No one had to convince Ted and me that Satan is real. We came out of his realm into peace with God through Christ when we were 20. Immediately we were attacked by the father of lies who was lurking, waiting to render us inoperative. His goal: (always) fruitlessness. You can take that to the bank. Together Ted and I entered into Warfare Course 101. By the time my partner left for Heaven we had received Doctoral degrees in fighting the mastor of psychology himself. Since Ted left the imposter has attacked me every which way but loose and he fights dirty. Our Abba, however, has his angels polish my armor to a shiney sheen regularly because it gets very blood-caked some days.
The closer Thanksgiving came, the more I was longing for reinforcements on my battle field and they came! Around our dining table were fewer members of Ted’s and my beloved family but we set places for both Ted and Doug. Five of our six grandchildren were here and the sixth one wanted to be. Lauren, Granddaughter #2 read Joshua 4:1-7 (regarding the twelve stones), her dad, Jeff, prayed, then each grandchild was specifically prayed for by an adult. For several days we have gathered around each other and the throne, stronger in our committment than ever to help one another fight the good fight with intelligent combat, to stand fast in the faith and be strong in the Lord in the midst of the battle in this dark and evil world. The Bible states that all human beings are victims of dark, invisible forces, but only believers can be VICTORS over them.
In Luke 11 Jesus was casting out demons. This ministry was continually questioned by those who chose to approach the scriptures intellectually, for they did not like this business of delving into another realm that they could not explain. Who DOES, for Pete’s sake? The sensationalists, maybe, but sensationalism comes at too high a cost for me. Anyway, the whole scenario in Luke 11 is the finest of “reads” because Jesus Himself wrote it! Look at verses 20-23. “But if I drive out demons by the finger of God then the Kingdom of God has come to you. When a strong man, fully armed, guards his own house, his possessions are safe. But when someone stronger attacks and overpowers him, he takes away the armor in which the man trusted and divides up the spoils. He who is not with me is against me and he who does not gather with me, scatters.” Who is the “strong man”? Satan. What is the “house”? The world. Who are the “possessions”? The human race. Three great principals emerge: 1) Humanity, alone against Satan, is powerless and hopeless. 2) Only the “good news” of the Gospel of Jesus Christ can break the grip of the “bad news” of the devil. 3) There is no neutrality in spiritual warfare. You either stand with Christ--or against Him.
Now the house is quiet for all have scattered to their own places. Before leaving, ready hands tended to accumulated needed repairs: The all-night light on Ted’s headstone is set for another six months; my dishwasher is repaired; food leftovers have been devoured or tossed; the wood supply for the office stove is replenished; the sprinkler system is shut down for the winter; the toilet bowl thingamajiggie is working again in one of the guest bathrooms; the beds all have fresh linens, ready for whoever comes for a night or two of encouragement and rest, the floors are vacuumed and scrubbed and we are all recharged by the deep spiritual partnership that binds my family together by the shed blood of our Saviour, the Lord Jesus Christ.
From the old hymn, "Oh, For A Thousand Tongues To Sing"
HE breaks the power of canceled sin; He sets the prisoner free;
His blood can make the foulest clean; His blood availed for me.