Are You In Agreement With The Thief?
by Dr. Timothy Hoflund
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While driving a U-Haul truck in moving to the city of our new home, I was involved in a really minor traffic accident. In fact, it was so minor that I was not even certain that the truck had clipped another vehicle!
Needless to say, I got a traffic ticket and was given a court date and so was faced with a dilemma of having to travel back to Arkansas at least once, pay fines and I wasn’t sure of what else. This really bothered me for quite some time and eventually I did the “logical” thing and contacted an attorney to discuss the matter. I was not thinking about “beating the rap” but was concerned that I might be facing some stiff penalties and “felt” like I needed some legal protection.
The attorney told me that on top of his fee ($500 to $1000) I was looking at having at least 3 court appearances, fines, court costs and oh by the way, “the prosecutor there is really big on victim restitution” so there would quite likely be a rather large payment levied against me for this as well!
So there I was, fretting about having to come up with a lot of money for an attorney and then still having to pay a lot more to the court for my “minor” accident - - all of a sudden this didn’t seem so minor to me at all!
To make matters worse, the attorney informed me that if I pled guilty, I would quite likely be facing not only the fines but a sentence of community service - - which meant having to travel back to Arkansas for some unknown period of time to perform some amount of unknown proportions of time for community service!
Well now! All of a sudden, this “minor” traffic accident had now grown to a major problem of mountain sized proportions - - and I “felt” stuck!
One evening while praying about this dilemma, the Lord plainly told me to call the court in Arkansas about this matter. Now in the face of what the attorney had told me this really did not make much sense to me, but I agreed nevertheless with what God told me and so I said “Ok, Lord, I will call the court in a few days.”
The next afternoon, in the middle of other activities, the Lord broke in on me and told me to “call the court NOW!” So I stopped everything else I was doing and right then called the court in Arkansas.
The court clerk informed me that if I chose to plead guilty and just pay for the ticket, the total cost to me would be - - $155.00!
$155.00, that’s all? What about court costs? There wouldn’t be any!
$155.00, that’s all? What about any victim restitution? There wouldn’t be any!
$155.00, and that’s all? What about having to appear in court? What about some sentence against me? What about the prosecutor wanting to have me sentenced to community service? What about …
NOPE!!! “$155 is all you will need to pay and you may do that over the phone or on line or by mail!”
Wow! When I hung up I just sat there in stunned relief, quite joyful and so grateful, but stunned all the same.
As I sat there in those moments, the Lord said something to me that just blew me away!
He said, “Tim, you were about to agree with the devil stealing from you!”
And then as if a curtain on a stage was lifted, God showed me everything I had just gone through about this matter and in every instance of my thought and actions I had just gone further and further into agreement with the devil’s plans for me!
I was just a day or so away from contracting with this attorney to represent me in this matter and if I had done so I would have sealed my own fate!
How? First I accepted and then agreed with the devil’s plan to entrap me into a situation that would have very likely cost me a couple of thousands of dollars, not to mention perhaps all the time that would have been stolen from me in trips to court, time in court, time in community service and who knows what else!
Of course, I did not see that it as a satanic trap! What I saw was this huge problem that certainly appeared needing to be dealt with!
Then I questioned in my thoughts, “how often have I experienced the devil stealing time, money, etc. from me because I had somehow agreed with his plans to do so?”!
Then I realized that this is the case for countless saints of God as well!
How does this happen? How is it that one who is truly born again falls into making an agreement with that ages-old thief, the devil?
Something happens, something goes awry, we make some mistake or blunder which puts us into some problem. Either immediately or soon after the situation arises, what we SEE is something for which human logic produces a course of action that seems necessary - - to human thinking - - but really it is the devil making a mountain out of a mole hill!
So instead of seeing what is IN TRUTH just a mole hill - - we see a mountain that doesn’t even exist! We see a demonic illusion – a mountain! So based on what we see, we agree that the problem is a mountain. Then, now that we agree with the demonic illusion - - we see the illusion as real, we react to the mountain we see that now appears to loom up against us in our path!
So what is the typical Christian reaction to “a mountain”?
We pray for God to remove the mountain we see – after all, Jesus certainly declared that God would remove a mountain from our path if we asked Him to! Jesus told us that we could “bind” and “loose” things on earth, so we commence to “binding” the problems that appear to be a mountain of difficulty against us!
But, since we are unknowingly in agreement with a demonic activity, we sense something is amiss although we cannot put our finger on it, but due to that we do something else also . . .
We conclude that if God doesn’t remove the mountain - - we then must follow some other prescribed course of action - - a logical course of action, a course of action that “common sense” and “rational thinking” convinces us to be the best course to follow and so we make a “back up” plan, just in case God doesn’t respond to our prayers and “move that mountain” as Jesus said He would!
And guess what? God doesn’t remove the mountain!!!
And why doesn’t God remove that mountain? Is it because our faith is weak? Is it because we are full of doubt? Is it because we are double minded?
NO!!! God doesn’t remove the mountain because there is no mountain to remove! It is only just a mole hill! Remember?
While we pray for God to remove the mountain, God tells us to simply “step over it”! Now that just doesn’t make any sense to us. In fact, most often when we – or IF we hear that kind of response from God, we conclude that that wasn’t God speaking to us at all! We may even go so far as to “rebuke the devil” for lying to us and interfering with our prayers! The truth is: The devil HAS interfered with our prayers but not in the way that we are thinking! So what happens? NOTHING!
Of course God tries to reveal this truth to us but we have already agreed with the devil that there is this big mountain opposing us! So when we hear God say that “there is no real problem to deal with” we can no longer acknowledge what God is telling us because our agreement with the devil that there IS a problem to deal with – clouds our vision, hinders our hearing, disrupts our understanding and blocks our ability to receive from God the genuine answer to the actual problem!
As a result we give up our time, our energies, our emotional reserves, our brain space and finally our monies and freedoms - - all to fight a battle that should not have existed in the first place!
But, because we agreed with the devil’s illusion that there is a battle to fight, we fight! We go to battle expending (which means letting the enemy steal) our resources and worse yet, we wonder why God has allowed this to happen to us in the first place! We wonder why God didn’t “move that mountain”! We prayed according to God’s Word! We even found two or three that would agree with us in that prayer! We “bound” it on earth but it didn’t get “bound in heaven”!
So then we fall back to praying for God to give us strength to endure the difficulties of that mountain … and we go right on suffering! We suffer for however long it takes for us to get through the ordeal and then, when we finally do get through the ordeal we dutifully declare our praise and thanksgiving to God for being faithful to see us through!
Only He never intended for us to “go through” the ordeal in the first place! Remember? There was no mountain it was only a mole hill! It was a mole hill that satan convinced us was a great big mountain – and we agreed with what the devil showed us!!!!
Now I know that this is something which God’s people will not enjoy admitting.
Well, hey, I know that I certainly did not enjoy admitting this at all! (But I knew it was the Holy Spirit showing me and telling me about this, so admit it I did!)
In fact, our pride will cause us to resist admitting it at all! Our religious egos will rise up and declare that there is no way that we would ever agree with the devil! After all, we are spiritually minded! We have the Holy Spirit! We are able to discern good and evil! Why the very thought that this preacher would accuse ME of agreement with the devil - - he must be out of his mind! HOW DARE HE SUGGEST SUCH A THING!
But freedom comes from knowing God’s Truth!
And the truth we desperately need to know is that not every “problem” is as major, or as severe, or as critical or as awful or as desperate as it appears to be! Granted, some indeed are. But the dimension of the problem is not the issue.
THIS is the issue: We need to make certain that we are in agreement with our Heavenly Father and what He sees and what He says about the problem!
Before we react or respond to any problem that appears, we need to discern whether or not there is a real mountain to deal with or is it a little mound of dirt that the devil is trying to convince us is a mountain?
I am convinced that many times we rebuke a mountain that is only an illusion! An empty hologram appearing to be the actual reality!
Now if we have agreed with the illusion – if we accept the illusion as reality - - then we are rebuking something that does not really exist and therefore it will not be removed!
Thus, we get stuck by a problem simply because we have agreed with the deceiver and not believed the God of Truth!
Now of course this is not our intention by any stretch of the imagination - - we are deceived into making this agreement in the same way a vulnerable elderly person agrees to give some hugs amount of money to a criminal confidence scheme! The victim is convinced to believe something that does not exist or is different from reality and they are deceived into making an agreement to buy that ocean front property in New Mexico!
All too often what happens is that we are on guard against the intimidating thief that breaks in by force - - only to be beguiled by the soft spoken con artist that persuades us to agree with a deception that “makes sense” to our human logic!
The Scripture comes to mind “Prove ALL things!”
1 Thessalonians 5:18-21
“In everything give thanks: for this is the will of God in Christ Jesus concerning you.
Quench not the Spirit …
Prove all things; hold fast that which is good.”
Do we prove all of our circumstances and every situation; do we stop to prove each of our issues, problems and dilemmas? All too often we just accept them at face value when they may be nothing more than a counterfeit or an illusion!
And if we do, in deed, agree with an illusion treating it as reality, responding to that false appearance, whether we want to admit it or not, whether we like it or not, if we do this then we have just made an agreement with the thief! We are in agreement with the thief rather than with God!
We must remember that God deals in TRUTH, He deals in (and with) what is REAL! When we agree that something that is in reality false; when we accept deception as genuine then the question is this: Which is it that God must deal with - - the problem that has come against us … or does He have to deal with US?
If we pray for God to remove something that does not exist, do you think He will pretend to answer our prayers? He cannot!
For God cannot lie and to pretend to deal with something that does not exist would in fact be a lie!
- - Can God heal us if we are not ill or sick or diseased?
- - Can God pay a debt that does not exist?
- - Can God avenge a wrong that has not been committed?
- - Can God move a mountain that is not there?
What is it that God can do?
This leads to the real question which is: “What do we need, what do we desperately need God to do for us?”
DELIVER US! Deliver us from the deception, from the illusion, that we have accepted as real! Set us free from the agreement we made with the thief as to what actions to take!
And what is it that sets us free – delivers us? Truth! (See: John 8:31-32)
God can open our eyes to the TRUTH OF OUR REALITY!
- - God can show us a mole hill where we believe a mountain exists!
- - God can show us a little stream where we believe a flood exists!
- - God can show us a solution where we believe only desperation exists!
- - God can show us freedom where we believe only bondage exists!
- - God can show us health where we believe illness exists!
- - God can reveal a mountain where we believe that only a mole hill exists!
- - - - The devil is ALWAYS working to deceive us - - so
sometimes satan tries to deceive us with the illusion
that there is no problem or a very small problem to deal
with, when in reality our very existence is being
Here is just a minor example of the devil trying to convince us of an illusion and the correct response with results:
- - We are looking for our car keys: Immediately satan throws up the illusion that “your keys are LOST”!
You spend hours looking for the car keys and don’t find them anywhere – the longer you look the more you believe the illusion that they are lost and you begin to think about all the negative consequences that result from having lost your car keys; you begin to think how much it will cost to replace those keys and on and on it goes.
FINALLY you think to ask God to help you find the car keys and so you pray “Heavenly Father, please show me where my car keys are” and all of a sudden you spy the keys sitting in the middle of the dining room table, under the center piece flower arrangement!
The car keys were there all along and IF you had asked God to open your eyes and to direct you to where they were to begin with, the devil’s illusion would have had very little effect – if any at all – upon how you behaved!
The point of this is: WE NEED TO SEE THE TRUTH OF REALITY - - WE NEED TO SEE WHAT GOD SEES!
When we do, when we see what God sees, THEN WE ARE ABLE TO AGREE WITH GOD AND NOT THE THIEF!
And it is only when we agree with God about any situation that we see God move in our behalf, in our favor, as our strength and our defender! It is THEN that we see God intervene as our Provider, Protector, Promise Keeper and Peace Maker!
When we agree with God about any situation as it truly is, THEN WE SEE GOD BEING GOD AND GOD BEING OUR ABBA!
So I implore you! The next time and every time you are faced with a challenge, a situation, an issue or problem - - whether it appears to be a mountain or a mole hill, or even an ant hill - - STOP!
Before you do anything else, before you pray anything else, ask God to show you the reality of the situation!
Ask God TO SHOW YOU WHAT HE SEES, AS HE SEES IT! By His Spirit and by His Word, PROVE ALL THINGS!
By doing this you will go a very long way in avoiding making an agreement with the thief!
By doing this – about all situations and issues – you will begin to experience a life that is free from fear! (Remember that old acrostic? F-alse E-vidence A-ppearing R-eal !!!)
By doing this you will begin living in a dimension of God’s peace as perhaps you have never before lived!
By doing this you will live in a greater level of spiritual success and victory than you may have realized was even possible!
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