I don’t know if this has happened to you, but it’s become a pretty predictable routine for me. We do a big week of services—be it Easter, Christmas, VBS—and the weekend that follows is a tech disaster. Weird problems crop up that we’ve never seen before; equipment that worked yesterday doesn’t work today; and of course we’re all tired and a bit cranky from putting in a 70-90 hour week. What a better time for the enemy to call in an attack?
If I’m honest, I used to just get really pissed off those weekends. But more and more, I’m starting to see what is happening for what it is; spiritual attack. It really hit home this past weekend. We had just come off VBS, which was a very busy, but amazing week. Over 60 kids gave their lives to Christ, which is incredible. Hundreds more were encouraged and ministered to. New families were connected to the church, and we will undoubtedly see growth from all of that.
When we take that much ground from the enemy, he’s going to want to strike back. And what better way than to go after the tired and beleaguered tech team that’s just given their all the past week. When we’re tired, we have less patience, our decision-making process slows down, and we are prone to making simple mistakes. Throw in some crazy tech issues, and we’re in for a mess.
Now, I’m not one of those, “Looking for a demon behind every rock” kind of guys, but I do believe Scripture is clear that we are part of a battle that we cannot see with our eyes. When we strike at the strongholds of the enemy, he’s going to strike back. Understanding that will help us measure our response. Here are few things I’ve been trying to do more around these events (and I’ll admit right up front that I have not mastered this—this is a work in progress).
Expect the Attack, and Pray in Advance
Like I said, this has become a pretty predictable pattern. I can be pretty confident that we will have issues the next time we do a big event. So I should be praying about it in advance. Praying for protection, for my team, for my equipment and most importantly, for my attitude.
Take a Deep Breath
I’m an INTP. The number one word that describes an INTP is “Competence.” I expect myself to be competent, others to be competent, and my equipment to be competent, ie. it needs to work. When I encounter incompetence, I get frustrated. When gear doesn’t work, I get frustrated. So I’m trying to learn to take a deep breath, slow down, and figure out the problem.
Pray in the Moment
Recognize what is happening in the moment and pray about it. I’m not saying you need to stop rehearsal and hold a prayer meeting (though you might). What I find myself doing is praying on the way up the stairs to the tech booth. And usually it’s something like, “God, help me to not be pissed off right now, and help me to fix the problem.” That’s about it. I’m amazed at the power of that little prayer.
Realize that if you are being attacked spiritually it’s because you’ve done some great work during the week prior. That’s a good thing! Now keep a positive attitude and work through the issues. Your team will respond better if you can keep your cool, and the problem will get solved faster if you aren’t yelling. I know this from experience.
Ask for Community Prayer Cover
I’ve been known to throw up a tweet asking for prayer once in a while. It’s amazing how effective that is. As members of the Body of Christ, we need to support each other. But I can only support you in prayer if I know what you’re going through. You an only support me if you know what I’m dealing with. Again, it doesn’t need to be a long, drawn out prayer vigil; just a quick ask for prayer and some quick requests to the Father will make a huge difference. I’ve seen it.
As I thought through all of this over the weekend, my attitude toward all the issues changed. I was still tired, but we got through the service, and our pastor thought it was amazing and had no idea we were having any issues (we really are the Men in Black). Sunday ran like a Swiss watch, so I guess the prayer worked.
So when you find yourself getting beat up on a weekend, keep calm, pray and carry on (to paraphrase Facebook). What is your story of spiritual attack on a weekend?