I feel like I’ve been under attack. Not by people, but by that pesky evil one! Anyone else been feeling this way? Anyone else feel like it’s one thing after another right now? Ephesians 6:12 says…For our struggle is not against flesh and blood, but against the rulers, against the authorities, against the powers of this dark world and against the spiritual forces of evil in the heavenly realms.
Man (oh man!) do I feel exhausted, beat down, helpless, useless, and just plain sad! And yet, as I sit here wallowing in my pity party, in my ‘woe is me’ train of thought, this verse pops into my head… (Wait, did I hear that? Yup, that’s the holy spirit talking!)
Consider it pure joy, my brothers and sisters, whenever you face trials of many kinds, because you know that the testing of your faith produces perseverance. James 1:2-3
So let me get this right, God, I’m supposed to consider this ‘pure joy’? Exactly how do I feel joy in these times when all I want to do is have a pity party? As I open my bible to this verse and read further, to my surprise it says…
Let perseverance finish it’s work so that you may be made mature and complete, not lacking anything. James 1:4
You mean there’s more? I’m not done? Can’t I just wallow in my own misery for a while? Can I be done yeeeet? (Said with a whiny voice) But I mean really, can I??? Then I realize the longer I sit in my pity party, the more I’m giving the devil a foothold in my life. The bible says…
Be alert and of sober mind. Your enemy the devil prowls around like a roaring lion looking for someone to devour. 1 Peter 5:8
When I’m wallowing in my pity party, I’m not being alert and of sound mind. When I’m living in my pity party, the only voice I’m allowing in my head is the devil’s. When I’m wallowing in my pity party, I’m not allowing God’s sweet whisper to come through and remind me how much He loves me. How He has never left me. How much He desperately wants to hear from me.
The Message version of this verse says this…
‘Keep a cool head. Stay alert. The devil is poised to pounce, and would like nothing better than to catch you napping. (Or in my case, stuck in a pity party) Keep your guard up. You’re not the only ones plunged into these hard times. It’s the same with Christians all over the world. So keep a firm grip on the faith. The suffering won’t last forever. It won’t be long before this generous God who has great plans for us in Christ – eternal and glorious plans they are – will have you put together and on your feet for good. He gets the last word; yes, He does.’ 1 Peter 5:8-11
Wow!! Are you sure I’m not the only one, God? Cause it sure feels like it! The devil loves to make us feel alone though. Which will cause pity parties all over the place! And where there are pity parties, there is loss of faith. Where there is loss of faith, there is loss of trust in God. And when we’re not trusting, we are losing hope. It’s a domino effect. The enemies sly way of wearing us down.
So we need to put on the full armor of God. We need to put on…
The belt of truth, the breastplate of righteousness, the shield of faith, the helmet of salvation, and hold onto the sword of the spirit.
We need to pray on ALL occasions. Even when we don’t feel like it. Even when we just want to sit in our pity party. Because our heavenly father is GOOD! He is ALWAYS good! And He has good plans for us!
‘For I know the plans I have for you,’ declares the Lord, ‘plans to prosper you and not to harm you. Plans to give you hope and a future.’ Jeremiah 29:11
I’m starting to feel that joy that James was talking about now. I’m starting to remember that God is in control and these bad times won’t last forever. And tomorrow, if I want to start a pity party again, I’ll pick up His word and His truths, and flood my mind with them again.