How Divine Wrestling Changes Our Identity

by | Jul 1, 2022 | SpiritLed Living, Spiritual Growth

All of us at some point will hit a place of getting the wind knocked out of us. We all experience unexpected detours and times when there seems to be no way out.

But there is One who lives in us, the Lord Jesus Christ, who gives us the strength to overcome obstacles. We can do all things through Christ who strengthens us as we battle giants, distractions, pain and disheartening moments. We can overcome because there is life beyond the moment of what we are going through.

My friend, Robert Stearns, from Eagles’ Wings, believes these times are life-defining moments to be embraced. “Jacob became Israel after he wrestled. Your identity is changed in the wrestling. In those various moments of genuine, life-defining crisis, you have to step into the place of wrestling with God.”

Sometimes, he says, this looks like an extended fast, where we say, like Jacob, “God, I am not letting You go until You bless me! I have got to get breakthrough in this.”

He continues: “I had a wonderful mentor in my early years of the Jewish-Christian work that I do, Rabbi Gerald Meister. He spoke eight languages fluently. He was just absolutely brilliant. He looked at me one day and said, ‘Robert, never trust a spiritual leader who doesn’t have a great crisis of faith at least every five years or so.’ Wow!”

He explains that if we don’t face a crisis of faith, it means we’re not journeying with God. “You’re not becoming,” he said. “You’re just settling.”

I remember being a wrestler in high school and the discipline, practice and courage it required to face challenging and intimidating opponents without fear. Likewise, Robert says, we should not be afraid of the wrestling in life or the journey that leads us to those moments.

“Don’t be afraid of asking deeper questions of yourself, of God and of the people around you,” he says. “Don’t be afraid to say, ‘Why are we doing what we’re doing?’”

When we wrestle with God for revelation, He reveals Himself in new ways and brings us into new levels of relationship with Him, which changes our identity. We see this in John 15:15 when Jesus says to His disciples, “I no longer call you servants, because a servant does not know his master’s business. Instead I have called you friends, for everything that I learned from my Father I have made known to you.”

As Robert says, “It’s about embracing the wrestling, embracing the journey and understanding that my identity is going to be changed. Jacob became Israel. Cephas became Peter. Saul became Paul. Their identities were changed, but each time it followed moments of really divine wrestling.”

Dr. Doug Stringer is founder and president of Somebody Cares America/International. As an American of Asian descent, Doug is considered a bridge-builder of reconciliation amongst various ethnic and religious groups. He is a sought-after international speaker, addressing topics such as persevering leadership, reconciliation, community transformation, revival and more. He is host of A Word in Season with Doug Stringer & Friends, with new programs posted weekly on the Charisma Podcast Network.

CHARISMA NEWSLETTERS

Stay up-to-date with current issues, Christian teachings, entertainment news, videos & more.

The latest breaking Christian news you need to know about as soon as it happens.

Prophetic messages from respected leaders & news of how God is moving throughout the world. 


MORE FROM CHARISMA

Spirit-Filled Pastor: How Does God Lead Us Today?

Spirit-Filled Pastor: How Does God Lead Us Today?

Whether it is the Spirit leading or forbidding in the book of Acts, or the Spirit leading throughout Christian history, it’s clear that the leading of the Spirit is important. In the Old Testament, it appears that the Spirit of God could be withdrawn completely from...

Joyce Meyer: Keys to Winning Your Race in Life

Joyce Meyer: Keys to Winning Your Race in Life

Everyone has a race to run. That just means we all have a life to live. The apostle Paul says in Hebrews 12:1 (NIV), “Therefore...let us throw off everything that hinders and the sin that so easily entangles. And let us run with perseverance the race marked out for...

Prophetic Word: The Lord Says, ‘I Am the Consuming Fire’

Prophetic Word: The Lord Says, ‘I Am the Consuming Fire’

God says that during this season, He is turning up the heat, finding the gold and bringing His refining fire. Job makes a powerful statement of faith as he says of the Lord, "When he has tried me, I shall come out as gold." God knew Job's heart and Job knew the heart...

5 Practical Strategies for Handling This Record-Breaking Inflation

5 Practical Strategies for Handling This Record-Breaking Inflation

Unless you have been living under a rock, you know we are dealing with some pretty big inflation in the U.S. right now. And according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics' latest CPI report, the stuff we buy every day is 8.6% more expensive than it was 12 months ago....

What Is ‘The One Thing’ God Wants From You?

What Is ‘The One Thing’ God Wants From You?

In 1971, I was invited to spend one month in Singapore at a new institute that had been started by John Haggai. It was still in the formative stages then—a place where Asian church leaders would be trained and challenged to witness for Christ. Today, more than 40...

37 Prayers for the Suffering Persecuted Church

37 Prayers for the Suffering Persecuted Church

It was a Pentecost bloodbath and most Christians never heard about it. More than 50 Christians were killed in one of the deadliest terror attacks on Nigerians this year. Scores of gunmen rushed in to kill Christians in the midst of worship. All told, over 360 million...

RECENT ARTICLES

The Man Who Spent 23 Minutes in Hell: The People I Saw in Hell

In 1998, God gave me a life-changing vision of hell. I receive many questions about my experience from people all over the world, but one question I'm often asked is, "Who did you see in hell?"...
The United States: Birthed in Prophetic Symbolism

The United States: Birthed in Prophetic Symbolism

One of the most amazing facts about the Founding Fathers of our nation is this: The one referred to as the "voice" of the revolution (John Adams) and the one referred to as the "pen" of the revolution (Thomas Jefferson) both died on the same day—July 4, 1826—exactly...

Why Did God Give ‘This’ to Me?

Why Did God Give ‘This’ to Me?

It’s a question I frequently hear. It’s one I’ve asked. And maybe it’s one you’ve asked, too. The question is, “God, why did You give this to me?” This can be any number of issues, from emotional or psychological struggles to symptoms or sicknesses, disabilities or...

No Evil Can Stop What God Has Planned

No Evil Can Stop What God Has Planned

I sense it. And I perceive a growing number of people in massive proportions sense the increasing momentum of power and might worldwide. Something is on the horizon—something more eerie and ominous than what the people of the world have ever before experienced. Even...

Unsplash

Pin It on Pinterest