“If I were your enemy, I’d disguise myself and manipulate your perspectives so that you’d focus on the wrong culprit–your husband, your friend, your hurt, your finances, anything or anyone except me. Because when you zero in on the most convenient, obvious places to strike back against your problems, you get the impression you’re fighting for something. Even though all you’re really doing is just…fighting. For nothing” –Priscilla Shirer in Fervent (39).
Over the next few posts, I am reading and reviewing Fervent: A Woman’s Battle Plan for Serious, Specific, and Strategic Prayer by Priscilla Shirer. Today, I’m sharing some thoughts from “Strategy 2–Your Focus: Fighting the Real Enemy.”
I’m sure we all have experienced those times when we are upset about something and expending lots of energy and frustration arguing or worrying about that situation. In Fervent, Shirer reminds us that one of Satan’s strategies against us is to steal our focus. He keeps us sidetracked and sidelined, as we deal with what we perceive to be our battle, all while he is causing strife, misery, and discontent in our lives, our families, and our churches.
Shirer shares passages from Ephesians to direct our attention back to our real enemy–not the people around us but the enemy of our souls.
Fervent gives us insight into the spiritual weapons of our warfare and how we can combine Scripture with “focused and strategic” prayer to win our spiritual battles. Shirer encourages us to ask God to show us those areas in our lives where Satan is at work against us, so that we can refocus our attention. I love this quote:
“Once the unseen enemy is exposed and comes into clear view, you can lift your focus away from the people, places, and events that have always seemed like the main culprits of your human dramas and stop wasting your energy on methods that are ineffective and, honestly, flat-out exhausting” (50).
“Human dramas.” I can relate. They are totally exhausting. But can you imagine what God can do with families and churches that are willing to go into battle against the real enemy, armed with the Word of God, and standing together with each other instead of fighting against each other?
I don’t know about you, but I’m ready to get my focus back.
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