by Charles R. Swindoll
As an ex-marine I am often the brunt of jokes told by ex-dogfaces and ex-swabbies. Since my outfit is viewed as the guys with more muscles than brains, the jokes usually portray leathernecks as disciplined yet dull, brawny oxen with IQs about six points above a plant. I heard another hilarious one last weekend at a men's conference I attended.
In America they say, "It's 10:00. Do you know where your children are?"
In France they say, "It's 10:00. Do you know where your wife is?"
In Italy they say, "It's 10:00. Do you know where your car is?"
In the marines they say, "It's 10:00. Do you know what time it is?"
Marines aren't the only ones notorious for being thick and tired of life. Evangelical Christians run a close second!
We get our theological ducks in a row, we make sure our eternal destination is sealed in a fireproof safe, we surround ourselves with a predictable schedule that protects us from contamination with the lost world, and then, like a 600-pound grizzly, we settle down for a long winter's snooze.
Only one problem. The battle continues to rage, no matter what the season. Whether we choose to believe it or not.
It is so easy to forget that our adversary, like our Advocate, neither slumbers nor sleeps. With relentless, unslacking energy . . . as sure as this morning's dawn, he's on the prowl, "seeking someone to devour" (1 Pet. 5:8).
He's been at it for centuries. By means of a brilliant strategy, an insidious scheme, he takes advantage of our mental dullness. Surprise attacks are his specialty.
Small wonder Jesus kept urging His followers to "be on the alert," to "watch," to "resist," to keep a clean crop, free of stuff that "chokes the word, making it unfruitful."
Why? Because you never know when you are in the crosshairs of the enemy's high-powered rifle. It could be today that you will be the target. When you least expect it . . . in the lazy days of summer, in the cool days of autumn, in the fog of false security, under the frost of a laid-back lifestyle.
He's looking for you. He's primed and ready to fire. And he doesn't wait for hunting season. In fact, as far as Satan is concerned, it's always open season on Christians.
Are you alert to the danger?
If you're going to stand firm in the faith, you can't be lying down.
Excerpted from Day by Day with Charles Swindoll, Copyright © 2000 by Charles R. Swindoll, Inc. (Thomas Nelson Publishers). All rights reserved worldwide. Used by permission.