Recently I shared a wonderful breakthrough in forgiving my enemies. Something very predictable happened on the heels of that breakthrough that demonstrates well how the enemy responds when the saints of God are victorious.
The Lord had finally gotten me to that place of peace and rest in His sovereignty with respect to my offenders. Almost immediately a “friend” approached me and said, “Have you heard about what they just did?” I must admit that until as recently as a few years ago, I would have eagerly responded, “No! What have they done now?” There’s something almost satisfying in hearing bad news about someone who has hurt you. But this time, by the grace of God, I understood clearly that this person was being used by the enemy to break my resolve to forgive and to drag me back into the dark hole and chains that had kept me bound for so long.
Doesn’t it seem that whenever you make a commitment to follow the Lord more faithfully, that commitment is tested? I call these challenges to our commitment the “voices of recall.” If forgiveness is your issue, the voice of recall might be a “friend” who is eager to help you be angry with someone. It might be a circumstance that mirrors your own predicament and brings the memory back afresh. Or it might be your own thoughts drawing you away from the Philippians 4:8 mandate to think on what is pure, just, true, etc.
Maybe forgiveness isn’t your issue. Maybe your issue is anger, worry, lust, or envy. Perhaps you struggle to become a serious student of the Word or to be a more submissive wife. Whatever issue has your name on it, the voices of recall come into play when you make a commitment to deal with that issue according to the Word of God. They shout loudly, “IT DOESN’T TAKE ALL OF THAT!” Or . . . “GOD UNDERSTANDS THAT YOU’RE ONLY HUMAN!” Or . . . “YOU’LL LOOK LIKE A FOOL IF YOU SUBMIT TO THAT MAN!” Or, in true Satanic fashion they mirror the serpent in the Garden . . . “GOD DIDN’T REALLY MEAN THAT!”
They lure us into lives of “moderation” when He is looking for women who will serve Him passionately, throwing caution to the wind as we trust him extravagantly, unencumbered by the petty issues that trip us up day by day. The “voices” dull our senses to what truly honors our God, and help us to be satisfied with mediocre lifestyles.
Even the Lord had to deal with “voices of recall.” As He made His way to Calvary, those closest to Him challenged Him that there had to be a less costly way. Surely He could be the Messiah without dying . . . “be it far from Thee Lord!” (Matt. 16:23). His response to Peter, “Get thee behind me Satan!” is instructive to us when the voices of recall shout loudly in our ears. These voices truly are messengers of the enemy. Whether the voice of recall comes through another person, a circumstance, or our own carnal nature, we must boldly chase it away, and hold fast to our walk of faith.
Did you make commitments to the Lord at the start of the year? Or perhaps in church last Sunday when the message really spoke to your heart? Has the enemy used the ‘voices of recall’ to subtly draw you away from that bold commitment? It's time to reclaim those promises and passionately follow in obedience. Let’s covenant together to spur one another on to godliness and passionate, radical service and love for our Lord. I get so excited when I think about what He can make of a truly devoted heart and life. I want mine to be one that gives glory in ever-increasing measure to our Lord. How about you?