Soft Targets

Soft Targets    There was a time in this country, not so long ago, when airport security was a breeze, when bullies and mystery meat were school’s scariest possibilities, when no one thought twice about a misplaced backpack at a public event.

For better or worse, those days are behind us. We live in a world awash in images of 9/11, Newtown, the Boston Marathon… We are awake to the reality that we have enemies, and those enemies want our destruction.

They are merciless. Bloodshed and terror are their goal. Ignoring them, pretending they don’t exist won’t make them go away. They target our soft spots. Our fragile areas. Like a sweet faced eight-year-old boy waiting at the finish line to celebrate with his father.

Why does terror so often target children?

I believe it is for one simple reason. Jesus loves them. He’s crazy about them. And Satan hates Jesus so passionately that he wants to destroy anything that brings him joy.

We have a spiritual enemy who is just as real as those hateful men who have killed and maimed. He and the wicked angels who have chosen to follow him are active and working in the world, and ignoring them, pretending they don’t exist won’t make them go away. They have a goal: the annihilation of everything God loves.

Peter wrote,” Be careful! Watch out for attacks from the Devil, your great enemy. He prowls around like a roaring lion, looking for some victim to devour.” (1 Peter 5:8 NLT) I’ve watched enough nature specials to know that hunting lions don’t usually stalk the strongest, largest members of the herd. They go for the weak, the vulnerable.

    The young.

Families are soft targets. Satan shows no mercy to children, doesn’t think twice about laying them low. What better way to steal parents’ focus and hope than to mess with their kids?

The main goal of our organization is to get the Bible into the heart language of every person on the planet, and this is something that terrifies the enemy. With God’s Word comes the power to fight back – the Truth overcoming lies, the Light melting the darkness. People who have lived captive to fear and uncertainty hear the sweet words of Life and see, clear and sure, that the Maker of the universe knows their names and loves them high and deep and wide. That they can be new creations. Free.

This is the last thing that ancient snake wants, to see God glorified, his people armed with Truth.

    So he strikes, again and again, at the most defenseless among us. Our children. Our families. Our wounded.

And this, friends, is why we do what we do. Because God has called us and our co-workers to stand in the gap, to fight on behalf of missionary kids and their families. To teach them truth, to love them back from the edge, to cry with them, to dry their tears and offer them hope, to cheer them on, to pray and pray and pray some more.

And this is also why we need you, desperately, to stand with us in prayer. The enemy does not want us to succeed. While we’re not looking for a demon under every rock and tree, and we understand that things sometimes just go wrong, we also believe that targeted spiritual attacks do happen. We are at risk. Our girls are at risk. The families we serve are at risk. And right now we’re in the process of writing our packing list and applying for visas, getting ready for our trip to minister to folks on the front lines in Papua New Guinea, a nation where evil is not easily loosening its grip. We need the people of God around us, praying for us and reminding us that the battle is already won.

    The battle is won.

And this is why that old toothless lion, that fangless snake is so spitting mad. He can make our lives hard now, he can harass and hassle and make us feel pretty miserable. But, ultimately, he is defeated. His time is coming.

And Jesus… That beautiful God-Man, acquainted with grief. Jesus still stands, now and always, eyes laughing and arms stretched to the smallest and most vulnerable, saying, “Let the little children come to me. Don’t stop them! For the Kingdom of Heaven belongs to such as these. “ (Matthew 19:14 NLT)

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