In 1989, I served for several months at a Christian Rehab center in North Carolina. The kids in the program had come to Christ but needed help getting over addictions of all kinds.
One week, they tried to figure out the best way to fight a spiritual battle. Praying for hours, fasting and prayer, or hours of Bible reading focused on the Psalms, were some of choices on their lists.
One night when I was deep asleep, I heard, “Dannie. Dannie.” It was an audible voice. I said to my friend Anne-Lise, asleep across the room, “Are you okay?”
“I’m asleep. Of course I’m okay. Go to sleep!” I dropped off right away.
“Dannie. Dannie.” Once again I heard the voice. “Anne-Lise, what do you want? Is something wrong?” A bit grumpy now, she said, “I’m trying to sleep. Could you just be quiet and go to sleep?”
A familiar passage filled my mind at that point. “Samuel. Samuel.”
I didn’t go back to sleep, but waited. Sure enough, again that audible voice. “Dannie. Dannie.”
“Yes, Lord. I’m listening.”
“Tell the kids that the key to spiritual warfare is obedience. The key to spiritual warfare is obedience.”
Well, who could go back to sleep after that, right? I prayed for courage to tell them . . . and everyone I’ve met since that incredible night. It’s my mantra.