By Marni Montanez
1 Peter 5:8
New International Version (NIV)
8. Be alert and of sober mind. Your enemy the devil prowls around like a roaring lion looking for someone to devour.
Last week I wrote about my favorite quote "Evil thrives when good people do nothing".
It was on my heart to awaken Christians from their slumber.
I received an email from a friend regarding that quote. She shared that there are times because of illness or other issues it isn’t so easy for people to take action. My friend said it could be the enemy’s strategy against those who are willing but unable. I couldn’t agree with her more.
I also have stood in that position of being unable to do something.
There were times of depression where I would sit in my recliner almost comatose for hours staring out the window with tears falling down my face. I experienced times of illness that incapacitated me. No words just silent hopelessness. My will had been broken and there was nowhere for me to go but to my Creator. In these moments I was forced to rest and heal I realized how weak I really am. Some time ago I wrote about leaning into God because we are unable. Exactly like my friend said, this didn’t mean I didn’t care or was lazy it simply meant that I was unable to do anything. So I would pray and that’s all I could do, and when I couldn’t pray I would raise my eyes up to heaven and pray with tears. And yes, there were times I gave up completely. We get exhausted. Demons are relentless and need no rest like we as weak humans do. When Moses was leader of Israel he was constantly under fire. But he constantly went to the Lord for strength, wisdom and guidance. That is the only way he could survive and lead. I’m sure there were mornings he didn’t want to get out of bed thinking about what he would have to face that day. In the beginning of this verse “Be alert and of sober mind”, the tone suggests there is almost a warning. It would be wise to pay heed to this warning.
What does it mean to be alert and sober minded? Definition of alert (adj)
Definition of sober (adj)
We are told to be alert and sober minded. Our mind is the battlefield and it is the place the enemy consistently attacks. If he can cloud our minds with fear, depression, doubt etc. Then little by little he will take over our ability to fight. Most of us go through difficult times and some of us go through these times longer than others. In our moments of greatest struggle we need to reach out to others to pray for us. Sometimes all we need is a safe boat to rest on to recuperate for a time. We need each other and I guarantee you; lone rangers are easy prey for the enemy.
The next line is “your enemy prowls around like a roaring lion”. Yes, he is our enemy. What does an enemy do? He attacks and when we stand or fight to take back ground he has illegal stolen, he counterattacks. He prowls around and in some interpretations it says “roams around”. There seems to be aimlessness to his prowling. He is not strategically sound as many think. He uses the same lies to get us off track. You know those times you feel like why is this happening to me? Those are the times you got in his line of fire by provoking the enemy with your powerful and sincere prayers. We don’t necessarily have to pray against the enemy to attack his kingdom. Praying for something like healing or prosperity and things against his will shake the kingdom of darkness and cause the enemy to take notice of us.
There is a song by Twila Paris called the warrior is a child. To me this is the perfect song that depicts what a Kingdom warrior really feels.
The purpose of this series is to encourage people to live as loving, compassionate, and peacemaking children of God: Jesus tells us to pray, "Thy kingdom come, thy will be done, on earth as it is in heaven." (Matthew 6:10) God tells us through Micah (6:8), "He has told you, O man, what is good; And what does the Lord require of you But to do justice, to love kindness, And to walk humbly with your God." And we know from Revelation 21:4 that there will be no more mourning, or crying, or pain, or death. Thus, Christian living requires us to set the standards of these conditions here on earth for our fellow human beings, and for the other animals, as a witness to the rest of the world. To do otherwise is not Christian.