Have you ever felt the adversary’s pursuit?
We have all seen those documentaries on television, where the lion stalks its prey, the one that leaves the safety of the herd, the animal that is unknowingly watched by the fiercest of predators. There are two vastly different scenarios that we see play out. One, where the lion successfully stalks the animal and the prey never knew what hit it. Then there is the other, where the prey’s instincts give the lion away. At that point, the lion leaps at its prey sending the prey running, heart pounding out of its chest, legs scurrying as fast as possible seeking some sort of safety. Does the animal fall prey to the lion? No, it doesn’t…not always.
As 1 Peter 5:8 says, the enemy pursues us the same. He roams this world continuously seeking whom he may devour. Once you begin living your life for Christ, that doesn’t mean he loses his interest in you. It means his appetite for you has greatly increased. You are now his most desirable prey, especially in those instances when you step out, and make yourself vulnerable, in times when you say, ‘Ok, God, I’m ready.’ Those words and those actions grab his attention. It is in those moments that we are like the animal stepping away from the comfort of the herd. As you make your way to the next spot of safety, the hunt is on! He doesn’t want you to make it to the next spot. In his pursuit he uses different tactics. He has studied you, and knows your weakness. He knows exactly what to do to try to throw you off course. His attacks will come in the form of a friend not being a friend, work stress, family stress, financial stress, rejection. He personalizes his attack so that it hits you where you are weakest in an effort to stop you in your tracks.
As Christ followers we have to be increasingly aware of his devices. The Bible instructs in 1 Thessalonians 5:16-18
Rejoice always, pray without ceasing, give thanks in all circumstances.
1 Chronicles 16:11 tells us,
Seek the Lord and his strength, seek his face continually.
We are also told in Ephesians 6:10-18 to put on the Armor of God. All serve as tools as a means to help us. Each are absolutely necessary in those times of pursuit.
I have found myself in such a time. A situation that comes to mind came in the form of stress in various areas of life. Rejection felt overwhelming, and seemingly came out of nowhere. I cried out to God in prayer and prayed scripture of promise, and my prayers felt numb, yet I knew God was there. I was also aware that my adversary was hot on my tracks. Standing in service days later, I was reminded that we are instructed to praise Him in the good, and the bad, we are to praise Him at all times. I took that thought to an altar and I praised Him for who He is, and as I was praising Him I was reminded that He walked this Earth and He experienced more rejection than any of us will ever know, yet He continued on. That thought was my breakthrough. God gave me exactly what I needed and brought me to a place of safety. It is with clarity and focus that the next day began.
Truly greater is He that is in me, than he that is in the world, He proves this to us again and again if we give Him the opportunity.
Are our battles with our adversary a one and done experience? No, it isn’t that easy, however if we are continuous in prayer, reading His word, and seeking His face, God will continue to pull through a victory each and every time guiding us to safety.
Maybe this resonates with you. Maybe you have felt the same as I have described. Maybe you have celebrated victory, or maybe you are still in the midst of the pursuit seeking a place of safety. If that is the case I urge you to let Him be your safety, read His word, and pray…Choose Him.
photo credit: Young lion stalking gazzelles – Mara Kenya_S4E0671 via photopin (license)