8And He said, Be on your guard and be careful that you are not led astray; for many will come in My name [[a]appropriating to themselves the name Messiah which belongs to Me], saying, I am He! and, The time is at hand! Do not go out after them.
Luke 21:8 (The Amplified Bible)
On the way to work this morning, I came up behind a pickup truck that looked to have an outline of Jesus sitting on its back center windshield. I thought to myself, how cool that was, it was almost one of those pictures that you can look at for a long time and then blink and it changes and you see something else. Well I didn’t have to blink for it to change; I just had to get closer. The closer I came upon this truck, the more the picture started to alter. And soon as I was right there and I saw it for exactly what it was- an exotic picture of a woman holding a mink boa. Wow, how had just a few car lengths changed my interpretation of it.
This really made me think- how many times in our lives do we allow things to look really appealing from afar, but once we get up close we realize how they are not at all what they appeared and how harmful they are. And maybe not just harmful- but deadly they can become.
Sin is this way. Satan has a way of cleaning it up, packaging and slapping on a little window dressing and making it look like something you’ve always wanted, when it is not. He knows how to make the dead look alive, the evil look innocent and the plan look appealing. He’s a master at it and how many times has he hooked us? Too many times for me than I wish to admit.
See, I think we underestimate Satan- We know our God is more powerful and more awesome and could send Satan wheeling into the next galaxy if He really wanted to, but He doesn’t. Satan is alive and well and is living among us- earth is his domain. I work in a office setting with hundreds of people in one building and I don’t even have to leave my building to see Satan’s handy work, sometimes it’s very, very close. And I will admit, there have been people and situations at my work place that have looked innocent and appealing- but I know because Jesus has allowed me to see some situations for what they really are, that certain situations might look like they need my help or they would be fun to join in, but Praise God- my eyes have been opened at times to see it all for what it really is- A deadly situation.
We may be living among Satan and his Demons on the outside- but the Spirit of the Lord God Almighty lives within us and as long as He has occupancy- Satan can not. I hope this helps you, but sometimes when I feel I’m being attacked by Satan and his “thugs” I have to just stop and dwell on his Spirit that’s within me. I have to ask that His Spirit will make Himself known to me in such an intimate way and will stir my every being. I close my eyes and I can imagine The Spirit circling me like a tornado- making a hedge of protection. That illustration gives me peace.
I know we live in an evil world- I see it everywhere. I see so many good Christian people fighting the fight everyday-all day long. I have never in my life felt more like a minority than I do in these present days. We have people that look as if they have our best interests at hearts. They walk a good walk and talk a good talk- and I’m not encouraging any of us to get close enough to see for ourselves, because it’s too easy to get caught up and sucked in- I know people it has happened to.
It’s so easy to get discouraged and hard to see the positive sometimes- but always remember we serve a God who IS the KING- not the ambassador, not the Prince, not a dignitary, He’s the KING. And He’s not just King over our country or our government, He’s not just King over another continent, He is King over this world and everything beyond- He rules over EVERYTHING.
Please be careful and allow God to show you sin from His protected hedge. Stay close enough to Him that you’re not tempted to get up close and personal before it’s too late to realize that it’s not what it seemed and you’ve become trapped in a web of sin. Ask daily for His arms of security- He never wishes for us to be hurt, He never wishes for us to fall astray and He never wishes for us to be lost.
Open your eyes, see things for what they really are, ask God to give you wisdom to discern good from evil- seek His ultimate protection and allow Him to show you what He made for you to enjoy- the beauty of His world- the Christian friends and family He has placed in your life.. Stay focused on Him and His Kingdom always- don’t search for “green pastures” on the other side- it could be a trick that will pull you in and away from everything you love and hold dear. And never forget the Heaven that He has a promised us- where there will be no more pain, suffering or tears. Let’s encourage each other and hold each other accountable- but mostly let’s give God all the praise that He deserves for being who He is- Our Salvation- Our Deliverer- Our Future.