“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 (NIV)
This soothing verse spoken to us through the prophet Jeremiah is applicable to many lives, as it was then. At the heart of this message is a firm belief that none of us is here by accident. Earlier we find, the Lord had revealed to Jeremiah, by mentioning "Before I formed you in the womb I knew you, before you were born I set you apart; I appointed you as a prophet to the nations” (Jeremiah 1:5).
Many people assume that their lives on earth is by chance. Since the devil is a liar, he impresses on many that they have no purpose in life, since there wasn’t as much object behind their creation after all. Anything in their lives is purely by accident, and things just happen by chance. Knowing how powerful God’s plan is, for any life, the devil is of course sneakily fostering this lie, besides doing everything to frustrate that plan through his favorite weapon of deceit.
Yet through scripture we see virtually all the great men and women God used he had a plan for them long before they appeared. From the father of our faith Abraham, to Isaac, Samuel, David, Mary, Paul, Peter; all these, and more, their lives had been planned long before they came to be. The coming of Christ had long been prophesied 800 years before he appeared on earth: “For to us a child is born, to us a son is given, and the government will be on his shoulders. And he will be called Wonderful Counselor, Mighty God, Everlasting Father, Prince of Peace” (Isaiah 9:6).
Just as it were for them, so is your life, long planned out for a good purpose. God, who was behind your creation, wishes the very best for you his child, even as the enemy, Satan, is out and about trying to snatch this good plan away. Of course, you must not let him to.
Prayer for today: Lord Father God of Abraham, maker of heaven and earth, I want to thank you for I am not a creature of chance but you have a plan for me, and it is a good plan, which is continually being revealed in my life, this I pray in Jesus’s name.
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“I have fought the good fight, I have finished the race, and I have remained faithful” – ( 2 Timothy 4:7).
Fighting may be looked at as a non-desirable way of life, especially by those who are pacifists. In fact, throughout Christian history there are many who have literally taken Jesus’s admonition of “turn the other cheek” in Mathew 5:39, to mean nonresistance in the face of attack. The fact that Jesus rebuked the Apostle Peter for drawing a sword against his captors ( Mathew 26:52), means giving in to those who attack them, as a sign of humility.
Yes, of course there are moments where Christians must practice that humility and give in to those who attack them well remembering His word, “It is mine to avenge; I will repay, says the Lord” ( Romans 12:19). However, that said, Believers in Christ would be mistaken to imagine that they must not fight for their faith, whenever under attack. For in reality, the faith of believers is under constant attack from Satan, who comes to “kill and destroy” ( John 10:1).
Faced with this, Paul went at great length to advise Christians to “Put on the full armor of God, so that you can take your stand against the devil’s schemes” ( Ephesians 6:11). To ward of constant attacks by the enemy Paul challenged us to “Stand firm then, with the belt of truth buckled around your waist, with the breastplate of righteousness in place, and with your feet fitted with the readiness that comes from the gospel of peace. In addition to all this, take up the shield of faith, with which you can extinguish all the flaming arrows of the evil one. Take the helmet of salvation and the sword of the Spirit, which is the word of God” ( vv 14-17).
Paul is telling us that if you think that ours is a walk over faith where you are not going to fight back against the attacks of the enemy you are very mistaken. Fight we must, and hold our ground. The devil respects that! And when all is done, we can then gladly say, “we have fought the good fight, finished the race” and thank God Almighty we are free at last!
Prayer today: Lord Father God of Abraham, maker of heaven and earth, today I rise ready to resist the attacks of the enemy, by wearing the full of armor of God, and with the sword of the Spirit, fight back to victory, this I pray in Jesus’ name!