I so often see, and have so often myself made, prayer requests that ask for peace, strength, joy, rest, and victory.  Yet, in so many cases, that which is sought is not realized.  Why?  Is He unable, uncaring?  I don't think so.  I think the real problem lies with ourselves.  We are praying for something He has already given us in Christ.  He has given peace, victory, strength, rest and joy, and given them in abundance.  He's done so in the resurrection of His Son.  So, it's not a matter of asking, but receiving.  Jesus said "Freely I have given, freely begin to receive."  Too many of us never "begin" to receive what has already been given us.  Watchman Nee said that we are already "more than conquerors" in Christ.  We already have victory, and so we "court defeat" by throwing away what is the believers fundamental position.  Victory. 
     Paul wrote in Ephesians that we are "seated with Christ," and that He is "far above all rule, and authority, and power, and dominion, and every name that is named."  If we are seated with Him, then aren't we also victorious in and with Him?  Most often, we see this as a future state, and not a present one, a lie that our enemy the devil has had great success in getting us to believe.  When he does, defeat, and not victory is what we most often live in.  Satan, as I saw him described somewhere, is a terrorist.  You don't negotiate with a terrorist, you crush him.  He has been crushed in Christ, under his feet.  If we are seated with Him, isn't he under our feet as well?  
     One of the most quoted scriptures is Ephesians 6:11, "Put on the whole armor of God that you might be able to stand against all the schemes of the devil."  Of this scripture Nee writes, "Stand implies that the ground disputed by the enemy is really God's, and therefore ours.  It was the Lord Jesus who carried the offensive into Satan's kingdom to gain by death and resurrection a mighty victory.....the territory is His....We only need to fight to hold it against all challengers."  Somehow, the enemy has managed to convince us that we are orphans that must come begging at the door of the rich man, hoping to receive a crust, all the while not knowing that we are sons of the rich man, and our place is not outside the door, but seated at His table, as His child, His son, His daughter.
    Far too long, and far too often, I have been found pounding on His door, seeking to get Him to open to me what is already opened.  Seeking to get what has already been given.  More familiar with defeat than victory.  Negotiating with the terrorist, rather than living as a conqueror.  Might it be so with you as well?  It's not that there won't be challenges or needs.  Roaring lions will still show up, giants will still come at us, and mountains will still block our way, but when we fully realize that we are, as His children, seated with Him in the throne room of the Father, then we needn't beg Him for victory over them, but live in the victory already won.  It will not be costless, but the outcome will be priceless, and the outcome is assured already.....in Christ.  How will we live?  Negotiating each day with the terrorist of our souls, or as conquerors in Christ? 
 
Blessings,
Pastor O
     
 
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