Watchman Nee said, "Without some foothold in us, satan cannot operate.  Hence his first tempting of us will be aimed at securing some ground, the next will be an assault from the ground he has secured.  One very large territory, perhaps the largest, that he operates from is fear. Fear is satan's calling card.  Whenever you accept his calling card, you will receive a visit from him."  I don't think it's a question of if, but when is it that we accept his calling cards, be they through fear, worry, anxiety, anger, unforgiveness, lust, and on and on.  I think though, that a case might be made that all of these are rooted in some kind of fear that pervades our lives.  Where might it be pervading ours?
    The "footholds" that Nee speaks of are what the Bible calls "strongholds."  These are territories that the enemy is able to establish in our thinking and the actions that flow out from that thinking.  In this age of reason, and dependence upon manmade solutions and definitions, I don't think we place much emphasis, if any on these. Though the science of psychology has its uses, I think we depend more upon it, much more, than we do upon the power of His Life and Spirit.  Depending on our understanding rather than His sets us up for defeat.  The foothold/stronghold remains established in our lives and as Nee says, he launches attacks against us from that place and places.  Thirty plus years in ministry have convinced me that his greatest foothold, the center of his attacks, do indeed come from the stronghold of fear in our lives.  This is not how it is to be in our lives, but for too many, it is.  Is it so in you?  
    Paul wrote in 2 Corinthians 10:3-5, "We are human, but we don't wage war with human plans and methods.  We use God's mighty weapons, not mere worldly weapons, to knock down the Devil's strongholds.  With these weapons we knock down every proud argument that keeps people from knowing God."  God's powerful weapon is the truth of His Word and Life as revealed in Christ.  A stronghold in our lives is a lie that the enemy has placed there and convinced us to believe is true.  He then operates against us in the power of this lie.  It is a spiritual thing and we cannot defeat it, destroy it, by human reasoning, plan, or method.  Yet like all of the devil's lies, it is powerless in the face of His truth.  His truth will "knock down" the Devil's stronghold, no matter how high or strong, every time.  Are you ready enough, desperate enough, to see them knocked down and destroyed in your life today?
     His Word tells us that "perfect love casts out all fear."  His perfect love brings forth truth into our hearts, minds, and lives.  Fear cannot stand in the presence of that love because it is His presence that crushes it and puts it to flight.  When we are living not some of the time, but all of the time in that love, the Devil is unable to establish a foothold of any kind.  When he sends the calling cards of his lies, we have the power to reject them because we recognize them for what they are, lies.  He has no foothold.  He establishes no stronghold.  This is freedom.  Is this freedom yours?
    You and I will receive his calling card in some form this week.  Will we accept?  Will we believe his lie once more?  Will fear in one of its forms shape us?  Or, in the power of His Life and Truth, will we reject the card, and see that stronghold demolished?   We live in a fallen world, and the enemy has been able to spend years of our lives building these strongholds of lies in our minds and hearts.  Yet in Him, they must and will fall. Are you ready for that?  Are you ready to "tear up" his calling card today?

Blessings,
Pastor O
           
 

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