"Do not give the devil a foothold." Ephesians 4:27 NIV

Now the enemy has his own program for you, and I want to tell you about it because I think it is one of the most subtle things that he does. Satan loves to interfere in our lives, particularly the lives of Believers, so that he can cause us to do his will instead of the will of God.

Satan aims to keep God’s people so busy with the things of this world that they have no time to devote to their spiritual lives. Satan promises his followers victory if they can convince the rest of us to faithfully do the following 12 things. Now listen carefully:

1. Keep them busy with non-essentials

2. Tempt them to overspend and go into debt

3. Make them work long hours to maintain empty lifestyles

4. Discourage them from spending time together as a family, for when homes disintegrate there’s no escape from work

5. Overstimulate their minds with television, social media and gossip so they can’t hear God speaking to them

6. Fill their coffee tables and their nightstands with newspapers and magazines so they have no time to read the Bible

7. Flood their mailboxes and inboxes with sweepstakes, 2-for-1 promotions and get rich quick schemes to keep them chasing material things

8. Put glamorous models on TV and on social media to keep them focused on outward appearances, that way they’ll be dissatisfied with themselves

9. Make it easy for everyone to bond together as victims (particularly online), that way no one has to take accountability

10. Emphasize Santa and the Easter Bunny that way you divert them from the real meaning of the holidays

11. Involve them in good causes so they won’t have time for eternal causes

12. And make them self-sufficient, busy, working in their own strength so that they’ll never know the joy of God’s power working through them.

Where God is going to take you, you have got to be able to manage your defenses against the enemy. Jesus could not afford to have disciples that couldn’t handle problems. He said, “I do not want anything that the enemy throws at you to reduce you down from where I’m going to put you.”

Jesus was preparing us. He wanted a system of managing what was coming against us. That system was prayer, praise, and getting into the Word. Do these three every day and love and forgiveness will flow. Jesus said, “I don’t care what they throw at you. Keep on forgiving them.”

You really don’t know the power of forgiveness until you fully commit to it. You can’t forgive with contingencies. That’s not forgiveness. That’s a negotiation.

A different way of thinking about the importance of forgiveness is to think about the cost of not forgiving. You do not have enough strength to manage yesterday’s pain. You are carrying too much. Let it go!

If you see someone hurting today, lean in and tell them to let it go.

"Fear is a scheme that the devil uses to great effect. From my personal study, the words “do not be afraid” or “fear thee not” appear over one hundred times in the Bible! The message from God is quite clear: we need not be afraid!" Pedro Okoro from Crushing the Devil: Your Guide to Spiritual Warfare and Victory in Christ

Our Prayer: Dear Lord, I come to you today because I know I need your help. Since the Garden, we’ve been fighting against the lies and tactics of the enemy. Open my eyes to see what’s true and what isn’t. Plant my feet firmly in the fertile ground you already claimed with the blood of your Son, Jesus, and empower me with your Spirit who leads me in victory. In Jesus’s Name, Amen.

About the Author:
Jason Thielbahr
Jason Thielbahr

Head of Schools

Jason was born in Santa Monica, California. Jason has a...

Jason was born in Santa Monica, California. Jason has a Bachelor’s degree in Economics from Occidental College where he was an...