The first thing to go wrong that morning was that we slept in. Big mistake on a Sunday morning when you have three preschoolers and yourself to prepare for church! Suffice it to say that a stream of problems ensued from that point on.
The trouble turned my stomach into gnarly knots and tempted me to despair!
Becoming more and more overwhelmed by the litany of mishaps throughout the morning, I was poised to announce my executive decision: We are not going to church today!
… something happened that changed my mind.
Don’t ask me how it happened because I can’t tell you! All I know is that “somehow” I managed to tip over the sugar canister, spilling and spraying the contents over the entire surface of my kitchen floor.
THAT is when I came to my senses, realizing this was no common morning of mishaps!
The sugar debacle was the icing on the cake. Or should I say the icing on the floor!
Whatever you call it, I realized it was clearly Satan’s last ditch attempt to keep us away from worshipping God and away from being strengthened by other believers.
Standing there, looking at the mess, indignation welled up within me like a sleeping giant …
Instead of canceling church for my family that day, I heard these words stream from my lips: “Kids, get in the car! We’re going to worship God!” And off we dashed, defiantly departing from the sticky scene!
And I’ve never had a better Sunday!
And I’m glad we went.
The enemy roams to and fro throughout the whole earth seeking whom he may devour. We must purpose to walk circumspectly, for he is a roaring lion.
Roaring lions do not nibble at our toes — they go for the jugular! It would behoove us to remember that.
He doesn’t weaken us suddenly. He is more cunning than that. He begins to chew us up ever-so-subtly, one tasty little morsel at a time … if we’re not paying attention.
A phone call interrupts my morning devotions with God. Must see what they want!
I have to get those beans canned! Sorry. Can’t go to Bible study tonight!
I think I have a headache. I’d better stay in bed.
Company is coming and I must clean. I’ll go to Bible study next week … maybe.
I was up late last night. I need more sleep.
It’s been a hard week. I deserve a break.
I just spilled the sugar. I must stay home and sweep!
You can probably add your own list of excuses to this register!
Circumstances frequently entice us to avoid getting strengthened in the Lord and giving Him homage. But when we give in to the pressures of life, and remove ourselves from the fire of God and the burning embers (His people), Satan smiles.
And when we give in again and again, our glowing flame smolders and cools to a dismal black coal sitting on the hearth alone
… and Satan is downright gleeful!
There is hardly a Sunday morning or an evening Bible study that all of us are not offered reasons to skip — “GOOD” reasons to skip!
You are not unusual! Other people are just as busy as you are! Other people are dealing with hard issues too! But they do not cave — at least they don’t cave most of the time.
They realize that their relationship with God is continually being assailed, and often it is being assailed with good things!
Our cagey, crafty adversary comes as an angel of light.
Beloved friends, may we never allow anything to injure our relationship with God. And if it does get injured (which sometimes happens to all of us), we must take time and put it right.
Are there occasional situations where we must miss worship and fellowship? Of course! This is not meant to be a discourse on legalistic church attendance.
Our God is a God of GRACE!
This is simply a clarion call urging believers to pay attention and to not be duped over and over again. Be aware of what is happening and how often it is happening … and know the source when you start seeing a pattern. We have an enemy who is seeking to devour us.
Have you noticed how the more we miss, the easier it becomes to miss more? It’s part of his well-planned strategy. Be wise to it!
Oh, the blessing of being in a growing, vital relationship with Jesus when our world goes amuck — which most assuredly happens to everyone at some point in time.
(It’s a tad bit challenging to play “catch up” when the winds of adversity strike without warning!)
Let’s be prepared for whatever storms may come and be in fellowship with the Lover of our souls and His people!
Besides, you have gifts to be used! You have lives to touch! You are needed in the body of Christ! God desires your heart, and nothing is more important than making time for Him.
You can return that phone call later. God wants to commune with you now.
The beans can wait. The Provider of the bounty is more important than the bounty!
So what if the visitors see some dust on your end tables? Trust me; it will make you seem more “real” to them and will possibly be a bridge in your relationship, albeit a “dusty” bridge!
If it’s been a hard week, that is all the more reason why you need a touch from God and the support of others.
Apply peppermint oil if you have a headache. It will make you smell good! And here’s a novel idea! Ask a brother or sister to lay hands on you and pray for that headache! You just might see a miracle!
And if the sugar scatters across your kitchen floor??? What then?
Whatever you do, don’t give in to the vexation! Let it propel you straight into the arms of Jesus — the One who lives and loves and rules and reigns!
Leave that sticky state of affairs to be dealt with later … and walk away!
Hebrews 10:24-25 And let us consider how we may spur one another on toward love and good deeds, not giving up meeting together, as some are in the habit of doing, but encouraging one another—and all the more as you see the Day approaching.