I hung up the phone and leaned back in my chair. Humbled. Reeling, a little. Not understanding why things happen the way they do in this life. I squeezed my eyes shut, feeling tears edge out on my eyelashes.
It was a quiet, rainy Saturday. I was drinking coffee and working my way through verse mapping in Romans when I received a text message from a friend. She’d been through the worst week imaginable – they were poised to bury her grandson after his sudden death. And she reached out to talk to me.
Up to that point, I’d had one of those weeks– fighting a nasty early-autumn cold, battling arrows of a packed schedule with work and kids, and the uncertainty surrounding some upcoming decisions for our family’s future. In those moments, these things seemed very BIG to me. They’d been weighing me down, making me feel weak. Near broken, if I’m honest. And totally unprepared for battle. When I crumbled under the pressures of daily life, I felt like a failure because I wasn’t handling the fight very well.
Until I talked with my friend.
She was faithful but broken. Strong but weak. Ever-trusting God, even in the midst of complete uncertainty and unimaginable grief. We prayed together, and I tried my best to offer encouragement. But what happened as a result was the exact opposite– she encouraged me.
It’s not giving up to ask for help. It’s going back into battle with your chin notched and your eyes locked.
Pick up your sword!
That’s what I kept thinking. It’s not weak to cry out to God, saying, “I’m broken. I can’t do this alone!” In fact, it’s the opposite. When I’m at my weakest, God’s at His strongest. When I’m weary, He’s steadfast. When I’m disappointed, shamed, humbled, bruised and broken, that’s when He’s ready to step in and claim the victory on my behalf.
When my eyes are LOCKED ON JESUS, there’s strength to go on fighting. Why? Because He’s stepping in front, deflecting the arrows for my sake. And I realized that reaching out, getting real, and asking for His help… it’s not about throwing in the towel as a soldier. It’s certainly not about admitting defeat. It’s about picking up the sword and going into battle — knocking Satan flat because our Savior, Christ Jesus, has entered the fight for me.
“You will not need to fight in this battle. Stand firm, hold your position, and see the salvation of the LORD on your behalf, O Judah and Jerusalem. Do not be afraid and do not be dismayed. Tomorrow go out against them, and the LORD will be with you.”
—2 Chronicles 20:17 (ESV)
Lazy Saturdays don’t seem a likely candidate to be labeled battleground days. But I came away from a prayer-filled phone conversation with a renewed fervor to fight. To lean in to Jesus. To surrender MY will in place of HIS.
When you’re too weary to fight, when you’re broken and just plain exhausted, do the counter-intuitive thing and step back into the ring– confident, because you’re not alone.
Pick up your sword!
To His fight,