Saturday, 12 October 2013

Open War

After Gandalf awakens Theoden from his magic-induced sleep state, Theoden makes the choice to lead his people to Helm's Deep. The stronghold of Rohan as described by Tolkein in the Lord of the Rings. He does this rather than face open war, but as Gandalf reasons, war is upon him in any case.

We live our lives as Christians often in the same frame of mind as Theoden King. Either we are blinded by the lies of our own wormtongue or once our eyes are open we choose not to face the battle before us.

Whether we acknowledge it or not, a War of immense magnitude is already upon us. From the moment we hand our lives back to Christ we are involved in an epic battle for that very Life that God Himself went through death to win for us.

If the Glory of God truly is Man fully Alive as St. Irenaeus said, then to be fully alive we must experience a birth into that life. As Christians, this is usually referred to as a "conversion" experience, but then what follows is an almighty battle that lasts from that moment to our going to be with Christ after we leave this World behind.

We live in a state of War. The sooner we realise it, the better equipped we will be to fight and receive the Victory Jesus won for us. He gave us all the weapons we need to undo the works of evil in this world. Weapons for destroying strongholds of the mind, sickness, poverty are all at our command, simply at the name of Jesus. We are able in His Power to literally drive out demonic influence exactly the way He did and release others held in the captivity of the World and it's systems.

But War involves casualties. Something we are apt to forgetting. It's uncomfortable, and painful to watch people we've grown with in the Faith falter. It's more uncomfortable to realise "I faltered" as we walk. We tend to be given over to pointing out other's faults than acknowledging our own. That is a major battle in itself, and one the Enemy wages daily within us.

I fell away from God for several years when I left home. I moved in with the girl I was seeing, and we shared that arrangement for some time. When the relationship ended I moved back to God, drawn back by memories of teachings and cassette tapes of sermons I had heard years before. It was with much struggle I acknowledged my error and accepted His leadership in my heart. It was arrogance on my part that let me fall into a battlefield I would have lost if I had not been able to admit I was failing in my own strength.

Warfare is not a comfortable topic, and it may be a harsh reality for us to live in. We are the embodiment of Christ in the World, but living out that life to the full is a battle we will have to continue to fight on a daily basis, minute by minute for our entire life.

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