LIFE as a Strategy for Victory

by Katy Kauffman

It attacked my baby tree. It wasn’t enough that this woodpecker had attacked the new metal vent caps on the roof. Now he was going for my precious baby tree. I call it a baby, because this fifteen-foot tree is special to me. For thirteen years, he didn’t grow much, and then last year, poof! His branches went a bit wild, finally growing, and I didn’t have the heart to trim them.

I watched as the woodpecker attempted to drill a hole in this tree. But then, he looked at the tree and flew away. I realized it was the life of the tree that made the woodpecker retreat. Instead of finding rotten wood to carve a home out of, he found life.

Our spiritual enemy Satan tries incessantly to find a weak spot in our lives. In our thinking, our desires, our relationships, our fortitude. He wants to drill a hole in our joy and peace. While he can never inhabit a believer’s heart, he and his forces will do everything they can to harass a child of God. The beautiful but pesky woodpecker taught me something about spiritual victory—it’s the life in a soul that makes the enemy retreat. It’s Jesus’ life within us that enables us to be overcomers. Mark Chapter 9 illustrates this in another way.

A desperate father brought his son to Jesus’ disciples, but they could not cast out the demon who possessed the boy. The father then met Jesus and didn’t realize what power Jesus Himself possessed.

“If You can do anything, have compassion on us, and help us” (Mark 9:22 ESV*), the father pleaded. Jesus gave him hope—“All things are possible for one who believes” (Mark 9:23). Faith in Jesus gives hope when what we long for seems impossible.

Jesus’ next words are some of the most liberating ever spoken—“Come out of him and never enter him again” (Mark 9:25). This boy would know total freedom from this demon. Free at last. Free forever.

When Jesus has freed us from darkness and transferred us into His kingdom of light, we are free forever from the power of Satan to control us. When we depend on Jesus in everyday life and fill our hearts and minds with His word, we fortify His truth and way of living within us, helping us to overcome temptation and spiritual harassment. When Satan comes knocking, he won’t find a hollow heart, void of truth and power. He’ll find life—a flourishing dependence on and fellowship with the Son of God and King of Kings.

Walking in sustained victory in the Christian life means that we walk in sustained fellowship with Jesus. His life flows through us and strengthens our commitment to God and His ways. The next time you feel tempted or threatened by our spiritual enemy, cling to Jesus and flourish in His truth and love. Draw near to God, leaving Satan with the sole option of retreat.

“Submit yourselves therefore to God. Resist the devil, and he will flee from you.”
James 4:7

Has a verse or promise from God ever given a renewed strength or life to your soul? Tell us in the comments about how God has helped you to deal with spiritual battles, and stay close to the Savior. He can rescue us out of any difficulty or give us the grace we need to walk through it in victory.


*All verses are taken from the ESV. 

© Copyright 2019 by Katy Kauffman


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In our Sustaining Life’s Victories series, we’ve talked about “Victory’s Default Setting” and “Desire’s Ambush” so far. Last time was about "Loving Brownies a Little Less" if you missed it. Be sure to follow this blog to receive future Bible study devotions in your inbox! Guest bloggers and I will be talking about walking in victory throughout the year.


victory, life, spiritual warfare, temptation, closeness to God, LIFE as a Strategy for Victory, Sustaining Life’s Victories, Katy Kauffman, Lighthouse Bible Studies

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The Scrapbooked Bible Study: A Blog by Katy Kauffman

Award-Winning Author, Editor, Bible Teacher

An editor for Refresh Bible Study Magazine, Katy Kauffman is also a Bible study author who loves to write about the treasures of Scripture. Her Bible studies focus on winning life's spiritual battles, and her blog shares snippets of "scrapbooked" encouragement. Learn more about The Scrapbooked Bible Study, and follow Katy's blog to receive weekly posts. 


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