I started the following as a short note to Pete on the Grudge, in regard to his skunk and spilled coffee. It got long. It also got feeling important enough for a blog posting, rather than burial in comments that a lot of our visitors don’t read.
We’re doing spiritual warfare here and we’re doing damage to Satan’s strongholds. Obviously, there will be push back. Skunk in the road. Spilled coffee in the lap (ouch). These are expectable events in anyone’s ordinary life, much more so when you go poking the hornet’s nest the way we’re doing now.
I’ve been doing spiritual warfare for years (long story) and I’ve learned two things.
- We can choose how we respond to bad things.
- If we choose grace over grouch, it totally kicks demon butt.
It’s challenging to learn how to thank God for bad stuff and, for a long time, I thought it was sick to even try. Then, I learned that it is only sick if you thank Him for the bad thing itself, not for the good He can bring out of it.
Romans 8:28 says,
“In all things God works for the good of those who love him, who have been called according to his purpose.”
It doesn’t say, “In the good things.” It says, “In ALL things.”
So He’s doing good, always and everywhere. The trick for us is to learn to work WITH Him in this. I’m reminded of my eldest, who was a slippery escape artist as a toddler. Hold her hand, she’d do her best to pull away. Put a leash on her, she’d sit on the sidewalk and scream. Let her choose her own direction, she’d wait to see which way I wanted to go, so she could run the other way.
Does anyone question that I always wanted what was best for her and that, if she’d cooperated by going WITH me, we could have had more fun and fewer arguments and tears? God’s the same way. When something bad happens, the way of the flesh is to cuss and be all cranky about it; the way of grace is to choose the opposite.
It’s the message of the cross, that in and with Jesus, we can flip any and all bad things on their heads and use them to glorify God and build His kingdom.
Basic steps: ACTS
Adoration: Rejoice in having authority in Jesus to rebuke Satan and his plan to harm you physically, emotionally, mentally and spiritually.
Contrition: Repent of the human desire to bitch and moan and, through repentance, allow God’s grace to change those human feelings.
Thanksgiving: Thank God for having a wonderful plan to bring good out of whatever it is.
Supplication: Offer up the suffering the bad things causes for the salvation of sinners.
I learned the power in this in a really wonderful way once.
I was in the kitchen and dropped something full of something, forget what, but it broke and made an almighty mess all over the floor and up the cupboard doors. My weak heart and arthritis make this a bigger problem for me than for most.
So I’m standing there, looking at this mess, knowing the clean-up will be long and painful. But I remembered I had the choice how to respond. So I said, out loud,
“Thank you, Lord, for giving me this chance to kick demon butt.”
I am not nuts and I am NOT making this up. But as soon as I finished saying that, I HEARD a voice say disgustedly,
“I HATE when she does that!”
It still gives me the grins to remember that!
This is not an easy skill to learn. But it is SO worth it. It also seems to me, looking back, that it was the first step on my road to beating depression.
10 responses to “Kicking demon butt”
Make no mistake, this is a spiritual war.
For we wrestle not against flesh and blood, but against principalities, against powers, against the rulers of the darkness of this world, against spiritual wickedness in high places. — Ephesians 6:12
(I memorized that verse when I was a little kid, back before I had any clue what it meant!)
I was reading a iotw post the other day and Mary from Marin quoted from C.S. Lewis’ the Screwtape Letters where a demon got so angry by being frustrated by uncooperative Christians that he turned into a giant caterpillar. Funny how a book about demons can be so amusing. I got the same amusement from your story, of course. You’re not nuts and I know you’re not making it up. Well done. 😉
I love Screwtape! It’s one of those books I can read again and again, because as I grow, it grows too. It’s a wonderful twofer to read SL and then The Great Divorce. So much wisdom there! Since The Loser Letters came out, I read them as a Threefer. I think I’ve read LL five times already!
Really? I’ve never got around to LL. I’ll have to do that. But first, sleep! 🙂
My friends and I have been talking about having an inaugural ball to celebrate the end of the error. Yes, I am confident that Satan will lose.
You will all have to come. Maybe this will entice you CS Lewis fans where we have the wardrobe which inspired Narnia on display, and the Billy Graham Center at Wheaton College:
Keep the faith!
I remember when the college got Lewis’s wardrobe! I was an undergrad at the time and worked as a professor’s assistant in the English department, where the wardrobe stood for quite some time before being moved to the Wade Center. At that time the Wade Center was housed in the college library; the building that houses it now, which is a replica of Lewis’s home near Oxford, was not built until years later.
When and where is the inaugural ball being held? I might be able to be there, so keep me posted. Maybe Pete and Hoot will join us?
Bob-I think we are aiming for Jan. 20th. lol
I remember Reagan’s inauguration. It was so inspiring to have some optimism back after so many long dark days of dimmy. And then the hostages came home! The wall came down!
Those were the days my friends those were the days.
Happy days will be here again,
if we can get people to get off the kool aid.
I know Jan. is a lousy time for some to be in Chicago, but I love snow. There is also a great Lincoln exhibit in the city, and if you really want to see something wonderful, the Lincoln Library in springfield is a must. Just hop on the train in Chicago and it takes you to the front door.
The hall of whispers is amazing.
That’s really very impressive, GP. I didn’t know about the wardrobe at Wheaton, or the other collections. (I have a George McDonald book on the end table in the living room right now). Funny thing about all those British authors at Wade; NONE of them were honored at the Olympics in London. That really pissed me off. Good thing they had the 40-ft Voldemort, though. At least they got that covered.
I agree, that Olympic spectacle was a joke. A tribute to socialism with the dancing doctors. And when they went on about the poor and huddled masses, I thought they were making fun of colonists.
It never dawned on me that they were dissing the great authors. Thanks for pointing that out.