Are you aware that God also saves the best for last? Yep, pudding comes at the end! And He calls His pudding, “The Battle!” Now, for most of us we would NEVER consider a battle being the best part of all that the Lord has invited us to take part in. Especially these crazy battles we face here on earth!
But, in Ephesians 6, before He talks about the armour and being prepared for battle, He uses the word “finally” which being interpreted is the best for last! Yep! There is nothing the Lord enjoys more than teaching you how to do battle and then sending you out to defeat the enemy of your soul. This is the ultimate glory and honour that you can give to the Lord.
To be strong in the Lord and the power of His might is to be supernaturally infused with His joy. This joy comes from being in fellowship and life-union with Him. Going into battle without a joyful relationship with Jesus will make the battles wearisome and victory evasive. Therefore, the first key to overcoming the enemy of your soul is a fun-filled prayer life with the Father, the Lord and the Holy Spirit.
Sometimes we have simply been taught to put the horse before the cart. We have been taught a lot of “spiritual warfare” prayer, which for many has been unfruitful, instead of how to enjoy the presence of the Lord first. In Revelation Jesus tells the church in Ephesus that they have fallen from a very high position in Him because they have lost their FIRST love. They prayed, they laboured hard for the Lord, the kept His name and did many good works for Him, yet He was displeased because they had forgotten that the most important thing in life is to fellowship with Him in a childlike love and adoration. They were working to please Him instead of loving Him and making Him happy.
Jesus instructed them to return to their first love otherwise they would not be able to overcome the enemy of their soul and thus lose the battle and the reward that He had planned for them. Simply, the enemy was defeating them, and they could not see it. Their fight was misguided, and He is leading them back into victory by remembering who HE was.
Paul is doing the same here in Ephesians. The first instruction he gives, before ever putting on any armour and going to battle, is the encouragement to have a joyful, lively union with the Lord. Once you have entered into the joy of the Lord in your time of prayer then you wait on Him to see what He wants to do next. He may ask you to just stay with Him and play, or sit down and teach you something, or show you where you need to do battle. Be open and responsive.
Above all you remember your first instruction which is to love the Lord with all your heart and soul and strength (or joyfulness). The Lord is looking for a loving and joyful relationship with you.