The Fight of Our Lives

Yesterday several Team Leaders and Corps Members met up and faced off in several friendly games of paintball.  We joined several other individuals with various levels of experience and headed out into the field of battle.

If it had been actual warfare, I would have died instantly.  For the first several games I found myself out within the first couple minutes of the fight, sporting paint splatter across my mask and shoulders.  As the day progressed, I found myself lasting longer and becoming more comfortable with paintballs flying around me.

We returned to our hotels exhausted and sporting fresh welts as proof of our glorious battles and war stories.  And as I started to fall asleep last night, I couldn’t help but think of the actual warfare that we face every day in our lives.

Be alert and of sober mind.  Your enemy the devil prowls around like a roaring lion looking for someone to devour.
– 1 Peter 5:8

We get so used to facing the daily struggles of life and we forget about the spiritual aspect of our faith.  We have been called to be warriors, barbarians, but we so often forget what we are fighting against.

For though we live in the world, we do not wage war as the world does.
– 2 Corinthians 10:3

Other translations put word it “For though we walk in the flesh, we are not waging war according to the flesh.”

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 6:12

“This present darkness” as many texts state.

Jesus wasn’t fighting against the powers of this world, but he spoke of another and a kingdom that was close at hand.  His followers knew the darkness they fought as they came face to face with demons who knew the name of God, sickness that fled from the flesh, and watched as the blind were given back their sight.  They urge us, through their teachings, to prepare for a war that has consequences greater than death.

Our society is filled with war, from video games to books, movies to music, but we have lost focus on the fight for our personal lives.  The darkness surrounds us, infiltrating our thoughts and threatening our souls.

Spiritual warfare is more than a sermon that is preached on Sundays and then forgotten the next morning, but a daily struggle that we cannot forget.  And we don’t face it alone.  With our brothers and sisters of faith at our side, we have the strength of community, the true body of Christ.

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.  Stand firm then, with the belt of truth buckled around you waist, with the breastplate of righteousness in place, and with your feet fitted with the readiness that comes from the gospel of peace.  In addition to this, take up the shield of faith, with which you can extinguish all the flaming arrows of the evil one.  Take up the helmet of salvation and the sword of the Spirit, which is the word of God.
– Ephesians 6:13-17

Like the paintball field, some of the blows that we receive will hurt more than others, but with the community of faith, we can face the darkest of days with the light of Christ.

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God Bless and PEACE

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