Ephesians 6:12-18 (NLT)
12 For we[a] are not fighting against flesh-and-blood enemies, but against evil rulers and authorities of the unseen world, against mighty powers in this dark world, and against evil spirits in the heavenly places.
13 Therefore, put on every piece of God’s armor so you will be able to resist the enemy in the time of evil. Then after the battle, you will still be standing firm.14 Stand your ground, putting on the belt of truth and the body armor of God’s righteousness. 15 For shoes, put on the peace that comes from the Good News so that you will be fully prepared.[b] 16 In addition to all of these, hold up the shield of faith to stop the fiery arrows of the devil.[c] 17 Put on salvation as your helmet, and take the sword of the Spirit, which is the word of God.18 Pray in the Spirit at all times and on every occasion. Stay alert and be persistent in your prayers for all believers everywhere.[d]
John 10:9-10 (NLT)
9 Yes, I am the gate. Those who come in through me will be saved.[a] They will come and go freely and will find good pastures. 10 The thief’s purpose is to steal and kill and destroy. My purpose is to give them a rich and satisfying life.
Mark 4:15 (NLT)
15 The seed that fell on the footpath represents those who hear the message, only to have Satan come at once and take it away.
Don’t Let Satan Steal Your Joy
On a Sunday evening approximately thirty years ago, I made the decision to be baptized. I remember that Sunday night as though it were yesterday. The joy in my heart was undeniable that night. As church members gave me their warm hugs and congrats, I knew that I had become a part of a huge family that was full of love and support. I truly felt at peace with my decision. To know that I would spend all of the eternity with my awesome God, and to be blessed with these wonderful brothers and sisters in Christ was almost joyfully overwhelming!
As I walked to my car that night full of excitement, it never dawned on me that I had stepped into the middle of a war. Spiritual warfare was the last thing that I would have considered that night. Who knew that the first attack would come so soon? I certainly didn’t.
When I got into my car that night to leave church, it would not start. I had not had any problems with my vehicle leading up to that night. To this day I don’t think that it was a coincidence that this happened on the same night that I was baptized. I know that this was a ploy that the enemy used to rob me of that wonderful joy that I was experiencing. He was angry about my decision and he was declaring war. You see no one expects to accept Christ, get baptized, and immediately get knocked down. The reality is that in a war it is pointless for the enemy to alert you that he is about to attack you. Attacks are only successful when you are caught off guard, or when your defenses are down, and you have not had time to prepare for the attack. I was blindsided and that was ok, because I had just signed up to follow a God that sees all sides and immediately He came to my rescue. Being a soldier in His army definitely has benefits.
There was a sweet couple that was still standing in the church parking lot visiting after church. When I told them that my car would not start, they immediately came over and offered to give me a ride home. This encounter marked the beginning of a wonderful friendship. Another gentleman there at the church was a mechanic, and he offered to come by the next day after he got off from work to take a look at my car. He was true to his word and within two days things were back to normal and I was driving my car again with no problems.
I was a single woman, in a new city, at a new church only knowing a few people that I had become acquainted with, but God had my back.
Attacks from the enemy are inevitable if you are a Christian, and as Christians, we must be willing to support one another through the rough times that are sure to come, just as these wonderful brothers and sisters supported me. We should especially offer to be there to encourage our new babes in Christ when they are struggling from the wiles of the enemy and their roots have not grown deep yet. Encouragement goes long ways when you are bombarded with one challenge after the other and someone reminds you that with prayer, and God’s help you will weather your storm.
In spiritual warfare your most important weapon is prayer. When you are under attack you must be relentless in your prayer life. You have to use spiritual weapons to win a spiritual war. Every time you call on the name of Jesus and you stand on His powerful scriptures it’s another blow to the enemies plans against you.
The most important thing for you to remember is that Satan has No authority over you. He can do no more than God allows him to do. Satan will continue however to disrupt, distract, discourage and destroy anything good in your life. Don’t focus on what Satan is doing, put your faith and trust in what God is doing in your life and what He will continue to do if you will just lean on Him. Don’t allow Satan to rob you of the joy you have in Christ. “The joy of the Lord is your strength.”
Be Blessed and be Joyful today and every day!
James 1:2-4 (NLT)
2 Dear brothers and sisters,[a] when troubles of any kind come your way, consider it an opportunity for great joy. 3 For you know that when your faith is tested, your endurance has a chance to grow. 4 So let it grow, for when your endurance is fully developed, you will be perfect and complete, needing nothing.
Nehemiah 8:10 (NLT)
10 And Nehemiah[a] continued, “Go and celebrate with a feast of rich foods and sweet drinks and share gifts of food with people who have nothing prepared. This is a sacred day before our Lord. Don’t be dejected and sad, for the joy of the Lord is your strength!”