Updated: Aug 5
This Means War
by Jon Reeverts
When my outdoor work subsided in the spring, I took to painting through summer. And one thing led to another. I had begun to create a space to set my mind for battle in 3-D
(Spirit, Soul and Body).
A LITTLE CONTEXT..., Several years ago I was pounding out some reps in the high school weight room, when my close friend, Ken Sharp, came through. It led to your typical “what’s happening” conversation. I told him I was fighting off the effects of aging with everything else I had going on.
On his way out, he turned back and jibbed, “Just so you know… you’re gonna lose.”
Well, he’s been right… and wrong.
Let’s face it, staying in shape is more than a challenge - one of his latest quips was passed on from his amazing father, Jim. I want to put this one on a t-shirt.
“Growin’ old ain’t for sissies!”
Yet, the beauty is that we can set our minds to impact our body, soul and spirit.
There is a spiritual battle.
When I ask people (both unbelievers and believers in Jesus Christ)
“Is there a spiritual world?” Almost immediately they respond, “Oh yes!”
Well, I agree.
I look in my Bible and see that it also agrees. Satan shows up on page 12 of my Bible and exits - defeated - on page 2224. If we all agree it’s there, isn’t it a good idea to pay more attention to it than we usually do?
I honestly set my mind for battle against these spiritual forces (See Ephesians 6), because, I am told to do so.
I also know that the battle is for the mind. My mind is part of my soul as are my will and emotions. Satan wants to toy with my soul, just as much as he wants to mess with yours. So… I set my mind on the things above (Philippians 4) so that my soul rests in God’s power and authority. That gives me peace. (Galatians 5:22) “He restores my soul.” (Psalm 23)
Experiencing the battle in my body is a temporary thing. We are all only here for a few seasons - we all have an eternal destiny - heavenly or otherwise. In this respect Ken’s comment was right, but I still want this temple-my body to reflect God’s presence and also His authority. So, even in my fight against cancer, I ask God to express His regenerative Life in me. I remind myself that my Savior’s blood flows through my veins and His Holy Spirit renews my mind. (Romans 12:1-2) How can it hurt to do that at the beginning and end of my day?
This battle goes on in all three areas of my being - Spirit, Soul and Body.
The victory (Romans 8) is that “nothing can separate me from the fullness of Christ” - He’s got me! In that respect, Ken was wrong. I’ve already won. Ephesians 2: 6 says that I am seated in heaven right now with my Savior. Seated-past tense. That’s victory! To do battle from that mindset changes the entire game. I’m not waiting for someday victory; I can live in it now and align my mind, will and emotions to follow suit, no matter my circumstances.
So, even though the battle is real, I stand well-armored against the onslaught of my foe. (Ephesians 6)
A few years ago Jenny and I watched a movie that really grabbed us, WAR ROOM (click to see trailer). It reminds me to put to prayer the immense, big, moderate and especially the little things in life.
Why the little things?
During my life, I’ve worked for some incredible educational leaders. Several that I butted heads with before they became my administrator. One particular principal that impacted my life, I had first had conflict with as I was a coach, as he was a hard-nosed basketball referee. He “T’d” me up more than once. When he became the principal at our high school, my respect grew immensely. He was a tough guy, and he didn’t cut kids any slack.
At one point, one of the guys managed to get about 15 feet into the school without removing his hat - Jerry McVicker respectfully ripped him a new one. It was taken care of and never was an issue again. A little later I asked him about it - “A little hard on him for a hat, don’t you think?” Jerry said, “Jon, take care of the little things and the big things will take care of themselves.” He was right from a leadership standpoint. Kids respected his authority and his desire to see them succeed. Little things took care of big things.
In the spiritual world, sin sits at the threshold of our minds seeking to devour us. If we begin to let the little things slip, we entertain sin’s suggestions; next our minds play out the scenarios, then… SLIP… we have devised a plan and in our daily lives we fall. (See Genesis 2 -4)
Experience enough of these failures and sin convinces us we are hopeless and must be under the authority of his master, the devil.
It’s not true! Once saved - always saved! We can’t undo the cross of salvation!
So, Paul tells us to take every thought captive (2 Corinthians 10:3) bringing those compromising, sloppy, irresponsible ideas under submission to Christ. We let Him handle the little things, tenaciously ripping them apart, so that they don’t trip us up. Experiencing victory in the little things over and over helps us to be confident in big things.
"He who is faithful in a very little thing is faithful also in much; and he who is unrighteous in a very little thing is unrighteous also in much.” (Luke 16:10)
Seeing this big picture helps us to know that we can’t lose a battle that’s already been won. We are already seated at the right hand in the heavenly places. (Ephesians 2)
More than ten years ago, our son Canaan worked to be on a traveling basketball team. He would drive to Denver twice a week to practice and then played all over the country. His teammates were from Denver, one went on to play at Arizona - they affectionately gave Canaan a nickname - "Wonder Bread" - He was the only white guy on the team :)
At one point the team loaded up their rickety old van at the Stapleton Doubletree. Parents all said their goodbyes and sent their well-wishes, but an elderly 5 foot nothing 80 year-old black lady was the last to speak - she pushed her way up to the van and rained down prayers of protection, power, encouragement and love over the kids, the van and their mission.
I learned a lot that day - there is power in prayer! And, an authority in those who possess the Life of Christ!
A few years ago, Our good friends Randy and Shelly Peterson gave us a powerful book on prayer - Draw the Circle by Mark Batterson. Reading that impacted our lives greatly. We have given a copy to each of our kids. Prayer Is Powerful! Don't stop praying!
Jenny and I now have a War Room. It’s a place I like to go to workout for my physical needs, but also a place I unpack my soul. It’s even a Spiritual refuge for me. My workout becomes intertwined with my prayers for those around me. Because my Spirit-Soul-Body do not function in isolation, I want to live conscious of my full image-bearing life of Christ.
John 15:4-5 says: Remain in me, as I also remain in you. No branch can bear fruit by itself; it must remain in the vine. Neither can you bear fruit unless you remain in me. 5 “I am the vine; you are the branches. If you remain in me and I in you, you will bear much fruit; apart from me you can do nothing.
We have invited our kids to begin to add their own favorite verses to these walls. We feel it will resonate with the life of Christ as His Word is impressed on our lives.
Since the battle is real...
Fight well, my friends!