I love warfare prayers. I really do. I love praying in the authority Jesus delegated to us. In His Name. I have to. I believe we are called to. I believe when He gives and teaches you something, He intends for you to walk in it. I believe all this with my whole heart.
But sometimes when we are teaching and equipping in these ways, when we walk in these ways, we can start to think some things. Or people may from a distance, watching you fight and learning to fight themselves, start to believe some things. Some things about how all this works.
So here’s what I wanted to share for those of you in the storm right now. For those of you who’ve known storms.
Sometimes you’ve prayed all you know to pray, you stood strong and tall (maybe with knees quivering, but you did it!), and you told that destructive storm coming your way to stand down. You held up your sword and your shield and battled strong. You and your friends and family have been praying. Going to war. You laid your heart bare, you sought the Lord, and you did all you know to do. And that storm you saw coming doesn’t dissipate or reroute like you thought it would or should. In fact, you are led right into the middle of it. It comes anyways.
Just because you know about spiritual warfare and the authority you have in Jesus doesn’t mean the storm will always move. A lot of times, it does! Praise God! And we keep praying for that to happen! Because we walk in the authority of Jesus, and we are doing the things that He did and said those that follow Him would do. And we are praying against that which is destructive and hurtful. But sometimes it doesn’t stop. It doesn’t change course. Listen, things are dynamic, there are things at play we cannot know or see, and our God is relational, and nothing or no one ever said this was all transactional or formulaic.
Sometimes the storm comes anyway, and when it does, do we sit in failure for not praying the right way or enough? Do we put blame on others for not praying the right way or enough? Do we blame God for not answering those prayers or stifling that storm? Or do we do as Paul says, and after we’ve done all, stand. Get your armor on, plant your feet, and stand.
"Therefore put on the full armor of God, so that when the day of evil comes, you may be able to stand your ground, and after you have done everything, to stand." Ephesians 6:13
God never promised that every storm would reroute. I wish He had, but He didn’t. And when it doesn’t move, His compassion, strength, and nearness is there without fail, whether you feel it or not. Jesus certainly asked for another way when He cried out in the garden. His disciples expected a different way and couldn't fathom the way of the cross. But it’s in the storm that we have an opportunity to know and follow Christ in deeper ways. In hard ways. Sometimes that difficult thing comes right to our doorstep, and we learn to cling to our Savior, to praise Him in the storm, to fight clean and fight well, to facedown surrender to our God in new ways, to let Him clean and purify our hearts, to hide in the cover of His wings, to cry out for deliverance, to let our friends cry out with us.
And on the other side of that storm, with you in the arms of your Savior – either with you standing tall together, or your arm around His shoulder as He carries all your weight, or you completely off your feet cradled in his arms, or you slung over His shoulder in the fireman’s carry, however it happens – when the smoke clears, all is quiet, the enemy's binoculars are out looking for carnage, and you and Jesus emerge from that battle field, hell will tremble.
Nothing is wasted. What the enemy meant for evil and destruction, what was meant to take you out, God will turn for your good and His glory. Make no mistake. Vengeance is His. Hell will tremble.