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What Happened When I Laid Down My Weapon





For the weapons of our warfare 
are not of the flesh 
but have divine power 
to destroy strongholds.
2 Corinthians 10:4

The current hotly debated  topic of gun control has caused me to reflect upon the handling of my own weapon...  a weapon that I have recently laid down with dire consequences...

I'm not someone who thinks about Satan being "behind every bush" or dwells on thoughts of Satan in any way.  

But lately, as I struggle in a spiritual funk, I realize that I have indeed allowed myself to come under spiritual attack...  

My desire for spiritual things has been waning.   My prayer life is not what it used to be.   My old, besetting sinful habits are resurfacing.  I have been pulling away from time at church outside of Sunday mornings.   I am physically fatigued.   I feel overwhelmed, pulled in many different directions...

I have essentially abandoned my "first love".  Rev 2:4

Why?  Because I voluntarily laid down my weapon...  My weapon against spiritual warfare...

Sounds pretty much like Satan's modus operandi, doesn't it?  A chapter right out of C.S. Lewis' Screwtape Letters where Screwtape gives Wormwood detailed advice on various methods of undermining faith and of promoting sin in "the Patient".

We can learn much about the importance of keeping our weapons drawn and ready at all times for the attacks of the devil from Screwtape himself!

Screwtape says...

"Indeed the safest road to Hell is the gradual one—the gentle slope, soft underfoot, without sudden turnings, without milestones, without signposts."

But God says...

Enter through the narrow gate. For wide is the gate and broad is 
the road that leads to destruction, and many enter through it.  But small is 
the gate and narrow the road that leads to life, and only a few find it.
Matthew 7:13-14

And a highway will be there; it will be called the Way of Holiness; it will be for those who walk on that Way. The unclean will not journey on it; wicked fools will not go about on it.
Isaiah 35:8

Therefore everyone who hears these words of mine and puts them into practice is like a wise man who built his house on the rock.  The rain came down, the streams rose, and the winds blew and beat against that house; yet it did not fall, because it had its foundation on the rock.  But everyone who hears these words of mine and does not put them into practice is like a foolish man who built his house on sand.  The rain came down, the streams rose, and the winds blew and beat against that house, and it fell with a great crash.
Matthew 7:24-27

For You will not abandon my soul to Sheol; Nor will You allow Your Holy One to undergo decay. You will make known to me the path of life; In Your presence is fullness of joy; 
In Your right hand there are pleasures forever.
Psalm 16:11

Screwtape says...

"It is funny how mortals always picture us as putting things into their minds: in reality our best work is done by keeping things out."

But God says...

Finally, brothers, whatever is true, whatever is honorable, whatever is right, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is admirable — if anything is excellent or praiseworthy — think on these things. Whatever you have learned and received and heard from me, and seen in me, put these things into practice. And the God of peace will be with you.…
Philippians 4:8

Screwtape says...


"There is nothing like suspense and anxiety for barricading a human’s mind against the Enemy (God). He wants men to be concerned with what they do; our business is to keep them thinking about what will happen to them."

But God says...

You keep him in perfect peace whose mind is stayed on you, because he trusts in you.
Isaiah 26:3

Trust in the LORD with all your heart and lean not on your own understanding;  in all your ways submit to him, and he will make your paths straight.
Proverbs 3:5-6

Do not be anxious about anything, but in every situation, by prayer and petition, with thanksgiving, present your requests to God.  And the peace of God, which transcends all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus.
Philippians 4:6-7

We destroy arguments and every lofty opinion raised against the knowledge of God, and take every thought captive to obey Christ,
2 Corinthians 10:5

Screwtape says...

"If once they get through this initial dryness successfully, they become much less dependent on emotion and therefore much harder to tempt."

But God says...

...Satan has asked to sift each of you like wheat. But I have prayed for you... that your faith will not fail. And when you have turned back, strengthen your brothers.
Luke 22:31-32

God makes a home for the lonely; He leads out the prisoners into prosperity,
 Only the rebellious dwell in a parched land.
Psalm 68:6

Behold, days are coming," declares the Lord GOD, "When I will send a famine on the land, Not a famine for bread or a thirst for water, But rather for hearing the words of the LORD.
Amos 8:11

 Restore to me the joy of Your salvation And sustain me with a willing spirit.
Psalm 51:12



Can you relate to how I've been feeling lately?  Have you laid down your weapon?

We must persevere and hold firm to our faith.

Be on the alert, stand firm in the faith, act like men, be strong.
1 Corinthians 16:13

But resist him, firm in your faith, knowing that the same experiences of suffering are being accomplished by your brethren who are in the world.
1 Peter 5:9


How do we persevere?  By always carrying our weapon...

Our weapon of persistent prayer

Our weapon of time in the Word

Our weapon of Scripture memorization

Our weapon of fellowship with other Believers

Our weapon of service in our churches and communities

And above all, our weapon of the Cross of Christ


Let us pick up our weapons and fight the good fight, so that we may finish the race, having kept the faith, so that we will receive the crown of righteousness which the Lord, the righteous Judge will award us on that day.  - 2 Timothy 4:7-8 




You might find me on these link-ups:
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Comments

  1. You’re reminding me that I need a re-read of Screwtape Letters myself. Such rich imagery that we can apply to our lives. I have been struggling to lasso my mind these days too. But yes, we have many great weapons. Thanks for sharing, Karen!

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    1. Lisa, C.S. Lewis certainly had a grasp of the ways of Satan.

      We are certainly Pilgrims together as we journey here on earth before our Heavenly home, but thanks be to God, He understands our every weakness and is always ready to pick us back up and say, "This is the Way, walk in it."

      Thank you for taking the time to comment.

      Blessings.

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  2. Dear friend! It made me think of the old Louvin Brothers song called "Weapon of Prayer". I was raised on their music. Ira Louvin wrote some profoundly deep spiritual songs, and if I remember correctly, this song was one he wrote. Maybe not. But, it talks about laying down our weapon of prayer. The enemy knows that if we don't pray, we will faint. Jesus told us this. Yet, we are so busy, and it takes such an intentional, concentrated effort to really persevere and make sure we get out daily prayer time in. God help us all. Another thing that came to mind from this precious post was an article my dear mother gave me years ago. It was written by someone in China many years ago, and it was describing how things would be just before Jesus comes back. One of the main points I remember was that the person was prophesying about how DIFFICULT it would be to pray. I have never had such a time fighting to pray. You are not alone, dear friend, and I so appreciate this post. It inspired and challenged me, as coming here always does. You are a precious blessing and continual encouragement to my soul. Love and appreciate you so much. God bless you abundantly for the time and heart your pour into every one of your posts.

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    Replies
    1. Cheryl, I have never heard of the Louvin Brothers before. The songs words are so right. Prayer is probably our biggest weapon, it is what keeps us abiding in Christ, who shields us in the cleft of the rock.

      I had never heard that before either about finding it difficult to pray, but it really makes sense. Just that bit of insight spurs me on to keep on praying, even when I don't feel like it, knowing that the Holy Spirit groans with words so deep.

      Awe Cheryl, you are such a blessing and encouragement to me as well. The blessings I receive from the Lord as I write my blog posts are enriched all the more with your always insightful and heartfelt comments.

      Thank you dear friend. With much love,

      Delete
  3. Karen - I totally wrote on Spiritual warfare this past week too. I love how you shared about CS Lewis' Screw-tape letters - such a powerful story of what happens in the unseen realm, but it is still very much real and true. Your neighbor today at #Unite

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    Replies
    1. Debbie, I always find it interesting when I see several bloggers writing on the same theme. I believe there are no coincidences with God. That He indeed uses "His posts" through us to speak encouragement to His children.

      Thank you so much for taking the time to comment.

      Delete
  4. Oh this post is so timely... I've been guilty of laying aside a lot of my God given weapons this week. I've never read the Screwtape Letters, though I have heard of it a lot (I may have to visit the library..!) but I love this quote you mentioned: "It is funny how mortals always picture us as putting things into their minds: in reality our best work is done by keeping things out." How true! Praying we will both continue let in only the best things this week! Happy to have found you at #sittingamongfriends !

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    Replies
    1. Thank you so much for humbly sharing your heart.

      Amen!

      I'm glad you found me. ;-) Blessings.

      Delete
  5. Great reminder to stand fast and vigilant! It is so easy to get into a funk. Thank you for sharing this encouragement on the Art of Home-Making Mondays!

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    Replies
    1. JES, Thank you for your kind words.

      You are welcome. Thank you for hosting! :-)

      Delete
  6. What a great reminder to pick up your weapon. God hasn't left us defenseless yet we don't use what God has given us and relegate ourselves to victim status. Thank you for sharing.

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    Replies
    1. Tamryn, Thank you so much for sharing in the conversation.

      You are so right, we really do "relegate ourselves to victim status". Yet we are victors in Christ Jesus.

      You are very welcome. :-)

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  7. Love The Screwtape Letters... so glad you have been able to realize the state of your faith and start again. Thank you for sharing with the Cozy Reading Spot

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    Replies
    1. Marissa, Thank you so much for taking the time to comment and offering encouragement.

      You are very welcome. :-)

      Delete
  8. Great reminder, Karen! I need to keep my weapon ready always. I love the way you wove the quotes throughout here. Oh, we are in a battle and I want to be ready! Thanks and blessings!

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    Replies
    1. Deb, Thank you for your kind words.

      Indeed we are! Praise God we have our Victory in Christ Jesus.

      Blessings,

      Delete
  9. Keeping our weapons drawn...it seems as soon as I get comfortable and lazy, that's when the attack catches me off guard. A great reminder and love the wisdom you bring to your posts!

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    Replies
    1. Crystal, You are so right about becoming too comfortable.

      Thank you so much for your kind words. You have brought me much encouragement! :-)

      Blessings,

      Delete
  10. Oh man, this is exactly where I've been this week. What an awakening to realize that I had laid down my weapons! Thanks for sharing this at Booknificent Thursday on Mommynificent.com this week! I'll be reading it again soon!
    Tina

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    Replies
    1. Tina, It happens to all of us for sure. Praise God He never gives up on us and always shows us the Way back.

      You are very welcome!

      Delete
  11. Oh, friend, I relate. The overwhelm and exhaustion. Then with it goes the passion to dig into His word and pick up our weapons. It is exactly when we SHOULD renew that passion, though!! When we are weary, refreshment comes from our time with Him! Thank you, Karen, for sharing this hope with us at Moments of Hope. I'll be praying for returned energy and strength.
    Hugs,
    Lori

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    Replies
    1. Lori, Thank you so much for adding your insights to the conversation. I appreciate it so much. :-)

      You are very welcome.

      Thank you! The Lord has already been renewing me! :-)

      Delete

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