Tag Archive | Fiery Darts: Satan’s Weapon of Choice

Suffering can make us stronger OR it can weaken us. We choose!

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John 16:33, I have told you these things so that in Me you may have peace. You will have suffering in this world. Be courageous! I have conquered the world.

    When God created our world, everything was perfect and in balance. This was His plan for us. He wanted so much for us to enjoy His gift of creation.

     However, Satan with his evil ways entered the picture and enticed Adam and Eve to sin.  Suffering was an unavoidable consequence of Satan’s intrusion.

So where did that leave us?

     Because of God’s great love for mankind, He came up with a plan to redeem us. He introduced His plan in the Old Testament with the promised Messiah. It was fulfilled in the New Testament by Jesus.

     Man’s sin, set in motion Satan’s evil plans to destroy mankind. Satan stays busy manipulating those unaware of his plan with the lies of fiery darts. Fiery darts originating with our flesh. That is man’s will not controlled by the Truths of God’s Word. Fiery darts expounded by the worldview of a society apart from God. Fiery darts introduced into our minds by Satan.

     These sources will attempt to convince us that suffering is to be avoided. When it happens we try to escape it. In doing so we deny ourselves the very thing that will strengthen our ability to live life more victoriously.

Therefore, suffering is meant to equip our faith to endure the trials of life in order to mature us! By desiring that God remove our suffering, we shut ourselves off from the opportunity to learn how to become more like Christ and to be a testimony to others who are suffering. p. 58 FD’s 3rdedition

     Souls nourished by the Truths of Scripture understand that suffering is a fact of life. It cannot be avoided. As we learn through our suffering, we are less likely to be overwhelmed by it. Instead we build a testimony of how to overcome suffering. A testimony that will comfort others with the comfort God gave us. 

He comforts us in all our affliction, so that we may be able to comfort those who are in any kind of affliction, through the comfort we ourselves receive from God. 2 Corinthians 1:4

The Shack: How do we respond?

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There’s a lot being said about the new movie, based on the best seller, The Shack. 

   Therefore, I have felt moved to address the issues concerning this book from the perspective of my book, Fiery Darts: Satan’s Weapon of Choice. I will not be recommending or criticizing this book. What I hope to do is to encourage my readers to examine the thoughts put forth in this book (and more recently the movie) to see how they line up with the Truths of Scripture. 

Why? Because millions are reading this book.

   And due to the controversial content concerning spiritual matters such as the Trinity, Submission, Free Will, Forgiveness, Scripture and Revelation, and Salvation many could become confused. As a result, we need to be able to discern what is Truth regarding these matters from what is not. 

 . . . the more familiar we become with God’s Word, the more determined our will becomes in choosing the way of Christ, as we ward off the Enemy’s fiery darts with specific verses. p 63-64, 3rd edition FD

   Throughout my book, I emphasize the importance of becoming familiar with the Truths of God’s Word. This is our greatest protection against the lies of fiery darts. 

By tempting us not to spend time in God’s Word, our ability to recognize the lies of fiery darts is equally diminished,. . . In the place of God’s Truth, the world’s concept of truth (which is no truth at all) begins to define our thinking. p 35-36, 3rd edition FD 

So it comes down to this:

   Those who base their view of God on the Bible, should stand ready to help those whose view of God is based on something other than the Bible. Because this book raises questions about God that will need clarification. 

I recommend the perspective this author takes on the book:

we must also realize that, because of the emotional impact of reading good fiction, it can be easy to allow it to become manipulative and to allow the emotion of a moment to bypass our ability to discern what is true and what is not. This is another thing the reader must keep in mind. We cannot trust our laughter or our tears but must allow our powers of discernment to be trained to distinguish good from evil (see Hebrews 5:14). Discernment is primarily a Spirit- empowered discipline of the mind rather than an emotional response.

Thanks for my trials!

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give thanks in all circumstances; for this is God’s will for you in Christ Jesus. 1 Thessalonians 5:8

In All circumstances?

How can we be thankful for the not so good circumstances?

   I have come to understand the answer to this question quite vividly as I was counseled by God during the writing of Fiery Darts.

   For too many years, my walk with God was characterized by more defeat than victory. Then, just a few years ago, I began to experience a gradual, yet powerful, transformation in my faith walk. As God continued to shed light on the darkness, which had plagued my walk with Him, I began to identify the source of my defeat. It became glaringly clear that negative thinking was at the core of my problematic walk with God. p. 14  FD 3rd edition

The Results?

   I learned to identify the great civil war (p.44 FD) that was going on within me. Eventually, I became more skilled in  distinguishing between the thoughts originating from my flesh, my natural bent, and those which were being whispered to me by God.      

     Finally, the attacks from my enemy, which were designed for my defeat, began to fall short of their mark. With every trial, I gained more strength, as long as I saw it from God’s perspective and rejected the fiery darts!

Consider it pure joy, my brothers and sisters,[a] whenever you face trials of many kinds,  because you know that the testing of your faith produces perseverance. James 1:2-3 NIV

The reason I can be thankful for the trials?

    Some trials I continue to wrestle with! But now instead of despair, I know joy. Instead of defeat, I know victory! It’s God’s battle plan for our trials. 

to bestow on them a crown of beauty
instead of ashes,
the oil of joy
instead of mourning,
and a garment of praise
instead of a spirit of despair.
They will be called oaks of righteousness,
a planting of the Lord
for the display of his splendor. Isaiah 61:3, NIV

Blindness isn’t always obvious!

 

She doesn't event realize that fiery dart thinking has contributed to her blindness!

She doesn’t event realize that fiery dart thinking has contributed to her blindness!

   Oh how my heart breaks when I see yet another Christian fall victim to Satan’s manipulation via fiery darts. And what disturbs me even more is that these very same Christians, who have been so duped by fiery dart thinking, have unknowingly cooperated with the enemy in allowing him to steal the peace and joy that once existed within their hearts and minds.

I know how it happens though!

Again I must emphasize the necessity to persevere in prayer and Bible study! We must grasp the fact that there is no other substitute. As we fellowship and worship in these two disciplines, everything we experience in life will be filtered through what we learn there. p 76 FD

May I ask you some questions?

   Has your desire to faithfully attend church weakened? Are you easily hurt or angered by fellow church members-especially when things don’t go the way you think they should?

   Do you find yourself dishonoring those you love by your words and actions? And in that same context, are your needs more important to you than your loved one’s needs? Do you become easily angered by those you love? Do you focus more on their wrong doings than you do your own?

   Do you find yourself justifying actions and attitudes that you use to reject as disobedience? Do you feel you are more enlighten now about such things and therefore they are no longer wrong for you?

   Do you find pleasing yourself or others trumps pleasing God?

   If you answered in the affirmative for any of the above questions, it’s pretty obvious that what you have been filtering your experiences through has not been the Word of God and prayer.

   Those who drift away from prayer and Bible study become easy prey to Satan’s anti-Truth thinking. Slowly and subtly his victims become blinded to Truth and the world’s concept of truth begins to sway their thinking.

Eventually, they will become blind to God’s Truth and they won’t even realize it!

By tempting us to spend little time in God’s Word, our ability to recognize the lies of fiery darts is equally diminished if we give in to that temptation. In the place of God’s Truth, the world’s concept of truth begins to define our thinking. p. 23-24, FD
So Jesus was saying to those Jews who had believed Him, “If you continue in My word, then you are truly disciples of Mine; and you will know the truth, and the truth will make you free.” John 8:31-32

The Force of God in overcoming downward spirals!

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A downward spiral is an concise visual of what can happen to a Christian who becomes more focused on their problems than God!

   Okay, now with that visual in mind let’s examine how a downward spiral can occur. Do you ever experience times in your life when the work you have to do seems overwhelming? There’s too much to do and too little time to do it! The stress builds and builds and you feel ill equipped to do much about it. You want to run away to some place calm and peaceful so you can be free of the stress–but you are stuck where you are and there seems to be no way of escape.

   And on top of all this, there are problems troubling your mind. Some of them have lingered around, unresolved, for quite some time. And always new problems, with no regard for the unresolved problems you already face, weasel their way into your already overburdened mind.

If the above is what you find yourself dealing with, trust me you are either in a downward spiral or on the very edge of it. You are being plummeted with fiery darts (perhaps you didn’t realize that!)

   HOWEVER, there is very good news: you can be rescued from a downward spiral! There is a force powerful enough to prevent you from falling into one or pulling you out of one.

THAT FORCE IS GOD!

   I would like to give you an assignment. I want you to set aside (daily) a time to read your Bible (I am going to suggest some verses) and crawl up in God’s lap to share your heart with Him and to listen to what He wants to say to you. And, by the way, keep a journal of your time with God. (There are journal assignments after chapters 3, 4, 5, & 6 of my book. A good place to start!)
   You MUST make this a priority. And believe me, at this point you have no idea of the pressure and distractions that will come to keep you from doing this.  (Just keep in mind your enemy, Satan, knows that you will break free of the bondage of negative thinking by doing this!)
   Scriptures are obvious in describing Satan’s plan in John 10:10a, “The thief comes only to steal and kill and destroy;…” (NIV) So what is it that the Enemy desires to steal, kill, and destroy? The answer is obvious – anything God has planned for us! p. 1, FD
   Even if it is only 2 or 3 minutes to begin with, JUST DO IT! The fiery dart thoughts will tempt you to wait until you have more time to spend with God. But you know and I know that is a cleverly disguised fiery dart. DON’T GIVE IN TO IT!

Now, here are some verses to get you started:

The weapons we fight with are not the weapons of the world. On the contrary, they have divine power to demolish strongholds. We demolish arguments and every pretension that sets itself up against the knowledge of God, and we take captive every thought to make it obedient to Christ. 2 Corinthians 10:4-5, NIV
Turn to me and be gracious to me,for I am lonely and afflicted. Relieve the troubles of my heart and free me from my anguish. Psalm 25:16-17 NIV
Those who know your name trust in you, for you, Lord, have never forsaken those who seek you. Psalm 9:10 NIV
Show me your ways, Lord, teach me your paths. Guide me in your truth and teach me,for you are God my Savior,and my hope is in you all day long. Psalm 25:4-5

   All right then, now you’ve got a place to start! Again, I recommend the journal assignments as you read my book, Fiery Darts: Satan’s Weapon of Choice.  

 

Hope or Despair? You get to choose!

He will return!

He will return!

 

     With the alarming rise of Christian persecution, many are looking up–searching the skies?

Why?

Revelation 1:7 Look, he is coming with the clouds, and every eye will see him, even those who pierced him; and all the peoples of the earth will mourn because of him. So shall it be! Amen. I am the Alpha and the Omega, ” says the Lord God, who is, and who was, and who is to come, the Almighty.”

    The purpose of my blog is not to discuss the 2nd coming of Christ. (The scriptures are pretty clear about that event!) I just want to highlight a few of the fiery darts related to Jesus’s return and expose the schemes behind them. Scriptures highlight one of the most common of these fiery darts:

2 Peter 3:3 First of all, you must understand that in the last days scoffers will come, scoffing and following their own evil desires. They will say, “Where is the ‘coming’ he promised?

     Ah, the fiery dart of doubt. Just add a little of that into the thinking processes and like yeast it will expand and increase. Leaving those who have succumbed to it, weakened and vulnerable!

     And in the light of the horrors broadcast over the internet and news stations of the persecutions and beheadings of Christians in Iraq and around the world, without the assurances of God’s Word, we become fearful.  Now we are dealing with doubt AND fear. 

     And good Christian knows that trials and troubles when dealt with according to God’s guidance will produce increased faith and trust in Him. Therefore, our ability to resist fiery darts such as doubt and fear will be strengthened and they will not succeed in victimizing us and holding us captive. 

John 16:33 I have said these things to you, that in me you may have peace. In the world you will have tribulation. But take heart; I have overcome the world.”

    Therefore, dear reader. Resist the temptation (fiery dart) to not spend time in God’s Word. Things may get a lot worse before Jesus finally returns, so protect your mind and your faith with the Truths from God’s Word. 

 Knowing the words that proceed from the mouth of God, in other words The Bible, then we have those TRUTHS with which to contrast the fiery darts from Satan. During times of weakness our vision is not always clear and we find ourselves vulnerable to fiery darts. It is in such times that we need to be able to call upon the strength available to us. FD, p. 36

IT’S YOUR CHOICE!

Sometimes, we just need Mercy!

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     Sometimes we struggle to walk the path that has been set before us. And though we are confident this is the right path, we find ourselves making little progress.(ugh!) This leaves us feeling doubtful and confused. After all, being on the right path should not be fraught with such experiences, right?   Taking our frustrations to God, we earnestly seek God’s wisdom and guidance by faithfully searching His Word, but the verse that would give us the affirmation and/or direction we need continues to elude us. 

When this happens, what should we do?

     I would suggest that we examine the thoughts that are producing the doubt and confusion. And ask ourselves the following question from Chapter Five of my book, Fiery Darts: Satan’s Weapon of Choice.

Does it produce confusion, fear, doubt, anger, inferiority, indecisiveness, jealously, or selfishness, for example? (FD p. 33)

     It’s crazy, I know, but there are times when in spite of our best efforts we seem to be mired down in the mud of our own negative thinking (you know, fiery darts) and progress just doesn’t happen for us.  Therefore, once we examine the thoughts, then we:

Apply the 3 R’s of fighting fiery darts (published 02/17/2014)

1. Recognize

2. Reject

3. Replace

 

So, join me in an exercise of replacement!  

God isn’t listening to me.

You hear, O LORD, the desire of the afflicted; you encourage them, and you listen to their cry,  Psalm 10:17 

I can’t figure this thing out.

Trust in the Lord with all your heart and lean not on your own understanding; in all your ways submit to him, and he will make your paths straight. Prov. 3:5-6 (p. 42 FD)

I’m not smart enough to know what to do.

It is because of him that you are in Christ Jesus, who has become for us wisdom from God—that is, our righteousness, holiness and redemption. 1 Corinthians 1:30 (p. 42 FD)

I can’t manage this.

 And my God will meet all your needs according to the riches of his glory in Christ Jesus. Philippians 4:19

It’s just too confusing!

 . . .for God is not a God of confusion but of peace, I Corinthians 13:33

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     Fill up your mind with the Truth-thoughts from verses such as the ones listed above.  (your own search will produce the verses that apply to your particular fiery darts) This powerful exercise will prevent the fiery darts from overwhelming you and sending you into despair when the answers are slow in coming.  And I have found that Lamentations 3:22-23, is just what’s needed in times such as these. 

Because of the Lord’s faithful love we do not perish, for His mercies never end. They are new every morning; great is Your faithfulness!