Terry R. Baughman
“Be sober, be vigilant; because your adversary the devil walks about like a roaring lion, seeking whom he may devour. Resist him, steadfast in the faith, knowing that the same sufferings are experienced by your brotherhood in the world” (1 Peter 5:8-9).
Everyone needs a little R&R. Usually that means “rest and relaxation,” a break from the busy routine of life. It is an occasion to unwind, destress, and do something fun while you escape the normal demands of vocational responsibilities. It is essential for future productivity to take these times of refreshing so that we may more effectively fulfill our normal obligations.
As we focus on Strategies for Success, the R&R will take on new significance. Our first R&R is Recognize and Reject. In each session we will identify a new R&R strategy for facing our challenges, new faith for a successful outcome, and a new tactical plan for victory when engaging in spiritual warfare. This R&R will leave us recharged, re-energized, and renewed in the Spirit to see with new insight the future God has in mind for us!
Sometimes we must step back to see the bigger picture of the challenges we are facing. When we see the broad attack of the enemy against all representation of righteousness then we recognize that we are not alone in this battle. Our myopic view may cause us to feel overwhelmed, singled out, and isolated in our personal fight against depression, defeat, and the devil himself. However, it is in those moments we must reject the feeling of failure, recognize who is fighting for us, and embrace the promises of God that guarantee our successful resistance against the enemy. “If God is for us, who can be against us?” (Romans 8:31).
Recognize the source of our opposition. Identify the enemy of our souls as the source of the insidious attacks against our homes, our families, and the church. The enemy is the devil and he will always be the enemy. He worms his way into our homes, seeking to bring contention, bitterness, and conflict in our families, driving us apart from one another and from God. He stirs up negative feelings in the community of faith and drives a wedge of resentment between us.
Recognize what the enemy is doing and reject his authority over you! Reject the very idea that we are overwhelmed, outmatched, and overpowered. Remember, God is on our side!
James said, “Resist the devil and he will flee from you” (James 4:7). As we submit to God and seek Him, we are empowered to reject and resist the enemy and all of his devices. We are equipped for battle and the victory is ours.
Paul declared, “The weapons of our warfare are not carnal but mighty in God for pulling down strongholds, casting down arguments and every high thing that exalts itself against the knowledge of God, bringing every thought into captivity to the obedience of Christ” (2 Corinthians 10:4–5). Recognize that we are equipped with the defenses we require to resist the enemy of our souls.
Recognize that we are in a battle and the opposition is real, but reject the very thought of surrender. We were created for success and we are equipped for victory. In outlining the armor of God and its armament for spiritual warfare, Paul encouraged, “taking the shield of faith with which you will be able to quench all the fiery darts of the wicked one” (Ephesians 6:16).
Recognize the source of our power, reject the intimidation of the devil, and believe that we are able to deflect every flaming arrow that comes our way!
“For then you will make your way prosperous, and then you will have good success” (Joshua 1:8).