As I mentioned in my post about the attack on the Sutherland Springs Baptist church (link) there is evil in this word. In fact, as it states in Ephesians, our struggles are not truly against earthly things or people. They are actually against the forces of darkness in this world and in the spiritual realm. We need to protect ourselves from those evil forces as Paul wrote “by putting on the full armor of God.” I also believe we need to take physical measures to protect ourselves, our loved ones and our brothers and sisters in Christ. Having an aggressive nature I also think we should attack the forces of darkness wherever we can, not just defend against them.
I was moved to take that stand and make that statement without really knowing exactly how that should all work. As I stated before, I do know that it doesn’t mean physically attacking those who hold different views than we do.
Today, I saw a glimpse of how to take the offensive.
I was in the Houston Medical Center waiting to pay for parking when I noticed an elderly man wearing a hat showing the unit her served in during Vietnam. Based on our location in the MedCenter and a few other indicators, he is probably battling cancer. I wanted to thank him for his service but he was focused on figuring out how to use the automated system to pay for his parking (I struggle with those kiosks as well) and I didn’t want to interrupt and distract him.
That’s when it hit me that this was an opportunity to “be the light” and push back against the forces of darkness. Instead of waiting for him to be finished I interrupted and paid for his parking while thanking him for his service.
It was a small thing. Not worth mentioning and I am definitely not mentioning for any sort of recognition but it does point the way to how we can shine the light into this world and drive darkness. Every single action we take that reflects God’s love displaces the darkness. Every tiny victory in the battle against the darkness counts because major victories are nothing more than a whole lot of tiny battles won.
I don’t think this is the complete answer on how to take the offensive against darkness and evil. There is more to it than a simple bit of “paying it forward” in a parking garage but it is a part of it. It points to the ultimate direction.
In the meantime, I will continue to look for every opportunity to “be the light.” Every kind word, every expression of thanks and compassion is a tiny win against the darkness.