You are not a winner in the Christian race by just being smart or intelligent (Ecclesiastes 9:11). It is not even your ability to finish the race that makes you a winner. Being a winner in Christ Jesus has everything to do with doing exactly what He told you to do (Luke 6:46-48).
And in these days of COVID-19 it’s very important to be careful not to loose focus in the Christian race. The devil has so many distractions away from the race that the Father has set before you everywhere.
Some are already being distracted by the things going on around them. Things like the people who are dying because they had not been vaccinated and the numbers of people who are getting sick even after taking the vaccine. The lockdowns and restrictions, masks and no masks are all distractions from the enemy, to make you loose your focus on the race before you.
All of these are hindrances to your faith in God, if you are allowing them to become a side attraction to your ability to live in your dream and vision.
The devil knows how to get hold of your thoughts and spoken words with the aim of causing you to get distracted. And you can’t really give those distractions of the enemy, as the excuse for not doing what the Lord had called you to do in the ministry.
Jesus in Luke Chapter 20:20-26 set a standard for us in tackling this type of distraction of the devil. The enemy had come to test Him in a crafty manner, just as the devil is doing today with C19.
The Bible says:
“So they watched Him, and sent spies who pretended to be righteous, that they might seize on His words, in order to deliver Him to the power and the authority of the governor. Then they asked Him, saying, “Teacher, we know that You say and teach rightly, and You do not show personal favoritism, but teach the way of God in truth: Is it lawful for us to pay taxes to Caesar or not?” But He perceived their craftiness, and said to them, “Why do you test Me? Show Me a denarius. Whose image and inscription does it have?” They answered and said, “Caesar’s.” And He said to them, “Render therefore to Caesar the things that are Caesar’s, and to God the things that are God’s.” But they could not catch Him in His words in the presence of the people. And they marveled at His answer and kept silent”.
Luke 20:20-26 NKJV
They wanted to trap Jesus in a crafty manner, but He detected immediately the intention of their hearts. The word of God came to Him in wisdom to tackle their craftiness.
The same type of craftiness is going on everywhere today with C19, in the strategy of the devil targeting Christians. His aim is to use C19 to create division among Christians. Be very careful not to run into his trap.
But Jesus responded to their craftiness in verse 25 by giving them a very smart answer. The enemy knew that he was defeated and immediately sneaked away from Jesus in silence and disgrace. Jesus never tolerated their controversies. He would rather be more focused on the mission from above, than on the things of this world’s system.
You can’t be mixing up spiritual matters with the controversies of this world, and not expect the devil to mess you up spiritually. When we are dealing with him spiritually with the authority that we have over him in that realm, we will always defeat him. But the moment we are taking his bait into his own system of operation in the world, we will be defeated.
As Christians we must be very careful to give to “Caesar” what belongs to him, and then be focused rather on our own calling to this world of evil and sin.
Being able to fulfill God’s assignment for your life on this earth, is what qualifies you for the prize in Christ Jesus. The ability to not only finish the race, but finishing it well is dependent on following the rules of engagement for the assignment, which the Lord had given to you.
The Bible says according to the Passion Translations:
“As for us, we have all of these great witnesses who encircle us like clouds. So we must let go of every wound that has pierced us and the sin we so easily fall into. Then we will be able to run life’s marathon race with passion and determination, for the path has been already marked out before us. We look away from the natural realm and we fasten our gaze onto Jesus who birthed faith within us and who leads us forward into faith’s perfection. His example is this: Because his heart was focused on the joy of knowing that you would be his, he endured the agony of the cross and conquered its humiliation, and now sits exalted at the right hand of the throne of God!”
Hebrews 12:1-2 TPT
This is how we are called to run the race – looking at Jesus; and not at the distractions which had been programmed and engineered against our faith by the devil. When you loose focus on the Christian race, you will be unable to use your authority in the Name of Jesus more effectively against the enemy. The lack of focus will hinder your faith from being fruitful, as the fear of the evil from COVID-19 is being applied into your mind, by the devil to stop you. This is one of the devil’s strategy to hinder your faith.
What you’re seeing determines your future
In using our authority effectively as believers in Christ against the enemy, it’s very important to be seeing things from the scriptural viewpoints. The devil will always put obstacles in the believer’s pathway, to prevent him from fulfilling his dream on the earth. He will put obstacles in front of you with the aim of preventing you, from running the race that has been set before you.
But you are in a higher position of spiritual authority than the devil and all his cohorts put together. Your faith in the Name of Jesus puts you in that position. And the enemy does know it. The devil and all his accomplices are bond to obey the authority, that you are exercising in the Name of Jesus over them. They have to bow to your use of Jesus’ Name against them, because that’s what Jesus said (Luke 10:18-19).
Don’t allow the enemy to play his dirty tricks on you, in his scheme to deprive you of the use of your authority in the Name of Jesus against him. He always plays dirty. That’s what he does at all times. He does not really care about how sanctified you are in your Christian lifestyle. He will come against anyone who is associated with God.
But it’s your responsibility as a Christian to enforce your authority over him at all times. It’s not the responsibility of your friends or leaders. You are the one who has the authority, and only you can use it effectively to defeat him. The devil needs to know that you do know who you are with the use of your authority. He needs to know that you are standing in the authority, that has been been given to you by Jesus.
Being able to do this requires our ability to be able to identify the obstacles, that are being confronted in the use of the authority which we do possess in His Name. We must be able to spiritually discern, the strategies of the enemy that we are confronting as we pray.
This is only possible and effective as you are listening to the voice of the Holy Spirit in you. Being spiritually alert in this way means that, your spiritual antennas are active and ready, to pick up signals from the Holy Spirit who lives in you. The devil has new strategies with every move that he is making against you, especially if you had been beating him with his dirty tricks before.
That’s why it’s important to pause oftentimes during this pandemic and reconsider the decisions, that you are making with your daily choices of living. The scriptures are always there to guide you through the though decision making process. Read it, study it more and more during this pandemic, so as to get access into the wisdom of God. Meditate on it day and night, because your fruitfulness with your going out and coming in depends on it.
You can’t be calling those bubbles bumps!
Just because you had beaten the devil before does not means that, he will not come back against you again. The Bible says that after Jesus had overcome him:
“And when the devil had ended every [the complete cycle of] temptation, he [temporarily] left Him [that is, stood off from Him] until another more opportune and favorable time.”
Luke 4:13 AMPC
If he sought another opportunity against Jesus, he will keep seeking opportunities to come after you also. He will keep coming back, because he knows the devastation that you will bring upon him.
But a good capability in spiritual discernment will help you, in identifying every new moves from him against you more effectively.
That’s why as a child of God who acknowledges the authority that is possessed in the Name of Jesus, you can’t be calling the spiritual bubbles in your pathway – bumps; when they are not really what you think that they are. You must be able to discern precisely what you’re coming out against in the spirit. The spiritual strength that you do possess is far greater and stronger than that of the enemy.
God lives in you and you have none of the world in you at all. That’s why nothing that the devil cooks up against you should come as a surprise to you. The Living God who lives in you will always expose every tactic of the enemy to you. You can never be caught off guard, except if you had not been in the spirit.
That’s why you must always keep your direct line of communication open with the Father, by praying in your heavenly language and keeping yourself rooted in His promises to you. You do these as you’re focusing on the race that you are running.
There are Christians today who had been calling the spiritual bubbles in their pathway to success – bumps. When in reality they are just spiritual bubbles, which they can easily clear out with one strike at the enemy in the Name of Jesus.
Spiritual discernment is a sign of spiritual maturity. Spiritual babies will always struggle with spiritual discernment. But those who are spiritually matured are never in a hurry or struggling with it.
Spiritual maturity comes out of your numerous encounters with the devil and his cohorts. Your various experiences in spiritual warfare and the encounters with them will help you to know, when best to strike at them and when it’s better to wait for the fullness of time. Being able to keep that direct line open with the Father will help you to know all things at all times.
Every child of God has experienced some forms of spiritual bubbles, bumps and mountains before. But spiritual bubbles however will clear out of your way, as you walk through them by faith. They can’t harm you. They are just the distractions from the enemy that are meant to deactivate your faith. Bubbles can’t stop you, but you alone. They cannot hinder your spiritual progress either, as long as your faith is active. Just walk through them by faith into your new level of faith in Christ Jesus.
Have you ever seen bubbles stopping little children from running around? No, children do like to play with bubbles. That’s exactly how God sees what you are tackling right now in this pandemic. So why are you calling them bumps, when they are not? Bubbles can’t harm or hurt you. In most cases you can still see through the bubbles, as long as your faith is active and agile. So wade through the bubbles into your next level of faith.
The beginning of the race in fulfilling your dream, will always give you a great sense of excitement. You will begin to realize that all things are possible to you. But as the race progresses you will begin to see the obstacles, that the enemy has prepared to hinder your dream. They may come almost immediately. Or they may come subtly and gently. But they will always come, and you’ve got to always be ready before they come.
Some of them are the little things that are designed to prevent you from focusing on the dream. Others may be strong opposition that may come with persecution against you. No matter what they are, your authority in the Name of Jesus can destroy them.
“For assuredly, I say to you, whoever says to this mountain, ‘Be removed and be cast into the sea,’ and does not doubt in his heart, but believes that those things he says will be done, he will have whatever he says.”
Mark 11:23 NKJV
Have you ever confronted a spiritual mountain before? It’s tougher to confront than a spiritual bump. And spiritual bubbles are not even anything close to it. But Jesus said that the mountain will move, when you use your authority in His Name to issue the word of command, for it to get out of your way.
In most cases you don’t even need to speak to the spiritual bubbles. They will clear out of your way, as you keep on progressing in your dream by faith. And spiritual bumps can often be scaled over. Bumps can’t stop you. Just jump over them.
As David once said:
“For You are my lamp, O LORD; The LORD shall enlighten my darkness. For by You I can run against a troop; By my God I can leap over a wall.”
II Samuel 22:29-30 NKJV
Bumps and walls can be walked over or jumped over, because the Lord gives you the spiritual discernment to enlighten your pathway. That’s why praying in the spirit until spiritual discernment comes is very important. It will save you a lot of time, material, financial and spiritual strength in this warfare. You don’t need to be wasting your spiritual strength most especially on the things, that can easily be removed by exercising your authority in the Name of Jesus.
This is the moment for you to be trusting in God, and never allow yourself to be distracted by those obstacles of the enemy before you. You had made the good choice to begin the race by faith. Run the race to finish well.
Choose to do things by faith always
Now it’s important to learn how to trust in God to give you the wisdom and the spiritual strength, in finishing well what you had started. He will brighten your pathway to the end.
The Bible says:
“The steps of a [good] man are directed and established by the Lord when He delights in his way [and He busies Himself with his every step].”
Psalm 37:23 AMPC
Your every move must be coming out of the good choices that you are making with every decision. The Lord has your back in those godly choices. Even when it may seem like nothing is happening with those decisions, God is doing something that you can’t see behind the scene. You will need to see Him busying Himself with your every step with the eye of faith.
He knows how the devil can use the things that are revealed to you against you. That’s why God will often prevent us from seeing, what He is doing behind the scenes. But as long as you are being kept in the peace of God (Philippians 4:7), you know that your outcome with every step of your faith is going to be great.
This is the spiritual link for not having bad things come your way, with the choices that you are making. Your faith needs the agility to be proactive in this type of situation. The choice to be in a hurry or to tarry in the presence of God, by standing on the authority of His word and prayer, can determine whether you will have bad things come your way or not.
These are very important things that can determine the outcome of your life with your dream. And it’s only a matter of your own choices. Nobody will make any decision about those things for you. But you will have to answer before God for the choices, that you are making with those decisions.
That’s why your faith must be proactive. The faith that is not proactive is as good as dead. Hurrying from the presence of the Lord, just because you’re running late for an appointment can cost you a lot of things in your life. Such a decision can cost you a lot more than you can ever envisage. And in some cases it had cost some people the destinies of their lives.
It’s always better to stay and tarry in God’s presence, until He tells you or signals to you about your next move. Keep on doing the last thing that He told you to do, until He tells you something different. Many have missed their ways with God by not spending enough quality time in His presence. They are not listening to hear God.
But they have been running out of His presence, with the false illusion that they are pursuing their personal dream agenda by faith. Evidently they are out of the perfect will of God, by putting their personal agenda above God’s plan for their lives.
We however do know that faith comes by listening to hear God’s word. And God’s word comes through His inner voice to us. Faith in God comes to us with supernatural discipline. And supernatural discipline comes only by learning to wait on the Lord. If you’re not ready to wait on the Lord, you will never be spiritually disciplined.
Supernatural discipline will give you supernatural disposition. And if you’re not spiritually disposed, you can never be ready to be used of the Lord. Spiritual disposition will get you ready and available to do anything, that God tells you to do. The Holy Spirit will always give you the direction, if only you are patient enough in His presence.
One second away from the presence of God can cause you, to miss out of the answer that you had been waiting for. The solution is on your fingertips. But the choice to not tarry enough in His presence can cause you to miss it.
Don’t give in to those pressures
Many bad or good things in life had been derailed by the consequential actions of the believer to either pray or not to pray, because they have so many pressures from within and around them. If you want to hear from Heaven, you must be prepared to spend quality time in the presence of God as you are praying. God is never in a hurry about anything. He has the times and seasons for all things in His hand. So why are you rushing out of His presence?
There was a time when I had made the mistake of not praying enough, for the Lord to give me the answer to my prayer also. I wanted to get out of the situation so badly. So instead of tarrying in the presence of the Lord, I had rushed into making my own decision. And I paid the price for it.
It became a learning experience for me as the Lord eventually stopped me, while directing me to His word. He spoke these scripture texts into my heart:
“But it is good to be zealous in a good thing always, and not only when I am present with you. My little children, for whom I labor in birth again until Christ is formed in you, I would like to be present with you now and to change my tone; for I have doubts about you.”
Galatians 4:18-20 NKJV
For several months the words in verse 19 rang a bell in my heart. I knew that the Lord was rebuking me. He was correcting me, and He was instructing and directing my pathway all at the same time. It became the greatest moment in my life, because I experienced a lot of spiritual growth with the rebuke, instruction and direction of the Lord.
The Lord opened my spiritual eyes of understanding to see, what the enemy had prepared ahead of me. It was the moment that radically changed me. God began to turn my bad choices around for my good. He used the very weapon of the devil against me, to beat him to his tactics against me.
It had been the most wonderful experience of my life to have had the Lord Himself rebuking me, correcting me, instructing me and directing my pathway in the ministry. Especially in the calling that He had placed over my life. I learned a lot of things in the ministry directly from the Lord, and very little from other men of God that He had surrounded me with.
But most of the things that I do know today came directly from the Lord to me, out of the mistakes that I had made in the past. It’s great when the Lord is teaching you things by Himself.
And He recently told me the reason why He allowed me to go through this path in the ministry. He told me that He wanted me alone to be responsible for the things, that are going on or happening with His calling over my life. He said to me: “I will work with you in every decision that you are making”.
Immediately I remembered the promise that He gave me some decades ago:
“‘For I will look on you favorably and make you fruitful, multiply you and confirm My covenant with you.”
Leviticus 26:9 NKJV
Sometimes the Holy Spirit wants us to pray more about the plan of the Lord for our lives, instead of praying about our own personal plans and desires. That’s when it’s important to make the choice to yield and sacrifice your own plans and desires for His own. You are never going to find fulfillment in the things of God until you do this.
The scriptures are there to guide and help you in making wise choices and decisions during this pandemic. Don’t be rushing and running – helter-skelter like a raccoon through the rabbit hole.
Are you satisfied with where you are spiritually today in comparison with a year ago? This moment of the coronavirus pandemic calls for a real re-evaluation of your spiritual status.
As the Psalmist said:
“When I realize that I’m going astray, I turn back to obey your instructions. I give my all to follow your revelation-light; I will not delay to obey.”
Psalms 119:59-60 TPT
If indeed the effects of the pandemic has made you to stray away from your dream. If indeed they have caused you to be derailed from following the last command, instruction or direction from the Lord to you. Then you need to turn around in obedience to Him. Turn to His word for guidance and protection away from the evils that are emerging from COVID-19.
God’s word will not only correct you. His word will instruct you. He will guide you in the right path. He will give you the direction in the way that’s meant for you to take. His word will also give you the strength to follow through with whatever He tells you to do.
And when you hear Him instructing and directing you, just do whatever He tells you to do. Do it quickly and promptly without any delay. Any form of delay may cause you the denial of those things, that are ahead of you in your act of obedience to His voice.