I think we can all agree there are few places darker than the sidewalk at 7:00 in the morning. I am not just referring to the physical darkness, but the spiritual darkness that is real and active. Here are a few basic truths that I have come to realize concerning spiritual warfare on the sidewalk:
1. Absolutely Expect to Experience It
1 Peter 5:8 tells us “Be sober-minded; be watchful. Your adversary the devil prowls around like a roaring lion, seeking someone to devour.” In the same book Peter writes ”Beloved, do not be surprised at the fiery trial when it comes upon you to test you, as though something strange were happening to you (4:12).
I have not met anyone involved in the last three years who has been exempt from spiritual warfare while participating in this ministry. It may manifest itself in nightmares, fear, impatience, doubt, marital strife, discouragement, or other forms of attack. I myself, have failed in many ways in remembering these passages periodically. I have not been sober-minded or watchful. I have been surprised at the struggles I have faced as a result of participating in this ministry. Yet, God’s Word reminds us that we have an enemy who would delight in destroying us. Instead of ignoring these attacks, we can and must expect to experience spiritual warfare.
2. Arm Yourself With the Word
As we are watching, Praise the Lord that we have the best weapon in defending ourselves ! We have the Word of God. Paul writes that we have “the sword of the Spirit, which is the word of God, “(Eph 6:17). As I have sought to do things outside of my comfort zone and/or strength, I have found it most helpful to give myself to the Word daily, and to memorize passages or complete chapters of Scripture. This way, I can recite them to myself at any given moment, or to others (whether it be clients or fellow Christians). Had I never experienced this kind of spiritual warfare, I would most likely never have done so. I thank the Lord for these opportunities.
3. Give Yourself to Prayer
And this is the confidence that we have toward him, that if we ask anything according to his will he hears us. And if we know that he hears us in whatever we ask, we know that we have the requests that we have asked of him. – 1 John 5:14-15
We must be praying constantly! (1 Thes 5:17). Our Resource Guide includes two pages (21-22) dedicated to guiding us in prayer throughout the week. Commit to praying daily for those going in for abortions, and for the abortion clinic to close to the glory of God. Pray for your brothers and sisters doing sidewalk counseling that they would not believe Satan’s lies. (If you don’t pray for them, who will?) Fast and Pray. Pray against any schemes of the devil, not just Friday night, but daily. What a privilege that we can have constant communication with the God of the universe who hears our prayers and is able to answer them far more abundantly than we ask or think!
Praise the Lord that He sees us worthy to walk through these trials!
“Blessed is the man who remains steadfast under trial, for when he has stood the test he will receive the crown of life, which God has promised to those who love him.” James 1:12