The Covenant Blog

in Faith, Hope

Satan Will Not Steal My Joy

Satan Will Not Steal My Joy

In my last devotion, I stated that I would be stepping out in faith, would be still, and would wait on God.  After expressing that, I planted my feet and claimed His joy each and every day.  It felt as though Satan laid off for a few days... but he's hit again. It’s no surprise to me because he is a thief and a liar after all.  

It's amazing what a gift positive thinking and claiming peace in the name of Jesus will do for us.  As I began to step out in faith and wait for God to move, I felt as though I were in a constant state of peace, joyfulness, and I felt whole.  With this feeling came confidence, confidence in who I was, who I could be, confidence in the One that guides my life; I hadn't clung to that confidence in a long time.  I felt renewed and refreshed.

God gave His Son so we could have life and have it more abundantly.  This doesn't mean that he wants us to walk through life feeling tied down in bondage, beat down, heavy from depression, doubt, holding onto unforgiveness, have hate in our heart, and live in discouragement -- it simply means that we should possess and exhibit the fruit of the Spirit (joy, love, peace, etc…). Because we have access to all them thanks to the Holy Spirit that resides in us.

So, during these trials, why do we claim and accept the doubt, discouragement, and depression that Satan throws at us when God made available to us His everlasting joy, peace, goodness, faith, etc? We can have those whenever we need it and WANT it.  I don't know about everyone else, but I'm done just accepting what Satan throws at me and laying down; is it even worth the time and energy?  Instead, what would happen if God's followers began accepting His good and rejecting the bad?   Philippians 3:7-8 "... More than that I also consider everything to be a loss in view of the surpassing value of knowing Christ Jesus my Lord.  Because of him I have suffered the loss of all things and consider them filth, so that I may gain Christ."

John 10:10 (NKJV) The thief does not come except to steal, and to kill, and to destroy. I have come that they may have life and that they may have it more abundantly.

Galatians 5:22-23 (NKJV) But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, longsuffering, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, self-control. Against such there is no law.

 

Posted by Trista Stepp with 0 Comments

Brutally Simple Love

Brutally simple means that the core teaching is easily understood, but it's difficult to live out.

Love is the core of the Bible. In Mark 12 Jesus was asked about the greatest commandments…the ones that are most important to which Jesus answered "Love God. Love others".  Romans 13 tells us the Law is summed up in one command of loving your neighbor. When we love others we don't gossip, lie, cheat or abuse. The entire Law is fulfilled by love. By loving ALL people, then the laws would be kept. So, what blocks love in our lives?

A brief list would include

  1. Being judgmental. You don't like someone and you hold it against them. 
  2. Prejudice. You don't like a particular group of people. 
  3. Insecurity. You don't like yourself, so you don't like others. 
  4. Rationalization. You have been hurt by someone so you feel that you have the right to hurt them. 
  5. Pride. You feel you are better than others. 

Now that we have looked at a few things that block love in our lives, let’s focus on "how to love".

Two things stand out when learning how to love. First, we must be able to accept love. If we don't believe we are loved, then it's impossible to love God and love others the way we are designed. 1 John 4 tells us God loved us first. Unconditionally!

Romans 5:8 says that God demonstrates his own love for us in this: while we were yet sinners, Christ died for us. God did not wait until we had things together before loving us. This is important to understand. God demonstrated His love and showed us how to love by sending Jesus. God did not ask us to accept love based on words but on actions.

Love produces evidence. It's not just a feeling. Love is deployed through proof. God says "I Love you" and follows it with action.

The second part of learning how to love is summed up in one word "ACT" We must act with love, not simply say we love. Jesus gave a new command. The old command was to love God and love each other. The new command is that we take the old command and love God and others in the exact same way as Jesus. 1 John says, "we don't love with words, but action," Matthew 5 tells us "Jesus doesn't ask that we simply love our enemies, he tells us to use positive actions to prove we love our enemies.

God proved His love for us. Will you accept His love? God asks that we prove our love for Him and others. How will you do this?

 Here's a checklist to remember

  1. To discover "true love" we must be able to accept love.
  2. Recognize love is less about emotion and more about action.
  3. Love produces evidence! ACT!!!!!

12345678910 ... 1516