Battlefields and Supply Lines

I live in the midst of many civil war battlefields. When I stop to read historical markers along the hiking trails, they describe what occurred in each location telling how many lives were lost from each side and which side was victorious. From what I observed, time after time the Confederacy seemed to come out victorious in the battles, yet the Union won the war. How could that happen?

I asked my husband, my resident historian, what occurred to allow loss after loss to result in eventual victory. While I thought it was endurance, continuing to fight and not turning back, Mike, also my resident logistician, believed a major contributing factor was the that the supply chains of the South had broken down while the North was able to restore their interrupted supply chains to provide the soldiers with needed supplies to include food and weapons.  

I began pondering what spiritual parallels can be drawn. I know the end of the story – OUR LORD IS VICTORIOUS, but some months, it seems like battle after battle is lost.

Overcoming is a result of enduring. We are on the winning side of the King of Kings, the Lord of Heavenly Armies so the enemy can only attempt to convince us we are defeated and without hope.

What are our supply chains? Time alone with the Lord and in His word, continual communion with our Commander through prayer, and fellowship with other believers. We employ the Word of God as our sword.

I keep reminding myself not to feel defeated if the battle of the days seems to be turning in the enemy’s favor.

I am strong in the Lord and in the strength of His might and I will continue to take up the full armor of God so that I will be able to resist in the evil day and having done this, I will stand firm (Ephesians 6:10-13).

 I am fighting the good fight and keeping the faith (1 Timothy 1:19).

 I am pressing on so that I may lay hold of that for Christ has already laid hold of, forgetting what is behind and reaching to what lies ahead (Philippians 1:12-14).

Thanks be to God who gives us the victory through our Lord Jesus Christ (1 Corinthians 15:58).

Ordinary Days

Ordinary time consists of the calendar days in some Christian traditions which are not part of the Advent and Christmas season nor part of the celebration of the Lord’s Resurrection and the Lenten period preceding it. The majority of our days are lived in ordinary time.

So why when I am living an ordinary day does something not feel right? I think it is because I have been conditioned (by the world and maybe to some extent the church) to believe ordinary is not enough.

In my hopes to get to the root of this taunt the enemy continues to whisper, “Your life is so ordinary!” I decided to look into the etymology of word ordinary.

While today it the word seems to primarily mean mundane and without any special qualities, in Latin the word ordinalis refers to regular order or rule. The very similar word ordinare, translated ordain, means to put in order while ordinatio, ordination, signifies to set apart for certain duties or to consecrate.

Piecing together these word origins and the truth in God’s word, “We are God’s workmanship created in Christ Jesus for good works which God prepared beforehand so that we should walk in them.” (Ephesians 2:10), ordinary seems less like a judgment of “not enough” and seems to more accurately describe being faithful in a routine.

While my days are often ordinary (have a certain order and structure), they are set apart and consecrated by God for the good tasks which He has ordained for me.  As Brother Lawrence wrote about in The Practice of the Presence of God, the Lord is here in my midst in the ordinary moments of dishwashing and potato peeling. However, there is absolutely nothing ordinary about being invited into the presence of the Lord Almighty!