Ever reminisce? Ever think back on “the way things used to be” and say, “Man, I wish I could go back to that.”? It could be anything. High school (really, who wants to go back to that?), before you “got old”, had kids, whatever. Funny how we spend so much time looking back that we usually stumble over what’s right in front of us. I do anyway.
So recently, “life” has been rough in a way for me. Somewhere along the journey of my life, I became bitter and I really struggle with that even today. I’ve found that bitterness and anger just taste bad but it’s like that ridiculously sour pickle that you just can’t stop eating even if it causes you to make that stupid face. You know what I’m talking about? (Oh and you parents that do that to your kid and get a laugh out of the faces they make oughta be ashamed of yourselves…just sayin’)
So, back to it. A couple of years ago, I got woken up to what was really going on in this place we call the world. The eyes of my heart and soul were opened to some very stark realities. There is an enemy out there and he hates me and wants to destroy me. And you. I am, of course, talking about Satan. So when I was woken up to this fact, it was a little shocking I must admit. I mean, I was raised in the church so it wasn’t like I didn’t know the Bible. I just didn’t take some stuff in there very seriously apparently. Like the part where Peter says for us to be aware that our enemy “prowls around like a roaring lion, looking for someone to devour.” (1 Peter 5:8)
So along comes Jesus and sets my heart free. He shows me what real life is like and helps me begin to get rid of all that crap that was weighing me down. He takes me into my wounds, all those scars I carry and begins to heal me with Love and Mercy. And some of that hurt…and still hurts, ‘cause the healing isn’t finished. He also told me this was going to get a little nasty but what He didn’t tell me was that, with His help, I had just painted a target on my chest for that little punk Satan and his band of trouble-makers.
Boom! Along comes attack after attack…lust, anger, bitterness (my old friend), relationships falling apart…and the list could go on. (And I sometimes suck at fighting these) Jesus didn’t warn me about that. Or did He? Didn’t He say something about that to His disciples, warning them that the world would hate them because they hated Him first? (That goes back to the whole not taking the Bible seriously) And it’s not just the world. The world only does what Satan tells it to do, only makes the choices it chooses to make.
Fine. Apparently I was warned.
But really? I suppose I should have listened to my brothers in Christ who warned me, heeded the words of Jesus. After all, why would Paul tell us in Ephesians to “put on the armour of God” if we weren’t going to be in a fight? So I should have listened ‘cause here’s the thing: I’ve discovered that we don’t get to just be neutral observers (sorry Switzerland). We have to pick sides here. Either you are with Jesus or you are not. If you’re not, then Satan probably won’t spend a lot of time on you. You’ve made your choice. If you’re with Jesus, you are going to get blasted. Get ready; it’s coming in some form or another.
Ever reminisce and wish it was “the way it used to be”? Ever hear that old saying, “Ignorance is bliss”? I must beg to differ. Ignorance is not bliss. Ignorance is willful blindness. Don’t be willfully blind. You know there is something else out there other than your own little bubble, you just don’t want to admit it. Hey, I’m not crazy about having a target on my chest either but I’ve made my choice so I guess I better strap it on and get ready for a fight.
My choice is Jesus.