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Be self-controlled and alert. Your enemy the devil prowls around
like a roaring lion looking for someone to devour. ~ I Peter 5:8

READING: I Peter 5:5-11

When Pastor Jim and Stephanie Boyd planted their first church in San Marcos, California, they enlisted a prayer team of thirty-one people who each promised to fast and pray for their church, one for each day of the month. So on the 11th of that month, my day, I pulled out their church prayer guide and began to intercede as usual.

Suddenly, God gave me supernatural insight regarding a demonic plot afoot to sneak a deceptive man into their church who, left unchecked, would cause their church great disruption. I asked God if I should call the Boyds immediately to warn them, but was prompted to pray until the burden lifted, which I did.

It appeared to me that Leann Payne’s wonderful “Paint the Dragon Red” prayer would fit the purpose of the occasion. I prayed fervently, standing on Scripture as the Lord brought verses to mind, that God would supernaturally expose and thwart this pernicious plot.

Two weeks later, it happened that I went to their church. Stephanie took me aside and asked me to pray for them.

“Dionne, the weirdest thing happened. Recently a nice young man began attending our pre-launch Bible study. He seemed so knowledgeable – ideal leadership material. At our meeting last week he began spouting all kinds of bizarre heresy and gibberish. We were all shocked. Of course he can’t be a leader here! In fact, he left in a huff. Please pray.”

“Stephanie,” I laughed, “I already did. And what you’ve just described actually means that God has answered our prayers in a big way.” We rejoiced together when I told her what had happened, and praised God for protecting their church from harm.

Father, Help us to stay alert in prayer. Amen.

Dionne Carpenter