Be sober-minded; be watchful. Your adversary the devil prowls around like a roaring lion, seeking someone to devour.
1 Peter 5:8 (ESV)
I thank God for the courage He gives me to be bold and plain-spoken. It is a fleeting anointing, impermanent like the miracle of sunrise. I make every effort to be honest in a caring and thoughtful way. However, it is those moments of deep honesty and fearless bravery that I am reminded that I AM NOT FULLY THOSE THINGS on my own. (But God.)
Here is what we should understand about the enemy.
"He’s all about making noise and fuss
to distract you and me from God’s plan…"
Today I experienced the precise intersection of messages from God in order to declare “I am easily distracted, but not for long.” My writer friends inspire me in so many ways. So often, it is not about the writing but in the living that they do so. One is undertaking a brave series on life’s battlefields, while another wrote about distractions from seeking God. Only because I had just noted my congratulations to one on being brave enough was I sufficiently emboldened to be so myself.
I believe that we have far greater power to inflict damage upon ourselves than other people have the power to hurt us. Our own doubt, fear, insecurity, any weapon taken into the hands of the enemy is sufficiently insidious to do great harm. Here’s the thing. I have never read words written for the express purpose of insulting me. Then why do I get my feelings hurt??
I get my feelings hurt, we all do, when we are easily distracted. Here is what we should understand about the enemy.
He’s the one that doesn’t like it when I’m hot on the pursuit of beauty, especially the holy kind…He’s all about making noise and fuss to distract you and me from God’s plan…
I almost let a red herring trip me up. I narrowly avoided being wounded by a non-existent insult BUT I didn’t miss my blessing. I was easily distracted, BUT NOT FOR LONG. (But God.) The last time I experienced something like this, it took me nearly two weeks to recover while I ranted and raved in the meantime. The praise I need to share here is how far God has brought me. The torment in my head lasted about two minutes, and then I got busy.
I got busy calling the enemy out by name. I had an honest conversation with myself about the things that were of God, and about the rest of the junk that does not matter. Shaking off the momentary distraction, I silenced the ugly whispering voice; I declare that it has no power over me. I am called, not by nasty whispers, but by my Father to be free. I must remember that the whisperer, the trickster, is lying again. It is what he does. I’m not listening. When we listen, when we hear, when we internalize, he can stop talking, because his work is done. I got easily distracted, but I am over it now. I chose instead to worship with a friend, to thank her for challenging me to hear God and not the noise, and now I have a holy praise. I am back in pursuit of beauty, you know, “the holy kind.” (ooh, I really like that)
Here is the lesson. Be sober. Be watchful. Keep your guard up. I am not saying that you won’t be distracted, but do not stay there. Distraction is a trick, and you are smarter than that. There is one more thing. Get and STAY in community. You can do a lot of damage in your own head. Christian friends who love you and pray for you will tell you when you need a reality check. And they will laugh with you. And let you get over yourself. And then you move on.
To God be the Glory.