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  • Writer's pictureBarbara Byers

Engaging the Promises

Updated: Oct 13, 2021

The word “engagement” has captured my attention recently and I’ve been considering God’s offer to engage with us, and his loving summons for us to engage with him. Engagement involves an agreement and commitment requiring connection and participation. These are compelling words indeed, and beg the questions: with what and who are we to engage? And then: from what and who are we to disengage?

1 Cor. 14:20 states: “Do not be children in your thinking; yet in evil be babes, but in your thinking be mature.” Often to mature in Christ, we have to first reckon with what we have habitually engaged as heart-thoughts. Our enemy is full of mixtures of half-truths and misrepresentations to which we can all fall prey. He is stealthy; he works in illusion and uncertainty and prowls the perimeter of our lives looking for a way in so that he can destroy (1 Pet. 5:8). When we engage with his deceptions, truth becomes deformed within us, even calcifying, deluding us. For many of us these lies have been woven into our story lines and created scripts about our lives that we continually live from, often unaware. We have let the enemy insert his lies into our pain. Then we become obedient to our agreements and collude with our known enemy! When we have agreements with lies and even half-truths, hope begins to be stripped, joy and confidence begin to wane and our destiny is stymied.

How we need the Lord to show us the lies…and He will if we ask! He is the Spirit of Truth. Once He brings us truth, we then can choose to engage with it, loving the light rather than darkness. As King Tirian of Narnia declared in C. S. Lewis The Last Battle: “The light is dawning, the lie is broken.” As His light of truth comes, grace comes that we might engage with that truth and dismantle strongholds, thought patterns and reasonings in conflict with God. We disengage in order to engage with the Lord; we take our thoughts captive and involve ourselves with his thoughts and ways.

This engagement is then reflected in the situations we find ourselves. Someone recently said to me: “We either engage with the problem or we engage with the promises.” Our engagement with a current difficulty can be so subtle because the cares of this world draw us to worry or introspection, obstructing the light. So we must stay aware, choosing to engage with his promises, and with the faithful One who has made those promises which are always “yes and amen.” Let’s ask the Lord to make us aware of what and who we are engaging, and for the grace to disengage from what is not of his making. We can come away from the shadowlands into the full light and engage with His presence and promises in every situation, at every bend.

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