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Surrounded: The War on Terror

September 19, 2009

Heard a sermon last week from Pastor Brady Cooper at New Vision Baptist Church here in Murfreesboro on spiritual warfare and, as is usually the case, my imagination ran wild.

Check out this clip.

Airstrikes over Vietnam.   Soldiers, on the ground, pinned down, fighting for their lives as the enemy attacks them from every conceivable angle.  Surrounded and without hope of escape, they’ve called in backup.

Moments later, it arrives.  Fire rains down from on high … the enemy, taken out by these lightning bolts from above.  Each unleashed upon a precise location that would allow for the soldiers’ escapes from the clutches of the enemy.

Surely, by now, you gotta see where I’m goin’ with this, right?

So – do you feel surrounded?  I do.  Hemmed in and fired upon.  Every day.

I mean, if you believe, as I do, that there’s a battle going on and that we’re on the ground … then you understand that, as Christians, we’re the foot soldiers … that we’re on the front lines.  And, if you’re paying attention, you’re hearing those shots ring out … you’re feeling the enemy fire whiz by from every direction, ripping into the grass and trees and make-shift shelters we’ve built and many times, into the very flesh of those we love.

Bullets and grenades, in the form of hurtful words, extramarital affairs, lost jobs, sick children … lies, pride, greed, deception, envy, anger …

viet80

American_soldier_in_Vietnam.

And we’ve all taken our share of bullets.   In fact, alot of us are full of shrapnel.  And we’re lying there, fearful, wounded, in our foxholes (i.e. offices, bedrooms) … our eardrums bursting with each explosion, sweating, bleeding, hurting … waiting for the inevitable … to be found out, descended upon, overtaken, imprisoned, killed.

You may think I’m going a bit overboard here … that my imagination has indeed, put in a little overtime.  And those of you that know me also know that where I’m concerned, yeah … it happens from time to time.  Rest assured, however – this isn’t one of them.  I really believe that if our eyes were opened to what’s going on all around us, we’d be terrified.

We’d find that we’re at war.

That we’re surrounded.

And that there’s no way out.

… Or is there?

Well, like the soldiers who called in these air strikes, we too have a direct line to deliverance – prayer.

With that in mind – when was the last time you wrapped your hands together around that radio and spoke to your field commander?

He knows your location.  He knows who is after you and how they plan to attack.   And He can get you out.  He’s just waiting for you to ask … and hoping you’ll call again before you need it.

—————————————————-

Like me, you’ve likely heard this analogy before.  It’s just how my mind works and how I visualize it happening all around me …  and when I revisited it at New Vision last week, I thought this time I’d get it down, in case there was someone out there who hadn’t put it together quite this way before.

And, while I’m at it, let me be also say that I’m no hypocrite – I’m as guilty as anyone of not spending enough time in prayer.

Anyhow … on a somewhat related note – I’m trying to figure out what to do/where to go with this blog.  New name, new look, new content.  I’ll still post thoughts like these – and likely, quite often.  Regardless of what it evolves into, faith will always be a big part of it. But, I’m thinking there needs to be more.  More of the day-to-day.  I’m tossing all these things around in my head and just waiting for that aha! moment … ’cause, I know if I force something that isn’t authentic and that I don’t enjoy into this space, not only will I not enjoy it and eventually cease doing it, you won’t read it anyway (as though anyone is reading it now, right?).

Gordon_Dalbey's_Healing_the_Masculine_Soul

Gordon_Dalbey's_book

So – any thoughts on spiritual warfare? On any of this stuff? If you wanna read more about it, there’s plenty to be found in a number of best-selling books, including John Eldredge’s classic, Wild at Heart or Gordon Dalbey’s Healing the Masculine Soul (left), among many others.

Love to hear from ya, as always.  Be blessed, have a great weekend and following week.  Leave ya with this from the Apostle Paul:

Ephesians 6:10-18

10 A final word: Be strong in the Lord and in his mighty power. 11 Put on all of God’s armor so that you will be able to stand firm against all strategies of the devil. 12 For we[c] are not fighting against flesh-and-blood enemies, but against evil rulers and authorities of the unseen world, against mighty powers in this dark world, and against evil spirits in the heavenly places.

13 Therefore, put on every piece of God’s armor so you will be able to resist the enemy in the time of evil. Then after the battle you will still be standing firm. 14 Stand your ground, putting on the belt of truth and the body armor of God’s righteousness. 15 For shoes, put on the peace that comes from the Good News so that you will be fully prepared.[d] 16 In addition to all of these, hold up the shield of faith to stop the fiery arrows of the devil.[e] 17 Put on salvation as your helmet, and take the sword of the Spirit, which is the word of God.

18 Pray in the Spirit at all times and on every occasion. Stay alert and be persistent in your prayers

10 A final word: Be strong in the Lord and in his mighty power. 11 Put on all of God’s armor so that you will be able to stand firm against all strategies of the devil. 12 For we[c] are not fighting against flesh-and-blood enemies, but against evil rulers and authorities of the unseen world, against mighty powers in this dark world, and against evil spirits in the heavenly places.13 Therefore, put on every piece of God’s armor so you will be able to resist the enemy in the time of evil. Then after the battle you will still be standing firm. 14 Stand your ground, putting on the belt of truth and the body armor of God’s righteousness. 15 For shoes, put on the peace that comes from the Good News so that you will be fully prepared.[d] 16 In addition to all of these, hold up the shield of faith to stop the fiery arrows of the devil.[e] 17 Put on salvation as your helmet, and take the sword of the Spirit, which is the word of God.

 

18 Pray in the Spirit at all times and on every occasion. Stay alert and be persistent in your prayers

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2 comments

  1. Jason – I saw your blog address on your facebook and just thought I’d take a look. I had no idea the depth of you faith or your gift of words. What an awesome illustration of the spiritual warfare that goes on everyday. I have always loved the thought of “putting on the armor of Christ’. I remember as a little girl, singing a song about the “belt of truth” and the “breastplate of righteousness”. It was so empowering and comforting as I would imagine putting on one piece at a time, armed with the “shield of faith” and the “sword of truth!”

    Over the last several years as I’ve seen many friends get married, have children and go through the change from our young adulthood to our ‘thirty-somethings’, it seems SO many of my friends and loved ones have suffered such anquish and heart break from deceit and affairs in their marriages. It is probably the thing that I am most prayerful for on a daily basis because I went through it, too. I married right out of college and was divorced in a year. It was such a devastating time for me – I was so young – but the Lord used that time in my life to transform me and turn my focus upward. And as my focus became on HIM then HE brought the man HE wanted for me into my life. He has taught me what Marriage is supposed to be and each and every day, I am thankful for the gift of my husband. So as I’ve seen my friends going through this, I have become so aware of how Satan sneaks his way into relationships and quietly destroys them. The ONLY answer is prayer – I just hope to encourage couples to pray… together, apart, FOR each other…encourage one another. There are temptations everywhere BUT prayer strengthens us and “covers” us and helps us to keep our focus on Him. If only people could know the beauty and the true gift it is when 2 people are fully committed to each other and will allow themselves to love each other the way that God loves us. There is no greater gift. Thanks for you post! I look forward to reading more!

    Julie


  2. […] post:  Surrounded: The War on Terror « growingUP Tags: case, church, cooper, cooper-at-new, imagination, murfreesboro, pastor, pastor-brady, […]



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