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I would like to take a look at Psalm 144:1-4:

"Praise be to the Lord my rock, who trains my hands for war, my fingers for battle. He is my loving God & my fortress, my stronghold & deliverer, my shield, in whom I take refuge, who subdues people under me. Oh Lord, what is man that you care for him, the son of man that You think of him? Man is like a breath; his days are like a fleeting shadow." (NIV)

These verses initially sruck me as a little bit odd.

We always talk about our God being a God of love, but look at all the war images in these verses: war, battle. shield? I know that to most non-Believers, this would seem very contridictory. But as we see all through the Old Testament, this is very much what God does for those that He calls his own.

So how do these verses apply to us today? Certainly, the Lord is not telling us to go out & wage war? Or is He?

We are all living with the constant barrage of stories about what is happening all over the world, & especially today, with out troops stationed in Iraq, & elsewhere in the world.

I believe that to those of us who claim the name of Christ, this is talking about spiritual warfare instead.

I think that most of us are familiar with Ephesians 6:12-"For our struggle is not against flesh & blood, but against the rulers, against the authorities, against the powers of the dark world, & against the spiritual forces of evil in the heavenly realm." (NIV)

For those of us who can remember far enough back to the Vietman Era, (especially us guys), we remember that there was something that was called the draft. For those chosen by the draft, (thankfully, I wasn't one of those! ), we had two choices: either report for duty, & obey the law, or else, become a law-breaker, & not report.

As Believers however, we are NOT given a choice to become involved in this spiritual war. Some may say that we DO have a choice whether or not to become involved in this spiritual war, but I ask-"Do we really?"

We all have our battles with those forces of evil, throughout our lifetimes, such as depression, a physical illness, or any other number of things. So what do we want to do about it? We can either choose to confront these problems, through the power of the Holy Spirit, or we can do nothing at all.

And what are the consequences of not doing anything? Take a look at some of the testimonies that are here on this site. Look at the results of ignoring what Satan throws against us. Look at what happened in my own life, until just a few weeks ago!

Non-involvment, (or what we can call "spiritual apathy"), is the worst possible thing that we do! When we don't become involved in the spiritual warfare that, (once we become Believers, by receiving Jesus as our Lord & Savior, & being washed clean by the power of His blood), our whole world crashes in on us!

I am not putting thae blame on any of us, when, it almost looked like, PWAB would cease to exist, but I think that many of us were guilty, (& I most certainly include myself here! ), of a degree of "spiritual apathy", & that is what almost caused our downfall! It was "spiritual apathy" that lead me away from our Lord, during the time that Carl Harris was at our church, because I was only looking at my own selfish desires, instead of reaching out to all the people who DID come to those meetings! I probably wouldn't HAVE fallen away, if I HAD been at those meetings, & I regret not HAVING been to them!

WE DON'T HAVE A CHOICE in spiritual warfare, my Brothers & Sisters! The instant that we are born-again, the dark forces of Satan start attacking us!

Look at the parable of the sower & the seeds in Matthew 13:3-8! Jesus seems to be impllying that there is not a great deal of time, before the seeds that fell among the thorns, that fell by the wayside, or that weren't planted deep enough. And THAT is what spiritual warfare IS all about!

Satan attacks us the very INSTANT that we choose Jesus! We need the whole armor of God, as talked about in Ephesians 6:10-18. We need the shield talked about in these verses that are from Psalm 144:1-4!

Why? Because of what we find in verses 3 & 4 here! Do these seem familiar? They should be, espicially since I kept referring time & time again to them , when the Lord lead me to do that study on Psalm 119, some time ago! Take a look at Psalm 8:3-4!

Finally; look at the last half of verse 4 in this Psalm.

We see the absolute truth of our very existance here are on this earth. A breath, or a shadow, really doesn't last too long, does it?

Since my fellowship was restored with the Lord, I have this absolute desire to be the kind of witness for him, like I was before! I have seen what happens when I have suffered fronm "spiritual apathy!"

How many people COULD I have witnessed to during the time Carl was at our church? How many times COULD I have been a witness at the places that I am currentlty working at? How many people MIGHT be going to Hell, because I wasn't trusting my Lord & Savior?

There is so little time left to us, my beloved Brothers & Sisters In Christ. Are we just going to sit by, enjoying the security of our own salvation, or are we going to be the kind of witnesses that Jesus commanded us to be in Acts 1:7-8? I know for myself, that I have a "whale" of a lot of catching up to do! I want so bad to serve my Lord & Savior, Jesus Christ, that I have cried every night for the past week, because of the desire that I have to become the major witness that I once was!

What do all of YOU want do do, with the all too brief time that YOU have left?

Let us pray.

"Lord Jesus, our hearts cry out in pain, because we have not even begun to engage in the warfare that we ARE all involved in, whether we like it or not! Our hearts are breaking for all those that might have chosen you, but never heard Your message, because we were too, apathetic to do anything. Lord Jesus, we humble ourselves right now, repenting of our apathy, & asking for forgivness for all those, who didn't hear Your word, because we didn't tell them! Lord Jesus, time is is very short! We see in the world today, more & more, the very signs that You said would accompany Your return. We fall on our faces, & cry out for the power of the Holy Spirit, to energize us like never before, so that we WOULD be the witnesse that You & You alone have Commanded us to be! Lord Jesus, it is the cry of the heart of each one of us who knows You, to be the FAITHFUL witnesses that You have chosen each one of us to be! Use us, Lord Jesus! Use us now, before it really IS too late! We ask this in Your Name, & Your Name alone, Lord Jesus!

In Jesus Name!
"If my people, who are called by My name, will humble themselves & pray, & seek my face, & turn from their wicked ways, then will I hear from Heaven, & will forgive their sin, & will heal their land." (II Chronicles 7:14) (NIV)