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Biblical, battle-tested, real-life help for "living by faith in the Son of God" (Galatians 2:20). — Steve Fuller

How to Fight the Fight of Faith

What do you do?

What do you do when you feel jealous or discouraged?  Or when you are bitter towards someone, or love fame more than Jesus?

Do you try using will-power to change your heart?  Do you feel guilty and go into a tail-spin?  Do you press on with life and hope time will change you?

I’ve done all these — and none of them helped.

But there’s good news

The good news is that everything in the Christian life flows from faith in Christ — joy, peace, and hope (Rom 15:13), love for others (Gal 5:6), victory over sin (I John 5:4), power over Satan (Eph 6:16), and obedience (Rom 1:5; Heb 11:8).

So when we lack any of these, the problem is with our faith.  Which means that to strengthen these areas we need to fight the fight of faith (1Ti 6:12; 2Ti 4:7).

Here’s steps I take to fight this fight –

Turn immediately to Jesus and trust Him to help you.

Don’t try to change yourself first.  You can’t.  But Jesus can — and will.

So turn to Jesus with your worry, lust, or laziness — and trust Him to help you.  Because of His mercy He accepts you as you are — and He will change you into what He calls you to be.

Earnestly plead with the Father for more of the Spirit’s work.

No matter how weak your faith, no matter how unspiritual you feel, the Holy Spirit has the power to transform you (Luke 18:27).

So earnestly ask the Father to increase the work of the Spirit in you — to strengthen your faith, show you His glory, and break the power of sin.  Pray passages like Psa 13:3; Mark 9:24; Eph 1:17-18.

See your unbelief.

Don’t be too introspective — focus more on God and His promises than yourself.  But it does help to look inside and see what you are trusting to satisfy you more than Christ.

So ask — what are you desiring more than Jesus?  And — what is causing you to disobey Jesus?  That’s what you are trusting.

It can also help to ask — which of God’s promises am I not trusting?

  •      the promise that I can be forgiven through Christ?
  •      the promise of heart-satisfaction in knowing Christ?
  •      the promise that God will use trials to bring me even more joy in Him?
  •      the promise that obedience will bring me more joy than sin?
  •      the promise that God will provide everything else I need?

Confess your unbelief.

See and feel how you have dishonored God by trusting other things to satisfy you more than Jesus — or by not trusting God’s precious promises.

Understand that your unbelief has been sinful.  Confess it to God without excuses.  Ask Him to forgive and cleanse you through Jesus’ death on the Cross.  Trust Jesus to forgive, help, change, and satisfy you in Himself.

When you do, you can be assured that you are completely forgiven and that God is passionately committed to helping you.

Find powerful Scriptures.

The Spirit uses the sword of the Word to defeat Satan’s lies (Eph 6:17).  So find Scriptures that display the all-satisfying glory of Christ — like Dan 7:13-14; Mark 14:61-62; Hab 3:17-18; Zeph 3:17.

And find Scriptures that proclaim whatever promises you are not trusting — like

  • 1John 1:9 (I can be completely forgiven through Christ),
  • 1Pet 1:8 (full joy is found only in Christ),
  • 2Cor 4:17-18 (trials can bring me more joy in Christ),
  • John 14:21 (obedience will bring me more satisfaction in Christ),
  • 2Cor 9:8 (God will provide everything else I need).

Direct your heart towards Christ as He is revealed in His Word.

This might be difficult.  Let’s say you are working too much because you want to impress people.  That shows you are trusting people to satisfy you more than Christ.  And it will take intense, Spirit-empowered effort to turn your heart from trusting people — to trusting Jesus Christ.

But pray for the Spirit’s help, and then set your heart on Christ as He is revealed in His word.

Pray passionately over the truths of God’s Word until you feel the Holy Spirit changing your heart.

Ask Him to increase your faith in God’s promises (Mark 9:24).  Plead with Him to free you from sin’s lies (Jer 13:25).  Call upon Him to open your eyes so you see the all-satisfying glory of Jesus (Psa 119:18).

God might do this quickly, or He may take some time.  Before your heart is changed you may need to leave off prayer to pick up your kids from school.  But then return to prayer, because in time God will meet you.  Even seeming delays are part of His loving plan to bring you the greatest joy in Him.

So trust His timing.  Continue battling in prayer.  He will deliver you.

Invite believing brothers or sisters to pray with you.

Jesus promises even more of His presence when we gather with others (Matt 18:20).  So confess your struggle to them.  Ask them to pray with you.

The Holy Spirit will work

As you press in with prayer and God’s Word, the Holy Spirit will work.  He will change your heart so you feel the beauty and certainty of God’s promises, the emptiness of sin’s promises, and the all-surpassing glory of Christ.

Once again you will trust all that God promises to be to you in Christ Jesus.  And you will experience renewed joy and peace (Rom 15:13), love for others (Gal 5:6), and a passion to obey Christ (Heb 11:8).

Do you …

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(Photo by soldiersmediacenter at everystockphoto.com.)

14 Responses

  1. juliet says:

    this write up has encouraged me alot,i feel like am even struggling to breath,at times it feels like God has forgotten me and sometimes i wonder what i am going to do with my life.But now i feel hopeful and know God lives in me through Jesus his son.

    • Steve Fuller says:

      Hi Juliet,

      Thanks for letting me know that this encouraged you. I am so glad that you are feeling more hopeful. And check out the article I posted today (11/12/2012) on how we can escape from doubt and despair. I was deeply encouraged as I wrote it.

      In Christ,

      Steve Fuller

  2. Nsikan Udofia says:

    Thanks Fuller for this inspiring blog.My question is,what does it mean to turn to Jesus? and how do i do that, if lust or envy occurs in a public gathering or during a discussion?

    • Steve Fuller says:

      Hi Nsikan,

      Thanks for your encouragement. And you raise a really important question — about what it means to turn to Jesus.

      Turning to Jesus means directing your heart and thoughts towards him, coming to him as you are, and trusting him to forgive, change, and satisfy you.

      It’s also important to ask for his help, and to set your heart on relevant verses from the Bible.

      As we do this, we will experience the Holy Spirit changing our hearts so we see and feel and trust Jesus Christ as our all-satisfying Treasure.

      So how do we do that when we are in a public gathering? What I do is do the best I can while in public. But as soon as I can get time alone I then seek God more fully.

      I hope that helps, and thanks again for your comment.

      In Christ,

      Steve Fuller

  3. Thank you for this insightful post, Steve. Just the right words I need in my current season. I learned a lot. God bless you more!

  4. Jyoti says:

    Hi Steve,
    Thanks for this Blog.
    Thanks for sharing some practical steps to fight a good fight of Faith.
    Points mentioned here are very nicely written and brought forth.
    Jyoti

  5. Anonymous says:

    “So trust His timing. Continue battling in prayer. He will deliver you.”

    Very very helpful, Steve. I know he’s got me in a season of testing, trials, and tons of temptation (which is a good thing James 1:2,3), but I really want ALL OF MY satisfaction in life to be in Christ. Not my gf, not my family, not weightlifting, music or anything but God.. And I don’t know how to enjoy that place of utter reliance but I must obtain that … I just want to be so secure in God that even if I lost everything I had, I could be content with the God I know and love being in my heart. How can I approach this? Daily practices? Efforts? Prayers? This is my biggest concern. Let me know if you have any words of wisdom.

    Ps -I could like chill on this blog and forum all day there is so much cool stuff. Just letting you know.

    • Steve Fuller says:

      The most crucial daily practice is to spend time prayerfully meditating on God’s Word — beholding who he is in Christ — worshiping Him, trusting Him, learning about Him.

      As you do that the Holy Spirit will strengthen your faith and show you Jesus’ glory so you will be filled with joy and peace in believing.

      It’s also crucial then to take steps of obedience — doing whatever work God has called you to do, loving those around you, being part of the body of Christ, making disciples who make disciples who make disciples.

      As we obey, with our hearts set on Christ, God will also use that to strengthen our faith and fill us with His Spirit.

      I hope that helps!

  6. Bro Paul Eseosa says:

    I thank God for raising such a powerful and God fearing revivalist to our generation in dis end time,i was bless after going through the message.
    I really need ur help pastor,i am also a fellow worker in Gods vine yard,i was deliver from the power of darkness through Gods word by a Bro Samuel Adebayor from Nigeria,i gave my life to Jesus in 2007 from Cultism,smoking,drinking,imorality and feltish power of satan,2008 i recieve a call from God by revelation as an Evangelist and dat same year i went to Missionary school,thanks be to God i was graduated and was sent to a mission field in Nigeria also.at the begining of the mission work everytin was fyn though it was battle cos it a land posses with diffrent powers of darkness and in all God gave me victory with so many spiritual gift and our church started growing with speed.being a single dat was when the battle started,the devil started tempting me which the lord help and deliver me so many time.the problem now is where i need ur prayer and cancelling is dat anytime i am with opposite sex especially those the has used me to deliver from either sin or power of darkness i will be filling lust.i dont know how it started,i have pray and fasted against the power of immorality still it is still there,so i need ur help…

    • Steve Fuller says:

      Hello Paul,

      Thank you for sharing your concerns here. And I apologize for the late reply — somehow I overlooked your comment.

      I suggest you look to the column on the right under “sexual temptation.” I hope those posts will help strengthen you as you battle temptation.

      Jesus is worth it all,

      Steve Fuller

  7. Renee says:

    I feel so much better after reading this my sold was feeling empty and my Faith needed to be encouraged…I thank you for sharing such healing messages.

  8. Tricia says:

    How can we blend living totally by faith, trusting God for everything in our lives, with relying on other security like insurance, 401Ks, etc.?

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