I thought I was ready to start swinging my sword and hacking up the enemy and saving the defenseless and all that hero work. There probably was some of that kind of training in the next step, but I didn't really notice it because the Lord began to greatly emphasize my need for compassion.
I was annoyed, to say the least. I was ready to be a warrior. Do warriors have much compassion?
If they are in the Lord of Host's army, then it is a very real requirement. I must admit, my questions to the Lord were not very professional, or mature.
Here is what I should have prayed: "Lord, how does compassion prepare me for battle and war? Why is this important to Your heart?"
Here is what I actually prayed, "Lord, You're kidding. Compassion! I wanna get to the good stuff, where I'm praying and demons are screaming and fleeing."
Just keeping it real here, folks! It is further proof that I had a lot of work to do before I was ready to be wielding a sword.
It was a huge lesson to me, on why the Church is so full of wounded people. Sometimes there are wounds from legitimate enemy attacks upon the Kingdom, but how much of it is caused by friendly fire instead. How many untrained civilians suddenly feel powerful holding their sword (the Bible in this case) and begin to swing it around in bravado, wounding people around them carelessly, or without even knowing it.
As the Lord highlighted these ideas to me, I became self-conscious of how many times I might have accidentally wounded someone by speaking out at the wrong time or in the wrong spirit. The tongue is likened to a sword (Prov. 12:18) as well as the Word of God (Hebr. 4:12) Both are very sharp and can be dangerous when used improperly. I'm pretty sure I've used both of my swords wrongly and wounded people in the past.
So next came a deep repentance. A very real sorrow as I realized the truth of the consequences of my own immaturity over the years.
Compassion began to become a very real ingredient to me in being able to wield my sword more safely. I could appreciate the wisdom now in this being the next step.
Stay tuned for more on my journey of "Making Me Believe".