In Step with the Spirit

Raise your hand if you’re a planner. Anyone out there like to be organized and know what’s going to happen next? Even if you’re more laid back and “go with the flow,” many of us don’t like surprises. Even little ones. But if we want to walk in the Spirit, we need to stay flexible. That’s where the excitement is!

Listen to His Voice

Isaiah 30:21 describes the blessing of being led by the Spirit. “Whether you turn to the right or to the left, your ears will hear a voice behind you, saying, ‘This is the way; walk in it’.” I love God’s direction and knowing I’m doing what He wants me to do. But sometimes we start the day with a plan–a good plan, nothing wrong with it–and then the Holy Spirit puts a person on our heart and we feel a strong urge to call him. Even if talking on the phone isn’t our favorite thing (“Can I just text him, Lord?”) we need to respond right away.

Sometimes, we lose time second-guessing and procrastinating. When we know the thought wasn’t from our own thoughts or plans, and the direction is in keeping with His Word and character, we can know it’s Him and should move forward right away.

Did I Hear That Right?

Sometimes the Holy Spirit speaks to us and what He’s asking us to do makes us say, “Was that really you, Lord?” What we really mean is, “I really hope that wasn’t You, Lord! Do I have to?” But the blessing is in obedience.

If we’re standing in line at the grocery store and we feel like we should speak to the person next to us and ask how their day is going when we wouldn’t normally do that, it’s probably the Holy Spirit. We tend to panic and worry that God is going to ask us to jump up and down and make monkey sounds. Really? He’s going to ask us to spread His love and His life. And yes, it may be a little nerve-wracking to speak up and ask someone if we can pray with her, but it’s always worth it.

Planting Seeds

I had the opportunity to make a last-minute, surprise trip to CA this week. On my second flight, I was sitting next to a lovely, professional woman. We had chatted a bit and when we were getting close to landing, I wanted to tell her how God healed me of motion sickness. I felt like the Holy Spirit was confirming that I was supposed to do that. So I told her that I used to get sick every time I flew, but that on one trip God completely healed me and it was the best miracle ever! She looked right at me and asked me what I did. Did I just pray? So I was able to tell her more about it. She said that was cool and that was it. So glad I spoke up. I was planting seeds. One plants, another waters… I Cor. 3:8. We just obey. The results are up to the Lord.

Lifestyle of the Spirit

Sometimes we get away from that lifestyle of being ready for the Holy Spirit to speak to us at any time. We forget to keep an ear open for Him to speak to us and to keep ourselves in an attitude of willingness to change our plans and to obey. But that is easy to re-align. We just need to turn our heart toward heaven and ask the Holy Spirit to work through us. We just need to be willing. “Since we live by the Spirit, let us keep in step with the Spirit” (Gal. 5:25.)

It’s a wonderful feeling to know you’ve heard and obeyed the Lord and that He’s working through you to show His love to someone. Ask the Lord to give you a special person assignment today!

When was the last time you did something at the Holy Spirit’s urging?

Spiritual Warfare: The Word, Our Weapon

Sword & Shield SmallIf you and I lived in a different time and we woke up in a tent on the hard ground in the middle of a vast encampment of soldiers and were told to get ready because today was the day of battle, we would jump up and scramble to find our armor and most importantly, our sword. There’s no way we would leave our weapon behind.

Do We Leave Our Weapon Behind?

Our weapon in spiritual warfare is the Bible, the Word of God, but sometimes we head out the front door and into our day and we leave it behind. Not that we have to physically carry a Bible with us at all times (although if it’s on our phone or tablet, it is with us!) but we need to be hiding God’s Word in our heart so we are ready to use it in battle. Which means, we need to be reading it every day.

Even though we may agree with this concept or even deeply believe it, it’s so easy to have days slip by without reading the Word. Our lives are busy and we have a flood of incoming information every day. Sometimes it’s that flood that crowds out what we really need to be taking in: our best defense against the enemy in times of trial or temptation.

Our Spiritual Defense

We have the same spiritual defense that Jesus had. He is our example and He withstood the most vicious assault of temptation ever loosed on a man. (Matt. 4:1-11.) Jesus had been fasting for 40 days. He was at the end of that fast and He was hungry. His body was ready to eat. That’s when the enemy came to tempt Him, at a very weak physical point. Satan tempted him with three powerful temptations (including food!) but Jesus replied every time with one weapon and one weapon only: the Word of God. He quoted Scripture to the devil and the devil had no reply. Three tries and the devil left Him. Jesus had won!

Read the Word

What if Jesus had not studied the Word? He didn’t arrive on the earth with all the Scriptures that had been written to that point downloaded and stored in His mind just because He came from heaven and was the Son of God. He started out as a baby, just like us, and had to learn the Scriptures, just like us. He knew the verses He quoted to the devil because He studied ahead of time. He memorized them. He went to the synagogue. On one trip to Jerusalem, Jesus stayed in the temple so long “sitting among the teachers, listening to them and asking them questions,” that his parents left for home and didn’t realize he wasn’t with them! (Luke 2:41-52)

We need to be reading the Word of God and studying it as well. We especially need to be memorizing it. Bible verses are like arrows that we need to have ready to pull out and fire at a moment’s notice. They are like every swing, every thrust and jab, of a sword in battle.

Weapons!

If we are afraid, we remember II Tim. 1:7, “For God has not given us a spirit of fear, but of power and of love and of a sound mind.”

If we need forgiveness, we know that, “If we confess our sins, he is faithful and just to forgive us our sins and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness,” according to I John 1:9.

If we are anxious, we remember Isaiah 26:3, “You will keep in perfect peace all who trust in you, all whose thoughts are fixed on you.”

If we are tempted, we know that “No temptation has overtaken you except what is common to mankind. And God is faithful; he will not let you be tempted beyond what you can bear. But when you are tempted, he will also provide a way out so that you can endure it,” (I Cor. 10:13.) Then, we take the way out!

If we need encouragement that we will overcome the enemy and have victory:

“For the Lord your God is the one who goes with you to fight for you against your enemies to give you victory.” Duet. 20:4

“With God we will gain the victory, and he will trample down our enemies.” Psalm 108:13

“But thanks be to God! He gives us the victory through our Lord Jesus Christ.” (I Cor. 5:7)

Whether we  have been studying the Bible our whole life or if we met Jesus yesterday, each of us need to be in the Word every day. We need to be reading and learning more. We need to meditate and memorize, so we already know the verses we need to use in the heat of battle to reply to any accusation or attack or temptation of the enemy. For with our God and with His weapons, our victory is sure.

Can I get an “Amen?”

It’s Not Too Late: To Begin

Alarm clock on glass tableIt’s Friday. Do you ever get to Friday and think, “Well, it’s the end of the week. I can’t get that much done now. It’s too late.” Actually, (you may not want to hear this!) Friday is just as good as Monday. It just doesn’t feel like it because our mind is already headed toward the weekend. And often, we’re tired from the four days that came before Friday. However, if we change our mindset (and find some caffeine!) we can accomplish plenty, even on Friday. Sometimes, we get that “it’s too late” mentality about other areas of our lives too.

For example, is there something in life that you want to do or accomplish, but you haven’t made it happen yet? You’ve tried. And failed. And tried again. And failed. And given up. And tried again. Or maybe you haven’t failed yet because you haven’t tried yet. Ever feel like you’re going in circles and not making any real progress? We all have things like this — or maybe it’s just me. (I hope it’s not just me!)

The Unfulfilled Desire

Many things can fit into this category. Perhaps you have a project you want to tackle, but just can’t get it done. Perhaps you want to develop more patience or kindness and then find yourself snapping under pressure. Maybe there’s an advancement in your career you want to make that hasn’t happened yet. Perhaps it’s that fitness or weight goal that is so elusive. Maybe you want to write a blog, but after a few posts, life gets in the way or you get sick and are unable to be consistent. Oh wait, that’s me again.😉

No matter what it is, I’m here to remind you — it’s not too late to begin again. It’s not too late to try again. You can accomplish what you set out to do. You have only to begin. Or begin again. After all, you are reading this blog right now, right? There’s “living proof” for you. Just be willing to try again. And then start. Take the first step. And the next. And the next. Over and over.

The Key to Success

Persistence is the key. Many have talent, but persistence is the difference between potential and success. Persistence is to continue on a course of action in spite of difficulty, opposition or previous failure. The Bible puts it this way, “Let us not become weary in doing good, for at the proper time we will reap a harvest if we do not give up” (Gal. 6:9.)

We must not give up. If we have given up, we can begin anew. Get back to planting the seeds that will bring about the harvest we desire. We are planting seeds into our life and future every day. Let’s make sure it’s the right seed. The time to start again is right now.

Today.

What step will you take today to “begin again?”

Spiritual Warfare: Faithful in Trial

Sword & Shield SmallNothing pulls us to prayer faster than crisis. As it should. And these days, it seems there are so many difficult situations to take before the Lord. It is a critical time in the lives of our loved ones and in the life of our nation. As the return of Jesus draws ever closer, we will see an increase in pressure, problems, even persecution. The Bible tells us that clearly. (Matt. 24)

Maybe it’s just where I live and the people I know, but there are many who feel they are under an attack from the enemy. And that does happen. It is not our imagination. The enemy comes to “steal, kill and destroy,” (John 10:10.) He also comes to distract and draw off course. He comes to tempt, for sin will destroy us as sure as a deadly disease. The enemy will try anything to weaken our faith, to cause us to question God’s goodness, anything to get us to turn away from our Lord.

Satan’s Motivation

Remember Job? Satan’s motivation is revealed to us in this story. Satan, speaking of Job, says to the Lord, “But stretch out your hand and strike everything he has, and he will surely curse you to your face,” (Job 1:11.) When that didn’t work and Job, by God’s own testimony, “maintained his integrity,” (Job 2:3) Satan wanted to try again. “But stretch out your hand and strike his flesh and bones, and he will surely curse you to your face,” (Job 2:5.)

Satan wanted God to take everything away from Job and to put him in physical agony just so that Job would turn away from God and stop serving and loving Him. Satan wanted Job to curse God to his face. He wanted Job to strike out against God in anger and rebellion and to sever their relationship. Job didn’t do that. Job clung to his knowledge of God in faith. God, in return, used the situation to teach Job, bringing him even deeper in his knowledge of God and then healed him and blessed his life twice as much. (Job 42:10.)

Faithful Under Attack

In the midst of our trials, we need to remember Job. We need to remember that it is Satan who wants us to turn away from God in doubt. We must remember to always turn TO the Lord and never away. We must remember that John 10:10 does not end with the thief coming to steal and kill and destroy. Jesus Himself was speaking and He said, “I have come that they may have life and have it to the full.”

When we are under attack and are suffering loss or suffering in our body, we need to be like Job and remain faithful to God, refusing to turn and curse Him. Instead, we remain faithful in our love for Him. Faithful in trusting Him. Faithful in prayer. I saw someone post on Facebook recently that she didn’t understand God’s plan for her life, but she loved Him still. That is a beautiful statement of faith. We have to remember that while God may have allowed this trial to come, He is with us and He will bring us through it. If we will trust Him, we will come out stronger and twice as blessed.

In Light of Eternity

IMG_0707_2I was listening to one of my favorite songs the other day, “Lose My Soul” by TobyMac, featuring Kirk Franklin and Mandisa. I was singing along with Mandisa and the phrase, “Livin’ in the light of eternity” stuck with me. I’ve always loved that turn of phrase. It holds such a huge concept in a single line: live for eternity.

Life Priority Check

Live in the light of eternity … eternity in their hearts (Ecc. 3:11.) These words remind us to live for more than the here and now. It’s easy to get caught up in our daily needs, burdens and concerns, but there is more ahead, friends. So much more.

You can watch the news and see our world spinning ever closer to the return of Christ, with catastrophe and chaos along the way. This is the perfect time to perform a “systems check” on our lives. What does the way we spend our time and money say about our priorities?

Are we living for the here and now? For our self alone? Or are we focusing on what really matters? To make sure we “love the Lord our God with all our heart, soul, mind and strength.” To remember to “love our neighbor as our self” and to show the world we are Christians by our love. Do we consciously give our families the best of us and show the fruit of the Spirit at home? Are we finding ways to make the lives of others better? Notice that these are all actions we take …

Eternal Actions: Outward & Inward

… Because living for eternity doesn’t mean sitting around and waiting for the Lord to come and take us to heaven. It isn’t only about deepening our spiritual life and our prayer life. That’s certainly part of it, but when we draw closer to the Lord in prayer, we will find He then compels us to show His love in very practical ways to those around us. “Religion that God our Father accepts as pure and faultless is this: to look after orphans and widows in their distress and to keep oneself from being polluted by the world” (James 1:27.) There is no shortage of orphans and widows. There are so many homes with only one parent. So many kids find themselves alone. So many need support and not only financial. So many people need a friend, an afternoon out, a ride to church.

The second half of that verse, “to keep oneself form being polluted by the world” is a tall order these days as our society reaches a saturation point of sin. We have to take a sober look at how much is seeping into our hearts and minds through the music and media we absorb. We have to be careful to not “call evil good and good evil” (Isaiah 5:20) but to align our hearts and minds with the Word of God and what He says to be true.

A Life that Lasts

If we want to live a life that lasts, if we want our works to live on and to not be burned up as worthless at the judgment (I Cor. 3:12,13), then we need to be sure we are living for the right things and that we are doing the right things. Time is short. The Lord is coming soon.

“And what does the Lord require of you? To act justly and to love mercy and to walk humbly with your God” (Micah 6:8.)

I know I have some things to work on. What does your “Light of Eternity Systems Check” tell you?

Spiritual Warfare: Stand Firm

Sword & Shield SmallEver have days when you’re so tired you feel you’re dragging yourself through the day? Ever face a situation that seemed so long and difficult you felt you were dragging yourself through life?

When Will It Change?

Sometimes when we feel we are treading water (or maybe going under for the third time!), we are not really drowning; we just need a breakthrough. When we feel we are in a holding pattern, and an unpleasant one at that, we need to remember that we are only walking through an in-between season; the season between “the now” and “the not yet.”

The situation will change; it just hasn’t yet. The victory will come; it just hasn’t arrived yet. It’s like when the angel was sent right away with the answer Daniel prayed for, but it took 21 days for the angel to battle through enemy forces to get to Daniel. (Story found in Daniel 10.) We need to remember we are not stuck; we are patiently waiting on the Lord and His timing. Better yet, we are actively waiting in faith to see how the Lord is moving on our behalf.

Stand in Faith

When we are in these places of waiting for victory, we must not become complacent and think there is nothing we can do in this battle. Persevering is doing something. Waiting in faith and faithfully waiting is doing something. “Therefore put on the full armor of God, so that when the day of evil comes, you may be able to stand your ground, and after you have done everything, to stand,” (Eph. 6:13.) Standing our ground is doing something. We stand on the promises of God and we are not moved. We stand. We persevere. We keep putting one foot in front of the other. We do not give up.

“Let us not become weary in doing good, for at the proper time we will reap a harvest if we do not give up,” (Gal. 6:9.) To persevere means to “continue in a course of action even in the face of difficulty.”  We must not become weary, but we must keep on. For the victory will come, the harvest will peak.

Stand Your Ground

If you feel like it’s all you can do to hang on, that’s ok. Just hang on and believe. Trust and obey. Keep going. If you feel like all you can do is stand, that is enough. Stand firm then in your faith. Persevering. Getting up, putting one foot in front of the other, asking the Lord to help you and believing that He will, is spiritual warfare too.

Stand firm. The answer is on its way.

 

What is the breakthrough you are waiting in faith for today?

Spiritual Warfare: Time to Pray! –Pt. 1

DesperateA young father came home from work one day exhausted. Nothing had gone right at the office, his boss was angry, and there was an accident on the freeway making him late for dinner. At the table, he told his wife and two kids about how his project at work wasn’t coming together the way it should. Suddenly, his five-year-old daughter put down her fork and put her hand on his arm. She looked up at him with big serious eyes and said, “Did you pray about it, Daddy?”  That stopped him in his tracks. No, he hadn’t. He hadn’t done the most obvious thing in the world.

Remember to Pray

Prayer is the heart of spiritual warfare. It seems obvious, but the first thing to remember is to pray. Sometimes it’s easy to talk about how we’re under an attack of the enemy. (As someone once said, “Well, what are you doing under there?!”) It’s easy to think about all the things that aren’t going right, but we forget to pray! (For more on thinking versus praying, go here.) A great place to start in prayer is with praise. We talked about this when we started this series back in November with “Spiritual Weapons: Praise.” Praise and worship are powerful. Taking time to exalt the Lord gets our eyes on Him and on His power.

In Jesus’ Name

As we move into praying specifically to break any chains of the enemy, we need to always remember that we pray “in Jesus’ Name.” We have no power on our own. We always stand under the umbrella of the authority of Jesus. Our Lord Jesus, who was born of a virgin, crucified on a cross for our sins and raised from the dead to life by the power of God, is the One with all the power.

By Faith in the Name

Peter spoke and healed people by the authority of Jesus name in Acts 3. He came by a lame man who was crippled from birth. Peter said to him, “In the name of Jesus Christ of Nazareth, walk” (Act. 3:6b.) The man stood up and walked. Later, talking about this miracle, Peter said, “By faith in the name of Jesus, this man whom you see and know was made strong. It is Jesus’ name and the faith that comes through him that has completely healed him, as you can all see,” (Acts 3:16.)

Great explanation, Peter!😉 Notice he didn’t say, “Because I am Peter and I walked with Jesus, I was able to heal you myself.” Um … no. In the same way, just because we are Christians and we know that Lord doesn’t mean we can work miracles ourselves or that we can make Satan vacate the premises ourselves. “It is Jesus’ name and the faith that comes through him…”

By Faith in His Power

Notice it’s not that Jesus’ Name is a good luck charm or the magic word. The name of Jesus is not a talisman of any kind. It’s not like, as long as you say that when you pray, you can make things come true. See the difference in that statement? We do not make things happen. We are submitted to God’s will in prayer and we are really declaring His power over the enemy that He has already defeated.

I often pray something like this: “In Jesus name, I stand against the enemy and I cast down all of his works. Anything he would bring against me, I completely destroy. I will not accept this attack on (fill in the blank!) my body, my marriage, my family, my bank account, my career, etc. By the power of the blood of Jesus, I command him to be gone! He has no place in my life. I am a child of God and I walk in His ways. I am forgiven and the Bible says, ‘No weapon formed against me will prosper,’ so I call this attempt to derail me, ‘Done!’ In Jesus Name, Amen.”

This is taking a stand against the enemy in prayer and in Jesus’ Name. We need to pray! We need to pray about everything and we need to pray specifically. The Lord is ready and waiting to answer our prayers.

For a three-minute video on asking the Lord for what we need, join me on my YouTube channel here.

For an amazing song by Darlene Zschech called “In Jesus Name,” click here.

Take a stand against the enemy this week. In prayer. In Jesus Name. Amen!

His Grace is Enough

Cross on Flowered Hill SmallStress? What Stress?

I used to go to my chiropractor “all crinkled up.” (He called it subluxated. Whatever.) He would ask me if my stress level was high. If I said, “Yes,” he would then ask, “Is it going to get better?”

Great question. Sometimes we are in a specific situation that is short term and will resolve itself, such as the pressure of taking a test or a job interview. But sometimes we are in a situation that is more long term, such as when the stress is coming from dealing with a chronic illness or a strained relationship. It’s especially difficult if the situation is out of your control and you are powerless to change it.

The Long Term Situation

As many of you know, my awesome husband works in North Dakota. (We do not live in North Dakota!) And we are blessed. His schedule is two weeks on and one week off. So he is home for five days every two weeks. That’s a good rotation for someone who works in the oil field.

He’s been going over there to work for two years already. The Lord’s grace for me in this situation has been amazing. It’s hard to have him gone. It’s hard for him to go. We really like each other!😉 That’s why we got married. We aren’t one of those couples who needs space and time away from each other. We really like being together all the time. Even though it’s not easy, I’ve been mostly ok with it. Until last Fall…

Wait! I’m All Done…

All of a sudden, I wasn’t ok with it anymore. I had this terrible feeling like, “Oh no! What if I can’t handle this anymore? What then?” I cried more. I was more lonely. I was anxious and more panicky. I had to be ok with this. I couldn’t change it.

Then, I remembered. … His grace. His grace is enough. Oh, that’s right. Breathe. (In and out!) The Lord brought to my mind a two-step process for difficult, long-term situations.

The Two Step Reset

First of all, count our blessings. There are so many things to be thankful for regarding Scott’s job. As I mentioned, his rotation is one of the best. His company flies him back and forth so he doesn’t even has to make the ten-hour drive every two weeks. His salary and a truly great benefits package. Fulfilling work, a good crew, opportunity for advancement, God’s favor. Plus, he gets vacation time and it’s like a five-day weekend every time he comes home. And he is always home over a weekend so he gets to go to church. Many things!

I needed to focus on the positive. Look at all the good things about this. And give thanks for them. Count those blessings!

Second step is to remember that His grace is enough. “But he said to me, ‘My grace is sufficient for you’,” (II Cor. 12:9.) This is the Lord saying, “You’re ok. I’ve got this. And I’m in you, so you’ve got this.” I was able to tell myself, “His grace is enough. I have all the strength I need to deal with this. I am ok.” And you know what? My feelings came back in line and I felt much better. I didn’t need to worry that I couldn’t do this long-term. I can do this for however long God has ordained this situation and season to be because He gives me the strength.

Hope & Strength

It’s still hard. It was an adjustment again after Christmas when my son went back to college and Scott went back to work after some vacation time. I was by myself again, which is still so weird. There may have been some tears when I took him to the airport. But I know what to do now. Count blessings. Rely on God’s grace.

And so can you. If you’re facing a long-term situation that you wish you could change, but you can’t, follow these two steps to peace and joy. Count your blessings. Walk in His grace. Amen!

Is there a difficult long-term situation you are facing today?

Spiritual Warfare: Open Our Eyes

Sword & Shield SmallAn amazing story takes place in II Kings 6:8-22. The king of Aram was trying to attack the king of Israel’s territory. But the prophet Elisha kept warning the king of Israel where the attacks would come. The king of Aram became so frustrated, he asked his men if one of them was a spy. They told him the problem was the prophet Elisha who knew their every move. So the king of Aram sent his army to capture Elisha.

What a Sight!

Elisha’s servant stepped out the front door onto the porch one day, probably to get the morning paper, and was surprised to see an army surrounding the city. He was, understandably, afraid. He asked the prophet what they should do. But Elisha said, “Don’t be afraid … Those who are with us are more than those who are with them.”

Spiritual Vision

I wonder if the servant looked around and then gave Elisha a look that said, “Dude, there’s only two of us!” Because the next thing Elisha did was to pray. “Open his eyes, Lord, so that he may see.” And then! “…the Lord opened the servant’s eyes, and he looked and saw the hills full of horses and chariots of fire all around Elisha.” And God gave Elisha great victory over that entire army that day.

We talked last week about needing to acknowledge that we have an enemy, but knowing we have the victory. We need to ask the Lord to open our eyes to both. We need to be able to see when and where the enemy is at work, but we must always be firmly rooted in the fact that, “Those who are with us are more than those who are with them.”

Focus

I talked to a lady once who was in love with the enemy. Truly. She didn’t realize that at the time, but all she wanted to talk about was the enemy and his work. She wanted to tell me about all the different times she had been attacked by him and times she had seen demons, etc. Never once did she talk about the Lord and His power.

We are not in a relationship with the enemy. We are in a relationship with Jesus Christ, who has already defeated the enemy. Even when we find ourselves in spiritual warfare, either standing against the enemy or declaring the victory in worship or battling in prayer for someone’s salvation, we keep our eyes on the Lord. We focus on the work He wants to do and the fact that He has the power to do it. We are merely partnering with Him.

God’s Army

So, before we look at the weapons of warfare God has given us, such as the armor and prayer and fasting and the Word, we need to clear. We need to ask the Lord to give us sight like Elisha. He received wisdom from the Lord regarding the enemy’s attacks, but he wasn’t afraid. He knew he was serving in the greatest army of all. And so are we.

Was there a time the Lord gave you supernatural insight into the spiritual battle behind a situation?

 

Spiritual Warfare: Basics

Sword & Shield SmallBack in November, I posted about “Spiritual Weapons: Praise”  and I wanted to continue on this topic with some more thoughts about spiritual warfare. So, I’m going to post about this on Fridays for awhile. I hope you’ll join me!

I’m really blessed because I’ve grown up with a knowledge of spiritual warfare. I’ve heard a lot of teaching on it, read some excellent books and have had a fair amount of my own experience in it. But the concept of spiritual warfare is new to many people, even some who have been in the church for years.

Satan is Real

The fact is we have an enemy. This is a reality that can’t and shouldn’t be ignored. We don’t need to be afraid of him; he is defeated by the cross of Christ. But he does exist. The Bible says, “Be alert and of sober mind. Your enemy the devil prowls about like a roaring lion looking for someone to devour,” (I Peter 5:8.) And we know from John 10:10 that, “the thief comes only to steal and kill and destroy;”

The Enemy’s Plans

Satan hates God’s children and he doesn’t want anyone to go to heaven. This means he is going to cause death and destruction whenever he can. He is going to pull people away from God however he can. He is going to try to discourage the saints and get their eyes off God. His ultimate goal is that we would turn away from the Lord and call Him unfaithful. That’s what he tried to accomplish with Job, but he failed miserably. Satan took (with God’s permission) everything from Job and even afflicted his body, but Job would not turn away from the Lord. This is what we are up against.

The Enemy Defeated!

Now, the good news. Satan is already defeated by the cross of Christ and the blood that Jesus shed for us. “He forgave us all our sins, having canceled the charge of our legal indebtedness, which stood against us and condemned us; he has taken it away, nailing it to the cross. And having disarmed the powers and authorities, he made a public spectacle of them, triumphing over them by the cross,” (Colossians 2:13b-15.) Satan is defeated in that now there is a way for anyone to come to God through Jesus, but the battle still goes on for the souls of all people. In the end, Satan will be completely vanquished and banished from the earth, but for now, we need to know our enemy and yet operate in the victory God has for us.

Our Victory is Real

We do not need to fall for Satan’s tricks or temptations. We do not need to be discouraged when it seems he is at work. We must remember this:  “You, dear children, are from God and have overcome them, because the one who is in you is greater than the one who is in the world,” (I John 4:4, italics mine.) That’s right. The Lord who dwells in us is SO much greater than any evil spirit in this world. Our victory is sure. But we must stand up and claim that victory in a daily basis. We must remember that it is ours. We must remember to walk by God’s principles and not the world’s because that’s where the victory is found. So, let’s thank God that He is in us and He is greater than the enemy. Let’s focus on Him and give Him praise and ask Him to help us grow in our ability to prevail in the midst of spiritual warfare!

Can you think of a time when you knew you were in a battle against the enemy? Would you share it with us?


  • Hi, I'm Erica ~ a wife, a mom, a Christian speaker, singer, author, and worship leader. I love coffee & chocolate, reading & writing, music & more music, Facebook & Twitter, time with family & friends! Thanks for dropping by ~ I hope you are encouraged here.

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