Sunday, August 19th, 2018
Gotcha! Playing Hard
Stay alert! Watch out for your great enemy, the devil. He prowls around like a roaring lion, looking for someone to devour.
1 Peter 5:8 (NLT)
As I move into a new devotion series, I tossed around suggestions for a lighter one: more uplifting for believers who face tough times. I get it. I enjoy encouraging words, too.
But as a reader and reflector of God's Word, I bring the perspective of a non-believer. On more occasions than I want to consider, I've seen saints ministering mostly to themselves.*
I'm not saying inside healing isn't needed. It is. But understanding outsiders is needed, too. Because Jesus left the ninety-nine for the stray.
Because lost sheep marked for His fold are still out there. Like me, they need to be reached by savvy Christians. Jesus and Paul showed us how to walk common ground.
But it's not in a church-shaped, pew-enhanced bubble, which is uncommon to sheep wandering the world.
The GOTCHA here is a game the devil's winning, and I can't stand idle while Satan keeps smiling. Therefore, this series is the hand God dealt to me. I'm determined to play it face up and open.
## Gotcha! Playing Hard (Part 1)
* For encouragement and Christian edification, I recommend The Word For You Today (TWFYT). It is my favorite daily devotion. Jesus Calling is lovely. Surely, other excellent devotions are out there. That being said, my calling is two-fold:
1) Helping Christians grow up and become the power-house, devil-punching church--that Jesus and the early apostles died to provide. Paul and Peter's letters amply explain our strengths, our dangers--and how to fight them. But their advice seems largely ignored today.
Because mega-churches measure success by their size, medium-sized churches struggle to pay their bills--and neither group wants to risk offending saints, losing donations or exposing wayward leaders.
2) Helping outward-bound Christians understand the mission field and how best to reach the lost.
P.S. To read the other devotions in this series, please see the Gotcha! series.