Have you ever noticed that the demonic kingdom often shows up to persecute you right after God has used you to bless others? They want to steal your joy. I was given fresh insight to this demonic agenda several years ago at a womens retreat that I was privileged to organize.
We had planned a “Spa Day” to treat the ladies in our church and had make-up artists, massage therapists, and even a Christian comedian came. We set up stations for manicures and pedicures where the ladies were pampered and at the end of the day we had many relaxed women and one new soul saved for the Kingdom!
I returned home that night joyfully exhausted only to be greeted by two teenagers and an upset husband that were waiting for me at the door. (Ever notice how the enemy often uses those that are closest to you to bring the attack?) This happened several years ago and I cannot remember the specifics of why they were so upset, but the target was me, and I was soon in tears and needing help!
Demon Spirits Seek To Kill, Steal and Destroy
I telephoned a good friend and she simply said, “Oh, Phyllis, I am so sorry! I should have warned you. When you do something like that for God, you need to understand that the enemy is not pleased with you. Don’t be discouraged, that is your sign that you really took some ground for God today!” (This friend was not only a great encourager but she had been the leader of this women’s group for many years and had organized similar events).
I never forgot that conversation because it helped me to gain a new perspective. I went from self-pity to joy in only a minute because of the revelation I received. The demonic kingdom had wanted me to think that every time I blessed someone, something bad would surely happen. That view ensures defeat and allows the enemy to devour your destiny seed.
When you realize that Gods perspective is completely the opposite from the lies of the enemy (He wants to bless and prosper you (Jer 29:11)), you can begin to rise above the persecution. I had stored some riches in heavenly places that summer day on the beach, and the enemy wanted to steal it all right back.
A notable example of this in Scripture is in John 5. Right after Jesus healed the man who was sick for thirty eight years, the Jewish leaders attacked the man for carrying his mat on Sabbath. Then they began persecuting Jesus for working on the Sabbath! Clearly the enemy did not like this display of miracles! Jesus was unmoved by their attempts to condemn him and we must be too.
We need God’s perspective to see the demonic realm’s tactics in advance. Certainly Paul must have understood this, or how could he lay on the floor of a Roman prison telling us to have Joy in the trials? I have learned a few lessons since that day on the beach and try to apply them myself:
- After a spiritual victory, be prepared for potential demonic retaliation.
- If the retaliation comes from a person, warfare by binding up spirits of retaliation or vengeance (Matt 16:19).
- Respond in love to that person, so the harassing spirits get frustrated and leave empty handed (Rom. 12:21).
- Ask God for his perspective, and do not lean on your understanding.
Does this help you find joy in a trial? Do you have a similar story that you can share with us to encourage our readers? We would love to hear from you.