8 Be alert and of sober mind. Your enemy the devil prowls around like a roaring lion looking for someone to devour.
I was Youtube-ing various episodes on lions and the way that they attack. There was this one hunting group that was tracking a lion to hunt and kill and soon these hunters become the hunted, that is the lion crossed their tracks and started hunting them. As they were walking through the thick brush they didn't see the ensuing lion barely 25 yards in front of them waiting. In my opinion, if these hunters weren't together in a pack of men (call this accountability) I would highly doubt that the hunter would have gotten off the fatal shot that prevented him from being fatally wounded.
The Actlikemen conference really used a few catch words that grabbed my attention: 1) references to lion (sin in our lives and in our houses) and 2) legacy. Both of these phrases really inspired me to post on a few pointed topics through the conference.
This lead me to think about life as a man. So many of us want to prove things in our lives: Are we man enough? Can we be the provider? Do are wives look up to us? Am I the Man? Am I better then them? Have a made enough money? These would be things that are secular and worldly but still creep into the church today (old self vs new self). Then there is the Spiritual search: Am I doing what God wants me to do? How do I know what God wants me to do? Am I the Spiritual Leader that God called me to be? How can I keep sinning if I am a born-again Christian?
Let's take a look at two references to the Lion in our life:
Step 1: The devil prowls around like a roaring lion waiting to devour someone. (1 Peter 5:8). This lion reference is against a fallen angel of God. One who Jesus refers to the liar of all liars. He would want nothing more then to see us isolated and weak and caught in sin (or sin's snare) so he could devour us. Ephesians 6:12 says, "12 For our struggle is not against flesh and blood, but against the rulers, against the authorities, against the powers of this dark world and against the spiritual forces of evil in the heavenly realms."
- Put on the Armor of God daily - Ephesians 6. Don't take this lightly. Spiritual warfare is real and is ongoing 24/7. The devil and his minions do not rest.
- Believe in Jesus's work on the cross - Jesus was born of a virgin, died on a cross, rose again in three days and now sits at the right hand of the Father. Romans 10:9 says that if we believe this and confess our sins and call upon the name of the Lord - we will be saved. This means that our sins are forgiven! Our sins of the past, the present and the future.
- Do not do this alone - Galatians 6 Brothers and sisters, if someone is caught in a sin, you who live by the Spirit should restore that person gently. But watch yourselves, or you also may be tempted. 2 Carry each other’s burdens, and in this way you will fulfill the law of Christ. 3 If anyone thinks they are something when they are not, they deceive themselves. 4 Each one should test their own actions. Then they can take pride in themselves alone, without comparing themselves to someone else, 5 for each one should carry their own load." God does not want us to do this alone. God wants us to walk in community. Our brothers and sisters in Christ in our local church is family. Get involved! Join a men's group (if you are a woman reading this - join a womens group) and/or join a mini-church.
- Read Scripture Daily
- Pray Daily
- Repent of your sins when you slide - confess to your brother and allow true accountability in your life
Reference 2: When we have that lion in our house and we think that we can keep this "pet sin" a safe little lie in our house, from our friends, from our wives or work or friends or community - we are kidding ourselves. God sees everything. There is no hiding from Him. Steps to take removing this lion from our lives (this pet sin):
- Identify the sin (the stronghold in our life) - is it a computer? A website(s)? Our imagination? Drugs? Alcohol? Improper and unhealthy flirtatious friendships? Anger? Fill in your blank _________
- Deal with it - Read Romans 12 and Colossians 3.
- Drag it out of your house (your body is a temple) Put a proverbial bullet in its head - Kill that proverbial lion (end the friendship or improper relationship) Throw the computer out or put accountability software that does not allow you to manipulate the passwords. Deal with your Anger/Alcohol/Fill in the Blank _____. Get help, get counseling, join Celebrate Recovery. Confess it to your brother and to God.
What are some things that you have to do? Or would add to this post?