One of the things we read and talked about this week is how Satan tries to fill our minds with voices that speak lies to us. They whisper that we are not good and are unworthy of God’s love. He tells us we are not talented enough for God to use us, or that we are not smart enough to know God in a deep way. He fills us with doubt, discouragement, fear and disbelief in order to hinder us in our Christian walk. So I want to focus on 3 areas of our lives where Satan likes to wreak havoc.
1. He will mess with our thoughts
Satan will do all he can to mess with our heads. Sadly, he doesn’t have to use much to mess us up. It can be a passing comment by a friend or family member, it can be a glimpse in the mirror, or an attempt at something that fails. He will tempt us to think that what is true is false, what is right is wrong, or what is good is bad. He weaves these webs of doubt and disbelief so that we take our eyes off of Jesus and focus on ourselves. It corrupts our knowledge of God and always leads to weak faith and ungodliness.
When thoughts or inclinations contrary to the will and ways of God creep in, many dear Christians mistake these miserable orphans for their own children, and take upon themselves the full responsibility for these carnal passions. So deftly does the devil slip his own thoughts into the saints’ bosom that by the time they begin to whimper, he is already out of sight. And the Christian, seeing no one but himself at home, supposes these misbegotten notions are his own. So he bears the shame himself, and Satan has accomplished his purpose.
2. He will mess with your quiet time
Satan knows something that we often forget, and that is the power and effectiveness of the word of God. He knows that in it we not only find truth, but The Truth. Therefore he will do all he can to keep us from the Scriptures. The other thing Satan knows about the word of God is that it is his “kryptonite”–the sword that can and will defeat him. John Piper points out that “many Christians fail to realize that we can’t draw the sword from someone else’s scabbard. If we don’t wear it, we can’t wield it. If the Word of God does not abide in us (Jn. 15:7), we will reach for it in vain when the enemy strikes.” Not matter what we face, no matter how we feel, we must make sure we are in God’s word so that our sword is sharpened and ready for battle. With a sword like that the devil cannot overcome you!
“It is written.” Stand upon it, and if the devil were fifty devils in one, he could not overcome you. On the other hand, if you leave “It is written,” Satan knows more about reasoning than you do. He is far older, has studied mankind very thoroughly, and knows all our weak points. Therefore, the contest will be an unequal one. Do not argue with him but wave in his face the banner of God’s Word. Satan cannot endure the infallible truth, for it is death to the falsehood of which he is the father.
3. He will mess with your prayer life
All prayer requires of us is that we simply, truly, talk to God through Jesus Christ. But many of us struggle with this. We don’t know what to say, we feel like our prayers are not reaching the ears of God. Sometimes we find ourselves distracted and bored. How many of us are truly excited and can’t wait to attend our church prayer meetings? How many times do we try to pray only to have all kinds of other thoughts flood our minds? Satan has done a great job convincing us that prayer is a drag and because of this many of us have weak prayer lives. We cry out when we are desperate or want something, but we rarely just talk to him about our day, our life, our desires and his greatness.
Few indeed are to be found who pray: there are many who go down on their knees, and say a form perhaps, but few who pray; few who cry out to God, few who call on the Lord, few who seek as if they wanted to find, few who knock as if they hungered and thirsted, few who wrestle, few who strive with God earnestly for an answer, few who give Him no rest, few who continue in prayer, few who pray always without ceasing and do not grow weak. Yes: few pray! It is just one of the things assumed as a matter of course, but seldom practiced; a thing which is everybody’s business, but in fact hardly anybody performs.
Satan will never give up distracting us with lies, false pleasures, and a plethora of idols to replace God. We must be aware of his tactics and fight against him.
We must guard our minds, dive deep into our quiet times, and persevere in prayer–but not to earn more of God’s love. You see, the devil is right when he tells us that we are unworthy of God’s love. We are. Yet, God loves us anyway and eternally. We guard our minds, dive deep into our quiet times, and persevere in prayer because in this we see the love of God more clearly.
Looking To Jesus,