Catchy title, eh?
To be honest, I don’t know what the Devil’s greatest trick is, but I can give a pretty solid guess.
It’s to keep churches and pastors and church workers really, really busy.
I know the Master of Lies uses great tricks like jealousy, rivalry, slander, meaninglessness, anger, and hopelessness.
But lately I’ve been thinking: If I was the Devil (no, I don’t want to be Satan), I would quietly trick churches into thinking subtle thoughts that the more you do, the more you are doing God’s work.
If we obsess more about systems than prayer, victory!
If we work harder on spreadsheets than our hearts, victory!
If we fill our schedules week in and week out without a real rest and Sabbath, victory!
If I brag about how many nights I’m away from home, victory!
If we brag about how many ministries we are a part of or our church has, victory!
If we spend 8 hours a day in meetings talking about the floor plans of a new student center, victory!
If we can’t seem to find joy because we are just too focused, intense, or busy, victory!
You get the point. Satan comes in many forms, I believe, but it’s the subtlelty, the whispering lies that seem so righteous and appealing and awesome — and only keep us busy – those scare me.
Instead of busyness, let’s focus our attention – as churches, pastors, youth leaders, and men/women of God – on seeking the heart of the Holy One and becoming more holy. More peace-filled. More patient. More kind. More gentle. More loving. More humble.
Not more busy.
It’s a great trick, but it’s a lie.