You’ve been with him for so long now. You know, love and treasure Him. He is God. Jesus cannot be harmed by common men who aren’t God. You must protect Him. You must keep Him from harm. He must remain with you.
You pull Jesus aside to address his comment that He must suffer. You say, “Jesus, far be it with you. This will never happen with you.”
You’re only trying to help. You’re only trying to save Him. You’re only trying to preserve Him from harm.
Jesus replies to you, “Get behind me, Satan! You are a stumbling block to me; you do not have in mind the concerns of God, but merely human concerns.” (Mt. 16:23)
You were a stumbling block. Why?
You had good intentions, but you injected yourself where you weren’t invited to intervene.
The plan was owned by Father & Son , not Father & Son + disciple.
We can do the same thing in the lives of those we love. The plan is between Father & son or Father & daughter. Yet, we weasel our way right in, saying, “Nope this right here is about Father & Son + me + my opinions + my fear!” We take out our chisel and crack into God’s good plan. Woe to us who break what God is building in others.
We often break God’s good plan in others when we:
1. Tell people what to do.
2. Decide how people should think.
3. Instruct people based on our opinions.
4. Try to run in and fix bad situations.
5. Demand others think well of us.
6. Rescue people from their feelings of sadness, loneliness, etc.
7. Excuse away people’s issues, rather then letting them confront them.
I assure you: when a lesson is delivered by us, it’s forgettable. But delivered by God, it is unforgettable, undeniable and unbelievably life-changing.
Let’s make room for what God is doing. He has things handled.
But, that was precisely the problem. I couldn’t be still. My heart was racing a hundred miles an hour like a race car ready to crash. Ever been there? Where the face of your problems > loving face of your God? Where it is hard to know if God can/will fix what you’re doing, done or are about to do?
“Your child has been exposed to Hand, Foot and Mouth Disease.”
I gave them the blank stare. I didn’t know what this entailed, but I did know by nature of the name it sounded – horrific. Anything with the word “disease” in it is about enough to send mom’s stomach flip-flopping and reeling in anxiety. Add visions of pussing, oozing and painful sores – and mom was already identifying imaginary red spots.
“Were they exposed to the sick kid a lot – or a little?”
“Oh, a lot and it is very contagious.”
Thanks, lady. Thanks a lot. Oh, and thanks a lot, God. Don’t you know?
Now, I’d just come off the stomach flu that built into a cold that seemed to never end that morphed into a bad illness with a mean attack from the inside-out. I won’t go into details here. Needless to say, I’d been run ragged. Now this?
Now, I was sure, dear daughter was deeply ill. I could see it happening, and none of my prayers could stop this unforeseen visitor from coming. God wouldn’t help me. I was all alone on this one.
Where do you feel all alone?
Where have you opened the gate to worry and found not only it walked in, but doubt too?
This may sound simplistic, but: Shut the gate.
Doubt disassembles the goodness of God.
It wrecks the benefits of love.
It becomes cancerous over time.
It corrodes dependence on God.
It is the devil’s gambit.
“But, how, Kelly, how?” You ask me.
We fight with the 5 A’s – that’s how! We:
Acknowledge the lies and God’s corresponding truth.
Ask for forgiveness.
Admire the power, height, and love of God.
Abandon our own will.
Affirm God’s goodness through thanksgiving and prayer.
Finally, brothers and sisters, whatever is true, whatever is noble, whatever is right, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is admirable–if anything is excellent or praiseworthy–think about such things. Phil. 4:8
Filter the bad out of the good, and you’re left with good. And, if we’re left with good, we’re left with God. We want this.
Prayer Against Destructive Doubt:
God, you are in everything. You are above everything. You know everything. You are orchestrating everything. All control is yours. All vision is yours. All power is yours. You move the handle on my life. Thank you that you want to take care of me. Thank you that you love me. You withhold no good thing from me. Thank you that I can trust you. Not with half my heart, but with my whole heart. Thank you that you know my way, even when it looks not like “my way.” Grant me greater faith to trust you by faith. Stand closer to me so I can dwell in your love. Help keep my mind steadfast on things that are true, noble, right, pure, lovely, admirable, excellent and praiseworthy. If I move with you, I won’t depart from you. Teach me God in all your ways. I am open and willing to what you want to do in me. I need you, God. Amen.
The devil loves us weak.
God loves it when we renew our S.T.R.E.N.G.T.H.
Do you know what this looks like?
“But those who hope in the LORD will renew their strength.
They will soar on wings like eagles;
they will run and not grow weary, they will walk and not be faint.” Is. 4:31
Can you imagine not growing weary or faint? Do you soar?
Or has the devil kept a toe-hold on your coattails, preventing you from ever flying?
It’s easy to let that happen. To stay down.
Just this morning I was driving and a little bug kept hitting my car. I started to get frustrated, “Why is he tailing me? He’s making a mess of my window,” I thought. What I failed to realize was that only 2 minutes before, I had been worshipping. This little pest stole the moment.
We all have pests chasing us. They try to steal God’s place of glory in our heart. These little nuisances are often what the devil uses to drive our hearts away from God. We usually allow it.
What tends to be hard for us to accept is that straight up bible knowledge won’t always save us. Why? The devil doesn’t care how much scripture you know. He doesn’t even care if you have the whole bible memorized. He doesn’t care if you have a PhD in Christian Apologetics. He’s never worried about the mind, the devil is always worried about the heart.
My warning to the church? Let’s not get so enthralled with our mind, that we lose our heart in the process. Some churches, I believe, are allowing this.
This horrifies me. I don’t want to live my life as a bible-toting mouthpiece, but as a woman wielding Jesus’ power in the world.
What about you? Might it be time to fortify your heart, the inner place? So the inner radically changes your outer world?
8 Tangible Tips to Renew S.T.R.E.N.G.T.H.
and Win the War against the devil:
1.Scripture list: Hunt the bible and dig out the best verses. Carry these on a sheet with you, post them on your morning mirror or hold them in your wallet. No matter what, rely on these words as if they are your crutches and you have no legs.
2.Train your mind to immediately notice the taunts of doubt, discouragement, devastation and despair. How? Take inventory of your feelings. When you hear those stinkers hit you, refer back to #1.
3. Respond with truth. The devil takes ridiculous statements and massages them to sound plausible in your mind. If you answer back with a hard-lined, get-out-of-here, truth-filled comeback – he will not as easily want to come back.
Devil: “If you are the Son of God,” he said, “throw yourself down. It is written…” Mt. 4:6
Jesus: ‘It is also written: ‘Do not put the Lord your God to the test.’ Mt. 4:7
After 3 attempts and 3 successful comebacks, Jesus won his wildnerness encounter with the devil. Keep on fighting the fight and the fight will subside.
Then the devil left him, and angels came and attended him. Mt. 4:11
4.Engageyour mind with holy and you will find yourself committed to peace.
“Whatever is true, whatever is noble, whatever is right, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is admirable–if anything is excellent or praiseworthy–think about such things.” Phil. 4:8
5. Need Jesus all the time. All the time. Not a little bit of the time, but every time. Just think, if you are always calling on Jesus, how can the devil be calling you astray?
“For the Son of Man has come to seek and to save that which was lost.” Lu. 19:10
This means, call out, when you feel unsure. Call out when you feel heavy. Call out when you feel hungry. Call out when you feel tired. Call out when you need wisdom. Call out when you hit boredom. Call out when life gets futile.
6. Glorify God, out loud. Speak proud. Speak with the full strength of Jesus Christ behind you. Speak like one whose team, every time ends up as overcomer.
It sounds like this:
You reign and rule Jesus. You will win. Every time. You are holy and mighty to save Christ. You will bring me through. I can do all things through Christ who strengthens me. Period.
7. Thank God. If you are saying thank you, the devil can’t as easily put a bag over your head and plumage your mind with the idea that you are being stolen, ruined and left in some far off land where God can’t see you. Instead, you will rise up in wonder at all the riches God is raining down on you. Thankfulness is like a rainbow on a dark and rainy day.
8. Hope. Endlessly believe in the power of God.
This is what it sounds like when put in action:
God is greater than my problem. God will win in the end. My light and momentary affliction is creating for me an eternal glory that far outweighs the here and now. 2 Cor. 4:17 Jesus stripes healed me once and they will do it again and again. He is healer. It may look like a windstorm today, but God is pushing into me his image and I will stand firm. The Lord is doing an inner work; it transcends my vision. God will always be faithful. I can walk in complete assurance of this.
Find new heights of faithfulness,
God will be your strength.
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I didn’t know where the thought came from. Like an unwelcomed visitor, it showed up unannounced. It just pushed its way in – and sat down. Holy had to leave. It doesn’t do well with things vile, deplorable and downright not from God. Worship left the air too. All eyes were on the house warming gift of worry in the middle of everything; it was tied up with the bow of anxiety. It’s a horrible gift.
In me, what felt like a temple, now felt tainted.
Certainly, I let in a monster that wasn’t supposed to be around, but I wasn’t sure what to do about it. When you let this kind of thought in, they don’t leave – they are rude like that.
So rude, that sometimes they keep you up all night as you try to wrangle them like untamed and bucking broncos. They rise and let you know how tall they are. They contort around you spelling out the word D.O.O.M.
I hate them, usually.
Knowing this, I come to these very important question…
How do I block the random attacks of the enemy that arrive like arrows in the night?
And, are there certain conditions that make me more vulnerable?
I think there are. Paul lets us know that we should be wise to their schemes (2 Cor. 2:11).
If we want to stand firm, we have to keep up our defenses up and our knees down to the ground.
You see, to be aware is to stand active in prayer.
So that your heart does not pursue an enemy affair.
Prayer is our best defense. God is our best offense.
Beyond this, if we know when the devil is prone to attack us, we can raise up our requests and calls for protection during these times. In essence, we can F.I.G.H.T back!
5 Times the Devil Loves To Attack Christ Followers…When they are:
If you are hungry for life and not filling up on God, you are prime meat.
If you are hungry for food and are feeling a little off kilter, you are a tasty choice.
If you are head in iPhone, not soaking in the love of God, you are often – toast.
If you are off-footed and nearly falling, even more the devil knows his punch will knock you out.
If you are in a bad mood, he knows you will open the door to his negativity.
If you are open to lies, he will feed them to you.
If you are willing to listen to pride, he will lure you to it.
If you are up for misunderstanding God, he will distort him to you.
If you are discouraged, he will lure you to quick-fixes.
If you are beaten in relationships, he will feed you bad words about the another person.
If you aren’t seeking God, the devil will seek you and make you wonder if God is really good.
If your mind is confused, he will confuse it some more.
If your will is weary, he will wear it down to its breaking point.
If people get testy, he will test your limits.
We can’t blame everything on the devil. Nope. That would miss this thing called flesh (Gal. 5:16) that works in its own self-serving way. But, when the devil is at play, the fertile ground described above is primed soil ready for insecticide-ridden hands.
Yet, when left protected and guarded, God grows something new – it is called perseverance and determination.
Praise be to the LORD my Rock, who trains my hands for war, my fingers for battle. Psalm 144:1
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Hey, little child of God, I have something to tell you, so listen up.
Happiness is over there. Do you see it? Go ahead, suck in what it could be. Feel it. Relish in it. Why not? Don’t you deserve it – for all you have suffered?Aren’t you tired of being stuck?
I mean, look at you! You idiot!
You marginal fool, why aren’t you doing anything, something, to change everything?
You are stuck in a church that is not ideal.
You are stuck in a house you don’t want to be in.
You are stuck with a family who doesn’t get you.
You are stuck with a job that is horrible.
You are stuck with friends that don’t really care.
You are stuck in a life that constrains.
You are stuck with kids who are unruly and disobedient.
You are stuck with a spouse who irritates.
You are stuck with a body that is ugly.
You are stuck with health issues that you can’t beat.
You are stuck with pressures and problems.
You are stuck being overweight.
Look at you, your life is horrible. I think, I really think, you should have so much more.
Psst…did you know? It doesn’t have to stay this way…you can do things about it. Now listen up before your whole life is ruined, before all the marbles are dumped on your head and before you find yourself in a burnt heap of ashes, here is my charge for you:
1. Take control.What God hasn’t stepped in to do, you can do. Those he hasn’t changed, force them to change. Drive your power in.
2. Seek happy at all costs.If something doesn’t make you happy, flee from it to find frolicking fun elsewhere. You only live once, you don’t want to sit around missing out. Fulfill your desires and feel good.
3. Remind yourself of all you don’t have.
“You dumb idiot. While everyone else is getting ahead, you are falling backwards. Do something about it. It’s not like you are that good of a Christian anyway; you always mess up. You failure. Give up.”
Speak like this to yourself and you will be bound to get somewhere.
4. If you can’t get what you want, find another way to make yourself feel good.
Drugs, sex, alcohol, shopping, porn, controlling, demoralizing, taunting, instigating, stealing, worry, abusing – it doesn’t really matter – just fill your deep need to numb the real belief you are unloved, uncared for and shipwrecked. The moment of controlled power will feel intoxicating.
5. Put yourself first. You are the only one who can fulfill your deep needs. You have to fight hard to get what you want. Defend yourself, arm yourself, distance yourself and put up an armored stronghold around your body. You are a walking fortress; keep it that way or you will be ruined. Shoot, if necessary.
Other quick tips:
– Keep your eyes on what you see before you; make a snap judgement and abide by feelings.
– Don’t let the word “patience” fool; God really isn’t working for you.
– Don’t serve anything, or anyone, that doesn’t lead to success.
– There’s no one who can come through – like you can.
– You’ll miss out if you don’t grab the world’s cup tightly – and suck it up.
– Put yourself first, no one else will take care of you.
– Get super wise and don’t let anyone tell you otherwise.
– Mock those who are poor in spirit, “Weaklings!”
– Doubt “hope” and stick with “despair” and you’ll fill up with indulgences of the world, for sure.
– Embrace shades of grey and blurred lines between good and evil – you can rationalize things that way.
With this, applause to you! Cheers for you! Great glory to your work! Great progress to your name! Great power to your charge! Great impact to your step! You will do it; you will find pleasure in all you ever wanted, in the enticements and in the lure of your eye.
You know you want it.
So, step in, grab it and bite –
it is the best apple you will ever eat, even it it makes your blood run cold, even if 10 minutes after you feel nauseated, even if the shame adds thirty layers of chains to your hide, even if you trap yourself into a box you can’t seem to claw your chained way out of, at least you will have joy for a moment, ecstasy for a minute and rule for an hour.
The thief comes only to steal and kill and destroy; I (Jesus) have come that they may have life, and have it to the full. Jo. 10:10
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I go about my day, but sometimes my day goes about wrecking me. It goes about making me overwhelmed in a moment of frustration, angry at others, beaten by circumstances, discouraged by my actions and frustrated that I am not more of a “halo” Christian.
Ever felt this way?
When I come to think about it, I think it has much to do with what I am thinking about.
Because what we think, we live.
Are you listening to the conviction of the Spirit
or the condemnation of the devil?
10 Ways to Know:
1. The Spirit infuses love, the devil accuses with shame. The Spirit himself testifies with our spirit that we are God’s children. Ro. 8:16
2. God draws us near, the devil pushes us lonely into fear. “I sought the Lord, and he answered me; he delivered me from all my fears” Psalm 34:4
3. The Spirit hands out an invitation, the devil speaks accusations. The Spirit invites us to life-change and liberation while the devil invites us to death. Now the Lord is the Spirit, and where the Spirit of the Lord is, there is freedom. 2 Cor. 3:1
4. The Spirit makes us new, the devil makes us dwell in the old. The Spirit works in the now, the devil reinforces yesterday. He has made us competent as ministers of a new covenant–not of the letter but of the Spirit; for the letter kills, but the Spirit gives life. 2 Cor. 3:6
5. The Spirit speaks correction, the devil speaks destruction.
The Spirit reinforces the Word of Life, while the devil rips it apart, reworks it and denies it to suit his needs to destroy us. When he comes, he will prove the world to be in the wrong about sin and righteousness and judgment. Jo. 16:8
6. The Spirit reveals, the devil steals. These things God has revealed to us through the Spirit. For the Spirit searches everything, even the depths of God. 1 Cor. 2:10
7. The devil pushes legalistic law, the Spirit pushes life-giving liberation.
If the devil can make you work hard to be loved, he will. The Spirit is always at work to confirm your position as child. The Spirit you received does not make you slaves, so that you live in fear again; rather, the Spirit you received brought about your adoption to sonship. And by him we cry, “Abba, Father.” Ro. 8:15
8. The devil sends us on a parade of feelings, the Spirit sends us into a journey through God’s Word. Take the helmet of salvation and the sword of the Spirit, which is the word of God. Eph. 6:17
9. The devil reminds us how bad we were, the Spirit reminds us of how secure and significant we will be as we turn back to God. For it is by grace you have been saved, through faith—and this is not from yourselves, it is the gift of God.Eph. 2:8
10. The Spirit brings self-denial, the devil encourages self-will, self-promotion and selfishness. I have been crucified with Christ and I no longer live, but Christ lives in me. Gal. 2:20
The Spirit is a force of freedom, a revealer of God’s wisdom and an offerer of love, the devil comes simply to steal, kill and destroy. May we walk bad voices right out the door, so the peace of God may walk in. Then, our temples will shine Christ far and wide.
I knew where I needed to go and I was laser-focused on my goal. I was running hard, pushing with the endurance and perseverance that God calls for, until…
…until I hit a little snag in the road. Until I started to feel like all the goodness I had been orchestrating with God was anything but that. Like the project at hand was really going to be the project that lost.
I started to say things to myself like:
I am going to fail. No one really cares about this goal. My progress is short-lived. God won’t help me This is going to stink.
If I have learned one thing, over my small life-span as a Christian, it is this: When the red flags of doubt and discouragement start waving, we can be sure that we stand on the starting line of the devil. He loves to send us off on a race of futility.
Where do you stand?
Are you listening to his mumbles, messages and mixed up words of defeat or are you listening to God’s powerful words of “I am with you?”
10 Things The Devil Doesn’t Want You To Know
(and what God does)
1. You must fight to win in this thing called life. Work hard and do your best and some day you may be good enough.
Truth: You already have the victory in Christ Jesus. Step out and act like you believe it.
They triumphed over him by the blood of the Lamb… Rev. 12:11
2. You have no identity. Find it in other things: work, men, partying, affairs, perfectionism, etc. If you can’t find it, there’s another way-simply, numb the feelings with suppression of feelings, food, alcohol, and drugs.
Truth: Your security in Christ’s plan is more stable than the cross that Jesus died on.
I have been crucified with Christ. It is no longer I who live,
but Christ who lives in me. Gal. 2:20
3. You are not forgiven. That thing will mark you forever.
Truth: The second you repent, your sins fall off of you faster than you can say “I can’t forgive myself.” Your sins are moved as far as the east is from the west, to the depths of the sea, where they are counted no more and where there is no charge against you.
If we confess our sins, he is faithful and just to forgive us our sins and
to cleanse us from all unrighteousness. 1 Jo. 1:9
4. God doesn’t guide people like you.He abandons the poor and powerless on the curb of unloved.
Truth: Sinners are God’s greatest calling.
I have not come to call the righteous, but sinners to repentance. Lu. 5:32
5. It’s fine if you know God’s Word, but you can’t know God’s love.Then your heart may take flight and seek to live it in all you do. Can’t have that!
Truth: There is no fear in love. Find love, find faith. Find love, find peace. Find love, find grace.
And now these three remain: faith, hope and love. But the greatest of these is love. 1 Cor. 13:13
6. It’s all about your needs. YOLO and FOMO rule!
You only live once (YOLO) so do whatever makes you feel good, no matter the cost.
Be fearful of missing out (FOMO). Overextend yourself so you can never overjoy your heart in the overflowing peace of God.
Truth: Moving at high speeds only serves to move us away from our first love.
For God alone, O my soul, wait in silence, for my hope is from him. Ps. 62:5
7. Walk by feelings, not by faith. Feelings make you feel good, so why not follow their leadings?
Truth: You can sidestep discouragement and despair by walking around feelings to solely stand on the rock of God’s promises. Believe only what God says about you and you will not be shaken.
The Rock! His work is perfect, For all His ways are just;
A God of faithfulness and without injustice, Righteous and upright is He. Deut. 32:4
8. Live in the past.Dwell on your pain, keep the band-aids of injured on, be angry, irritated and a hoarder of all the things and people that hurt you. Remember, so that you can live guarded, hardened and resistant to others.
Truth: Today is the only day we presently have. If we live in yesterday, we miss the gift of now, which is the only working ground for real life transformation.
Forget the former things; do not dwell on the past. Is. 43:18
9. Fear everything. Look at life as a catastrophe on the near verge of exploding death and to imploding your dreams. You will walk stifled and baffled at how you are getting nowhere. You will tread in the currents of failure and be no threat to me.
Truth: God is more with you than the hairs on your head.
Be strong and courageous. Do not be afraid or terrified because of them,
for the Lord your God goes with you; he will never leave you nor forsake you. Deut. 31:6
10. God saved you for eternity, but he doesn’t save on earth. God is only good for getting you through the heavenly gates, then you are stuck exposed, crazy and delusional in this dank and dark world. Good luck out there. I am coming to get you.
Truth: He will run to arm you with the protection of his love.
Because he holds fast to me in love, I will deliver him; I will protect him, because he knows my name. When he calls to me, I will answer him; I will be with him in trouble; I will rescue him and honor him. Ps. 91:14-15
Stand bold. Stand firm. Stand on truth. God always holds all power. He loves us and is our greatest advocate.
You intended to harm me, but God intended it for good to accomplish what is now being done, the saving of many lives. Gen. 50:20
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Do you really know it in a way that will guard you against the I-can’t-do-it moments?
I am beginning to know it in this way and it is making all the difference. I am beginning to see the small cracks in my armor.
I can’t do it. Crack.
I won’t succeed. Crack.
I am losing my abilities. Crack.
I won’t be blessed. Crack.
God’s calling is non-existent. Crack.
I have no purpose. Crack.
I will not be led, inspired, helped, released, forgiven. Crack.
I will never be good enough. Crack.
My deep crack was: I can’t write. God hasn’t called me to do this. He is no longer blessing my work. Underneath this crack, lived surface pressure: God won’t really be for you. He will leave you. Crack.
A crack is just enough for the devil’s foot to grab a hold of a heart.
A crack is just enough to forge a distance of space
between us and the God of our dreams.
A crack is just enough for a foothold of discouragement
to break down faithfulness.
A crack is just enough for him to start
ransacking our holy temples of God.
Which he loves to do. If he can penetrate a crack, he will perpetuate all problems. Days, turn into weeks, which turn into months, which turn into years and before you know it, the door to dejection is flung wide open. Suddenly, what you realize is that you are standing there vulnerable, naked, exposed and not sure where to run.
Unaddressed lies turn into a dressing of no protection that move us from armed by the power of truth to defeated by the cleverness of lies.
Make no mistake, the devil is a carnivore who delights in eating up anything resembling the temple of God. We don’t have to have four legs for him to take a bite of our flesh. We don’t have to be doing bad things to get chewed up and spit out by the one who hates us.
He wants to take our true, honest, just, pure, lovely, virtuous, and praiseworthy (Phil. 4:8) and make it fake, deceitful, unfair, desecrated, horrible, vile and condemnation-worthy.
When our thoughts move to unholy, we become unholy.The second dirty hands leave an imprint, we grow shame at their touching. The second he raises uncertainty, we become certain that God doesn’t love us anymore.
This happened to me. But then I saw it. I saw what changes it all, the way of flipping my heart back into God’s goodness.
Here is what I saw:
1.) An alone, uncertain and unsure 3rd grader. One who for the life of her could not read or write with the other kids. One who knew she would never succeed. One who would never learn. One who couldn’t progress. It’s no wonder she stayed back that year, she was a loser of a writer. The only comfort she lived with, besides her thumb-sucking habits, was the idea that she would always fail.
2.) A grown woman at the will of an abusing woman. An abusive woman who would rip up time-intensive writing works with an air of “how could you?” An abusive woman who was a nightmare by day and literally a nightmare by night. An abusive woman whose degrading and demoralizing taunts still haunt. A woman who caused an eager-to please employee long-lasting defeat, pain and fear of future criticism because her voice still resounds today.
3.) The devil is one who doesn’t give cause to our small cause, but one who goes after our big, audacious and wild causes for the Lord. He is one who, from day 1, has been trying to savor and steal the blessing the Lord has been baking and preparing our whole life. He is the one who never wants the timer of “ready” to ring and resound.
What has the Lord been baking
that the devil is hungry to burn?
What central lie, from day 1,
has the devil pounded over you to ensure you crack?
For me, he wanted to burn my belief that I could write, so that I never could write for the Lord.
What is it for you? It has likely been happening from the days of old and he will continue it through days of new if you let him.
He wants us handicapped. He wants us crippled. He wants us unable to walk towards real purpose, real value and real transformation. Jesus wants us free, full and ready to say, “This is my body, take and eat.”
The thief comes only to steal and kill and destroy. I came that they may have life and have it abundantly. Jo. 10:10
Jesus enters into our life to bring life – always and everyday. But, beware, we are being sent you out like sheep among wolves. Therefore we must be as shrewd as snakes and as innocent as doves (Mt. 10:16). Are you this way?
This means, if we are standing firm, we must be careful that we don’t fall (1 Cor. 10:12)! Are you ensuring your good standing before the Lord?
We must “see to it, brothers and sisters, that none of (us) has a sinful, unbelieving heart that turns away from the living God. (Heb. 3:12) Are you turning away as you analyze and consume yourself in the small cracks of your armor?
The cracks we cannot see, we cannot repair.
If you don’t want the tectonic plates of your life to shift beyond repair, the time is now to shift your view on all you have believed to be true your entire life.
What if I told you that as you walked outside there was a predator looming in your bushes? He not only wanted to take a bite of your skin, but entirely rip it off – savor it and devour it.
Sound creepy? Yes, I completely realize it does.
But, if this were the case, would you keep your eyes a little more open?
Might you look a little more left and right?
Prepare yourself in case of attack?
Might you do everything you could to find out who had the power to get rid of this creeper?
Of course you would.
But, do you?
Be sober-minded; be watchful. Your adversary the devil prowls around like a roaring lion, seeking someone to devour. 1 Pet. 5:8
Usually, we live more like busy-bodies than watch dogs.
We don’t look up – or around – we only look down – at our iPhones.
We look to our extensive to-do’s, rather than our exponential God.
Destination rules on high.
Feelings of worthlessness, uselessness and hopelessness often whip us around.
Meanwhile, we don’t see the abuser standing next to us.
He was a murderer from the beginning, not holding to the truth, for there is no truth in him. When he lies, he speaks his native language, for he is a liar and the father of lies. Jo. 8:44
When the devil lies, he often makes us lie down in defeat. Are you discerning is voice?
5 Lies the Devil Wants you To Believe (and you usually do)
1. God doesn’t really love you that much.
How could a god that big, love one who is so small?
Greater love has no one than this, that someone lay down his life for his friends. Jo. 15:3 God’s love is the only thing that is always permanent and always present.
2. Your scars of the past will always blind your eyes in shame (abortion, alcohol, depression, anger, mental issues, insecurity).
You messed up so bad, you’re marked as forever bad.
He heals the brokenhearted and binds up their wounds. Ps. 147:3 God doesn’t blind us with what we did wrong, he binds us up in what he did right.
3. You will be destroyed by your circumstances, your relationships and your trials.
That thing is going to take you down and ruin your life; you won’t be okay.
The Lord is on my side; I will not fear. What can man do to me? Ps. 118:6 If God is on your side, you are on the winning side – walk in His stride.
4. You deserve no trials.
A good god would never let you hit bad trials.
“I have told you these things, so that in me you may have peace. In this world you will have trouble. But take heart! I have overcome the world.” Jo. 16:33 Your good God knows bad trials will make you even better.
5. The bible doesn’t really say that. That would negatively impact your happy meter.
God wants all happy, happy, joy, joy feelings for you – go and get it (under breath: you spoiled little brat). Consume it – the world is your oyster.
And he said to all, “If anyone would come after me, let him deny himself and take up his cross daily and follow me. Lu. 9:23 God doesn’t say consume, he says exhume your ways and reassume his.
The devil almost always says, “God can’t – and you can’t – unless you can – with sin. The world will eat you up, the bible will fake you out and your past will kick you out of God’s purpose.”
The devil offers: same lie, different day.
But we have: the same God, everyday.
Our best defense is knowing God is on offense.
God is not human, that he should lie, not a human being, that he should change his mind. Does he speak and then not act? Does he promise and not fulfill? Nu. 23:19
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5 Ways to Fight the Tricks of the Devil
This past week, my eyes were on God, but it felt like my heart was being towed to Never Never Land. I didn’t want it go, but away it went. People, issues, problems, doubts, uncertainties and fears all came into sight, as my great God moved far from sight – into the horizon of peace, where I surely wasn’t.
Shame backfired in my heart, burning me with the thoughts, “You have issues. Big issues. God doesn’t value a girl like that. God has left you.”
Now we all know that these words aren’t true.
But in the moment, lies seem as true as the rabbit that magically appears out of the hat,
Sometimes, in order to see truth,
we have to take a different position to see the reality of what is happening.
Then we get a chance to shift our mindset from the destructive power of feelings
to God’s instructive hand of healing.
We begin to see:
“You stink” is really sent from one who wants us to sink.
“Not enough,” is an attempt by the great thief to replace Gods’ “more than enough”.
Utterances excluding grace are like shots of mace sent to blind our face.
The devil loves to use fear as the springboard to inadequacy. Because then, he can plunge us into the ocean of shame, if we don’t step off that mind-dizzying, nausea-inducing board of agony quick enough.
God never condones oceans of condemnation.
For God did not send his Son into the world to condemn the world, but in order that the world might be saved through him. John 3:17
Knowing Christ never condemns helps me see the one who always does.
I don’t want to be listening to his lies.
5 Ways to Drive out Lies and to Drive in God’s Truth
1. Determine which Father to serve. The father liar or Father God?
You are of your father the devil, and your will is to do your father’s desires…there is no truth in him. When he lies, he speaks out of his own character, for he is a liar and the father of lies.
When we acknowledge our wrong direction, we can finally get on the right one.
2. Let God take his rightful standing. God is higher than opposition, man or my feelings.
But he turned and said to Peter, “Get behind me, Satan! You are a hindrance to me. For you are not setting your mind on the things of God, but on the things of man.” Mt. 16:23
When we tell the devil to get back, we invite God to step forward.
3. Pledge allegiance to the one who has already claimed me. Allow the General of Love to rule over thoughts and actions.
I will no longer talk much with you, for the ruler of this world is coming.
He has no claim on me… Jo. 14:30
When we realize who has already claimed us, we also realize who has no claim on us.
4. Get low to grow. So I don’t have a hard go.
Submit yourselves, then, to God. Resist the devil, and he will flee from you. Ja. 4:7
Submission leaves no permission for the devil to enter in. He flees.
5. Recognize: what God sees goes much farther than me.
“For my thoughts are not your thoughts, neither are your ways my ways,”
declares the LORD. Is. 55:8
The vantage point of God is all-knowing, all-powerful and just-right. His will will be done. We can fight by our might or let go by his will. The choice is ours.
God is always waiting for us. His truth will always set us free.
As we break down God’s truth,
lies break down, leaving space for God to breakthrough.
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