Shake It Off

Shake It Off

Shake It Off

3C

Romans 8:11 "But if the Spirit of Him who raised Jesus from the dead dwells in you, He who raised Christ from the dead will also give life to your mortal bodies through His Spirit who dwells in you." (NKJV)

God wants us to live victorious lives.  He desires for us to live at our full potential and has given us His Spirit to be with us and dwell in us, but sometimes we forget that we have the power of heaven on our side, and we live mediocre lives convinced that we are unable to be or do more for our God.

Our enemy is fully aware of our humanity. As much as God desires our victorious living, Satan desires our destruction. He constantly attacks us, especially in our thinking, to derail us from the dream of God for our lives. He introduces questions, contradictions and promises of something more or better than what God has given us that often causes us to doubt and become suspicious of who God is, who we are in Him and of the promises we have received from our Father. The bombardment of our minds with these arrows from the evil one leaves many people in a state of cognitive dissonance.

“Cognitive dissonance is the mental stress or discomfort experienced by an individual who holds two or more contradictory beliefs, ideas, or values at the same time, performs an action that is contradictory to one or more beliefs, ideas or values, or is confronted by new information that conflicts with existing beliefs, ideas, or values”

- Wikipedia.

In the very beginning we see how Satan attacked Eve with this very strategy. He came to her questioning the instruction of God not to eat from the tree of knowledge of good and evil, placing suspicion on the goodness of God; contradicts what God said would happen to her if she ate by telling her that she would not die and lastly promises her that she would be like God if she would eat of the fruit of the tree.

We see that Eve changed her perspective – she looked at the tree differently – now it seemed good to her for food. She was in a state of dissonance. She knew what God had said, but the questions, contradictions and promises of the Devil caused her to shift her beliefs and this led to her eating from the tree. 

It is amazing to see how easily we are dissuaded from what God has said when we open our minds and hearts to a contrary voice. The true tragedy in this moment is that she was already like God. She was created in His image and likeness and nothing could be added to her. But she did not believe that. She was convinced by the cunning lies of the enemy that there was something more to be had. Today we know that we are His workmanship, created in His image and likeness, we believers are like Him and that nothing in this world can add to us. We are complete in Him. Unless we believe this with all of our hearts, we too will be enticed by the offerings of the world and these selfish desires will lead us astray. The challenge before us is to stand firm in our beliefs, to not allow any contrary opinion to influence us, to literally shake off the thoughts of the enemy and walk in the fullness of God’s plan and purpose for our lives.

Acts 28:1–5 (AMP) “After we were safe on the island, we knew and recognized that it was called Malta. And the natives showed us unusual and remarkable kindness, for they kindled a fire and welcomed and received us all, since it had begun to rain and was cold. Now Paul had gathered a bundle of sticks, and he was laying them on the fire when a viper crawled out because of the heat and fastened itself on his hand. When the natives saw the little animal hanging from his hand, they said to one another, Doubtless this man is a murderer, for though he has been saved from the sea, Justice [the goddess of avenging] has not permitted that he should live. Then [Paul simply] shook off the small creature into the fire and suffered no evil effects.”

 

Through the Cross of Christ we have been given the same power that Jesus has and we are able to do all things through His resurrection power.  Paul demonstrated for us how to not fall into the traps of the enemy but to shake off thoughts contrary to our divine assignment and continue in purpose to the glory of God. He did not fear, he did not falter in his faith in God, but instead he inspired everybody around him to hold firm in God. He saw them all safe on the shores of the island. 

Paul simply shook of the snake. The venom that should have killed him had no effect on him because his faith was in God’s promise over his life. May God help us to believe like this; fixed in faith may we shake off every contrary thought and continue to walk in all He has planned and purposed for our lives to His glory. 

 

 

 

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