Self-Defense

 

self defenseI remember years ago taking some judo classes and then later some karate classes. I was learning to defend myself if I were to be attacked.  It makes me smile to remember getting into the little white, loose fitting outfit and doing my routines. I don’t remember “wipe on – wipe off” like The Karate Kid, but the routines were similar. I haven’t ever had to use any of my “ninja skills” in self-defense, and I’m not sure I could. A good bit of life has gone by since those classes.

Just about everyone I know would defend themselves in some way if they were threatened. I know people who are “packing heat” aka carrying a gun wherever they go. I know others who think nothing bad will ever happen. I try to assess situations and choose safety, I try hard not to be an easy target for someone who would want to harm me or my family. At the end of the day, I can’t control all of this. I was reminded this morning that God is my protector and my deliverer. Check this out…

I put no trust in my bow,
    my sword does not bring me victory;
but you give us victory over our enemies,
    you put our adversaries to shame.
In God we make our boast all day long,
    and we will praise your name for ever. (Psalm 44:6-8 NIV)

The Lord is my source of victory. I can’t possibly defend myself like He can. He is my Protector. He is my Provider. He is my Defender. If I trust in my weapons or my training, I will likely be beaten. When I trust in Him, I feel safe and protected.  I’m learning to trust the Lord to lead me away from danger and threats. I’m trusting Him to protect when I am threatened. He is God of Angel Armies – He goes before me and He comes in behind me. I love that song by Chris Tomlin.

You hear me when I call
You are my morning song
Though darkness fills the night
It cannot hide the light

Whom shall I fear

You crush the enemy
Underneath my feet
You are my sword and shield
Though troubles linger still

Whom shall I fear

I know who goes before me
I know who stands behind

The God of angel armies
Is always by my side

The one who reigns forever
He is a friend of mine

The God of angel armies
Is always by my side

My strength is in your name
For you alone can save
You will deliver me
Yours is the victory

Whom shall I fear
Whom shall I fear

And nothing formed against me shall stand
You hold the whole world in your hands
I’m holding on to your promises

You are faithful

Pressing On!

Dwayne

Safe & Secure

LKR032459I have a security system in our home that will warn us audibly if there is an intrusion into our home. It works well we our brain skips a synapse and we forget to turn it off before going outside. The alarm is a serious violation to my ear. I originally installed the alarm so that my wife would feel safe when I’m away traveling. I should confess that over the years I’ve gotten used to having the security system in place when I lay down at night.

Security and safety are important to me. I feel responsible to protect my family and keep them secure. I’ve learned that the Lord has a way better protection/security plan than a simple alarm system. Check this out…

1 Keep me safe, my God,

    for in you I take refuge.

2 I say to the Lord, ‘You are my Lord;

    apart from you I have no good thing.’

7 I will praise the Lord, who counsels me;

    even at night my heart instructs me.

8 I keep my eyes always on the Lord.

    With him at my right hand, I shall not be shaken.

9 Therefore my heart is glad and my tongue rejoices;

    my body also will rest secure,

11 You make known to me the path of life;

    you will fill me with joy in your presence,

    with eternal pleasures at your right hand. (Psalm 16:1-2,7-9,11 NIV)

There is something about this passage that relaxes me. I find comfort knowing that I have protection and security with me all day every day. It’s not simply a physical protection, but spiritual protection as well. The spiritual threat feels way more significant to me than the physical threat.

I have come to realize over the years, that without the Lord – I am nothing. With Him, I am somebody who has value and can bring value to others. He has made me who I am today. It’s been a bit of a crazy journey with some detours, but I’m here now and The Lord is in charge of every area of my life. He leads me through the simplest or the most complex decisions. I can’t imagine my life without Him. I don’t want to try. My role at this point is continuous surrender of areas of my life that I’m still trying to hold on to. The Lord has the best security system on the planet. He knows every threat to me and He’s handling each of them.

Pressing On!

Dwayne

Secure Heart

protected houseWhen I picture something being secured, I imagine that nothing can get inside or gain access without permission. Security is a big deal in our digital world. I am constantly purchasing items online using secure forms or websites. I’ve had my card stolen by purchasing from an “insecure site”. I’ve taken measures to protect my computer from outside access without my permission. I need to take similar precautions with access to my heart. Check this out….

1 Praise the Lord.
Blessed are those who fear the Lord,

    who find great delight in his commands.
2 Their children will be mighty in the land;

    the generation of the upright will be blessed.
3 Wealth and riches are in their houses,

    and their righteousness endures forever.
4 Even in darkness light dawns for the upright,

    for those who are gracious and compassionate and righteous.
5 Good will come to those who are generous and lend freely,

    who conduct their affairs with justice.
6 Surely the righteous will never be shaken;

    they will be remembered forever.
7 They will have no fear of bad news;

    their hearts are steadfast, trusting in the Lord.
8 Their hearts are secure, they will have no fear;

    in the end they will look in triumph on their foes.
9 They have freely scattered their gifts to the poor,

    their righteousness endures forever;

    their horn will be lifted high in honor. (Psalm 112:1-9 NIV)

 

This passage really blessed my heart this morning because the Psalmist described the road map for my life pretty clearly. I want to walk with the Lord and cultivate a genuine respect for all He is and all He is doing. I want my children to know Him and live for Him always. I want to continue to be generous to others. More than anything else, I want a secure and steadfast heart for God. I want to know Him deeply and walk with Him daily. Nothing compares to the greatness of knowing the Lord God.

Pressing On!
Dwayne