Fuller

The Act of Balancing Opposition Pt. 1

December 7, 2019 • Life for Leaders

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.

Ephesians 6:12 (NKJV)

 

Without scientific observation, we can conclude that our creator loves opposites and duality. Some of the most popular demonstrations of God’s love for binaries include the existence of man and woman, the sun and the moon, and the directions of up or down. We can also conclude that God does not create in isolation. The portfolio of God is very diverse, and its nature is atmospheric and embedded with context about unity, harmony, and connection.

A white line on a black background which turns into a yellow line on a white backgroundThe most powerful being in the universe, our God, loves compliments, attraction, and relationship. In my adult life, I have become obsessed with understanding God’s purpose for duality. In my pursuit to be a woman after God’s own heart, I desire the capacity to balance my thoughts, feelings, actions, and contributions with those that I perceive exist in contrast to my intentions and my being-ness. This brings me to the heartbroken realization that wickedness, or rather opposition, does exist in heavenly places, or shall we say ideal spaces.

For the purpose of this devotional, we can define wickedness as that which is in opposition of another’s pursuit of greatness—however they should define greatness for themselves. I ascribe my definition of greatness to the characteristics and intentions of God outlined in scripture. Several texts express biblically defined greatness, but one of my favorite texts on the subject is Galatians 5:22-23.

For practical application, I’d like to introduce the euphemism, “Can I be great?”  It is a colloquial statement expressed when someone perceives that another person is impeding upon their desires to do well in whatever capacity that may be.  For me personally, this would be an awareness that someone or something or someplace is impeding upon my joy, peace, and pursuit of excellence.

The immature me would immediately try to avoid this person, place, or thing. A less immature version of me would pause my own agenda to gain a direct understanding via analysis and/or interrogation of the person, place, or thing. But the me that is pressing toward the mark for the prize of the high calling of God in Christ Jesus goes into my prayer closest and seeks God for patience, wisdom, and understanding.

Do you think the sun asks the moon, “Can I be great?”

Do you think the direction of up asks gravity, “Can I be great?”

Do you think God asks the devil, “Can I be great?”

I would presume that the answer to all three of these questions is No. Which leads me to wonder with such monumental examples of unity, harmony, and connection on display for all the world to see, how can we, as children of God, better manage the act of balancing opposition?

In tomorrow’s devotional, I will discuss more practical steps towards suspending the impact of opposition.

Something to Think About:

When was the last time you experienced opposition to your goals?

What was the outcome? Did you overcome the opposition by engaging in a unifying manner or by disengaging? Or did you not overcome and forego your original mission or intention?

Something to Do:

Make a list of seven goals you have for 2020. Then make a list of all the people, places, and things in your life you perceive to be obstacles in your way of achieving those goals. After you complete the list, ask God to help you see deeper meaning and purpose and strategies for success that will harmonize your goals and your opposition.

Prayer:

God, your Word states the truth about your ways versus our ways and your thoughts compared to our thoughts. Help us to see your grand design and intention in all things so that we may never lose sight of your purpose and goodness for us in the face of opposition.

In Jesus’ name we pray. Amen.

Explore more at the Theology of Work Project online
commentary:
Does Trusting God Mean Turning to Prayer, Taking “Practical” Action, or Both? (Nehemiah 1:11-4:23)

Tags