Stay Alert!

Donna Melby | March 8, 2018

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1 Peter 5:8–9

Stay alert! Watch out for your great enemy, the devil. He prowls around like a roaring lion, looking for someone to devour. Stand firm against him, and be strong in your faith. Remember that your family of believers all over the world is going through the same kind of suffering you are.

—1 Peter 5:8–9, NLT

I’m a nature lover. Almost every time I turn on a nature channel on TV, I witness the camera zooming in on a lion crouched low in the long grass, ready to pounce on a passing victim who is unaware of the danger lurking nearby. The lion patiently waits for one who is not alert. As soon as he senses the timing is right, BOOM! He springs on the victim, takes him down, and devours his prey.

Satan, the Bible tells us, prowls about like a roaring lion seeking someone to devour. Peter warns us to watch out for Satan and stay alert, especially when we feel alone and helpless, or so focused on our own desires that we forget to watch for danger. Those are the times we are particularly vulnerable to Satan’s attack. In times of vulnerability, we are to seek other Christians for support. James 4:7 tells us to humble ourselves and resist the devil. Then, he will flee from us.

You may have had the experience in your own life, or seen in the lives of others around you, what happens when we push forward without waiting, being still, and allowing God’s timing. Oh, everything can look just great on the surface, but we can become vulnerable when we rush ahead with our own plans, unaware that Satan is lurking and waiting quietly behind the scenes. It’s during that time that he can stretch his evil tentacles into the cracks of the foundation and can pull our walls down.

In Ephesians 6, we are told to put on the shield of faith, part of a Christian’s armor. In both real and imagined conflict, faith always dispels fear. We must take a stand in simple faith, believing that God will protect and vindicate His own. Remember, you are not alone. Christians everywhere are facing the same conflicts. We can’t just throw off the burdens. They disturb our peace and distract our minds but we can count on the Lord’s ability to defeat the enemy! In Romans 12:19 we are told: Vengeance is mine says the Lord.

Questions for reflection and discussion: When you feel like you can’t handle any more problems, what do you do? Do you have your “shield of faith” ready? Can you say you would take a stand for the Lord?

 

This week’s devotions were written by Donna Melby. Donna is the author of many short stories and articles, and has been a member of Wheaton Bible Church for three years. A widow with six children and fourteen grandchildren, her favorite verse is 3 John, verse 4, “I have no greater joy than to hear that my children walk in truth.”

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