Warrior – what comes to mind when you hear that word? There are so many definitions for warrior but if you truly think about it, we are ALL warriors. We all have some kind of battle or struggle or conflict that we are facing, whether big or small. Plus there are so many battles to fight – spiritual, physical, mental or emotional. And they pop up in the midst of our daily lives, at any point in time. So what do YOU do when you are faced with a battle? Do you let it knock you down and you stay there? Or do you get up, dust yourself off and fight through it?
Looking back on my life, there have been so many struggles that I have battled through. I never thought of myself as a warrior but I’ve realized that I have indeed gotten up, dusted myself off and fought through every struggle in the best way that I could. My last struggle was truly a test of whether I would be able to dust myself off and not stay knocked down. It was discovered that a 2 cm growth was on my left kidney. For two months I went through a kidney biopsy, CT scans, all the blood work that needed to be done to determine whether it was cancerous. After getting the news that it was indeed cancerous, I felt my world shrink around me. That dreaded, unmentionable c-word could not be applied to me. A word that rises up so much angst and emotion – and immediate thoughts of death. Because we all know someone or know of someone who has died from it, who is struggling with it right now, and maybe someone who has even survived it the first time only to have it come back again. Hearing news like this, it would only be reasonable for someone to stay knocked down. It becomes a choice of whether you will indeed get up and fight. Once you make that choice, how you face your struggle is different for everyone. For me, I discovered that my faith in God has grown stronger from this struggle. His comfort and peace surrounded me as I began this battle. And He didn’t disappoint me. I felt such a calmness and peace and the knowing that it would all be ok. That knowing that all would be ok – have you ever felt that? It was different than hoping for me; it was actually more freeing because I just knew. And God gave that to me. He made me so confident in the fact that I could be fully present in all that I did to prepare, in how I told others about it, in how I acted. I acted not with fear, but with joy that my Father had this. That He was going to be right beside me in the fight. That the joy of the Lord was my strength. My bible verse was Mark 5:34 – “Daughter your faith has healed you. Go in peace and suffer no more”. I spoke that every day as well. We need to speak the Word and speak out against whatever the enemy is trying to make us feel – doubtful, anxious, worried, afraid, depressed, angry. We need to find the joy in our trials – James 1:2-3 “When troubles of any kind come your way, consider it an opportunity for great joy. For you know when your faith is tested, your endurance has a chance to grow.” I did know this verse but it didn’t resonate with me as it did now. My outlook during the months preceding my surgery were filled with so much joy – in the moment, in everything I did, in my prayers and declarations that God was healing me. God’s plan all along – to strengthen my faith in Him as He rejoices with me. When you need to get your relationship solid with God, you need to be in it; you need to do your part. You cannot expect that God will just make it happen. You need to take action and trust Him in all that will happen. After all, faith is a key component of being a warrior. All those battles along the way prepared me for what He had in store for me now. For if I didn’t go through them, I would never have grown to be in the place where He needed me to be to fight in this last battle. God has shown me that when we go through our battles, we need to be armed and ready with the Word, with our hearts joyful, and with a renewing of our mind that is set on Jesus. Remember Warrior – the battle belongs to the Lord; you will see a victory!