I think sometimes, the deeper we find ourselves spiritually...the more intimate we become with the Lover of our Souls, our Creator...the easier it is to think that because we're at a new level of faith and belief that we will no longer have to fight the same fights we've battled in the past. No, we've overcome them and found a new level of freedom, right? Wrong. Know why? I was reminded tonight that the Enemy of our Souls is in no way, shape or form creative, or imaginative or sophisticated. His tactics don't change. It's impossible for him to change. He knows what he knows, and he does only what he knows. If he throws a road block at you and finds it unsuccessful, he'll back you up and try the one previous to that, or the one before that, or the one he used 10 years ago because he's running out of options.
I found myself tonight putting words to my thoughts that have been scrambling through my head over the last several days. I found myself surprised that the struggle I'm distracted by is even a struggle. This isn't right. This isn't me, I keep thinking over these last few days. Truthfully, this struggle never really was a major struggle before, years before, just a distraction. But now, because of my maturity spiritually and where I am in life, it's shocking to me that I wouldn't even get stuck in it. And how did I get caught up in it and stuck? Simple. I pissed the Enemy off and he went back to his list of "what throws Karen off" and picked one and threw it on my road.
I've had the most intimate, life-changing, dare I say Kingdom-changing encounters, with God through the Holy Spirit in the last few months, but last weekend was one of the most intense of them all. Three full days of encountering Him, learning Him, knowing Him in a whole new way, with the Holy Spirit praying on my behalf in a language unknown to me and most importantly unknown to my Enemy. When I'm praying in the Spirit, it's a language that the Enemy cannot comprehend, interrupt or choose to twist and use against me. He just cannot understand it, and therefore he cannot attempt to thwart it. I know that must royally piss him off. So, in anger and haste, he threw a road barrier at me and I didn't have my headlights on for a second there, didn't see and ran right smack into it and got stuck. The best part about this story is that although I was surprised I ran into it and got stuck, Jesus was not. After my conversation tonight with a dear friend, I left thinking, "thank you God that on the other side of that road barrier there wasn't a huge hole I fell in to. I just got stuck in the barrier itself, not the pit behind it. Even though, at the very last second, right before impact, I saw I was going to hit the barrier and get stuck, much like an out of body experience watching it happen in slow motion, I couldn't stop my car from hitting it head on. Still in my out of body experience mode, I saw the impact, and I saw myself stuck, but I couldn't figure out how to get unstuck.
Tonight, this is what Jesus gently whispered to me:
Forgive yourself, my sweet child. It was an accident. You took your eyes off the road for a quick second and couldn't miss hitting the barrier. But my blood has covered even this. My death and resurrection, over two thousand years ago, covered even this today. Forgive yourself, Karen, and then surrender everything back to me. You know, oh I know you know, I am the Giver of all things - life, joy, pleasure, satisfaction, love, relationships, favor, freedom. You know this to be true. You've experienced it before, and I am the same today as I was yesterday and will be tomorrow. It's who I am. So, forgive yourself and surrender. That will get you back on the road, driving onwards. My grace is sufficient for all things; it covers all things. I never left your side. I will never leave you or forsake you. I'll move you out and away from the barrier, and my grace will cover the barrier you hit like a blanket, making it now invisible and non existent to you. No more fluorescent orange staring you at the face, reminding you of the accident. Even more, my grace will remove any scratches or dents or broken parts from the impact. Oh, don't worry...there will be another road block the Enemy of your soul will try to throw in your path. This one didn't quite work out for him as he hoped. So he'll pull out another oldie-but-goodie in the next curve in the road, that split second you take your eyes off me. And guess what? I won't be surprised then either. I'm omniscient- all knowing. And my grace still reaches further and lasts longer than any road block or road barrier He can try to stop you with. And, you'll have to forgive yourself again, knowing you already have eternal forgiveness, knowing I didn't move or change when you took your eyes off of me. And I'll blanket that road block with my grace again. Don't you see there's absolutely nothing you can do to make me love you less?? LIVE IN THAT FREEDOM! It is for freedom I have set you free, with the gift of mercy and grace shed on that cross all those years ago. You are my beloved. You are mine.
These are the moments I live for. He's a good, good Father. It's who He is. And, I'm loved by Him, it's who I am.