When we first bought our house, we inherited a large wooden deck. Naturally it needed regular maintenance, but it seemed that our efforts to stain it and replace its decrepit boards made no difference, for it continued to fall apart. In fact, last fall my wife almost succeeded in putting her foot through one of the boards!
“Honey, I lost my foot!”
“Don’t worry! You still have one left!”
We knew then that drastic measures would have to be taken, and those who specialize in the trade came to our rescue. Unfortunately there was a hefty price tag attached to their services, one that increased 6 fold before it was all said and done, and we’re still waiting for them to stain and seal the new surface!
Our touch-ups, our puny efforts to replace worm-filled, rotting boards, or to stain them with water soluble products, really made no difference at all. In fact, all it really did was to provide us with a temporary hurrah, followed by a quick “Oh! Not again!”
As we would sadly discover (as the price doubled almost daily), our problem lie in the fact that the original deck had not been built on a proper foundation. Concrete had not been used on its supporting beams, and the deck had never been properly attached to the house. In addition, nails had been used instead of screws, which would have given it more stability. As a result of the poor construction, the deck shifted and its supporting posts began disappearing into the ground. (Was the ground that hungry? Luckily it didn’t see my wife’s foot!)
We were literally experiencing what the man building his house on sand eventually faced (Mat 7:26, 27), the deck was literally falling down!
It is even more important to have a firm foundation in our faith life than it is to have one under out deck. Without it we will be experiencing defeat after defeat.
“The fundamental fact of existence is that this trust in God, this faith, is the firm foundation under everything that makes life worth living. It’s our handle on what we can’t see.” (Heb 11:1-2 The Message)
If we face defeat repeatedly, it is time that we get to the root of the problem. Otherwise we will be planning temporary hurrahs, followed quickly by “Oh not again!”s!
Most of our problems have often, unawaringly, been caused in our pasts. The evil one revels in our vulnerabilities and will take advantage of any accident, hurt, rejection, difficult situation, abuse, or any unforgiveness that we encounter, and will turn it into a snare.
In turn, these weaken our foundation to the point that we begin perceiving the world through eyes of defeat. Our faith begins to waiver, and we begin living a life of disillusionment.
But it doesn’t have to be that way!
Through God’s help and the assistance of God-fearing men and women, we can find the source of our addictions. We can allow God to heal us.
Too many of us are too blinded to do so however, and we end up in utter despair, not realizing that healing is at our grasp: “Their eyes are blinded, their hearts are hardened, So that they wouldn’t see with their eyes and perceive with their hearts, And turn to me, God, so I could heal them.” (John 12:40 The Message)
God does keep His word! Let’s submit ourselves to God. He knows our situation! He knows the root of our problems! It is time we do something about our mediocre lives! Why not put our trust in the One who can save us? Let’s follow His promptings that lead us to healing: “Submit yourselves, then, to God. Resist the devil, and he will flee from you.” (James 4:7 NIV)
We also need to resist the evil one, for he will not give up easily. He will try everything to confuse the issue with his numerous lies.
Don’t listen to him! Instead let’s put our full trust in God! Only then will we see the evil one “flee” from us! Only then will we be filled with such inner peace that nothing will ever faze us!
“Don’t be gullible in regard to smooth-talking evil. Stay alert like this, and before you know it the God of peace will come down on Satan with both feet, stomping him into the dirt. Enjoy the best of Jesus!” (Rom 16:19-20 The Message)
“Peace I leave with you; my peace I give you. I do not give to you as the world gives. Do not let your hearts be troubled and do not be afraid.” (John 14:27 NIV)
Oh, I still need go out and find my wife’s foot! I can be so scatter-brained sometimes! It must be buried under the debris of the old deck … Can someone come out and help me?
(To access the entire “Fearless Victory!” devotional series, please click here.)