German Version

On Target... Or... Sidetracked?

by Markus Piercy-Reins

We all have a clever enemy who knows about man’s soul. He has studied it since the beginning. He knows what man's favorite "lures" are.
Like an angler he throws his hooks "decorated" with all the lures man can't resist.

Man bites into those “goodies” with fervor. It’s hard to understand that even having snapped the wrong and painful (though delicious and attractive looking stuff), we often bite it again???

Well, we should assume this would end as man enters the kingdom of God and becomes a disciple of Christ but reality proves the opposite.
However, having entered the kingdom of God, important things have changed. We have received God’s Spirit and with His assistance all our remaining “looking for the wrong stuff” is used as constant training on how to overcome the enemy by living a life after the Spirit of God.

God allows our little mistakes here for our spiritual training. Having snapped after some promising food we'll feel the hook. Feeling the pain we will run to our loving Master crying to Him for help.
He won’t turn us down - don't worry! Our salvation doesn't come from our choice of right food:
It's Him having chosen us - before we even had been born!
It's Him promising never losing the ones He has chosen - so our security - even if being "hooked" right now - is not in us but in Him!
His plan will be fulfilled in His proper time and no one and nothing in the whole universe can hinder it manifesting!
If, not being chosen by Him, all our worries and striving and all our desperate attempts and sacrifices wouldn't save us... it is an act of God alone (read John 6:44 / Romans 8:28-31 / Eph. 1:4-6 / Eph. 1:11)
Though we don't perceive this reality with our natural eyes and senses, this is the fact of our salvation!

When I show all the tricky schemes of our adversary I'm not doing it with the intent to paralyze your faith by making you fear his supernatural skill.
No! No! He is a defeated foe... and I'm just writing to dismantle his schemes with the intention of destroying his lies.
You can compare it with military reconnaissance. The better we know our enemy, his equipment, his tactics, the moves he's going to make, the better we're able to succeed in fighting him.
It is the intent of God's Holy Spirit to train and support us here. It is an unavoidable "must" for every disciple of Christ to learn about spiritual warfare.

There is an unshakable fact: For everyone chosen by God even the tricks of the enemy work together for good! Without any exception!!! - (Romans 8:28)

If we got "hooked" on some of his lies we have to suffer temporary consequences (pain) but our God will intervene in His time, will snatch us out of trouble and we'll see afterwards how to avoid the wrong food in future.
We'll learn to know our God better... but not just Him alone - we'll learn about the enemy, too!

So, what I'm going to write about is what I was taught in those lessons... and just know, I first "loved" to eat the promising stuff, too.
My savior got me out of every failure... taught me His truth... and instructed me to spread it worldwide.

For you, this might be just a "theory-lesson" right now but because every believer has to go through the same lessons (just different outward situations and circumstances) the day will come where you will see yourself getting the same teachings!
The situation may be different but the outcome, the result in your spiritual man will be the same!

No, just reading or mentally accepting this won't be sufficient... we all have to live through it. This has to be lived through, suffered through, practically applied… and there are no shortcuts with God!

Changes in our human nature never come from mentally agreeing with God's word. Change is only achieved by going through the dying process of our self in all the grinding outward situations our loving Master is putting us through.
As His love is unshakable fact... so the changes have to become unshakable facts in our lives.
It’s not about feelings… it’s about real changes within which make you able to endure the fiercest storm.

So, the first thing God's Spirit wants me to write about is:
Mixing God's revelations with our human preconceptions

One day being quite puzzled about hearing and discerning God's voice I cried to the Lord:
"Father, there's your voice in my life definitely... but why do many things You told me turn out opposite to my expectations?"

The answer I got is found in God's word. Let's read:
Every word of God is flawless; he is a shield to those who take refuge in him.
Do not add to his words, or he will rebuke you and prove you a liar. - Proverbs 30:5+6 (NIV)

That struck home… I clearly saw the truth!
God had spoken to me... but I added to what He had spoken out of my own perception... how I perceived He meant it!

Let's take an example:

When there is one fact we can be very sure about it is this: GOD IS LOVE!

And believe me there is no better news a man can hear but these precious words: GOD IS LOVE!

We all are on a lifelong hunt for love! Just look to the music charts - what is the theme most sung about?
Love! Love! Love!

We all have a very exact image in us what love is all about:
Love is everything that makes me happy! Everything pleasing me, meeting my wishes and desires I instantly regard as love or loving!

And this even little children know:

When our second son had to get his first haircut ever he didn’t like this procedure at all... and it was my “honor” to do this unthankful job :-)!
So he was placed in his baby chair a large coat was draped around his neck and he was supposed to sit as calmly as possible till this "martyrdom" was over.
Well, I'm quite good at styling hair (even my wife trusts my skills!) but this was a "sweaty" workout... he didn't make it easy for me!
But finally it was done! After we were finished, my wife told him how nice he was looking.
He didn't pay any attention just saying: "Daddy is bad!"
My wife was quite irritated hearing his tone and I have to confess - though I quickly pushed it away mentally - I felt a little sting in my heart, too.
I didn't speak with him, thinking it best to give him time to forget it but I listened to how my wife tried to convince this little guy that his father is so loving toward him.
No way! For about a week his answer always was: Daddy is bad! But then eventually he forgot about it!

Today turning eighteen in August he comes every couple weeks asking me: Dad, I want this and that haircut.... please..................... :-))) !

The same love that cut his hair as a toddler is cutting his hair today... no change at all! Till the end of my life he will be my beloved son!

In the perception of this 18 months old toddler what I had done couldn't be love at all!
This daddy was a cruel slave-master... such a bad monster you can hardly imagine!

Certainly you will smile at this story thinking:
"Oh, yes, I know this, too! But I'm adult now... I'm mature! My perception of love has matured so
I don't think I would do this with God!"

Well, I have to tell you: We all do!

We all have our human perception on what we call love... but we forget that the love of God was sacrificing His only son for us!

Just imagine that you would kill your beloved son in order to save wicked, bad people!!!

God loved Jesus and no one forced Him to slaughter His beloved son; delivering him into the hands of a bloodthirsty, godless band of corrupted traitors… just… to save these very ones that killed Jesus!

Is this how we express our love? Is this fitting a human imagination of love?
Never! This is utter cruelty... in our eyes! Absolutely insane... and I remember quite a reaction when a man first was confronted with this love of God!

This is blowing every dimension of understanding which we call love!

If we love someone or something, we secure it, keep it safe and try to protect it. All our affection and attention turns around the ones we love. Yes, we would rather sacrifice ourselves to save our loved ones… but never would show our love by sacrificing our beloved ones to save wicked, bad people!

Often I think the people easily speaking about God's love have never sat down and visualized what they're actually speaking about!
They just got so used to Good Friday and Easter hearing all the stories again and again. They aren't aware of the enormity that happened at the cross anymore.

We read in the bible: God is love... quickly adopting all our human imaginations and project them on God's love.
We project our way of perceiving love and expect God's love would show up like we think it!

We're off target... absolutely sidetracked!

If God's love was revealed in sacrificing His only begotten son, why should His love for us be different in character?
When God's way of showing love is revealed in allowing His son to be tortured and killed... why do we expect that His love for us would just give us a cozy and comfy life???

(This is just a rhetorical question… a little push to think about God's love a little deeper!)

We so easily speak about God's love! All these big-show-multimillionaire-TV-pastors should do an extensive study on God's love - and the way it is displayed - before preaching their sidetracked version of God's love.

God is still love... pure love... even if choosing to let you suffer for the rest of your life!

This would just show the same "character of love" as He showed with His beloved son!

The disciples counted the sufferings of this earth nothing comparing the eternal glory... and what do we do?

At this point I have to mention the enemy again.

This tricky guy knows about the "perception problem"... He knows about God's character of love... and he knows very well how man thinks and feels about love.

And so he starts his delusion by waving the bible as much as he can! No, no, no, he wouldn't tell you about God's love and how this love is shown... he just would point to all the scriptures speaking about God’s love!
Knowing – watch out here comes the bite - he would appeal to your perception and fantasy to create a wrong expectation of God's love in you!

You will start to believe in a God of love... but totally sidetracked in your expectation!

This the enemy knows and secretly he grins his evil smile.
He knows God wouldn't change His love just to fit our human expectations. He knows this loving God would start to love us His way... no matter how our expectations are!!!

We have found out the love of God differs quite a bit from our way to show and receive love.
When the love of God is touching us this means suffering for our old nature and so we're prone to puzzling experiences, tormenting questions, critical doubts and unbelief!

The enemy now is quickly at hand whispering:
"Is this a God of love? How could this God be love? How could the taking away of things you love so much, be love at all???"

Do you see how dangerous it is to be sidetracked?

How many believers I have counseled just because they were taught wrong concepts about God's love... concepts they quickly swallowed because they so fit their old nature!
How often I tried to revive their faith after their illusions and misconceptions about God laid in shambles!

God isn't man... and His love isn't man's love! As high as the heaven is above the earth His love is above our earthly emotion we call love (mostly our love is just pure selfishness!). - Isaiah 55:8+9

The enemy knows this and starts his seduction right from the beginning.

His hope is to destroy our faith in a loving God when being confronted with God's true love.

His intention is... as always was... to kill the babies in faith! To cripple a believer's faith wouldn't place this believer in hell but would inactivate him for spiritual warfare - and this the enemy hopes to achieve!

He fears disciples knowing about God's true love... not caring for their earthly well-being but just living under the unction of God's Spirit alone!

Why do I write this?

As I said I know it wouldn't keep you from learning it by practice but knowing about "God's way of love".
Knowing about the discrepancy between His and our way of love would help to fend off the fiery arrows of doubt the enemy shoots when God's love is leading you into the next valley of tears.

The enemy so loves to keep truth from us. He loves to keep us sidetracked in wrong expectations... knowing they will cause much trouble in us.
And he doesn't like me to write this, too. He knows that faith is growing from anointed preaching!
Our faith is the source of overcoming this world... so a sidetracked faith will just serve his purposes... hindering the work of God in and through us!

Writing this about love I could show the same problem in human perception with:
joy / wealth / health / gifts of the spirit / church life (fellowship) etc.

The method the enemy uses is always the same:
Bring man to perceive spiritual things by earthly equivalents... and you have won the battle!

The enemy knows about the importance of a spiritual mindset... regarding spiritual things not after earthly perception.
He knows about our weakness in this point, how we're easily impressed by what we see and feel with our senses.

And I write these truths as I was taught by my Master, just to share them with you.
It is my prayer the Lord will activate them in your life according to His plans.

In His Service

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