Tag Archives: satan

Life, Liberty and the Pursuit of Crappyness

Ladies and gentlemen, we’ve got an epidemic!

Satan–the enemy of our souls–has silenced too many Christians.

I have been a silent one.
I have been convinced that what I have to say does not matter.
I’ve been duped that I have nothing to contribute.

During my season of silencing, I thought I was being reflective and pensive. It was just part of life. I had the liberty to process. It led to a lot of crappyness in the Kingdom.

Satan’s life is throwing me death.
Satan’s liberty is to torment me.
Satan’s fruit is the pursuit of crappyness.

The lie is I have nothing to say. The truth is that I have more to share than ever before. The lie is that my life is inconsequential and not worth mentioning. The truth is I’ve got the Truth in me and He needs to be shared.

My aim is to advance the Great Commission. When I am too silent, I miss the mark. And missing the mark is the definition of sin. If the Holy Spirit has put something in me and I don’t share it, then I’m grieving Him.

What are you doing with your life? Sitting around watching television, trying to solve the world’s problems from your couch?

What liberties are you living for? The liberty to do whatever you want, whenever you want?

Are you in the pursuit of crappyness?

Assess where you are and ask the Lord what you can improve in your life. Ask Him to show you where you’ve been silent. You may be surprised by what you hear.

Fulfillment

As promised, I shall write about something God was speaking to me on Sunday.  Honestly, as I wracked my brain trying to remember that specific thing to write this blog, I couldn’t remember.  Every time that I read the Bible, God reveals something new to me.  So each day, there’s a new revelation.  It’s wonderful.  My church really promotes reading the Bible every day and reading the whole Bible in its entirety every year.  I’m a firm believer in that, as well.  If you’ve never read the whole Bible, I recommend it.  And no, don’t give me that, “The Old Testament is boring and I don’t get it,” junk.  There is SO much in the Old Testament!  It is so interesting!  Everything in the Old Testament points to Jesus and the coming of the Messiah.  It’s amazing.  Ask God to reveal things to you when you read the Bible and He will.  Simple.

On to what I learned on Sunday!  My pastor was talking about how often the words fulfill and fulfillment are used in Matthew.  Jesus is the fulfillment of the Old Testament (OT).  Jesus fulfilled God’s wrath.  Jesus fulfills everything we need. 

Hold up!  Stop right there.  Jesus fulfills everything we need.  That sentence stops me.  It stopped me Sunday and it stops me now.  I’ve been asking myself, “Does Jesus really fulfill me?  Am I content with Him?  Or am I fruitlessly pursuing other, empty, never satisfying things?”

Sadly, the answer for that query is that Jesus often doesn’t fulfill me.  He’s more than able to do that, but I don’t let Him.  I’m so busy chasing after things I think will fulfill that He doesn’t even get the opportunity.  Take food, for example.  Tons of people eat to try and fill a void.  I used to do that.  If I’m not careful, I still do that.  People hunger for attention and affection, so they eat food.  Does that make sense?  No.  Not at all. 

Another area of fulfillment is lust.  Lust is a product of the flesh.  The flesh always wants something.  Bigger, better, more expensive, more sleek, more interesting stuff.  The flesh, in the biblical standpoint, is the opposite of the Spirit.  Spirit is of God.  Flesh is of fallen man.   The flesh never stops lusting.  So, how would I stop lusting?  I’d have to live in the Spirit and let God be my fulfillment.

I often lust for candy or pop or new, expensive gadgets.  And now, instead of relentlessly pursuing those things until I get them, I’m going to seek God first.  Lust is only a quest for fulfillment.  Jesus fulfills everything I’ll ever need.  So, instead of chasing the object, I’m going to chase God.  Chasing lust is empty.  

It’s natural to hunger for fulfillment.  But it’s not healthy to hunger for material things.  I need to take my natural hunger and turn it toward something fulfilling: Jesus.

Here’s how I’m going to apply this:  The next time I’m really lusting after something, I’m going to immediately start praying and read the Bible.  I’m going to fill myself with things that satisfy.  I know I’ll feel full after a time of intimacy with Jesus.  

Well, that’s it.  That was my giant revelation.    May seem simplistic but I think it’s profound.

You either swallow the Enemy or let him out

If you’ve been reading my blog for awhile, you’ll probably remember a few posts about my prayer walks at MTSU (the local college).  If you haven’t been a faithful reader, then I’ll explain.  Basically, I took prayer walks on the MTSU campus all summer long.  I also continued to take them after school started up again.  Well, after I started working at the temp agency, I didn’t take the walks as often as I wanted to.  And, I eventually stopped a little over a month ago.

Since I stopped prayer walking, there have been two shootings and one stabbing on campus.  Knowing I hadn’t prayer walked in so long and hearing about all of those violent things happening really convicted me.  So, today I Trikked to campus and took some time to pray and seek God for specific scripture for the campus/my life/the city/the church.

And, as always, God did not disappoint.  While there, I had a great time of prayer and I also received a few awesome scriptures. 

1 Samuel 2:1-10 — What first caught my attention was verse 10.  “The adversaries of the Lord shall be broken in pieces.”  While thinking about all of the violence on campus, it was comforting to read that all of the evil that was so prevalent would be destroyed.  I was reading these verses in the New Spirit Filled Life (NSFL) Bible.  It’s the New King James Version.  The NSFL Bible has great explanations, especially for verse one.  The verse says, “I smile at my enemies…”  The explanation for that verse said it was a cross reference for another verse that means an open mouth devouring enemies. 

My next scripture was Isaiah 29:9-24.  It talks about praising God with lip service but not sincerely praising Him.  It’s idle religion without an honest relationship with God.

And finally, I was led to Psalm 111 and 112.  Psalm 111 is an example of the correct way to praise God as a congregation.  Psalm 112 talks about delighting in the Lord (i.e. smiling at Him).

After reading all of this scripture God gave me two visions.

One was of an open, smiling mouth of praise that devoured the Enemy (as the 1 Samuel passage said).

The second was of a mouth speaking the words of the Enemy: idle religion, division, disunity and lies like that of the people in the Isaiah scripture.

The church of America has become irrelevant.  It’s like the people in Isaiah.  Idle religion.  Lip service. 

The church of America needs to be like the 1 Samuel passage and those two Psalms.  We need to delight in the Lord.  We need to smile at Him and, consequently, devour our Enemy. 

The tongue speaks life and death.  The mouth either devours or releases the Enemy.

What Is Knew?

What do I know?  What’s there that I knew?

What’s knew is I’ve been learning a lot from my church lately.  There’s always something that I could blog about but whenever I’m really pensive it’s never when I’m at a computer.  And a BlackBerry really isn’t the best tool for writing a long blog.

So, bullet-point-esque as it is, here’s a quick run down…

1. I lost one job and got another.  (Doesn’t it seem like I’m always talking about jobs?  Feels like that to me.)  I was working as a Human Resources Assistant for about two months.  That’s what I started doing after my four month employment hiatus.  However, that job was temporary and its tempness ran out.  Thankfully, my manager told me a week ahead of time that my assignment was ending.  So, I applied at local grocery stores, banks, retail stores, etc.  I was willing to do pretty much anything to serve my community, even if it meant working as a cashier though I have a college degree.

However, my former boss (the one I had while working at CCM Magazine) called me up and offered me contract work at her current job.  She was laid off from CCM a little while before I was.  So, thank the Lord, I am now working again as a Search Engine Optimization Specialist.  Basically I help make websites more search engine friendly.  It’s fun.  It combines math and English.  It’s always interesting.  If you need any SEO help, I’m your girl.  🙂

The weekend after I found out my temp job was ending, a little bit of worry crept in.  You are aware of how the economy is right now.  Although I believe in God and trust His provision in my life, it’s sooooooo easy to fall into worry and concern over my financial future.  However, one evening while I was taking my dog for a stroll, God really spoke to me.  He said, “Lindsay, you have to believe Me for Who I am.  I am not a God of doubt or anxiety or fear.  I am a God of trust, faithfulness, belief and faith.  If you are believing in fear, worry and anxiety, then I can’t help you because I am not those things.  But if you believe and have faith for provision, protection and promotion, then I can deliver those things.  I can’t and won’t compromise My character so you need to trust me for who I AM.” 

That was a revelation!  God can’t deliver doubt.  He can’t deliver fear.  Cuz those things are not His character.  He can deliver aspects of who He is but cannot deliver aspects of who He is not.  Glorious revelation.

I also received another dog-walking revelation a week or so ago.  As my dog was doing his business, I prophesying over my life and speaking truth over my unemployed situation.  (Obviously, at that time, I did not yet know of the Search Engine Optimization job.)  I was walking around on the cold night and saying things like, “God will provide.  I am in His will.  I am walking obediently.  I am under His hand of blessing.” 

Soon, counter thoughts came in from the Enemy.  “You can’t trust God to come through for you.  Look at the economy.  You’re going to be unemployed again.  You’ll never get another job right now.  In fact, you are speaking in pride when you say God will provide.  You’re being conceited.  You are supposed to be humble.  God will oppose this.”

And, God (through the Holy Spirit) replied, “Whoa, whoa…wait a minute here.  Trusting Me is not prideful.  In fact, it’s humble.  What’s the definition of humility, Lindsay?”

“Humility is confidence properly placed in Christ,” I said.

“That’s right.” He replied, joyfully.  “So, if humility is confidence properly placed in Me and I oppose the proud and give grace to the humble, then there is nothing wrong or prideful with trusting in Me.”

“Exactly!” I exclaimed.

“Exactly.” He responded.

There’s nothing wrong with trusting God completely because He is entirely faithful to provide. 

Another lie from Satan refuted.  Another thought victory won.

2. The Church as a whole is suffering from Bible illiteracy.  That’s a big one, folks.  A big one.  So big that it may offend some of you as readers.  And, if you are offended by that, then it supports my point of being Bible illiterate.  Cuz the Bible says not to take offense. 🙂

But seriously though.  There isn’t enough Fear of the Lord in the Church today.  People don’t revere God.  People are not really in awe of Him.  And they are espeically not in awe of His Word, i.e. the Bible. 

It’s known as “The Good Book.”  If the book’s so good then why do so few people read it?  Why does no one study it and pore over the words on the pages like they pore over Harry Potter, Twilight or a Mark Twain novel?  I am speaking with exaggerated words here when I say “no one.”  But on the grand scale, it seems like no one.

I’m not just speaking to you all.  I’m also reminding myself.  I admit/confess that I do not know the Bible as well as I need to.  I will be pursuing the Word with more purpose and focus from now on.

3. I had five points a minute ago and the last three somehow got deleted because I was typing so fast and then suddenly it was gone.  I hate it when that happens.  (The things I go through for you, Abi.)

4. We officially launched New Song Murfreesboro (http://www.new-song.com) on October 26.  We meet in a movie theater.  It’s awesome to have a full-time Sunday morning church after over a year of preparation.

5. I led worship at Life Group (our church’s small group ministry) for the first time last Wednesday.  It was awesome!  It’s a humbling and awe-inspiring experience to lead worship.  I love it.  I’m excited to grow in this area.

6. My interest for marriage has been piqued.  I sense that I’m ready to move into a marriage season.  No I’m not dating.  No I’m not courting.  However, I want to do those things.  I mean…almost every single person wants to be un-single to some degree.  But I really am sensing a desire for marriage rising up inside of me.  I’m not discontent with being single.  I don’t hate being single.  I’m not even complaining.  But I am saying that I do want to get married some day.  And I hope that day comes soon.  *nod*

7. I think I’m done.  After the fiasco of losing half this blog, I better quit while these words are still here.

Dear The Media

Dear The Media,

I honestly believe that you are quite responsible for the not so great economy.  When you repeatedly talk about how bad the economy appears to be, you give Satan entrance to make it worse.  I challenge you to speak positively.

Not listening to your negative spin on culture,

Lindsay

In lieu of Coke, I drank sweet tea

You’d think that after sitting around and thinking for three weeks that I’d have wonderful things to say.

You’d think my words would be eloquent and divinely inspired.

You’d think they would be full of revelation and profound truth.

You’d think…

I’d say that, yeah, I have learned a lot in this time. Yeah, I do have great things to say. Sure, if I sat here long enough and proofread every word three times this blog would flow seamlessly. Certainly I’ve received words of comfort from God. But I don’t know if I’d term them revelationary. (Yeah. That’s a new word.)

My roommate suggested that I fast something until I get a job. I decided to fast pop/soda/coke/cola/soda pop. Truth is, I’d often find myself plotting ways to go out and buy pop. I’d plan my day around my cola intake. I’d say that’s a case of the flesh overtaking my self control. Time out for a mini-lesson. Your flesh is your sinful, lustful, selfish side. Your spirit (that is, if you’re a Christian) is the God-seeking, submissive, righteous, holy side.

Since last week, I’ve not had any pop. It hasn’t been that hard to abstain from drinking it.

However, I noticed that I started drinking sweet tea and eating more candy bars instead. Rather than totally overcoming the urge for sugar, I just transferred the method of sugar intake. Not exactly a successful fasting exercise.

Good news is that I realized this was happening and I’ve taken steps to properly align myself, God, the flesh and my desires.

Some of you may find it weird that I have to starve my flesh into submission. I don’t find it strange. I find it necessary. Contrary to the way America works, our flesh and self-fleshness (‘nother new word combo) are not in charge. The flesh shouldn’t rule all of our desires. We shouldn’t go about our lives driven by our latest lust.

If I’m not careful, I find myself scheming for the next thing that I want. Take now, for example. I want an iPod Touch. My flesh is convinced that I have every good reason to have one. Examine the truth and you’ll find that I already have an iPod Nano. The Nano works fine. I’m unemployed and frankly cannot and should not afford another iPod right now. The main reasons I want an iPod Touch are so I can have wireless connectivity and email wherever I am. I want to beef up my cool factor. I want to have another toy to play with.

I don’t need a new iPod. I just want one. For totally stupid reasons.

If I were still employed, I would’ve purchased that iPod around the time I got laid off. I thought I had enough money to do pretty much whatever I wanted. I was planning a trip to New Mexico. I had a newly-deposited stimulus check from the government sitting in my bank account, waiting to be used. I was loving work. I was rolling in self competency.

And then all of that dreaminess and money freedom ended on a Tuesday morning when my boss came in and said my position had been eliminated.

I went from iPod dreams to an, “I’m unemployed,” reality.

Three weeks later, here I am with my third (perhaps fourth blog) about the fact that I’m unemployed. I still haven’t lost hope. I’m still expecting God to do great things.

Here’s what’s different:

1. I’m no longer controlled by my flesh (and ultimately Satan; since he drives all pursuits of the flesh).

2. I’m stewarding the money God has allowed me to temporarily use as my own to pay my bills, sow the seeds of His kingdom and give back to Him mainly in increments of 10%.

3 I’m a prisoner of hope. All I can do is hope. I cannot be negative because I find no moral, spiritual, physical, mental or sensical reason to be negative.

4. I enjoy my life everyday because I’m desperate for God, His provision, His work, His might, His comfort and His promises. I’ve learned the lesson that I need to be desperate for God all of the time. On the good days, the bad days, the sad days, the glad days. All days must be desperate days. Apart from God, I can do nothing. I was aware of that verse and concept but I just didn’t quite get it until I found myself in desperation.

I used to be ashamed of desperation. I have always been the put-together, proud person. I would only tell my life story experiences after they were wrapped up, taken care of and had a happy ending.

And now I am desperate…and I am celebrating it! I need God–more than I need a happy ending, more than I need a great job, more than I need a husband, more than I need food on the table.

In my current mental movie, I see the Nashville skyline on the left and God standing on the right. I hear Him say, “Do you choose to be alone with everything–your dream job, a good paycheck and friendly coworkers? Or do you choose Me alone, your everything? What do you want? Commuter? Or community? Do you want to be alone in your car on the way to work most of your life? Or do you want to work in the community where you live and build relationships with the neighbors around you?”

As I gaze upon the city skyline, I sigh. I see falsely glamorous, busy activity and aimless pursuits in circular, repetitive motion. When I fix my eyes upon Him, my Creator, I see true peace. I see a flowing river next to a stable, rooted, healthy tree.

Without vision, the people perish. Thankfully, you’ve just witnessed me receiving something revelationary.

I choose He alone, my everything.

Random Analogy

I thought of this analogy a few days ago.  It may not make sense or be fresh anymore, but I’m gonna type it out anyway.

The similarities of eggs, a relationship with God and life…

Sometimes life is hard
And our thoughts get a little scrambled
When we are deviled, we fall for things that are over easy
We occasionally get trapped in the poached snare of sin
Fortunately, God wraps us in an omelet of love
His yolk it is light on us
And we are never cracked beyond repair

Reel Regret

I think a lot. Sometimes too much. I used to think that all my thinking was a good thing. I valued my enhanced intellectualism and self-proclaimed wisdom.

I’ve recently learned, through reading books by Neil T. Anderson, that my mind’s been prideful and deceived for most of my life.

It’s certainly been humbling to learn about all the ways that I’ve been misled. The higher, hidden corners of my mind were exposed for their lowness.

But that’s not the point of this blog. It’s just a pre-explanation for what’s to come. So I’ll get to it.

Since my mind is racing and pacing so often, it’s like I have a movie theater, TV and radio station going all the time. I rewind and replay my favorite movie and television clips. I beebop along to my personal MindTunes soundtrack throughout the day.

The benefit to all this synaptic activity is that I’m not bored because I can just tap into my mind media archive. The drawback is that there’s constant cranium commotion.

As a fallible human, I’ve done things in my past that I’m not proud of. You could even call them regrettable. While my mind replays movies and TV, it also replays memories of my past and ideal situations for my future.

I call the unhappy memories of my past Reel Regret, with word play on movie reels.

I used to punish myself thinking about things in my past that I could’ve done better, or shouldn’t have done at all. I thought I was disciplining myself and preparing myself for a better future.

The truth is that I’d let Satan use those reel regrets to distract me from what I should’ve been doing in those present moments. I spent many days in the reccesses of my mind, completely unattached to what was going on around me. I didn’t connect with people, I just idly observed them as I reviewed the replays in my mind.

It’s safe to say that I missed out on the development of several relationships because I was thinking and not interacting with my surroundings.

Since I’ve began reading the Neil T. Anderson books (and books by Joyce Meyer and others), I’ve gained a lot of insight on the proper way to think. I’ve loosed bondages in my mind and my life. I’m more at peace than I’ve ever been and my mind actually experiences times of quiet.

However, with the increase in my thought control, there’s also been an increase in mental attacks from Satan. He’s tried (and succeeded several times) to make me continue to regret things from my past. He pushes play on the reels of regret in my mind. And, if I’m not taking my thoughts captive, I spend hours rehashing old problems and rehearsing how I’ll act in the future to make up for what I didn’t do in the past.

Satan even uses good things that I’ve done or intended to do and made me feel bad about them. Recently, I planned on giving a CD to a friend because I knew she liked that band’s music. I forgot to give the CD to the friend when I saw her. As soon as I realized I forgot to give her the CD, an onslaught of regret and sadness assailed me. It took me two days to finally get over feeling bad about that. Not only did I beat myself up about not giving her the CD and rehash all the times I could’ve given it to her, I started pre-planning the next time I’d see her and what I’d say when I gave it to her and how I’d make up for my previous forgetfullness.

It’s incredibly distracting to think like that. But I used to do it all the time. I used to think it was good that I was so analytical. I actually thought myself better than others because I analyzed so many things.

*takes a deep breath*

I was once trapped in the prison of my mind. But now I’m free. However, Satan and his legions still follow me around ready and willing welcome me back into mental distraction.

Satan is a player. He pushes the play button of regret. He plays on my emotions. He plays with my mind.

I’m pushing stop, removing his demonic DVD and unplugging the cord.

Weakly Wednesdays

I am often in a bad mood on Wednesdays. I may have blogged about this before. I can’t remember.

Every Wednesday evening I meet with a group of people from my church. We eat a meal together, talk about what was taught in church the Sunday before and then pray together. It’s Christian fellowship and hangout time. It’s fun. It’s encouraging. It’s nice to connect with people from my area.

However, every week I find myself in a foul mood on Wednesdays. I believe it’s because Satan’s trying to get me down and convince me not to go to the gathering. He wants me to stay home and be alone, sulking about my bad day, eating and watching TV.

Satan’s aim for me is to be a sedentary sulker.

God’s will for me is to be a connected Christian.

The greatest dream God has is that His people be unified. It makes perfect sense that Satan would do his best to prevent that from happening.

I’ve often heard it said that opposition from Satan is a good thing. It means I’m doing something right. With these weakly, weekly Wednesdays, I’m convinced that I’m doing God’s will by going to these gatherings. So I’ll persevere through the tiredness, irritability and laziness in pursuit of God’s purpose.