spiritual warfare and our feelings

There is a war happening all around us. This war is being fought in the spiritual realm, and it is over our heart and mind. God and his angels battling with Satan and his demons, both fighting for our love and attention and devotion. We can’t necessarily see this war with our eyes, but we are very much a part of it and effected by it.

For we do not wrestle against flesh and blood, but against the rulers, against the authorities, against the cosmic powers over this present darkness, against the spiritual forces of evil in the heavenly places. (Ephesians 6:12)

Even though we can’t see this war taking place, we definitely see and feel the effects of this war. It happens much more than we sometimes even realize or admit. Those who are battling in the spiritual realm do not get tired, therefore they can continue to battle constantly. So it can happen at any moment, whether we are aware and prepared or not.

That is why in Ephesians 6:10-13 it talks about being strong or standing strong 4 times: Verse 10 says “be strong in the Lord“, verse 11 says “to stand against“, and verse 13 says “to be able to stand” and “to stand firm“. We are reminded a lot in those verses to stand strong…which shows that we need to be ready to fight at all times because the battle can come at any moment.

In this war, the thing that we must guard the most is our feelings and emotions. We must constantly work very hard to keep our feelings and emotions in check, grounded upon truth, and standing strong. Feelings and emotions have a lot of power and control over our heart and mind…over what we love and pay attention to and are devoted to. And in this war, that is what is being fought over.

Our feelings and emotions can quickly get off track, causing us to think off track about things within our life. It doesn’t take much either if we are not actively protecting them. One little feeling or emotional thought is all it takes to head down a wrong path. And it can happen very quickly too! I know for me, I can have one fearful thought, and within moments all kinds of crazy thoughts and feelings are running around my head. I can go from being calm to feeling so anxious I can barely move within mere seconds if I allow my feelings and emotions to run wild.

That can happen to any of us. And its different feelings and emotions that can trigger it for each of us as well. For some it’s fear, for some it’s doubt, some it’s anxiety, for others it can be insecurity, anger, pain, frustration, worry, loneliness, depression, “just not feeling it” (which is a feeling as well) and so on.

This is why our feelings and emotions need to be guarded so strongly, because they are very susceptible to attack. Our enemy Satan knows how our feelings and emotions can quickly lead us in a wrong direction, and even keep us in that place for a long time, so he will seek to attack our feelings and emotions regularly. He is out to destroy us after all (1 Peter 5:8), and he will do so however he is able.

When our feelings and emotions are off track, it can be difficult to get back on track. We can begin to believe what we are feeling, or we might even begin to mistake our feelings and emotions for rational thought when we are in the midst of the struggle and attacks.

So what do we do to get our heart and mind back on track? We have to focus on and stand on truth. Not what we feel or think is truth, but what is actual truth. Truth that is not based on us and how we feel at all. God’s Truth.

In Ephesians 6, when it begins to talk through the armor of God that we need to fight against Satan, the first piece of armor it mentions is the “belt of truth” (Ephesians 6:14). That is not a coincidence, it’s listed first for a reason. We must stand on truth before we can do anything else to fight against Satan’s attacks.

Below are a few helpful verses to remain grounded on God’s Truth again (besides the verses in Ephesians 6 which I mentioned above).

Three times I pleaded with the Lord about this, that it should leave me. But he said to me, “My grace is sufficient for you, for my power is made perfect in weakness.” Therefore I will boast all the more gladly of my weaknesses, so that the power of Christ may rest upon me. For the sake of Christ, then, I am content with weaknesses, insults, hardships, persecutions, and calamities. For when I am weak, then I am strong. (2 Corinthians 12:8-10)

for God gave us a spirit not of fear but of power and love and self-control. Therefore do not be ashamed of the testimony about our Lord, nor of me his prisoner, but share in suffering for the gospel by the power of God, who saved us and called us to a holy calling, not because of our works but because of his own purpose and grace (2 Timothy 1:7-9)

But when the goodness and loving kindness of God our Savior appeared, he saved us, not because of works done by us in righteousness, but according to his own mercy, by the washing of regeneration and renewal of the Holy Spirit, whom he poured out on us richly through Jesus Christ our Savior, so that being justified by his grace we might become heirs according to the hope of eternal life (Titus 3:4-7)

The earth is the Lord’s and the fullness thereof, the world and those who dwell therein, for he has founded it upon the seas and established it upon the rivers. (Psalms 24:1-2)

Trust in the Lord with all your heart, and do not lean on your own understanding. In all your ways acknowledge him, and he will make straight your paths (Proverbs 3:5-6)

Blessed is the man who walks not in the counsel of the wicked, nor stands in the way of sinners, nor sits in the seat of scoffers; but his delight is in the law of the Lord, and on his law he meditates day and night. He is like a tree planted by streams of water that yields its fruit in its season, and its leaf does not wither. In all that he does, he prospers. (Psalms 1:1-3)

Grace to you and peace from God our Father and the Lord Jesus Christ, who gave himself for our sins to deliver us from the present evil age, according to the will of our God and Father, to whom be the glory forever and ever. Amen. (Galatians 1:3-5)

For the grace of God has appeared, bringing salvation for all people, training us to renounce ungodliness and worldly passions, and to live self-controlled, upright, and godly lives in the present age, waiting for our blessed hope, the appearing of the glory of our great God and Savior Jesus Christ, who gave himself for us to redeem us from all lawlessness and to purify for himself a people for his own possession who are zealous for good works (Titus 2:11-14)

Many are the plans in the mind of a man, but it is the purpose of the Lord that will stand (Proverbs 19:21)