STRENGTH TO STAND

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Very few of us have never had ‘a day of evil’ day you wish you could start over and rewind. A day that goes pear shaped and leads you to a season of hardship and most often you have no control over the events. Whether it’s our health or finances or relationships of all of them at once. If it is not us it may be a family member or a friend. Our church family is having days like this at a level we have never seen before. what do we do? Do we crumble? Do we fret and worry? Do we bury our head? Do we ignore it? Do we get weighed down with the burdens of it? How do we help each other through days like this.

What does a day of evil look like? It may be the day your doctor gave you a date for surgery. It may be the day you lose your job or may be the day you fail your exam. It may be the day you heard bad news or even that day you had that accident or lost a family friend in an accident. Days like this can trigger of season of challenges that we need wisdom, strength and supernatural strategy to deal with. Days like this have the potential to leave us devastated and reeling. These days are unpredictable but to be expected. The bible even tells us that they will come. Paul not only acknowledges them but gives us a directive that not only prepares us for them but help us come through them with a sense of victory and strength we did not know we had. In fact he goes further than that and suggests that regardless of how many days like this we have we should be able to get through them strong every time. We shouldn’t be surprised by ‘days of evil’ and when they come we should be able to stand.

If you are anything like me you need a word like STAND to be at the forefront of my mind when days like this come your way.

Ephesians 6: 10
Finally, be strong in the Lord and in his mighty power. 11 Put on the full armor of God, so that you can take your stand against the devil’s schemes. 12 For our struggle is not against flesh and blood, but against the rulers, against the authorities, against the powers of this dark world and against the spiritual forces of evil in the heavenly realms. 13 Therefore put on the full armor of God, so that when the day of evil comes, you may be able to stand your ground, and after you have done everything, to stand. 14 Stand firm then, with the belt of truth buckled around your waist, with the breastplate of righteousness in place, 15 and with your feet fitted with the readiness that comes from the gospel of peace. 16 In addition to all this, take up the shield of faith, with which you can extinguish all the flaming arrows of the evil one. 17 Take the helmet of salvation and the sword of the Spirit, which is the word of God
.

Whether you want a day of evil or not, the reality is, that trouble is on its way and the enemy is wanting to take you out. He knows how to pick a battle and he wants to pick one with you. He doesn’t care that you don’t want evil days or you don’t want to engage. In fact he would prefer that.

Last week I spoke the word STAND over our church as we head into 21 days of praying and fasting for the many families being effected by these ‘days’ and a season of battle.

There are so many different definitions of stand, standing…..in this context it is a not an idle form of standing but rather a military context of standing.

To stand can be defined as:
To remain upright
To be established
To be located
To maintain a position
To continue on course
To endure
To hold
To last
To prevail
To remain
To stay
To abide

To stand requires strength. To stand requires endurance. To stand requires focus.
To stand requires us to be awake, aware, and upright.

When Paul challenges us to stand, he puts it in context. He uses this imagery of standing throughout his letters. It is often from prison and an environment of evil, filth, horror, pain and agony that Paul writes to these churches imploring them to stand. Who better to encourage us to STAND in the face difficult days and seasons. The temptation when we face tough days, challenges and opposition is to relent, relinquish, crumble, retreat, yield, recline, soften or abscond but Paul implores us to STAND.

We are already half way through 2013 and from what I can see, days of evil are aplenty but so too are soldiers willing to be strong, to stand their ground and having done all…to STAND.

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