"I have told you these things, so that in me you may have peace. In this world you will have trouble. But take heart! I have overcome the world" - John 16:33 (NIV).
In the olden days of kingdom nation states it was a custom for each to engage in habitual wars for territorial expansion. History is much a record of one kingdom after one overthrowing another. One can imagine that for each it's major job was preparation for war while building up defences against possible onslaught from an enemy.
In the spiritual realm we are also aware that there are two kingdoms at war. There is the kingdom of darkness led by Satan and his minions waging an attack on the kingdom of light. The kingdom of light is led by Jesus Christ and his angels. This is why Paul reminds us, "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).
Everyone who is involved in a battle would definitely like to be on the winning side. While the enemy can inflict occasional hits on Christ's army our comfort is the damage is only temporary and doesn't last. "For the LORD your God is the one who goes with you to fight for you against your enemies to give you victory" (Deuteronomy 20:4).
So, as it is, whatever the battle you may encounter, "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" (Ephesians 6:10-12).
Prayer for today: Lord Father God of Abraham, maker of heaven and earth, how thankful I am to be in the victorious army of the Lord, who gives me power to overcome the enemy, this I pray in Jesus's name!
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“Be anxious for nothing, but in everything by prayer and supplication, with thanksgiving, let your requests be made known to God”- (Philippians 4:6).
Perhaps you have heard of a certain old magical trade known as mind reading. According to this trade which has been around for millenniums and has its share of tricksters, mind readers are able to discern thought patterns of individuals before they even utter a word. There are places in the world where this, as expected, is a lucrative occupation, with practitioners, often crafty magicians, demanding hefty fees, just to tell thoughts of others.
As Christians, of course, we have an all knowing God, who has said, “Do not be like them, for your Father knows what you need before you ask him” ( Mathew 6:8). Further, our Lord has pointed out, “And when you pray, do not keep on babbling like pagans, for they think they will be heard because of their many words” ( Mathew 6:7). As Christians when we come to God, we do so with full confidence, that He already knows our needs and will meet them according to his glorious riches in heaven.
Of particular interest for us here is that while God perfectly knows our needs before we even dare utter a single word, still it is incumbent upon us to make our requests known to Him. A parent may have long noticed a child has a need for a new pair of shoes; but it is another dimension, when the child does come out and share aloud that his pair is worn out, hurting and is quite in need of a new one. The parent takes notice, especially when the matter is presented with such conviction and urgency. This is why Hannah cried out to God for a child ( 1 Samuel 1:9-18).
In our relationship with God, as the Apostle Paul advises us, it is not just enough to assume and let matters be, that after all God knows all our needs, but we too bear a responsibility to make our requests known to Him. Once we are done with that, we let God do His part, allowing “the peace of God, which transcends all understanding” ( Philippians 4:7) to flood us.
So, today, do not hold back your needs from the Almighty God. He has paved the way to walk to Him through His son Jesus Christ, to present your case, bear out your heart’s desire, and let Him do His part!
Prayer today: Lord Father God of Abraham, maker of heaven and earth, today I rise to make my requests known to you, knowing you have heard me even before I utter a single word, assured that you will meet each and every one of my needs, according to your glorious riches in heaven!