(The following is a devotional written by one of my dear friends and partners in Psalm 19 Ministries, Diane Hernandez. She writes as the Lord urges her and sends via email to those who request them. This one I thought exceptionally good so asked for her permission to use it here. Her pen name is Lady Di. Enjoy.)
At a conference I recently attended, Mike Cavanaugh, a very well-known speaker, and author smoked up a storm with his message on ‘church fights’. He even suggested we google it and see what pops up. I took a liking to his message, which he titled,
“The Petty Caustic Church.”
As believers, we all know so well how satan hates the brotherhood of the Church. He so despises the Cross, that he feels threatened by us when we accomplish things through the Holy Spirit. He uses every wile and weapon he can dig up from our past to make us bitter and offensive towards each other.
Sin can easily come in like a lion crouching at our doorstep ready to use any one of his powerful tools (pride, envy, and anger) to take us down. When he comes knocking he has no intention of bowing down to the Cross; he begins to weaken our flesh and bend our knees to him.
When brother rises against brother, there is a heavy cost to pay. There is no winner; everyone loses out. The impact is so great that it fulfills satan’s infectious, destroying nature as we take part with him and his plan. I have come to learn that when I bow my spirit with humility, generosity, and longsuffering the door closes to elevating myself. No longer is there a need to have everything centered around me, a wanting of a certain level of respect when others come my way. Pride rises when we have been easily offended, feel entitlement belongs to us, and we are owed something. This weapon of satan is highly infectious and can be compared to leprosy which is filled with pride and highly contagious.
“The Uzziah was angry (through his position granted him privilege), and he had a censer in his hand to burn incense; and while he was angry with the priests, the leprosy broke out on his forehead.” 2 Chronicles 26:19
The moment we think we are owed respect, that is pride, and pride opens us up to infection.
When our worth is measured by what we have achieved it contributes to envy, it becomes pride. It demotes us. We must learn to fight God’s way by being generous, not just with material items but with ourselves in love and kindness. We can kill this vampire, this sin of envy, by stabbing it and driving a stake of unconditional love and kindness through its heart, breaking through with generosity.
When we become angry and fit with rage, we have no awareness of the consequences. This opens the door and brings on demonic attacks, tears walls down and leaves no protection against the storms of life. Being totally out of control, slamming doors, slamming books on tables, harsh words, and pointing the blame open the door to the devil while our patience and longsuffering become diminished.
The fruit of the Spirit is revealed through patience and longsuffering! It takes a gentle heart, with kindness and forgiveness to hold ourselves back while the Lord works things out. We just need to get out of His way. We are comforted by the Word in spirit of any hurts or pain we may feel, His plan is still in tack.
Lord, our eyes are on You. We are being restored, through grace, to a better state of life in the days ahead. So we release our souls to Your will and our ways to Your ways as your faithfulness brings us to Your love and peace. We are united in Christ into one brotherhood. Petty disagreements and disputes must be set aside for the greater good. One body united in Christ Jesus! Our desire is to think beyond the norm that the world presents, helping others become restored to a better way of life in You.