I Timothy 6:11-12 (MSG)
But you, Timothy, man of God: Run for your life from all this. Pursue a righteous life—a life of wonder, faith, love, steadiness, courtesy. Run hard and fast in the faith. Seize the eternal life, the life you were called to, the life you so fervently embraced in the presence of so many witnesses.
Woke up today with “Fight Song” in my head by Rachel Platten playing over and over in my head. Blame it on my teenagers if you will, the lyrics of this secular song are on instant replay today. “This is my fight song, take back my life song, prove I’m right song, my power’s turned on, starting right now I’ll be strong, I’ll play my fight song, and I don’t really care if nobody else believes, cause I’ve still got a lot of fight left in me.” The words offer encouragement. I wish more songs offered by the world would make an effort to equip young people rather than call them into darkness and promiscuity. “Like a small boat on the ocean, sending big waves into motion. Like a single word can make a heart open.” The good fight of faith often makes one feel like a small boat in a vast ocean. You don’t really feel like you are doing anything but the ripple created by your one step is resonating out across the water. Faith is worth fighting for. There are days when it is hard to hold on to that invisible rope that keeps us anchored to confident hope. (Hebrews 6:19) Whether the enemy we face is real or perceived and if we can see him or not, it is a challenge to pursue a life of righteousness in a world that hates Jesus. We must decide each day to run hard and fast in the faith. We must seize the life the Lord has called us to. A life that must be fervently embraced though many would rip it from our desperate arms. To acknowledge Jesus Christ is to admit that there is sin that needs a Savior. It is to say that He is Lord.
In a fight, one must never let their guard down or there is the potential for ambush. The enemy is like a thief looking for an open door or window to crawl through and wreak havoc in someone’s life. Those who have accepted Jesus Christ as Savior and Lord have more to lose than anyone else. They have the Keys to the Kingdom. The potential to lead others into the Light. The enemy wants what you have. If he can’t have it, then he doesn’t want you to have it either. Victory is yours! Don’t forfeit it to fear, doubt and worry but secure it by faith. The thing that we fight for is not against the world or other people but ourselves in the forfeiture of self. Today, I am singing my own “Fight Song” it is my “take back my life song”. “I don’t really care if nobody else believes cause I’ve still got a lot of fight left in me.” Do you feel that way today? If nobody else believes in Jesus are you still okay with your faith? Enough to fight for it?
Galatians 5:16-18 (MSG)
My counsel is this: Live freely, animated and motivated by God’s Spirit. Then you won’t feed the compulsions of selfishness. For there is a root of sinful self-interest in us that is at odds with a free spirit, just as the free spirit is incompatible with selfishness. These two ways of life are antithetical, so that you cannot live at times one way and at times another way according to how you feel on any given day. Why don’t you choose to be led by the Spirit and so escape the erratic compulsions of a law-dominated existence?
To live freely, animated and motivated by God’s Spirit. It sounds good but it is a fight to the finish with our flesh day by day. We have total victory if we choose to stand firm in our faith. However, no matter how grounded and rooted one may be in the Word of God and filled with His Spirit – there is still an ongoing battle within us each and every day. Will I trust the Lord today? Will I walk His Way or choose my own path? Will Grace cover the days that I choose to do my own thing? Will today be the day I choose righteous obedience? Will I take a stand? The longer it takes for victory to find us the more inclined one becomes to leave their battle post, at least that is how I feel some days. I want God’s Power in my life. I want all the things that the Lord has promised me. I must live by faith to make the impossible possible. I must convince my mind and body to agree with the outcry of my heart and soul. It is a fight. Every day demands a choice. Do I stay or do I go? Is what I believe worth fighting for? The trouble is to turn back seems so easy. We are encouraged to do so by those who do not see the potential in a faithful outcome. They do not have hope so laugh at ours discrediting it as radical and irrational. I must admit some days this thing called faith seems a little crazy. Hope seems so far away. But I have found it to be worth it every time I stick it out in the Spirit and stand on His Word so I keep singing my fight song.
Ephesians 6:11-13 (MSG)
And that about wraps it up. God is strong, and he wants you strong. So take everything the Master has set out for you, well-made weapons of the best materials. And put them to use so you will be able to stand up to everything the Devil throws your way. This is no afternoon athletic contest that we’ll walk away from and forget about in a couple of hours. This is for keeps, a life-or-death fight to the finish against the Devil and all his angels. Be prepared. You’re up against far more than you can handle on your own. Take all the help you can get, every weapon God has issued, so that when it’s all over but the shouting you’ll still be on your feet.
The battle of faith is life or death. You cannot see the adversary but he is very real. Just challenge him with faith and see what happens. All hell will break loose in your life, even so you will be victorious. Just as the wind and waves raged around the boat where Jesus slept, so the storms of life. We must remain calm. (Exodus 14:13-14) That is what the Lord kept telling the Israelites. Time and time again God performed miracles, signs and wonders in their midst and gave them great victories but they still rebelled over and over. What’s up with that? What’s up with you and me? Every good gift in our life is from God the Father who wants to bless us. Even in our sin, He gave His Only Son so that we could live with Him forever. I would not give one of my children for anyone and I have five. I struggled when my children decided to be organ donors even though I am one myself because I cannot bear the thought of their bodies harmed in any way. Yet God gave His ONE and ONLY Son to be ridiculed, tortured, and crucified for our sin. How can I not fight for faith when it costs so much? Well, I don’t every day and some days give in to my own selfish nature and emotional overtures. Thank God for His Grace, Mercy and Love that reminds me daily that I can come back to Him even when I fail.
The Lord goes before us. He has recorded every single day. (Psalm 139:16) This includes the challenging ones. The days that we fall short. The days we are weak. The days we give up. He still went before us anyway supplying everything we would need to come back the moment we see the error in our way and repent. He told the Israelites go ahead and fight because you already won the battle. God told them that He went ahead and fixed the fight but they still wouldn’t go. (Deuteronomy 1:29-31) Faith says go ahead. I have already been there. Confident hope takes us there. The battlefield is no place for fear because that means there is a void in our faith. We must build ourselves up in holy faith and confidence that God indeed went in before us and go only when He says go. Those who forfeit the fight to fear will not get the promise. All the faithless fighters died outside the Promised Land. (Joshua 5:6)
Joshua 23:4-11 (MSG)
“Stay alert: I have assigned to you by lot these nations that remain as an inheritance to your tribes—these in addition to the nations I have already cut down—from the Jordan to the Great Sea in the west. God, your God, will drive them out of your path until there’s nothing left of them and you’ll take over their land just as God, your God, promised you. Now, stay strong and steady. Obediently do everything written in the Book of The Revelation of Moses—don’t miss a detail. Don’t get mixed up with the nations that are still around. Don’t so much as speak the names of their gods or swear by them. And by all means don’t worship or pray to them. Hold tight to God, your God, just as you’ve done up to now. God has driven out superpower nations before you. And up to now, no one has been able to stand up to you. Think of it—one of you, single-handedly, putting a thousand on the run! Because God is God, your God. Because he fights for you, just as he promised you. Now, vigilantly guard your souls: Love God, your God.”
As Joshua encourages the people once again to go into the Promised Land, it is a giant do over. This was the Lord’s intent for every single person who left Egypt. Not everyone made it. Those who refused to believe died in the wilderness. I don’t want to miss out on the godly potential for my life. I want everything the Lord has promised me even those things I am not yet aware of. We must take a step back and look at our life in total perspective. Maybe God has told you to stand on faith and confident hope but you are not yet fully aware of its potential. Every time I have been faced with a spiritual battle, I can see the signs of preparation made beforehand. I felt the Spirit urging me to do something even though I had no idea what the point was I just did it. I share this to remind you that your potential in God is well beyond human comprehension, understanding and reasoning. You will likely never fully wrap your head around it until it is complete. We must obey the Lord and serve Him based on love and not perception to see the promise and purpose of our life. We have to submit our life to Jesus to have the faith required to stand against the enemy of our soul and step into our full potential. Faith cannot see what it hopes for but knows that it is there.
Joshua 6:2-5 (MSG)
God spoke to Joshua, “Look sharp now. I’ve already given Jericho to you, along with its king and its crack troops. Here’s what you are to do: March around the city, all your soldiers. Circle the city once. Repeat this for six days. Have seven priests carry seven ram’s horn trumpets in front of the Chest. On the seventh day march around the city seven times, the priests blowing away on the trumpets. And then, a long blast on the ram’s horn—when you hear that, all the people are to shout at the top of their lungs. The city wall will collapse at once. All the people are to enter, every man straight on in.”
Joshua 6:20 (MSG)
The priests blew the trumpets. When the people heard the blast of the trumpets, they gave a thunderclap shout. The wall fell at once. The people rushed straight into the city and took it.
The walls of Jericho fell flat. The people did not fight or tear them down. They simply did exactly what the Lord told them to do and walked into victory. You could say, they sang their own “Fight Song” that day as they praised and worshipped the Lord. We do not fight flesh and blood yet forget that many times as the enemy uses other people as pawns in his evil schemes and wicked games. If we could see Jesus on the forehead of every person we come in contact with it just might change our perspective. We must put on faith googles that see others like Jesus does. Helpless. Used. Abused. Desperate. Dying. God’s Ability is not based on mankind in any way, shape or form. If He has decided to bless you – it’s going to happen. You can count on it. You can stand on His Word. Live by faith clinging to confident hope because it is going to happen just like He said. Are you willing to do whatever it takes? Are you willing to stand down if necessary? Are you willing to be humbled? Are you willing to look like a helpless fool who is weak? That is what the Children of God must have looked like walking around the walls of a mighty city having church. I am sure the soldiers on the wall mocked them. The people came to the gates to laugh at them. But who was laughing when the walls came crashing down? We must become so confident in the Lord that our faith looks ridiculous to others. Our love is evident even among our harshest critics. Our obedience is not dependent on other people but strictly defined by the Word and Way of God. Walls will start falling around us. As every stronghold comes down…more and more faith will come rushing in until our heart is overwhelmed by God’s Grace and Goodness to the point nothing less will do.
Philippians 1:27-28 (MSG)
Meanwhile, live in such a way that you are a credit to the Message of Christ. Let nothing in your conduct hang on whether I come or not. Your conduct must be the same whether I show up to see things for myself or hear of it from a distance. Stand united, singular in vision, contending for people’s trust in the Message, the good news, not flinching or dodging in the slightest before the opposition. Your courage and unity will show them what they’re up against: defeat for them, victory for you—and both because of God.
It’s funny as I have read these words and shared them another song has come to mind. One that is sung in worship all over the world…”Love came down and rescued me… love came down and set me free… I am yours… I am forever yours. Mountain high or valley low…I sing out and remind my soul that I am yours…I am forever yours.” Today, we must remind our soul to fight the good fight of faith. It is worth the waiting to see victory in our life. Satisfaction and contentment are fully discovered when God prospers our life from the inside out. I know you are tired of waiting…so am I. But God promises that the potential in our life is worth it if we will just allow Him the time to work it all out. Do what it is that the Lord has told you to do no matter how insignificant or silly it seems – it is purposeful. God does not waste our good intentions and always will bless our obedience. We are in this together. We cannot forget that and must see that everyone is loved and cherished by the Lord even those who seem so unlovable. You were once that person with all the same problems. His Grace is sufficient for you to forgive over and over again. Manufacture love in your life for everyone do not take offense but stand on the promise that all things work together for those who love God. He is perfecting your way today. (Psalm 138:8) Sing your own fight song. Remind your soul. You belong to Jesus. His Love is more than enough. His Power makes us more than conquerors – if we will only believe. You “might only have one match, but (you) can make an explosion.” Yeah, this is my fight song! Take back my life song! My power’s turned on (thank you Lord) starting right now I’ll be strong! And I don’t care if nobody else believes because I’ve still got a lot of fight left in me!
My goal today:
2 Timothy 4:7 – I have fought the good fight, I have finished the race, and I have remained faith