This Present Darkness

Finally, be strong in the Lord and in his mighty power.  Put on the full armor of God, so that you can take your stand against the devil’s schemes.  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.
 – Ephesians 6:10-12

In the summer of 2009, I traveled with a group of college students to Uganda where I experienced Africa for the first time.  I saw things I never wished to see.  Experienced things that could not be explained with words.  I heard the silence in the night and felt the darkness creeping in around us. 

To deny that there are forces that oppose us (call them spirits, demons, fallen angels or whatever you like) is to live in ignorance.  They fight against us because we live out our faith.  They attack us with temptations, with struggles, through others, and they attack us physically when everything else fails.

We live in a world that justifies everything through science.  Our society no longer lets us believe in the spiritual forces that surround us.  There are things that cannot be explained, but are felt by those with faith. 

I’ve discussed the powers of darkness before, in how we cannot play around with spiritual forces of darkness and my own personal experiences with these powers, but there is something that has been bothering me recently.  I’ve been listening to stories, to experiences of battles with spiritual forces, with demons and I cannot help but ask myself if sometimes we give these forces too much power?

God has equipped us with armor and the sword.  He has given us the belt of truth (Ephesians 6:14), the breastplate of righteousness (v. 14), readiness for our feet (v. 15), the shield of faith (v. 16), the helmet of salvation (v. 17) and the sword of the Spirit, the word of God (v. 17).  But yet, we still stand in awe of the darkness that surrounds us.  We give it the power of fear. 

I have felt the cold hands in the night as I battled with the spirits of darkness in Africa.  I have prayed in desperation, when it felt like God was so far away.  I have studied spiritual warfare, read accounts of missionaries out in the fields and people of faith at home.  Yes, the experience still sends shivers down my spine, but I am no longer afraid of what happened or what may happen in the years to come. 

I have felt the darkness, but the light of Christ burns it away.  Our faith gives us the strength to no longer fear what is out in the darkness that surrounds us.  We have been given the arms for battle, now let us don the armor of God and stand against our foes flaming arrows. 

Yes, Africa is a continent covered in darkness, but within there are hundreds, thousands of flames that pierce through the night.  They understand what it means to stand in faith.  We can learn from their courage and strength. 

God Bless and PEACE



  1. Adam Schulte Said:

    I saw the title for this and immediately thought of Frank Peretti’s book. A great book on spiritual warfare and the power of pray to combat it. I like how it paints the picture for what I think many people seem to disregard. That spiritual forces do exist and that there is warfare going on that we can’t see.

    • stkerr Said:

      It is a very powerful book. I read it several years ago, then reread it last summer, along with its sequel. Another powerful book. Just as there are forces of darkness, there are angels standing beside us in this fight. We dont see ’em, but they are there fighting for and with us.

  2. […] EXCERPTED FROM Spiritual Battles source […]

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