I have a confession to make. A confession of something I was doing on a regular basis just a short time ago that could have led to absolute disaster. Something so incredibly dangerous, but I couldn’t see the danger in it.
Sometimes we’re doing things and we are oblivious to the danger it could bring. We put ourselves in situations that bring us face to face with a real threat, then we wonder how it happened. How did it happen? Oh sis, didn’t you walk right into this? Didn’t you do some stupid stuff that led directly here? Wasn’t it one little thing after the other, unfolding, bringing you closer and closer to this disaster? But those little things didn’t seem so big in the process.
Okay, I’m not going to fiddle fart around with this anymore, I’m going to tell you about my close encounter with a self-created disaster. As you know, we spend a lot of time in the Florida Keys. One of the houses we often live in is on a beautiful canal in Key Largo. The water is our backyard, and the water temperate is always perfection for the hot sticky weather here.
Our dock is where I often do yoga and take taps in the sunshine. But sometimes the beaming sun becomes so hot reflecting off the cement dock, I seek something a little more comfortable. So, I slip into my kayak for access to the cooling water. Then I grow tired and sleepy, so I tie the kayak to the dock, and I lay down to sunbathe floating on the water. I dangle my hands and feet in the water to cool off. It’s perfection.
Picture me there, tiny kayak, floating in the waters, hands and feet dangling.
This was me doing stupid stuff, step by step, bringing me closer and closer to disaster, but I didn’t see it.
What I didn’t see was the 11 foot crocodile that lives under my dock. I didn’t know something that could literally eat me in one bite was within a few feet of me. But now, I see him. I see him daily because he’s no longer hiding under my dock, he sunbathes all day on my neighbor’s dock. He crawls up in the sunshine, and opens his mouth wide and lays there looking at me as if to say “I should have eaten you when I had the chance.”
My kayak hasn’t touched the water since the crocodile has made his presence known. Now that I see the threat, I avoid the threat. Now that I know the danger, I prevent contact. While I hate to see that monster of a beast in the canal, I would rather see him and know where he is than not see him and be surprised.
What if you could see the dangers in what you are doing? What if you could see the trajectory of these choices and the future of these decisions? What if you became aware of the enemy lurking in the waters, planning his attack?
1 Peter 5:8 “Be sober-minded; be watchful. Your adversary the devil prowls around like a roaring lion, seeking someone to devour.”
But we aren’t sober-minded. We aren’t watchful. We’re just doing what everyone else is doing. We’re stumbling blindly into some dark corners thinking it’s all good. Hey sis, it’s not all good. There’s danger around you. Where is this leading you?
The enemy’s intent is to absolutely devour anyone he can. He wants to eat you alive, tear you apart, shred you to pieces. He wants to ruin every good thing in your life, demolish all your hopes and dreams, steal every ounce of happiness and joy you have, and leave you with nothing but anxiety, fear and depression.
But you don’t see the danger in the little things you’re doing that subject you to his attacks. You don’t see the vulnerable position you put yourself in closer and closer to where he prowls. But sis, there are signs. There are signs that tell you this isn’t a good place to hang out.
The canal next to ours has a sign at the end that says “No Swimming” with an image of an alligator. That yard is known to be a bit eclectic with funky funny things, so I assumed it was just a funny sign. Alligators don’t live in the Florida Keys. This is paradise. Hahaha, so funny. I didn’t take the sign seriously.
Crocodiles don’t play around. They are aggressive and cranky, and I’m just telling you now, he never looks like he’s having a good day. I’m pretty sure his intent is to devour me. And now that I know, I am watchful.
BE WATCHFUL. YOU ADVERSARY IS ON THE PROWL SEEKING SOMEONE TO DEVOUR.
He sits back and watches you get closer and closer to disaster. He sees the unfolding of your decisions and knows the trajectory you’re on. The trajectory that brings you in for his perfectly timed attack.
Sis, wake up! Look around. Is this where you should be? Is this what you should be doing? Is there danger in this water?
The Message Translation of this scripture reads “Stay alert. The Devil is poised to pounce, and would like nothing better than to catch you napping. Keep your guard up.”
Where have you grown lazy? Where are you just letting things happen without concern of where it’s leading you? The Devil is poised to pounce and he is after everything good in your life.
The Holy Spirit dwells within you. This is God’s powerful and mighty spirit that guides and directs you. This Spirit will also give you a holy conviction that says this isn’t right”. LISTEN TO IT. When there are signs, BELIEVE THEM. If the Spirit within you tells you somethings not right with TikTok, then girl, delete it now. If the Spirit within you nudges you about the music you listen to, get yourself a new playlist today. If the Spirit within you gives you a little poke about a relationship you have, start listening sis … there may be danger here. And for heaven’s sake, if the Spirit closes a door, don’t go beating it down!
We’re so good at dismissing the danger of our individual steps until we wake up one day floating with crocodiles. IS THIS GOOD FOR YOU? IS THIS GOD’S BEST FOR YOU? DOES THIS FEEL RIGHT IN YOUR SPIRIT? DO YOU HAVE TO HIDE THIS IN ANY WAY?
I’ve found how the enemy attacks hardest is to create a little divide between me and my Heavenly Daddy. I do a little something stupid that I know I shouldn’t do, so I feel guilt and shame and avoid God. That little something stupid continues, that guilt and shame grows, and that avoidance becomes my habit. Before I know it, I’m living a life I don’t want, showing up as a girl I no longer recognize, without a connection to my Heavenly Daddy and not sure how to get back to the place I once was with Him. And this place right here, this was the devil’s plan all along. This distance was his desire. Here in this darkness, far from the light of God, the enemy can whisper his lies and poke at my wounds and get me to do the exact things I said I would never do.
No more divide. I’m coming back to God. I’m getting back to my connection with him. His arms are always wide open to me, no matter how far I’ve wander or how long I’ve been gone. And they’re open for you too sis! Here in his arms he will show you what to avoid. He will reveal the dangers to you. He will protect you from the attacks of the enemy who is on the prowl. And he will tell you ‘girl, don’t go back there again!’
May your eyes be opened to the dangers around you. May your spirit feel a holy conviction to that which isn’t good for you. May the plans of the enemy be revealed to you, and may you get yourself out of his waters immediately!