15 Nov
Still Trickin - Week 11

Last week I wrote about the love of God fighting against the tricks of our enemy. I gave praise to our Father, rejoiced in the works I see Him doing, and encouraged the choice of setting our eyes on Him despite the negativity I was facing. There’s no doubt of faith in my heart that Christ is all that matters and that He is living in each one of us. (Colossians 3:11) However, as mentioned, I also believe that the devil wants us to believe otherwise. Even though I rebuked the devil plenty of times this last week, after all his attacks, he tried to fight harder, and he tried to fight dirtier.

I mentioned that the devil was up to no good by way of infecting my thoughts and taking away my desire to say grace for a meal. This week he didn’t stop. While I’m back to praying for the gifts of daily bread, Sunday another unusual thing happened to me. All year, all 345 days of this year, I have dedicated daily time to read the Word of God, but this past Sunday I decided against it. I was in a negative mood and even though I had the thought “you haven’t read today, why don’t you read, get up and read,” I adamantly said no. Waking up the next day, even I was surprised by my choice. That’s when I decided enough is enough. I’ve had enough of the enemy trying to steal my joy. I’ve had enough of the enemy disturbing my thoughts. I’ve had enough of the enemy pushing my buttons and troubling my heart. I’ve had enough! The devil only goes where he’s invited to stay and he’s long overstayed his non-existent welcome in my life.

Trying to live for, with, and in Christ is the easiest, hardest thing I’ve ever had to do. There’s a constant struggle to get out of my own head, focus on others, give grace, and be thankful for the abundant blessings God has given me. I feel ridiculous just writing those things, but sometimes it’s true. Sometimes it’s hard not to focus on the areas of life that make us sad and it’s hard not giving into the temptation that temporarily makes things appear better. I have a hard time remaining strong in my weaknesses and an even harder time being patient with people or understanding their brokenness, exercising kindness in my awareness of this. I’ve been reading a lot about how saying we love the Lord or actually doing it are two different things and this week it seemed that the devil really wanted to see which side of the fence I was truly on.

Aside from the daily reading I missed out on, the devil also threw more unexpected heart wrenching surprises my way. These attacks were stronger and more advanced after I decided that I’d had enough. He once again played on my emotions, the ones he knows I’m sensitive to. He brought attention to the missing love in a relationship I thought was special. He presented me with the opportunity to voice anger, hurt, and the ridiculousness of it all to not one, but THREE different people at three different times, all of who are common in our lives. I was given the chance to spitefully and damagingly hurt someone who had just hurt me. With everything I had I wanted to tell these people how insensitive, how uncaring, and how mean our friend had been to me. I wanted to give away truths that would harm future relationships and prevent this friend from being happy with what they thought they wanted. Regardless of all my wants, the Lord had different desires.

The Lord pressed on my heart that I was to respond to prying questions and hurtful comments in humility. I was reminded to be good natured and gentle. I was asked to put all my feelings aside and display the love of our Lord while I hurt immeasurably inside. I knew it was coming and it exhausted me to do it. I was on the brink of tears each time I had to, but I am thankful to report I believe I responded the way Christ wanted me to. I did not let the devil win those battles. Though I disclosed a little more information to one person than I should have, and mentioned a brief discouraging truth to another, I refrained from sharing anything with the third (their family member none the less). Whether I meant it or not at the time, I blessed the future of a new relationship for this person that hurt me, and if I stop to think about things… that blessing remains true.

The joy I have in not letting the devil win and the joy I have in seeing Christ’s promises fulfilled, does not take away from the hurt and anger I feel. It doesn’t make life any less painful. In actuality, the wisdom or knowledge of this joy can be quite the battle. “For with much wisdom comes much sorrow; the more knowledge, the more grief.” (Ecclesiastes 1:18) But Scriptures also tell us, "Happy is the man who finds wisdom, and the man who gains understanding." (Proverbs 3:13) It says that, “an intelligent heart acquires knowledge, and the ear of the wise seeks knowledge.” (Proverbs 18:15)

I pray to never get tired of fighting the good fight and I pray for strength in continually seeking out the knowledge our good Lord so freely gives away. I trust in the promise that if we do not grow weary, at just the right moment, we will reap what we sow but I had to pray hard to accept and deliver what Christ wanted of me this week. Truth is, I am getting tired and I am growing weary in the selfishness of my own heart. I pray to believe and rest in the things that are so easy for me to share with others and I ask for the steadiness of God and His angels to bring me to a place where the focus of my life is on all that matters. Christ is all that matters.

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