Devotion: Choose Your Battles Wisely, Illness Frustrations Can Lead To Quick Choices We Regret
Posted Feb 29 2012 10:00am
“As the Philistine moved closer to attack him, David ran quickly toward the battle line to meet him.” (1 Samuel 17:48)
Recently there was a news article about a church that the police had visited on two occasions. It seems that about fifty of the church members were at war with the pastor of the church. The whole thing got so out of control the police were called in to stop the dispute. I would suggest that battle should not have been fought. Someone should have just walked away.
The collateral damage to the name of Christ proves that was not a worthwhile battle, for no matter who ultimately “won,” they all lost.
In a similar fashion those with afflictions and chronic illnesses must choose their battles wisely, not because of giving a bad testimony, but because we cannot afford the cost of some battles. We have limited strength and cannot afford to waste it in unnecessary fights. We must save our strength for the true, worthwhile battles of life.
There are things I know to stay clear of, things that can easily, and needlessly sap my strength and resources. There are negative areas that it would be unwise for me to stray into. There are foolish arguments I must avoid, and needless fights I must stay out of, because there are other times and places where I will need my strength. And it is the same for anyone weighed down by affliction.
There are things worth fighting for, conflicts that cannot be avoided, and places where we must spend what precious strength we have. Affliction demands much of us, yet we live in the world and have a part to play in life. The important thing is for us to play the part God has given us wisely, calling upon Him for wisdom and help.
I believe God gives us strength to stand up for purposes that please Him, but woe to the Christian who wastes the resources God gives upon foolish disputes and needless contention.
We are all guilty of stepping into places, situations, fights we ought to have avoided. The cost is dear to the soul who is already fighting the battle of affliction. It would be like one nation declaring war on another nation with an army so puny they could hardly mount an attack. We must appear just as foolish to the Lord when we throw our little strength into huge conflicts we cannot win against.
There is a simple quote that I like:
“Be always sure you are right –then go ahead.” –Davy Crockett
But keep in mind that we need to be sure we are right. Often we think we are right only to look back and realize we were wrong. When we have both peace and conviction for the battles facing us we can know we are right. I think God would have us act on faith rather than fear, love rather than hate, and wisdom rather than foolishness.
Consider the battles you face, of whatever sort they are, and ask the Lord to give you wisdom, and strength for the battles you must fight, and the courage and wisdom to walk away from those you must avoid.
Prayer: Dear Lord, forgive us for the times we have not chosen our battles wisely, and give us strength for the battles we all must fight. Amen.
About the Author
Karlton Douglas lives in Ohio with his lovely wife. His desire is to fight and win his battle with afflictions, and to otherwise avoid