Calling All Weary Warriors
It has come to my attention (looking in the mirror this morning and noticing fellow Warriors who are weary from battle) that there are some weary warriors out there who need encouragement. It appears that arrows keep flying, illnesses, physical limitations and/or injuries, tired limbs and weak knees threatens to disarm us. In the moments of physical exhaustion, we can forget to wear our spiritual armor of God because we are too tired to lift our arms up to place the helmet of salvation on our heads, and raise our shield of faith, let alone remember to fasten our belt of Truth and put in place our breastplate of righteousness. And let us not forget our shoes of peace and our sword of the Spirit, but when we are laid out flat in need of a nap, it’s hard to raise all that heavy armor and continue to fight.
Let us take a new perspective. Let us not consider our armor that heavy metal stuff from the dark-ages. Let us contemplate the spiritual tenacity of the Armor of God and let us envision the spiritual vigor of our Savior who, ultimately, fights the battles for us. Let us look to Him and ask Him to help us with His armor and ask Him to put us on His shoulders and carry us to victory. As we know, but sometimes we forget, it is God who fights our battles. It is God who gives us victory, and it is God who enables us to endure through the sacrifice and strength of His Son today, tomorrow and for eternity.
Recently, God reminded me that I must walk in the Spirit if I am to withstand the physical obstacles, if I am to not be thwarted by the limitations found within the physical. Shortly after His reminder, I was attacked with falling short of academic demands put on me in the doctorate program, bombarded with sickness, financial issues, followed by emergency dental work that had to be done on my right lower gum area – further followed by pain for a week that made it hard to sleep. Needless to say, it was all reason to get “down, grouchy, defeated and exhausted.” God reminded me, however, to press into Him as the pressures of the physical got heavier… and interesting thing happened, the physical circumstances got so heavy that I had to focus on the spiritual so that the physical wouldn’t thwart me, take me out, and render me helpless. It was like the only way out of the dark room was a light that led to a window, and that window was only a breath and prayer away. I couldn’t get up and walk to the window (literally; I was on the couch in pain), so I had to pray that the light would reach me where I lay.
Ahah! It was the same thing God spoke earlier (before all this happened), and I was reminded that I must walk in the Spirit if I am to withstand the physical pressures. I realized that God warned me before it happened, but I also thanked Him that He has been preparing me to learn to endure such trials. I only share all of this with you (not because I have attained it and licked it, beat it, and aced it all) because for the first time in my 37 years, I realized that I could walk in the Spirit while a physical elephant attempted to sit on me a crush me. I humbly share this with you. And I repeat, humbly share this with you.
I am not arrogant to the physical Hell that can be endured on this earth. In fact, while surviving flu-like symptoms and being in excruciating mouth-pain, I cried out to God to heal me and help me. I was not instantly removed from the pain or the sickness; I had to endure it. As my eyes watered for mercy, I knew that God was with me and He would help me through it. I knew He would bless me (in some way), minister to me and exchange my ashes for beauty. It was the realization of His Truth and His Goodness that enabled me to endure the physical.
Not that I have already obtained all this, or have already been made perfect, but I press on to take hold of that for which Christ Jesus took hold of me. Brothers, I do not consider myself yet to have taken hold of it. But one thing I do: Forgetting what is behind and straining toward what is ahead, I press on toward the goal to win the prize for which God has called me heavenward in Christ Jesus.
What amazes me is that during all of the details and circumstances that I mentioned, I clung to the Truth of His Word (that He works all things together for the good of those who love Him, that He has plans for me: to prosper me and not to harm me…. That He loves me….) It was His Truth that led me through the storm. And now, a week later, I have traveled through the eye of the storm. The 110 miles an hour physical winds still circle closely around me, but He has given me a peace that truly does pass all understanding. For a moment (a full day) I secretly waited for the old me to quit in defeat, go buy a bag of Dove Dark chocolate and crawl into bed, but the old me was gone. I called out her name and she did not answer. I pinched my arm a few times, and it hurt so I knew I was awake, but I did not recognize myself. I knew, logically, that I should have and could have justifiably had a good o’l fashioned melt-down, but the physical pull to do so was gone. I was existing in the spiritual! It was like an “outer-body experience,” but it wasn’t because I was truly still in my body: the pain and sickness confirmed that. What was different, however, is that the physical pull of the pain and the circumstances did not have the same old powers over me.
I share this only so that you may be encouraged to seek the Savior and demand and claim His spiritual strength to walk you out of the eye of the storm you are in. May you be inspired by who God is rather than focus on who you aren’t or what you don’t have (to deliver yourself). May you be excited about His fire and love for you. May you reach over and buckle up your faith-seat belt as you praise Him for the blessings you can’t see in the physical, but you now know they are there: right on the other side of this storm. And may you shout for joy from the ashes because you KNOW that God is present in the spiritual and He will be made manifest in the physical trials and tribulations of your every day like a Lion, proud, strong, and with full authority to protect you and deliver you and bless you… simply because you believed and called out His name!
It is truly an amazing thing to be physically limited (no finances, broken leg, swollen gums, and/or no strength in your limbs) to be able to imagine God and His Army putting His armor on you. You can close your eyes and imagine ministering angels helping you, putting your shoes of peace on each feet, wrapping their arms around you as they put on your belt of Truth or buckle it tighter because yours became loose, placing your helmet of salvation, wrapping your fingers around your Sword of the Spirit, securing in place your breastplate of righteousness and holding up your shield of faith for you. And then, they gather together to lift you up on Christ’s shoulders so that He can carry the weary warrior within you on to victory. The Lord is a warrior (Exodus 15:3).
If you are a weary warrior, may you rest in Him as you walk in the Spirit, securely atop the wide, strong, broad shoulders of our risen Savior who calls you according to His Purpose.
For the Lord Almighty has purposed, and who can thwart him? His hand is stretched out, and who can turn it back?
No plan of yours can be thwarted.
Why do you say, O Jacob, and complain, O Israel, “My way is hidden from the Lord; my cause is disregarded by my God”? Do you not know? Have you not heard? The Lord is an everlasting God, the creator of the ends of the earth. He will not grow tired or weary and his understanding no one can fathom. He gives strength to the weary and increases the power of the weak. Even youths grow tired and weary, and young men stumble and fall; but those who hope in the Lord will renew their strength. They will soar on wings like eagles; they will run and not grow weary, the will walk and not be faint.
The Sovereign Lord has given me an instructed tongue, to know the word that sustains the weary.
“Come to me, all you who are weary and burdened, and I will give you rest. Take my yoke upon you and learn from me, for I am gentle and humble in heart, and you will find rest for your souls. For my yoke is easy and my burden is light.”
Let us not become weary of doing good, for at the proper time we will reap a harvest if we do not give up. Therefore, as we have opportunity, let us do good to all people, especially to those who belong to the family of believers.
In your struggle against sin, you have not resisted to the point of shedding your blood. And you have forgotten that word of encouragement hat addresses you as sons.
You have persevered and have endured hardships for my name, and have not grown weary.
Kristina Seymour loves to encourage and equip women through the Word and through community. She is the author of The Warrior Mom Handbook, The Warrior Mom Leadership Manual, and The Warrior Wife Handbook; they are available at Amazon.com. Kristina's Bible studies are for women who desire to live by faith in the midst of their everyday lives. She has learned that women can't survive on caffeine and animal crackers alone; women in the Word and in community are united and able to stand firm. To learn more about Kristina, please visit her website, https://kristinaseymour.com/. God loves to share His story of love and grace through us all, and Kristina believes that everyone has a story to tell.