You Can Overcome the Lie of Satan!

In my walk with the Lord and helping to minister to others I have seen many Christians fall into the traps that were set by Satan, the adversary of their soul. To fall into a trap of Satan simply means we believe a lie about ourselves, and we, therefore, remain in bondage to a demonic stronghold. A lie of Satan becomes a stronghold the moment we believe what he is telling us about a situation or a condition we are facing instead of standing on the Word of God. Remember Christ didn’t come to save us from sin so that we could die in bondage to its power. According to Luke 4:18, He was sent and anointed to set us FREE!! 

“I can do all things through Christ who strengthens me.” Philippians 4:13

Like many others, you may be in a trap of Satan today. Are you fighting a battle against something in your life that won’t seem to let go? Then you need “MORE GRACE.” This is not a cliche’. Instead, it is a truth that can set you free so that you can begin to walk out of the trap. You must not accept defeat. If you are a born-again believer, then Christ will cause you to triumph ALWAYS. The key is to turn to the Lord and submit yourself (including any doubts, fears, or unbelief) you may be holding onto in your heart. God is for you. However, you must be willing to believe and accept this truth before He can give you the power to come out completely.

Just because you have a stronghold in your life, it doesn’t mean that God has abandoned you. The Lord has promised that He would never leave or forsake us. Even so, we must give Jesus our full attention and cooperation in this matter. When the Holy Spirit instructs you to make the first step or to take action, you have to obey His voice and let Him take care of the details. This will require you to submit to Him and trust His instructions at all times. As you take the initial steps, doubt, fear, and unbelief will begin to scream out, “You can’t do this.” Nevertheless, don’t worry; once you obey God’s voice, it’s not you doing the work. It is God’s strength and grace flowing through you.

The more we submit by faith to God’s will and His Word, the more grace He will extend to us so that we can come out of the traps of Satan.

The unexplained

Most of us spend a good amount of time trying to understand our life experiences. If we are being honest, many things haven’t made sense. Unexplained paths. Dashed expectations. Disappointments. Shattered dreams. There are times in our lives when we have looked back over our shoulder and thought, God what in the world was that all about? But instead of trying to analyze them through a lens of good or bad, right or wrong, perfect or imperfect, God’s will or my will, maybe we need to look at them through the lens of holiness. Have a wonderful day as you remain in His presence.

“Be holy because I am holy” (1 Peter 1:16).

The definition of holiness–in a nutshell–means being set apart to purity, to be like God. And the result of holiness, of God transforming us to make us more like Him, is outrageous joy, amazing peace, overflowing love—and all the other things that are embodied in our Perfect Creator. So what does holiness have to do with trying to understand life’s painful, meaningless, or seemingly pointless experiences?

When I understand that God’s goal is to make me holy, not to always make me happy or grant all my desires, then every imperfect situation, every struggle, every disappointment, every heartache, every experience I can’t understand, and even my sin become means for Him to accomplish His goal to make me holy. Everything (and I mean everything!) has divine purpose(even things that in our finite minds can we imagine how it can accomplish His goal to make us holy). But for those who belong to Christ, no experience in life—good or bad—is ever wasted! God uses everything. Unfaithful mate? An opportunity for holiness. Broken dreams? An opportunity for holiness. Unemployment? An opportunity for holiness. Financial struggles? An opportunity for holiness. Lost loved ones? An opportunity for holiness. Since we don’t exactly understand how God transforms us to make us more holy through life’s struggles, we have to cooperate with Him and do what He asks of us. And, we have to take Him at His Word.

Isn’t this what Romans 8:28 promises? It’s His guarantee that “in all things God works for the good of those who love him who have been called according to His purpose.” He is always at work to transform us into His likeness–and that means greater joy!

The comfort you need!

I will keep going forward. I will never give up because God is going to shower me with His blessings. Our Heavenly Father is known as “the Father of mercies” and “the God of all comfort.” When you feel like you are in over your head, He is the God of all comfort. The Message translation says, “He comes alongside us when we go through hard times, . . . rescued us from certain doom.” He is right there with you helping you through these hard times that you are experiencing. Have a wonderful day as you remain in Him and receive His comfort. Love you all.

“Praise be to the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, the Father of compassion and the God of all comfort, who comforts us in all our troubles, so that we can comfort those in any trouble with the comfort we ourselves receive from God.” 2 Corinthians 1:3-4.

You may be at the bottom today. You may be at the end of your rope. You may be spending many sleepless nights not knowing what else could possibly be done to turn your situation around. I want to encourage you today: don’t give up. Don’t quit. It is not over. Just because the circumstances indicate that it is and just because the devil is saying that it is, it is not over. As long as there is mercy, as long as you serve the God who is gracious and full of compassion, it is not over. Your best days are just ahead. Your future is still bright. It doesn’t matter what you’ve done or how bad you think you’ve messed up, God will turn this entire situation around for His glory and you will be smiling, rejoicing and you will be free again!

You may be in over your head right now, but I want to paint a picture of where you are headed – “showered with blessings.” That is the mercy of God. That is the favor of God. That is the compassion of God. That’s the reason the devil is screaming at you like he is. He does not want you to experience these showers of blessings. Obviously, if you give up, there will be no manifestation of the shower of blessings. If you call it quits, if you turn your back on God, if you quit going to church, if you quit reading the Word, if you quit praying, if you get discouraged and say, “I don’t want any part of this. It doesn’t work,” you just did exactly what the devil hoped you would do.

Look at what you would miss out on as a result of it . . . showers of blessings. That ought to motivate you to keep on standing, keep on reading, keep on confessing, keep on praying, keep on believing for a breakthrough! That is why it is so important that you refuse to give up even when you feel like you cannot take anymore. Showers of blessings are coming your way. You will experience freedom from this oppression. The mercy of God is headed your way.

Intent

Is God only concerned about the intent of the heart?

PictureRecently, I heard a pastor preach and said that, “What’s important to God is what’s in a person’s heart, and so, even if an act is questionable in your eyes, if the intentions for doing an act is good, then God approves of the act.”  The pastor goes on to imply that this is the reason why we should not judge any man’s acts as we can’t see anyway the intent of his heart.

Did the said pastor preach correctly?  Is God really just concern about the intent of the heart in actions that are taken?

At first glance, we might say, “YES”, the statement made by the pastor is correct.  But careful analysis of it, coupled with an examination of the Bible will lead us to the conclusion that the intent of the heart is not the only basis for God’s approval of our actions.

Let me say first that there are many instances that, yes, our actions are governed by good intentions from the heart that people may applaud.  But that does not mean that the actions are morally correct.  Take, for example, the person that lies to protect another person.  The intention for lying is good but the act of lying is wrong in God’s sight as He commands, “Thou shalt not lie” (Exodus 20:16).  The same goes for the person that steals so that he could feed his starving family.  If good intentions is the only criterion for God’s approval of our actions, then same-sex marriage will be right because same-sex couples say that they do it because of love.  But we all know that God disapproves of homosexuality and same-sex marriage.  Job 34:12 clearly states that, “…surely God will not do wickedly, neither will the Almighty pervert judgment.

So, what is God’s criteria for approving our actions?  The Bible tells us that our heart must be in every action that we do (Colossians 3:23 “And whatsoever ye do, do it heartily, as to the Lord, and not unto men“), but it does not stop there.  God wants that in doing things from the heart, the intent for an action must always be in accordance to TRUTH, and the Bible is our source of truth.  This is why the psalmist pleaded, “Lead me in thy truth, and teach me: for thou art the God of my salvation; on thee do I wait all the day (Psalm 25:5)”; “O send out thy light and thy truth: let them lead me; let them bring me unto thy holy hill, and to thy tabernacles.(Psalm 43:3)”; “Teach me thy way, O Lord; I will walk in thy truth: unite my heart to fear thy name (Psalm 86:11)”.

Psalm 51:6 tells us this… “Thou desires truth in the inwardparts: and in the hidden part thou shalt make me to know wisdom.” What does God look for in our inward parts (heart)?  It’s so clear… truth.  The verse also shows us that if truth is behind every intentions of our actions, then we will always act in wisdom.  You can even see God’s preference for the marriage of heart intentions and truth in the worship we render Him as He declared in John 4:24, “God is a Spirit: and they that worship him must worship himin spirit and in truth.” This makes a lot of the things we do in worship services unapproved.  If corporate worship practices do not have any biblical basis, then we really do not worship in spirit and in truth.  If songs we sing in corporate worship do not mirror what the Bible declares of God then we also fail to worship in spirit and in truth. Colossians 3:16 declared, “Let the word of Christ dwell in you richly in all wisdom; teaching and admonishing one another in psalms and hymns and spiritual songs, singing with grace in your hearts to the Lord.” Songs we sing, from this verse, must result to teaching and admonishment.  How much of the songs we sing in church teach and admonish?  Sadly, very few, therefore, we sing not in truth.

Truth must be central in the actions of any Christian.  Even the preacher must be sure that he correctly handles the Word.  This is the reason why messages should be the product of strict exegetical Bible study. Evangelism must be done biblically and not out of craftiness.  Even the Gospel message is under attack in our time.  So many Christians share it in a watered-down way, lacking the emphasis on sin, righteousness and judgment that Jesus and His followers gave it.

Why does God want truth to always be the rock where our intents for actions are anchored?  The answer is simple… Because He is Truth (John 14:6)!  This means that every time we do things in truth, we honor Him.  And when actions are not in accordance with truth, we dishonor Him.

God wants our actions to always be anchored on truth because if we do this, we will be free from His judgment and we will declare to people around us that we are Jesus’ followers.  This is what is being implied in John 8:31-32, “Then said Jesus to those Jews which believed on him, If ye continue in my word, then are ye my disciples indeed; And ye shall know the truth, and the truth shall make you free.

May God help us to always do things heartily in truth!

I will trust in Him

There is no way around this fact that in this life we will have trials. We will have struggles. To grow is to stretch ourselves. With this come risks. So we step out in faith; and even then, we can have times of fear, doubt and anxiety. Many times we avoid conflict, hide from our struggles or simply try to escape pain through various ways. We can try and ignore our pressures but sooner or later avoidance won’t work anymore. We have to face the situation we find ourselves in and put our complete trust in God. 

“So my dear brothers and sisters, be strong and immovable. Always work enthusiastically for the Lord, for you know nothing you do for the Lord is ever useless.”  1 Corinthians 15:58

The good news is that God is faithful. He knows our struggles, he knows our limitations. Paul the Apostle encourages us, because of the love and power of God, to stand firm and let nothing move us. Jesus encourages us not to let our hearts be troubled by believing in God who is almighty and all loving. God is for us. He loves us. He is our strength. So today, stand firm, put all your trust in God. Exercise your faith and give all your struggles, trials and temptations to Him.

Feel yourself being weighed down by trials and tribulation. You burden is so heavy. You are at the end of your rope when you remember to call out to Jesus. You cry out to Him and decide to stand firm letting nothing move you from your resolve to trust God. You feel you burden become lighter. You sense that God is giving you strength to live for Him. You affirm, “I will trust in God!”