I think my brain is hardwired with a crusader mentality. I have a compulsion to improve the things around me, to right wrongs, to create new paths. In high school, I put my energy into improving our cheerleading team. In college, I worked with children to teach them about God. As a teacher, I experiment with different techniques to find the best approach for each student. As a mom, I try to teach my kids to work hard and to leave things better than they found them.
Here is the hard part:
God doesn’t intend for me to fix everything. He didn’t plan for me to crusade against every evil.
So how do I know which battles are mine? Which battles should be avoided? Which battles are for someone else to fight?
I don’t know. That is why I must go to God for wisdom.
“If any of you lacks wisdom, let him ask God, who gives generously to all without reproach, and it will be given him.” –James 1:5 ESV
How do I diffuse emotions so they don’t cloud my judgment? I must surrender my wants and desires to God…over and over, minute by minute.
“So He said to them, “When you pray, say: Our Father in heaven, Hallowed be Your name. Your kingdom come. Your will be done on earth as it is in heaven.” –Luke 11:2 NKJV
I must recognize that He is God…and that I am NOT.
“‘For my thoughts are not your thoughts, neither are your ways my ways,’ declares the LORD. ‘As the heavens are higher than the earth, so are my ways higher than your ways and my thoughts than your thoughts…‘” –Isaiah 55:8-9 NIV
God might intend for me to go through a tough situation to teach me to pray, to refine my character, or to develop patience. He might allow me to suffer pain so that I will have more empathy for others. OR He might choose to remove the trial. I am so short-sighted that it’s hard for me to see the eternal
effects of suffering. I just know that I want out. NOW. Yesterday would be better.
Some days God calls us to get up and fight. Some days God wants us to wait for His plan to unfold. Either way, I must surrender to His will. My anger, frustration, and strong emotions will not help His plan along unless they force me to my knees in prayer. After all, prayer IS my greatest weapon…
“Put on the full armor of God, so that you can take your stand against the devil’s schemes. 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 6:11-12 NIV
As you and I struggle against the wrongs in life, we can use these verses as our prayer tools. Whether God wants us to fight these battles directly or not, we can always fight them on our knees.