God has been showing me some real stunning truths about how often we cripple ourselves and allow Satan to steal our hearts away from the Lord! He is so good at doing this and blinding us. I think there are three main ways that Satan steals our hearts away from being successfully used by the Lord:
Far too many people are image-conscious. They act like everything is fine and their lives are happy and blessed. They desire to be “up” on the latest trends and fashions – to have all the right “brand-name” things. Who are they to shop at K-Mart or Wal-Mart? Payless Shoes? Forget it! But inside they are unsatisfied and unhappy. They spend money they don’t really have – all in the quest to somehow have material items and achieve a perceived “persona” of being a success or looking cool.
There is always an empty space inside of this individual because it is not God that they are desiring more of. It is not God’s purposes that they spend their money on. And when you discover that this person is headed for a divorce, or that their son has been on drugs – you are surprised because they kept up a facade and kept all the hurtful details to themselves.
Image never brings happiness. Satan uses it to woo us away from humbly submitting to the Lord and being used by Him. To use our blessings for Him instead of simply desiring more of them.
Can you see Satan so successfully using image in the world right now? He has lured so many people with this false “ideal” of happiness and contentment.
Pride comes in many forms. Most people think it shows up in the boosted ego or in the person who thinks he is “all that.” But I think Satan more-often uses pride in more subtle ways. He lets pride hinder us by using it to block us from apologizing or giving in to a broken relationship and restoring it. We think that if we do, it will mean that what someone else did to us was okay instead of realizing that we will never be free until we heal and forgive.
He uses pride by making us feel like we aren’t good enough – we are failures. I think this is one of his best tactics! Why would we volunteer to do something or undertake that bold new endeavor? We could never make it work – right? We’re not good enough to contribute to things because others are far more talented than we are. What a lie!! It makes us and keeps us as a confined victim all our life. We will never enjoy anything if we always have objections to it and feel like we have to first – be a master at it to give it on behalf of the Lord.
Oh wow. Have we all let our hearts been stolen in this area? The thief of time – that’s Satan. We are too busy to play games with our kids. Too busy to use our talents for the Lord’s causes instead of other causes that just simply fill up our time. Too busy to relax!! Do you know that some of the things we are busy with – God had no intention of us doing in the first place? He gave us certain gifts and talents for a reason. And most of us are wasting them. Wasting them in an area that doesn’t bring us joy – we are doing it out of obligation or some other reason. But we are not using it to further the kingdom of God.
We need to really take a look at our lives and see where we are spending our time. Are we involved in our church? Are we investing in our children or in the lives of those around us – to bring glory to the Lord? Or are we filling up our time with mindless tasks that will never bring us eternal rewards?
I don’t know about you – but I want to make a difference in the lives of others for my Lord. I want to use my time to impact and invest in people’s hearts. If I’m busy – let it be busyness that brings joy, fulfillment, contentment, peace, and rest to my soul because I’m using my life for God’s Will and purposes.
I want to learn to somehow maintain a humble heart. I want to chip away at the pride that Satan so easily slips in to hinder me from being the kind of person that I know God can mold me to be. And I don’t want to waste my life by being a victim of my own “not good enough” mentality.
I want to focus on using whatever God gives me – for His purposes and glory. If I am blessed – let it be used to bring others to Christ. I hope that I can enjoy the material things here on earth – but not let them possess me in the process.
And I always want to be real. I never want to pretend I’m something or someone I’m not. I have flaws. I feel hurts. I deal with hard situations. It’s life. No “image” can make me more likeable to someone else who really matters or cares for me.
Satan blinds us. Let’s remember how he works and what methods he uses – and keep our hearts on guard so that God can truly use us. It’s the only way we’ll find the joy and true happiness we seek.
— Dionna Sanchez is Founder of Emphasis On Moms at http://www.EmphasisOnMoms.com