Stay Focused

“Then Jesus said to those Jews who believed Him, "If you abide in My word, you are My disciples indeed. And you shall know the truth, and the truth shall make you free."

John 8:31-32  

Reading C.S. Lewis “The Screwtape Letters” this morning something Lewis wrote just stuck with me with regard to how often we say things to one another like, “the devil is attacking me by filling my mind with impure thoughts.” If you didn’t know already, “The Screwtape Letters” is comprised of 31 letters from a senior demon named Screwtape and his nephew, Wormwood, who is a younger and less experienced demon who is charged with guiding a man called, “the patient” toward “Our Father Below”, none other than the Devil himself. Wormwood writes to his nephew, “It is funny how mortals always picture us as putting things into their minds: in reality our best work is done by keeping things out.” Have you ever thought the Devil is not so much concerned about filling your mind with lies as he is in distracting you so that you don’t fill your mind with God’s truth?

It’s been well said that the enemy of our souls favorite word is, “tomorrow” for if he succeeds in getting you and me to put off what we should be doing today until tomorrow, the devil knows eventually we will run out of todays. Have you ever said, “tomorrow I will start reading my bible”, or “tomorrow I will spend time alone with God in prayer?” One of the best ways the devil wins in each of our lives is to distract us from God, knowing his best work is done by keeping things out of our minds, and what could be better to keep out of our minds is the very Word of God. The devil doesn’t mind what occupies our thoughts, it can be pleasure or pain that does the trick, anything that keeps you and me from growing in the knowledge of Christ and from knowing the truth that sets us free is just fine.

Let’s not forget that the devils ultimate goal in all our lives is to keep us from God, period. The devil will use every means possible to keep us from prayer and from the study of His Word, from knowing Jesus as our personal Savior and Lord. The devil will do anything to keep us out of fellowship with those whom the Lord loves and whose lives are a reflection of His and who stir us up to love and good works. Remember, “For whatever is born of God overcomes the world. And this is the victory that has overcome the world--our faith” (1 John 5:4) and the devil is fully aware of that. Consider the psalmist words, “You will show me the path of life; In Your presence is fullness of joy; At Your right hand are pleasures forevermore” (Psalm 16:11). The presence of God is where we find pleasures forevermore and the devil knows it and that is why he works so hard to keep us from the very place we all so desperately are seeking to find. The psalmist knew from first hand experience, “Better is one day in Your courts than a thousand elsewhere.” It’s no wonder Jesus said…

"But seek first the kingdom of God and His righteousness, and all these things shall be added to you.”

Matthew 6:33


Michael Osthimer





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