You are of God, little children, and have overcome them, because He who is in you is greater than he who is in the world. -‭‭I John‬ ‭4:4‬ (‭NKJV‬‬)

The ruler of this world has a way of attacking, dampening, and even crushing, our spirit, if we give him the opportunity. Not all of our spiritual battles are fought on some epic or prominent scale, but are fought right in our own minds and hearts.

My first tire blowout

On a Friday night in July 2015, I had my first tire blowout. I was on the the way home from work and tried taking the freeway, and the car juddered violently. So, I decided it would be wiser to get off as quickly as possible. I took the roads home, and about nine miles from home, my front driver’s side tire burst about 7 p.m.

As you would expect, it was no coincidence that my car was within limping distance of a church parking lot…and even though there was no service that night, the gated lot was open and empty!


I thanked the Lord for this safe haven, and then surveyed the situation:

  • I had a bottle jack in the trunk to lift the car…but because of the flat tire, the car was too low to fit the jack under it!
  • The church was closed, so no one was around to help. I found some wood and bricks to roll the car into to get it high enough to lift, which I did…and then remembered my tire wrench was at home!
  • I walked across the street to borrow another driver’s tire iron…and it didn’t fit.
  • Some friends came by to take me to a nearby convenience store to get a tire wrench…and it didn’t fit.
  • It was getting dark.
  • I was missing out on a little birthday party we were hosting at our house for the same friends I asked to come take me to the convenience store. I sent them on their way to enjoy it without me, and specifically instructed them not to wait up.
  • I surrendered my male stubbornness and called for a roadside assistance driver for a tire wrench. The operator said the driver would arrive in 15 minutes. They arrived an hour later.
  • I hadn’t eaten in over six hours, and was sweaty and jittery.

With all of those things happening, I could feel my flesh rising up…frustration, impatience, indignation, self-pity.

But when I sensed them trying to rise up, I looked up instead of looking within and thanked the Lord for all the blessings he put before me:

  • My family was home safe
  • I was safe in this lot, even with bright lighting once the sun started going down
  • I had friends who were able to go out of their way to a party for them and take me without a grumble to a nearby station
  • I had my health!
  • I had technology in the palm of my hand to reach others and be reached…and could even give me things to read while I waited
  • I had a God whose Spirit in me could check me when I was getting in my own way!

The very verse I featured at the top of this post is the one that came across my phone’s screen as I waited for the roadside assistance driver. Of course.

Greater is the one living inside of me

The context of the verse at the top of this post is about false teachers in the world who can fool you into wrong thinking…godless thinking.

That’s exactly how the world wants you to think. It’s all about you, and you don’t deserve any difficulties or hardships or trials. No, you are entitled! You work hard!

But the Spirit in us, as believers, is greater and stronger than all the falsehoods and false feelings the enemy wants to penetrate our minds and hearts with. In every moment, situation, and season, let the Spirit help you discern all His blessings, so you can rise above your circumstances, just as God intended.

Today’s soundtrack

“Greater” by MercyMe is about the spiritual battle that goes on daily, but reminds us that the One within us is greater than anything or anyone the world has to offer.