Wednesday, November 20, 2019
(Thank you, Google, for your image!)
I'm reading along with Courtney from Women Living Well, and the founder of Good Morning Girls (you can find one or the other on Instagram), in a Bible reading plan she came up with for the month of November. I've participated in it for years now, until the last two or three, but this year I joined in again. The point is to read wherever it says to in the plan for that day, and use the SOAK method: Scripture, Observation, Application, Kneel in prayer. The first week was on gratitude, the next week was on meditation, and this third week is on prayer. She encourages you to pray for the peace in your home, and for the ones who live under your roof.
Yesterday I was catching up from last week (story of my life), and I read in Joshua 1:1-9. To know the full story, I encourage you to read it on your own, but I'll help you a little in case you can't do that right now. Moses, the leader of the Israelites, had died, and never got to enter into Jericho, which was the land God had promised to the people of Israel. (They had spent years of slavery in Egypt, and when they were finally able to escape, God led them and provided for their every need.) Moses' knew he wouldn't get to enter into that land, but that his young successor would be the one to lead the Israelites there. After Moses died, Joshua became their next leader, and when you open up to the first chapter in the book of Joshua, God Himself was encouraging Joshua. He was saying to him to be strong and courageous.
The verse I read that jumped out to me yesterday, though, was verse five.
"No one will be able to stand against you as long as you live. I will be with you, just as I was with Moses. I will not leave you or abandon you."
That was something I needed to hear right at the moment I read the verse. I know that God is always with me, and that if He is for me, no one can stand against me (Romans 8:31). God speaks through His word, and He knew at that very moment, that I needed this reminder. I was having some tense moments with someone I'm close to, and when I go through something like that, the enemy runs rampant. I was doubting our relationship, and I was going through all these worse case scenarios in my mind.
I know those are blatant attacks from the enemy himself, and he is good at his job. I never like to give him too much credit, but I think the majority of us walk around life not giving him enough credit, and that is scary. He is real. He is not some little guy in a red suit with horns. He is sneaky, winsome (probably), and the Bible says in 1 Peter 5:8 that he prowls around like a lion, seeking someone to devour. God is good, and only good comes from Him. Anything opposite of that is straight from the enemy. The enemy hates godly relationships and will do anything in his power to tear them apart. I believe most of his success begins with our minds. He cannot cause us to think things, but when we have certain thoughts, he can run with them and torment us. The longer the time goes on with something like this, the easier his job gets.
So, what's the solution?
It's so easy, but it's prayer. In 2 Corinthians 10:5 Paul writes to the believers in Corinth (and us today) to take every thought captive and make it obedient to Christ. What that means to me, is that I stop right where I am and I pray out loud. I tell the Lord that I am taking those crazy thoughts captive and that the enemy has no place in my life. I ask God to help me think on things that are good and TRUE (Philippians 4:8) and to take over in my mind and to calm it down.
And every time, it works. It's not so much what you say, exactly, it's just pouring out your heart to the Lord.
This was all taking place within me on Monday. I read so many different passages that day, and even that was a God thing. My late friend Kari used to call such moments kisses from the King. God knew I would be reading to catch up on this plan I've been reading along with, and He knew He would use those days of catch up to speak into my heart through His word. It was no coincidence, which I don't even believe in, by the way. It was perfectly planned on His part, and I couldn't be more thankful. While I was reading, I was praying, and before the day was half over, He completely resolved the situation, and all was well again. Literally, He moved upon the hearts of both the person and myself. That should never surprise me, that He works like that, but I never want to get over the gratitude of Him intervening like He did for me.
Of course I know that no one will be able to stand against me as long as I live, because I have the power of the living God, His Holy Spirit, dwelling in me. I am His temple, and He dwells within me. He will take care of me, He hears me, and in His perfect timing, He will provide an answer to every trial I ever go through.
I pray you're encouraged today. I pray that God uses these verses I've written to speak into your heart, just like He did to me on Monday. In order to hear from Him, though, first you have to read His word. Don't miss that step, it is of utmost importance. To hear from Him, you must read the Bible. Don't wait a second! Pick yours up and jump back in today.
Love to all.
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