Words–Powerful Weapons

Spiritual Warfare

Part 12

They [believers] triumphed over him [the accuser of the brethren] by the blood of the Lamb and by the word of their testimony; they did not love their lives so much as to shrink from death.  (Revelation 12:11)

Anger Paints an Ugly Portrait color An always-in-trouble five-year-old attended the Sunday school class I helped with. The other teachers had nothing good to say about the boy. And he never failed to live up to their words…except when I taught the class.

My secret? I ignored many of his shenanigans and watch carefully for that split-second of good behavior. I praised him for it with applause and stickers. He responded to kind words the same as he responded to negative input. He repeated the behavior.

It’s really no secret. Words matter. They’re powerful. One of the biggest concerns in our society today is bullying, which causes the victim extreme loss of self-esteem. Our word can have just as powerful positive effects on people if we use them to uplift and encourage.

The impact our words have on people is no secret or surprise. But have you considered our God-given authority over demons through our words?

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Next Week:

Prepare by reading, pondering, and praying about Psalm 18:3.

See you in a twinkling,

Brenda K. Hendricks

Unforgiving—A Weapon Formed Against You

Spiritual Warfare

Part 11

And even if he sins against you seven times in a day, and turns to you seven times and says, I repent [I am sorry], you must forgive him (give up resentment and consider the offense as recalled and annulled). (Luke 17:4 AMP)

What's Keeping You Boxed In?

What’s Keeping You Boxed In?

“This will hurt me worse than it does you,” Mother said just before she “introduced” me to the unfriendly side of the hairbrush. She, actually, did more grounding than spanking to discipline me. But I do remember the reference to the unfriendly side of the hairbrush and her mentioning my punishment hurt her worse than it did me. I could never figure that out—how could she hurt worse than I did? Wasn’t I the one at the stinging end of the brush? Nevertheless, my mother always forgave the offense quickly.

Throughout Scripture, Jesus teaches the necessity of discipline. But He also commands that we forgive the transgressor as often as he seeks forgiveness.

That’s a difficult command to follow. But in a spiritual battle, the enemy can shape our unforgiving attitudes into…

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How about you? Have you disarmed the enemy by forgiving as the Father has forgiven you?

Next Week:

Prepare by reading, pondering, and pray about Revelation 12:11 and 19:10.

See you in a twinkling,

Brenda K. Hendricks

Prayer…a weapon? Seriously?

Spiritual Warfare

Part 10

And pray in the Spirit on all occasions with all kinds of prayers and requests. With this in mind, be alert and always keep on praying for all the Lord’s people. (Ephesians 6:18)

A Child's Prayer

A Child’s Prayer

The morning of his death, Bernardo the Belligerent tightened his belt, shrugged into his breastplate, jerked on his boots, grabbed his sword and shield, and bypassing the commander’s station, rushed to the battlefield. He had no clue the strategy for the day had changed. He never gave a thought to where his battalion was. He even found it difficult, if not impossible, to distinguish between the enemy and ally forces. He discovered too late that he was fighting the fight alone. The war had already been won, victory declared, the spoils gathered. Only a few stragglers refused to surrender that day… .

And Bernardo the Belligerent had died in vain.

Bernardo’s story is a sad one indeed and should never be repeated by any faithful soldier. Unfortunately, many of us Christian warriors mimic…

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Next Week:

Prepare by reading, pondering, and pray about Luke 17:3 and 4. We’ll look at forgiveness a secret spiritual weapon the enemy hates.

See you in a twinkling,

Brenda K. Hendricks

 

What’s in Your Scabbard?

Take…the sword of the Spirit, which is the word of God. (Ephesians 6:17 NIV)

 

Sword of the SpiritWhether written or spoken, words are powerful tools.

When my husband started elementary school, other kids harassed him unmercifully, calling him names like “monkey” or “monk.” The seeds of self-degradation began to sprout. The poor little guy cried to his father about it. His father didn’t approach the bullies, their parents, or even the school.

Instead, he said, “Son, what’s your name?”

“Eugene Van Hendricks,” the boy replied.

“No one can take that from you. Be proud of who you are.”

Not only did those words empower my husband to thwart the insults of those grade-school bullies, they enabled him to become an advocate for other kids.

If our earthly fathers’ words produce confident men and women, how much more so do our Heavenly Father’s words produce positive results?

God intends for us to use His word in combat 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). Quoting Scripture when under attack forces the enemy into retreat. But there is an underlying, stronger force than mere repetition of words written by prophets and eye witnesses. In fact if you don’t tap into that force, spouting memory verses at Satan will get you as far as a plastic sword against a fully-equipped army tank.

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See you in a twinkling,

Brenda K. Hendricks

What’s on Your Head?

Spiritual Warfare

Part 8

But since we belong to the day, let us be sober, putting on faith and love as a breastplate, and the hope of salvation as a helmet.  For God did not appoint us to suffer wrath but to receive salvation through our Lord Jesus Christ. (1 Thessalonians 5:8-9 NIV)

 

I recently attended a costume party. People adorned their heads with everything from curly wigs to lighted buckets, from tiaras to goggles, from cowboy hats to alien heads complete with buggy eyes and antennae.

While all brought a little laughter, none would’ve proven beneficial in combat. Throughout history people have worn headgear to intimate their enemies and to protect their heads. Native Americans wore impressive, massive headdresses incorporating feathers, animal pelts, bones, jaws, and even heads of fierce beasts. They did this to make themselves look bigger, scarier, and mightier than their foe.
In Biblical times, Roman soldiers wore plumes on their helmets. A soldier decked out in his military garb and helmet marching down the streets in Jerusalem struck fear in the hearts of the people. Not only did the helmets frighten defenseless people on the streets, the headgear warded off the blows of the enemy on the battlefield.
As effective as these headdresses and helmets were in their day, they would do little to intimate or protect against today’s warfare. They would do even less in spiritual combat.

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Next Week:

Prepare by reading, pondering, and praying about Ephesians 6:10-17. The more we study this passage the better prepared for battle we’ll be.

See you in a twinkling,
Brenda K. Hendricks

Fatal Faith

Spiritual Warfare

Part 7

Praise be to the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ! In his great mercy he has given us new birth into a living hope through the resurrection of Jesus Christ from the dead, and into an inheritance that can never perish, spoil or fade. This inheritance is kept in heaven for you, who through faith are shielded by God’s power until the coming of the salvation that is ready to be revealed in the last time. (1 Peter 1:3-5 NIV)

 

SHIELD OF FAITHEngaged in brutal combat, Bernardo the Belligerent swung his shield to the left, warding off a flaming arrow. He tilted the hunk of metal over his head to escape the blow of a sword and pivoted in time to thrust his own sword through the heart of an enemy soldier.

Bernardo plunged the tip of his shield into the ground. Crouching behind it, he took aim with his bow and arrow. He fought diligently until the enemies attack seemed to subside.

He sank to his knees behind his shield and surveyed the area. Soldiers lay dead or dying all around him…some his foes, some his friends. The stench and terror of the battle crushed his soul. He stood and walked away, leaving his shield stuck in the blood drench sod.

Bernardo died that day.

 

During spiritual warfare…

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Next Week:

Prepare by reading, pondering, and pray about Ephesians 6:10-17. The more we study this passage the better prepared for battle we’ll be.

See you in a twinkling,
Brenda K. Hendricks

What’s on Your Feet?

Spiritual Warfare

Part 6

Stand firm then…with your feet fitted with the readiness that comes from the gospel of peace.   (Ephesians 6:14-15)

Peace BootsSince the beginning of the year, my family has been inflicted with issues of all sorts and every one of them have taken a bite out of our wallets.

Both my daughters have been diagnosed with gallstones. One daughter has had her gallbladder removed, while the other one awaits the insurance and grace periods at her new job to kick in. Their children have had bouts with intestinal flu, bronchitis, and ear infections. The younger daughter has had two flat tires that needed replaced, a water heater die, and an unexpected health care bill amounting to $700. As well as the aforementioned health issues, the older daughter had been hit hard with high fuel/heating costs and a deceased refrigerator.

A month or so ago, my mother had a pout with her heart and ended up…

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Next Week:

Prepare by reading, pondering, and pray about Ephesians 6:10-17. The more we study this passage the better prepared for battle we’ll be.

 

See you in a twinkling,

Brenda K. Hendricks