“The Lion of the tribe of Judah will be too hard for the roaring lion that seeks to devour.” – Matthew Henry
I was sitting in my living room before the sun was up when I read those words. And tears began to fall. I had allowed that roaring lion to torment me long enough. It was time to walk in victory. I was finished believing the lie.
“…He was a murderer from the beginning, not holding to the truth, for there is no truth in him. When he lies, he speaks his native language, for he is a liar and the father of lies.” John 8:44
We’ve all believed Satan’s lies at some point, haven’t we?
When I was a little girl a seed was planted in my mind. And through the years the seed grew into shame, fear, and secret oppression. I tried to brush it aside. I tried to ignore it. But every so often I’d hear it again, whispered in the back of my mind.
I’ll never forget the day when I was sitting at home with my brand new baby girl. I was a new mother and had never been more proud and thankful for a gift from the Lord. And there it was. The lie. Only this time, it was even worse. This time, it wasn’t about me anymore, it was about my sweet baby. And the tears wouldn’t stop. I was terrified and tired of the burden I’d carried for so long. That year I experienced a giant leap toward freedom when I chose to bring the lie into the light. Things aren’t nearly as scary when the lights come on. I spoke with a trusted mentor, as well as my husband, and began to pray against the attack Satan had launched on my life so many years before.
That was almost six years ago now. And although I have experienced tremendous freedom since then, the enemy still rears his ugly head every so often. And recently, when that old lie crept in once again, I decided I’d had enough. I would no longer be a victim of fear. It was time to stand up and fight. I went to bed telling God that the next day would be the day. I was fighting for freedom, and I needed Him to show up. And guess what? He did!
When I woke up the next morning I read Matthew 17:14-21 when Jesus healed a little boy who had been tormented by Satan. The disciples tried to speak healing over the little boy, but it didn’t work. That’s when the boy’s father went to Jesus to ask for healing.
“And Jesus rebuked him (the demon), and the demon came out of him, and the boy was cured at once.” (v. 18)
And there it was. What made Satan flee? The power of Jesus’ spoken word. It reminds me of when Jesus was tempted in the wilderness. The only thing he used to fight Satan was the spoken Word of God. What does the Bible say is our weapon against Satan’s fiery darts? The Sword of the Spirit, which is the Word of God (Eph. 6:17). There is power in the name of Jesus and in His Word. His Word shatters the lies. His Word is truth!
And as I struggled with worry for my children, these words in Matthew Henry’s commentary brought me great comfort AND a battle plan moving forward:
“This is an encouragement to parents to bring their children to Christ, whose souls are under Satan’s power; he is able to heal them, and as willing as he is able. Not only bring them to Christ by prayer, but bring them to the word of Christ, the ordinary means by which Satan’s strongholds are demolished in the soul. Christ’s rebukes brought home to the heart, will ruin Satan’s power there.“
And God wasn’t done! In my devotional that morning (Streams in the Desert) I read about God’s rod and His staff. I was reminded that “God always sends his staff with his rod.” I’m not sure about you, but I had not done much studying about a shepherd’s rod and staff. I wanted to know more. I loved the imagery I found about a shepherd leading his flock along a narrow path on the side of a steep ridge:
“…now and then the shepherd stopped and looked back. If he saw a sheep creeping up too far on the one hand, or going too near the edge…he would at once turn back and go to it, gently pulling it back. He had a long rod as tall as himself, round the lower half of which was twisted a band of iron. There was a crook at one end of the rod, and it was with this the shepherd took hold of one of the hind legs of the sheep to pull it back. The thick band of iron at the other end of the rod was really a staff, and was ready for use whenever he saw a hyena or wolf…coming near the sheep. With the iron part of the rod he would give a good blow when an attack was threatened. In Psalm 23:4, we have mention made of “Thy rod and Thy staff.” There is meaning in both, and distinct meaning. God’s rod draws us back, kindly and lovingly, if we go aside from His path. God’s staff protects us against the onset, open or secret, whether it be men or devils which are the enemies watching for an opportunity for attack.” (source)
God’s rod had been sweetly and gently drawing me back into the fold and revealing areas in my life where I had allowed Satan to have a foothold, or gain access. And the beauty that gives me more comfort than I can express is that He didn’t stop there. He gave me two very distinct promises from the Word of God that day that act as His staff of iron to fight that old familiar voice I’ve allowed in far too often. His Word is the weapon! His Word causes that “toothless lion” to flee. His Word holds the power we need to fight the unseen battles waged in the spirit realm. And as one of my friends likes to say, I could almost “hear his tail tuck and that lion bolt” at the Word of God and the name of Jesus. Satan is defeated! And God’s Word says that He (God) is not the author of fear. So when fear threatens to smother, we can KNOW who is behind it. And God’s Word sends Him running!
I stood up out of my chair that morning free. FREE. And in case that old liar ever comes calling again, I’ve got my sword ready and in place.
I am learning more and more with each passing year what it means to walk in victory. I’ve got a LONG way to go. But gone are the days of me cowering down in fear and shame. It’s time to rise up and live the life of victory Christ died to give me. Maybe you are ready to join me.
The number one thing I’d recommend is to get into God’s Word yourself. Read it. Study it. Memorize it. Ask God to speak to you as you get to know Him through His written Word. And pray! Pray God’s Word back to Him. But in addition to the Bible and prayer, here are three resources that can help you on your journey toward living in the victory Christ has already won for you.
Lindsey Wingo is the founder and editor of the Missional Motherhood blog. She is the wife of Worship Pastor, Ryan Wingo, and stay-at-home mother of four sweet kiddos—Ivey, Ruthie, Charlie, and Henry. It is her prayer and vision that Missional Motherhood would unite mothers from around the globe with the common purpose of raising up a mighty generation of Christ-followers in an increasingly dark world. Lindsey loves to connect with other women and to study and teach God’s Word. She also enjoys coffee and chocolate (YUM), sewing, game nights with her family, days on the lake or at the beach, and her current idea of the perfect date night is cuddling in the bed with her hubby while watching one of Dave Ramsey’s Total Money Makeover DVDs! (That is, if a night at the Cinebistro is out of the question…) She is an imperfect mother who has to continually remind herself of the hope found in the gospel of Jesus Christ.
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