Good Afternoon Dear Christians,
Perhaps one of the most well known descriptions of Satan in Scripture is from 1 Peter 5:8. He is the "adversary" who "prowls around like a roaring lion, seeking someone to devour." Satan wants to devour the people of God, and he is wandering around, picking off the stragglers, attacking the unsuspecting, and hunting down the fool. Satan has a whole arsenal of strategies to find and to consume the people of God.
Perhaps one of his most surprising strategies is what we might call "coddling." What Satan does so often is fatten us up, fill up our cups, overload our plates. He wants to lull us into a false sense of security. He convinces us that sermons should be "entertaining". He tells us that church is "boring." He loves to lull us into a false sense of security. He convinces us that he's a good little lion who's really lost his taste for Christians, and besides, have we seen the latest hit YouTube video? Wouldn't it be easier to sleep in than to go to church? And just when we close our eyes, resting our heads on his growling stomach, we will be right where he wants us to be. And the last sight we'll ever see is him licking his lips.
So Christian, "Be watchful" (1 Pet 5:8). Stay spiritually fit. Stay mentally ready. Don't listen to his lies. Don't let yourself fall for it. He's coming for you. Keep your sword sharper than his claws. Keep your prayers stronger than his grasp. Keep your mind disciplined. Don't let yourself be coddled. That's what lions do to their prey. But Christ wants his people to be ready.
So, in that vein, tonight we'll be readying ourselves to face Satan at 6 PM, continuing to study Romans 4:9-25. We would love to have you join our training ground with us.
Good Afternoon Dear Church,
This week I am reminded that Scriptures tell us to "pray without ceasing" (1 Thess 5:17).
I am always amazed at how God uses that prayer. As many of you know, I pray for everyone in our church every month. That really doesn't take a lot of work. Each of you has a day assigned to a name. Most days have about 3-4 names. Often, as I'm praying for names on my list, I will text those people to let them know I'm praying for them. Many of you know this firsthand, because you've gotten texts from me letting you know I'm praying for you. Sometimes I'm a few days late. But rare is the month where I don't pray for you. Additionally, once a month, our elders pray for everyone in our church by name. Each of those prayers is something unique, something specifically for you.
You would be surprised, or maybe you wouldn't, at how many times God has used these prayers. Often, when I pray for someone (even if it is a few days late), it is at the perfect time. So often a family crisis, a hiccup at work, a child tantrum, or even just a case of waking up on the wrong side of the bed coincides with that prayer. Many of you can testify to that.
Of course, none of these things surprises God. He knows the path ahead of us far better than we do! There is nothing in store for me today, or tomorrow, which the Lord is not sovereign over. But then again, that is just as true for my prayer. After all, he commanded us to pray. He is the Lord of prayer. Perhaps when God commanded us to pray in his Word, he knew exactly what I would go through tomorrow, and he knew I would need to pray today to be ready for it. If God is ruling over my tomorrow, he is also reigning in my prayer. He is like a Father who never intends to do anything less than good for his children (James 1:17), but who wants to be asked by them nonetheless. God has given us prayer precisely because he knows what tomorrow holds, and he knows we need to ask him for his help. The question is, will we be obedient? Will we truly, unceasingly pray?
Tonight, consider joining us as we gather for a time of Word and prayer. We'll be walking through Romans 4:1-8 and praying for one another. We would love to have you join us tonight at 6 PM as we obey through prayer together!
Southern Heights Christian Church
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