The blog is an extract from a message written when I was working in the Corporate world.
Feeding & Fruit
Like Songs of Solomon forewarns us, there are foxes trying to slyly uproot your vine because see the tender grapes that are already in the process on their way to bear good fruit. By your fruit your will know them right? We have been called to bear fruit because fruit feeds people, it nourishes, and it’s our 5 a day. However, the devil thrives in a state of spiritual famine and tries to allow us to deprive others of feasting on our good fruit when faced with testing circumstances. But like the process of making olive tree that sees the olive tree goes through a test of endurance, when we go through the shaking, beating and pressing, we must endure the process fixing our mind on the final produce. The olive fruit is then used to produce an oil flow of olive oil. In Leviticus 24:2, the children of Israel were commanded to use olive oil which would cause their lamps to burn continuously. We have been planted in our workplaces to be like a strong olive trees. We need to go through the shaking in order to release the olive fruit from our trees and to feed the hungry in the immediate proximity. But that’s not all! From those olive, some of the fruit will have to endure the beating and pressing to become oil. Oil is used in the bible to remind us of overflow, to remind us that there is no limit to the reach of where it not only can be poured out but received. If your olive fruit only has enough reach to feed your immediate team, it will be your olive oil that will flood the whole floor with the presence of Jesus in your workplace.
This is why I feel so pressed to remind you that in this season, we must be vigilant of the fruit what we produce and what we are feeding people in the workplace. What you feed will continue to grow, let’s be sure that we are feeding people from the plate of good fruit. Feeding them on a diet of Jesus and with a meal that truly will keep hunger locked up till lunch. Likewise, what you starve you allow to die, so let’s be conscious that we are starving the right things. Such things that block us from walking on the path of righteousness and stop us fulfilling our purpose at work. Let us not starve the good things. God forbid we produce bad fruit and feed others with it.
I was meditating on the scripture and was thinking to myself, why foxes? Throughout the bible, different animals are used in a bid to emphasis the different characteristics of a person, a nation, a type of blessings or a type of behaviour. So having a brisk think some of the other animals mentioned in the bible came to mind. Dogs – often spoken with a tone of contempt or loathing. Camels – swift, regal, enduring. Lion – fierce, strong, ferocious and full of dignity. Although, the lion is interesting because in the case of the tribe of Judah and Jesus this had positive connotations; regarding the devil on the prowl this animal was used to illustrate the negative nature of the adversity. We get to foxes and they are very insidious, sly, wild.
This is why the devil sends foxes to pluck at your root. Foxes are crafty and like they do with bins and filth, they intend to drag you to a corner and devour. They come out when no one else is around and when you appear like easy picking. People aka destiny assassins come into your situations like foxes. This is why I look at my situation and the people involved in them like I do a fox. Not with an awwwww-factor like dogs or cats who are welcomed into the home but as dirty, sneaky foxes shunned outside to eat garbage in the dead of the midnight, unable to fellowship with humans like household pets. Next time that person from work is on your case, just look at them as a fox! (Also pray for them o! People are the face behind the spirit)
Another thing I soon realised was that despite being shunned away struggling to survive why does a fox go back to the same place? Because they identify the place is a source of food, like I said earlier what you feed will continue to grow. This is the same in our personal lives and even with attacks, people disguised as foxes only come back to because they feast and rummage on the scraps you leave out for them. When standing and taking things up in any type of spiritual warfare, be CAREFUL how you dispose of your rubbish. If you don’t put it to rest probably and you leave a crumb – remember that even the smallest fox can turn that crumb into a meal and will feast on you and consume that situation till they are satisfied. The bible warns us in Matthew 12:43-45 that if you cast out a demon, if the place/person is now left unoccupied the demon goes to call 7 more of its friends to re-inhabit. Many of us are seeing the manifestation of the seeds of problems/attacks at work that we helped not only to sow but to water. We’ve fed the problem and given the attacker power over us and then complain that we do not understand why we face the intensity of the problems we face. Right now, ask God to reveal the things you’ve given the devil and allowed him to attack you with in your place of work. Don’t be caught unaware. Dispose of your scraps properly. Don’t give the devil a foothold to feast on something lest he brings back 7 more problems.
Foxes or illusion
So as this mediation went further, I then caught the revelation that we need to use our discerning eyes to determine whether we are dealing with an actual fox or just the illusion of one. Some people are sent in with a direct spiritual mission to cause you to jump ship and abort your purpose in a place, make no bones about it. But others are sent as illusionary foxes. They are a mere illusion of the power of the enemy over us.
Foxes are an illusion of power using the catalyst you have left out for them to feast on. If you are someone that has a joyful spirit the fox will come in to try and steal you joy. And if you let him do it, he’ll try to take away your peace over a situation. But when you catch the revelation that joy is not a manufactured emotion that comes from our body’s natural default setting, but rather a fruit of the spirit you realise the devil cant steal your joy. Happiness perhaps but not your joy. Joy is an overwhelming spiritual download from heaven that can’t be robbed. So there’s no such things as stealing joy, you can’t steal from heaven! But the enemy can play you against yourself and allow you to believe he has taken your joy, peace or hope over a situation. Pastor Sheryl Brady dropped an awesome bombs when I was watching her preach online and said that “a peacemaker is someone who declares war on whatever disturbs their peace”. I had to take that in for more than a second! This is why we must always keep our spiritual eyes open and learn to fight from our place of purpose. The devil will play tricks on you and I’m talking smokes and mirrors because satan desires to sift us, so these foxes will create the illusion that they can uproot us and if you exchange your truth of God for a lie of the devil, you entertain the spirit of fear and defeatism and give over your power to them. That’s the one thing we can’t speak over ourselves, Jesus didn’t die to give us defeat but strength and victory.
Foxes, Vines & Branches
In John 15, Jesus said that He is the vine and we are the branches. So when we think about it, as long as we play our part, these foxes cannot dig up our vines if we remain connected to Jesus. And this is the point of it all (long winded right, but insightful I hope). When being called to stand in the workplace, you need to have that unshakable, undeniable, unbreakable revelation and personal understanding of who Jesus is to you. In verse 5 Jesus says that ‘if you remain in Me’ (John 15), take note of IF. This shows us that nothing is guaranteed and it is possible to be disconnected especially when we play a conscious part in doing so. When God sends you to a dark place, never forget that He is the vine and our solid rock, and as long as we decide to stay rooted in Him and keep our branches strong we won’t fall away. This is an action on our part to trust and hold onto Him. If we allow the devil to think he can dig at our vine and give over that power, we allow him to cut off our life supply and consequently our branches die (John 15:6). That is when our branches fall off and fall to the ground, unfortunately we find ourselves separated from the Vine and vulnerable in those cold streets! It is then you feel like you Jesus isn’t holding you down, yet in reality your branch was eventually weakened due to malnourishment when you went through the process of being separated from the vine. That’s when the devil swoops in, just as your vine is on the brink of breaking. Yet even still, Jesus is still the vine stretching out His arm to hold onto our branches, it’s us that lets go and falls away from the branch. It’s a choice, on Calvary Jesus stretched out His arms and in doing so He reached out to us embracing us with an everlasting hug, drawing all men to Him. His default position is with an outstretched arm. He doesn’t let us go, it’s us that lets Him go.
So like a small child would do, the next time you see the enemy sending a fox your way. Stretch out your arms to Jesus to stay firmly rooted in the vine, so He may water and strengthen your branch. In some places of the world, discipline is often deliver through the medium of a tree branch. Children are even sent out to choose the branch they’ll be punished with. Tactically children often pick the lightest or thinnest branch because they understand that its impact and wrath will be less painful than a thicker branch. Now imagine the devil is doing the same when he sends his foxes. If he sees you as a weaker branch, unable to make a strong impact in the world or Kingdom of God, he selects you and breaks you off from the vine but the stronger branches, robust in nature and powerful in impact are harder to break off the tree/vine. They’re like those branches you have to pull, twist and even step on to separate from the defiantly strong trunk. They are grounded and rooted in the Vine and can end up being more trouble for the person trying to separate them. That’s what we should be like as believers, God forbid the devil sees you as easy pickings. Rather give him a workout when he wants to pluck you from the tree, let him know you are connected and willingly choosing to stay grounded in the Vine. By fire, by force, through declaration, intercession, fasting, praise and worship. You shall not be moved.
So let’s spread the word, feed a spirit, encourage a soul!