Be rooted. Be guarded. Be disciplined. Battle.
Have you ever wondered how to actually go about battling something spiritually? We’ve all heard people talk about being in battle or having something they struggle with that they’re trying to overcome. A battle is more than a struggle. A battle is a strategy to be victorious over the enemy.
Know truth. If you don’t know truth from falsehood, you’re going to be fighting in a fog with no solid sense of direction. Read your bible.
Psalm 119:105 (NASB)
Be consuming the Word of God. How often are you reading your bible? Has it been a couple of weeks or even a couple of months? This is your spiritual nutrition. Are you well-nourished in your bible study?
Deuteronomy 6:6-9 (NASB)
Pray. How often are you talking to God? Daily? Only when you need something? Like any relationship, no communication isn’t much of a relationship. Are you spending time with the Lord? Are you listening? Do you have the Holy Spirit living inside of you? Can you find a moment? If you’re too busy to pray, you’re too busy. Reorder your priorities. Even if your prayer time in the morning is turning off your radio on your drive to work and using that time to talk to God, you can make time for Jesus. Have a routine if you need to. In the moment that you’re struggling, you need to step aside from everything and start praying.
Colossians 4:2 (NASB)
Attend and connect to a truth preaching church. Going to church is necessary for spiritual maintenance. It nourishes us. It grows us. It guides us. And we need the fellowship.
Hebrews 10:25 (KJV)
Have ministers in your life. We all need people to guide us and teach us and pour wisdom into us. You need to have a pastor you can talk to. You need to find preachers that speak truth and life to your spirit. You need people that can show you the way.
Ephesians 4:11-15 (NIV)
Be of sound mind. Your mindset determines what and how you think. What kind of thoughts rule your mind? Is it fear? It is worry? Anxiety? Depression? Despair? Or is it trust, faith, victory, praise?
2 Timothy 1:7 (KJV)
Train your mind to think on the things of God and speak faith. What are you focused on? It is natural to worry and fear and be negative. We have to train ourselves to think with faith. We have to redirect our thoughts to be focused on the things of God. Speaking faith is a habit that must be practiced.
Philippians 4:8 (KJV)
Listen to testimonies. Know what God can do. Sometimes we overcome battles because we know if he did it for them he can do it for us too. If you have a testimony, share it because somebody out there needs it.
Revelation 12:11 (NASB)
We need fellowship. Our friendships in the church and with our brothers and sisters in Christ can hold us afloat when we are struggling.
Acts 2:42 (LSB)
Know that the devil is prowling around like a predator looking for who he can devour. You are not exempt from temptation. Know that these temptations will come and we have a way to overcome.
1 Peter 5:8-9 (NIV)
Know what is sin. It is important that you’re paying attention when the bible calls something a sin and it is important that you choose a church that isn’t afraid to preach what is right and what is wrong.
2 Timothy 2:19 (NIV)
Also know your own weaknesses. We all have things that are a problem area for us. Be especially guarded against your own weaknesses. Use the scriptures on that topic as tools to keep your mind on the right track. Write down the verses that help you resist the temptation and stay strong in your conviction.
Psalm 119:133 (NIV)
Know what pulls you away. Addictions of all kinds are spiritually destructive. Idols pull you away from God. Maybe it’s simply being too tired to go to church. Maybe it’s a hurt. We each have our things that we know pull us away from God. What is that for you?
1 Corinthians 10:13 (NIV)
Know what is righteousness. Are you striving to live like Jesus? Are you striving to live in a holy manner?
Romans 6:11-23 (NIV)
Watch where you step. Don’t tempt yourself. Guard your thoughts against the temptations of the flesh. Stay away from the things of darkness.
Romans 13:12-14 (NASB)
Be diligent in filtering your entertainment. What you feed your mind with is powerful. Be very careful with the entertainment you consume. The media industry is highly influential over thoughts and lifestyles. Social media can be great, but it can also be unhealthy. If it’s a sin to do, it’s a sin to entertain yourself with it. Turn off that television. Go through what you subscribe to on social media. What are you feeding your mind with what you view?
2 Peter 1:3-6 (KJV)
Guard your heart. Be diligent in guarding what your heart desires after.
Proverbs 4:23 (NET)
Be connected to believers that will cover you in prayer. It is a powerful thing when brothers and sisters in Christ lift each other up in prayer. We can battle for each other too in intercessory prayer. A friend that prays for you is a good friend.
Galatians 6:1-2 (NIV)
Put on the full armor of God. This allows us to stand against the attacks of the enemy.
Ephesians 6:10-18 (NASB)
Resist sin. You can’t overcome sin if you invite it in. Self-discipline is a big part of walking the narrow path. Refuse to indulge in what is destructive to your soul.
1 Thessalonians 5:22-24 (NIV)
Take every thought captive to the obedience of Christ. Do not let your mind linger in temptation. Thoughts become actions. You can’t stop a bird from flying over your head, but you can stop it from building a nest in your hair. You don’t have to linger in thoughts of temptation. Learn how to discipline your thoughts.
2 Corinthians 10:5 (NASB)
Repent regularly. Repentance is a necessary cleansing. None of us are perfect. If you refuse to let go of and turn from what you are battling to overcome, it will consume you.
1 John 1:8-10 (NIV)
Surrender the sinful desires of the flesh at the foot of the cross. Lay it down. If you’re hanging onto something that’s destroying your spirit, you’re going to stay in that battle because you’re gripping the poison that slays you.
1 Peter 1:14-16 (NASB)
Have your mind made up to live for the Lord. That means denying the sinful desires of the flesh. That means sacrificing what is pleasurable for a season if it’s harmful to you spiritually. That means boundaries and keeping yourself on the track of righteousness.
Romans 8:5-9 (NASB)
Surround yourself with people who keep you on the path of living for Jesus. Go to church. Fellowship with other believers. Iron sharpens iron. Be a student. Be a mentor. Be at the prayer meetings. If you have people you’ve been spending time with or talking to that are negatively impacting you spiritually, consider pruning your social circle if you need to. And if you’re tempted to fill your time with sin that decays, instead spend that time serving others and plant seeds to grow the kingdom.
1 Peter 2:9 (NIV)
Be steadfast in your firm foundation. Stay rooted. We plant our feet on solid ground. Our faith should not be unsteady or easily swayed. We need to be firm in the foundation of our faith.
Matthew 7:24-27 (NIV)
Remember you are called to be set apart. We are God’s holy people. We are called to live holy. Discipline yourself to maintain your separateness from the world of sin.
2 Corinthians 6:17 (NASB)
Live a lifestyle of holiness. We are called to live holy.
Leviticus 20:26 (WEB)
Train/exercise yourself for godliness. The more you exercise the more strength you build up. Train for this lifestyle.
1 Timothy 4:7-8 (ASV)
Worship consistently. The more we worship the more we fix our eyes on truth and righteousness. We drown out the sound of the enemy when we lift our voices to worship Jesus. Worship breaks chains. Worship overcomes. Worship leads to victory. Worship God and he will move in your situation.
Acts 16:25-26 (ASV)
Fast. Fasting is not optional. It is expected. It is needed.
Matthew 17:21 (KJV)
Abstain from distractions and dedicate time for God. We get so busy. We get distracted every few minutes from whatever we’re trying to do. We have our cell phones in our hand and a to-do list a mile long. Even when we intend to do bible study or have prayer time or look into that topic that’s been weighing on our mind, we get distracted. We need to be intentional with making time for God. Block off time for your spiritual wellbeing.
Luke 21:34 (NASB)
Submit yourself to God. We yield to God’s will. Not our will, but his.
James 4:7 (KJV)
What are we supposed to do when the fire gets hot? When it really feels like the enemy is winning, the devil is holding you in bondage, your mind is tormented, sin decays you, temptation consumes you, the fiery darts are coming against you… how do we actually go about battling?
Here are some things that I have learned to do, and I see it make a difference.
Address your sin and repent of it. If you’re not repenting, don’t expect the Lord to fix your problems. You’re hanging on to sin and it’s going to keep destroying you.
Surrender your sinful desires. You need to be willing to lay it down. What do you want to follow after? You can’t follow Jesus and sin at the same time.
Pray on it, over it, and through it. You should be praying about it often. What are you battling? Are you talking to God about it?
Examine any areas that are welcoming in sin, temptation, or the attacks of the enemy. Let’s say you find yourself thinking lustfully when you usually don’t have that problem. What has changed? Are you watching something on television or the internet that is leading your mind that way? Are you listening to music that has your mind fixated on that? Look at your entertainment. Look at what influences you. It could be a good friend who is genuinely a good person but doesn’t share your faith values.
Do a maintenance check on your spiritual well-being. How’s your walk with the Lord going? How is your prayer life? How is your bible study time? How is church going? Are you going? Are you regularly attending a good church? What are your strong points? What are your weak areas?
Worship your way through the battle. This makes more of a difference than you may realize. Keep living for God. Show up to church. Actually sing. Worship during the service. Worship at home. Listen to worship music often. Go up to the altar. Stay dedicated. Cry out to Him.
Read your bible more. The more you struggle spiritually, the more you should open your bible. Are you reading daily? If you’re not consuming the word of God, you make an easy target for the enemy to lure you away or mess with your mind. Set a routine to have time in the bible. Follow a schedule. I’ve done a schedule to read the New Testament in 40 days a few times when I feel like I’m in a spiritual desert. It always makes a difference. Take time to nourish your spirit with bible study.
Go to church more. We have a tendency to not want to go to church when we are struggling. That may be because of judgment. It may be because we are overwhelmed. It may be depression or anxiety. We need to push through and show up anyway.
Go to prayer meetings more. If you’re struggling, try going to a prayer meeting.
Praise God. Your words make a difference. Your mindset is half the battle. Refuse to speak against God. Refuse to say that God isn’t going to help you or isn’t going to fix the problem in time. Get up and praise Him. Thank him for what he’s doing even when you can’t see it. Give him the glory. Speak faith. Speak victory. We may not always feel excited or optimistic, but faith is not based in feelings. Praise his name.
Know your authority in the name of Jesus. There is power in the name of Jesus. We do have authority spiritually. Tear down strongholds in the name of Jesus.
Rebuke spirits and the attacks of the enemy. If you haven’t learned how to rebuke things, you’re going to suffer with things you can cast off. Rebuke that spirit of depression. Rebuke that sickness. Rebuke that attack.
Have Spirit-filled people pray with you. Oftentimes, we isolate when we struggle. We don’t want to tell people who will gossip or look down on us for struggling. We don’t want to admit we aren’t always walking on the mountaintop. Find a few friends who will pray with you.
Carry on. You need to be determined to carry on in the faith no matter what. Keep living for Jesus no matter what. Keep walking the walk no matter what. Even if the prayer requests don’t get answered…. Even if you/they aren’t healed… Even if destruction comes…. Even if everything falls apart… Even if you don’t have the gas money to get to church… Even if you suffer… carry on.