As the Lord of Heavens Armies orders our steps, the blistering heat, unbearable cold, and dreadful long roads are no match for our faith. Apparently, the decision to seek after God above all else takes the already ginormous bull’s eye from head to toe and puts it in bold font and italics. Granted, when we gave our lives to Christ, demons were assigned to each of us. Many of us do not expect to encounter opposition as we leap over hurdles in the spirit realm by faith. To our dismay, there are adversarial forces taunting us, pushing, shoving, frustrating, discouraging, depressing, and even scaring us to keep us from the next level in our faith walk with the Lord. Growing up, I used to smoke weed and skip school. During this time, I learned of my peers’ fascination with martial arts. As I watched these movies, although I was under the influence of substances, I could not help but wonder why these movies were so popular. So, I started paying more attention to them. The storyline was always the same, someone did the unthinkable to the main character or his/her family and the dynasty of the antagonist needed to be destroyed for the offense.

“The weapons we fight with are not the weapons of the world. On the contrary, they have divine power to demolish strongholds.” 2 Corinthians 10:3-4

Interestingly, in the spirit realm, there are levels. On these martial arts movies that I watched growing up there were levels as well. The angry person that had been wronged would have to defeat all the opponents on each level before they could reach the top tier of the building where the Grand Master was. To take out the Grand Master was to destroy the dynasty, I gathered. Now in the spiritual realm, our levels or tiers may be defeating the demons attached to our identities in Christ. You know, the demons that tell us daily that we are too ______ to be used by God. Additionally, we may come to a level where we must conquer the pain and disappointment caused by others. It is plausible that we might even have to repeat a level. Have you ever seen in a movie where it looked like the opponent was dead, and the warrior starts boasting, or getting too comfortable in enemy territory, inadvertently turning their back on their enemy and, Wham? Hypothetically, we may have to overcome the inner voice that wants to doubt God, doubt itself, and doubt its potential. From experience, if this demon is not destroyed, the next level will be unattainable albeit within reach. Ah, the top level. Where the Grandmaster is. That is Satan, the father of lies. Who can defeat him? The more accurate question is, “Who already defeated him?” God has authority over everything, including our enemy, always has, always will.

“The God of peace will soon crush Satan under your feet. The grace of our Lord Jesus be with you.” Romans 16:20

As we surrender to God, operating with the full power and authority given us by Him, God puts Satan under our toes. This is a daily, gradual process. For some, we may have fun when we allow the enemy control over a particular area of our lives. Let’s use our mouth’s as an example. We may delight in saying whatever to whomever we please without thought of their feelings, God’s will and such. But when Satan tries to take over- he tried to take over heaven, how much more will he try to control us- we do not want to play in the sandbox with him anymore. We may subconsciously allow Satan to influence us to harbor unforgiveness but when he wants to play in our finances or marriages we want out. He does not play nice. The best bet is not to play with him at all. When we find ourselves in sin, rather than toying with the pros and cons of said sin, we can quickly turn it over to God. After all, God is the One who keeps that vicious viper beneath our treads. But what about when we are following God and Satan has still been given the go ahead to wreak havoc in our lives?

“Then the LORD said to Satan, “Behold, all that he has is in your power, only do not put forth your hand on him.” So Satan departed from the presence of the LORD.” Job 1:12

“We are pressed on every side by troubles, but we are not crushed. We are perplexed, but not driven to despair. We are hunted down but never abandoned by God. We get knocked down, but we are not destroyed. Through suffering, our bodies continue to share in the death of Jesus so that the life of Jesus may also be seen in our bodies.”

We can trust our Dad to control our enemy. If Abba Father, makes areas of our lives permissible for the enemy to come in causing grief, turmoil, and destruction, then know that God has a plan. Job was blessed to suffer, lose all he had and be accused of sins he didn’t commit. It is a blessing that God knows us so well that although we feel that we are about to faint under an attack, God knows what situations, and particularly how to use that serpent to get us to the next level. I can be joyous at the hardships that greet me in the morning. This is not aimless torturing, but a rather purposeful pain to make me so uncomfortable that I get up in the spirit realm and come meet God on a new echelon. The new echelon, prompts a new praise, a new song, a new attitude, but it all started with the oppositional forces lurking about making me cry to my Father for help. When my same cry could not get me off the uncomfortable plane that I was on, I had to cry louder and harder with an increased intensity and purposefulness and that is how I reached my new level in God. Nevertheless, even as we are gaining ground and getting closer to the Lord, we should never turn our backs on our enemy and give a victory speech. Keep fighting with the word of God, keeping warring against all the power of the enemy, keep your flesh under subjection. Strong’s Exhaustive Concordance renders the word “keep” as: maintain, preserve, continue. This means that we cannot stop to gloat over a past victory because there are more levels and more opponents to fight. Keep fighting my friend.

“I have created the blacksmith who fans the coals beneath the forge and makes the weapons of destruction. And I have created the armies that destroy. But in that coming day no weapon turned against you will succeed. You will silence every voice raised up to accuse you. These benefits are enjoyed by the servants of the LORD; their vindication will come from me. I, the LORD, have spoken!” Isaiah 54:16-17

-Lady Jay