Tuesday, January 17, 2012

What enemy?

As those out to get me come closer and closer, they go farther and farther from the truth you reveal; but you're the closest of all to me, Godand all your judgments true.  I've known all along from the evidence of your words that you meant them to last forever.
(Psalm 119:150-152 The Message)

There are definitely times when we feel our "enemy" breathing down our neck and just want to run like a crazy person from the "threat" we feel.  In a literal sense, we have "enemies" who come against us - - someone who is determined to make life miserable for us.  In a spiritual sense, we have one really big enemy - - Satan.  In an emotional sense, we have lots of "enemies" - - fear, pride, lust, just to name a few.  Regardless of the "enemy", we need to hear the words above:  The closer they get to us, the farther they are from the truth God reveals when we draw closer to him!

If we look at the emotional enemies a little, here's what we discover:

- The enemy of fear drives a hard bargain.  With fear, the goal is to shut us down so we are no longer making forward progress.  Any of our "human" or "spiritual" enemies can use fear as a "weapon" in their arsenal to wage an attack upon us if we are not paying attention to our response to their attack.  Fear is the exact opposite of faith -- the outcome of fear is paralysis (a lack of movement).  No enemy is more happy than the one who takes advantage of us as "sitting ducks"!

- The enemy of pride demands a place of prominence, constantly reminding us we can be "more", do "more", get "more".  The focus of pride's attack is in the area of our satisfaction -- pride tunes into our forces of perception and focuses us on what we "don't" have rather than on what we "do" have.  The outcome of pride's attack is an inattentiveness to the things which really matter in life.  Quantity is rarely equal to quality.

- The enemy of lust wiggles its way into our lives through our "eye gate".  The things we behold with our eyes become the things which tickle our fancy -- the things we learn to desire because they "look" good. I have often wondered where we would be today if Eve never considered the apple on the tree of good and evil!  It was in the moment of considering that the battle began.  There is no greater weapon we have than our ability to "flee" the very first tug!

The enemies go on and on.  You get the idea.  The opposite of our "enemy" is our God!  The opposite outcome of our enemy's attack is our God's blessing!  The opposite of our enemy's lies if our God's truth!  No enemy wages an attack that catches God off-guard (even though it may catch US a little off-guard!).  The best place to be when we feel the "heat" of our enemy's breath is close to God's heart!