Satan wants to sift you: How to stay rooted in faith despite adversity
Editor’s Note: This devotion is taken from a blog series written by EEW Magazine Founder, Dianna Hobbs. For more inspiration, visit her Daily Cup of Inspiration blog.
I felt so sad to hear that she was walking away from God. I had talked to her, prayed for her and encouraged her as much as I could. But she finally broke down and told me, “I feel like God has disappointed me. I trusted Him for a long time and He didn’t come through for me. I can’t do this anymore.”
That was a few years ago.
Recently, the same young woman reached out to me. She told me her frustration had caused her to make some bad choices in the beginning. But now, she has given her life back to God after learning the hard way that abandoning her faith wasn’t the answer.
“I learned that my worst day with God is better than my best day without Him,” she said. “I found no joy, peace or satisfaction outside of His presence.”
When I learned of her return, my soul rejoiced—and yet rejoices!
Satan thought he had won, but he is defeated. Though the enemy momentarily triumphed in that battle, he did not ultimately win the war. His desire was to see her lost for good. The adversary exploited her hurt, disappointment and discontentment. He manipulated her into thinking God was against her rather than for her. For a season, it worked.
She was full of resentment, bitterness and sadness. Depression took over. Her faith took a major hit and she lost her grip. This is what Satan, the chief manipulator, wants to see happen to you. Our adversary loves to use adversity to accuse God of failing us.
But God never fails. He doesn’t always do things the way we want Him to, nor does God honor our preferred timetable. Nevertheless, there is no failure in Him. He does things His way, which is always the best way. We just have to learn how to trust Him through the storm, wait for His timing and believe that in the end, He will cause it all to work for our good.
If you’re going through something frustrating and difficult today, this message is especially for you: Satan wants to use whatever he can to destroy your faith. Don’t let him do it.
In Luke 22:31-32, Jesus said to His disciple Simon Peter, “Simon, Simon, Satan has asked to sift you as wheat. But I have prayed for you, Simon, that your faith may not fail…”
In this passage of scripture, the word "you" is plural in the Greek language. That’s important to note, because Jesus was telling Simon Peter that Satan asked permission to come after all the disciples—not just him. The enemy wanted to sift all followers of Jesus as wheat.
Naturally speaking, in order to separate wheat from its kernels and other debris, it requires lots of shaking.
So the enemy hoped he could shake up the disciples so much that he would destroy their faith and confidence in the Lord. But Jesus told Simon Peter He had already prayed that the disciples’ faith would not fail.
That prayer of intercession applies to me and you today.
The enemy’s desire remains to sift you and me as wheat. He’ll do whatever he can to separate you from your faith. He hopes to permanently damage you and make you walk away from God. Anything he can do to undermine your trust in Christ, he will do it. He’ll employ whatever methods and tactics he can to uproot you from your foundation of faith.
In light of that fact, aren’t you grateful that Jesus has already advocated for you so your faith won’t fail?
In this very moment, you may be going through a sifting season, where the devil is doing all he can to shake you up and separate you from your faith. Despite his best efforts, dig your heels in and fight back. Stand on the promises of God. Declare that God’s word is true. Let the enemy know that he can shake the circumstances around you, but he can never shake the faith that’s within you.
Stay rooted and be assured that the Lord is going to bring you out of this situation with a testimony of victory. That’s why He’s sending this cup of inspiration your way: so you won’t quit on the journey to breakthrough. While you’re waiting for deliverance, lean on Him. He is your refuge. Run to Him.
Whatever burdens you may be carrying, situations you may be facing and storms you may be trying to get through, go to Christ your Rock. He is your defense. He is the anchor of your soul. Cling to Him and don’t let go.
Stay rooted in Him.
As long as you hold fast to His hand, Satan may shake you up, but you will yet remain firmly planted. Your roots, buried deep within the soil of God’s word, will not be moved. When you’re rooted, you are yet blessed in hard times, favored in unfavorable circumstances and you will yield fruit even in times of famine!
I’m stirring Jeremiah 17:7-8 NIV into your cup of inspiration, which says, “Blessed is the man who trusts in the LORD And whose trust is the LORD. They will be like a tree planted by the water that sends out its roots by the stream. It does not fear when heat comes; its leaves are always green. It has no worries in a year of drought and never fails to bear fruit."
As you drink down the contents of your cup, be encouraged. The word of the Lord says you are blessed, as long as you trust in God. The enemy’s attack is no match for a believer whose faith is founded upon Christ, the Rock.
When the storm rages and the enemy forcefully opposes you, remind yourself of 1 John 4:4 NIV: “…the one who is in you is greater than the one who is in the world.”
Now let’s pray.
God, I have been confronting some hard situations and I know that the enemy is trying to shake my faith. Despite what’s going on, I trust You. I know You have me in the palm of Your hand. Though I cannot see my way out right now, I look forward with eyes of faith, expecting that You will come through for me. Thank You in advance! In Jesus’ name, Amen.
About the Writer
Dianna Hobbs is the award-winning founder of Empowering Everyday Women Online Magazine, a Top 100 blogger and podcaster whose mission is to inspire women around the world to walk in the fullness of who they are divinely called to be.