Giving encouragement and sharing the meat of God’s Word
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Summer transitioning to fall gives me much
more difficulty than any other seasonal change. I mean, winter to spring is a
roller-coaster ride. I’m up when the air has warmed, but down when the skies
darken and snow flurries return. Still, I know magnificent spring is only days
away. Spring to summer is exciting and much easier. The warm weather just gets
warmer. I bask the beauty of God’s handiwork enjoying intense sunlight and
longer days. Fall to winter also doesn’t seem to affect me as much. I’ve
already become accustomed to less daylight and cooler temps and, of course,
holiday anticipation keeps me in high spirits.
Nevertheless, when the shorter, gray daysof fall appear, I feel gloomy and down. I become
very introspective, thinking things need to change in my life, but not sure
what or how they should change. Sometimes, I seem to disengage, just going
through the motions of living.
Maybe some of you are like me. And if so, what
will it take for us to maintain lifted spirits and repel gray dayeffects? Should we jump on the world’s band wagon and start planning
Hallowe’en parties; or should we do something to please and honor our Lord?
I think the latter. In fact, it’s in these
times I really need to read God’s Word all the more; expecting Him to speak and
listening very closely for His voice. Then, I must BELIEVE what He says.
Normally God’s Holy Word is my passion, but
when the gray days hit, I have trouble desiring to be in His Word. Life’s
trials easily divert my attention and Bible reading is almost a chore. But,
Do you think Satan could be involved? I think,
yes. When we have difficulty absorbing the Word of God and hearing His voice,
you can be sure it’s a tactic of the enemy. Satan will use any method to thwart
God’s plan and get our eyes off the Savior. He will make us question who we are
in Christ and who Christ is in us.
Why is that? No doubt it’s because Satan
doesn’t want us to remember he’s already defeated and the lake of fire is his
future. Yet, I believe God uses Satan’s activity to purify and hone His Body,
Even so, this enemy wants us frightened and
scared, thinking we will never escape his clutches. But that’s a lie, a fiery
dart deliberately shot. And, according
to Mark Altrogge, Senior Pastor, Sovereign Grace Church of Indiana, PA, these
fiery darts are Satan’s greatest weapons.
So, let’s try to answer Pastor Mark’s
question: “How much power does Satan
In his article,
he references Job, indicating Satan’s power was limited to what God allowed in
Job’s life. What an amazing thought. Satan can only do to us what God has
allowed. Still, when you read Job, Satan caused immense damage. I certainly
wouldn’t want to suffer as Job did and I’m sure you agree.
So must we? Well, consider this: Job lived before Jesus died for our sin and
before He gave us His name, His
His armor. Job
lived before Jesus shared His inheritance
and before Jesus granted believers authority to trample on serpents and
scorpions and over all the power of the enemy.
Certainly, God allowed things in Job’s life to
prove a point to Satan, but mostly, I believe, to open Job’s spiritual eyes.
Still, I’m not saying that we
can avert calamity by rebuking Satan or that Satan initiates every calamity.
But what I am saying is, if gray daysare
fueling spiritual distance from your heavenly Father, Satan and his minions are,
no doubt, somehow involved. So remember, you do not have to remain distant. You
can seek first His kingdom,
draw near to God and
resist the devil,
because Jesus has overcome the world.
facing something daunting? Something you know you can do, but one little bobble
could thwart the whole thing and keep you from achieving your goal. Maybe it’s
a task you need to complete or an ability test that will take you to the next
level in accomplishment. Is it a speech, a project, or an idea to pitch? So
many activities in life require excellence, a body honed to perfection, a
focused mind, incredible speed, or years of study. On the
other hand, you know you are capable. You’ve done all the essential preparatory
work. You’ll try your best, but nerves may spoil your performance, make your
mind go blank, or worse, sweaty palms and a queasy stomach. You resolve to push
through whatever happens, yet apprehension and anxiety consume your thoughts
and you just need breathe.
your test is over and now you are waiting for the results. Your mind has
reviewed every detail, every word uttered, and every move you made or didn’t
make. I should have said or done this or that. …
DOCTRINES OF DEMONS Are you grieved
that our culture thinks so little of the God who created us and the world in
which we live that they accept when our Sovereign, Holy God is reduced to a caricature
or a joke in a monologue? I mean, where is their fear? Not just reverential
fear, I’m talking real out and out fear of Him who is able to destroy both soul
and body in hell. Do you
think it’s just a sign of the times and the prophesied falling away? In Luke
18:8, Jesus asked a question, “Nevertheless, when the Son of Man comes, will He
really find faith on the earth?” You might think this is a rhetorical question,
but it’s not. He’s telling of things to come and trying to make us think. So, what
type of thing would cause a believer to lose faith and possibly walk away from
the TRUTH of the Holy Scriptures they may have known
from childhood or as an adult that brought
us to Christ?
Why do the
nations rage, and the people plot a vain thing? You would
almost think these words are right out of newspaper headlines and television
news, but they’re not. This question was penned by King David about three
thousand years ago and then reiterated by Peter about one thousand years later.
Yet, since then, things have not really changed. Nations still rage and people
continue to plot and carry out vain things. Case in
point, the political lies coming out of the news media and specifically the
three CNN employees who resigned on June 26, 2017, when an article they wrote
had to be retracted. I’m sure this has always been the situation with the media,
but no one, up until this point, has been brave enough to say it. Maybe others out
there knew some in the media greatly embellish their stories with half-truths
or fabrications, but what they had to hide, compelled them to stay silent.