Unleash Your Inner Warrior
“My responsibility is to obey, to surrender my heart and to yield myself to the will of God. It is in the process of obedience that we gain understanding."
My dear warrior,
As Christians—as warriors for Christ—we must live with utmost intentionality. The rest of the world may be lazy in their dealings, drift through life, simply get lucky or live any number of ways, but we are not meant to live as the world lives. We are not meant to think as they do. Warriors are intentional about each and every action they carry out: from the way they hold their weapons down to the way they dress, making sure they are armed to the teeth without you ever knowing that they have even one weapon on their person.
What does it look like to live with intentionality as a Christian? Look to Christ. He lived each day with absolute intentionality. He only did that which He saw His Father doing, and said that which He heard His Father say (John 5:19, John 12:49). My dearest friend and I have chosen to take this example as literally as it gets. Living with intentionality in the big things is good (seeking His will for where you will live and work, who you will marry, big career decisions, etc), but why stop there? We have chosen to seek Him out for every single decision in our lives. How should we plan out our days? What is it that He wants us to do today (or doesn’t want us to do)? Should we go shopping? If yes, where does He want us to go shopping? What should we cook for dinner? What project does He want us to work on at home (read, write, paint, create, etc.)? Should we go and visit friends/ family, or does He want us home?
At first blush, this may seem completely ridiculous to you, but realize that we were quite literally created to live in constant conversation with Him! And now think about how much time you waste; think about how often you wish you had more hours in your day; think about how stressed you get (and how often you get stressed); think about how it seems like your to do list never gets done and only ever seems to get longer. Now think about this: if you inquired of the Lord at every turn, would He not be kind enough to help you through each minor detail in your day? Of course He would! He would tell you which things you don’t need to do and can scratch off your list. He’d be with you in all the things He wants you to do, and you would not lose precious hours on irrelevant time wasters. That is just the goodness and kindness of God. He cares about the details of our lives. He cares about our stress levels, our health, our well-being, our happiness—and since He is Love and Joy and Peace and Patience and Kindness, He has no reason to withhold Himself from you.
I want you to understand this: Busyness always wars against our awareness of God. Busyness fights and competes for our time. Busyness is the enemy of our spiritual walk. I’m sure you’ve noticed that when you get too busy, the first thing you tend to throw out is time with God. That is backwards. God gets our first ten percent; He gets the first portion; He gets the first cut. We begin by spending time with Him, begin by inquiring of Him, and we begin all of this in rest. We do not (and cannot) expand our awareness of God through striving, but through rest.
We must be absolutely intentional about entering into rest. It is laziness that gives into panic, fear, stress and anxiety. It is intentionality that submits to rest, and chooses to surrender to the Lord. It is intentionality that chooses to displace negative and ungodly thoughts with godly thoughts, and in rest you choose to place your focus on God rather than feeding internal clamor.
Faith is not the result of work, effort or striving. Faith is the fruit of rest and surrender. Faith comes as a result of resting in the Lord (no, not napping) and surrendering yourself to Him—not of striving. Hebrews 4:11 says that we must work to enter into rest so that we don’t fall into disobedience and unbelief. At the beginning, I wrote that we ought to look to Christ for the example of how to live with intentionality. Jesus Himself lived out of a place of constant rest. Notice the times that He would spend fasting and praying. He didn’t fast for a miracle, for a specific breakthrough, or for healing. He fasted into a lifestyle.
Resting in Him like this and fasting as part of a lifestyle resets your mind on Him. We know from Romans 8 that the mind set on the flesh (a mind controlled by your sinful nature) is death and it is hostile towards God (it cannot obey God), but the mind set on the Spirit is life and peace. If you start your day in anger, irritation, frustration, anger, fear, depression, etc., you are going to miss what God is doing. If you want to succeed, do not dwell on earthly things. Instead, live intentionally: surrender to God, enter into His rest and ask Him to guide you through your day moment-by-moment.
“Complaining proves nothing but that you can hear the voice of the Devil” - Bill Johnson
Don’t dwell on carnal things. When you do, when you magnify negative things, when you enter wrong thoughts, you are setting yourself up to fail. The carnal mind disconnects you from what God is saying and doing.
This is where self-help is such nonsense. If you catch yourself thinking wrong, it is not enough just to change your thinking. It isn’t simply 'mind over matter.' Don’t just change your thinking, confess and repent! Confess to the Lord that your thinking was wrong and repent of it. Don’t just try to change your mind by striving. Admit that your line of thinking was counter to godliness. You don’t want to just say “whoops” and move on and hope it doesn’t come back. Be intentional: confess ungodly thoughts as sin, repent of them and partner with God for better thoughts. Partner with Him so that you can live rightly, moment-by-moment. It’s a brilliant way to live! And on the battleground, it’s the only way to live. Live any other way and you will give the enemy an opportunity to take you down when he should never have had an opportunity in the first place.
Begin practicing. Ask God to give you better thoughts. Inquire of the Lord as you make decisions throughout your day. From the clothes you wear, what He wants to do with your time, to what you ought to pray. It is so rewarding to live this way, and there is so much joy and peace that comes with it: A peace that surpasses all understanding.
Live in the battleground,
©Michèle Aimée, 2015
About the Author
Michèle is a warrior with a passion for God, a deep love of writing, and a fire for combat training. As a warrior, she understands that when she is given orders, she must follow through.