The righteous shall flourish like a palm tree,
He shall grow like a cedar in
Those who are planted in the house of the Lord
Shall flourish in the courts of our God.
A father of the fatherless, a defender of widows,
Is God in His holy habitation.
God sets the solitary in families;
He brings out those who are bound into prosperity;
But the rebellious dwell in a dry land.
I’m gonna keep this short and sweet.
Days #26 & #27 in The Purpose Driven Life are all about temptation.
How to grow through it, and how to overcome it.
Here’s how it works.
The bible says:
casting all your care upon Him, for He cares for you.
Be sober, be vigilant; because your adversary the devil walks about like a roaring lion, seeking whom he may devour. Resist him, steadfast in the faith, knowing that the same sufferings are experienced by your brotherhood in the world.
1 Peter 5:7-9
#1: whenever you’re tempted, you need to shift your focus.
God cares about you… He LOVES you! (I’ll say it again) HE LOVES YOU!
Because He loves you, you can trust Him.
Whatever is wearing you down, whatever is tempting you, or even whatever is making you worry… just stop for a second and shift your focus back to Him.
You will find it’s impossible to be so concerned about things when you are surrounded by His presence.
#2: As much as God loves you… so the devil matches Him for hatred.
Its true, he hates you. But you don’t have to worry about it.
God says to “be vigilant”!
That doesn’t mean you go looking for the next “warfare” the enemy is waiting to spring on you.
Don’t give him so much credit!
He hates you… but that’s because you are made in God’s image AND Satan knows that – thru the blood of Christ and the Holy Spirit inside of you – you have the POWER to defeat him!
#3: “Resist him steadfast in the faith”
It’s extremely hard to resist someone who you constantly give in to.
So in order to resist Satan, you must make sure you’re covered.
You must be covered in the blood of Jesus… filled with His Holy Spirit… and planted in a place that He chooses.
This last point brings me back to the 2 verses I started out with. (if you skipped over these entirely, please go back and read them. Even if you read them, please go back and review. Highly important. J )
Being planted in your local church is the key.
It’s much easier to resist temptation when you have good God-appointed leaders over you to help steer you straight when the enemy swoops in like a roaring lion… it is this God-given authority that may save your life someday if you just stay planted in God’s house.
You don’t choose your church… God chooses your church.
He placed you there for a reason… He set you in that church family because there was a YOU-shaped hole waiting to be filled. Anytime you feel like you should maybe leave, or even get frustrated with your family (and we all know families quarrel from time to time) and want to run away – just remember. There’s an enemy out there who hates you. And he would give anything to see you uprooted and die in some hot, dry place because you got out from under your authority.
Bloom where He planted you.
Stay planted… and you WILL flourish in the house of God!
Happy Sunday! J