When I was first learning how to ride a horse, the instructor kept telling me to keep my eyes up. She’d call out, telling me to keep my eyes forward, keep them up, look in the direction I wanted the horse to go. This didn’t make any sense to me. I thought the reins were for directing the horse. I thought the pressure from my legs was supposed to guide the horse left or right. Why would my instructor be so worried about where I was looking? Much later I read the Bible, Matthew 14:25-31.
This excerpt tells of the time Jesus walked on the water across a lake. His disciples thought what they saw was a ghost. To be sure Jesus was who he said he was, Peter asked to walk out to Jesus on the water. Our Lord told him to come and Peter did so, but when he took his eyes off Jesus he began to sink into the water. Looking at the wind and the waves created by the storm made Peter afraid. He forgot his faith. Peter forgot the storm was already raging when he began to walk on the water, but when he began his walk his eyes were on Jesus. I tell you all this in order to tell you about a spiritual battle I had overcome by recognizing the battle and choosing to fight back.
Employee evaluations were coming up at work one fall. I was struggling with worry and discouragement. I was given a questionnaire to fill out prior to meeting my boss and, at the time I answered the questions, I was extremely frustrated with my territory manager and the general manager of the company. I filled out my part of the questionnaire a little candidly, and on one part wrote:
I don’t appreciate being threatened with my job, especially when it’s over things I cannot control.
When my territory manager asked me to explain my answer, I told him I did not plan on being a single parent. I didn’t have any control over daycare being $160 per week in the summer, and I couldn’t control low grain prices causing the farmers to tighten their belts. I was expecting to get scolded for being so negative. Honestly, I was expecting to get fired. Instead my boss agreed with me! He said the general manager needed to know this information, and he was going to discuss it with his boss the following week!
The outcome of my evaluation was a direct result of my choices immediately prior to the meeting. I was worried about my evaluation. I was focused on my potential problems, not on God, which means I was not remembering how much he had done for me. I was not trusting him, and apart from God I felt fear, worry, and discomfort. Recognizing this, I pulled up one of my favorite songs “Days of Elijah” and listened to it a few times. I spoke out loud, and told Jesus I chose to trust him regardless of how I felt. I opened my Bible app, and set it to read out loud Psalms of victory and protection. By recognizing I was under spiritual attack, and choosing to fight back, I gained the victory.
I chose to believe the truth of what I knew instead of the lies I felt.
As a result, I felt better and was able to receive God’s protection and blessing.
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