What to Read When…

Ephesians 6:10-18* always conjures up scenes from The Lord of The Rings of warriors sharpening swords, fitting armor, and saddling steeds to prepare for battle. I have come to realize the importance of daily battle preparation in my own life. Without preparation, I can get caught off my guard when unexpectedly faced with conflict, fear, decisions, temptation, hardship, and getting along with others. I have found the best way to prepare for these battles is to have a working knowledge of God’s plan of action–A.K.A the Bible.  I’d like to share some of these verses in hopes that they may help you when your battles come.

Loving others.

It’s not always easy to love friends and family. These verses have helped me to put perspective on why I should love others and how I can love when there’s no incentive or reciprocation.

  • Romans 12:9 Don’t just pretend to love others. Really love them. Hate what is wrong. Hold tightly to what is good. 
  • Joshua 22:2-3 You have obeyed me in everything I have commanded. For a long time now-to this very day-you have not deserted your brothers but have carried on he mission the Lord your God gave you.
  • 1 Corinthians 13:1-8 If I could speak all the languages of earth and of angels, but didn’t love others, I would only be a noisy gong or a clanging cymbal. If I had the gift of prophecy, and if I understood all of God’s secret plans and possessed all knowledge, and if I had such faith that I could move mountains, but didn’t love others, I would be nothing. If I gave everything I have to the poor and even sacrificed my body, I could boast about it; but if I didn’t love others, I would have gained nothing. Love is patient and kind. Love is not jealous or boastful or proud or rude. It does not demand its own way. It is not irritable, and it keeps no record of being wronged. It does not rejoice about injustice but rejoices whenever the truth wins out. Love never gives up, never loses faith, is always hopeful, and endures through every circumstance. Prophecy and speaking in unknown languages and special knowledge will become useless. But love will last forever!

Spiritual Battles

So often I’m going through something really tough like relational conflict or a bad day and I want to blame someone or lash out in anger. After seeing War Room, I have come to rely on verses that remind me to go for the root of my anger, frustration, and conflict: Satan.

  • Ephesians 6:12 For we are not fighting against flesh-and-blood enemies, but against evil rulers and authorities of the unseen world, against mighty powers in this dark world, and against evil spirits in the heavenly places.
  • Romans 8:37 No, despite all these things, overwhelming victory is ours through Christ, who loved us.
  • 1 John 4:4 But you belong to God, my dear children. You have already won a victory over those people, because the Spirit who lives in you is greater than the spirit who lives in the world.
  • 1 Peter 5:8-9 Stay alert! Watch out for your great enemy, the devil. He prowls around like a roaring lion, looking for someone to devour. Stand firm against him, and be strong in your faith. Remember that your family of believers all over the world is going through the same kind of suffering you are.
  • 1 John 5:4-5 For every child of God defeats this evil world, and we achieve this victory through our faith. And who can win this battle against the world? Only those who believe that Jesus is the Son of God.

Hardship

Jesus told his close friends, “I have told you all this so that you may have peace in me. Here on earth you will have many trials and sorrows. But take heart, because I have over come the world” (John 16:33). These verses help me to rely on Jesus, being confident that He has a purpose for the battles of sorrow and hardship.

  • Romans 5:3 We can rejoice, too, when we run into problems and trials, for we know that they help us develop endurance.
  • James 1:2-4 Dear brothers and sisters, when troubles of any kind come your way, consider it an opportunity for great joy. For you know that when your faith is tested, your endurance has a chance to grow. So let it grow, for when your endurance is fully developed, you will be perfect and complete, needing nothing.
  • 2 Corinthians 1:3 All praise to God, the Father of our Lord Jesus Christ. God is our merciful Father and the source of all comfort.
  • Romans 12:12 Rejoice in our confident hope. Be patient in trouble, and keep on praying.

Temptation and Testing

When I am tempted to do something that I know is wrong, I can always turn to these, my go-to verses.

  • 1Peter 2:11 Dear friends, I warn you as “temporary residents and foreigners” to keep away from worldly desires that wage war against your very souls.
  • Job 23:10-11 But he knows where I am going. And when he tests me, I will come out as pure as gold. For I have stayed on God’s paths; I have followed his ways and not turned aside.
  • 1 Corinthians 10:13 The temptations in your life are no different from what others experience. And God is faithful. He will not allow the temptation to be more than you can stand. When you are tempted, he will show you a way out so that you can endure.

Forgiveness

Paul’s words help me to put forgiveness in perspective. Paul is explicit about forgiving others because forgiveness is central to Christianity. Without God’s forgiveness, there would be no salvation. To refuse to forgive someone else is to disavow Jesus’s forgiveness that brought salvation.  

  • Colossians 3:12-15 Since God chose you to be the holy people he loves, you must clothe yourselves with tenderhearted mercy, kindness, humility, gentleness, and patience. Make allowance for each other’s faults, and forgive anyone who offends you. Remember, the Lord forgave you, so you must forgive others. Above all, clothe yourselves with love, which binds us all together in perfect harmony. And let the peace that comes from Christ rule in your hearts. For as members of one body you are called to live in peace. And always be thankful.
  • 2 Corinthians 2:5-11 I am not overstating it when I say that the man who caused all the trouble hurt all of you more than he hurt me. Most of you opposed him, and that was punishment enough. Now, however, it is time to forgive and comfort him. Otherwise he may be overcome by discouragement. So I urge you now to reaffirm your love for him. I wrote to you as I did to test you and see if you would fully comply with my instructions. When you forgive this man, I forgive him, too. And when I forgive whatever needs to be forgiven, I do so with Christ’s authority for your benefit, so that Satan will not outsmart us. For we are familiar with his evil schemes.

Getting along 

Getting along is easier said than done. These verses remind me to rely on Jesus to get along with love, gentleness, and patience.

  • Ephesians 4:2 Always be humble and gentle. Be patient with each other, making allowance for each other’s faults because of your love.
  • Romans 12:10 Love each other with genuine affection, and take delight in honoring each other.
  • Hebrews 10:24 Let us think of ways to motivate one another to acts of love and good works.

Fear 

When I am afraid, these are my go-to verses.

  • Isaiah 26:3 You will keep in perfect peace all who trust in you, all whose thoughts are fixed on you!
  • 1 John 4:18 Such love has no fear, because perfect love expels all fear. If we are afraid, it is for fear of punishment, and this shows that we have not fully experienced his perfect love.

Decisions

When I don’t know the answer and am faced with indecision, I can go to The One who has the answer.

  • Jeremiah 6:16 This is what the Lord says: “Stop at the crossroads and look around. Ask for the old, godly way, and walk in it. Travel its path, and you will find rest for your souls. But you reply, ‘No, that’s not the road we want!’
  • Matthew 7:8 For everyone who asks, receives. Everyone who seeks, finds. And to everyone who knocks, the door will be opened.
  • Psalm 105:4 Search for the Lord and for his strength; continually seek him.
  • James 1:5 If you need wisdom, ask our generous God, and he will give it to you. He will not rebuke you for asking.
  • Job 12:13 But true wisdom and power are found in God; counsel and understanding are his
  • Proverbs 2:6 For the Lord grants wisdom! From his mouth come knowledge and understanding.
  • James 3:17 But the wisdom from above is first of all pure. It is also peace-loving, gentle at all times, and willing to yield to others. It is full of mercy and the fruit of good deeds. It shows no favoritism and is always sincere.
  • Proverbs 3:5-6 Trust in the Lord with all your heart; do not depend on your own understanding. Seek his will in all you do, and he will show you which path to take.

Feel free to download these verses for future battles!


FYI-all scripture references are from the NLT.
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