Wherever we go and whatever we do here on earth as Christ followers, we can be certain that satan will use others to try to make our testimony for the Lord mute. It’s a spiritual battle. Your Uncle Joe may look like the enemy, but he isn’t. “For we do not wrestle against flesh and blood, but against principalities, against powers, against the rulers of the darkness of this age, against spiritual hosts of wickedness in the heavenly places.” (Eph 6:12)
Know that we are never meant to fight our battles alone because “God [is] with us” (Matt. 1:23). In 1 Samuel 13:16-22 we see that the Israelites were at a distinct disadvantage against the Philistines. They had no iron weapons and the Philistines had a monopoly on iron and blacksmithing. The Philistines had tight control over technology; that along with their surprise raids demoralized the Israelites and kept them in subjection.
But Jonathan knew the Lord. “Then Jonathan said to the young man who bore his armor, ‘Come, let us go over to the garrison of these uncircumcised; it may be that the Lord will work for us. For nothing restrains the Lord from saving by many or by few.'” (1 Sam 14:6) While everyone else was afraid, they trusted God, knowing that the size of the enemy wouldn’t restrict God’s ability to help them. God honored the faith and brave action of these two men with tremendous victory.
Many believe that to survive in this world (or at a family dinner table) a person must be tough, strong, unbending, and harsh. But God says “Not by might nor by power, but by My Spirit” (Zech 4:6). It is only through God’s Spirit that anything of lasting value is accomplished. We must determine to not to trust in our own strength or abilities; but instead depend on God and work in the power of His Spirit.
Rather than battle with harshness, we are told: “Peacemakers who sow in peace reap a harvest of righteousness.” (James 3:18) How do we sow peace in the midst of a battle? We give the burden to the Lord, and rest in Him. “Come to Me, all you who labor and are heavy laden, and I will give you rest.” (Matt. 11:28)
How do we give Him our burden? We take it to Him in prayer–that IS the battle! “With all prayer and petition pray at all times in the Spirit, and with this in view, be on the alert with all perseverance and petition for all the saints.” (Eph. 6:18)
Keep in mind the enemy wants you to believe that another person is where your battle looms. Thus he would have us fighting in our own strength, which would make our Lord look small to unbelievers. Jesus said there is no truth in the devil (John 8:44), but that Jesus Christ is “the way, and the truth, and the life; no one comes to the Father but through Me” (John 14:6).
We can choose to continue to fight the darkness in our own power and with worldly weapons, or we can step into battle with the Lord’s Spirit, by taking everything to Him in prayer, and leave the results to Him. Before you do your best, commit your effort to the Lord. He promises to accomplish His purpose through you. “Whatever you do, do your work heartily, as for the Lord rather than for men, knowing that from the Lord you will receive the reward of the inheritance. It is the Lord Christ whom you serve.” (Col. 3:23-24)