Usually I save the "punch line" or the clincher for the end of my post, but this is so important that I want to give it to you at the beginning. If you take away nothing else from this post, know this:
The enemy is real
The enemy has many calling cards and flaming arrows. Some of his favorites are guilt, shame, fear, hopelessness, doubt, isolation, anxiety...
Thoughts and feelings lie
Just because we feel or think something doesn't make it true. If you are experiencing any of the above...
It's not from God...you are under the attack of the enemy and what he is telling you is a LIE!!!!!
How do I know this? Because I've been there...many times. The Bible tells me that this is no small skirmish. In fact, there's an epic battle going on not just here on earth but in the heavens. Good vs. Evil. Truth vs. Lies. Jesus vs. Enemy.
The Good News is that we know Jesus wins!!
In the meantime, let's uncover some of the enemy's lies. Perhaps one or more of these will hit home? Then, let's debunk it with the Truth.
* I'm not good enough...Not true. Your identity is found in Christ. God sees you through the blood of His Son. God sees you as pure as snow.
Romans 3:23 - For ALL have sinned and fall short of the glory of God, and (ALL who believe) are justified freely by His grace through the redemption that is in Christ Jesus.
* Everyone has it all together except me (isolation)...Not true. The Bible says that the enemy prowls about looking to seek, isolate, and destroy. If he can pull you apart from the herd and get you alone, you are easy prey. No one has it all together. Friend, if they say or act like they do...well they're either lying or deluding themselves.
* God is angry or disappointed in me...Not true. Nowhere in the Bible does it ever say that God is disappointed in us. I challenge you to find it in there because it simply doesn't exist. It's a lie. We mess up and we sin, but God's got that covered.
Romans 8:1-2 - Therefore there is now NO CONDEMNATION for those who are in Christ Jesus. For in Christ Jesus the law of the Spirit of life has set you free from the law of sin and death.
* You are alone...Not true. The enemy wants you to think you are alone. Over and over again Jesus reminds us "Never will I leave you...Never will I forsake you...NEVER" (emphasis mine).
* You or the situation is hopeless...Not true. In the 23rd Psalm, Jesus says He walks WITH us THROUGH the valley of the shadow of death. He promises that He will lead us safely to the other side. He won't leave us stuck there.
More than any other subject in the Bible, Jesus talks about the Kingdom of Heaven. Why? Because He knows if we can just hang in there, the Kingdom Heaven awaits us and it will be something far greater than we can ever imagine.
It will be worth the wait. We will be free FOREVER of the chains that bind us. But, while we walk through this blink of an eye life here on earth....He will walk with us and give us His peace.
It is said that the enemy will find our Achilles' heel (our weakness) and attack us there. I've experienced this to be true. I struggle with OCD and depression. Boy, you better believe that the hungry enemy smells blood when it (OCD) flares. When I'm having an episode, the enemy uses that time to kick me when I'm down.
It is truly hard to cling to the Truth when I am laid so low. That's when I need others to surround me and remind me that even though I may not be able to "feel" it or "believe" it at the moment, God's Truths are FACTS.
If you are ever feeling under attack. Ask a friend, "Do you ever think _______? Do you ever feel _________? See what they say and ask them to share the Truth with you. We find strength when we corporately cling to the truth. There IS power in numbers.
Also, Priscilla Shirer (Christian author and speaker) made a powerful statement when she said, "The attacks on our lives are more about who the enemy believes we can become than who we are right now."
Another writer, Holley Gerth, spoke of a light bulb coming on when she suddenly realized that the enemy is lying to us in the area of our giftings.
This really blew me away. But, it makes sense. If the enemy knows we are strong in a particular area, he is going to stop at nothing to render us powerless in the area of our strength.
He will throw his strongest lie...his hottest flaming arrow at our area of giftedness because that is where we threaten him the most.
I believe that is why some of the strongest Christians I know are under the greatest attacks. Why? Because they are a threat to the enemy. If we're not about spreading the gospel, building the Kingdom, sharing the light and hope of Jesus Christ, then we're not much of a threat and chances are the enemy will leave us alone.
Hmmmm.....so the key is recognizing that you are under attack. Some red flag questions I'm learning to ask myself are:
1. Does it (feeling or thought) make me feel anxious?
2. Does it make me feel fearful?
3. Does it bring with it any other negative feelings (shame, guilt, any feelings of being "less than" or "not enough" of something?
If so....In Christ's name, call it what it is....a big, old, fat LIE!
I felt strange at first, but I have learned to say, out loud, when I feel like I'm under attack, "Get behind me Satan. In the power of my Lord and Savior Jesus Christ, I command you to flee from me and leave me alone!"
1. The enemy can't read our mind (like Jesus can) but he can hear my words.
2. The Bible says, at the name of Jesus, the enemy must flee.
Okay. Go back and read the beginning of my post again. Take in that all that negativity is a bunch of lies. If thoughts plague you try not to argue with them, roll them around in your mind and contemplate them....NO, you have permission to slam the door on them - like you would an intruder trying to come in your front door. Not in your own power, but in the power that comes from calling upon the name of Jesus.
Dear Heavenly Father, forgive me for when I've let the enemy get a foothold in my thought life, but I praise you that you are mindful of my frame and know what these attacks do to me. You are a God who sees and understands what I'm up against. Give me wisdom and discernment to know when thoughts are simply not from you, but are the work of the enemy. Give me the shield of faith and truth, with which, I can extinguish the flaming (lying) arrows of the enemy. Remind me to call upon the power found in the name and person of Jesus. At His name the enemy must turn and flee. Help me to be in your Word so that when the enemy hits me with his lies (which he will), I can uncover them with your Truth. Be with me Lord...I need you. In Jesus precious name I pray. Amen.
ps. Praise and Good News...Redeemer Christian Foundation, Inc. has an anonymous corporate sponsor who will donate $10 for every person who joins the private RCF, Inc. Facebook Page UP TO 300 PEOPLE OR $3,000!!
Here's how you can help.
1. If you haven't already, Friend me on Facebook (Beverly Senter Rihtarchik)
2. Message me "Add me" and I will add you to our page and $10 will go into RCF's bank account. (We will not clog your news feed...2-3 updates per month maximum)
Proceeds are going toward equipping our classrooms with much needed desks, tables, chairs, computers, projector, furniture that a classroom needs. We are also at maximum capacity and need to enlarge our space. Will you help us??
RCF, Inc. is a registered 501c3 non-profit ministry