The attack assailed me – swift and unexpected. I was turned the other direction, fortifying different strategic locations. A word. A thought. A deception. It sneaked in and lodged itself in a vulnerable and fatigued corner of my mind. Fiery darts robed in questions. Questions craftily construed by the Enemy.
They say there are no dumb questions.
But I say there are downright evil ones. Questions meant to condemn, not to bring to light.
These are the questions upon which our Enemy relies.
Who do you think you are? He taunts me.
The burning interrogation paralyzes me. The Accuser knows only a question is needed, not a blatant accusation. He needn’t condemn, only touch a nerve that triggers self-condemnation. He knows how my flesh will answer. I’m nobody, not worthy, arrogant to think I should attempt anything, others despise me and look on me with disgust. I should stay home, say no, retreat.
Only a second and a half does it take for my mind to be lit ablaze by my own untrue responses to ill-intended questions. I am overcome.
But I’ve been here before, Enemy. And I’ve learned. It may take an hour and a half to stand firm against what you started in a moment, but you won’t overcome this time. I don’t have the answers, but I know Who does. I have an Advocate.
I’ve attempted a steel-hearted approach before – sticking my fingers in my ears and turning my face away, hardening my heart with self-willed firmness against your blows. But my self-made shield is like jello compared to the defense I’m learning I already possess!
My heart is growing softer, and softer is stronger.
Softer surrenders to what is Truer and Stronger than you.
A softening heart toward the Omnipotent One is my greatest defense.
Go ahead and try me, Deceiver.
Who do you think you are, to counsel others?
I am one in whom the Holy Spirit dwells. I am one to whom the wisdom of God Almighty is available. I have been justified and taught of Christ. I am a vessel through which God’s wisdom can flow.
(James 1:5; 2 Cor. 1:22; Romans 5:1; 2 Timothy 2:21)
Who do you think you are, to teach and write?
I am one who believes the truth and listens to the truth. I am one who is supernaturally gifted to build up the body of Christ. I am one who is obedient to the call of God.
(Proverbs 21:28; Romans 12:6-8; 1 John 2:3-6)
Who do you think you are, to lead?
I am one who was created to do good works. I am one who has been given the truest example of leadership in my Savior – becoming a servant of all. He teaches me that leading isn’t about becoming greater than, instead it’s about becoming less than. You tempt me to pride, but God guides me to humility.
(Ephesians 2:10; Mark 9:35; James 4:10)
Who do you think you are, to walk in confidence?
I am one who stands perfect and spotless in Christ. I am loved. I am sealed for eternity. I am never forsaken. I have Christ in me, the hope of glory.
(Romans 5:8; Colossians 1:27; Hebrews 13:5; Ephesians 1:13)
The fiery darts of the Enemy assail me, but I know where my protection is. It’s not in a hardening heart, buffeting itself from destructive blows. No. My protection and salvation comes from letting an ever softening heart settle into an armor form-fitted to me.
When the fiery darts would burn me up and destroy me, I am untouched. Because my faith-shield was forged by the Living Water. His is a pure and powerful water able to extinguish in a flash the scorching arrows of the enemy. I am unscathed because I brandish Christ. He is the answer to all the Enemy’s questions. He gave an answer for us once and for all at the cross and when He rose victorious from the grave. A soft heart knows it is powerless to fight alone, so it robes itself in the strength of God’s might.
“Finally, be strong in the Lord and in the strength of His might. Put on the full armor of God, so that you will be able to stand firm against the schemes of the devil.” Ephesians 6:10