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When It Feels Like the Enemy has Won

This article was written at least five years ago but I believe that it may offer some comfort to some of us who may be feeling some kind of way  in light of the election results. The portions in red were added today, the rest of the article is exactly how it was written many years ago. I pray it blesses you. 

Have you ever felt like the enemy has won? Maybe you have been praying over a situation or a person for some time now and you still haven’t seen an ounce of change or even a spark of hope? Or maybe you’ve witnessed seemingly unsaved, wicked people “prosper” every day while you continue to struggle? I know I have and if you have, it doesn’t mean you are a horrible person when you feel defeated or deflated by the Devil but it does mean you need to get your faith back in check and start looking at your circumstance through spiritual eyes instead of your physical ones…Let’s talk!


While praying over this subject and getting real with God, I asked the Lord, "Why does it seem sometimes like the enemy has the upper hand in my life  and why does it seem like the Devil is laughing at my pain as if the victory promised in Your Word is so far away?"  I can tell you this- any time you ask God a question, you need to prepare your heart for the answer and know it’s probably not going to be the answer you expected or wanted but it is always perfect and true. There are reasons why it seems like the enemy has won and if we want to turn the tides of our battles, we must first understand key concepts about our relationship with Christ.


So why does the Devil sometimes seem victorious in our lives? Here are four correctable reasons why…


1. Christian’s don’t realize they are not impervious to pain!
Christians want perpetual happiness, no struggles, perfect relationships with a constant flow of monetary and materialistic “blessings”, and preferably to be in good health at all times. This is why Christians don’t know how to respond when they disagree with their spouses, can’t find a soul mate, get hit by the economy, or get sick in their bodies. In 2 Corinthians 6:3-8 Paul reminds us of the suffering he endured while he was engaged in a faultless ministry! Paul states that he exemplified God in everything he did yet he “had hardships and calamities of every kind” (2 Corinthians 6: 4) The very first thing we need to remember when the enemy seems to have the upper hand is that although God allows our suffering, His power is released in our struggle and He is always with us.
Trust God with the outcome of this election

 2. Christians spend a lot of time trying to manipulate their situations and then get mad when God feels far away from our problems.

God's strength is what we need to rely on in our struggles, not our own. When it feels like the enemy is in control, you know it’s time to let go! Surrendering completely to God means trusting God’s will above your own desires and sometimes that is very difficult to do. In times of troubles what we tend to do is: complain, worry, engage, justify our rude behaviors and move in our own strength. What God wants us to do can be seen in James 5:13-18…PRAY! God wants us to pray in our hardships and to give praises. God wants us to pray in faith in our sickness and to repent of our sins. When you release your burdens to God and let go, what we see in our physical eyes as being “weak” is truly spiritually “strong”.

Pray perpetually for our nation  

3. Christians misidentify pain and the purpose for suffering in our lives.

Christians will often confuse the consequences of living disobedient lives outside of God’s will with purposeful suffering. God tells us in His Word that in our suffering, His grace is sufficient but we are looking for grace in our mucks of madness! I can summarize this in one sentence- Stop praying for relief in your sinful lifestyle and start praying instead for a spirit of righteousness. There are certain Christian behaviors that we too often engage in and then when our lives start to reflect our decisions, we scream for relief. You are looking for God to bless you in your dirt when God has already offered to wipe you clean with the blood of Jesus if you repent and change your life. So if you’re miserable in your current relationship but you’re mean spirited, unforgiving, cheating, engaging outside of marriage, refusing to change, etc.-You are not suffering, you are experiencing the life you chose for yourself when you rejected Christ. With that being said...

Now true, purposeful suffering for Christ’s sake as endured by the Apostle Paul is a beautiful thing. When we endure persecution for NOT engaging in negativity, NOT deciding to act out against others and for choosing NOT to rebel against God by taking our situations into our own hands we unleash an opportunity to release God’s power in us. In these instances, we are drawn closer to God through our suffering. Suffering is not an automatic indication of the Devil winning; in fact, oftentimes its the means to drawing closer to God! 

Let's repent and rest in God's DIVINE WILL as a nation.

4. A fourth revelation is a lack of faith and belief in God’s sovereign power.

I’ll add to this our uncanny ability to pull the Scripture out of context because following God’s Word fully requires some work on our part. We believe our problems are bigger than God! I once heard an expression “Stop telling God how big your problems are and start telling your problems how big your God is! ”What an amazing perspective to share! How can you expect God's divine intervention when you don't truly believe in your heart that God is able to intervene on your behalf? Hebrews 11:6 tells us it is IMPOSSIBLE to please God without faith and in Mark 11:22-25, Jesus told His disciples, “Have faith in God. I tell you the truth, you can say to this mountain, “May you be lifted up and thrown into the sea.” And it will happen. But you must really believe and have no doubt in your heart. (Underlined and highlighted to show emphasis) I tell you, you can pray for anything, and if you believe that you’ve received it, it will be yours. (PAY ATTENTION TO THIS PART!) But when you are praying, first forgive anyone you are holding a grudge against, so your Father in heaven will forgive your sins too.


In Scripture we learn that having faith is not optional it is a command from our Savior! We learn that faith requires the fullness of belief in our hearts; we learn that God’s blessings are boundless and far reaching and we further learn that God requires us to forgive and give up every grudge so that we can to be forgiven. Nowhere in scripture will you see that God is the rewarder of sin yet we insist on requesting God's presence outside of repentance for our sins. We know that God loves all of His children but His blessings flow on to those who diligently seek Him!

So when you are in a place of doubt and believe that Satan has somehow managed to get the upper hand in your life- don’t believe it! God is always in control. God is merciful. God has a plan for your life!

As Christians we will be leading the healing process created out of this civil divide. We must ask God's forgiveness and give up every wicked imagination and grudge we hold against our opposing Christian and community members. We cannot go before the throne of God with doubt, fear, anger and discord in our hearts regardless of how much we can justify it. I truly believe God will be looking at how His own children are going to behave after this particular election...will we have faith, keep hope, trust in His will, pray for our national leaders, and rest in His sovereign will or will we rebel by holding anger, animosity, disbelief, fear, and discontentment in our hearts. No part of the latter and faith cannot co-exist so family we need to arise as those who never loses because we live in Christ! I wrote this original article about 5 years ago and this morning I found myself scrambling to read it. I hope that sharing it with you offers you all the love and comfort I'm sending your way. It wasn't a slogan, we are stronger together!


I pray this has been a blessing to you and if you would like to add to this list, send it in and we can talk about it!


God bless,

Nidicka


Scripture to pray and contemplate:

Jeremiah 29:11 (NLT)

11 For I know the plans I have for you,” says the Lord. “They are plans for good and not for disaster, to give you a future and a hope.


2 Corinthians 12:7-10 (NLT)

7 even though I have received such wonderful revelations from God. So to keep me from becoming proud, I was given a thorn in my flesh, a messenger from Satan to torment me and keep me from becoming proud.

8 Three different times I begged the Lord to take it away. 9 Each time he said, “My grace is all you need. My power works best in weakness.” So now I am glad to boast about my weaknesses, so that the power of Christ can work through me. 10 That’s why I take pleasure in my weaknesses, and in the insults, hardships, persecutions, and troubles that I suffer for Christ. For when I am weak, then I am strong.

.

 

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