May 9

Encouragement for Today

 

“Be Alert, Not Consumed”

Ramona Davis, Proverbs 31 Speaker Team Member, Prayer Ministry Coordinator

 

Key Verse:

 

2 Thessalonians 3:3, “The Lord is faithful, who will establish you and guard you from the evil one.” (NKJ)

 

Devotion:

 

Screaming for help, I fell over myself trying to get away from a gigantic spider. I am not normally afraid of spiders but this was one I have never encountered before. It was as large as the palm of my hand with long, grey-blue legs. It sat still in the middle of a web hanging over a corner of my flower garden.

 

My neighbor came to my rescue and inspected the spider. Through a grin he said in his slow southern drawl, “It can’t hurt you, but it can sure make you hurt yourself, huh?” I laughed at his remark but it stuck with me.

 

Many Christians are overly concerned and anxious about the devil and his traps to ensnare us. They go through their days declaring every trial, sorrow, and challenge a work of the devil against them. Some may even go as far as to blame him for the tiniest of irritations. They have become so consumed with the enemy that they have taken their eyes off of Jesus. When this happens, the enemy hasn’t hurt you but he has made you hurt yourself.

 

I worked in banking for many years. To train new bank tellers how to detect counterfeit money, they studied the real thing. They spent hours studying and learning about the characteristics of real money. By focusing on genuine money, counterfeit money can be detected quicker and easier.

 

We could learn a lot about our daily Christian walk from these bank tellers. We should spend more time with Jesus learning about His character than we do focusing on the enemy. Then we will be more alert to the enemy’s tactics. We’ll be able to detect his work quicker and easier.

 

The Bible tells us to be alert because the enemy does prowl around looking for someone to devour. It instructs us to take a firm stand against him and to be strong in our faith, knowing that He who is in us is greater than the enemy. We should not be consumed with the enemy; instead we should keep our eyes on Jesus.

 

Jesus tells us to have peace of heart and mind. He said we would have many trials and sorrows, but He instructs us to cheer up, because He has already overcome the world. We can’t have peace of heart and mind if we are overly concerned with the enemy. We can only have peace of heart and mind when we are focused on Jesus.

 

My Prayer for Today:

 

Dear Lord, forgive me when I have been so consumed with the enemy that I have taken my eyes off You. Help me remember that You are in me, and You are greater than the enemy. Help me to be alert, dressed in Your armor, and to keep my eyes on You. Thank You, and I pray these things in the mighty Name of Jesus. Amen.

 

Application Steps:

 

Read about each piece of God’s armor in Ephesians 6:13-18.

Each morning, mentally dress in God’s armor and take time to pray for Christians everywhere.

 

Reflection Points:

 

Have you been overly consumed with the enemy?

 

Are you standing firm in the faith that He who is in you is greater than he who is in the world?

 

What are your heartaches and sorrows? Have you shared them with Jesus?

 

Power Verses:

 

1 Peter 5:8-9, “Be careful! Watch out for attacks from the devil, your great enemy. He prowls around like a roaring lion, looking for some victim to devour. Take a firm stand against him, and be strong in your faith. Remember that your Christian brothers and sisters all over the world are going through the same kind of suffering you are.”  (NLT)

 

Ephesians 6:11-13, “Put on all of God’s armor so that you will be able to stand firm against all strategies and tricks of the devil. For we are not fighting against people made of flesh and blood, but against the evil rulers and authorities of the unseen world, against those mighty powers of darkness who rule this world, and against wicked spirits in the heavenly realms. Use every piece of God’s armor to resist the enemy in the time of evil, so that after the battle you will still be standing firm.” (NLT)

 

John 16:33, “These things I have spoken to you, that in Me you may have peace. In the world you will have tribulation, but be of good cheer, I have overcome the world.” (NKJ)

 

Colossians 1:13-14, “He has delivered us from the power of darkness and conveyed us into the kingdom of the Son of His love, in whom we have redemption through His blood, the forgiveness of sins.” (NKJ)

 

 

Additional Resources:

 

Message of the Month Club

http://proverbs31.gospelcom.net/resources/messageclub.html

 

Becoming a Woman Who Listens to God, by Sharon Jaynes

http://proverbs31.gospelcom.net/resources/womanlistens.html

 

Who Holds the Key to Your Heart, by Lysa TerKeurst

http://proverbs31.gospelcom.net/resources/key.html