3 Essentials of Self-Defense
Ever been cornered by a stranger? It’s a most unpleasant feeling, to say the least, and it is compounded by feeling ill-equipped to deal with the situation. After a situation like this, I began my journey into learning some self-defense.
Recently I was listening to a self-defense instructor as he was saying that there are three essentials in defending yourself. They are:
1. Be Calm
2. Be Prepared
3. Use Your Whole Body
As he spoke, I repeated them under my breath over and over and suddenly became quite aware that the Lord was nudging me to listen, not just for defending myself against flesh and blood, but “against the spiritual forces of evil in the heavenly places” (Ephesians 6:12).
We are indeed living in a world that is fallen. And although I don’t want to sound like an alarmist, the reality of this world is that we have an enemy who hates us and will try to take us out. To live otherwise is to be a picnicker on a battlefield.
So how can we be wise as we defend ourselves against enemy attack? What are the essentials for defense in the spiritual realm?
1. Be Calm: When attack comes, we need to be levelheaded enough to maintain some stability. I don’t know about you, but I want to be beyond letting attacks steal my peace, my joy, my confidence. To be calm is to not permit attacks to make us question our identity in Christ or our Heavenly Father’s heart and purposes for us. Yet being calm does not mean I do not react at all. This leads to the second essential…
2. Be Prepared: We know we have been given the Armor of God as detailed so beautifully in Ephesians 6, but how many of us are actually wearing it daily? When the attack is already underway, it’s a bit late to be scurrying around trying to locate the different pieces of our armor. We need to have them on and be well acquainted with the weapons at our disposal. And what are our weapons? The Word of God, Praise, and Prayer. If we know that the enemy knows our pressure points, it behooves us to have the appropriate weapons at the ready. For instance, if I know that the enemy likes to shoot flaming arrows at my confidence in my purpose, I need to commit to memory verses that speak that confidence back into me.
3. Use Your Whole Body: If you are attacked in an area, it is pretty clear that the enemy sees you as a threat in that area, so it’s not time to be halfheartedly committed. It’s time to use your whole body, to give your all to push back the enemy and win this victory that is yours by Christ Jesus. Use the authority that He has won for you through the cross and His resurrection. Using your whole body also means using all the resources the Lord has given you. Make sure you are locking arms with others in the Body of Christ. We are given our brothers and sisters in Christ for a reason – for mutual upbuilding and to have each other’s backs when the fighting gets tough.
Peter warns us to not be surprised by trials, thinking something strange or unique has come upon us (1 Peter 4:12). It is part and parcel of being in this world. Instead we are encouraged to find the joy in the midst of fighting the fight that Paul calls, “good” (1 Timothy 6:12; 2 Timothy 4:7)! Why good? Because the victory is already ours. We do not fight alone and we have been given all we need to win. Even in the midst of the battle, we can be calm, we can be prepared and we can use our whole selves to win.
“Finally, be strong in the Lord and in the strength of his might. Put on the whole armor of God, that you may be able to stand against the schemes of the devil.” Ephesians 6:10-11