When your heart belongs wholly to Christ, and you strive to walk by that heart of faith, you will inevitably encounter resistance from a sinful world. We must always keep before us that our real enemy is Satan and his demons. It is grammatically appropriate in English to capitalize that as a title: our Enemy. He’s the only enemy that really matters. Our difficulty in this life is chiefly humans who serve his purposes, knowingly or not (Ephesians 6:10-20).
We would prefer people to repent from serving our Enemy’s purposes, and to escape his dominance in their lives. That’s our hope, even as we keep in the mind the warning of our Lord that most people will not repent. Indeed, we should be quite happy just to get them off our backs, most of the time. There is that sense of dominion from God that says: As long as they aren’t hindering my mission, they aren’t my problem. The majority of those we encounter in this life will remain a part of the broader background of fallen humanity. Significant they are while we share space with them, and worthy of tearful prayers for redemption, but we know to let God decide something He didn’t put into our hands.
Repentance is required for redemption, and repentance itself is a divine miracle. We have to prepare our minds to understand that most will pass in and out of our lives with neither repentance nor redemption. Further, we know that a great many folks we encounter are somewhere between initial repentance and a deeper understanding of heart-led submission to the Spirit, such that they may need repentance from of lot of things still keeping them tied to Satan’s schemes. These people merit a special effort, because we are obliged to presume they are family already, but still struggling to find their place and not at peace. Such are we all in one way or another.
You can read the rest of this message here at Kiln of the Soul blog.