Turning the Tables
“Aren’t you afraid?” she whispered, not the least bit ashamed to ask. I just smiled. “No…not anymore,” I answered, not the least bit hesitant. As she leaned in, I couldn’t wait to tell her my secret. The secret that’s not so hard to find, but so many spend their whole lives missing.
I know who I belong to and who fights with and for me.
Knowing these Truths changes everything.
As we leaned over that quiet table in the coffee shop, I saw that she was listening. So, I told her the Truth.
“The enemy is the one who is afraid,” I said with a genuine smirk. I couldn’t help but grin, really. When you have spent so much of your life in worry, anxiety, fear, unrest, you just get, well…tired of yourself.
Tired of the lies, tired of the spinning drama in my brain, tired of second-guessing if I was doing this life right, being or bringing enough…all of it. I was tired of it all.
The fact of the matter is that from the beginning of creation, Satan has been hard at work to steal the storyline in our lives. Think of Adam and Eve and that crafty serpent. “Did God really say…?” And this tactic has been hard at work ever since.
But here’s the thing – Satan isn’t the one who has written all our days down before one of them came to be (Psalm 139). Not even close. Our days (and hope) are more solid than that. His character is unchanging, friends. So, when He tells you who you are, you can take that to the bank.
When I asked God to be Lord over my life, He said, “Yes.” It was that simple.
Therefore, everything I am has been redeemed by the blood of the Lamb and all that is left is for me to walk into the freedom that has already been purchased for me.
Every day I step into this wide open space, knowing that I never had enough to bring it all the way home to begin with.
“This righteousness from God comes through faith in Jesus Christ to all who believe. There is no difference, for all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God and are justified freely by his grace through the redemption that came by Christ Jesus.”
And it’s really ok. He delights to meet us in our need and take it the rest of the way home. That’s just what He does.
“But I don’t understand,” she said, “Why is the enemy afraid?”
Again, I smiled, knowing what this revelation could mean for her, too. I opened the well-worn pages of my Bible to the book of Job.
We read it together. Satan desired to bring Job low, down from where he was blessed and safe. And God allowed him to do it, with one condition – that he could not take Job’s life. Satan spewed every kind of sorrow upon Job, taking away his children, his wealth, his health.
But what Satan didn’t know, what he couldn’t have expected, was for the goodness of God to show up in the very spaces that were designed to crush. In the crushing weight of loss and disappointment, God did what He always does. He met him there.
And as He met him there, He lifted Job’s eyes to a greater understanding of who his God was. And from that place of revelation, Job was restored…ten-fold!
And so are we! Think about the redemption thread that is woven all throughout scripture, culminating in the ultimate sorrow and injustice of Jesus on that cross. And look what God did with that?!?
THAT is why I smile. That is why I am not afraid, but the enemy is.
Because if God could take the injustice and awfulness of the cross and do what He did with that, what could I possibly be afraid of?
No. I am not afraid (and you don’t have to be, either, my friends), but the enemy sure is. He knows his days are numbered and he is utterly defeated.
The Father cannot cease to be anything but who He is…and He is always good.
He is always working.
He is always redeeming.
He makes a way where there seems to be no way.
He makes beauty out of ashes.
It’s what He does.
So, no, I am not afraid. When this world and our circumstances rail and rage – just wait – I promise you that what the enemy meant for evil, He will use for good.
The song I want to share with you today is from Casting Crowns and is the newest release off their upcoming album Only Jesus, entitled, “Hands of the Potter.” When I first heard it, I couldn’t help but remember the first time I sat in my own pile of ashes and wondered what on earth God could make of it. Broken beyond what I thought could be repaired, I asked Him who I was. His answer was simple.
“You are mine.”
I’m ok with that. Who we belong to has nothing to do with the circumstances that surround us. But it has everything to do with His storyline at work in us. Who He is and who you are in Him is gonna (and already has!) impact the world for eternity.
So, turn the tables on the enemy today and remind him that he is a chained dog. Don’t let him have one more sentence in your storyline. It doesn’t belong to him anyway.
With joy for the journey,