Pastor Mark lists some of the enemy’s favorite battle plans for shooting good soldiers.
Dear ministry leader,
Thank you for loving Jesus and serving God’s people.
Odds are, you are pretty much fried to a crisp right now. The run from January through Easter is the busiest and most exhausting time of the year. For those of us in dark climates, the lack of sun and fresh air does not help at all. Due to the long hours, stress, and frequent interaction with so many people, you are probably recovering from a sickness, battling a sickness, or fighting not to get a sickness.
We serve a God who has been there and knows how to get up.
But Easter is coming. And you know it’s the biggest day of the year. It’s the one day of the year that everyone actually shows up, people tend to be happy, and it feels like a little dress rehearsal for the kingdom of God.
Between now and then, the enemy, Satan, will be up to his usual tricks, trying to throw water on the gospel fire that you’ve been stacking wood for all winter. In my experience, here are some of his favorite battle plans for shooting good soldiers:
The enemy will try and drain your life energy. Emergency, crisis, financial stress, family drama, you name it. Needy, demanding people with a sense of entitlement will keep knocking on your door if you allow them, until your tank is empty and your vision is gone.
The enemy will try and drain your joy. He will make accusations related to everything you’ve ever done and everyone you’ve ever failed, beating you until you are a zombie. Critics will demand your time and energy, and anyone you’ve ever hurt or failed will make sure to get their licks in before the biggest gospel harvest of the year.
The enemy will create, drama, trauma, and tragedy to distract you from the opportunity to get the gospel out. It’s a diversionary tactic.
The enemy will increase his efforts to tempt you to do something sinful and stupid so that you either don’t get an opportunity to get the gospel out or, if you do, you are so guilt-ridden and panic-stricken that you pull all your punches and blow all your opportunities.
You may feel like you are dying a little bit every day. The good news is we serve a God who has been there and knows how to get up. His Word to you is 2 Timothy 2:3–4: “Share in suffering as a good soldier of Christ Jesus. No soldier gets entangled in civilian pursuits, since his aim is to please the one who enlisted him.”