I’m not sure if you can sense it or not, but there is something quite spiritual going on.
In his letter to both the church at Ephesus and Corinth, Paul reveals to his audience that the devil has schemes (Ephesians 6:11 and 2 Corinthians 2:11) — systematic plans to disrupt your peace and joy, to discourage you, to divert your gaze from Jesus, to ﬁll you with doubt, to get you to feel disqualiﬁed, to discredit your witness, and to get you to take matters into your own hands.
In short, the devil wants to take you out.
In the same breath and stroke of his pen, Paul also says that we aren’t ignorant of his schemes.
The veil of ignorance lifts through familiarity.
In other words, the children of God should be privy to the tactics of the devil because he often employs the same ones time and time again; though, they may be packaged diﬀerently.
Although the wrapping paper may have a diﬀerent appearance and the box a diﬀerent shape, the contents remain the same.
This morning during my time with the Lord, I felt like the Holy Spirit had shown me that one of the devil’s great schemes in this hour is the scheme of PRESSURE.
Even though I wrote about the dangers of pressure in my previous blog, the Lord began to show me just how real of a threat this very thing poses to be for His people in this hour, and even I, myself, have not been immune.
I have been feeling all kinds of pressure to ﬁgure things out on so many diﬀerent fronts. When this pressure comes, a wave of confusion comes along with it. It’ll literally begin to feel like my head is clouded and like someone has placed it in vice grips and is turning the dial.
It’s a very physical manifestation to what is actually happening on a spiritual level.
Along with this pressure comes temptation.
I’ve been feeling tempted to act when God is wanting me to wait.
In this particular hour, waiting on the Lord is greater than doing for the Lord.
Sometimes we wind up doing things that the Lord never required of us.
Pressure is a terrible motivator and it will steal your peace if you allow it.
It also opens the door to fear.
Fear renders our spiritual ears deaf because we are staring at the problem and not at the answer.
What you stare at has the ability to speak to you.
The answer is and will always remain to be Jesus.
When ﬁnding an answer is my goal in prayer, I’m more than likely being driven by pressure.
What squeezes us is trying to determine our focus in prayer.
The last thing the devil wants is for you to seek the Lord and be intimate with Him. He’d much rather see you worried, bothered, and ﬁlled with distraction.
In other words, he wants you to take the position of Martha rather than the posture of Mary.
Mary’s posture was one of humility and it said to Jesus, “You have what I need.”
Martha, on the other hand, was driven by the pressure that comes along with being worried and bothered.
Pressure will hold you at gun point and say, “Make a decision. You need to act now. You need to be doing something.”
There is no peace in that environment, only fear.
There is zero chance that we will make a conﬁdent, God led choice when we are staring down the barrel of that gun. We must keep our eyes on Jesus.
Pressure wants you to strive, to ﬁgure things out, to try hard. It wants to agitate you, get you to feel like you have already missed ‘it’ or will miss ‘it’ soon.
It wants you fearful.
And it wants to manipulate you to react rather than respond.
In a recent sermon, I heard Bill Johnson say, “Jesus didn’t live in reaction to the devil; He lived in response to the Father.”
In a separate sermon, Michael Koulianos said, “In the spirit realm, we feed what we give attention to.”
The devil is after your gaze right now.
He wants you feeling rather than seeing.
I cannot aﬀord to stare at issues or at what’s wrong or at what needs to change.
I must choose right now to simply be with Jesus and listen.
We must pray to be a Mary in a Martha world (see Luke 10:38-42).
It’s not wrong to want an answer.
It’s just better to wait on Him!
It’s better to let Him lead you and guide you.
In the meantime, delight in and enjoy Him.
Don’t fall for this scheme. Don’t let pressure rob you of your posture. The greatest thing we can do right now is sit at Jesus’ feet — this is why the story of Mary and Martha is so important right now.
A good shepherd knows how to lead his sheep and Jesus is the greatest shepherd that ever was and ever will be.
If He is leading us beside still waters, let us not disturb the waters with fret and worry.
We are led by His voice, not by pressure.
Let us sit and wait upon the Lord. Let us learn to respond to Him and not react to the issues of life.
“The only thing harder than waiting on God is wishing that you had.” — Steven Furtick
- Brian Connolly, Faith Like Birds Ministries