Second Corinthians 4:18 says, “While we look not at the things which are seen, but at the things which are not seen: for the things which are seen are temporal; but the things which are not seen are eternal.”

In this passage, Paul was saying that there are going to be things that we see with our natural eyes—adverse circumstances, affliction, opposition, etc.—but it’s important that when we do see these things, we keep them in the right perspective. We must look at things in light of eternity through the eyes of our spirit.

I remember when my children were young, and we would take them to have their picture taken. We would get them dressed and have them looking perfect, then set them in position, and it seemed like as soon as we did, they would never cooperate. They would cry, pitch a fit, and do everything but cooperate with the task at hand. But while they were crying the photographer would pull out a squeaky toy, hold it up above him, and squeak it suddenly, distracting them with it so he could snap the shot.

The devil often operates that same way. The Bible says he is the father of lies. He is a master at deception, and oftentimes, when a situation is going on in our lives, he will pull out some sort of “squeaky toy” and squeak it a few times to get us distracted and get our eyes off of the eternal or spiritual realm and on the physical or natural realm.

According to James 1, we will have opportunities to face undesirable circumstances and situations in this lifetime. So many times, if we are not careful, what happens is that we see an attack and take it at face value. It feels like a personal attack so that is how we perceive it and receive it. But we must keep in mind that when there is an attack, there is always an underlying reason for it. And this is what Paul was talking about, “While we look not at the things which are seen but at the things which are not seen…” Things are never what they appear to be with our natural eyes. We must see things through the eyes of our spirit.

In Mark 4, Jesus is teaching about the sower and the different kinds of ground the seed is sown into, and He makes a powerful statement in verse 17, “…for the Word’s sake”

When Jesus said that, He gave us a key to understanding what is at stake every time an attack comes, and it’s important that we never lose sight of this. It is a foundational truth that we must build into who we are so that we don’t get caught up in seeing things in a natural way. When we do, it is just like the devil squeaking a toy and getting us distracted, thinking an attack is a personal matter, when in reality, in the realm of the Spirit, it’s all about the Word.

In Mark 4 Jesus demonstrates the different kinds of ground that the Word is sown into, and He talks about types of attacks that arise. He mentioned affliction, persecution, cares of this world, deceitfulness of riches, and lusts of other things. I believe that we can fit every attack we may face into one of these categories. Learn to recognize that when situations arise, that it’s not a personal matter. There is something much deeper and underlying that you cannot see at that moment with your natural eyes. It’s all about the Word and Satan getting that Word uprooted.

Satan knows that if he can steal the Word that has been sown into your heart, then he has accomplished his mission in causing you to be unfruitful in your effectiveness for the kingdom of God. And this is exactly why he is after the Word in your heart. He wants free course for the kingdom of darkness, and he wants God’s work shut down and eliminated.

As a child of God, I want to encourage you to be sensitive to what is really going on around you. When opportunities arise, learn to recognize what is really at stake— the Word. The more you exercise this practice, the easier it will be to look at the things which are not seen, and that is where true victory is. Glory to God!

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