The Encarta Dictionary defines ‘funk’ as a state of melancholy or hopelessness; sadness.
Yep, that describes what I experienced for the past few weeks to a T. I’ve been in a funk before, but without a doubt, this was the worst because of the heavy nature of the things that I allowed to send me into said funk. One of these things was my own ministry and my thoughts about it.
You see, Satan knows exactly where to hit me in order to move my focus from Jesus and onto myself and that is in the area of ministry. I won’t bore you with all the mental gymnastics I went through regarding ministry, but I will tell you I allowed all of it to wear me down to the point that I considered walking away from ministry….completely. The only problem was that I couldn’t. I knew my call to ministry in 2007 was from God. I also knew my passion for ministry and teaching the Word of God. I was just having trouble reconciling what I knew deep in my heart with what was taking place at the moment. I suppose I was questioning my calling.
You know….Satan begins his sneaky little diatribe:
“Did God really call you?”
“No one is interested in hearing you speak.”
“You are not making a difference.”
“No one would miss you if you left ministry.”
And on and on it went.
Two weeks ago I came to the realization that this kind of funk can only be overcome by prayer and fasting, so I began both. Finally, this past weekend the stronghold broke. Praise Jesus!!
Now, I’m not sharing this to get sympathy. That is not what I want and it is certainly not what I deserve. Really, I deserved a good swift kick to the tush for letting Satan hold sway over me for that long.
The reason I’m sharing this is that I would bet my last piece of Italian Cream Cake that there is at least one other person out there with whom Satan is having a heyday.
Do the whispers in your ear sound anything like this?
You are a bad mother.
You should not be home-schooling your children.
No one wants to hear you teach that Sunday school lesson.
What you do doesn’t really matter.
No one would miss you if you were gone.
You are not a good wife.
Look at you, what kind of ministry are you doing? None!
The Lord brought me to a sentence in a book I was reading that stopped me cold and helped achieved the spiritual breakthrough I desperately needed. They were the words from Rev. Robert Nichols, who endured significant persecution for his dedication to ministry. These words are taken from a book written by Rev. Nichols’ daughter Rebecca Nichols Alonzo, entitled “The Devil in Pew Number Seven”. Rev. Nichols and his family endured years of bombings, shootings, threats to their lives, and a home invasion in which Nichols’ wife, Ramona was killed and Nichols was shot twice. All this at the hands of one man who resented their presence in the community.
Ponder Nichols’ words when asked if the persecution would drive him away from serving the Lord in that town.
“When the Lord gets ready for me to leave this church, He won’t send the message by the devil.”
Oh my goodness! That spoke like a megaphone into my heart. I hope it does to yours as well. Let’s personalize it.
“When the Lord gets ready for me to leave ________________________________, He won’t send the message by the devil.”
For me the fill-in-the-blank was ‘ministry’. For you, it might be ‘my marriage’, while for others it might be ‘my job’ or ‘my children’ or ‘teaching Sunday school’ or ‘serving at the homeless shelter’. There are a gazillion possibilities. The key is in knowing who is delivering the messages your heart is getting. Is it God or is it Satan?
I urge you……..consider the message bearer!!
MEDITATION MOMENT: Are you receiving messages to your heart that conflict with what you know to be true based on God’s Word? Has this happened to you in the past? I’d love for you to share about it today.