Summary: Life is an ever changing mix of good times and bad ones. This series is aimed at helping us keep our eyes on God through it all.
What to Do When¡K part 4 ¡§When you are attacked¡¨
Story ¡V I can remember being a little kid and going to my Grandma¡¦s house in Jacksonville. I always liked it because we would go down to the boardwalk and hang out, but before we did that we would stop by Macy¡¦s which had a bakery and get warm fresh doughnuts. They were the best!!! So one day I had just got my doughnut out to eat when I was attacked by this swarm of these ugly white ducks¡K then by the time that was over the bakery was out of doughnuts and I cried. I share that because it was the first memory I have of the feeling of being attacked.
Tonight we are going to be looking at what to when we are attacked¡K but before we begin lets look back over where we have been these past 3 weeks. The goal of this series was to get ours eyes off ourselves, and focus more on God. Life throws all kind of things at us and it is easy to forget about God in all this¡K That is why we need to know what to do when these situations come up. The first part of our series was on what to do when we are confused and we said that we should: Stop and recognize that God is good and he will not leave us confused, Seek God in your situation , and Submit your desires to Gods, and place your full trust in him. The second part of the series we looked at what to do when things go wrong. We should: Thank God for our current circumstances, Think about your life and see if God is trying to get your attention about something, Take your circumstances as a chance to grow, don¡¦t fight them, and Trust that God will protect you and deliver you. Finally, last week we looked at what to do when things go right. We said: Rejoice in the fact that God has given you a blessing, Rest and be restored by God, and Reach Out to others who are going through tough times. So that brings us to tonight and what to do when we are attacked. That might be a little bit of a vague topic for you so maybe I can help clarify what I mean by ¡§under attack.¡¨ The Bible makes it clear that satan is a very real force in the world today just looking to disrupt and destroy peoples lives.
1 Peter 5:8 ¡§Discipline yourselves, keep alert. Like a roaring lion your adversary the devil prowls around, looking for someone to devour.¡¨ NRSV
He is always on the prowl like a lion as this verse says just looking for any chance he can to get you to take your focus off of God. Have you ever had a time when you just felt like things were coming at you from every direction? It could be your life is getting way to busy and you have so many demands on your time, then something goes wrong at home, or you find out some other bad news and you are left asking the question ¡§how much more can I take???¡¨ More times than not, these are the devils little schemes to try to get you feeling so bogged down, and feeling under attack that you lose your focus on God.
This is what I want to address tonight, what to do when we are attacked¡K Back in that verse we read in 1 Peter it says to discipline yourself and to keep alert, but how do we do that? There is a story about a man named Jeremiah that I think would be of some value to us, and there are plenty of New Testament passages that deal with this subject. From these we can say that we need to do three things when we are under attack:
Before we begin our first thing to do when we are attacked, I want to tell you that story about the man named Jeremiah. Jeremiah was an Old Testament prophet. Basically he was a spokesman for God to the people, In this case he was speaking to the people in the southern kingdom of Israel called Judah. The people have become very wicked under the leadership of a bad king and God has decided to punish the people by having another country come in and take all the people away for a while. God tells Jeremiah this and he begins to warn the people that the Babylonians are coming and they are going to take us away!!! As you can imagine the people did not respond to well to this message¡K It would be like me going up to New York City and telling them that the terrorist were coming to take them all away as a punishment from God. In fact the people persecuted and attack Jeremiah, even the priest in the temple had him put in the stocks!!! You can imagine that by this point Jeremiah was feeling under attack¡K Here he is trying to do the will of God and all he gets is more and more grief. It would have been very easy for Jeremiah to take his focus off of God and begin to get bogged down in all his problems,