For those of you who use the Exorcist to understand the term ‘spiritual battle’ this won’t make a lot of sense.

My heart has been surrounded.  I’m stuck.  Bitterness, anger and fear have set up sniper positions and picked away at it until it’s trapped in the middle of three straggly palm trees which is the only cover in the middle of a desert.  Unless it can find a way through those front lines, it won’t be free again.  It’s become a POW.  The problem is, that when your heart is captured, the soldiers trying to free it… love, joy, peace, patience, etc.. suddenly look like more enemies. 

Who wants to follow those weaklings that failed you previously across the desert to freedom, knowing that the snipers will have you in their sites and take you down on the way?  Then the heart decides that perhaps it would just be easier to surrender, switch sides and get that cool high-powered rifle that the snipers are using.  Much better option, right? 

In the midst of all the firing, and the good guys coaxing you to try just one more time, there is this Commander on the radio shouting that He’s got your back.  That His people are the best in the business, that they really, truly CAN carry me across the desert away from the sniping and that He has ordered them to do so whether I like it or not.

UGH!  That syndrome where you fall in love with your captors has already kicked in and you don’t WANT to leave.  You’ve convinced yourself that if you go back to the good side, you’re just going to get captured again later.  Why go to all the trouble?

THIS is spiritual warfare, people.  Making the tough and very real decision to go on fighting for the right side of the line whether or not the soldier of hope has reached you yet. 

If it were as simple as holding a crucifix at the right angle and saying the correct, formulaic prayer, it wouldn’t be warfare anymore… it would be magic.  And we all know that magic is an illusion.  Much as we wish it were otherwise.