As I formulated this post in my head, I kept thinking about the themes of Satan’s presence in this world and all of the things that were distracting me this past weekend.
I thought, isn’t there a phrase, “The Devil is in the distractions”? When I googled it, I discovered the phrase was, “The Devil is in the details.”
I guess I just came up with a new phrase…one that I wish would rather not exist.
This past weekend brought to the forefront of my mind, a few examples of a broken world and many distractions that kept me from focusing on God.
- On Friday I learned of a tragic situation, where a youth leader had killed his wife, step-daughter and her boyfriend on Thanksgiving. I did not know anyone involved, but I knew of the pastor of the congregation and his wife. My heart ached at the grief that must have stricken that faith community. It was overwhelming to think of how that pastor would have to lead those people through a lot of unanswered questions and the unimaginable loss of life. Not only that, but the man who committed these crimes would need to be cared for, too.
It was one of those times where I didn’t have the words to lift it up in prayer. But I was thankful to share the request with many prayer warriors, who could with word or without, share the burden and privilege of praying for peace.
- Sunday morning as I awoke, it was one of those mornings where I really didn’t want to go to work at a church. As a ministry professional even we have those moments where we don’t want to go because Satan pokes at us and we are sinful human beings.
I read a short devotional sitting near my bed, and that kept me moving forward to get ready and out of the house.
- I had prepared to teach Sunday school on Wednesday, but then it was a short work week with an added holiday. When I went to lead on Sunday morning I found myself not as prepared as I would have liked to be.
I know that God uses us, even when we are ill-prepared, but I was also thankful for the grace of the participants and fellow leader.
- I attended worship and by the end, I had written notes about work all over the front & back of my bulletin.
When I finally sit for worship, lots of thoughts about conversations and tasks flood into my mind and I have to write them down, lest I forget. This distracts me from the purpose of worshipping God, thanking him for his love and mercy, and being a part of the community of faith in song, Scripture and prayer.
I am thankful that God forgives me when I am not wholeheartedly focused on him. Being in that space, broken and distracted was exactly where I needed to be as I realized my need for a Savior.
As I pondered all of this, it was very clear that Satan was at work in me and in the world. Thankfully I know that he won’t win. In fact, Christ has already won the victory over sin, death and the devil through his death on the cross. Satan will poke at us, but he will never win.
God wins. Love wins. God is with us in the distractions and that makes all the difference.