A Safe Warrior?
By Linda Cornett-Ching
As I look around I see an overcast sky, the tension in the air is palpable. You can hear horses stamping and snorting and see their breath in the air as they release the tension they too can feel. All around the clinking of armour and weapons can be heard as your company makes ready for the coming battle. Some of the troops look scared, some determined. All are waiting for their commander to give the order.
"Though we will face great peril, we must stand together against a common enemy. This day we cannot – dare not, let evil win. If we are brave enough, show loyalty, honor and stand together we will triumph! What unfolds this day will be told from family to family for generations. Good always overcomes darkness."
It's a speech so inspiring, you feel a stirring in your soul. A courage you didn't know was in you rises up. Grabbing your sword and shield and with a guttural yell you join with your fellow warriors and follow your commander into battle.
I am an avid movie watcher. I am inspired by scenes and speeches that rouse armies or teams to action. My favorite movie in which I am able to draw a lot of spiritual parallels is "Lord of the Rings." I know some of you may not relate or even take issue with that, but it's how God talks to me.
God plants pictures in my mind of me as a princess. Over time and in different circumstances I may look different or wear different clothes. As God has been healing me from childhood wounds this picture has changed a lot. I have gone from being a child nestled in Jesus' arms to a young woman; a princess walking in the forest. These past few years God has given me pictures of myself as a princess warrior. I am in battle gear. I have a sword and shield. It would take too long to describe to you the many scenes played out that the Father has shown me but I love how God has chosen to communicate with me in this manner.
Because my childhood was so chaotic it's understandable that my life's focus has been about safety and security. In fact I often pray and ask Papa if I can die peacefully in my sleep just quietly slip into heaven. It's funny really that these two pictures can exist in my brain. A warrior me and a sheltered me. God has been challenging my view and bringing these two images together over the last six months. I have realized that I can't have it both ways. There is no such thing as a safe warrior.
From the moment my eyes open in the morning I am engaged in an epic battle whether I want to be or not. We all are, even if we are unaware. The Bible tells us in 1 Peter 5:8 (Message Bible) "Keep a cool head. Stay alert. The Devil is poised to pounce, and would like nothing better than to catch you napping. Keep your guard up. You're not the only ones plunged into these hard times. It's the same with Christians all over the world. So keep a firm grip on the faith. The suffering won't last forever. It won't be long before this generous God who has great plans for us in Christ—eternal and glorious plans they are! will have you put together and on your feet for good. He gets the last word; yes, he does."
The word of God does not leave us hopeless. It tells us how to suit up to protect ourselves. Ephesians 6:10-18 (ESV) says "Finally, be strong in the Lord and in the strength of his might. Put on the whole armor of God, that you may be able to stand against the schemes of the devil. 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. Therefore take up the whole armor of God, that you may be able to withstand in the evil day, and having done all, to stand firm. Stand therefore, having fastened on the belt of truth, and having put on the breastplate of righteousness."
So my friends I am adjusting my thinking. Do I want to slip quietly into heaven like a coward who managed to slink around the battle or do I want to put on the full armour of God and with the King's authority march boldly into the fray? When I enter into heaven and hear those words "well done good and faithful servant". Matthew 25:23 NIV It will take on a new meaning.