“We can’t understand God’s narrative without understanding Satan’s strategy.”- Max Lucado
“Count it all joy, my brothers, when you meet trials of various kinds, for you know that the testing of your faith produces steadfastness.”- James 1:2-3
Max Lucado begins Chapter 2 (“You Know Satan’s Next Move”) of More to Your Story by noting that Satan is at the center of God’s story, not absent from or peripheral to it. Furthermore, the more we doubt Satan’s existence, the greater his opportunity to work without hindrance.
Pastor Lucado states we’re all familiar with the phrase “all hell broke loose.” To the contrary, Max underscores, hell does not break loose:
“God uses Satan’s temptation to strengthen us. (If I were the devil, that would aggravate me to no end.) Times of testing are actually times of training, purification, and strength building. . . . God loves you too much to leave you undeveloped and immature.”
Therefore, Pastor Lucado encourages us to know the devil’s strategies and plan our moves accordingly. Most noteworthy, we know Satan:
- attacks weak spots first– Bring your weaknesses to God before Satan brings them to you. Don’t take matters into your own hands and leave God out of the picture.
- raises questions about identity– Satan has us dangling from a broken limb if he convinces us to have faith in our own works over God’s Word. Jesus overcame temptation by remembering and quoting Scripture.
- tempts us to show off in church– There Satan urges you to impress fellow congregants with your service, make visible demonstrations of your faith, and call attention to your good deeds. Rather, boast in God’s abilities.
- promises the heights– Satan covets the throne of heaven, desiring to take God’s place. Satan wants to win you over to his side. However, God refuses to let you go. God gives you His word. Furthermore, you have His help!
Today’s question: How has understanding Satan’s strategies helped you to understand God’s narrative? Please share.
Tomorrow’s blog: “Doodlebugs of this life”