Saturday, November 3, 2012

Making the devil smile...

Will you work for the Kingdom of God today or help promote the evils of the devil?

The Lord has recently reminded me that if I'm not actively working for Him, I am (by default) working for the devil. It's not enough to not be evil--that's relatively easy to accomplish (aside from that sinful nature of ours). We can be as good as we want, we can smile and wave and say sweet things to strangers, we can obey the Ten Commandments on a daily basis and still work for the devil on the side.

How?  

Simple. Well, it wasn't so simple until God impressed upon me the sinfulness of my daily routine, but in thinking about His leading, I've realized that I can do evil, spread evil, and make the devil smile just by waking up in the morning.

And then doing nothing.

It's that doing nothing thing that had me stymied for a while, but once it hit me, it hurt. I've been given a gift by God; a gift I am to recognize, work to improve and make as perfect as a human can, and then find ways to use that gift for the glory of His kingdom. It's my belief God has given me the gift of writing. He's also given me the time and resources to use for the purpose of writing, allowed me to retire early with a pension and insurance coverage, and given me a roof over my head and loved ones to live with. I have a wonderful agent, successful work, and a great writing family to hang out with. I have no excuses, no hardships, no reason not to be cranking out two books a year. But how do I repay Him for all His blessings?

I procrastinate. I stall. I hem and haw. I rewrite instead of "new-write." I redesign my blog sites, rearrange my office, hang pictures, tidy up my desk, check my email, cruise the internet, stare out the window, brew another cup of coffee, take a nap, play Freecell (trying to fool myself by thinking I'm "plotting" or "developing my characters"). I have the audacity to tell myself I'm not good enough, when the whole time, I have the Creator of the Universe sitting beside me. Encouraging me. Loving me. Shielding me. Inspiring me.

But still I find excuses. And when I do nothing for the Kingdom of God, I work for the devil. Plain and simple. All the while I'm doing nothing in my "preparation" to do good, God is saddened and the devil is rubbing his beastly hands together, licking his lie-infested lips, and grinning. Yep, I've come upstairs to my office to write for the glory of our Heavenly Father and instead I've made the devil smile.

Yes, there will always be legitimate reasons we can't do as much writing (or whatever other gift we have) as our hearts and minds know we should. Life does get in the way. Responsibilities to our loved ones or employers or even our church often keep us from being as productive as we know we can be. I also have to market my published work and my fellow writers all know what a chunk of time that takes from writing new material. But carrying out those responsibilities in a loving, efficient manner is much different from wasting valuable time by simply doing nothing--time we could be using to increase His flock. There are no "time-outs" in this game during which both teams rest. The devil and his henchmen never rest and thinking we can plays right into his greasy little hands. Procrastination is one of Satan's most valuable and effective tools. If he can't make us sin purposely, he'll find ways to make us do it without our realizing whose bench we're sitting on.

Without a doubt, I write. I make progress every day, but usually not as much progress as I should and with far more procrastination than even remotely permissible. While I don't have the urge to kill, lust after others, steal, cheat, or bear false witness, I still sin in a way that's hurtful to the cause of our Lord. It's not what I do, but rather what I don't do that saddens God and makes the devil smile.

From now on, I'm going (with God's help) to wake up every morning with the express purpose of making Him smile and causing Satan great anguish. No more devil smiles directed at me. No more glee in the camp of the demons. No more ammunition handed over to the enemy.

No more doing nothing.

Until the next time...



Laughing with the Lord #4

Welcome to #4 of Laughing with the Lord! Wondering what makes God smile has long been a burning question for me. I know He smiles and laug...