There is a devil and right now he’s roaming the earth looking for anything he can consume.
Be sober, be vigilant; because your adversary the devil walks about like a roaring lion, seeking whom he may devour.
1 Peter 5:8
Is he eating up your family?
Good intentions are not enough to stop him. Good living is not enough. In fact, the devil isn’t threatened by “good” people. This is because people who think they are good are usually filled with pride, and pride is what he thrives on.
For all that is in the world—the lust of the flesh, the lust of the eyes, and the pride of life—is not of the Father but is of the world.
1 John 2:16
He loves to use the pride of being good as a way to get his foot in the door so he can blind us. Then he reaches in to grab us by the throat.
He laughs as he watches prideful family members fight and scratch. He rolls on the floor as he watches ambition leave people weak and unable to resist sexual immorality and substance abuse.
There is also another thing that gives him great satisfaction–false humility. This one is great camouflage for excuses. Under this guise people don’t have to try to do anything that might make them look “prideful.” The devil considers “humble” families his easiest work; all he has to do is sit back and watch the walls cave in.
Haven’t we had enough? Aren’t we tired of his wickedness?
Jesus said this:
The thief does not come except to steal, and to kill, and to destroy.
I once knew a young woman who loved the Lord dearly. She married a man who also loved the Lord, and both of them set out to create a family that would be a little bit of God’s kingdom on earth.
However, there were a number of obstacles they had to overcome; pieces of the past tried to take over their present and their future. For one thing, both of them were slaves to spiritual pride and they did not understand the grace of God.
As time went on the darkness they had inside began to take over their home. At one point the young woman was faced with a decision. Would she listen to the voices who were telling her to give up and give in? Would she believe the lie that there was a better life waiting on the other end of divorce?
She told me there were times when she felt like there was no hope, that she was abandoned, both by her husband and by God. She also knew where these thoughts were coming from, and one time she stood and pointed her finger at the devil and said, “No, devil, you will not have my family. There will not be an exploded marriage with blood and broken hearts trailing after. The buck stops here.”
Then she cried out to God, expectantly in faith, believing He would help her. She learned about what real grace and love (not the “churchy” kinds) look like. She started to understand that Christ’s type of love can never be about what others may think. It can’t even think about how everything effects the “self.” It can only set people free when it strips itself of pride, just as Christ stripped himself to become our Savior.
The devil had to back down because she had humbled herself and stepped behind the testimony of Christ.
For thus says the High and Lofty One
Who inhabits eternity, whose name is Holy:
“I dwell in the high and holy place,
With him who has a contrite and humble spirit,
To revive the spirit of the humble,
And to revive the heart of the contrite ones.
Humility is what repels the evil one.
Therefore submit to God. Resist the devil and he will flee from you.
True humility comes we have done all and we have nothing; no strength, no plans, just weakness and dependence upon Him. In fact, that is the definition of true humility:
A truly humble person is not lazy, just obedient. Sometimes the word from God will be wait, sometimes run, other times ACT!
Are you in a battle right now? You are not alone. If you are in any way attempting to live a life completely surrendered to Christ, you will experience resistance. The devil will attempt to thwart you at every step, anywhere you have a bit of pride he will pounce.
But he always overplays his hand. It is in the midst of the resistance that we find blessing after blessing. Our resolve is only strengthened as trials wake us up and put us on high alert.
As we trust and obey, we realize the victory that is ours in Christ!
Now thanks be to God who always leads us in triumph in Christ, and through us diffuses the fragrance of His knowledge in every place.
2 Corinthians 2:14
Because it is when we are at our lowest, when we have finally exhausted all of our own ideas, that His grace kicks in:
And He said to me, “My grace is sufficient for you, for My strength is made perfect in weakness.” Therefore most gladly I will rather boast in my infirmities, that the power of Christ may rest upon me. Therefore I take pleasure in infirmities, in reproaches, in needs, in persecutions, in distresses, for Christ’s sake. For when I am weak, then I am strong.
2 Corinthians 12:9-10
The key to overcoming is to do these things:
Hide in God.
Oh, how great is Your goodness,
Which You have laid up for those who fear You,
Which You have prepared for those who trust in You
In the presence of the sons of men!
You shall hide them in the secret place of Your presence
From the plots of man;
You shall keep them secretly in a pavilion
From the strife of tongues.
He who dwells in the secret place of the Most High
Shall abide under the shadow of the Almighty.
I will say of the Lord, “He is my refuge and my fortress;
My God, in Him I will trust.”
Surely He shall deliver you from the snare of the fowler
And from the perilous pestilence.
He shall cover you with His feathers,
And under His wings you shall take refuge;
His truth shall be your shield and buckler.
You shall not be afraid of the terror by night,
Nor of the arrow that flies by day,
Nor of the pestilence that walks in darkness,
Nor of the destruction that lays waste at noonday.
A thousand may fall at your side,
And ten thousand at your right hand;
But it shall not come near you.
Only with your eyes shall you look,
And see the reward of the wicked.
Draw your vitality and nourishment from His Word.
He sent His word and healed them,
And delivered them from their destructions.
So He humbled you, allowed you to hunger, and fed you with manna which you did not know nor did your fathers know, that He might make you know that man shall not live by bread alone; but man lives by every word that proceeds from the mouth of the Lord.
Fight the fight of faith.
For though we walk in the flesh, we do not war according to the flesh. For the weapons of our warfare are not carnal but mighty in God for pulling down strongholds, casting down arguments and every high thing that exalts itself against the knowledge of God, bringing every thought into captivity to the obedience of Christ
2 Corinthians 10:3-5
above all, taking the shield of faith with which you will be able to quench all the fiery darts of the wicked one.
A practical, tangible way to fight the fight of faith is to make a physical demonstration of the cancellation of the devil’s plans and a declaration of God’s plans for your family.
This was suggested to us to do recently by our pastor. We actually held a little ceremony. Our pastor told us to write out the “legacy” of evil in our family and destroy the paper somehow, either by burning, shredding, or some other means.
Well, we didn’t want to start a fire, and we didn’t feel as though shredding would be enough. I ended up writing out the devil’s plans for our family on toilet paper (quite appropriate, wouldn’t you say?). We then gathered together and read the words out loud as we in turn dropped each square into the toilet and then “whoosh” we flushed them down!
Afterwards we read the new legacy, the plans that God has for us all.
For I know the thoughts that I think toward you, says the Lord, thoughts of peace and not of evil, to give you a future and a hope.
Here is a sample just like the one we wrote:
We printed our new legacy out on parchment and then we laminated enough copies to put one up in each bathroom of the house.
I know this brings tremendous results because of the track record of God’s working in our family. However, this was not sorcery; we did not see any instant results. This was not a way to manipulate God so that He would do our bidding. This was not about our wishes. We were simply cooperating in prayer and faith with His will, done in His time and in His way.
I hope this encourages you not to accept the devil’s plans for you and your family.
You do not have to receive the accusations, pronouncements, and other attacks, no matter where they come from. You can stand in the power of the name of Jesus and take back what the devil has stolen and through faith you can begin to renew and restore that which has been destroyed. Always dependent on God’s power, then making sure to give Him all the glory.
So I will restore to you the years that the swarming locusthaseaten, The crawling locust, The consuming locust, And the chewing locust, My great army which I sent among you.