YOU are not really my enemies at all… in reality you are some of the best friends and training partners I have. You who have punched and kicked me with your lies, you have tried to knock-out people's faith and confidence in me, you have hit me in the face with false and damaging rumor punches… through your efforts there has been a champion work of grace wrought in this heart of mine that could never have happened without you.
The Holy Spirit, my friend and closes training partner, has been loyal, and faithful to stand back to back with me inside the cage-of-life during many hours of trial and need. He has been strength to my weakness, added joy to my heart in time of sorrow, and has girded up my faith amidst the raging sharp elbows of doubt. He has brought me before the championship throne of grace innumerable times in his prayers which words can not utter. I could not have gone another round without tapping out if it wasn’t for this wonderful friend.
But, believe me, I speak in sincerity and truth, there can be no championship title in the lives of God's Anointed Fighters without the leg kicks of chastisement from a real enemy. For when a bitter vicious person begins to do all they can to destroy me inside the cage-of-life then there is a work done that brings out all the wrong and evil attitudes and spirits that lie hidden and deeply rooted in my heart. When a friend extols all my good virtues and praises me from their heart of true friendship, I feel nothing but love for them. But, when I hear of an enemy who has unjustly brought shame upon me, there rises up a spirit of defending myself, and a spirit of "righteous indignation" to knock out the enemy. It is then that the precious Holy Spirit does His office work and reveals to me the wrongness of my own spirit. I see in me then, the things I did not know were there before. With repenting and sorrow of heart I cry to God, and He delivers me from that which I have seen in my life. It was hidden, lying dormant, until you, my beloved enemy brought it to light with your crucifying process. The Anointed Fighters of old would never have had the championship of being stoned for the Word of God—and no martyr's crowns could ever have been won by the early Anointed Fighters without real enemies.
You see, I cannot Tapout myself, and friends will not do it. So it takes you, my enemy, to bring me to the mat. And to the mat I must come, if ever I am to win the championship. But I have much progress yet to make before coming to the image of my lovely Jesus. There is so much I must yet learn about the “good fight”. And, my enemy, you are teaching me. I have learned that the road to the championship is by way of the cross. Without you I would not have found the way. Someone had to crucify my Jesus. Not his friends, not his disciples, and He could not do it Himself. So Satan and the princes of this world stirred up hatred in the hearts of His enemies, and the work was done. Had they known that they were bringing Him into His glory, and bringing about the salvation of lost mankind, they would not have done it. And I'm sure that if you knew the good your efforts are working out in my life, you would not want to help me so much. But the work is being done, and I have learned to love you because of it. "Love thy enemies", He said, and I wondered how I could do it. But you have taught me. For because of you I have grown in God, increased in His Grace, and partaken of His divine nature.
So, my friends, for in reality I have no enemies in flesh and blood, your work has been sharp and cutting, and many times I was hurt and wounded deeply. But out of these trying experiences I have come forth a better Anointed Fighter, and further on my way to being a champion for the faith. I doubt that you will receive any rewards for your lies and your efforts to destroy me, for "Woe unto them through whom these offences come." But I want you to know that though your loss may be great in the day of judgment, I love you and appreciate the ministry you have had in perfecting this life of mine.
adapted from Bill Britton - Eagle Saints Arise