In the Christian life and our walk with God, as with any other sphere of life, victory is not automatically guaranteed or assured. One has to systematically prepare and diligently work for it. Scripture, the manual given to us by God, gives us all the instructions we need to live an insanely productive and consistently victorious life.
All Scripture is inspired by God and is profitable for teaching, for rebuking, for correcting, for training in righteousness, so that the man of God may be complete, equipped for every good work. 1 Timothy 3:16 – 17.
Here we find all that we require to live the lives we have been called to – victorious and fruitful. To be sure our victory has most certainly been wrought on the cross by Christ. But in order to experience His victory in our own lives in practical terms, we will need to engage with Him continuously appropriating it for ourselves through His word. So the word of God becomes central to a victorious and insanely productive life.
Therefore it is paramount that one engages with and processes the word of God at a deeper level if one is to experience the transformation it brings and the success it delivers.
He is like a tree planted beside streams of water that bears its fruit in season and whose leaf does not wither. Whatever he does prospers. Psalm 1:3
Do you process His word at a deeper level through meditation and memorisation or do you only afford it a shallow reception in your life?
Do you have a routine, a set time to purposefully dwell in His word? Do you have a quiet time each day, a moment you spare to hear His voice to you? Do you give Him space to speak to you through His abiding word?
My sheep hear My voice, I know them, and they follow Me. John 10:27
How well do you set yourself up to daily hear your Shepherd’s voice?
How much space do you make for Him in your life each day to hear His voice? How important is His voice to you in your life?
Have you placed yourself (or obediently submitted to God placing you) in a particular fellowship of believers or church environment where, not only your faith is continually nourished and nurtured with the systematic and anointed teaching and preaching of God’s word but you are being continually challenged and stretched too?
Do you make time for in depth study of His word (personally and in community with other believers) to discover His enduring person and character setting yourself up to discern His voice that may come to you through other avenues?
This is how you set yourself up to hear His voice.
If you’re not hearing the voice of the Great Shepherd who has categorically claimed that His sheep hear His voice, then you ought to check if you’ve set yourself right to hear His voice in your life.
If you intentionally or unintentionally remove yourself from the place where God has placed you where your faith is to be nourished and nurtured – of course there will be consequences, of course your faith will suffer, of course it will get a knock. Of course you will fall prey to the enemy and his relentless tactic of lying in wait for an opportune moment, (Luke 4:13) for a window of opportunity in which to pounce and launch his attack. In 1 Peter 5:8 he is likened to a roaring lion waiting for someone to devour (!), not play with. It will not be without consequence. Your faith will not only get a knock but will eventually get so emaciated and weakened exposing you to to more of his attacks.
You have to be one up on the enemy and not needlessly fall prey to him.
“Look, I’m sending you out like sheep among wolves. Therefore be as wise as serpents and as harmless as doves. Matthew 10:16
I have done this so that we may not be taken advantage of by Satan. For we are not ignorant of his schemes. 2 Corinthians 2:11
Be alert and of sober mind. Your enemy the devil prowls around like a roaring lion looking for someone to devour. 1 Peter 5:8
This then is how you set yourself up for victory over the enemy – exercising wisdom, not being ignorant of his schemes and maintaining alertness.
I completely agree, it is so important to consistently keep oneself conscious of God’s presence and allow it to work in your life otherwise we strip it of all it’s influence in our life and leave ourselves vulnerable. It is our duty as Christians to constantly review ourselves because it is so easy to become complacent in our faith. I personally think we must consistently ask the Holy Spirit for strength and guidance just as Jesus did ,(and asked us to do),in Gethsemane.