through His Word
by Katy Kauffman
I met my first wolf as a preteen visiting the city zoo in Paris, France. He was black, and I think he liked me. As I walked back and forth in front of his fenced habitat taking pictures of the wolves, he followed me. Head down. I got a kick out of this and started walking faster back and forth in front of him, hoping he would keep following me. He did. My mom called out for me to stop. I think she was wiser than I. Not too long after that, I encountered a different wolf. As a teenager, I began having tormenting, negative thoughts. After a while, my mom realized they were coming from a spiritual enemy.
They hounded me until I understood they were based on lies and I could say no to them. It worked, and that wolf left. About fifteen years later, another wolf hounded me. In my late twenties, I experienced a spiritual battle that topped all of the others. Negative thoughts, fear, frustration, oppression, and depression. The battle (which I had brought on myself) became so severe, that it was hard to sleep, pray, or even sing praise songs. I stopped my blogging and buried myself in Scripture. I found hope there. I read about real men and women who battled darkness— whether it was Satan or their own fears or struggles. I saw what they needed to do to win the victory, and I saw what God did for them. The notes I wrote down about their stories turned into a blog series, then a Bible study to teach at church, and later a book. Faith, Courage, and Victory is the result of God turning my hardest spiritual battle into a whole lot of good. I’m forever grateful.
Jesus taught about a certain wolf that likes to mess with God’s sheep (John 10:10, 12). Satan and his forces enjoy hounding us with whatever they can use to make us afraid, lonely, distracted, frustrated, or depressed. But the spiritual forces that come against us are nothing compared to the great and mighty power of the God of the universe (Ephesians 3:20; Ephesians 6:10-13; Psalm 18:17, 27:1, 29:11, 91:14-16; Mark 1:34). Jesus, our Good Shepherd, protects and empowers His sheep. When we stay close to the Shepherd, we can count on His help to say no to the wolf that wants to make us afraid. We can refuse the spiritual depression and negative thoughts he sends our way.
If you’re going through a season of spiritual depression right now, or a difficult spiritual battle, be convinced of the mighty power of God to rescue you. Your deliverance will require both God’s work in your life and your cooperation. But it’s possible. No wolf is bigger than God. No demon is stronger than the Lord Jesus Christ. Remember how God has helped you in the past, and trust Him to be with you now. Do what you need to do, to stop walking in front of the wolf ’s cage. Come away and bury yourself in Scripture, draw close to the Shepherd, and revel in the strength and joy that come with knowing our great God. Say no to the wolf, and flourish in the victory that God provides.
“Finally, my brethren, be strong in the Lord
and in the power of His might.”
Ephesians 6:10 NKJV
© Copyright 2017 by Katy Kauffman
*This article is an excerpt from Breaking the Chains, published by Lighthouse Bible Studies (Buford: Georgia, 2017), pages 147-148.
This article comes from Breaking the Chains: Strategies for Overcoming Spiritual Bondage, a compilation written by twenty authors. This book shares stories and strategies for how to overcome over twenty-five forms of spiritual bondage. If you would like to learn more about this book, visit our website or Amazon. Our site has a link to a free leader guide for using the book in a group study.
One final thought: Sometimes we don’t recognize that the source of a problem or difficulty is our spiritual enemy. What are some signs that a spiritual wolf is trying to steal our joy, peace, or strength, and how can we be alert to any ambushes?
We don’t want to become overly focused on Satan’s strategies, since we want to keep our focus on the Victor. But how can we practice God’s warning in 1 Peter 5:8? Share your thoughts in the comments below.
“Be sober, be vigilant;
because your adversary the devil walks about
like a roaring lion, seeking whom he may devour.”
1 Peter 5:8 NKJV
spiritual warfare, spiritual battles, Satan, victory, Breaking the Chains, Katy Kauffman, Lighthouse Bible Studies