A year or so ago, my small group from church studied C.S. Lewis’ satirical masterpiece Screwtape Letters. Set eerily in an office in Hell, one of Satan’s senior tempters, Screwtape, schemes meticulously to capture the souls of unsuspecting humans on earth.
A powerful realization stuck with me since our group’s study of the book–there is an active Enemy in this world and it is a mistake to underestimate him. The Bible warns us of this very thing: “Your enemy the devil prowls around like a roaring lion, looking for someone to devour” (1 Peter 5:8, niv). And even more chilling than the image of a hungry lion about to pounce is the psalmist’s warning: “He has set traps for me along my path” (Psalm 140:5, niv).
Two things dawned on me:
1) The snake in the garden revealed the aim of Satan–to create a mindset of “scarcity” (“You’re missing out! You need that ONE forbidden fruit on the tree to complete you. God is holding back a blessing on you” um… that’s my paraphrase).
2) Scripture holds the antidote to the pervasive “scarcity hiss” of the snake (and the more you think about it, the more pervasive it is. Scarcity has a tight grip on our minds). Jesus came to earth to break that hold. He showed us how to live “abundantly”–in our ordinary days as well as in eternity. As the Bible claims: “The light shines in the darkness, and the darkness can not overcome it” John 1:5, niv. Thank God!
Over the last year, I’ve been studying the theme of “Scarcity Says…but Abundance Answers.” What does it mean to live the abundant life in the burnt toast moments, the traffic jams, the carpools to school, the stock market gyrations?
On Wednesdays, I’m going to be sharing what I’ve learned in short devotions. At some point, I’d like to put it all together in a book of some sorts. So consider this a work-in-progress that you’re invited to peek at. Feedback is welcomed!
And if you haven’t had a chance to read Screwtape Letters, put it on your 2019 TBR list!