Author: Abbi Bloem — Host: Natty AndersonPosted on: July 9, 2024

Unlocked: Daily Devotions for Teens

READ: EXODUS 14:14; 33:22; ISAIAH 42:13; ZEPHANIAH 3:17

“Go to the boulder!” He did not yell over the noise of the battle, but Rhyn heard, and without even having to look for the rock he had sent her to, she knew exactly where to go. So Rhyn ran to it. It wasn’t a very big rock, but if she crouched down, it would cover her on one side from the battle that was raging. Rhyn’s weapons and hope were long gone—she had lost them somewhere when the fight began, and now it was a full-blown war spread out before her. She had been running without much direction. This way from a sword, another way from a javelin, here from the pounding of horses’ hooves, and there from the clashing of shields against metal. Everywhere mud. Everywhere blood. Nowhere safe to run.

But then, the king was there. Of course, he had always been there. She’d just forgotten to look for him and follow his voice above all the noise, and she’d become disoriented and lost her purpose on the battlefield. Rhyn could hardly believe he’d come for her, but he had.

That’s when she caught sight of the ogre. It’s a mighty wonder how time slows in the moments before the worst thing can happen. And Rhyn saw it all move before her like dripping honey. The ogre approached, he lifted his ax, his eyes fixed on her. And then from above her, perched on the rock, one mighty warrior halted the ogre in his steps, his sword meeting the ax with a harrowing zing. The king took a step over her and, with one heavy thump, thrust his shield into the dirt, covering her completely from the battle. Now she could see nothing but the safe haven he had created around her, the rock and the shield, and amid the raging battle, she was safe. • Abbi Bloem

• Often we view Jesus as merely a kind, gentle teacher. But the Bible tells us that Jesus is also our Rock and our Shield (Psalms 3:1-8; 18:2; 28:7). And He is the dreaded warrior we see glimpses of in the Old Testament. How could this image of Jesus as the Divine Warrior help us understand how He acts on our behalf?

• As humans, we are helpless to save ourselves, but Jesus fought for us all the way to the cross. He defeated sin, death, and all the powers of evil and darkness by dying for us and rising from the grave. Because He has saved us, nothing can tear us away from His love (John 10:27-30; Romans 8:35-39). If you want to know more about this good news, check out our “Know Jesus” page.

• When Jesus returns to restore creation and raise us from the dead, He will right every wrong, and every foe will be silenced. In the meantime, He wants to help us through everything we face, even when we forget to listen to Him, even when we fail to trust Him. How can these truths give us hope when we experience the battlefields of life?

• Jesus calls us to listen to His voice and follow where He leads, and He empowers us to do so through the Holy Spirit. As Christians, we get to be part of His good and purposeful work—because He has extended grace and forgiveness to us, we can extend grace and forgiveness to others, bringing His light to dark places, fighting the lies of the enemy with the truth of the gospel, and extending loving kindness amidst the harshness of our broken world so that others may know the love of Jesus too (Matthew 5:14-16; Ephesians 6:10-20; Philippians 2:1-18; 2 Corinthians 5:11-21). And, don’t forget, we also get to rest in the safety of God’s tender love for us (Psalms 18:19; 23:1-6). We can learn to rely on God and discern His voice by spending time with Him through praying and reading His Word, both by ourselves and with fellow Christians. Who are trusted Christians in your life? How could you help each other listen to and follow Jesus? How could you remind each other of the hope of the gospel and the sureness of God’s love, even in tough times?

But the Lord is with me like a mighty warrior. Jeremiah 20:11 (NIV)