I’ve been slapped in the face with that fact this week, and it took me a while to remember that. I’ve been negligent about praying for protection of some very important relationships, thus lulled into lethargy about it. I’ve bought into the “it’s not me, it’s them” mentality, unable to see the big ole plank in my eye, and quick to think I have the right to be offended, hurt and that I’m right and they’re wrong, etc. And this morning, I had a revelation about it.
This week, I’ve experienced major conflict and discord within important relationships: family, work and a vital team at church – the pastoral search committee. ALL THIS WEEK! Coincidence? I’m thinking there’s a praise in there. I’m thinking we MUST BE CLOSE to doing God’s will in the committee. I’m thinking the enemy is trying to stir up trouble, not only there, but within our personal lives, to distract us. To crush us. To discourage us. To steal and kill and destroy.
After I thought about that this morning, I opened an email devotional & guess what I found for today? I just LOVE it when God gives me a GC!
Below is the actual devotional and this is the link: http://www.ransomedheart.com/daily-reading/we-are-war
The thief comes only to steal and kill and destroy; I have come that they may have life, and have it to the full. (John 10:10)Have you ever wondered why Jesus married those two statements? Did you even know he spoke them at the same time? I mean, he says them in one breath. And he has his reasons. By all means, God intends life for you. But right now that life is opposed. It doesn’t just roll in on a tray. There is a thief. He comes to steal and kill and destroy. Why won’t we face this? I know so few people who will face this. The offer is life, but you’re going to have to fight for it, because there’s an Enemy in your life with a different agenda.
There is something set against us.
We are at war.
I don’t like that fact any more than you do, but the sooner we come to terms with it, the better hope we have of making it through to the life we do want. This is not Eden. You probably figured that out. This is not Mayberry, this is not Seinfeld’s world, this is not Survivor. The world in which we live is a combat zone, a violent clash of kingdoms, a bitter struggle unto the death. I am sorry if I’m the one to break this news to you: you were born into a world at war, and you will live all your days in the midst of a great battle, involving all the forces of heaven and hell and played out here on earth.
Where did you think all this opposition was coming from?
Lord, You are so amazing. Thank you for your infinite grace, mercy, love and patience for your “stiff-necked people.” Forgive me for my oblivion to the snares of the enemy and my heart being shut to extending that same grace, mercy, love and patience to my brothers and sisters that you’ve extended to me. Thank you for showing me the plank in my eye. I ask that you send your angels to fight this battle against principalities, against powers, against the rulers of the darkness of this world, against spiritual wickedness in high places. Protect our relationships with each other from discord and by the authority in Christ, help us to fight and flee the accuser of the brethren. May the words of our mouths and the meditation of our hearts be pleasing in your sight, O Lord, our Rock and Our Redeemer. Amen.