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August 1, 2021

Orthodox Bulgarian icon of St. George fighting the Dragon (1621 AD), Source Alciato’s Book of Emblems (PD-Art, PD-old-100)

It can, at times, seem as if this modern world of ours is hell-bent on driving us insane.

We are forced to grapple with government agencies, insurance carriers, banks, utilities, credit card companies, credit rating agencies, phone companies, computer companies, investment companies, and many more – often wrestling with the very technology which is supposed to assist us.

Corporate giants have taken the place of kings who once ruled with an iron fist.  Little wonder that we are left feeling frustrated and small.  Powerless, for all practical purposes.

The spiritual reality is, of course, that Satan, “the ruler of this world” (John 12: 31), is hellbound and determined to bring us along, or at least discourage, distract, and disable us.  Even the most sincere Christians can fall into his traps.  The daily struggle simply wears us down.

What then are we to do?  How ought we to respond?

There is, of course, the armor of God available to us:  the helmet of Salvation, the belt of truth, the breastplate of Christ’s righteousness, the sandals of the gospel of peace, the shield of faith, and the sword of the Spirit which is the Word of God (Eph. 6: 10-18) [1].

First and foremost, however, we must recognize that the battle is a spiritual one.

The challenges we face (whatever form they may take) are real.  But we are not alone in confronting them.  God is always present and always superior to our situation.  He remains sovereign.

This makes prayer a powerful weapon, readily at hand.  The feeling that we are powerless is actually deceptive.

Prayer changes our focus, returning it to God.  In so doing, it can not only change our circumstances, but our response to them.

Perhaps God is using the opportunity to teach us painful lessons in patience or humility.  Perhaps He is teaching us to cede control to Him (Isa. 55: 8-9).  That, too, can be difficult for us.

If we can adopt this attitude, we stand a much better chance of overcoming our frustration rather than succumbing to it.

My flesh and my heart may fail, but God is the strength of my heart and my portion forever” (Ps. 73: 26).

[1] Connect Us, “The 7 Pieces of the Armor of God and How to Use Them” by Natalie Regoli, 12/2/19,


  1. Anna,
    We can never hear these truths enough. As world politics and economic realities seem to spin out of our control, we need to speak them to ourselves. God is sovereign, and such spiritual realities make all the difference as we live in humility and patience before Him in communion.

    • Thank you for commenting, Dora. I fully agree. God remains in control, even when it feels to us He is not.

  2. You hit it square on Anna. We are quite powerless to change anything. Being God doesn’t enlist very well with our agenda wars, we need to cede control to him as well as join him in what he is doing and about to do with the proper attire. Then change happens God’s way at his time.

  3. Yes, Yes, Yes! The battle is real, and as you pointed out, it is spiritual…Eph 6:12  For we wrestle not against flesh and blood, but against principalities, against powers, against the rulers of the darkness of this world, against spiritual wickedness in high places. 

  4. Ah yes, prayer! And worship (the two go together, don’t they?), which lifts our eyes above our circumstances to focus on our reigning and returning Redeemer. Thanks Anna for these reminders.

  5. Encouraging words!

  6. I know all about “wrestling with the very technology which is supposed to assist us.” (I’m “technologically challenged.”) It seems that high tech or low tech, frustration is part of life, but you’re right, it helps us with humility and patience. (I’ve opined that “Murphy” is the name of an angel whose mission it is to keep us dependent on God. 😉 )

  7. What an astute description of life as we know it today!

  8. Allan Halton permalink

    Thank you, Anna, you said, “Prayer changes our focus, returning it to God. In so doing, it can not only change our circumstances, but our response to them.”

    Focus is so, so important, and as you said, we have an Adversary determined to distract us from our focus.

    Here’s a link to a short message by Lilias Trotter (1853-1928) called Focussed– A Story and a Song. It’s a message that Lilias Trotter received upon seeing a dandelion (of all things) full face to the sun.

    I have found this greatly inspiring.

    “Song” in the title is in reference to the song that Helen Lemmel (1863-1961) wrote upon reading Focussed. The chorus of Helen’s song came to her “spontaneously” just after reading Focussed, as Lilias’ pamphlet was first called. Lilias eventually became aware of the song, and revised Focussed slightly, and renamed it, adding A Story and a Song.

    Here also is the link to that song– Turn Your Eyes Upon Jesus.

    Help us, dear Jesus, half-wilted dandelions as we often are, to turn full-faced to you, and stay focused!

  9. We have more power available to us than anything that can or will come against us. Through the indwelling Holy Spirit, Jesus our intercessor, and our merciful Heavenly Father.

    I stumble more than I would like into the deceptive “feeling” of being powerless. But becoming quicker at prayer being the first thing.

  10. Amen, and thanks for reminding me I’m not alone in the fight. Blessings to you and yours.

Trackbacks & Pingbacks

  1. Frustration – Tonya LaLonde

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