For the past few weeks, I’ve been telling people I’m in an all-out war against cold air (which, of course, goes back to my fear that this winter’s heating bill is going to do me in). Last week, when my dog was having trouble getting rid of the blanket she ate and vomited on my carpet two or three times a day, every time I was cleaning up, phrases like “taking it to the enemy” and “attacking it at the source” kept coming to mind. And as it would happen, yesterday, more war imagery emerged as I “battled against grime” and “stayed the course,” deep cleaning my “new,” second stove top (Granted, when I feel overwhelmed, I’ve wanted to “cut and run,” but where would that leave me?)

As a normally passive person, I’ve been surprised by all these hawkish thoughts. Do I feel like this house it my enemy? Is there pent up aggression seeking to escape from my soul? Do I listen to too much tv and radio, with all those sound bites? Or am I becoming too used to being part of a nation at war?

The wars in Iraq and Afghanistan are certainly highly charged topics in our country, and I don’t want to engage in so much political mumbo-jumbo. I also don’t want to be naive enough to think that our nation can be so deep into war that my very vocabulary changes and not affect many other areas of my life.

So while I’m fighting grime, what other bellicosities have I taken on? Who or what else am I now thinking of in terms of “enemy,” “battle,” “aggression,” or “hostility.”

John 16:31 “Jesus answered them, ‘Do you finally believe? In fact, you’re about to make a run for it—saving your own skins and abandoning me. But I’m not abandoned. The Father is with me. I’ve told you all this so that trusting me, you will be unshakable and assured, deeply at peace. In this godless world you will continue to experience difficulties. But take heart! I’ve conquered the world.'”