How many blogs and articles have been written about the craziness that is 2020? Because all of us have gone through a level of trauma this past year I had to look up all that has happened, and it was staggering…
- Covid19 Pandemic
- The Death of Kobe Bryant
- Murdering Hornets
- Impeachment Trials for President Trump
- The Death of George Floyd
- A Star went missing
- The Death of Breonna Taylor
- Protests in most Major Cities
- Wildfires on the West Coast
- Election Year
- Harvey Weinstein convicted
- The Death of Ruth Bader Ginsburg
- Did I mention it is an Election Year…
Honestly, this just scratches the surface of what has happened in less than a year’s time. Every one of us have watched many of these things play out in the News, our Newsfeeds our cities and some our very neighborhoods and with those that we love and care for most. For me personally it has been a rough year. My grandmother who was very special to me passed away and because of the pandemic we were unable to attend her funeral, both my daughters are now in middle school (not the easiest thing in the world) and like many, my job looks very different than at the first of the year. Don’t get me wrong none of this compares to what many others have faced around the country and the world. Because so many are going through so much I wonder if that’s why God woke me up at 3am for 5 straight nights…
It was the end of April and I was ending my night with my normal routine of looking at the latest Corona Virus Updates and praying for those who had been affected and those suffering. I feel asleep and then at 3am I woke up and could not go back to sleep. I have heard of many Christian leaders talking about how they knew the Spirit of God was waking them up to pray but that had never happened to me. I didn’t go and pray I went downstairs got some water and tried laying back down on the couch. After about 5 minutes I got really hot and began sweat. I got back up turned on the fan, checked the air conditioning and even set it lower than normal. I laid back down and I couldn’t stop thinking about what our world was facing and going through. Instead of doing the right thing and praying and asking God to intervene I just tossed and turned and kept asking myself, “Why am I so restless?”
I went through the exact same thing two nights in a row except on the third night I knew God was getting my attention. I turned on the lamp beside my couch and grabbed a pen, my journal and started pouring through the scriptures. I found myself reading the Lord’s Prayer over and over again and there was one phrase that kept standing out to me.
Matthew 6:13 “Do not lead us into temptation but deliver us from the evil one”
With everything that is happening how can God deliver us from evil or the evil one? The word “deliver” is a very aggressive word in the original language. It actually means snatch, that we are asking God to snatch us from the clutches and strong hold of everything evil. Remember this is Jesus answering the question from his closest friends when they asked, “Lord teach us to pray!” So, he is telling his disciples that they should start by asking God for deliverance. Some people much smarter than me see this as a parallel. Meaning that God does not lead us into temptation according to many different scriptures (one example James 1:13) but what God does best is bring rescue and hope in the midst of our most trying times and darkest hour. I don’t know about you, but I need that. I need to be protected and empowered. I need to be rescued and reassured. I need to find myself where I am desperately dependent on the power and grace of God. That way I am safe from myself and the evil one.
I know it’s almost Halloween and some think that that the devil is as unrealistic as a kid dressed in a costume. Jesus would say otherwise. He says, “the evil one comes to kill steal and destroy. The Evil one has as a mode of operation and it’s very clear…
Harden Your Heart
The very first words ever spoken by the evil one is, “Did God really say?” He speaks that to each one of us and he will have us question our logic, ourselves and even God’s Word. Have you ever done something you knew and felt was wrong and then over time justified it and now you are convinced it’s ok? That is the very definition of a heart becoming hardened.
Promotes Immersion in Sensuality
Years ago I was watching a movie called The Devils Advocate and at the end Al Pacino who played Satan is talking with Keanu Reeves (a lawyer). Pacino says this, “I have nurtured every appetite from man from the beginning, and I have never judged him for it…” Those words describe desire for each one of us in a dark and eerie way.
Divide and Discourage the Followers of Jesus
From church splits to the firing of pastors because of the smallest thing, to the individual believer thinking they are just not good enough or deceiving them when they believe that God is angry with them. The Evil one is crafty and very successful at discouraging and dividing the church of Jesus.
Think Small Live Small
When we doubt the difference we can make or the impact that we can have with the help of God, Satan celebrates because our lives have become smaller. The passion and dreams that are from God have been diminished.
Procrastination with Committing to God
When I get older my life will be different, when I have kids God will be a priority, I can beat this addiction on my own, I will put off today what I can do tomorrow. These words bring nothing but joy to him who wants and enjoys our spiritual destruction.
May everyone who is reading this and those who are not, realize the MO that the evil one uses on each of us. May we experience and know that only God can bring rescue, freedom and deliverance from…
Crockett, and his wife Natalie, have been in ministry over 18 years and they have been primarily focused in the Southeast region. While in college they served in churches in Virginia and Kentucky and after graduation they were full-time in Ohio and Atlanta. Crockett has always been burdened for churches to ” do whatever it takes” to introduce people to Jesus Christ. This led him and his family to move to Hickory, North Carolina and start Vintage City Church. Crockett has served on the boards of different church planting networks, coached multiple planters and is obsessed with helping the church live on mission. Crockett and Natalie have three amazing kids who are sold out to church planting. Crockett’s role at Stadia is to build relationships with churches and planters in the Southeast region and help Stadia plant more churches that intentionally care for children in the U.S and around the world.