January 2, 2024

How Not to Give Away Your Power

Written by Shana Schutte

To live the empowered Christian life means that I don’t just live by my senses.”

Thoughts from daily Bible reading for today – January 2, 2024

Now to him who is able to do immeasurably more than all we ask or imagine, according to his power that is at work within us, to him be glory in the church and in Christ Jesus throughout all generations, for ever and ever! Amen. Ephesians 3:20-21

Ever since coming to Christ over 30 years ago, I haven’t known how to act in the authority that has been given to me through the Holy Spirit. I have known how to pray and to make requests of God, but I haven’t known how to stand my ground and fight.

But in this new season I have learned afresh there are times when we must fight the Adversary, and His evil schemes even while we surrender to God. We must take up the shield of faith and stand our ground when the battle gets hot. We must remember that everything that happens, happens for a reason and sometimes those reasons aren’t God’s will. We are in a battle as revealed in Ephesians 6:12:

For our struggle is not against flesh and blood, but against the rulers, against the authorities, against the powers of this dark world and against the spiritual forces of evil in the heavenly realms.”

In the battle one way we can stand our ground and fight is to not give over our power to someone who doesn’t have in mind the things of God for us.

Right after I was diagnosed with metastatic breast cancer in July 2023, my husband, Clark, and I made an appointment with an oncologist in a nearby hospital to hear about next steps. During our visit, she shared a treatment plan but also said, “There is nothing that can be done. I can’t cure you. I can give you some drugs to knock down the cancer so it doesn’t spread, but after a while, because cancer is smart, it will mutate and continue to grow. I can give you some palliative care to make you more comfortable, but that’s all that can be done.” 

Then, she started to say something that made me engage in the battle and not give away my power. She started to tell me when I was going to die. So, I calmly held up my hand and said, “Stop. I don’t mean to be rude, but no one gets to number my days but God.” She apologized emphatically and said, “I’m sorry. I won’t say it.”

I believe that if I had heard her words, they would have lodged in my mind and negatively affected me when I fully believe that God’s plan for me is full recovery and healing. I also knew—and know—that this cancer isn’t just about cancer. I am in a spiritual battle, and I am fighting this disease through the power of the Holy Spirit. 

If I had received her prognosis rather than believe what God has told me about my recovery, rather than believe in faith, I would have given over my power.

The Christian has access to two worlds: the natural world (that which we can see and hear and feel) and the spiritual world. To live a victorious Christian life means that we access all the power that has been granted to us to say yes to God’s promises, yes to what He has personally told us, yes to His Word, and we walk by faith even though what we can see, hear, and feel is telling us otherwise.

To live the empowered Christian life means that I don’t just live by my senses. Instead, I live by the truth of God with a knowledge that my battle is not against flesh and blood, that it’s a battle against forces of evil in high places, and I use the authority of the Holy Spirit living inside me to lay a hold of that which Christ had promised me.

If I only live by what I see, hear, and feel, I will end up giving up ground to the Adversary. I won’t grab hold of God-given promises He wants me to embrace. I will agree with others around me who seem smarter than me, who intimidate me, or who aren’t walking by faith. I will give over my God-given power to fight the enemy and his evil schemes for my life.

There are people who don’t have in mind the things of God for us. They may even be well-meaning. But we must remember to walk by faith, to hold onto what the Lord has said as fact, and not give over our God-given power and authority. Stand your ground. Take up the shield of faith. Believe what the LORD has told you through the Holy Spirit and through His Word.

“The Lord is my light and my salvation—whom shall I fear? The Lord is the stronghold of my life—of whom shall I be afraid?” (Psalm 27:1)


Lord, I engage in the battle. I stand my ground knowing that all your promises are yes and amen! You have created me to be an overcomer and to defeat the Adversary’s schemes. I press into You and trust You as the God who empowers me! I will not give over my God-given authority. Amen.


Verbally proclaim the victory that you have in Christ over any scheme of evil in your life based on God’s truth.

Related Reading

John 10:10; Proverbs 18:21; Luke 10:19

Worship Resource

Elevation Worship: See a Victory


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