Previous Challenge Entry (Level 1 – Beginner)
Topic: Valley (08/10/06)
TITLE: THE BATTLE
By Valerie Routhieaux
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Come to my valley, the valley of my pain, the valley of my greatest struggles, the valley of my greatest victories.
My valley is the place where battles are fought. You will not fight a battle on the mountaintop. That is the place of my joy. In the valley the enemy will do everything he can to defeat you with lies, deceit, malice, and intrigue. He will try to lead you in his ways. Ways that look tempting, but ultimately trap you, and place you in bondage. I will stand by your side. I will fight for you, and will lead you in the way you should go so that you will have the ultimate victory.
In my valley you must have your armor on at all times. You must have the helmet of salvation on your head, the breastplate of righteousness must be in place, the belt of truth around your waist, the shield of faith to protect you, in your hand must be the sword of the Spirit, your feet must be shod with the Gospel of peace, and in your mouth must be prayer.
Be ready to fight the greatest battle of your life. Here in my valley you will meet the enemy head on. Your helmet will protect you because he will try to use your mind as his battlefield. There will be lots of self-doubt that will try to invade. He will use your own words against you. Deceit is his number one weapon. You must keep your shield raised in front of you at all times. He will throw fiery darts of indignation and self-righteousness your way. With the shield you will be able to deflect every one. The belt of truth will keep you safe from the lies that he will tell in such a cunning way that they sound like the truth, but the belt of truth will be able to discern those lies, and you will be able to deflect them with the shield of faith. The sword must always be in your hands, never drop your sword. It is your greatest weapon against the enemy. With your sword you will be able to know your Commander’s will. He will instruct you and guide you in the use of the sword, and with it you will be able to crush every blow that comes against you. Don’t forget your feet. You need them to walk in the ways of peace, though that won’t be easy. That’s why you must always have prayer in your mouth. With prayer you can defeat your greatest enemy because I will be there with you to help you, instruct you, and guide you in every way you should go.
You will meet death in my valley. His shadow will try to swallow you up, but you must stand firm against him. You will find temptation in my valley, but I have given you the power to overcome every temptation with the sword of the Spirit, and prayer.
Now go out, with praise on your lips, the word in your mouth, the two-edged sword in your hand, and peace guiding your every step, and you will conquer the enemy in my valley. I will lead the way. Follow me.
The Captain of the host of the LORD
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