We’ve all heard the phrase “know your enemy”. Recently, I was reminded that sometimes, couples need to be reminded that their spouse is not their enemy. In fact, most couples are unaware who their their real enemy is. We often get so caught up in the emotion of a moment, a current situation or circumstances that we turn from (or on) each other instead of turning to each other. Consequently, we end up in battle alone fighting the wrong enemy.

For we wrestle not against flesh and blood, but against principalities, against powers, against the rulers of the darkness of this world, against spiritual wickedness in high places. ~Ephesians 6:12 (KJV)

The God’s Word translation says:

This is not a wrestling match against a human opponent. We are wrestling with rulers, authorities, the powers who govern this world of darkness, and spiritual forces that control evil in the heavenly world.

It doesn’t take much to start the fighting cycle: A quick barb or jab born out of stress, a misspoken word, frustration or a bad day can easily escalate into a huge fight, separation and isolation. This is exactly what you’re REAL enemy wants. In this position he begins to sow those little words of discord: “he doesn’t love me”, “she doesn’t want me”, “he’s trying to control me”, “I can’t trust her”. You’re isolated and feeling alone so it becomes easier to entertain those negative thoughts—thoughts that you might not normally consider. It opens the door for your enemy, the devil, to have access to a place he was never intended to be— your marriage.

Thankfully. Paul goes on to tell us how to handle this fight:

Therefore, put on every piece of God’s armor so you will be able to resist the enemy in the time of evil. Then after the battle you will still be standing firm. Stand your ground, putting on the belt of truth and the body armor of God’s righteousness. For shoes, put on the peace that comes from the Good News so that you will be fully prepared. In addition to all of these, hold up the shield of faith to stop the fiery arrows of the devil. Put on salvation as your helmet, and take the sword of the Spirit, which is the word of God. ~Ephesians 6:13-17

Right now so many marriages and families are under attack. Threats of divorce and separation loom in many places. While darkness has fallen over many homes we have been given an amazing set of tools to use when our marriage and family are under attack. Mighty tools designed to change the tide of battle as long as we use them against our real enemy and not each other.

Go to war against the right enemy…Your spouse is not your enemy!