Thursday, May 31, 2018

STRONGER PART 6 | Conclusion.

I came across a book early this year by Havilah Cunnington titled “Stronger than the Struggle”. I strongly recommend you read it. Much of what I am blogging here is from that book and what I did with a ladies group called Coffee Chats. If you find this useful, please feel free to use this material in a study group you might be leading. The blogs in this series are reflections and a summary of what I got from this fantastic book that I recommend you to buy. Click here for PART 5 of this Blog series


PART 6 – CONCLUSION
So we have seen how we need to identify the source of our battle i.e Internal, External or our belief system. We have looked at the weapons the enemy uses against us i.e theft, death, and destruction. These are his fingerprints. You know he is at work when you see any of these. We have looked at how we should respond, and the tools we have. Most battles are in our mind.

 We fight by taking every thought captive and replacing it with the truth. We fight with the word of God, opportunities of grace that God puts across our path, the rehma word. We also saw that it is important to trust, to yield to God. We need to replace fear with faith.
Remember the devil is the chief enemy of your soul and he wants to destroy it so that he can keep you from your God-given destiny.

Therefore in our daily lives how do we stay powerful? What am I responsible for?

1.     PARTNER WITH YOUR MIRACLE
I am responsible for my choices and what I believe in. I can partner with the Prince of peace or partner with the spirit of fear and anxiety. We all get anxious every now and then. Then there are some who live under a constant cloud of fear. This is a spirit that you need to send packing by declaring the truth of the Word of God over your life and situations.

Let’s look at the man beside the pool of Bethesda. He was sick for 38 years. Jesus asked him a strange question. Do you want to get well? What a strange question you might say? Jesus often asked this of people. He asked the blind man if he wanted to see. Sometimes we get comfortable with our problem that we actually empower it and give it permission to stay.

This man has two excuses – First is complained and said that he had no one to push hint into the pool. That is a victim mentality I.e. no one understands, I am all alone, my situation is unique. It’s an isolation that Satan puts you under. I have been there. Like in the story, I mentioned. Because I did not get the help I was looking for, I felt isolated and a victim. While I did not get the help, I could have moved on. I could have looked upward to the One who is greater. He is the one who gave me the dream in the first place. Would HE not have enabled me? And enable me he did. He guided me to tools I needed and then there was no stopping.

The second excuse was “Someone always beats me to it”. This is like saying God you have limited resources and it has run out on me! How ridiculous is that! Worse still is comparison. We look at others people’s blessings and miracles and feel envious, jealous, we compare and get bitter and even get angry with God. Jesus full of grace ask the man t get up and walk. HE did not enable his victim mindset. Jesus gave him a chance to partner with his miracle. The man had a choice. Jesus asked him to get up. He gave him an opportunity to be powerful and do something. Blame leads us to get stuck in the mud.

On the other hand we see the Centurion. For him, the Word was enough. Both men faced a problem. One felt powerless and the other did what he could.

Self-pity can make you feel powerless and get you so absorbed in the problem that you do not see the solution. You may even be right about the source of the problem but that will not get you unstuck. You have to partner with the miracle.

Remember comparison is the enemies’ way of telling ou that there isn’t enough to go around and that God is holding out on you.
Excuses and blame don’t help change anything. We have to take responsibility for our selves. I learned this the hard way. It took me a few years to get out of that pity pit.

SO WHAT DO WE DO?
Obey the Prince of Peace
Partner with the Holy Spirit
We can respond in faith or stay in unbelief
I can’t do everything but I can do something!

THE DUST OF DISTRACTION
 When you have a speck of dust on your lens it ruins all your pictures doesn’t it? The dust of distraction can make us ineffective. This is one more tactic the Devil uses.

In those three vital years that Jesus ministered, he said some very important things and gave us very important advice.
Jesus gave us strategies of how to deal with different people. Some will accept you and some will reject you. He tells us to shake the dust off!!

Jesus knew that we would need a stratergy to deal with offence. If we don’t know how to deal with this we will take this into every situation. Its not if offence comes, but when it comes.
Offence is a trigger and a trap. Offence can take you hostage. The pain, the anger can hold you hostage. IT will color the way you look at everything. It will prevent you from taking steps towards reconciliation or trying to resolve a conflict. Offence rides on the ugly back of pride. We have all been there. We have either taken offence or given it.

Now the word “take” offense implies we have a choice. I can chose not to take offence. IT is always a choice. I could either pick up the courage or seek clarification in a situation. I can choose to overlook the wrong done. I can chose to give the other person the benefit of the doubt. If I feel there could be a misunderstanding caused by my actions, I need to have the courage and ask what the matter is. The onus is then on that person to seek to keep the connection and respond or not.

I have had to do this when there was a rift in a friendship. I sought to reconnect to no avail. Finally, a letter helped me understand what the problem was. I could not do more than that. The Bible says as far as it depend on you live in peace. Make every effort to reconcile. A relationship might never come to restoration but sometimes that is for the best. Praise God I can say today that there is reconciliation in the friendship.

So whatever it, is we need to fight it. The greek word “skandalon” is where we get the word scandalized. It is the stick in the trap that springs and closes the trap when the animal touches it.

This is one of the deadliest weapons Satan uses against us. I have written a blog on Offence where I go into more detail on this topic. Offence affects the core of our heart. It is like drinking poison or allowing a cancer to grow inside os us. The Bible warns us not to allow bitterness to take root in our hearts. We also need to beware of judging people. When we are able to deal with offence in a godly way it brings glory to God.
What are the common offence s in our lives?

Part from our soul the other big enemy of Satan is the church. He will do everything to keep us divided. A united body is powerful. He seeks to bring misunderstandings and make them irreconcilable differences simply because often one person is too proud to admit their fault.

Jesus spoke of the spec in our neighbors eye and the plank in our own. A plank is made up of tiny specs. Each offence that we accumulate will cause our vision to be impaired.
Satan loves to caused division and destroy friendships, intimacy, marriages. The closer the relationship , the greater the offence.
It takes one to forgive, but two to reconcile. God takes many and makes us ONE. Satan takes that one and tries to make many. We need to be very careful fo this. Do not allow it to build up.

“Offence is an event, being Offended is a state you are in” Havilah Cunnnington. When you take offence and nurture it you become offended. So deal with this one swiftly.




CONCLUDING WORDS

Moat days of our lives are lived out in the dailyness of mundane routine. Yet it is about discipline and staying the course. Then sometimes we hear how someone has had this amazing breakthrough in life. Someone gets this trip to an exotic place all paid for while you have been saving up for just a small holiday. We can get angry or feel cheated or we can celebrate God’s grace upon that person’s life.

If we cannot celebrate another person’s happiness, blessing or grace, we will never be able to step into our own. WE will block our own blessing. This is another trap. The enemy prowls around like a roaring lion seeking to kill and devour. Lions hunt at night or early in the morning. Those are vulnerable, weak times. That is what the devil will do. He will seek you out when you are weak and vulnerable.

On a practical note, make sure that you are eating healthy, getting enough sleep and exercise. All these affect you emotional and mental balance as well. When you feel you do not have the strength to go on call back to mind Lam 3:22-23 : His mercies are new every morning, great is your faithfulness.

DON’T GO IT ALONE
In your battle, you need good friends to be with you. Find friends who will pour fuel on your dreams and not your fears. Some of us need a change in friend circle. Proverbs tells us that bad company corrupts good character. Ask ourself : are your friends helping you grow in the things of God?
Are they provoking you to live your dream and pursue your destiny whatever that might be?
Are they honest with you when you need some truth to be spoken to you?
Do they stand with you when you are in trouble or weak and vulnerable?
What counsel do they give you and where does it come from?
Miserable bitter people have a way of finding each other. So chose your friends wisely.

  We also need to be intentional about our relationships. Satan hates our friendships, marriages. Do not take these for granted. A lot of our struggles are in these very areas probably because we have taken things lightly and let things slide.

Be careful for being performance driven. Do the best you can. We need to be resilient and have endurance. 2Tim 4:7 says “I have fought the fight…” Phil 3:14 Paul says he will press on toward the goal. 2Cor 4:9

To conclude: the Holy Spirit will never run. Jesus calls us to come and drink from so that we may never thirst again. So do not have a scarcity mentality. You will always have what you need. God’s grace, provision favour are unlimited. They will never run out. If you think it will, you will not be able to celebrate another peon’s success.

Fight the good fight of faith; Run you race, You have a destiny in God. What we focus most is what we reflect. What we think about the most will grow. We act from our thoughts and not independent of them.

Our struggle will not last forever. A time will come when all this wrap like an old blanket. The battle will end. Christ will return and he will have our rewards in his hand. One day we will be with him forever. This study inspired me to write a song of Hope called “ YOU ARE STRONGER”. You can listen to it by clicking here. Jesus is stronger than all the powers of darkness, the trails, schemes, lies the devil will throw at us.


I hope you enjoyed this series as much as I did share it with you. Drop me a line to let me know how it has benefited you.

I pray that whatever season you are in, you will learn to fight well and grow stronger and fo on to fulfill all your God-given dreams.






Tuesday, May 29, 2018

STRONGER - PART 5| HOW DO WE FIGHT?


PART 5
I came across a book early this year by Havilah Cunnington titled “Stronger than the Struggle”. I strongly recommend you read it. Much of what I am blogging here is from that book and what I did with a ladies group called Coffee Chats. If you find this useful, please feel free to use this material in a study group you might be leading. The blogs in this series are reflections and a summary of what I got from this fantastic book that I recommend you to buy. 
For part 4 please click here

Before we go any further, I just want to say the whole of our life is not a battle. It is not meant to be that way. That was not what Jesus had in mind when he said He has come to give us life in abundance. He wants us to have righteousness, peace, and joy in the Holy Spirit. He wants to give it us what no eye has seen nor ear has heard, he wants us to enjoy all the treasures of heaven.  Victorious living is a part of our journey with God. However, we all go through seasons of struggle. Trial and troubles cannot be your lifestyle. If that is the case I recommend that you talk to someone who will be able to help you discern where the source of the trouble is.

So what tools do we have? One tool that translates across all barriers of time, geography, culture, age, and experience is TRUTH. God’s truth interpreted properly. Jesus used it to fight the devil in the wilderness. Though our enemy is defeated, we still need to know how to deal with him. Paul in Eph 6:17 onwards teaches how to fight.

The weapon we have is the Sword of the Spirit the word of God. This has two meanings. 1)LOGOS is the whole counsel of the word of God. All of it
2) REHMA is a specific word of the Spirit for a specific situation. You need both. You cannot have Rehma if you do not know the logos.

When we are fighting the enemy we need both. Rehma the quickened “now” word which is a word for a particular situation at that moment. When I am in financial trouble the word I call back to mind is not to say “ Love the Lord your God…” good as that might be. I need to call to mind verses that speak of God’s provision like “my God shall supply all my needs”.

The Roman soldiers used two swords big one to practice with and a small dagger in battle. It required less effort but was very effective. Jesus used the Rehma word in the desert when he fought Satan saying “Man shall not live by bread alone”
In order for you to be able to this, you need to be filled with the Word of God, worship, listen to an uplifting message, Feed your spirit well so when you are in a battle you know which dagger to pull out and not just your favourite  scripture.

The devil wants us to think that we are fighting for victory, which is not true. Jesus has already won the victory for us.

One of the things the devil is good at is taking a legitimate need and trying to get us to satisfy that need through illegitimate ways. Remember you can pick your sins but you don’t get to pick the consequences. Sometimes we can invite the enemy to play havoc in our lives when we compromise our conscience, when new get into relationships we should not, be in places that we need to avoid, watch stuff that we should be deleting etc.

When we do not live out our calling we can end up on balconies that can ruin our lives like it did to David. We need to get off the balcony and get into the battlefield and get after our destiny. This does not need anyone to preach to you, prophecy or pray for you.
You have to take personal responsibility and live out the Word of God.

This is how we get to living an abundant life. The more we focus on the right things the less energy will be spent on battling.

Will all battles cease? No. We will learn to fight better, stronger and swifter because we now know how to recognize his fingerprints.

When God is taking us to new levels, we have to fight new devils.  The increased measure will be met will greater resistance. Satan does not mind passive Christians. Attacks can often mean that we are doing something right and we have to stand or take ground. There is no neutral ground. Whenever God is pushing us to higher ground there is a battle to take ground just like Joshua in the promised land. It did not come without a fight. The Promised Land as the name suggests came with a promise – that it would be theirs. They just needed to fight the enemy and live uncompromised lives.
So Struggles can strengthen us or knock us out.

Courage to fight happens in community and not in isolation. It is ok to ask for help. We are called to bear each other’s burdens.

One key in Spiritual warfare is obedience and endurance. If God is pointing out a thought pattern, or behavior or lifestyle choice that has got you stuck and you find that you are not winning your battles, you need to do a heart check. Is there something you are stubborn about and unwilling to change it? You need to embrace the disciple and get unstuck.

Monday, May 28, 2018

STRONGER PART 4| THE FINGERPRINTS OF YOUR FOE



I came across a book early this year by Havilah Cunnington titled “Stronger than the Struggle”. I strongly recommend you read it. Much of what I am blogging here is from that book and what I did with a ladies group called Coffee Chats. If you find this useful, please feel free to use this material in a study group you might be leading. The blogs in this series are reflections and a summary of what I got from this fantastic book that I recommend you to buy. Click here for PART 3 of this Blog series



PART 4 - THE FINGERPRINT OF YOUR FOE


I- STEAL
Whenever you see death, destruction, and loss you see the fingerprints or the handiwork of the devil. So the more I understand his methods the better I will be equipped to fend off his fiery flames.

Thieves operate in pairs with a technique called “bump and lift”. So when you are walking on the street, one guy will bump into you and distract you while the other will pick your pocket. The devil uses the same technique in different ways and in different situations.

Remember the one thing the devil is after is to destroy or keep you from accomplishing all God’s great plans for your life. He will do anything and I mean anything to keep you from reaching that goal. He does not want you to grow in your faith or produce the fruit of the spirit in your life. He wants to snatch that from you.
Jesus’ time of ministry on this earth was very short. Out of his 33 years, he was in ministry for only 3. So what he packed into those three years, what he taught and said to his disciples must be very, very important. He knew he was going to leave the earth. However, he did not want to leave us uninformed.  He spoke about the devil and his intentions and we would be wise to listen up.

Many of us have experienced loss – in relationships, health, finance, time etc. These are the ‘bumps” in our lives. If these are the bumps what is his real target.? What is he trying to steal? One would have thought those things: relationships, health, finance are the things being stolen from us. Yes and no.

He uses those to distract us and render us powerless. He wants us to feel useless, condemned. He knows that to get you to stop believing in God will be much harder. So he will try to get you to doubt, and slow down or get distracted from God’s purposes for your life. He will try to neutralize you. He will keep you running in circles over relational issues, health issues if he finds that it is working.

WHAT IS THE SOLUTION?
Jesus promised us something. Someone actually!! The Holy Spirit. He is there to guide, comfort, strengthen, remind, encourage and help us. ( John14:25-27)
He has promised us PEACE. Jesus said do not let your hearts be stirred up or troubled. The Greek word for that is to’ agitate’. It is like being jostled and you drop whatever it is you are holding. Things will come to make us lose a grip on what we are supposed to lay a hold of in God i.e our purpose, our destiny in God.

FEAR is another bump. We are not saved so that we continue to live anxious lives every day. Jesus has made us strong on the inside.

 He promised us PEACE. What is peace? He is called the Prince of Peace. Peace is not a state of mind; peace is a person. The person of Jesus himself.
Is 26:3 He will keep him in perfect peace whose mind is stayed on/leaning on Him. Its like saying Jesus will keep us in himself when our minds are focused on him. He will hold us shelter us in the midst of chaos. Peace is not the absence of trouble. It’s being strengthened by the person of Jesus in the midst of the storm. HE gives us himself to anchor in.

The devil comes to shake you, God comes to steady you to keep you HOPE up.
God is for us. He is not against us. He is our constant help in time of need who will NEVER leave us. We need to keep reminding ourselves of these truths and repeating it to ourselves and thus form new patterns of thinking. Allow Him to breathe life back into you so that you can be made whole again to fight the good fight of faith. Hold onto to PEACE . He is in you. Partner with Him an do not get distracted by the bumps.

2 KILL
When he comes to kill he hopes that you will give up and surrender to his schemes. What is he trying to kill?

He mainly wants to kill God’s plans for your life, God-given dreams that you are waiting to become a reality. You might say, surely this is a bit much! You must be exaggerating. Can it really be that important? What he can’t take away he will make you give it away through a  giving up on a delayed dream, discouragement, distraction,  financial problems, waiting for a relationship to be restored, waiting to get married, wanting that pregnancy to happen and in so many other ways.

 They may even be things that are good but when they are not under the Lordship of Jesus, they could potentially harm you and shipwreck your faith or destiny in God.

 My story -I  know the battle I had to fight for the dream that God put in my heart to write songs for him. Disappointment, discouragement, and being let down by people whom I thought could help me were the traps I fell into. I got stuck. The devil tried to trap me and trick me.

 But God in His rich mercy got me out of that trap and I was able to write again and today I have more than 20 songs completed and a book full of ones I'm working on. These songs are sung at my church. Not only that I am now training other to write songs. That is a kick in his teeth for trying to mess with me.

If this was not so important why do you think the devil went after Peter to capsize his faith? What he underestimated was Jesus prayer to the Father for Peter’s ( and our) preservation in John 17. 

What he underestimated was the forgiveness and redemption we can have in the Cross. Not only was Peter restored, but he went on to full his God-given destiny, as a result, the gospel did go to the ends of the earth. Can you see how powerful your life can be? Yes, YOU. This not for a few people like the late Billy Graham. God can use you to make an impact on this planet, to touch many lives and will count.

Sometimes we do his job for him. We give up
Remember Esau? He sold his birthright for a pot of stew. It sounds silly but this is exactly what he did! This is the spirit of this age. We give up too easily. We live in a world of instant gratification. Noodles in cup, Soup in a cup. Precooked foods, email, and communication with relatives 1000s of miles away are at an instant, plastic money where we can spend what we don’t have and not have to wait till we painstakingly saved every paise/penny.

 When the straight and narrow proves to be too difficult, we opt out or choose to comprise with an easier way or just fold up in apathy. Both way the devil wins and we hand it to him on a silver platter with little or no resistance. It does not have to be this way.

We have an invitation to be powerful. Jesus came to give us an abundant life. If we give in to discouragement, if we give in to fear it will grow bigger and begin to dominate our lives. We will empower those things and enable them to keep us from our destiny. These are daily choices, daily battles. Our success is found in our daily victories.

So a point of reflection: What is the stew in your life? It could be an ill temper, fear, overspending leading to debt, laziness etc.  Whatever it is, deal with iit or it with deal with  you!

FACE YOUR FEARS
Fear is not just an emotion. It is a spirit. We have to fight it or we can become a slave to it. 2Tim 1:7 says that we have not been given a spirit of fear but of power love and of sound mind.

SO WHAT DO WE DO?
You need a plan. How are you going to fight? .Eg) if every time you or a family member falls sick you get gripped by fear you have given the devil a foothold to play havoc in your life. Today you fear a fever, tomorrow every ache in your body and you will be thinking it’s a tumor or cancer. He will make you anxious over every a cough. Fear will overtake you till it paralyzes you and dominates your life.

So use the Word to battle those fearful thoughts do the opposite of what fear wants you to do.
Eg) If the thought of cooking for people and inviting them to your home paralyzes you, just go ahead and do and partner with the truth that you can do all things through Christ who gives you strength.

Let's not make excuses and give mercy or grace to what we are not supposed  to tolerate in our lives. 
 Let us not make excuses for what the Bible does not.
The antidote to the poison of fear is TRUST. FEAR is trust in the wrong kingdom, in the wrong power. We trust God to keep our children, our family safe, to watch over our jobs and finance and our futures.
Lets partner with God and combat fear.



3 – DESTROY
Remember we said God has a destiny over our lives. He wants to use us for his purposes. Do you know that you are called by God? Or has your call originated in man or was it just a good idea? You need to be secure in your call or else the devil will try and shake you and make you doubt, get you into comparison, jealousy, and competition. 

The fact is that we are all called by God. Eph 2:10 tells us that God has prepared good works in advance for us to do. The advance predates even creation. Imagine that! Now it is our job to find out what are these good works God wants us to do. It’s different things for each of us according to the gifts and abilities HE has given us.

The devil is an opportunist and is patient. He will wait until you are a little successful and confident and then he will attempt to destroy your reputation and what God has started in you.
 Know that he cannot read your thoughts but he can see out actions and hear our words. So do not give him ammunition that he can use against you.

Our words have the power of life and death. Prov 18:21The tongue has the power of life and death, and those who love it will eat its fruit.
Rom4:17-18 What we declare our body, soul spirit will respond to.

Think of the times you partnered with a lie. Now replace it with truth and declare it. Declare is pronouncing what you believe rather than what you feel. Eg) If you keep saying that you are “tired”, “fed up”, “angry”, “Frustrated”; guess what? – you will feel exactly that.

If you are going through a season of trial in some area of your life start speaking life to it. Declare what you want to see and start thanking God for it. God did that with Abraham, Gideon, and Peter. He called them something that they had not yet become. They grew into their calling and destiny.

So the strategy is to declare the Truth. Truth speaks of God’s intentions his plan and calling.

Most of the battle is in our mind- what we focus on. This is an internal battle without the enemies help. He may try and plant thoughts in our heads but we have a choice whether we act on it or not. He may plant it through what someone says. But if we act upon it he will use it like ammunition. Eg) someone says something and we misunderstand the intention and assume that person wanted to offend you.
 You can choose to give the person the benefit of the doubt or you can take offense and hit replay in your mind. We do harm to ourselves when we do this. 

The devil is a master at creating disunity, misunderstanding, and friction. He will use those words to cripple us with rejection, fear, discouragement, comparison, jealousy. He will use them as fiery darts against our soul to destroy us if we allow him to.
So now that we are aware of his strategies let look at the TOOLS we have to fight in the next blog. ( To be  continued CLICK HERE for part 5)









Sunday, May 27, 2018

STRONGER - PART 3| KNOW YOUR ENEMY

Stronger Part 3
I came across a book early this year by Havilah Cunnington titled “Stronger than the Struggle”. I strongly recommend you read it. Much of what I am blogging here is from that book and what I did with a ladies group called Coffee Chats. If you find this useful, please feel free to use this material in a study group you might be leading. The blogs in this series are reflections and a summary of what I got from this fantastic book that I recommend you to buy.. Click here for PART 2 of this blog series.

PART3 KNOW YOUR ENEMY
We need to realize that in different seasons of life we will face different challenges.  Remember Jesus has already won the war on our behalf. This struggle is not unique to you but everyone goes through it. We need to know how to fight and fight correctly – fight the right enemy. Fighting this battle well has nothing to do with who you are, your background, education, personality or culture.

In this race of life, you will face trails. Your race is not like anyone else's. How we run this race will determine our rewards. We may lose some battles but that does not define us. You are not a loser. You may have failed in some areas of your life, that does not make you a failure. Success is not the goal. We live in a world that idolizes success. That’s not it. It is about doing God’s will – that is success.

In this battle, no one can take you out. God will always remind you of your destiny and potential. The devil will always remind you of your mistakes and make you feel useless. Which voice are you listening to?

Running well in this race of life is YOUR responsibility. No one can run it for you. Its not your family ’s, pastors, spouse, parent, friend’s responsibility to make you run this race well.

In this chase for success, we are fed two lies. The first is you can be anything you want to be. This is not true is it? God has given us each a measure, shaped us in different ways with a unique gift mix, to become what He wants us to be. Therefore, we need to understand God’s plans and purposes for our lives. And the gift mix that he has given us fits that purpose for our lives like a glove.

The second lie is that we have to be the best in the World. Really? Every day there is someone’s record being broken. Someone will always be better, smarter, more talented, stronger, and faster. Therefore, it is very important to be secure in our identity in God and that our values come from knowing we belong to Him and that we are his sons and daughters. There will always be better preachers, worship leaders, doctors, accountants etc etc. I need to get my identity from who I am and not what I do.

Does this mean that it does not matter how I live? Not at all! I am responsible for being diligent and consistent. Many things will try and hinder and distract us. Jesus did not die on the cross so that you and I could get comfortable with shame, fear or failure. The Bible tells us that God has unimaginable things in store for us, that no eye has seen nor ear has heard. 1Cor. 2:9.

So how do we live this life? We live it with an active living relationship with Jesus. He died so that we could enjoy an abundant life. Hebrews 12:1 reminds us not to get entangled in sin. Its chokes us and hinders us in our spiritual journey. So remember you are running for Gold, a prize to be won in heaven.

Remember the center of the battle is your soul. Success is not something we achieve. Its something we live with on the inside, an attitude we develop. God is more concerned with HOW we are doing than WHAT we are doing. In our struggle, we need to remember that God’s intention toward us is always good. Jesus came to give us abundant life but the enemy wants to steal, kill and destroy.

The focus of our lives is not the battle. God has called you for the purpose.
Our destiny in God is of prime importance. We have been saved for a purpose, to make God known to the ends of the earth. How will God’s glory reach the ends of the earth. Its as each one of us be that salt, light. That is when the earth will be filled with the knowledge and the glory of God even as the waters cover the sea. Can you use why it is so important? I hope you now understand what the devils target is. It has always been to make you ineffective, to stop you or slow you down- to keep you from you destiny. A Christian with his eyes fixed on Jesus running the race unflinchingly is the most formidable enemy of the devil. He does not mind a lukewarm Christian. He minds the ones that are on red-hot for Jesus.

KNOW YOUR ENEMY

Some of us feel we have lost time in our battle or are not battling well. God is a redemptive God. He can redeem lost time and the years the locust have eaten. Colossians 4:5 tells us to make the best of every opportunity. Opportunities make come in the shape of a friend, pastor, family member telling you something you need to hear. God uses different ways to communicate with us. WE have a choice-we respond either to what God is showing us or deny the revelation that God is bringing into your situation.

Understand that the enemy does not want you to have clarity in your situation. He likes to shadow dance and confuse our minds as to what is the real issue. Recognize that diagnosis only tells you what the problem is. It is not the cure. You have to act. You have to embrace the fight.
When you do this remember as we said earlier, the devil is not equal to God. He wanted to be like God but he could never be. The war has been won and we need to partner with the truth that is in the Word of God.

KNOW THE DEVILS STRATEGIES

Winning or losing depends on how well you know your opponent. Do you know whom you are fighting and how he operates? He is a thief, killer destroyer, an accuser, an enemy of our souls. He does not play by the rules. He will strike hard especially when we are vulnerable, weak and down. However, remember he is not invincible

He is sneaky. But we have the mind of Christ and can discern his schemes. He is evil and devious but he is not all-powerful, neither does he all know. We have the truth of God ot expose him. He is not all-knowing. He cannot read our thoughts. Only God can do that. He can hear us so we need to be careful what we say. We need to be diligent in the fight. As we do this, we will get stronger. It’s like exercising our muscle. The more you exercise it the stronger you will get. We have old patterns of thinking. They have formed deep groves in our minds. Getting out of that groove will take some effort. Forming new pathways in our mind and new ways of thinking will take time but it will happen.

When I was going through my own struggles last year, I started to practice declaring truth over the situation. I kept saying each day and cultivated the practice of being thankful. Slowly I changed and so did the situation.

We need to be diligent in the fight because we have an enemy who is relentless, greedy, wicked and will stop at nothing. Comfort has dulled our spiritual senses. We have been lulled into thinking that he does not exist while he wreaks havoc in our lives.

The apostle Paul reminds us not to be ignorant of the devil's schemes. Ignorance will hurt us. Paul reminds us to be alert- for the devil prowls around like a roaring lion.
So, we need to understand that he is a real enemy who does want to destroy us. Have we been caught sleeping? 

One of the chief ways the enemy tries to get us is in our minds and emotions. He tries to drive a wedge between God and us, between other people and ourselves, our brothers our sisters. The devil will attack us in the same place of vulnerability, therefore we can never let our guard down. He knows where exactly to attack you. We need to put on the armor of God and fight. When we do this he cannot win.
We will look at three ways in which the devil tries to attack us in the next blog.  (To be continued CLICK HERE for PART 4)