Last week I shared these words over at Katie Reid’s place: The enemy will always amplify our insecurity, but he can never steal our victory.
Turns out, that enemy decided to give my victory a run for its money.
In the weeks leading up to those words being published and in the days after, I sensed a battle waging. My resolve was weak. My purpose seemed distant. With a long weekend ahead, my intent was to lock myself away and lay down some long-awaited words. But, the very sight of my laptop caused anxiety to swell in my heart.
I questioned my calling, my ability, and the value of the work. When my passion for words transforms into a thorn in my side, I know there is something much bigger at work.
“Your adversary, the devil, prowls around like a roaring lion, seeking someone to devour.”
1 Peter 5:8 NASB
Our enemy delights in waging war on our best laid intentions. When we purpose to magnify God, the devil plans to poke holes in our resolve. The king of lies is deceitful, crafty, and entirely willing to wage war against our hope and stay. Nothing is off-limits where he is concerned. If he can’t reach us, he’ll tactically assault our husbands, our children, and all we hold dear in order to wreak havoc around us. The devil is very real.
But God is greater.
“The eyes of the Lord search the whole earth in order to strengthen
those whose hearts are fully committed to Him.”
2 Chronicles 16:9 NLT
Often my gut reaction in my weary state is to roll over and give up. It feels easier than the fight. But I’ve learned that what Satan wants us to surrender is often what God is calling us to pursue. It quickly became evident that my own resources were not sufficient for my weakness.
So how do we access the strength that seems to elude us when the devil comes calling?
- Relinquish the burden and receive grace:
With my goals for a productive weekend dashed, I felt like a failure. The enemy’s tactic is to assault us with guilt for being too weary to overcome. God offers to relieve us of that weight and exchange our strength for His. More so, His grace covers the guilt. There is no better place to lay down our burden than at the feet of Jesus. (←Tweet that!)
- Refuel with promise and disregard the devil:
We have every day, moment to moment, all-access to God, but sometimes we need to storm the gates of His throne room. We can’t be afraid to cast (to throw with force) our cares on Him. Drain your heart of its anxiety and refuel with God’s promise. Exchange the devil’s lies for God’s truth. And then, tell Satan loud and clear to go straight to … where he came from.
- Release your expectations:
Don’t expect magic. God isn’t a genie. He’s sovereign, and likely using this process to refine and strengthen our faith and dependence. Our purpose in pursuing God isn’t emotional experience, but renewing strength. I didn’t leave my time with God instantly productive. There was no illuminated scripture or even a definitive word. My desire was to simply re-connect my heart to His. God shows up when we go looking for Him. He always does. He always will. He did for me and He will for you.
- Realize it’s a fight:
My pursuit of God in the midst of very real weariness wasn’t natural, it was purposeful. Nature would have me curl on my side (again) and take a nap. Purpose had me seek God out with intent. Sometimes we have to choose what our flesh would have us ignore. The enemy wants nothing more than to keep us down. We must fight for what the devil wants to steal and destroy—our dependence on God.
I once heard a pastor say that if the devil hasn’t come calling, you’re probably doing something wrong. It’s no coincidence that when our purpose and intent is to magnify God, the enemy will wage war. But the same truth I penned weeks ago, applies today:
The enemy will ALWAYS amplify our insecurity, but he can NEVER steal our victory.
If we’ve genuinely given our heart, soul, and life to Christ, it’s His forever. We may drift, run, or attempt to ignore that fact (p.s. Satan loves that!), but we belong to One who does not give up that which He calls His own. Jesus willingly died to guarantee our victory—and Satan simply can’t have us. (←Tweet that!)
#inHimican : There is something beautiful about encouraging and being encouraged by the body of Christ. As you live, see, and create images and words that ignite your strength in Christ, join me on Instagram and Twitter using the hashtag #inHimican. Because in Christ we are more than conquerors!!
You can also find these words linked up at my favorite spots: Jennifer Dukes Lee (#tellhisstory), Holley Gerth (#coffeeforyourheart), Kristin Hill Taylor (#threewordwednesday), and 3D Lessons for Life (#ThoughtProvokingThursday).