I face opposition and my immediate response is to back off or stop whatever it is that I’m doing. I don’t want to have to deal with this attack on me, so I turn tail and run. I wish I could give you one such opposition example, but too many come to mind. Suffice it to say, when I went to church this weekend with my mom (happy belated Mother’s Day to the mothers out there!), and there was talk of character, intention and integrity, the pastor had my attention. We were talking about what a man Nehemiah was back in the Old Testament, when these words were issued from the stage, “When we meet opposition, it’s against God, not us,” and a door opened for me. The opposition I face, the attacks on me, however slight, are not against me (that is, attacks in times when I am not actively rebelling against God’s love).
Why do we face opposition?
If you don’t believe there is good and evil in this world, I don’t know what to tell you, but there is. Furthermore, (spoiler alert) good will win. However, in the meantime, evil is a sore loser and tries to bring us down. Simply put, evil poses opposition to those trying to follow in the footsteps of good and God allows it sometimes. Before we go thinking God is sadistic, we need this opposition as it causes us to draw nearer to Him, rely more heavily on Him and see just how good and loving He really is. We need the darkness of opposition to show us just how bright a light God is.
How is opposition not against us?
Maybe it’s different for you, but my propensity to do evil is greater than I can stifle many days. I’m imperfect, therefore I will do things of which I’m ashamed and pretty much on a daily basis. The force of evil in this world is greater than me, for you it might be different. As such, I cannot thwart it alone and evil is keenly aware of this. In fact, I’m certain that evil is so certain of this, it doesn’t waste its time opposing me. No, evil is just using me as a pawn in its game to win out over good. Evil will stop at nothing to win, despite knowing it is all in vain. As far as it’s concerned, we are just collateral damage.
How we confront opposition
We confront opposition with three things: prayer, community and carrying on. I’m sure I sound like a broken record player, but the first step to any sound response must be prayer. It should come naturally to us as breathing as we should look forward to and cherish the time we spend with God as with our best friends. He is here and He is more for us than the rest of the world combined. Secondly, we involve others in our struggle. That’s right, we burden those around us with our struggles, but many hands (or prayers) makes light work. There are so many reasons, but we need community; we were never meant to be alone, friend. Finally, with continued prayer by ourselves and others, together we trudge onward. We cannot just stop at “waiting for an answer”. Our waiting is active, therefore we must carry on in the face of opposition until our Father tells us otherwise.
We all know by now, we will face opposition, but it is not against us. The opposition we face is merely a part of life, the losing side in a battle for our souls; it draws us nearer to Good. Evil knows that we are incapable of withstanding it alone, so it exploits us for the advancement of its demonic purposes. It cares nothing about us or for us. However, through prayer, community and perseverance, God gives us the strength to withstand any affront, any attack. While evil is beyond us, it is far beneath good. It is against good that evil fights, but it is only good who will stand in the end. Let us stand today, friend, in that assurance. And let us stand tall. Happy Monday!