40 Day Challenge, Fasting, Spiritual Disciplines

Day Thirteen = Wrestle Mania (40 day fasting challenge)

Day Thirteen = Wrestle Mania

For we do not wrestle against flesh and blood, but against the rulers, against the authorities, against the cosmic powers over this present darkness, against the spiritual forces of evil in the heavenly places (Eph. 6:12)

Have you ever been to a wrestling match? If not, let me give you a basic run down. The wrestlers, who have been training for a long time before this match come out one at a time as they are announced and applauded by the crowds. After both wrestlers are in the ring, they remove their outer robes and go to their respective corners where their coaches and trainers are standing by just outside the ring. In their corner, the coaches give them last-minute advice and strategy pointers that may help them win their fight.

According to the Apostle Paul, you and I are in a wrestling match. Our opponent is none other than the Gates of Hell itself, not a physical attribute but a spiritual one. The roaring crowds are the saints who have gone on before. Right now, in your devotional time, you are sitting in your corner waiting for that last-minute advice before you take center ring in the outside world. So, here are some pointers for you that will help in giving your enemy a knockout:

1. Resist the enemy. This piece of advice comes direct from the first church where James instructs “Resist the devil, and he will flee from you.” (James 4:7) In other words, don’t just stand there and let him hit you; Resist Him! There are two keys to resisting. The first is the Word of god. The Psalmist advises us to hide it in our hearts (Ps. 119:11). When you know the Word then you can use the Word. The second key to resisting is humility. Again James instructed that to be lifted up one must first humble themselves before the Lord (James 4:10). The enemy can use your own pride against you. Don’t defeat yourself, stay humble knowing that the fight is not yours but the Lord’s.

2. Maintain positive relationships. One thing you do not do in a wrestling match is listen to the voices in the crowd. Some of them may be against you. The Bible says “Do not be deceived: “Bad company ruins good morals.” (1 Cor. 15:33) Listen to encouraging words and positive reinforcement. Negativity is a form of distraction which the enemy deploys against you.

3. Abide in Christ and His Word. Jesus shared a story to his disciples about a vine pruner and his vines. In this story the vine pruner keeps a good watch on the vines. When he finds any dead branches he quickly cuts them off and throws them into the fire to be burned. Using this to give a spiritual story, Jesus taught that the branches have to be connected to the root of the vine if it wants to keep healthy and vibrant. He then declared that He [Jesus] was the root and that they were the branches. To keep healthy and strong so as to escape a fiery end we need to keep connected to Christ. Your determination to the Lord determines how long you can stay in the fight. Jesus went even further to say that “If you abide in me, and my words abide in you, ask whatever you wish, and it will be done for you.” (John 15:7)

4. Praise God. David had the right frame of mind when he sang these words: “In God, whose word I praise, in God I trust; I shall not be afraid. What can flesh do to me?” (Psalm 56:4) This was his song when the Philistines had seized him in the town of Gath. The enemy will always use some other fleshly or material object to get you down. {Much like wrestlers using folding chairs.} But David knew from the Word that God’s hand of protection is greater. When your opponent seizes you, just Praise God and sing: “What can flesh do to me?”

5. Claim Christ’s authority over evil as is sanctioned in the Word.Paul warned to the church not to forget their position in Christ. He said “For freedom Christ has set us free; stand firm therefore, and do not submit again to a yoke of slavery.” (Gal. 5:1) We have been called to live free. Free from oppression, depression, corruption, disruption and all other forms of spiritual impediment. You do not have to be held down by your wrestling opponent. You are free from all of his clutches. Not only this, but we have authority through Christ to hold the enemy down, down under our feet. “And he put all things under his feet and gave him as head over all things to the church, which is his body, the fullness of him who fills all in all.” (Eph. 1:22-23) This positional authority is taught in the Word of God.

As coach and trainer, my advice to you before you wrestle today is; Read the Word, Pray fervently, and stay on track with your fasting routine. You will win!

Advertisements

1 thought on “Day Thirteen = Wrestle Mania (40 day fasting challenge)”

  1. I’ve fatsed from food, but you mention an element here that I really hadn’t considered. (A ‘duh’ moment for me.) … that when I fast, I get to CHOOSE to go without food. Your post will undoubtedly enrich my next fast. Thanks for that, Michelle.

Share your thoughts

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s