“Satan has asked permission to sift you, Sharon” my friend said.
My mom who lives with us was in excruciating pain, and she had no one to help her- but me. Same hour, my daughter (who was due to have a baby) called and said that the Dr. was sending her to the hospital because her blood pressure was skyrocketing. She couldn’t get a hold of her husband, so I wanted to be there ASAP in case they delivered the baby. My husband had taken our only car to help someone and was not picking up his phone. He was out of range. Two weddings were scheduled to take place in our barn and one was renting our house- all in less than 36 hours.
Brides and vendors were calling, emailing, texting. My mom was groaning, my daughter needed me and I was supposed to be preparing messages for a retreat that I would leave for in less than 36 hours! My phone was blowing up and so was I. I didn’t know which emergency took precedence. Without realizing, I started to get mad at Dale for not answering his phone and leaving me without a car. He was innocent, but I was flailing. My faith started to quiver in fear. Despair attempted to envelope me. The day was brutal. I finally called a friend. She firmly said, “Sharon, Satan is sifting you like wheat.” She reminded me of Peter in the Bible. I got off the phone and went into prayer, laying my load at the feet of Jesus. Then, I picked up the Word and read the story of Peter. If you’re visiting me from Proverbs 31 devotions today, welcome!
It’s the night before Jesus is crucified. He’s eating the “Last Supper” with His disciples…
He turns to Peter and says, “Simon, Simon, Satan has asked permission to sift you like wheat. But I have prayed for you, that your faith fail not; and when you have returned to Me, strengthen the brethren.” Luke 22:31-32
A few hours later, Satan pulled out his first round of ammunition on Peter. In the first round, he used fear to get Peter to deny Christ (whenever fear rears its ugly head, know you’ve got the drags of Hell scheming against you). Satan knows that if he can get Peter/us to fall for fear, our faith may fail. If we fall and our faith fails, the second round of ammunition is stronger than the first. He sends the atomic bomb of shame and embarrassment, because we failed.
A “sifter” is a machine that crushes grain and turns it into soft flour.
Satan was asking permission to crush and pulverize Peter.
It’s clear from this scripture that Jesus gave Satan right to pulverize him. But He tells Peter that He would pray for him that his faith would not fail and when he would come back, to strengthen the brethren. I love this. We know from John 21 that Jesus did restore Peter and asked him to feed His sheep.
Three things we need to know in our troubles:
1. Satan goes before the throne of God and accuses us just like Peter and Job (Revelation 12:10). We are no different from Job (Job 1:8) and Peter. He asks if he may sift and pulverize us. Jesus tells us in Rev 12:11 that we overcome these accusations by; 1. Blood of Lamb, 2. Word of our testimony, 3. Don’t love our life- even unto death. In middle of trials only a fool vents all of his feelings, but the wise holds them in. We need to speak truth out loud in middle of our trials, not defeat.
Romans 8:28, “God works all things for the good of those who love Him.”
2. Jesus is praying for us, that our faith fail not. He allows these things for divine purposes. Our faith is increased each time and we learn to trust God’s faithfulness. Our faith is increased and our testimony stronger. Peter was stronger than ever- after his failure. He knew Jesus was merciful and forgave him. Jesus is merciful and forgives us as well.
“And after you have suffered for a little while, the God of all grace will Himself restore you and make you strong, firm, and steadfast” 1 Peter 5:10.
Peter learned this lesson, not from his success, but from his failure.
3. Even when we fail horribly, He quickly forgives when we ask and uses our weaknesses for His glory. Peter was used to preach the gospel powerfully and his words are still preached today! If our faith fails us- we need to immediately ask forgiveness and move into a triumphant life not bogged down with guilt from self condemnation.
Self condemnation is probably one of the worse weapons of torture Satan tries to defeat us with. DON’T let self condemnation make your faith fail, but if it does- RETURN and strengthen others!
In my weakness the Lord was more than POWERFUL at the retreat last weekend. The weddings were a huge success (thank you Rachel Moberley). My daughter’s blood pressure came down and she delivered her baby naturally, yesterday, after I got back from speaking! My mom is still in pain, we’re going to a surgeon today.
Has Satan been sifting you lately? Don’t believe his lies! God is more than faithful and will do more than you could think or imagine. Read the Word for truth, and pray!
Tell me in one word what you would like for me to pray for you. It will enter your name for the drawing to win The Confident Heart Devotional and earrings with Genesis 50:20 “You intended to harm me, but God intended it for good” inscribed on them.
Hudson James Curry born 11/16/14 9.1lbs Isn’t he beautiful! #6 Grand Baby!!
For those who are visiting me from P31 devotion, here are the turkeys that the devotion were written about
When Trials Hit Every Area of Your Life The Trial the Truth and the Triumph Remedy
8 Christmas Cookie Recipes to Give as Gifts Homemade Christmas Ornaments Making Dried Fruit Christmas Ornaments
Lydia June Easter- Gift from God-Proud Grandma
Margaret Morgan is the winner of the cornucopia basket!! Email me your address!
Our daughter Hannah and her husband, Jake had their first baby this past week. We have been thanking God everyday for Lydia.
Hannah’s labor was quick, but hard. Immediately after Lydia was born she was taken to the NICU, she had Meconium aspiration. She was released to a normal room in less than 24 hours. I’ve been with Hannah most of the week and now preparing for a marriage conference tomorrow where Dale and I are the keynote speakers.
Last weekend I had the privilege of speaking in Buffalo, NY at the Women Standing Strong conference. The theme of the weekend was Breaking Down the Walls. Oh MY how the Lord ministered to us all. Before the Israelites could come into the Promised Land the walls of Jericho HAD to come down. We all have walls that we build around ourselves from time to time. Sometimes we build them because of past disappointments, sometimes because we’re too afraid to trust God. . .
What walls have you built around yourself thinking you were protecting yourself when all along they are preventing you from the greater blessing? Lord, show us the walls and help us to take them down. We want everything You have for us and nothing less. In Jesus’ name, amen.
Still praying for last weeks prayer requests. I’ve got three prayer warriors praying over these. My heart breaks for you and the things you’re going through. May the Lord strengthen you and give you peace that passes all understanding.
I’ve had this basket for 25 years
Pray Until Something Happens Story
Last weeks winner of 3 books, DVD, candle jars and seeds is Kim- you posted on 2014/09/18 at 4:24 PM.
A man was sleeping at night in his cabin when suddenly his room filled with bright light and the Savior appeared. The Lord told the man He had work for him to do, and showed him a large rock in front of his cabin. The Lord explained that the man was to push against the rock with all his might. This, the man did, day after day.
For many years he toiled from sun up to sun down with his shoulders set squarely against the cold, massive surface of the unmoving rock, pushing with all his might. Each night the man returned to his cabin sore, and worn out, feeling that his whole day had been spent in vain.
Seeing that the man was showing signs of discouragement, the Adversary decided to enter the picture by placing thoughts into the man’s weary mind: “You’ve been pushing against that rock for a long time, and it hasn’t budged. Why kill yourself over this? You’re never going to move it” —thus, giving the man the impression that the task was impossible and that he was a failure. These thoughts discouraged and disheartened the man.
“Why kill myself over this?” he thought. “I’ll just put in my time, giving just the minimum effort and that’ll be good enough.” And that’s just what he planned to do— until one day he decided to make it a matter of prayer and take his troubled thoughts to the Lord. “Lord” he said, “I’ve labored long and hard in Your service, putting all my strength to do that which You’ve asked. Yet, after all this time, I haven’t even budged that rock by half a millimeter. What’s wrong? Why am I failing?”
The Lord responded compassionately,
“My friend, when I asked you to serve Me— you accepted. I told you that your task was to push against the rock with all your strength— which you’ve done. Never once did I mention to you that I expected you to move it. Your task was to push. And now you come to Me— with your strength spent, thinking that you’ve failed. But is that really so?”
“Look at yourself. Your arms are strong and muscular. Your back sinew is mighty. Your hands are callused from the constant pressure;and your legs have become massive and hard. Through opposition you’ve grown much and your abilities now surpass that which you used to have. Yet you haven’t moved the rock. But your calling was to be obedient and to push and to exercise your faith and trust in My wisdom. This you’ve done. I, my friend, will now move the rock.”
At times, when we hear from God, we tend to use our own intellect to decipher what He wants. What God ACTUALLY wants is just simple OBEDIENCE and FAITH IN HIM. By all means, exercise the faith that moves mountains, but know that it’s still God who moves the mountains.
P.U.S.H. = Pray Until Something Happens! When everything seems to go wrong, just P.U.S.H. … When the job gets you down, P.U.S.H. … When people don’t react the way you think they should, P.U.S.H. … When your money looks funny and the bills are due, P.U.S.H. … When people just don’t understand you, just P.U.S.H.
What mountain do you need GOD to move? Your finances? Job? A relationship? Sickness? Your ministry? Tell me in the comment section below. Your request will enter your name to win this cornucopia full of fresh fall gourds, some from my very own garden. Cornucopia means, horn of plenty or abundance of something. May the Lord bless you abundantly. Last week we prayed for your prayer requests. Many answered prayers have been coming in!! Thank You Lord! We need each other! The power of prayer is incredible.
I’ve had this basket for 25 years
A Path on our farm where I sometimes walk and talk to the Lord
If you are visiting from P31′s devotion today, welcome!
Raging anger morphed him into someone I’d never seen. It was horrible. Just minutes before, we were having a civilized conversation.
His body racked with pain. Morphine, alcohol, and other drugs were his best friends. Doctors couldn’t find the source of his pain. He looked desperately to me. “Help me, Sharon, I can’t live like this anymore.”
I prayed with him and when I opened my eyes, asked him the question that led to his rage, “Is there someone you need to forgive?” He became fidgety. His voice got stronger and assertive. “Well, yes but that has nothing to do with, anything.”
I asked, “Who can’t you forgive?” He rolled his eyes, got out of his chair, and morphed into a mad man. Profanities shot from the secret place of his heart.
Gently I said, “Can you forgive them?”
“NO!” He screamed. “Leave me the %^%$# alone! You have no idea what you are asking!”
With tears in my eyes, I said, “Yes, I do. I’ve had to forgive. . .”
When Satan gets a foothold (a door) into our life through anger, bitterness, or unforgiveness- it’s destructive.
He (Satan) wants to kill, steal, and destroy. Give him the opportunity and he’ll wreck our life; physically, mentally, emotionally and spiritually.
Even the secular world knows that unforgiveness and bitterness can cause untold physical and mental issues.
What lives within the secret place of our soul, ultimately defines our life.
Every day, many times (even hourly) I have to go before with the Lord and give Him my burdens, grievances, and hurt. I open the Word desperately searching for answers and He always provides. He’s faithful.
The more time I spend in the secret place with Him and His Word, the more His attributes become mine. I see others through His eyes and not my own. I can forgive as He forgives because He gives me His ability. His love consumes me and I am able to live above my circumstances and not be controlled by them.
Oh, love- His love “is as strong as death. . . Many waters cannot quench love, nor can the floods drown it” (Song of Songs 8:7a). Bitterness, unforgiveness. . . can’t live in the presence of Jesus’ love. It conquers all!
His love is the antidote for the poison of it. The secret place of our heart is sacred to Jesus. We can’t let unforgiveness reside there. It can cause serious issues.
In Matthew 15:18, Jesus tells us, “ what comes out of the mouth proceeds from the heart. . .” If we bury resentment in the secret place of our heart, it will come out one way or the other. What lives within the secret place of our soul- ultimately defines our life.
Is there someone you need to forgive? Someone you can’t love? Get alone in a room. Shut the door.
1. Ask Jesus to help you by the Helper, Holy Spirit 2. Forgive (meaning to release from judgement) them 3. Tell Satan (out-loud)- “In the Name that is above every other name JESUS… The Accuser (Satan) has no power over me and I’m free. FREE INDEED!”
There’s also a test I use on my heart. Think about the person that you may have an issue with. Pray that God will pour bountiful blessings on them and that He will prosper them in everything they do. If you can’t pray that, go back to step #1.
If they live near by, bring them a plate of cookies (8 of my favorite recipes)or invite them to a homemade German Pot Roast dinner with all the trimmings! If they live far away, send a card or call them on the phone in a kind, humble spirit. An act of love is powerful.
None of us are exempt from hardships with difficult people. Injustices are worthy of anger. It’s healthy to get angry over injustice. But, anger can never be allowed to rule over us. We can’t open the door of bitterness and unforgiveness to dwell within. We must guard the secret place of our heart from everything that pollutes.
Now, to get back to the story with my friend…
He FORGAVE and is a new man!! He was tormented for 40 years and is now free! What lives within the secret place of his soul, now gloriously defines his life. He’s a new man with a peace that passes understanding!
Do you or someone in your life struggle with anger, bitterness or unforgiveness? Leave a one word comment below and we will pray. Your comment will enter you to win three of my favorite books, a DVD, the glass candle holders shown and seeds from my zinnia plants here: The Unburdened Heart by Suzie Eller, A Tale of Three Kings (A Study in Brokenness) and The Greatest Thing in the World by Henry Drummond and DVD Les Miserables.
Proverbs 4:23 says, “Above all else, guard your heart, for everything you do flows from it.”
Rachael’s baby shower was this past weekend! Her baby is due November 4. It’s a boy! They haven’t announced his first name yet. Hence his last name “Curry” strung at top of cake between two branches. Organic gluten free cake. Made with all natural dyes. I curled organic chocolate to make trees on the cake. Wilton tip 233 piped frosting to look like grass for the animals to stand on and tree tops. I used Wilton tip 48 for the rest of the frosting. We had lots of tree stumps ready for fall splitting and used one to set cake on.
Rachael, her sisters, niece and me. Rachael’s the one in the red dress in the center! Her sister, Hannah is due to have baby, Lydia- next week!!! We are SO excited!!!Her mother-in law gave Hannah’s baby shower last month. Hannah is on the end.
Homemade Beatrix Potter flags decorated the table- thanks to Grandpa Dale!
Hannah prepared the meat, cheese and fruit platter.
Jennifer made buckeye acorns. The flower arrangements were freshly pulled carrots, radishes and fresh basil from the garden displayed in mason jars.
Dairy free Punch. Pureed raspberries, pineapple juice, coconut milk and ginger-ale.
P Friends and family came from NYC, NC and all over VA to come to the shower!
Chrissy- childhood best friend
Mother-in-law, Barbara Curry, Rachael and her sister-in-law, Laura
Rachael and Grandma Shanaberger
Aunt Dawn, Rachael and Grandma Marilyn
Aunt Susan, cousin Danielle, Rachael and cousin Lauren
Selena and Rachael. Heather hollowed cabbage out and filled with spinach dip- served with vegetables.
Rachael due November 4 and her sister due Sept 18 and they didn’t plan it! Heather, their oldest sister had her baby in March. BLESSINGS!!!!
Her friends and family showered her with blessings all day! It was a perfect shower!