Love Sets The Captives Free
By: Danny Wallace
There is an old saying within the church that warns, “Never pray for patience.” We all know better than to do that. That’s Lesson #1 in fundamental prayer class 101. No sooner than we pray for patience there comes an onslaught of circumstances to help us build that patience muscle, The same can be said of choosing to love.
Lynn and I have been in ministry a long time. Line us up with every person who is in ministry and we would most certainly rate at the bottom of the list of those possessing impressive stature. Just because you’ve lived as long as we have does not mean you know everything. In fact, on most days, we don’t feel that we know much of anything. My father used to say, “If there’s one thing I DO know, it’s that I DO NOT know.” That about sums us up.
What we have learned is that the road of life never became truly rough until the day we planted this ministry on the immoveable foundation of blessing, love, and forgiveness. I think we planted it there because we knew that across every day of our lives we have needed, and will continue to need those same treasures from others. If we truly reap what we sow, we have chosen to sow these great treasures because these are the things we need the most for our own shortcomings.
I have learned that the enemy is not threatened by what he sees in the lives of God’s kids within these modern times in which we live. He doesn’t tremble at our wealth or our grand intelligence. His kingdom is full of both. He is not threatened by our great accomplishments or multiple ideas of who God is, whom He loves, and whom He doesn’t. He rules the lowly kingdom of earth and he knows exactly who God is. After all, he was a treasured angel who has been in the presence of our loving Papa.
He is not impressed with our “idea” of God since most of our ideas regarding who God is have been formed by his own design from the center of his grand cage of religion. In fact, Lucifer is perfectly content with our idea of an angry, judgmental God. The fear keeps his army in full allegiance to his cruel agenda.
What he does fear is the unearthing of our treasures – treasures presented to us by Jesus Christ. Lucifer feared their unmerited presentation so much that he violently tempted Jesus for 40 days and 40 nights, hoping to break the resolve of God’s perfect sacrifice. But Jesus would not be deterred. His heart was full of hope for our destinies. Beaten, falsely accused, and bleeding profusely, Jesus held those treasures close to His loving heart, as He struggled to the cross to present them to us.
If you remember nothing else I ever write, remember this. Lucifer is not afraid of our deep, complex, and almost “impossible” to understand theology, teachings, and grand ministry platforms. In fact, he applauds anything that draws attention away from Jesus, who is overflowing with the treasures of blessing, love, and forgiveness at the center of His heart for each of us.
He rejoices at our ridiculous offers of God’s favor in exchange for deeper servitude, better performance, and greater financial contribution to man’s ministry cage. He loves how we climb the ladder of religion’s success and compete for jets, applause, mansions, and expensive fleets of automobiles. He wants us isolated behind our bodyguards, minions, and public relation specialists. In fact, Lucifer attends, and enjoys every meeting, sermon, or discussion where the same “Yes Men” who attend our meetings, and hang on every word applaud these attributes. He doesn’t just applaud – He gives us a standing ovation.
If you want to empty the room of evil just love. Lucifer has no weapon formed against it, and he has no understanding of its glory and power. Oh, he will make a noise and clang his critical pots and pans together, but do not fear the criticism. Most of us never sounded so complex and impressive until a few critics made us sound like a movie of the week. Let the criticism expand your platform and deepen your love.
Evil has nothing good to say, while love always speaks God’s best. Evil uses words to nail flesh to a tree. Love hangs in silence to set the captives free.