Friday, August 10, 2018

5 Ways to Stand Firm During Spiritual Attacks








“So Satan left the Lord’s presence, and he struck Job with terrible boils from head to foot.”

Job 2:7 NLT



The further along I get in my faith journey, the more I learn that spiritual warfare is real.


Today I turn in my manuscript for my first traditionally published book, a Christian nonfiction book on transforming our thought lives. For the past three months, I’ve been under an increasing level of spiritual attacks as this book is prepared to make its debut in late 2019.


It didn’t help that I attended a large Christian writers and speakers conference two weeks ago. I enjoyed fellowship and worshiped God with over 700 other women from around the U.S. and the world. Last year when I attended, I experienced spiritual attacks in my relationships, health, finances and marriage, in a clearly defined thread before, during and after my trip. It’s been just as difficult this year, except the after-event spiritual attacks have appeared in a fierce triplicate form.



The more you do to advance God’s kingdom and display His glory, the more you can expect vicious, cruel and dirty spiritual attacks from an enemy who hates you with dark malice. I’m sure he’ll be spitting in my face just for publishing this post today.

When you are attacked, it truly wounds your spirit. That’s the point. Defeat you or disable you so you can do less in service to God and others. But that’s exactly when you need to stand firm in your faith, to prove that nothing can take down a devoted Jesus follower.

If any person in history deserves the unwanted prize of “Most Suffering from a Spiritual Attack,” it’s Job. This righteous, godly man did nothing to warrant losing almost everything he valued. Graciously, God gives us a behind-the-scenes glimpse into Job’s story. The real battle was between God and Satan, not between Job and the nebulous powers of “fate.”

We can learn several powerful lessons from Job’s spiritual attack that will help us stand firm in our own struggles.


1.       God is in perfect control.


God allowed and controlled everything that happened to Job. This is a hard truth to accept. God knew beforehand that Job would lose his wealth, children and health, and still allowed the spiritual attack. He knows the heartbreaking losses you will suffer too. What matters most is that God completely controlled the timing, level and duration of Job’s losses. He does the same with yours.

2.      Our suffering glorifies God.


All of heaven’s angels were watching Job’s spiritual attack with great interest. They are watching yours too. In ways we will not understand until we get to heaven, some of our suffering is primarily intended for a heavenly audience. God gets a special kind of glory when we still choose him despite our suffering. He is certainly glorified on earth when we make that choice, but it also matters in the unseen spiritual realm in ways we can’t fathom.

3.      We can issue as many complaints as we wish to God himself.


God doesn’t expect us to enjoy the suffering of spiritual attacks. The majority of the book of Job records his laments. He gets raw and gritty with God, demanding to know why he was even born. This is not sugar-coated, surface-level faith. This is real, vulnerable belief that bares itself before the creator of the universe. God seems to crave (and reward) this kind of honesty; I know this firsthand. As long as we vent our complaints heavenward, we won’t overburden our loved ones (though sharing with a few supportive friends is definitely therapeutic). We’ll also cultivate a stronger relationship with God in the process.

4.      We can praise God during spiritual attacks.


One of the most affirming, faith-filled verses in the Bible comes from Job, when he was still laying in ashes and scraping his infested boils with a pottery shard. This broken man said, “But as for me, I know that my Redeemer lives, and he will stand upon the earth at last.” (Job 19:25 NLT). He had longed for a mediator (16:21) and predicted the coming of the ultimate Mediator, Jesus Christ. His praise during suffering is inspiration for all of us.


5.      God always wins.


At the end of Job’s story, God blessed Job for completely trusting God through a time of unprecedented (and still unmatched) suffering. He proved the enemy wrong, as he wants to do in your story. He will reign victorious over your spiritual attacks if you depend on him to equip, empower, strengthen and comfort you.


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5 Ways to Stand Firm During Spiritual Attacks



Have a wonderful weekend!

Blessings and God's peace to you,



Photo from Canva.com

Reflection questions:


1. When was the last time you experienced a spiritual attack?
2. How does Job's story inspire you?

1 comment:

  1. I love this line, Sarah: The real battle was between God and Satan, not between Job and the nebulous powers of “fate.”

    It's so easy to lose focus in life, because your first question makes me realize that many times I don't associate a lot of the hard things as spiritual attacks. They are though. It's no coincidence that the hardships most often happen when we're really on fire for God.

    Great post - as usual! Love reading your stuff. ;-)

    ReplyDelete

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