Saturday afternoon Tim I trekked along the beach at drizzly Pacific City. Two small children played in the sand before us. In stealth mode, a sneaker wave came out of nowhere and enveloped the boy and girl. She fell. I stopped in my tracks, eyes widening. I held my breath. The children’s mother rushed to help them.
Before I knew it, that wave raced up to Tim and me. I tripped on tire tracks in the sand (probably made by a dune buggy) and fell—hard. The saltwater hit me full force. I faltered as I stood to get up. A butcher’s knife ripped through my shoulder, which later proved to be sprained.
Pacific Ocean—one. Disciple—zero.
While spending the rest of the weekend in our hotel room resting, I asked the Lord, “Okay, where are You going with this?” Sometimes we experience things in the natural that precede their occurrence in the supernatural realm. I felt Papa asked a series of what ifs.
What if we see storms approaching and fix our eyes on others—without thinking through where we need to position ourselves in that storm? What happens to us when we look at others’ imbalances without considering our own?
What if we as a Church are stumbling over ruts left by a religious spirit—constantly striving to keep traditions alive and to outperform ourselves? What if God is calling us to step aside and make fresh footprints in uncharted sands?
What if we stumble and get hurt in the process? Do we forgive ourselves when we trip up?
Years ago, I was excited when a pastor declared this truth over our city:
When the enemy shall come in like a flood, the Spirit of the LORD shall lift up a standard against him. (Isaiah 59:19, KJV)
But years later, I learned that the verse is correctly punctuated with the comma here:
When the enemy shall come in, like a flood the Spirit of the LORD shall lift up a standard against him. (Isaiah 59:19)
Picture a battlefield, a sea of men marching with a standard, which they carried overhead. That standard was a flag or banner that contained the names of the Lord. Maybe one said El Shaddai (God Almighty). Maybe another said, The Great I AM. How about Elohim (the name for God in the Hebrew Bible)? Or perhaps The Lord Our Victory. My banner would have read Jehovah, Treasure Finder. Or Holy-Spirit-of-Joy.
Like a flood, we as the Body of Christ are spread across the battlefield, saturating it with the presence of His Spirit. Maybe we’ll take a spill. But we’ll rise stronger. Bolder. Wiser. A more powerful force to be reckoned with.
What recent God-encounters in the natural have indicated to you what ‘s happening in the spirit realm?
As you engage in battle, what name appears on your banner overhead?