Getting Real About Life, about Love, and about God

Wednesday, November 18, 2009

The Devils Playground-- Independence

The Devil is real. I am not saying this to terrify or shock you. I am not saying it because it is a "religious" thing to say. But, the Devil is real and is a work in our world to keep us from following Jesus.

This being said, I think it is important that we don't give the devil more credit, or more power, than he deserves. The devil is not God. The devil is not like God. The devil is not all-powerful, all-knowing and in all places at all times. The devil is powerless toward God. The way that the devil gets to us is he messes with our thoughts. He gets in our heads and then we do the rest. The devil is a tempter. He works in thoughts. He gets us to doubt. He gets us to think opposing thoughts to following Jesus. He gets us to justify. He gets us to minimize. He gets us to thinking we are right. And the devil is sneaky and crafty in doing this.

I was thinking this morning about our need for one another. I was thinking about how we are created to be in community and how the more that we are connected to each other and love one another the more we reflect God. Then it hit me that the idea of independence is the devils playground.

We think that we can worship God alone in nature. "I can worship God in my tree stand." "I can worship God while I harvest." " I can worship God at home on a quite Sunday morning." "I can worship God with the TV evangelist." "I can do this all by myself I don't need the church." Then, we justify it because we can worship God by ourselves. We can pray during these times and we can read our bibles, we can think about God. We can sing songs if we want. We can do, all by ourselves, the things that we will do at church, or with the people of the church. So, we justify it and say what we are doing is right. It begins as a thought-- a thought of independence. And there we are independent. Solo Christians. Playing in the devils playground.

God did not create us to be alone. We shouldn't worship God just as individuals, even if we can, we where not created to do it that way. We shouldn't pray just as individuals, even if we can, God's design was for us to live in community. Here is the thing we can not love as individuals. We can not serve as individuals. We can not grow in our relationship with God as individuals. To become more like God means we will become more communal. It means that we will become more for the other and less for ourselves.

Remember how I said the devil is sneaky and crafty? He packages this independence in lots of ways. They are always thoughts that divide us and not bring us together. The thoughts are really infinite. The list could go on and on. They are thoughts like, "that church isn't perfect, i will have to find another one that better fits me." The truth is no church is perfect. The devil has you playing in his playground though.

How about these independent thought? "I am too messed up, I am going through some things that I don't want others to know about, my life is too complicated, people will judge me."

What we need is people who will listen to us. Who will pray with us, worship with us, love us, and serve us. What we need is to love others, serve others, pray with others and worship with others. What we need is people to show us grace and mercy. What we need is other people to help us through the tough times and to help us to understand God's love for us. We need to see lives that are touched and transformed by God.

But instead, our thoughts, keeps us playing in the devils playground-- independent, right, justified. Oh, that us what we keep telling ourselves. And the devil wins. All he had to do was get us to think about ourselves and that we could do it all on our own. All he had to do was get us to think that we could be independent. We do the rest.

The devil has no power over God and he has no power over you. Don't go playing in the devils playground of independence. Although it might be tempting or alluring, it is empty. Independence wont get you to where you want to go. We need each other. Don't let anyone or any thought tell you other wise. When thoughts of isolation, division, separation, independence, "I don't need others", and "I can do this on my on", enter into your mind don't give the devil a foothold.

Love today. It will get us off the playground.

In Christ's love and mine,
Doug

1 comment:

Renea Lynch said...

What we need is people who will listen to us. Who will pray with us, worship with us, love us, and serve us. What we need is to love others, serve others, pray with others and worship with others. What we need is people to show us grace and mercy. What we need is other people to help us through the tough times and to help us to understand God's love for us. We need to see lives that are touched and transformed by God.

Well said!!! And what we need is for this to be an everyday occurrence and not just a 'Sunday thing'. :) Praise God, share God, follow God DAILY, HOURLY. :) ♥