You Wouldn’t Understand

Likewise, two people lying close together can keep each other warm. But how can one be warm alone?

Ecclesiastes 4:11

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Have you ever noticed that when things start to fall apart the first thing we think of to do is run away? It seems like when things start to get stressful, we make a big mistake, somebody talks poorly about us or to us, everything in us screams to turn the other way and run until we can’t run anymore. I’m going to say that it isn’t just me who understands that. It’s the whole ‘Fight or Flight’ response. What this ‘Fight or Flight’ response is describe as is ‘a physiological reaction that occurs in response to a perceived harmful event, attack, or threat to survival’. This couldn’t be a better description of what this is. As Christians we have somebody that is constantly on the prowl looking for ways to attack, as 1 Peter 5:8 tells us:

Be alert and of sober mind. Your enemy the devil prowls around like a roaring lion looking for someone to devour.

Again, in Job we see that the Devil is roaming the earth. beat-rubbish-road-rage-42iNaF-clipartDo you think it is to help the old lady cross the street with her groceries? Absolutely not!

One day the angels came to present themselves before the Lord, and Satan also came with them. The Lord said to Satan, “Where have you come from?” Satan answered the Lord, “From roaming throughout the earth, going back and forth on it.” Then the Lord said to Satan, “Have you considered my servant Job?There is no one on earth like him; he is blameless and upright, a man who fears God and shuns evil.” “Does Job fear God for nothing?” Satan replied. 10 “Have you not put a hedge around him and his household and everything he has? You have blessed the work of his hands, so that his flocks and herds are spread throughout the land. 11 But now stretch out your hand and strike everything he has, and he will surely curse you to your face.” 12 The Lord said to Satan, “Very well, then, everything he has is in your power, but on the man himself do not lay a finger.” Then Satan went out from the presence of the Lord.

What happens next shows the true nature of Satan.

13 One day when Job’s sons and daughters were feasting and drinking wine at the oldest brother’s house, 14 a messenger came to Job and said, “The oxen were plowing and the donkeys were grazing nearby, 15 and the Sabeans attacked and made off with them. They put the servants to the sword, and I am the only one who has escaped to tell you!” 16 While he was still speaking, another messenger came and said, “The fire of God fell from the heavens and burned up the sheep and the servants, and I am the only one who has escaped to tell you!” 17 While he was still speaking, another messenger came and said, “The Chaldeans formed three raiding parties and swept down on your camels and made off with them. They put the servants to the sword, and I am the only one who has escaped to tell you!” 18 While he was still speaking, yet another messenger came and said, “Your sons and daughters were feasting and drinking wine at the oldest brother’s house, 19 when suddenly a mighty wind swept in from the desert and struck the four corners of the house. It collapsed on them and they are dead, and I am the only one who has escaped to tell you!”

Within one day Job loses all of his oxen, donkeys, sheep, servants, camels, and children. It actually says while the first messenger was still speaking, the second came. While the second messenger was still speaking, the third came… Could you imagine?! That’s a rough day!

We do have a true enemy that is wishing us harm. We do have a foe that is doing what he can to derail us. The thing that Satan wants more than anything is for you to be silence. He wants you to close yourself off. Typical when a predator is hunting a prey they will get one alone. They will separate one from the bunch and that is when death happens. 1280x720-V-sLions can’t kill an entire heard together. So why is it our instinct to separate ourselves from others when we feel attacked? Back to the ‘Fight or Flight’ reaction we all have ingrained in us. The natural instinct is to close off, quit everything, and run away. With every attack we feel coming or are currently going through we have a choice. Just like with everything in life, we have a choice. We have the choice to stand firm in the foundation God has built in us and fight against the urge to run or we can give in. We can shut all of the people that God has placed in our lives as a support system. We can quit going to church to be fed. We can quit all the ministries we are involved in. We can quit being God’s hands and feet in this world. While going through attacks we can feel like ‘well just missing this one Sunday won’t hurt anything’. However, just like the lion looking for his prey, Satan is as well. The moment he sees us start to close off, is the moment he has found a way in. In Ecclesiastes 4:7-12 we are told:

Again I saw something meaningless under the sun: There was a man all alone; he had neither son nor brother. There was no end to his toil, yet his eyes were not content with his wealth. “For whom am I toiling,” he asked, “and why am I depriving myself of enjoyment?” This too is meaningless— a miserable business! Two are better than one, because they have a good return for their labor: 10 If either of them falls down, one can help the other up. But pity anyone who falls and has no one to help them up. 11 Also, if two lie down together, they will keep warm. But how can one keep warm alone? 12 Though one may be overpowered, two can defend themselves. A cord of three strands is not quickly broken.

Also, in Proverbs 17:17 we are told:

A friend loves at all times, and a brother is born for a time of adversity.

The Proverb tells us that a friend (ie, brother) is there for when you go through times of adversity. That word ‘adversity’ in the Hebrew is tsarah. It means ‘affliction, anguish, distress, tribulation, trouble’. So God places friendships in our lives specifically for these times of anguish, distress, tribulation, and trouble. Shying away when we are at our most vulnerable is not what God wants for us. When we are struggling to see the light at the end of the tunnel, pushing away all those who care for you is not what He wants. During these times we have fight against that ‘Fight or Flight’ instinct and dig our heals in. If we don’t have the strength to stand firm, we have let our Christian friends hold us in place. There is an entire support system waiting for you. Don’t miss out on what a blessing friendships can be in times of trouble.

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