We have a 10 month old Golden Retriever puppy called Sadie. Sadie is the sweetest tempered dog you could ever meet, but for amateur naive dog owners, like Andy and I, she continues to present us with her challenges.
With the help of our trusty ‘Golden Retrievers for Dummies’ book we have weathered most challenges (the chewing of Isaac's limbs, and digging excavations; to name just a few). However! There is one trait that is proving slightly tedious to us and, quite probably, to all neighbours within a few mile radius of our previously peaceful, countryside community. Sadie's backyard barking!
Whenever Sadie is let loose in our fenced back yard she turns from the pleasant, sweet tempered pup that we all love, into what sounds like a rottweiler from hell. The poor goat that lives in our neighbours’ garden gets the worst affront of Sadie's barking, but she isn't too picky who or what she barks at - the neighbours' children, squirrels, passing trains, school buses! The only thing that will stop Sadie from barking is when Andy or I walk outside and shout ‘SADIE STOP BARKING! BE QUIET!’ She will stop straight away, look incredibly sheepish and plod about her business of trying to destroy every planted shrub we possess.
Isn't this similar to the peace-disturbing barks we hear from the enemy in our hearts? How often are you simply trying to go about your day, walking with the Lord, and there the enemy is barking some accusation or insecurity into your heart. His barks are so familiar, always full of accusation, negativity and fear. Reminding us of our failings and weaknesses, scaring us with the unknowns, replaying hurtful words and wounds in our lives (that we thought were dealt with ). Bark... Bark... Bark... until it is all we can hear, niggling relentless around our hearts. Robbing us of the peace and security we have in the One who holds our lives securely in His hands.
Whatever tactic he uses, Satan's plan is always to take our eyes off Jesus. When we listen, and entertain his lies, not only do we temporarily lose the peace and safety God has available for us, but we find our eyes so fixed on ourselves that we fail to walk in the paths our Heavenly Father has laid out for us.
So, next time the enemy is barking his accusations , negativity and fear into your heart, I would encourage you to recognise it for what it is, and tell him to STOP! Use Scripture to remind him of the truth of who you are in Christ and just who your Heavenly Father is. Fix your thoughts firmly on Him and put a stop to anything disturbing your precious perfect peace.
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