authority, deception, discerning the spirits, entering his rest, experience, following Jesus, freedom, knowledge, Lily, peace, prayer, Resisting the Devil, rest, Satan, Submission to God, T.A. Sparks, Taking our Thoughts Captive, the angel of light, the devil, the enemy, The Holy Spirit, the Kingdom of God, the mind of Christ, the presence of God, the whole armour of God, thought life, walking by the spirit
It was only today as I have started to see more clearly how Satan keeps our minds busy and worried all day long. Not that I had not heard about it before, however, the theory once learned has come alive now, so to say. What I am referring to is the simple pattern Satan always uses to pull us down on his level as soon as we have begun to relax in the presence of God. You know this pattern that starts telling us to distrust God by asking, “Hath God really said?”
I think there is none of us who would not like to permanently rest in the kingdom of God by enjoying (His) righteousness, (His) peace and (His) joy in the Holy Spirit as Romans chapter 14, verse 17 tells us. Our enemy knows that we are untouchable regarding such a heavenly state of mind as long as we trust in God more than in anyone else. It has become obvious to me that we will always be enabled to enjoy God’s presence when we have obeyed Him and thus walk in the spirit, regardless of how seemingly unreasonable and sometimes even unkind our behavior founded on His leading might be seen by others (or even by ourselves). But outside of Christ we will never have any chance to walk by the Spirit, ever!
After some days with several spiritual battles I had asked the Lord lately about how I could ever escape from the tendency to submit to any other spirit than His when I do not clearly see where the danger lies or comes from. Indeed, recently I found myself often trapped by my own heart that let something out (that is, a confession, an evaluation, or an idea) at a time and confronted with a person whom I should not have trusted at all. I knew that our mouth could only speak what had been in our heart all along and I also knew that I could not set myself free from my old habits of the soul, either. So I struggled for a few days, not knowing how to get out of there.
To my own surprise, this morning I awoke wrapped up in God’s peace, feeling like a little child just before Christmas Eve. 😉 I recalled that this process had begun yesterday in the evening as the Lord after a time of prayer had set me free from something of which I had not even known. Concerning this matter, please, compare the first and last picture I posted on here. There you might detect a kite dragon that got caught up in a power line between a walkway and a bikeway. I took these photographs on June 9th this year as I was on a biking tour. Somehow these pictures told me something about the devil being trapped. I felt I could write a blog post about it and therefore I started writing on that very day five months ago. Yet I only posted these two pictures and the following quote by T. Austin Sparks.
This is the basis of victory over the Devil. There is no defeating Satan save on this ground of walking by the Spirit, of being governed by Him.
Afterwards all inspiration seemed gone and this post was somehow snoozing as a “draft” on WordPress with no title attached to it yet. It was only four weeks later when I was done with my weekly big shopping that I suddenly detected a child’s drawing in a shopping cart that was connected to other shopping carts. As you can see in the smaller picture on the left, this child wanted to picture the devil. Looking at this drawing, I sensed God telling me at that very moment that Satan was no longer caught ‘in the air’ like that kite dragon had been, but closer to the ground now, closer to being controlled by me, so to speak. As I had already left that spot, just in the act of leaving the parking lot by car, God told me to go back and to take this very picture.
I cannot say how and why, yet I felt I needed a third confirmation from God as to His promise to give me the power over the enemy in the days ahead. So I prayed and waited for a few weeks until something strange happened. One evening as I was sitting in our living room on the couch and prayed, I suddenly opened my eyes and wondered where this disgusting stench might have come from. The air was filled with stink and I felt there was danger, too. Praying about what to do, I followed where my nose led me and finally found ‘something’ that was jammed behind the couch and the wall. Oh no, this strange ‘something’ had just begun to burn out! If you look at the smaller photograph on the right with our late Lily looking at IT, you will discern a serpent-like light hose (even in red) that breathed its last on that very day. God revealed to me that this light hose represented a false source of light, coming from the angel of light. On the whole, it seems the enemy had tried to “kill” me through any means possible, at first physically and mentally through Covid-19 and its various persistent long-term effects, then through a possible burning couch on that day, and all the time spiritually by trying to submit me to several types of evil spirits, attacking me through all kinds of persons (family, friends, neighbors, internet etc.).
So, after a lot of background information, I am going to tell you briefly (I hope) 😉 about how God set me free today.
Example # 1
The first case happened when someone called on the phone. Although I was not the one who talked with them, I heard a few scraps of that conversation. There was one particular statement on the other side of the phone that was a hidden offense, most probably directed toward me. My first (normal) reaction would have been to get mad and if not addressing it personally, I would have pondered on such an insolence forever and a day. Not so today…
As soon as I wanted to start thinking about it, I heard the Lord telling me, “No, don’t do it.” Jesus explained to me that listening to the devil’s insinuations (which are so familiar to our souls), to his pros and cons on any matter was equivalent to eating of the tree of the knowledge of good and evil. Even though my evaluation might have been right, by doing so I would have entered the enemy’s realm and thus I would have ‘fallen down’ from the spiritual realm where I had been one spirit with only Jesus Christ before. At first I was a bit surprised, but I saw immediately that God had enabled me to really refrain from mulling over that offensive statement. Wow! That was truly a miracle from God! 🙂
On the one hand, I found myself wrapped in His peace and joy afterwards and on the other, I also felt a quiet and restful authority inside me, not all those agitated emotions like anger, wrath, or anxiety for having been insulted, those feelings I had been used to before. Christ also told me to avoid listening to any kind of negative, destructive, or worldly input unless He gave me the permission to do so. Then I would be under His protection, shielded by the whole armor of God, so to say.
EXAMPLE # 2
Still musing on our Lord’s precious advice, there was a second phone call. This time I was the one who talked, or rather listened, and there seemed to be no problems at first. But then I felt a subtle ‘nudge’ from God to be more alert.
Someone on the other side of the phone thought they had to share some important information by reading the latest news to me. As I started to listen, I realized that it was all about a recent criminal case, even a violent and brutal one. I felt I wanted to close my ears somehow which did not work. Therefore I (impolitely) interrupted the reader and said, “It is neither good for you nor for me to listen to all this negativity that is going to pull us down emotionally.” Someone agreed with me, but the reading did not stop. Soon I could not take this painful attack by that evil spirit any more and thus I firmly exclaimed, “I do not want to hear this any longer!!”
However, this interjection did not help much, either, and so I said I would finally hang up. Indeed, shortly afterwards I really hung up quickly after saying goodbye. Well, that was anything but normal for me as I usually let people converse about what they want and how long they want until they say goodbye or I collapse with fatigue. 😉 What was amazing to me, again, was this wonderful peace and joy although, on a mere human level, it was not that polite what I had done. Yet I simply followed the Lord’s leading, His Holy Spirit, and not the spirit of any man. Who would have ever thought that God would lead us in such perplexing ways? Most certainly not me!
EXAMPLE # 3
A few hours later I found myself in a situation where I could not simply bow out without difficulties. During another talk, though this time not on the phone, once again I was confronted with some bad and frightening news I felt I would not come to know at all. But I could neither run away nor hang up here and thus I got a bit nervous at first. Yet the Lord told me to flee to Him in the Spirit in such and similar situations when I cannot avoid hearing what I do not want to hear. Actually, that worked immediately, too. However, Jesus also instructed me to never weigh in on such bad news unless He gave me the permission to do so. So I remained quietly – in Him – and enjoyed His peace.
Following the wind of the Spirit of Life is truly an adventure. It appears to me, the closer we get to His Light and Life, the narrower the path becomes. But although less things appear to be ‘allowed’ in the realm of the soul, the spiritual blessings that follow our obedience are worth it all. As peculiar as it might seem, a confirmation of these three aforementioned experiences with God had happened before, too.
It was about a week ago that I was on a walk with my husband Paul along the Europe Channel. On our way back to our car I got aware of a traffic sign that stood there a few hundred meters in front of the locks. From looking at the narrowing down of the Channel the closer it got to the locks, we thought it might mean to somehow stop there for some reason. I felt nudged to take a picture of this sign, not knowing at that moment why I felt led to do so.
Today after my latest experiences with God, He made me aware of this sign again and therefore I looked it up. In fact, I was really amazed to see how it fits my latest lessons taught by God! As I only found a German description of the meaning of this sign, I decided to paraphrase it in my own words: It is a mandatory waterway sign for inland river navigation which tells the shipmaster or captain of a cargo ship or a cruiser to stop under certain circumstances. We can easily imagine what might happen if there is some oncoming traffic and the breadth of the channel is too narrow for two ships passing by each other. I remember that I had seen a big cruiser some time ago that had been waiting there until the way was clear again. So, what does this sign above have to do with exposing the enemy and even exorcizing authority over him in Christ? 🙄
Jesus told us that, “No one can serve two masters, for either he will hate the one and love the other, or he will be devoted to the one and despise the other. You cannot serve God and money.” (Mt 6:24 ESV)
At first sight it does not seem as if my experiences had to do with ‘money’. In these three cases I solely had to decide whether I wanted to submit to God or to any other spirit than His. But I dare say that money here in this Scripture might also represent the spirit of this world, that is, any other spirit that comes to us from another, a hostile direction, a spirit that is hell-bent on leading us into another kingdom than the Kingdom of God. Isn’t it true that we cannot simultaneously love God and others when we have submitted to other persons by doing their bidding that has originated from this fallen world which is the enemy’s kingdom? However, if we love God by keeping His commandments (cf. Jn 14:15), we will love others, too, although not by submitting to them, unless it has been the Holy Spirit who has led them and has spoken through them as well (see Eph 5:21).
All images © Susanne Schuberth 2021