While reading, "Great Day Every Day", by Max Lucado, I came across something so profound to me that I am still pondering the thoughts.
"Do you let anyone who knocks on your door enter your house? Don't let every thought that surfaces dwell in your mind. Take it captive..make it obey Jesus. If it refuses, don't think it. Negative thoughts never strengthen you. How many times have you cleared a traffic jam with your grumbles? Does groaning about bills make them disappear? Why moan about your aches and pains, problems and tasks? "Be careful what you think, because your thoughts run your life."
Isn't that good? We tend to allow all sorts of strangers into our world. Stangers that we should be telling, "Your not welcome here. Just keep on moving", but we don't always. We let them in and blindly entertain them, only to find ourselves in danger.
A few days ago my mother allowed a stranger into her home. He spent three hours sitting at her kitchen table with her and left with a personal check. This man said he was an insurance salesman. My mom has been asking questions about insurance and I am sure when this man showed up at her door she thought it was a good thing, after all, she had been thinking about purchasing insurance.
She sat with this fraud as he played her and walked away with a smirk. After a while my mom thought about it and decided she was going to cancel. When she tried to phone the man, well as you can imagine, nothing. She didn't even have a business card.
Everything is okay today. My mom has gone to the bank, made phone calls and made a report. But just imagine what could have happened. My mom trusted this stranger that was out to do harm to her. His disguise fooled her. How often is Satan trying to fool us? Sabotage all we are doing? Daily. Moment by moment he there in wait for the right opportunity for us to allow a stranger into our world.
When I was a young child we lived in the country of Missouri. Even farther out in the country than I am today. I remember this day just like it was yesterday. My dad had left for work and mom was in the kitchen like always. I was up bopping around and the doorbell rang. I ran to the door thinking it was my dad coming back for something forgotten. My mom beat me to the door by inches just as I was ready to pull on the handle and open the door. My mom stops and looks out the peep hole, only to see two strange men at the door. They knew we were there. They could hear my giggle. Mom says, "Can I help you with something?" The men looked frightening as my mom remembers that day. One replies, "Our car broke down and we just need to use your phone". Well, my mom didn't allow these men in our home this day. Come to find out after talking to neighbors, they didn't go to anyone else's home and there was no car broke down near us. Were these men up to no good? It is a great possibility. Praise God my mom got to that door before me. I would have just opened the door up with a huge smile thinking all was safe.
Friends, it can be our front door into our home that danger awaits or it can be our minds and hearts where thoughts and actions are lying in wait to captivate our attention that will only lead to harm. When we allow junk in, junk is going to come out. Entertaining one dangerous thought can be destructive to not only our life, but the life of those around us. Those dangerous thoguhts can be anthing from music to movies to afternoon treat. It can be that drink you feel you need after a hard days work or that extra pill that will help you sleep. It can be the gossip waiting to roll off your tongue or the anger and resentment putting up a fence around your heart. When we allow dangerous thoughts to swirl about our minds it leads to dangerous actions.
"Watch over your heart with all diligence, for from it flow the springs of life." Proverbs 4:23
"The thief comes only to steal and kill and destroy, I came that they may have life and have it abundantly." John 10:4
We must guard our hearts. What we allow into our lives can be disguised and devastating. We must be on watch at all times and make sure our focus is on good things. Evil has a way of disguising itself to look inviting. We wouldn't send out invitations to our child's birthday celebration to strangers. We wouldn't pick up hitch hikers while driving home on a dark rainy night. Why do we not guard our hearts as such?
"whatever is true, whatever is honorable, whatever is right, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is of good repute, if there is any excellence and if anything worthy of praise, dwell on these things. The things you have learned and received and heard and seen in me, practice these things, and the God of peace will be with you." Philippians 4:8a-9
"Set a guard, O Lord, over my mouth; Keep watch over the door of my lips. Do not incline my heart to any evil thing, to practice deeds of wickedness with men who do iniquitiy; and do let me eat of their delicacies." Psalm 141:3-4
When we allow asumptions and "fix it" potions into our minds we are sitting on a time bomb. Our minds begin to run wild with all sorts of ideas and worries that most likely will never come, but in allowing them to intertain our minds we have allowed them to steal our joy.
We must eyes our eyes on the Lord and trust in Him.
"Create in me a clean heart, O God, and renew a steadfast spirit within me." Psalm 51:10
What do we do when evil is knocking at our door? What do we do when Satan is standing there in wait? We let God answer the door. Trust Him to answer all that comes knocking. Allow Him to be there as your guard. Remember to put on the full armor of God (Ephesians 6:10-17). Each day I pray for God to place a hedge of protection around my family. Evil is present, but we don't have to allow it in our presence. Be on guard and be ready!