12 deadly D´s sent from the evil one

Do you ever find yourself in a blah mood at times?  I know I have, and it would take a while for me to get out of it.  Then I came across what is known as the deadly D´s.   These subtle attacks are ways in which the enemy distracts us.   Perhaps you have heard of some, maybe not.

There is a warning to heed:  If we believe or fall for any of these, it will cause us to waver in our authority in Christ and get us off track.

I have a confession to make.  I fell prey to many of these symptoms until I began to identify them and only then I was able to put a stop to it.

Below are a few of the deadly D´s you may have heard about already.

Deadly D´s

Distraction
Divides your attention and prevents concentration.  You begin to look at what others have, instead of what the Lord has placed inside you, you lose your focus.  When you are distracted, it causes an interruption. You are pulled in different directions.

Solution- purpose in your heart to focus, and have a heart of gratitude towards the Lord.

Discord
Lack of harmony, disagreement, strife, fighting with family, friends, co-workers and even your pastor and church leaders.

Solution- Choose not to participate.

Discouragement
We become discouraged when we focus on what is not happening. It will cause us to be ungrateful and hopeless.  It will keep us in misunderstanding and we lose communication.  We do not come to the unity of the faith, and it keeps us divided.

Solution- Give thanks for what you do have.

Division
The enemy does not like it when the body of Christ comes into agreement.  Where two or three are gathered together in His name, Jesus is there in the midst of it all.

Solution- Just think what will happen when believers come together to pray and do warfare, we win the battle!

Despair
Despair causes one to lose hope and give up and may lead to depression. Our God-given call can take a detour. Don´t fall for the enemy’s scheme to place upon you unrealistic expectations and disappointments.  It is vital to ask for vision during prayer, to be encouraged and continue in your calling.   Vision is a powerful tool.  Ask for it, and see what God will do for you.

Solution- call on friends and those you trust to pray for you and ask for a clear direction while in prayer.

Demoralized
This destroys the persons’ morale, throws you into confusion and deprives you of your courage. When this happens, you stop everything, there is no purpose.

Solution-Lift your eyes to the Lord, ask for a clear and fresh perspective.

Doubt
You hesitate to believe and are uncertain.  You doubt God has called you and has placed unique gifting’s inside of you.  You can begin to question God´s ability to answer prayer in your life.

Solution- hand over your doubt to Jesus, and ask Him to replace it with faith.

Disappointment
Disappointments come from unmet expectations. These could be expectations of what we believe God should do for us or expectations we have of our spouse, church, children, Christian leaders or even of ourselves.

Hebrews 12:15 warns, “See to it that no one misses the grace of God and that no bitter root grows up to cause trouble and defile many.”

Solution – For that reason, we should immediately forgive, release and apply the grace of God to our lives.

Disbelief
The inability to believe or accept something as true, also doubt.  We doubt what God has placed in us, or even in others and lose out on the blessing.

Solution-place your trust and confidence in the Lord, and not in man.

Deception
Deception is very easy to fall into.  It is an act of making someone believe something that is not true.  This could be about yourself, your calling and integrity of God.  Deception is misleading.

Solution- go to others that you trust and ask for prayer, be honest and vulnerable!

Discontentment
Here is where we stop seeing the positive in our lives and become negative. You have a lack of satisfaction with your accomplishments, status and even the spiritual gifts placed inside of you.  Everything around you is in darkness.

Solution-choose to be content with what you have.

Disillusionment
When we become disillusioned, we may want to drop out of a marriage or a ministry or a commitment the Lord has called us into.  We can become cynical and lose sight of the vision, which is exactly what the enemy wants us to do.  We can´t give him the satisfaction of seeing his wishes fulfilled in our lives.

Solution-perhaps you need a break or some time out, that is perfectly fine.  I need to do this from time to time.  When I do have a chance to get away, I come to the Lord in prayer and ask him to hit the refresh button!

All of these deadly “D´s” keep us under a spell to self-destruct, to thwart God´s plan and purpose for our lives.  Don´t give him the pleasure of winning, instead, take control and continue steadfast in your calling.

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9 ways how Satan attacks man

It is no secret Satan has a hatred toward man, especially those that are in the kingdom of God.  He hates us because we represent God, and it reminds him of the battle he lost on the cross.   While Satan does not accept defeat, he is always out to attack us in any way he can.  Below are some of the ways he works against us.

9 ways how satan attacks man

1- Satan deceives man  1 Timothy 4:1 -2 Now the Spirit expressly says that in latter times some will depart from the faith, giving heed to deceiving spirits and doctrines of demons,  speaking lies in hypocrisy, having their own conscience seared with a hot iron,

Along with deception, he lies to us about everything. He lies about how awesome and wonderful we are in the eyes of God. He uses other people to hurt us with condemning words to crush our hopes, dreams, visions, and what God is speaking to us. These words will place doubt and unbelief in our heart. 

2- Satan blinds the minds of God’s people 2 Corinthians 4:4 whose minds the god of this age has blinded, who do not believe, lest the light of the gospel of the glory of Christ, who is the image of God, should shine on them.

He blinds man through deception, and we begin believing lies in all areas of our life.   He will also try to distort our Biblical World View

3- Satan is fierce and cruel   1 Peter 5:8-9 Be sober, be vigilant; because your adversary the devil walks about like a roaring lion, seeking whom he may devour. Resist him, steadfast in the faith.

I use to hear Christians say, ” Oh, Satan is a toothless lion.”  I don´t think so.  He has teeth, and when he bites, it hurts.

4- Intelligent and subtle:  2 Corinthians 11:3 But I fear, lest somehow as the serpent deceived Eve by his craftiness, so your minds may be corrupted from the simplicity that is Christ’s.

We need to understand Satan has been around a lot longer than we have.  He has wisdom, but a wisdom that is pure evil.  He is out to destroy the plan the Lord has given and guided us into.

He will always attack your giftings, always placing doubt. 

5- He tempts us   1Th 3:5 For this reason, when I could no longer endure it, I sent to know your faith, lest by some means the tempter had tempted you, and our labor might be in vain.

He will tempt you in your weakness, and only you know what that is. Its goal is to get you off track and cause a separation between you and God, and then he will place guilt upon you for falling into temptation.

6- He accuses us   Rev 12:10  Then I heard a loud voice saying in heaven, “Now salvation, and strength, and the kingdom of our God, and the power of His Christ have come, for the accuser of our brethren, who accused them before our God day and night, has been cast down.

Be sure he will remind you of your past sins.  Dwelling on the past will make you ineffective for the future. 

7- Steal, kill and destroy  John 10:10 The thief does not come except to steal, and to kill, and to destroy. I have come that they may have life, and that they may have it more abundantly.

Sad to say, but Satan is doing a very good job of this.  His goal is to steal, kill and destroy your hopes, dreams, plans vision, family, finances.  

8-He puts fear in us, influences our emotions  2 Timothy 1:7 For God has not given us a spirit of fear, but of power and of love and of a sound mind.

The fear in us will paralyze from moving forward.  

9-Isolates us  Luke 8:27 And when He stepped out on the land, there met Him a certain man from the city who had demons for a long time. And he wore no clothes, nor did he live in a house but in the tombs.

Isolation is a big one, sad to say,  many do not think so.  It is important to be around those that you can go to for prayer, advice, and counsel. In being isolated, you are unaware of how much of a grasp the enemy has on you. God has called us to fellowship, and it´s also fellowship outside of the church. 

He wants to keep us away from other believers, where we can grow, share and pray for others.

Now that you know and understand how he works against us, what is the solution?

Resist.  

James 4:7  Therefore submit to God. Resist the devil and he will flee from you. 

Once the attack has been identified, you will have the strength to resist, and he will run away from you.  He will have no choice, and in resisting the enemy, you continue your spiritual growth. 

 

 

 

 

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7 ways to grow your faith

We live in a very busy world. Everywhere we go, people and things are vying for our attention. It could be the latest cell phone, tablet, or book to read, the choices today are endless. Our families complain because we don’t spend time with them, our boss wants more of us, and we go to bed tired.

Our time is valuable.

Grow your faith

If we are not careful, neglect can set it. We need to be intentional about what is important to us,  how to prioritize and learn to say no to what is not beneficial in our lives.

One of the relationships we should never neglect is our relationship with God. We should not allow our spiritual growth to languish.  This should be on the top of our list.

But where do we begin? How do we grow our relationship and faith with the Lord?

Here are a few tips. It is up to you how long you would like to spend in each section.  Doing just a few of these a few days of the week and consistently, you will notice a change begin to happen inside of you.

Here they are:

Read your Bible. Yes, a very common one, but one that is often overlooked. Reading or hearing the word has become very easy. There are excellent Bible apps and even audio versions of the Bible.

Resist the sins of the flesh. The world is full of advertisements, and the world portrays evil as good. Sexual sin, pornography, addictions are strongholds. It’s best to avoid them then fall into their trap.

Help where you can in your church. Our pastors and leaders need us. Helping, even in the most minimum of way brings gratitude to your heart. If you see a void, fill it. If unsure, ask and it will be given to you.

Learn to surrender. We love to hold onto things, to be in control of our lives, family, and circumstances. But there is One who holds our future in His hands, and He really does know best. In a struggle, surrender to God and peace will fill your heart.

Practice gratitude. Thanking and giving thanks with a sincere heart causes the enemy to flee seven ways. Even when things are not going well, I am sure you can make a list of many things to be grateful for. Go ahead, say them out loud, and experience the gratefulness that fills your heart

Practice love. Learn to love like Jesus did. Avoid strife, gossip, and contention, and learn to walk away from arguments.

Learn to hear God´s voice. Yes, you can hear God´s voice and receive peace and guidance. There are many excellent books and teaching if you are unsure where to begin. I would like to recommend Mark Virkler Book, 4 Keys to Hearing God´s voice.

I hope these are useful for you. If you know of other tips, please share them in the comments, I would love to hear from you.

 

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What is the Gift of Discernment of Spirits?

As a young child, we lived with certain “activity” in the home which I deemed normal.  I knew nothing else, and felt what I experienced was part of life. When I accepted the Lord, I learned what we were going through was actual demonic activity.

Because I had experienced this side of the spiritual world, I knew it was real.

Discernment of Spirits

When I accepted the Lord, the gift of discernment of spirits was automatically given to me.  I am sure I had it before, as I was able to sense my surroundings. There were times where  I could see, feel and smell the demonic.

What is the gift of discernment of spirits, exactly?

This gift allows the Christian to know for sure whether a given behavior originates from a divine, human or satanic source.

In other words, whatever is going on, you can tell what type of spirit is behind it.

As with all spiritual gifts, it is wise to grow and develop them.  Here I list a few helpful tips to grow in the gift of discerning of spirits. This can also apply to other gifts of the spirit.

  • Read you Bible and become knowledgeable in the word.  Satan would love to plant doubt and confusion, much like what he did with Eve in the garden when he said:   “Did God really tell you not to eat fruit from any tree in the garden?”
  • Confirm what you are sensing with others around you.  It´s o.k. to make a mistake. Recognizing these mistakes will only cause you to grow, and the Lord allows them to shape and mold you.
  • Make sure you don´t judge, calling it discernment.  Learn to listen, and don´t fall into judgment.
  • Have your heart right before the Lord. Our filter is our heart, so a heart of purity is needed with any spiritual gift.
  • Operate your gift in love.  Some people with this gift can operate in coldness and be very firm.  Remember, we do not fight against flesh and blood, so please operate in love at all times.
  • True discernment is based on love, false discernment is based fear and not trusting.

Here is a Biblical example of the gift of discerning of spirits in operation.

Act 16:16-18  Now it happened, as we went to prayer, that a certain slave girl possessed with a spirit of divination met us, who brought her masters much profit by fortune-telling. This girl followed Paul and us, and cried out, saying, “These men are the servants of the Most High God, who proclaim to us the way of salvation.”  And this she did for many days. But Paul, greatly annoyed, turned and said to the spirit, “I command you in the name of Jesus Christ to come out of her.” And he came out that very hour.

What this girl was saying was true, but the Apostle sensed the spirit behind what she was proclaiming was not of God.  Of course, he was right.

Grow your gift

If you have this gift or any other spiritual gift, water it and have it grow.   How?   Ask God to increase your gift.  Look for opportunities to use them.  Look for others with this gift and learn from them.  Join a prayer/intercessor group.

This gift is very important, it is part of God´s gift to us to protect us from error, of which I am very thankful for.

 

 

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Are you giving out of your abundance?

When you think of giving, do you think of money?  This is usually the case for most people, but do you know you can give something far more valuable than money?

In the 9th chapter in book of Acts, Ananias was called by God to go see Saul of Tarsus.  Saul of Tarsus would persecute the Christians, and his reputation went before him. Ananias did not want to pay him a visit, but the Lord assured him he (Saul)  was a chosen vessel of God, to bear His name before Gentiles, kings, and the children of Israel.

Ananias obeyed, and in doing so, he prayed for Saul. What happened next was awesome.  Saul, who was blinded on the road to Damascus, regained his sight, arose and was baptized in the Holy Spirit.

Ananias did not offer food, clothing or housing.  He did not offer Saul money. Instead, he prayed for him, and Saul received healing.

I have come across many a Ananias in my life.  These were people that encouraged me, prayed for me, provided words of wisdom, and correction among many other things.   Because I have been received so much from others, I look for opportunities where I can give back.

I do not know how much of a relationship Ananias had with Saul throughout the years, but one thing is sure. Ananias was instrumental and a key part in Saul´s life, who later became the Apostle Paul.

What would have happened if Ananias did not obey God?

So I ask myself, how have I been an Ananias to others that cross my path?  Do I  meet their needs, do I pray for them, invite them to a cup of coffee or lunch?  Do I offer counseling, advice, encouragement or correction?

What would our lives be like if we choose not to offer of our abundance?   I think it would be a lonely life.   We all have something of value to offer; good conversation, guidance, prayer, support, and correction when needed.

Where would I be today had it not been for the many Ananias that have crossed my path?

I do know this.   All we have is from God, and He loves it when we give it away.  When we give, God loves to give back more.

Are you giving out of your abundance?  If not try it, it will bring joy and fulfillment to your life.

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How to overcome sin

When you sin, what do you think and feel?  Do you feel guilt, shame, remorse? Do you receive thoughts such as God does not love me and He is mad?

Many people,  myself included would suffer guilt for sinning. I  would feel God would be mad or angry, and would not approach Him out of guilt.

The truth is we can’t win God´s love. He already loves us with an everlasting love. Neither can we earn salvation, it is a gift from God freely given to us. Jesus died on the cross to reconcile us to God,  for us to have direct access to the Father. We are born in sin and remain sinners.

There is good news.  Christ blood cleanses us from all unrighteousness, and he makes us whole. When God sees us, He does not see our sin, he sees how His Son´s blood covers us and makes us clean.

This does not go without saying we should confess our sin.  Try not to focus on your sin and dwell on it, but do ask for forgiveness.  If we continue to focus where we failed,  we are not looking to Jesus who has the power to give us to overcome the sin.

How do we overcome our sin?

Focus on Jesus, his death, and sacrifice for us. Give thanks. In doing so, we are no longer focusing on ourselves, but looking towards Jesus.  Receive His forgiveness, and it is important to forgive yourself.

You could go deeper and ask the Lord the root cause if it is a continual sin, and receive healing in that particular area.

The goal is to be changed from glory to glory and to be honest with yourself.  In doing so, your service to the Kingdom of God will be enhanced, and your life fulfilled.

1 John 1:9  If we confess our sins, He is faithful and just to forgive us our sins and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness.

 

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Standing firm in the face of fear

We have a good size piece of property, and on the slope behind our house,  we have a small creek running through it.

I am not one to go down the slope very often, but my husband does with machete in hand cutting away at the excess growth.

His faithful dog usually follows, and as she did, she came upon a cat. As all dogs do, she began barking at this cat,  but what followed was surprising.

The cat did not move nor flinch, despite just being mere inches away from our dog.

While our dog continued barking, the cat continued to ignore her.

The cat would not hiss nor growl, and every once in a while he would look up at our dog, and continue ignoring her.

This when on for approximately a full 30 minutes, until our dog gave up and retreated.

Fear

This cat had absolutely no fear and stood its ground.

This is how we are to treat the enemy and the fiery darts he throws our way.

Life has a way to get in our face and threaten us, but if we just stand firm, evil has to back off.

The enemy comes in a form of sickness, financial lack, family disunity, wayward children and a host of other ways. A lesson I learned a while ago:  The enemy is the enemy, and it would be wise to recognize his attacks.

James 4:7 Therefore submit to God. Resist the devil and he will flee from you.

The word tells us we are to resist the devil, but in order to be able to resist him, we need to be submitted to God first. When we submit to God, we have the assurance that He will be with us in our most troubled times. His perfect love for us will cast out all fear.

This cat stood his ground.  He did not move or try to run away, and in the end, our dog gave up.

In spiritual warfare, retreat is not an option

When we stand our ground, not allowing the enemy to gain territory in our family, health, finances, and so on, he will eventually tire. We call on our friends and family to lift us up in prayer when we feel the pressure of the battle, and we continue fighting.

Only one party has to back down, and it is the enemy that was defeated on the cross through the sacrifice of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ.

 

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