There’s a lot of different strategies that the enemy uses to get us off track in our walk with God. But I think one of the enemy’s greatest tactics is a sequence I call, yesterday, today, and tomorrow.
Here’s how it works. The enemy gets you to think about your past, present, and future in these three ways:
Yesterday – Remember when.
Today – Live for now.
Tomorrow – Do it later.
The enemy wants to keep us stuck in yesterday. And so the way the he talks to us is by saying, “remember when.” In other words, the enemy comes to you and tries to get you stuck in yesterday’s memories. Dependent on yesterday’s successes. Reminded of yesterday’s failures.
Or the enemy will get you stuck in today. He’ll tell you: “live for now.” It’s all about present pleasure and satisfaction. Like Esau from the Old Testament, the enemy will get you to sell your birthright for a bowl of beans. Trade something far better later for something inferior now. Maybe it’s by having sex before marriage. Or selling out on your God-given dream because there’s an easier path you can take right now.
And then there’s tomorrow. The enemy will tell you to live for now, but when it comes to the great things God wants you to do, he urges you to “do it later.” Delay your obedience.
If you’re not careful, you can easily fall prey to this yesterday, today, and tomorrow sequence. And your growth in God and what He has for you will be paralyzed.
Here’s how I think God wants to flip the script and have you look at it from an eternal perspective:
Yesterday – Remember who.
Today – Live for later.
Tomorrow – Do it now.
Whereas the enemy says “remember when” about your past, God says, “remember who.” Don’t stay stuck in yesterday’s success. Instead look at yesterday’s success and remember the God who gave you yesterday’s success. Or who can help you overcome yesterday’s failure. Take King David’s cue from scripture and recall God’s past faithfulness so you can forge on into your future endeavors.
For the last two elements of the sequence, rearrange the enemy’s thinking. Where the enemy says “live for now, do it later,” God’s says “live for later, do it now.” Instead of living for the moment that you can see and the pleasures that you can touch, live in the present with a visionary mindset about your choices, realizing that your present bad decisions affect your future possibilities.
And instead of deferring obedience, obey now. Don’t live in the land of lofty aspirations. Whatever God tells you to do, do it. Immediately.
Refuse to look at yesterday, today, and tomorrow from the enemy’s perspective. As often as you have to, tell yourself:
Remember who (not when). Live for later (not now). Do it now (not later).
Right memory. Visionary mindset. Immediate obedience.
Yesterday. Today. And tomorrow.
Adapted from Steven Furtick