Monday, October 7, 2013

What Seduces You? and the Soli Deo Gloria Party

Welcome to Soli Deo Gloria!  This group exists to empower women to authentically share their hearts.  Want to learn more?  Click here to find out ways you can be involved here.  Before you leave, take some time to visit a new friend.  If you decide to link up, be sure to stop by your neighbor's place.  We want to make sure everybody at this party feels a little love!
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Do you know how many times I've wanted to throw in the towel?  How many times I've wanted to give up ministry because I believed I wasn't good enough or doing enough or saying enough of the right things?  Do you know how often I've fallen prey to the lies that I will never measure up, never be like "them?"  And I'm not just talking about the writing world, but also in friendships, parenting, marriage.  How many times have I labeled my words and actions as stupid, inconsequential, or irrelevant?

It's a battle, right, to figure out the truth, to stand in the light of God's presence.  Every day, we are faced with two choices: light or darkness.  John 1:9 tells us that Jesus is the true light (Greek word for true is alethinos, meaning real and genuine).  Of course, Satan wants to obscure the fullness of this light from us.  And so, throughout our day, he comes up with a variety of tactics in an attempt to throw us off course mentally, emotionally, and physically.  Looking at the image below, which words resonate with you in the pit of your stomach? Which words make you think...yes, every time, he gets me with THAT?
Maybe you have a different one you'd add to the list (will you share in the comments if you do?).  But the point is, these are the weapons he uses against us to stop us from living the full, rich, abundant life God has for us.  As such, we must be diligent about not only deflecting his attacks, but disarming him so that these weapons will not longer be useful against us.

So often, the enemy masquerades as light.  We convince ourselves that worrying will help us stay in control of the situation.  We think that if we get to this pinnacle with that prize, we will experience joy and contentment.  We think by hiding in shame, we are saving the world from yet another tarnished soul.  We believe the applause of men is worth enough to determine our worth.  And on and on.

But all of these things are like a flameless tea light.  Yes, there is light, but there is no real warmth that escapes it.  It's powered by a small little battery.  It's not a real fire that can burn in our hearts, propelling us to communion with God and dependency on Him as a source of true power and joy.

Verses 10-11 say that the world not only didn't recognize Jesus as the true light, but they also rejected Him.  How many times have I myself thought His goals and purpose for me simply were not enough?  How many times have I rejected His applause for that of my earthly companions?  How often have I put my stock in numbers on a screen instead of reveling in the fact that He knows the number of hairs on my head...and loves them all?

I've been seduced by the flameless tea light too many times.

How do we deflect the enemy's weapons and disarm him for good?  Well, we give ourselves some love paats. (yes, there is supposed to be an extra "a" here)

Praise:  When we praise and worship God, we remember His strength, His goodness, and His power.  Nothing can compare to Him.

Acknowledge:  Call the weapon (lie, shame, unforgiveness) for what it is -- a lie.  Acknowledging it for what it is and exposing it to light robs it of so much of its power over us.

Application: What does scripture say about this particular weapon and how can we use it against Satan?

Thanksgiving:  Giving thanks has the power to shift our perspective to one that is focused on God rather than ourselves.  Once we see what we have been given, we are less apt to squander it to the enemy.

Share:  Tell someone else about this battle you are fighting.  This allows them to fight with and for you and also notice progress in the battle that you may not have realized that you were making.  Encouragement goes a long way, friends.

The light of Jesus is our armor in the face of affliction and temptation.  May we all be like moths to a flame, clinging to Him and what He says about us.  We are worth so much more than what the flameless tea lights have to offer.

Here's an opportunity for you to give yourself  Love P.A.A.T.S:  Tell us what tactic the enemy uses against you and how you fight against it.  Then, pray for the person who commented before you, helping her in her own battle.

(I have a PDF of Love P.A.A.T.S. that I made for my class.  Want a shield to hang up to remind you how to fight? Email me at jenfergie2000 (at) me (dot) com)

Linking this on Monday with Michelle and Jen too!
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Are you new here? Welcome! We'd love to shower you with some love and encouragement, so if this is your first time linking up, will you put "I'm New!" as your caption under your linky picture? Want more info on what this sisterhood is all about? Click here.
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Want to show a sister some love? Tweet her post using the Twitter handle #sdgsisters. Make sure you check the # later for some great posts to read!
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Did you see?  SDG Retreat Registration is LIVE!  Click here for more info & the link to register.
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19 comments :

  1. Oh, I like this, Love PAATS!! I definitely can relate. My biggest flaming arrows are definitely worry - what others might think, if I fit in, if I'm qualified...

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  2. May Jesus's light shine like a bonfire, outshining anything and everything that tries to lure us away as a tiny flame. Thanks for sharing your PAATS format, Jennifer.

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  3. Oh Jen ... it's so easy to feel like we're never enough ... or we're just way too much. Don't you just love that He loves us just as we are ... and uses us despite all our stuff?!

    ;-}

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  4. Worth, feeling as if I am useful and that what I does matter...especially when I haven't seen the fruit yet. Hugs to you this week.

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  5. Um, how did you do that? I just posted exactly how the enemy has been bringing me down in my parenting lately. I'm so glad you just affirmed me today. :)

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  6. Jen - Love this post! Oh how this week has been flooded with "tealights" as you put it...flickering light, but no warmth!
    Rejoicing that, like you said, we don't need the applause's of men. We can have peace standing on the truth that our God is so far above any rulers, powers, or principalities of this earth!

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  7. Love the "d" verbs in the 1st paragraph -- deflect and disarm. You have given us a great tool to start the process. Love the acronym!

    I think the enemy uses fear quite a bit -- "what ifs" start raining down in my head.... I have to remember that God goes before me, so there is no need to worry.

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  8. Perfect post for me today...oh it has been a rough few days. AND you should have seen my Twitter post! Your line about the towel? That was divine coincidence! I tweeted that I was throwing in the towel earlier...too funny, but not! I will e- you for some love paats!

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  9. Jen,
    What a great acronym...Love PAATS...clever...I have many verses on trusting God and not fearing ...please pray as I leave tomorrow for a short trip to Guatemala to work with Potter's House...Thanks.

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  10. perfect post for me today also- the battlefield of the mind ~!
    I am nearing retirement and the enemy keeps lying to me that my period of usefulness is nearly over.
    AS IF ~!
    He's so persistent- I'm having to resist with all my might and asking friends to pray too.
    Thanks for this !!

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  11. perfect post for me today also- the battlefield of the mind ~!
    I am nearing retirement and the enemy keeps lying to me that my period of usefulness is nearly over.
    AS IF ~!
    He's so persistent- I'm having to resist with all my might and asking friends to pray too.
    Thanks for this !!

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  12. It seems like this is the topic this week from the sermon on Sunday to my own post. Get the mind focused on truth and off of the lies that rob us blind. I'd add guilt to that box up there. Your post hit several lies or questions that I dwell on until I'm useless. Thank you, Jen, for this important reminder~~especially the one to share our battle with others who can join us in prayer.
    Blessings,
    Janis

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  13. It is such a battle for sure. For me, I think it is the thought - that I will never fit in or be accepted. What a blessing to share & also get to pray with others so that we all win our battles! Thank you for this today!
    Blessings,
    Joanne

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  14. Satan often uses my own thoughts against me. You are right, seeing them as lies and not truth is the most important way to battle against them. Replacing the lies with truthful thoughts is the battle plan, but sometimes (often actually) talking it out with someone else can help identify lies you can't see for yourself.

    Christy @ A Heartening Life
    www.ahearteninglife.com

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  15. Jen, the struggle I've had lately is with listening to accusations (imaginary) from a coworker and spending WAY too much emotional energy 'defending' myself in my head. A friend at church prayed for me Sunday and spoke so many great scriptures over me--I'm clinging to most of Ephesians Chapter 1--I am CHOSEN, ACCEPTED, BELOVED. Amen~

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  16. Hi Jen,
    I really like the image of the enemy's attacks like little tiny tea lights...it looks like there's some light, but it's only a little flicker that will soon burn out. He makes his lies look like truth, but they are also like the tea lights...just enough to get our attention, to make us think they are truth. But when the tea light flickers out, there is no truth, just lies. We have to be careful not to let that tea light keep burning or the lies make a home in our minds and hearts. Then we are doing the enemy's work for him, on ourselves. Terrible how he gets us to do that, isn't it?
    Blessings,
    Laura

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  17. This is a great post, Jen. My achilles heel is disappointment. Once I learned that is where the devil likes to attack me it made me recognize it sooner and react to it better. Took me a long time to know that though

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  18. May His light shine through us! Thanks for hosting & God bless!

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  19. Jen - So good seeing you on fb, and now to read this! So glad we have a good God who doesn't leave us in darkness...but runs, chases, and pursues us....so that we can bask in His goodness! Always a blessing linking with you! ~ Jen

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