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Warrior Strong

From 1980 until 2001, the U.S. Army slogan was "Be All You Can Be" and the rest of it was "in the Army". It has morphed from "Army of One", "Army Strong", into the present "What's Your Warrior?", with each lasting a few or more years in various recruiting campaigns. I kind of like the present one, but the "Be All You Can Be" one really speaks of what God desires of his 'army' of believers - he wants us to be mature and complete, becoming all he intends for us to be - not as an Army of One, but as Warriors in his army of billions upon billions.

My brothers and sisters, you will have many kinds of trouble. But this gives you a reason to be very happy. You know that when your faith is tested, you learn to be patient in suffering. If you let that patience work in you, the end result will be good. You will be mature and complete. You will be all that God wants you to be. (James 1:2-4 ERV)

Warriors become strong not in the absence of trouble, but right there in the middle of it. We sometimes forget that in our daily walk with Jesus, thinking everything should just 'run smoothly' and life should somehow be less challenging. The opposite is quite true in his army - challenges are what make us strong - they help us develop our 'warrior' spirit. To 'be all we can be', we must 'become'. Becoming is a state of development - it is not a one-time thing. We learn from dealing with trouble much more than we learn from just hearing about the tactics we can utilize to counteract trouble!

Tactics are good - I learned all kinds of tactics in the military. We practiced various maneuvers, challenging ourselves to memorize certain things we'd need to know should the need arise to go into actual warfare. I never saw the battlefield, but I learned the tactics used there. Guess what? Those of you who have actually seen the battlefield will likely tell me the 'tactics' were good in theory, but you need more than 'tactics' to survive in the heat of the battle. The tactics guide your actions, but it is the action that actually accomplishes the victory!

We sometimes forget that warriors need to be engaged in a battle. We can train all our lifetime for the battle of one day - but if we don't ever take the step into the battlefield, we are just 'trained', we aren't proven. Proving comes in the thick of the fight, putting into practice what we have learned. Our faith isn't proven by learning the 'tactics' of faith. It is proven when we have to put it into play in the thick of the battle! We don't run into battle unprepared - we need to learn the tactics we use to fight well. We also don't sit by and never fight! Our faith isn't going to develop on the sidelines of life. It develops most on the battlefields some will never even realize we have entered. Just sayin!

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