17 Sections

Decoy to the real thing



Chapter: 5.11
(Section 5: Finding the Elusive Will of God)
Copyright Michael Bronson 1997, 1999, and 2000

Decoys are used to misdirect someone from finding the real thing. Satan often uses decoys in our lives to misdirect us from finding God real will for our lives.

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"It’s right over there," the Lieutenant said. "According to the snitch kite, the drugs should be buried underneath those steps." A snitch kite is an anonymous note that a prisoner sends to the warden when he is concerned about something. In this situation, a prisoner had told staff where drugs could be found.

After moving away a couple of stones, the officer said, "I’ve found something. It’s a sandwich bag full of packets." Upon reviewing the contents, they found an assortment of cocaine, marijuana, and heroin.

Unknown to the officers, they had just been duped. Although the snitch kite was legitimate, their lack of thoroughness caused them to miss the real stash of drugs. The large bag of drugs was buried about 6 inches deeper than the small bag of drugs. Prisoners often use decoys to protect their stash. If someone happens to get tipped off about the drugs, they’ll usually stop digging once they find something.

Satan often uses decoys to throw us off track. When we are seeking God’s will for our lives, Satan will throw us something "good" as a decoy. It is his hope that we will think we have found what we have been looking for and stop searching. My chapter God’s Work Verses God’s Will talks about how we can be actively involved in Christian service and still not be in God’s will. It is important to carefully seek God’s will for our lives. If you think you have found His will for your life, ask Him to provide you the inner peace and assurance that this leading is from Him.

The dangerous thing about these decoys is the fact they are so believable. They usually incorporate scenarios that are very plausible and possible. Unfortunately, the results of these deceptions can be devastating.

The emergency siren penetrates the air as the officers begin to lock down the institution. Two prisoners are missing and believed to have escaped. Staff thoroughly search the prison, but are unable to find the prisoners. While searching their cells, several valuable clues are found. Buried in one of the prisoner’s trashcan, staff finds pieces of lost staff I.D. cards and a razor blade. The two prisoners probably walked out the front gate with forged I.D. cards.

About a week after the escape, staff caught some prisoners smuggling food into a factory (inside the prison). This, in turn, led the staff to the missing prisoners. Inside the factory were very large bundles of new flattened boxes. (These boxes are used to ship furniture manufactured at their factory.) The prisoners had carved out the center of these large bundles and were living in there. Since staff thought the bundles were solid, they didn’t bother searching them.

There are two major hurdles involved in escaping from a prison. The first, of course, is breaching the actual security perimeter. The second is avoiding capture once you’re on the outside. Roadblocks and heightened awareness makes movement outside the prison very difficult. If an escapee can elude the authorities the first couple of weeks, his chances of getting captured are greatly reduced. After a couple weeks, there are no roadblocks or manhunts.

The two prisoners had this in mind when they planned their escape. They faked their escape to produce a massive manhunt outside the prison. After the authorities had concluded that the escapees had made it to a distant state (probably about two weeks later), the prisoners would make their real escape. They would wait for a foggy night and slip over the wall. Since all of the prisoners are locked up at night, they were hoping that an activated fence alarm would not be investigated as carefully.

This situation demonstrates how easy it is to mislead someone with a believable story. If Satan is going to throw a decoy your way, it will probably be something that looks like it came from God. This is why it can be dangerous to use circumstances as an indication of God’s leading. Don’t automatically assume that things "falling together" means God is leading you in that direction.

Be careful not to put too much emphasis on circumstances in determining God’s will. Not all remarkable circumstances or "coincidences" are signs from God. Spectacular coincidences may just be that, spectacular coincidences.

Jan Baalsrud, along with three other English soldiers, was on a sabotage mission in Norway during WWII. Their mission was to destroy a German blockade. Their contact in Norway was the owner of a small general store. Unknown to Jan, the store’s owner had died and a new person had taken over. By "coincidence," the new owner had the exact same name as the previous owner, although he was not related.

By confiding their top-secret plans to the surprised, but unpatriotic merchant, the unsuspecting commandos compromised their entire mission. Three of the men were quickly picked up, tortured, and murdered. The fourth escaped. Jan swam from island to island through the freezing Arctic Ocean. Eventually he made his way to freedom in Sweden. (SOURCE: We Die Alone, Ace Books) Circumstances can be a sign from God, but be careful not to read too much into them.

It is important to seek God’s leading and guidance, even when it appears obvious what you are to do next. There is a great example of this in 1 King 13:1-32. Here, the Lord sent a "man of God" to Bethel to deal with the wayward King Jeroboam. After he completed his mission and Jeroboam repented, he started heading back to Judah. King Jeroboam asked the man of God to come over for a meal. He also wanted to give him a gift. The man of God told King Jeroboam that God had told him, "You must not eat bread or drink water or return from the way you came." Being obedient to God’s command, he left immediately and started home by another route.

There was an "old prophet" in Bethel who was intrigued by this man of God and wanted to meet him. After finding the man of God, the old prophet asked him to come to his house to eat. The man of God explained why he couldn’t. The old prophet said that he too was a prophet and lied by saying, "An angel said to me by the Word of the Lord: Bring him back with you to your house so he may eat bread and drink water.’ "

Unfortunately, the man of God assumed the old prophet was telling the truth and returned with him. While they were eating, God sent a message to the old prophet. The old prophet cried out and told the man of God that he had defied the Word of God by not obeying God’s instruction and will die because of it. After the man of God left, he was attacked and killed by a lion.

Obviously, the man of God should have been faithful to God’s instructions. The fact he turned down a meal and a gift from King Jeroboam showed that he wanted to be obedient. Chances are, he thought God was giving him an updated instruction through the old prophet.

The man of God was careless by assuming the old prophet had an update from the Lord. An instruction given directly from God takes priority over anything else. If he felt there was a possibility that God was speaking through the old prophet, he still should have asked God for guidance and wisdom. He should have asked God to provide him peace and assurance that this new instruction is what He wanted for him.

Satan is the master of illusions. One of his best illusions is convincing us to cherish this present life more than our eternal life. Our present life often takes on more value than it should in comparison to eternity. If we truly understood what Heaven is like, we would be willing to relinquish this life immediately. Unfortunately, most of us are deluded into thinking this life is better than what it really is. My parent’s car is a good example of how we are blinded to our present condition.

My parents are retired and the old car they were driving was becoming very unreliable. Since my Buick was very reliable, I offered to sell it to them at a greatly reduced price (or even free, if necessary). To my surprise my dad was not interested. He said, "My car is in good condition and is reliable. I appreciate the offer, but I am not interested."

About a week later my Dad wrote me saying, "I was out looking at my car today and I suddenly realized it is old and falling apart. It has trouble starting and is not reliable on the highway. I don’t know what I was thinking, but if the offer for the other car is still open, I would like to pursue it."

We may have difficulty understanding how my dad did not immediately recognize the need for a newer car. Yet, we often do the same thing when we hang on so tightly to this life and to our worldly possession. In comparison to what God has offered us in Heaven, we are crazy to value our earthly possessions so much.


Other Chapters in this Section

God's "Will" vs. God's "Work"
The Lord's Leading
The Many Faces of Motivation
Finding the Elusive Will of God
Six Steps in Finding God's Will
Stories of Great Christians
Time Line of Great Christians
God's Invisible Hand
The Answer Might be found in the Darkness
A Death of a Vision
He Only Asks for Obedience
Decoy to the Real Thing
God Working Behind the Scenes

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