Unleash Your Inner Warrior
“Any area of our lives for which we have no hope is under the influence of a lie.”
My dear warrior,
The Christmas season is a time of hope because we take time to remember Christ our Savior’s birth. But with all the stress that comes with the holidays (the shopping, cooking, cleaning, travelling, etc.), we often find ourselves in the middle of very difficult circumstances, things don’t seem to go as planned, and we can have bad days that sometimes just feel hopeless. Just this past week I found myself crying out to God and telling Him that I would much prefer to feel the weight of His glory than the weight of sadness. There are times when we may have particularly bad days, or struggles that just don’t seem to end. In those times of heartache or of losing hope or of fear and anxiety we may find ourselves wanting to throw in the towel, wanting to give up, and telling God that we don’t want to do this anymore. If you are feeling anguished this holiday season, let me encourage you, my dear wounded warrior.
I have been struggling with feelings of wanting to give up hope and knew in my spirit that that was wrong. I began to seek God for the countering reality and I came across a short segment of one of Bill Johnson’s teachings. His opening thought was this: “Any area of our lives for which we have no hope is under the influence of a lie.” He is absolutely right.
Beloved, hope is not a flimsy feel-good emotion that flutters through our chest as we toy with vague imaginations of things we want (as western culture would portray it). The biblical definition of hope is confident expectation or divine expectation. There is nothing flimsy or vague or merely feel-good about it. It is a firm and established expectation that is rooted in our faith in the Lord our God. He Himself is the God of hope who fills us with all joy and peace as we trust in Him. It is through the power of the Holy Spirit that we may overflow in hope!
My dear, if you are feeling hopeless in some area of your life, I would challenge you not to simply re-evaluate it from the standpoint of mere human logic, coming to a conclusion that excludes the Lord. Seek Him out. Ask Him how He sees the situation; ask Him what it is He wants to do in that area of your life, and find out directly from the Giver of life what your hope (your confident expectation) should be. There is no situation that you could present to God that He is unprepared for or does not have an answer for. He knows all. Nothing is hidden from Him, and nothing is too complicated for Him.
It is through trials and difficulties that our character is refined and that we learn to persevere. It is in those times that we learn to truly lean on, trust in and rely on God in ways we never have before. You cannot learn to trust God when everything is going well. In fact, you wouldn’t even have a semblance of a clue of what it truly means to trust God if everything was wonderful all the time and you were never given the opportunity to learn to trust in the Lord!
I absolutely love Mike Bickle’s notes on confidence in the midst of trials. He says, “Transformation involves a process of coming into agreement with God with our intention (perseverance), behavior (character), and perspective (hope).”
Far too often, people make blanket statements that they have had a ‘bad day’ or a ‘bad week’ when things haven’t gone their way, or things have simply gone awry. I want you to recognize that this is the day the Lord has made. Scripture says, “I will rejoice and be glad in it.” Even if things don’t go your way, or if bad things happen, be intentional about your response. Warriors do not let events and circumstances dictate their emotional reaction; warriors choose how they will respond to any given situation, rather than reacting to it. Be responsive, not reactive. Rejoice and be glad, even if for no other reason than for the sheer fact that this is the day the Lord has made.
In times when everything has gone completely pear-shaped, when our world is upside down and when everything seems lost, it is in those times we thank Him in our troubles. Notice that I said we thank Him IN our troubles, not FOR our troubles. (As Graham Cooke says, “we’re not Christian masochists!”). Beloved, we choose to thank Him for who He is in the midst of all circumstances. We thank Him for who He is for us, no matter what we are going through. If you don't know who He is in your circumstances, then it is the perfect time for you to be introduced to different aspects of His nature. Graham Cooke has the best question I have ever learned to ask of the Lord. Ask Him: God, who is You want to be for me now that You could not have been for me at any other time? He will introduce Himself to you. Each situation might be different: He may be Comforter now, and in another time He will introduce another side of His nature, such as Lover, Friend, Counselor, Father, King, Lord, etc.
Beloved, warriors are not people who simply let life happen to them. Warriors are intentional about the kinds of attitudes and behaviors they choose. They choose to respond, not react. They choose to thank Him in the midst of trials and difficulties. They choose to see that this is the day the Lord has made, and choose to rejoice and be glad in it. They allow their character to be refined. Warriors persevere and do not give up hope, because they know that any area of their lives for which they do not have hope is under the influence of a lie—and they seek the countering truth. So take heart, my dear warrior. It is the start of a new year.
Happy new year, my dear warriors!
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.