Empty Chair on the Battleground

Empty Chair on the Battleground

Do you know the feeling where one minute you “have it together” and then one thing after another your world feels turned upside-down? It’s a battle and it feels like one.

Psalm 23:5 says, “You prepare a table before me in the presence of my enemies…” We are in a battle, warring against the enemies that attack us very strategically throughout the day. A few of my enemies include fear, despair, and appeasing others.

Imagine standing on a battlefield, with bows and arrows, fire and smoke, clashing sounds of armor and swords mixed with a whirlwind of hate-filled speech, twisted messages and no end in sight. And in the very center of the battle, you see a table, placed with the finest china and fresh flowers. Your favorite foods are piping hot, awaiting you. There are two chairs: one is for you and Jesus sits in the other. He motions to you, “Come on over…have a seat.”

The clashing and yelling and fire and bloodshed continue around the serene table. All the things we fear are out there, trying to steal, kill and destroy all that we love. Yet, all the things we need are right here, in the place God’s prepared for us. If we ignore the invitation and continue fighting, our energy will be drained and we’ll ultimately lose the battle.

But, if we accept the offer and take our seat, against all logic and comprehension, we will find sustenance and rest, support and companionship…and reminders of what is true and lovely…what we’re fighting for in the first place! We will find energy to go back out and fight one more time, having been filled up again. We will be able to remember that we are not fighting this battle alone. We don’t have to do this on our own strength, out of our own reserves.

It’s been a battle around here lately, full of emotions and having to release many, many things. I think I’m (finally) learning that I don’t necessarily have to arrange a particular time to meet with God. I don’t always have to “set the table”. When I’m in the heat of battle, what I really need to do is stop focusing on what I need to do!  I just need to look for His table and the seat He’s saving for me, where I can find a few moments of rest and sustenance. He’s there in the battle…right there with me…waving me over to enjoy some one-on-one time with Him.

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