It is Tuesday morning, and as usual the children said good bye with a kiss at the front door as they left for school. I returned to my room to finish packing because I am leaving for America tonight.
In the natural it is just another Tuesday morning. I sat down in the winter morning sun for a few moments before I started scurrying to get everything ready for the next two weeks of traveling. While I sat quietly for a few moments, Holy Spirit spoke to my heart and showed me again that what I experience in the flesh is only a small part of the reality. The race we run is in the spirit, the fight we fight is in the spirit… we receive life in abundance when we live in the spirit. But the keys of the spirit look different from the keys of the flesh, and we will only be able to use them if we walk by faith.
While I was sitting there, soaking up the sunlight with eyes closed, Holy Spirit spoke to me, “Retah, wherever there is darkness in your life, the enemy can get a foothold and a legal right to be there. Every place of hatred, or bitterness, or fear, or willful disobedience are places where he can gain access. Then you are entering his playground. Truth is the light that will drive away darkness. Put on the light.”
The spirit of a man is the lamp of the LORD, searching all the inner depths of his heart (Prov. 20:27).
Immediately I asked the Holy Spirit to let His glory light shine through my being so that every piece darkness can be exposed and swept away. There will be a holy radiance that only comes from Holy Spirit when He rules in someone’s life. That is why we need to daily pray and ask the Lord to seek and test our hearts.
Create in me a clean heart, O God, and renew a steadfast spirit within me (Psalm 51:10).
Peter truly loved the Lord Jesus, but he also had areas of darkness in him that he had to deal with. These areas of darkness became his weakness and eventually ended up in him denying Jesus (see Luke 22:55-62).
Peter was one of the great disciples! He was the water-walker, remember. Everybody lifted him up, and that was when pride could stick its head out. Proverbs 16:18 says, Pride goes before destruction, and a haughty spirit before a fall.
Pride was Satan’s downfall, and also a stumbling block for Peter – and so many out there are in destruction because of this one thing: Pride.
There is nothing so ugly as spiritual pride. I realized it again this week. One afternoon Aldo was praying for a long time, and after watching him for a while, I knelt down next to him, and I heard him say, “Lord, please forgive me for any pride in my life, and protect me from it!” I was quite surprised when I heard this. He lives such a simple life; I mean, he doesn’t even see a lot of people during the day, and with all his physical impairments it is a very difficult, humbling, road he is walking. But still he is fighting the enemy on the “normal” things, just like you and me.
As I was kneeling next to him, I started praying for us, “Yeshua, please have mercy on us – help us not to eat from the world’s table of pride. The road we are walking on with Aldo is so humbling, but I know that Peter also walked a road of humbleness and still stumbled. We want to learn from Peter’s mistakes, and want to stay away from any pride. We repent of pride, Lord! Create in me a clean heart o, Lord. A heart full of meekness and humility.”
I even see sometimes how ministries stand up in pride against one another. Please, God is not looking for ministries; He is looking for humble hearts!
Where do wars and fights come from among you? Do they not come from your desires for pleasure that war in your members? You lust and do not have. You murder and covet and cannot obtain. You fight and war. Yet you do not have because you do not ask. You ask and do not receive, because you ask amiss, that you may spend it on your pleasures. Adulterers and adulteresses! Do you not know that friendship with the world is enmity with God? Whoever therefore wants to be a friend of the world makes himself an enemy of God. Or do you think that the Scripture says in vain, “The Spirit who dwells in us yearns jealously”? But He gives more grace. Therefore He says: “God resists the proud, but gives grace to the humble” (James 4:1-7).
Examine your heart. Walk humbly with your God. Submit to God, resist the Devil and he will flee from you!
This is the process through which the bride of Christ is being cleansed. Don’t become self-ambitious or self-orientated; because God cannot entrust His kingdom to anyone who has not yet died to his own selfish pride. We are disciples of Christ and must wear the armor of light, and pride is the armor of darkness.
We must realize that the greatest defense we have against the Devil is to maintain an honest heart before God. When He shows us an area that needs repentance, we need to obey, and not defend or justify ourselves. Only the blood of the Lamb can truly set us free.
In repentance, humility, and possessing a clean heart, we will find that the enemy cannot get a grip on us. He will have to flee.
When I look at Peter’s story, all I can say is “Lord, help us!” Peter’s victory over pride and the enemy began with the name of Jesus on his lips. Stay in the Word of God. Stay in His presence. I now know that ‘holiness’ it is not something that we can do out of ourselves, but it is Christ in us who is the hope of glory.
Aldo saw me praying next to him, and came to give me a hug. “Mom, the enemy cannot break through a wall of humility.” I immediately knew what he meant.
The power of humility is what builds a spiritual wall of defense around your soul. Satan dines on what we withhold from God, all our secret sins – but when we repent he has to flee. Don’t let self-justification withhold you from freedom. When the enemy comes against you he will try to deceive you, and focus your attention on your own self-righteousness.
Come to a place where you live completely in the light. The light is Yeshua – He is the one that can set you free and make you whole.
After the kids came home from school this afternoon we had a wonderful time around the table, eating lunch and sharing the stories of our day. Aldo jumped up and called Aubrey (the Malawian working for us), “Come quickly Aubrey, we need to go to the gym so I can do some exercise.” So Aldo left for the gym, Ma’am Patrys and Josh started with his homework, and I finished the last of my packing.
Even through all of our trails, and all of our pain, there is still peace. I can go to America, and board that plane knowing that Abba has my family in the palm of His hands. God is smiling over His children that are only walking in obedience and saying to Him, “Here I am – send me.”
I need to finish my next book while I am on this trip, so I am going alone. It is a 32 hour flight to Lake Tahoe – more than enough time to write while no one else can talk to me except Holy Spirit.
Remember to surrender your soul to the Lord every day. Stay humble.
Retah and the family.