This past week hasn't been easy. And there's no real way to explain how it has rocked my spirit and shaken my confidence...
Sisters, I believe I have had my first experience with spiritual warfare.
The Lord has led me to write this post from a very vulnerable place. I just pray that it will be an encouragement to those of you who have experienced (or will experience) the same thing.
What spiritual warfare meant to me before
Honestly, until now I don't think I ever really understood what spiritual warfare meant.
And perhaps I still don't. But I praise God that I haven't experienced it until now...
Jesus said, "In this world you will have trouble." (John 16:33) and I believe him. I just always thought he meant we would find ourselves in hard circumstances, from the death of a loved one or sickness or financial straits.
I never realized he also meant trouble in a different sense...
What I've learned this week
Last week, my intentions to help others through my blog were questioned very publicly.
The words stung and the publicity of it all hurt deeply.
As bloggers, we take huge risks each week by putting ourselves and our stories online for others to read. Since there are screens to separate us, it can be easy for someone to lash out with hurtful words without a second thought.
And the enemy uses that as an opportunity to strike us down. I believe it's his attempt to keep us from reaching others for Jesus.
Engaging in spiritual warfare as Christian bloggers
There are a few things I've realized about engaging in spiritual warfare as Christians sharing our message online:
1) It must be expected.
The enemy is threatened most deeply when we are closest to making a huge impact.
So he strikes at the moment when we may least expect it, and usually in a form we didn't expect. Like from another Christian blogger, or from a close friend or loved one.
It hurts, but we must be prepared for it.
After all, Jesus tells us, "If the world hates you, keep in mind that it hated me first. If you belonged to the world, it would love you as its own. As it is, you do not belong to the world, but I have chosen you out of the world. That is why the world hates you." (John 15:18-19)
2) We must be armed with scripture.
During the past week, a friend of mine shared Hebrews 11:6 that I thought was perfect.
It says, "And without faith it is impossible to please God, because anyone who comes to him must believe that he exists and that he rewards those who earnestly seek him."
This passage of scripture goes on to describe the faith of Noah and Abraham, who stepped out to follow God in faithfulness. They believed wholeheartedly that God would fulfill his promises to them.
As bloggers and as women of God, we must also believe the same is true for us! Remember Luke 1:45 says, "Blessed is she who has believed that the Lord would fulfill his promises to her!"
I'm also reminded of Romans 8, where we read over and over again that God has a purpose for those he has called: "And we know that in all things God works for the good of those who love him, who have been called according to his purpose." (Romans 8:28)
There's so much more to this... I would love if you would share your favorite scripture related to these topics in the comments <3
3) We need an army.
And by army, I mean community!
Last week would not have been a victory for me if not for the community I have... My husband most of all, but also several sisters in Christ who stood by me.
They each encouraged me in small ways, but the combination added up to a huge dose of exactly the support I needed. Praise God for these people in my life!
The same is true for each of us as we engage in spiritual warfare in our daily lives, and especially as bloggers. We must follow Christ's example and love one another (John 13:34). We must "...be mutually encouraged by each other's faith." (Romans 1:12)
One of my favorite places to do this is the By His Grace Bloggers private Facebook group. If you're a Christian blogger, I highly encourage you to join us! Grace Girls stopping by, be sure to shout out in the comments! :)
4) We cannot let the enemy win.
I don't think I can make these letters big enough... We mustn't let the enemy win!
God has given us a purpose and a story to share for his glory. The enemy wants to put a stop to that, and we can't let him!
It's too easy to admit defeat, but don't let the enemy's attacks silence your voice.
I want to encourage you in your journey, sweet sister.
If this post is resonating deeply with you today, please feel free to reach out. Leave a comment below, or send me an email via the contact page. I would love to support you!
I've learned a lot over the past few days, and I have a feeling this is only the beginning...
But the good news is that Jesus has already won (John 16:33):
"In this world you will have trouble. But take heart! I have overcome the world."
In His Grace,