If you watch her, she’s got the form.
Her fists are tightly wound and snug in the boxing gloves. She’s poised and if you watch her swing, you can almost hear the smack of contact.
Except the swing hits air.
She’s shadowboxing. There’s no one on the other side of her swing but an imaginary opponent. It’s the fight before the fight — you know, the one where the smack is real and the opponent is swinging too.
Shadowboxing is a great training exercise if you are a boxer, but it was never intended to be the real fight. It’s the warmup.
Yet spiritually that’s where many of us do our fighting and we don’t even have boxing gloves on.
I’ve been there too many times.
We gear up when our heart is hurt. We throw a punch with a passive aggressive statement, or that glare or that silence that weighs heavy in the room.
Punch, punch, swing and jab.
It never hits the real enemy, but it sideswipes a husband, or the clerk who is doing everything but checking out our groceries. It forces us to live with our “dukes up” internally at all times, making us tired, tired, oh-so-tired.
We have lots of excuses for our shadowboxing.
Just a little cranky.
Oh and don’t forget about that person. That circumstance. That [fill in the blank].
All the while the real enemy is having a heyday with our heart, our family, our relationships, our health.
This is not the way we are supposed to live. Not as woman of faith. Not as a child of the most high God.
So humble yourselves before God. Resist the devil, and he will flee from you. James 4:7
But you will receive power when the Holy Spirit comes upon you. Acts 1:8 ‘
I have given you authority over all the power of the enemy, and you can walk among snakes and scorpions and crush them. Nothing will injure you. Luke 10:19
But you have received the Holy Spirit, and he lives within you. 1 John 2:27
We can keep swinging at all the wrong things or we can fight the real enemy.
That right jab of truth connects with the enemy as we stand firm. That deep swing toward prayer warns him that we aren’t playing anymore.
We fight in the power of His Word and in His might, and those who have been the unfortunate recipients of our former shadowboxing get to see a woman who is a real fighter, strong and firmly rooted.
Praise the Lord, who is my rock.
He trains my hands for war
and gives my fingers skill for battle.
Let’s wrap our hands.
Let’s take a stance.
Let’s swing in faith and watch it connect with the real enemy.
No more shadowboxing for this girl. What about you?
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Whew! Good morning! I love a little boxing first thing:) I just spent last evening with such a beautiful, strong group of women…most of whom are experiencing big fights behind closed doors. Thank you for reminding us that the enemy is not of flesh and blood. I’ll be sharing!
Amen and amen! I am reading your post and giggling a bit at the similarities in our posts. Thank you for encouraging women, for spurring them on in faith and freedom!
(Side note, link up is not showing up, though it could just be my iPad)
Love this. Such good reminders today–thank you!
OH. MY. GOODNESS. This is so good, Suzie. I feel like this explains exactly where I was for most of 2015: shadowboxing. I’m a bit embarrassed by my empty swings (they are scrolling through my memory now, as I cringe at how I acted), but mostly, I’m ANGRY. I’m angry that I allowed Satan to maintain a stronghold such as this on me for several months. I’ve known for a few months that it was a spiritual battle all along, and have take the proper steps to begin fighting back (the RIGHT way!). LOVE that you posted Psalm 144:1…. I’m going to print that out and tape it where I can see it and claim it everyday!!! Thank you for always following where The Spirit leads you, sweet friend! #livefreeThursday
Whew yea! This was so good this morning. I needed this one today. I gear up more times than I need to. I’m the child of the Most High and I must begin to fight the real enemy. Thank you for this incredible post and uplifting stance to fight the real battle. Have a championship week, Suzie!
Amen! Powerful analogy here, Suzie! I’m with you — no shadowboxing! Give me the gloves and let me punch the real thing!
This is exactly where He took me with the writing prompt. Too bad I can’t say the writing was theoretical. Far too many times I’ve jabbed those I love…mistaking them for the enemy. Grateful for God’s patience. He’s a terrific trainer. 🙂
If we only wrote in theory, we’d never write anything. This is real!
Loving Luke 10:19 in this verse. My little has been fighting nightmares and fear of sleeping in her bed all of the sudden. I’m looking forward to this being our verse of the week on our bathroom mirror. Thank you for your words and this power verse today!
Father, help this sweet angel sleep. Quiet her thoughts. Cover her with peace and rest. In Jesus’ name.
Yes! We need to fight for ourselves, our spouses, and our friendships with the right pair of gloves on. This melted my heart today, and specifically ministered to my dilemma of the day. Suzie, I just love how God speaks through your words. You’re so encouraging!
Thanks, Megs! This is something we all face. I want to remember these powerful scriptures because the are my “fighting words.”
Sister, that’s a powerfully good word. Thank you xo
Ready for battle against the real enemy…what a compelling post. Thank you for hosting this party, too.
Amen, Suzie! We so often forget that it is what we do before the challenge or the attach or the crisis that puts us where we need to be when those things happen. It means the reality of discipline and none of us enjoy practicing a lot whether it is piano, spelling words, or fighting the enemy.
I recently started a program at my church for moms& children. It is different from MOPS as most of our families fall in the at-risk or dysfunctional category description. I just retired from a public school which offered a Parenting Grant for families who met the at-risk criteria. We meet weekly to play & read to the children, prompting school readiness & then have a Parent Discussion where talk about daily struggles & strategies to enhance the relationship they have w/ their children. Your book caught my attention because I often hear that they didn’t have a good role model & don’t know how to create a nurturing & ordered home. Would love to win your book! We’ve served almost 40 families since last September. It sounds like a perfect fit to guide our families!