind, will, emotions) and spirit, between my intellect or sense-knowledge, and the logic-busting, God-type of faith.
And what of the other side—Mr Diablo, Mr Evil personified? How does he fit into this scenario?
Well Satan, the devil, my enemy and God’s arch-enemy, hates me. So he seeks to muddy the waters. He schemes to undermine my faith. He challenges and sabotages my beliefs, which were based upon the unchanging promises of God’s Word.
His subtle questioning (Did God say. . . ?), his sowing of sneering doubts, (Well, God may produce miracles for Bible saints, or significant men of faith but what makes you think He’ll do it for you?), assault my mind daily, hourly, even at times moment by moment, until I begin to waver, until I, at times, agree with him and re-examine my thinking, my hopes, my expectations.
Dear reader, after years of suffering from this spiritual tug of war, I reluctantly report that sometimes it is Jesus and sometimes it is Satan.
But what about you? (I hear you ask). What about me? (I playfully respond).
Dear reader, I may well be caught in the middle but the truth is, there are only two master influences, two spiritual forces, at work in this world. The first and foremost is Jesus: the Son of God, the Living Word, the one who “upholds all things by the word of his power” (Hebrews 1:3).
The second (a significantly inferior power), is Satan: the one whom Jesus saw fall from heaven, the one whom Jesus conquered, the one whom Jesus disarmed when he arose from the dead in resurrection triumph and, stripping Mr Diablo and his evil principalities of their powers, made a public spectacle of them all! (See Colossians 2:15).
Even should I be deceived into thinking that I’m exercising my own will, governing my own life, the fact of the matter is, that in reality I am not! Either Jesus is, or Satan is (there is no middle ground)—and that goes for every single being upon this planet.
When I submit my thoughts, attitudes and actions in obedience to God’s Word then Jesus reigns. He is Lord of my life. But when I agree with the lies and suggestions of the enemy, which are contrary to the Truth, when I selfishly decide I want to do my own thing, then guess what? I come into agreement with the devil and I’m allowing him to manipulate my life, whether I’m aware of this or not, whether you believe it or not.
And if you don’t believe dear reader – think Adam and Eve. Think serpent. Think subtle deception. Think satanic manipulation, provoking self-willed disobedience. Think transfer of allegiance. Think paradise lost!
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CREDIT: CC0 Image – courtesy of Steen Møller Laursen at Pixabay.com
Have you ever looked at this world in despair? I can relate!
It is a rare event when media reports on international issues raise a smile from me, or a sense of belief that all is well with the world. I think I can honestly say that most times after listening to a news channel, or reading a newspaper, I feel disgusted, disquieted or depressed. And sometimes I can even feel ashamed to admit that I belong to the human race – in fact, somebody stop the world – I wanna get off!
When I see reports of police brutality against the mentally ill, or against black men, young girls and women, I feel outrage. When I hear stories about a high-ranking official’s debauchery and betrayal of trust (having participated in child abuse, or corruption or paedophilia), I feel sickened.
But however indignant and self-righteous I may be, it cannot compare to how God must feel about these things. Consider His response to Sodom and Gomorrah. Consider his attitude to the antediluvian days.
Are you troubled about these things? Are you concerned that the world seems to be getting darker and people more depraved, less tolerant?
If so, are you doing anything about it?
Me? (you ask). What can poor, inconsequential me do about this humongous issue?
Well, for a start, you can pray! You can stand in the gap for those individuals that touch your heart. You can intercede for those situations that vex your soul.
There was a time in biblical history, when God’s heart and compassion moved him to do something. He wanted to bring healing, peace and restoration to the offending circumstances that he saw. However, he could find NOBODY who cared enough to stand in the gap and mediate between Him and those people, whose lives were at odds to his standards, whose lives were being insidiously influenced by the Enemy.
Do you care? And if you do, do you care enough? Are you willing to take time out of your charmed lives to pray? Are you willing to set aside your own disappointments, discouragement or despair to send God fervent petitions on behalf of others?
If you are a member of Western civilisation, are you able to acknowledge that you are better off than a great many others?
Consider refugees living in cramped muddy conditions in a country that does not really want them. Consider those fleeing torture, or risking their lives and the lives of their children in vessels that are not sail-worthy, in order to preserve their lives, in order that they may enjoy liberty, freedom of speech, or freedom of religion. Consider parents in the developing world who don’t know where their next meal is coming from, who don’t have the means to feed and nurture their family properly.
And moving closer to home, think of the homeless sleeping on a piece of cardboard in freezing weather, think of parents whose children have gone missing, think of those parents who’ve suffered the anguish and pain of children who have been murdered.
Perhaps you are thinking: Lady Cee, prayer is not my calling. I leave that sort of thing to my church prayer group, to those who feel called to the ministry of intercession.
Well, my response to you dear fellow saint is: poppycock! If that is your honest belief, then you are mistaken.
Listen to this:
Then He [Jesus] spoke a parable to them, that men always ought to pray and not lose heart (Luke 18:1)
…when you pray, go into your room, and when you have shut your door, pray to your Father who is in the secret place; and your Father who sees in secret will reward you openly. (Matthew 6:6)
Watch and pray, lest you enter into temptation. The spirit indeed is willing, but the flesh is weak. (Matthew 26:41)
Praying always with all prayer and supplication in the Spirit, being watchful to this end with all perseverance and supplication for all the saints (Ephesians 6:18)
Continue earnestly in prayer, being vigilant in it with thanksgiving (Colossians 4:2)
Pray without ceasing (1 Thessalonians 5:17)
Now to whom do you think the above writers were addressing these words? To whom do you think Jesus was speaking? Is it only to those who feel called to prayer and intercession? No my dear friend. If you are a born-again, blood-washed child of God, if you consider yourself to be a member of the body of Christ, then God’s Word is being spoken to you!
Only deception by Satan, or ignorance of the Word of God and of who you are in Christ, or utter selfishness, or slothfulness, stops us from obediently taking our place on the battlefield of prayer.
So now you know!
And now that you know, what will you do? Will you care? Will you allow compassion for people and outrage against the Enemy to propel you to your prayer closet?
I am praying and trusting God that it will.
WoW! followers and visitors, to those of you for whom this message is pertinent, my prayer is that you will not just read this post and go on your merry little way. My prayer is that you and I will hear the cry of our Father God’s heart and respond to his desire for someone to stand in the gap.
Today, I am challenging you and I am challenging myself to make a choice. Choose to be a mediator! Choose to stand against the exploits of the Enemy! Choose to care and pray!
And for those of you who are diligently praying, be encouraged – your efforts will be rewarded. Just continue the good work.
How do you respond to disturbing world events? Has this post inspired you to act differently? Please let me know your response in the comment box below. I look forward to hearing from you.
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PHOTO CREDITS: all the above photographs are CC0 images – courtesy of Pixabay.com
SCRIPTURE REFERENCES: the above biblical texts have all been taken from the New King James version
The other day I came across a book I’d bought. It was the Bloomsbury Good Reading Guide – What To Read And What To Read Next. I’d bought it way back in 2003 because I had a desire to become more widely read. Now over a decade later, I’ve neither read it, consulted it, or used it in any way, shape or form.
Do you have books on your shelf that are unread, or only partially read? What about the greatest Book of all books – your Bible, the Word of God? How often do you read it?
A much-loved and much-read book
Once upon a time, when I first made a serious commitment to the Lord, I had a brown leather-bound King James’ Bible which was so well-used, its pages became dog-eared and fragile. To make matters worse, the binding began to disintegrate and quite a few pages subsequently become loose. I resorted to using sellotape to repair torn pages, causing some leaves to cleave obstinately together from the sticky residue of the sellotape applied.
I loved that Bible and whilst I may not have known the actual reference for a particular scripture verse when quoted, I knew whereabouts in my bible I could find it (i.e. whether Old or New Testament, which book and the general location on page). This old bible was annotated, arrowed, circled, cross-referenced, highlighted, underlined and every blank space (front and back) filled with notes— choruses, definitions, prayer reminders, any valuable nugget I could record. That old bible meant just as much to me as an old favourite toy or teddy bear can mean to a young child and it was a tug for me to finally let it go and move on to a new one.
A neglected book?
Now recently I’ve read various posts challenging and provoking Christians to read their Bibles regularly. As prayer warriors, the spoken Word of God is an essential part of our armour—it is the sword of the Spirit. However, we cannot declare, proclaim, or pray God’s Word with confidence, if we do not know what it says.
If we are going to be effective as prayer warriors, if we are going to reign victoriously over our circumstances, if we are wanting to appropriate this abundant life that Jesus Christ paid such a dear price for us to have and enjoy, then we need to be familiar with, and understand God’s Word. The onus is therefore upon us to read, meditate upon and study the Bible.
Going back to the Bloomsbury guide referred to at the beginning of this post, I’m sure there are dozens of books this guide could point me to, which would enrich my reading repertoire and thus assist my aims and ambitions as a writer. Whilst it remains on my bookshelf unread however, I cannot avail myself of its commentaries, editorial suggestions and literary expertise.
Likewise, as Christian believers, as prayer warriors, our ability to become intimately acquainted with God, our ability to know His will, plan and purpose for our lives, our ability to withstand the lies and wiles of the Enemy, to pray and intercede effectively, is dependent upon how much of God’s Word we know, understand, put into practice and stand upon in faith.
And so fellow believers, if you are guilty of habitually neglecting God’s Word, please be aware that you are walking around with a blunt sword. Please be aware that a vital element of your armour has become useless. Please be aware that without the complete armour (as described in Ephesians 6:11-17), you will not have the spiritual strength to resist Satan’s schemes and strategies unleashed against your life and against the lives of your loved ones.
The last word
Women of Warfare followers and visitors, if Jesus has the words of eternal life (John 6:68), if God’s Word is to be effective as a lamp to your feet and a light to your path (Psalm 119:105), then I would encourage you to take stock of your personal engagement with God’s Word and if deep down in your heart, you know it to be lacking, then make amends. Don’t delay, don’t ignore, don’t make excuses. It could be a matter of life and death—the health and vigour of your spiritual life and the putting to death of carnality!
If you’re familiar with the various types of cop dramas on TV, the above phrase will not be unfamiliar to you. For those of you who do not recognise, or know what this phrase means, it is used by the police fraternity to inform other members that one of their own has been shot, maybe even fatally wounded.
I want to borrow that phrase and apply it to the wounded saints and warriors within God’s Kingdom. I want to flag up those people within the Body of Christ (including myself), who are currently hurting, particularly those serving at the frontline as prayer warriors, or ministry leaders. Man down!
There are men and women, who in the line of duty have been targeted by the Enemy. His aim is to distract, discourage and dishonour. Man down!
I have walked with the Lord for a few decades now. My particular path, foreordained by God, has been an arduous, rough and largely lonely one, since friends are few, family members are preoccupied and the fellowship of believers oft times cliquey. Apart from the companionship of my husband, it’s been a solitary pilgrimage. In picking up my cross to follow Christ, I’ve traversed a hostile terrain, one charted by sustained unpopularity and systematic assassination of my character. Man down!
My path has led me into Enemy territory – towards mountains of adversity, across the Great Sea of Sorrow and through the Valley of Achor*. Man down!
I have cried over the perpetual and malicious cycle of mockery, scorn and derision. I’ve sighed at the shrine of sabotaged dreams, mourned at the monument of missed opportunities and crawled in the dust of punctured self-esteem. Man down!
No doubt, as I continue along this pathway, I will still at times struggle with seasons of self-pity, still have to wrestle with promises-of-God fatigue and still have to cope with days of despair.
I know without a shadow of doubt that no matter how many times I must circle the desert because of disobedience, no matter how many times I must walk through the wilderness because of wilful rebellion, no matter how often I must engage with the Enemy of my soul who prowls and roars, waiting to pounce on his prey – because the Lord my God is with me, I will arise (Micah 7:8).
I know that when I choose to discard the spirit of heaviness and wrap myself within the garments of praise, God’s strength will empower me to rejoice in him (Philippians 4:4), to continue to rejoice in hope and to be patient during trials and tribulation (Romans 12:12). Warrior arise!
I know that when I tear my eyes away from my circumstances and keep them focused upon the God of my salvation and upon his promises, He will keep me in perfect peace (Isaiah 26:3). Warrior arise!
I know that whenever I call upon him, my awesome God will rend the heavens, ride upon the wings of a swift wind and rescue me from the schemes, snares and strategies of Satan (2 Samuel 22:7-20). Warrior arise!
I know that my God will cause all things (the good, the bad, and the ugly!) to work together for my benefit (Romans 8:28). Warrior arise!
I know that because Jesus loves me, and laid down his precious, sinless life for me, I am more than a conqueror (Romans 8:37). Warrior arise!
I know that no weapon forged against me will prosper, that the weapons of my warfare are not carnal but mighty in God and are capable of pulling down strongholds (Isaiah 54:17; 2 Corinthians 10:4). Warrior arise!
And because I know that greater is he that is within me than he that is in the world (1 John 4:4), because I know Jesus has given me authority over all the power of the Enemy (Luke 10:19), I have determined in my heart (whether I walk through green pastures, or through the valley of the shadow of death), I will put on my spiritual armour. I will take my place on the battlefield of prayer and I will resist the wiles of the evil one. I will stand in the strength and might of my God and assert the victory of Christ’s resurrection life and power (Ephesians 6:10-11).
I will, as God’s flawed but feisty warrior get up from the dust heap of defeat and discouragement—and I will arise!
Halloween. It’s that time of the year again where witches and warlocks roam the earth – and I’m not referring to the ghoulish fancy-dressed men, women, boys and girls who indulge in Halloween parties and neighbourhood trick-or-treat visits.
I’m referring to the spiritual underworld, comprising evil spirit beings and their flesh-and-blood counterparts, who gather in covens and secret societies to worship Satan, practice their noxious arts and target Christian leaders.
The only thing necessary for the triumph of evil is for good men (and women) to do nothing.
So what can we do?
We can repossess this 2-day event, which Pope Gregory III had appropriated for the Church calendar. No need to stand helpless and watch the Enemy commandeer this historically hallowed occasion for his purpose.
As women of warfare we can resist Satan’s insidious ploys to spoil, sully and snuff out the lives of God’s creative masterpiece – us! Men, women and children put on this earth to reign, rule and usher in His Kingdom of righteousness. We can thwart our Enemy’s attempts to extend the reach of his foul kingdom.
We can PARTY:
Hold a Hallelujah party. You can make it low key, or a full blown fiesta – the choice is yours. Make it a time of celebration, fun and thanksgiving. It can be adults only, include children, or it can be a private affair – just you and the Lord.
Can’t have a party on your own you say? Yes, you can! It’s a wonderful opportunity to get together with God, link up with Jesus and become better acquainted with the Holy Spirit. And anyway, who says you can’t party on your own? How many times have you held a pity party? Did you invite anyone else along? No? I rest my case!
We can PRAY:
Ask God to divinely protect you, your loved ones, colleagues, friends and neighbours. Stand in the gap for members of your local fellowship, prominent Christian leaders and their families.
Entreat your Heavenly Father to protect your nation, to avert or diffuse any hidden dangers within its borders. Plead the protection of the precious blood of Jesus over your district’s transport network, seas and skies, school grounds and university campuses.
Petition Abba Father to grant journeying mercies to your friends and loved ones. Request peace, divine protection and an assurance of his presence for overseas missionaries.
Solicit Almighty God to deliver you from the schemes, snares and strategies of Satan.
Thank Jehovah for his daily mercies, for preserving our lives to date, for granting us authority over all the power of the Enemy and for his promise that the gates of hell cannot and will not prevail against the church that is established upon revelation truth.
We can PROCLAIM:
At Hallelujah parties or church gatherings, speak out with boldness. Shout your praise declarations. Pay tribute to the goodness of our great God. Encourage and make room for your children to do the same. After all, Psalm 8:2 (NKJ) says:
Out of the mouth of babes and nursing infants
You have ordained *strength (i.e. praise)
Because of Your enemies,
That you may silence the enemy and the avenger.
*According to the Greek Bible from which Jesus quoted, a better translation of the word “strength” is praise.
Dear reader, please understand, I am not denying the underlying darkness of this cultural tradition. I am simply saying enough is enough! Why should we continue to allow our voice to be silenced, the Christian heritage of our nations to be eroded? I’m saying let’s take a stand. Let’s frustrate the forces of darkness with our praise, our prayers and our proclamations.
Instead of shunning this day as a time of consummate evil, let’s seize this moment, this opportunity, as another occasion to celebrate our Lord, who triumphed over the devil and over his realm of death and destruction.
To the children/parents that come knocking at your door this year, why not add a spiritual element to any treats you offer? For UK residents, you can take advantage of a free resource, The Bag of hope, available from United Christian Broadcasters (UCB). There is no limit to the number you can order. However, post and packing charges will apply.
For those not residing in the UK, perhaps you can obtain some simple tracts, or other Christian resources for children and make little goody-bags. Whichever option you choose, pray over these bespoke bags, asking God to prepare the hearts of recipients, so they are open to His gospel message.
Finally, share this post and spread the word to your Christian friends, family, followers and social media connections. Help make the weekend of 30 October – 1 November 2015, the biggest celebration of our King of kings, and Lord of lords. He is surely worthy – don’t you think?
WARNING: please ensure that you seek God’s divine protection in accordance with Psalm 91 and apply the blood of Jesus to your life and the lives of your loved ones, before attempting to battle with the Enemy and his evil forces of darkness.
What do you think about when you consider a warrior? Do you see someone like Boadicea? Deborah the prophetess, or David in the Bible? How about yourself? No? Well why not?
The Bible says the Kingdom of God suffers violence and the violent take it by force (Matthew 11:12). Of course it’s not saying you are to go out and mug anyone! It does however imply there will be a perpetual fight on our hands. Ephesians 6:11-18 is even more enlightening. It states categorically that we are in a fight and that our fight is not with humans but with evil spirit beings – super-powers! Aargh! Potentially scary stuff!
Yet there’s no need to be afraid. We’ve been given spiritual armour and this armour not only protects us, but also enables us to go on the offensive against the Enemy (aka Satan). Once you are on a battlefield there is no going back. Once you are confronted with the enemy, there is no retreating. You have to stay, fight and conquer, or you could end up getting wounded, or even die.
Whether you like it or not, believe it or not, as Christian women we are in a battle. By virtue of the fact that we are Born-again believers, Disciples of Christ, Followers of God, that makes us the Enemy’s target. And so we have no choice but to fight (either that or risk being trampled on). The great news for us is, it is not a fair fight! We have already been given the victory. Jesus did that for us. We merely have to enforce that victory because believe me the Enemy will not give up, or lay down and die. He’s been around a long time. He’s aware that some of us don’t really know who we are in Christ, or realise the authority and power we have been given, or that some of us don’t have the tenacity to stay the course. And so, even though he knows we have the advantage, he calls our bluff. He tests us. He attempts to wear us down. And we can be our own worst enemies.
We fail to turn up to training camp, or we forget/fail to employ what we learned in training camp. We are afraid our weapons will not work, or that our authority will be flouted (Jesus I know and Paul I know but who are you?). And when the Enemy resists us (because really, what enemy is not going to give it all he can in order to win – even if he is outnumbered, or knows he has already lost?), I repeat, when the Enemy resists us, we fail to stand our ground and inadvertently or voluntarily give it up. And of course Satan is going to take it. If the boot was on the other foot wouldn’t you?
But giving up that ground is costly. That ground represents you, your loved ones, your church members, those people within the sphere of your influence. People who may not survive, or flourish, or escape eternal damnation without your prayers. That ground represents your God-given dreams and aspirations. And so, I would encourage and exhort you dear precious women of God to become women of warfare. Like the apostle Paul, I would urge you to lay hold of eternal life, to fight the good fight of faith and keep on fighting. Get violent (i.e. get fervid and forceful). Take what belongs to you (your blessings, your destiny, your joy and peace of mind, your victorious overcoming lifestyle) and hold onto it with all your might. Grab that spoil. Dance your victory. Sing your songs of triumph. Shout your testimonies regarding the goodness and greatness of God – like Miriam, like David, like Deborah.
Don’t be afraid because the Lord your God is with you. You are more than a conqueror – this means you have already won! I repeat. Get violent. Vent your godly fury against the Enemy and his cohorts. You have the members of the Godhead on your side. You have legions of angels surrounding you. You have a great cloud of witnesses (our predecessors of faith) cheering from the sidelines. So, go girl! Go get (and hold on to) the abundant life you deserve.