Kick Him Where It Counts, in Jesus’ Name

Once, trying to escape from a bear hold
I nearly broke my own nose.
It’s good it happened in the karate school and not in a dark alley
Or I might not be writing this post.
In martial arts training, I learned that often the difference between remaining captive to an attacker and breaking free
is one small but mighty move.
When an aggressor attacks from behind and grabs you in a bear hold
Even if he’s bigger, stronger, and caught you off guard,
You still have options.
The first time I tried to break free, I forgot my training, I panicked.
I did most of the moves correctly (dropped down into a knee bend, loosened his grip, and whipped my arms up toward his face
Unfortunately, that’s when my hands connected with my own nose.
And oh, nuts. I’m doomed.
I forgot to step away out to the side first.
If I’d made that one move before doing the rest, the counter-attack would have been successful and rather than finding myself on my back on the mat with a sore nose, I would have been running away free.
And, as my instructor reminded me, if it had been a real assault, I’d have employed a “softening technique” before doing anything else.
Softening techniques include jabbing fingers into eyes or throats or kicking/elbowing the attacker where it counts.
Not something we practice in training but in a real fight for my life, you do what works.
This concept is true in spiritual battle, too,
But too often, believers neglect to kick the enemy where it counts,
Forgetting the truth that we are in a real fight for lives.
Like my attempt to break free that resulted in self-injury, we employ all these fancy moves (well-polished testimonies, amazing sermon graphics, service outreach to hungry people, interventions) before utilizing important first steps that would make our good efforts effective
The softening technique of warfare prayer.
We know that prayer is for praise and worship
We know it’s for expressing gratitude
We certainly know it’s for asking for things and expressing ourselves to God.
What we forget is that it’s also a weapon against the enemy, a strategic power that moves forces in the spiritual realm
Our opportunity to kick the enemy where it counts, in the name of Jesus.
When we love someone who is locked in unbelief, all our words may bounce off him or her like arrows off a granite fortress
But if we spend time first praying for their ears to be opened, for the voice of the enemy to be silenced in their life, for a binding of all forces that keep them in bondage to darkness
Then cracks appear, even in stone strongholds
And our words can slip through like well-aimed arrows reaching their targets.
The same is true when someone we love is bound by an addiction, a habit of sin, or a soul-crippling attitude.
The same is true when we are under attack and dark forces have come against our own lives. We can fight to no avail until we employ the softening technique of praying against the work of the evil one.
When Jesus taught His disciples to pray, He taught them to praise God and remember who He is, to invite His kingdom to come, to desire and align themselves with His will, to ask for what they need, to forgive others and receive forgiveness, and last, but not least,
To resist the forces of darkness in prayer.
“And lead us not into temptation, but deliver us from the evil one.” Matthew 6:13
In my do-over at the dojo, I got it right. I simulated a softening technique, took that all important step forward and to the side
THEN the rest of my moves were effective at securing my release.
I learned more than martial arts, that day. Jesus used that moment to teach me about spiritual battle.
In other words, kick darkness where it counts, in Jesus’ name. Then employ the rest of your moves.
Not only will it increase your chances of breaking others into freedom,
It just might prevent you from breaking your own nose.

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    The Conversation

  1. tina hunt says:

    Yes. Great reminder. Starting “right” always increases our opportunities for “success.” Blessings.

  2. I needed this post, Lori. Satan’s been on the attack lately and I’ve cowered rather than use my most powerful weapon – prayer.

  3. Ginny Jaques says:

    So true. The enemy blinds and binds. When we claim Jesus’ authority over him in those two areas, the one we’re praying for becomes free to make his/her own choice about Jesus. That kind of freedom is what Jesus died for. Amen.

  4. megan vance says:

    Thank you for sharing. I am reading a great old book on prayer and it is motivating me just like this blog post. It is called: Called to Prayer by Wim Malgo, Christian Literature Crusade.