Did you know that we’re fighting a war? It’s a war that’s been raging for thousands of years, and anyone who believes in Christ is a soldier in it. Satan has been struggling with God for thousands of years. It’s a war that we can’t really see, though, so it’s easy to forget about it. And the combatants are the stuff of science fiction movies — demons and such — so they are easy to dismiss. But just because we forget or refuse to believe that a war is being fought all around us doesn’t make it any less real.

I was told once that our lives are a war and every day is a new battle which we either win or lose.

Please forgive another popular culture reference. I’m a huge fan of the show 24. Every season, Jack Bauer saves the nation in a 24-hour span of time, and every episode (which is one hour out of that 24-hour span) he wins a battle against terrorists or he loses a battle. Like in one episode, the woman he’s come to love is killed. That’s a loss. But in another episode he kills the man responsible and finds the information he needs to win the war. That’s a win.

Life is very much like that.

Every day we have a choice to either do what God has called us to do or to ignore what God wants and do what we want. Our actions and our choices will determine if we win the battles we face every day. It can be daunting, though, because sometimes the battles we face are difficult. There can be hard choices, and sometimes it’s easier to lie. Sometimes it’s easier to cheat. Sometimes it’s easier to be selfish. Sometimes it’s easier to just do what feels right. But battles are never supposed to be easy. Even the dictionary defines the word battle as a hostile encounter or engagement between opposing military forces. There’s nothing easy about battle. There’s nothing easy about war. So what makes us think that the easy way out is the right way out?

I know that I have lost more than my fair share of battles for a variety of reasons. But every day is a new day, and God’s mercy is new every morning. And when I wake up I try to remember that and set my sights on winning the battle for the new day.

But no matter how many battles I win or lose, it’s very encouraging to know that God has already won the war. The battles that we face today are just minor skirmishes while we’re waiting for God to come back and get us.

I love what Romans 8:35, 37 say.

35 Can anything ever separate us from Christ’s love? Does it mean he no longer loves us if we have trouble or calamity, or are persecuted, or hungry, or destitute, or in danger, or threatened with death? 37 No, despite all these things, overwhelming victory is ours through Christ, who loved us.

Not just victory. Overwhelmning victory. And it’s ours through Christ.

How we fight our battles here on earth will determines the blessings we have here and in the life to come, but no matter how many times we fail (and, boy, do we all fail) God has already won the war. He loves us and He saved us, and through Him the victory is already ours. Satan is just throwing a temper tantrum right now because he can’t have his way and he knows it.

But there will come a day (soon) when we won’t have to fight anymore. When all the battles will end and we can enjoy life the way it was meant to be.

But until then, don’t let down. The Bible tells us how to live, so we should do as it says and keep fighting for what is right, no matter how difficult it might be. God will always make a way for us to do the right thing. And on the days when we lose, there’s no shame in seeking help to get back on our feet. Everyone loses battles.

And whether you win or lose, God still loves you. And that’s pretty encouraging.