I went to bed wondering if I was coming down with something. Don’t you hate those moments. It wasn’t long after going to bed that I knew I was in trouble.
I ended up going downstairs as not to keep Amy awake. I sat in the dark, in a reclining chair, wrapped up in a blanket, with my mind spinning in a dozen different directions. My thoughts centered around a handful of individuals and/or families that I have know and ministered to over the years that were once walking strong with the Lord but are no longer following Christ. In recent weeks I had heard some horror stories of several of these once dear friends now going through failed marriages, addictions, and other examples of brokenness.
I sat there in the dark for hours praying for these different ones the Lord was bringing to mind. I grieved, pleaded for God’s mercy, and wondered if there were things I could have done to have changed their outcomes.
Honestly, I think hugging a toilet all night might have been more tolerable.
It’s not like it was in the 1970’s. I know that back then the devil was still the devil and that deception was still deception, but the battles today seem to be so much more fierce and the destructive damage appears to be everywhere. My stomach ached, and it had nothing to do with being sick. I remember a movie where they showed the wounded soldiers coming from the battle field. I’m weary of so many of the people I love bleeding and bandaged up, uncertain if they’ll even survive.
Today (Monday) I spent much of the day continuing to process what had consumed me the night before. Then I felt the Lord remind me of something from years ago, which I felt important enough to put into words hoping to share with whoever the Lord would lead to read this.
The Bible warns us in 1 Peter 5:8 that our enemy is like a lion out to devour us. Regarding this, there are three things we would do very well to know:
- When a lion is tracking its prey, it looks for an animal that’s separated from the flock or heard.
- The lion will also look for a wounded animal that is more easy to catch.
- And the lion is looking for the animal that is not paying attention to the dangers around it.
I don’t believe there has ever been a time in history when being surrounded in the midst of the Church has been more vitally important. The world often tries to hijack this Biblical truth: “A chord of many strands is not easily broken” (Ecclesiastes 4:12). God calls us not to forsake the gathering together of believers (Hebrews 10:25).
May God give us wisdom, strength, and the encouragement of fellow brothers and sisters in Christ.