But when Paul had gathered a bundle of sticks and laid them on the fire, a viper came out because of the heat, and fastened on his hand. So when the natives saw the creature hanging from his hand, they said to one another, “No doubt this man is a murderer, whom, though he has escaped the sea, yet justice does not allow to live.” But he shook off the creature into the fire and suffered no harm. – Acts 28:3-5
When a viper fastened on Paul’s hand, others expected him to die because surely, he had done something evil for this to happen. Paul didn’t focus on them; he ignored their looks and their voices. Neither did he focus on his humanity by looking at himself. With holy boldness, he shook the viper off and suffered no harm. Hallelujah!
When we go through various trials, others may wonder if we have done something wrong and are being punished by God, but it’s the enemy who battles us when we are living for Jesus. God uses His Spirit to discipline, change, heal, and touch us. The Holy Spirit works through love, joy, peace, and gentleness. God doesn’t bring evil; He destroys its impact and brings life.
When the fire of the Holy Spirit is upon us and moves through us to touch this hurting world, the enemy will show up to hinder what we do. At that very moment, we cannot reason about the situation. When the enemy suddenly moves, we move him out of the way quickly. What is not of God will try to take control of us but cannot; we shake it off and suffer no harm, from glory to glory!