Have you ever viewed the lives of other people and thought, “that will never happen to me, or that will never happen in our family?” I felt that way about cancer. In 1989, when the doctor informed us that my husband had two cancerous tumors in his colon, my emotions cried, “No, this can't be true. This isn't happening to us!”
One evening, just a few days before our oldest daughter's wedding was to take place, we received a phone call. Deborah had been in a serious car accident and was being rushed to the hospital. With anxious hearts and spiked adrenaline, we arrived at the emergency room. As I gazed at our daughter, covered in blood, and crying in pain, my emotions recoiled in protest. This cannot be Deborah! That can't be happening to our daughter! But it was happening.
Many have had the same thought when they first discovered their child or loved one was addicted to alcohol, pornography, or drugs, had an incurable disease, had just been arrested, or had gone missing in action. There is a long list of events that we never expect to happen to us or our family, and yet, they do.
Many factors can lead to the above scenarios, but I want to draw your attention to one. We are involved in a serious spiritual war. “For we wrestle not against flesh and blood, but against principalities, against powers, against the rulers of the darkness of this world, against spiritual wickedness in high places” (Ephesians 6:12 KJV).
Our enemy Satan and his angels are cunning and powerful, with one purpose in mind—destruction. Satan is out to destroy testimonies, marriages, families, churches, and individual lives. “Be sober, be vigilant; because your adversary the devil, as a roaring lion, walketh about seeking whom he may devour:” (1 Peter 5:8 KJV).
A young man was enthusiastic, energetic, and highly motivated. He was determined to stand true to his leader and his cause regardless of the cost. He even boasted that he would never deny the one he so highly respected. Yet, only a few hours later this young man hung his head in shame as he heard the cock crow and realized he had failed; he had denied his Lord, not once, but three times. For Peter, “never” had become “now”.
We are prone to become over-confident in ourselves and to forget we are still flesh and blood, with weaknesses and blind spots. We, in our own strength, are no match for Satan and cannot protect ourselves. Praise the Lord that we don't have to rely on ourselves. We have Jesus Christ and His Word. “Submit yourselves therefore to God. Resist the devil, and he will flee from you” (James 4:7 KJV). The key is realizing our dependence and accepting His Lordship.
Stay alert to the enemy and keep your shield of faith polished and in front of you. Know God's word, practice using it, and keep it sharp and close at hand. When “never” events become “now” in your life, do not be afraid.
“...be strong in the Lord, and in the power of his might. Put on the whole armour of God, that ye may be able to stand against the wiles of the devil” (Ephesians. 6:10-11).
Lord, forgive me when I forget how much I need you. Help me to stay alert, to yield daily to your Lordship and to rely on the power of your Holy Spirit. Thank you for never leaving me alone or throwing me aside when I fail. Thank you for your loving care of me and help me to honor you with my life.