Being the wife of a bronze star recipient and the aunt of a purple heart recipient (who sacrificed his life for our freedom), I hesitate to even use the term “foxhole.” I can’t, however, find any word to better express what we should expect when we become vocal in our faith and intentional in our Christian journey.
If you’ve been aware of my recent silence, rest assured…it isn’t because I have run out of things to say about God’s mercy in my life. It is because the flaming arrows simply have not stopped coming at me since my Walk to Emmaus in March. They warned us this would happen, but it appears that my professions of God’s tender mercies have earned some extra ammo aimed in my direction.
Dang, how I hate the distraction of flaming arrows. The Bible assures us we will face them as believers, but we can, should we choose, remain on the sidelines of battle. The less public we are with our faith, the more likely we are to be largely left alone. While everyone faces adversity in this life, the enemy of our souls delights in going after those who attempt to share the kindness and mercy of a loving God in a world desperate for hope.
Faith. That’s all we have. Ephesians 6:16 instructs us, “In all circumstances, take up the shield of faith, with which you can extinguish all (!!!) the flaming darts of the evil one;” (ESV). “ALL” is an amazing word. What a relief it is to know that God has already provided assurance that we have ALL we need as we undergo attack. Faith. Because he who is in us is greater than he who is in the world. Because our battle is not against flesh and blood. Because the battle for our souls was won on two wooden beams.
In Romans we are promised this: “The God of peace will soon crush Satan under your feet (16:20, ESV). As surely as we recognize the evil and darkness rampant in this world, we can identify the one who hates us, whose goal is to immobilize us or defeat us, if it were possible. Faith makes that impossible.
So while I’m here in this foxhole, let me tell you the wonderful mercies which God has bestowed. Our daughter Kelsey was undiagnosed with lupus six days ago. All traces of antinuclear antibodies and lupus-specific markers are GONE from her blood. She has been released from her rheumatology clinic after sixteen months of being a patient. This doesn’t happen. Our son Colson walked away from an automobile crash that totaled his vehicle. We have nearly lost count of how many times God has spared him from death, beginning at age three when he was miraculously saved from a near-drowning, a few years later being struck by lightning, and later taking a bus to school one day and one day only (the day I was t-boned by a Ford truck exactly where he should’ve been sitting), and numerous times fainting (the big one resulting in a severe concussion, the effects of which lasted nearly a year). Colson’s accident graciously did not happen while RJ and I were on our cruise (a sweet friend pointed out to me), but mere days after our return. I am posting from Virginia, where I’ve been given the incredible privilege of caring for our granddaughter while our oldest child, Kasey, works toward her bachelor’s degree–where Christian and Kelsey are also pursuing theirs and where Colson is attending in the fall.
God is good all the time.
Faith is easy with a God so incredibly good. What arrows???