December 23 Devotional

Think about the enemies you have in your life for a minute today.  For me, the top of my list is my own selfishness and pride.  I also battle with laziness and apathy at times.  I also struggle with bitterness and anger at points.  I battle bad habits … nothing that might alarm you, but habits that are trying to destroy my testimony and effectiveness in ministry.  This list could go on and on.  Oh yes, there are some people that have opposed me and what I think is right at points in my life, but they are not the most severe enemy I have.  Those internal enemies that seem to knock at my hearts door on a regular basis, looking for the controls are the ones that scare me the most.

 

If we are not careful, we will fall into the trap this world has set for us.  That trap is the thinking that if I try a little harder; if I study a little more; if I attend enough seminars, or church services; if I simply put more effort into it … I will be able to control these things and defeat these enemies on my own.  Nothing could be further from the truth.  If we read Scripture honestly, we will read account after account of men and women who thought in their own wisdom they could handle the situation … and yet their lives ended in failure.  To name just a few for you to think about: Samson … Judas Iscariot … Cain … Demas … and I could go on and on.  The reason I could go on and on is because this is a flaw in our human reasoning.  As always, the answer is in our Bible.

 

Give us help from trouble: For vain is the help of man.  Through God we shall do valiantly: For He it is that shall tread down our enemies” (Psalm 60:11-12).  The help for our troubles will not come from within us, or from our society, or from that “self-help” lecture.  The help for us in our battle with these enemies from within will come only when we totally yield to the God we serve Who is able to stomp our enemies into the ground.  We know this … why is it that we struggle with surrender so much?   It is one of those enemies we all have inside us telling us that we know far better and so much more than anyone else who is giving us advice opposed to our own thinking.  You see, the enemy we battle more than any external foe, is our own sinful, deteriorating moral fiber.  When we come to the place that we are not only trying to convince others that our flawed thinking is right, but we begin to believe it ourselves; we have allowed those internal enemies to triumph in us.  Completely surrender the controls of your life to our God Who can conquer, and control these enemies within.  We still have enemies within … be we have a God Who can conquer them if we yield to Him.