While hiking and fishing in Alaska three years ago with my brother Bruce, the evidence that we were in bear country was everywhere. Signs of partially eaten fish, tracks in the dirt and claw marks on trees were pretty much anywhere you looked. Although I never actually saw a bear on the trip, I have no doubt one saw me through the thick Alaskan woods. One afternoon while walking back across an area we had just been, I looked down to see one of my old footprints I had just left, but this time it was mostly covered with a massive sized paw print from a bear. He was out there watching us somewhere. We couldn’t see him, but the evidence told us he was there and probably watching us. I remember chills running up the back of my spine as my brother and I picked up the pace. We moved pretty fast through those thick woods and made it back to the car fine, but I was certainly nervous about the whole experience.
- I saw glimpses of him yesterday when I was waiting in line at the bank and became impatient with the person in front of me.
- I was reminded just how close he was this past Sunday when I was looking over my sermon notes for that morning and he was planting thoughts in my head, “Look at all the sin in your life. You have no right to be a preacher and stand in front of all these people with this sermon. You’re guilty of everything you’re preaching about. Why are you even a minister!”
- He was there as I was flipping through channels last night, and he placed perfectly on one channel a beautiful woman with very little clothes on. Then he whispered, “No one’s in the room with you, stop and look, it won’t hurt a thing and no one will know.”
You know if you just pay attention to the evidence around you, you’ll see that he’s close by. He’s probably watching you right this very minute, looking for ways in which to make you stumble in your walk with Jesus. You must, watch for him (1 Peter 5:8), resist him (James 4:7) and trust in the Lord’s strength not your own (Proverbs 3:5). Don’t ignore the signs. Don’t under estimate his strength. Whatever you do, DON’T pretend he’s not there, that’s when he’s most dangerous. And the times when you see that he’s really close, it’s okay to pick up the pace and run out of whatever situation you’re in (Genesis 39:12).
Where have you seen him lately?