“You and who’s army?” Did anyone ever say that to you as a child? It’s funny now looking back on it, but not so funny when you’re a little skinny kid in the playground trying to stand up to a gang of scary bullies.
We’ve all had situations in our lives when we just want to fight back. Maybe you’re in a time like that in your life today?
When someone treats us unjustly or unkindly it can be really hard to just stand there and take it. Your instinct is to want to give them a piece of your mind. And even if you’re a quiet, non confrontational sort of person you probably still rage on the inside, and though you might not confront the ‘perpetrator’ you let off steam with your friends and family about it.
‘I wish I’d said this or that’. Or, ‘she’s going to get what coming to her!’ You find yourself becoming consumed with hurt and anger over the issue.
But what if there’s another option? Well, the good news is that there is!
We don’t have to ‘fight back’. As God’s children we can learn to stand still and watch our Father fight for us.
Exodus 14:14 tells us, “The Lord will fight for you; you need only to be still.”
This is what Moses instructed the Israelites to do when the Egyptian army was hot on their heels, ready to destroy them. The Israelites were standing at the edge of the deep, uncrossable Red Sea, stuck. Can you picture the terror that must have begun to stir in their hearts? The instinct to turn and fight with everything they had?
When we find ourselves in situations like this, it isn’t our natural instinct to just stand there, is it? But if this is you today, God, who does not change, the One who is the same yesterday, today and forever, says to you, “be still and wait”.
As God’s Child, the Battles you Face are His Battles.
The bigger picture in that story of the Israelites is that the battle that at first glance looks as though it was between the fleeing Israelites and the Egyptians, wasn’t actually between those two parties at all. Those Egyptians had the audacity to mess God’s beloved, precious people; unwittingly, they had thrown down the gauntlet to the Lord God Himself. The real battle was between the Egyptians and God.
And in the same way, the bigger picture in your story is that the real battle is not between you and that person, or those people who hurt you, mistreated you, or treated you unfairly.
Ephesians 6:12 tells us “For we do not wrestle against flesh and blood, but against the rulers, against the authorities, against the cosmic powers over this present darkness, against the spiritual forces of evil in the heavenly places.”
We are in a spiritual battle. It isn’t people we are fighting. The enemy of our souls, Satan, looks for every opportunity to, as John 10:10 tells us, “steal and kill and destroy. “ Sure, he uses people, and circumstances, and whatever else he can to try to get at you, but it isn’t those people we are fighting and the battle is not ours.
Its the Lord God, God of the angel armies, to whom you and I are very precious, that Satan has the audacity to attempt to take on – and the best news of all is that the outcome of the battle has already been determined – Jesus wins!
You only need to ‘stand.’
Now, by ‘standing, and not fighting back, I’m not suggesting for a moment that we should be passive doormats; to allow anyone who feels like it to walk all over us. But, what we can be, is slow to anger. We can turn the other cheek. We can remember what Proverbs 21:31 tells us, which is that “victory rests with the Lord”.
Ephesians 6:13 tells us “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.”
*note, it doesn’t say put on the armour of God so that you can fight your enemies!
Whatever battles you are facing you can stand still and wait for God, through Christ who gives you strength.