The Devil tries to bring fear into our lives through dissatisfaction.
He uses dissatisfaction to introduce fear into our lives by convincing us we’re missing out on something we deserve to have. The devil tells us that other people are enjoying something that was meant for us. He makes us think that because we don’t have what other people have we are less than they are.
In fact that was his strategy when he tempted Eve in the Garden of Eden.
“One day the snake said to the woman, “Did God really say that you must not eat fruit from any tree in the garden?” The woman answered the snake, “We may eat fruit from the trees in the garden. But God told us, ‘You must not eat fruit from the tree that is in the middle of the garden. You must not even touch it, or you will die.’” But the snake said to the woman, “You will not die. God knows that if you eat the fruit from that tree, you will learn about good and evil and you will be like God!” (Genesis 3:1-5 NCV).
The snake (Satan) twisted the words of God to make Eve think that God was holding something back. He tells her that God hasn’t given her the whole truth and that her life would actually improve by stepping out of the will of God.
Satan does the same thing to us every day.
He tries to make us believe that our life doesn’t quite measure up. Satan tries to convince us that we are less than sufficient, and that what our heavenly Father has provided isn’t enough.
This isn’t the kind of fear that brings nightmares and cold sweats. It’s the kind that breeds a subtle dissatisfaction with our lives.
This dissatisfaction will cause us to question everything we have: Our house, our salary, our friendships, our parenting, our marriages, etc.
We should absolutely desire to improve in all these areas, but fear and discontentment will never bring growth.
Instead of growing, we will diminish. We will become angry, closed off or overly competitive. We will begin to think the reason that we don’t have enough is because we aren’t enough. These emotions can drive us to do unreasonable things and the whole time the force behind our negative emotions is fear.
If you were to ask an adulterer why he had an affair it’s not likely he would answer, “Because I was afraid.” When you ask someone who was recently fired why she lost their job she wouldn’t say, “Because I was afraid.” If you ask someone who has no friends why he pushes people away he wouldn’t tell you, “Because I am afraid.” These people would give you a litany of other reasons: They were unhappy in their marriage; They didn’t get along with their coworkers; Other people don’t understand them.
The real reason is fear.
They are afraid somebody is using them, lying to them or has something they believe they should have. They’ve fallen into the same trap as Eve. They’ve allowed fear to stop them from seeing the blessing of God in their lives.
That’s really what Eve missed. The Devil told her she was going to be like God and she forgot that she was already made in His perfect image.
We can fight off this fear-driven dissatisfaction by knowing that we are the righteousness of God in Christ. The feeling of not having enough is destroyed by knowing that we are enough in Christ. We are made in the image of God the same way Adam and Eve were.
We need to remind ourselves of 2 Peter 1:3, “Seeing that His divine power has granted to us everything pertaining to life and godliness, through the true knowledge of Him who called us by His own glory and excellence.”
Let’s not fall into the trap of thinking that we are always missing out on something. God has already blessed us and will continue to do so. We only have to rest in the finished work of Jesus Christ.