I am honored to welcome April Boyer to the Standing Against Satan series. Her story is a powerful testimony of God’s working even in the painful and unsure times. And she boldly proclaims hope, even when Satan tries to distract us from the wondrous grace and love of our Savior.

“I throw myself down in my chamber, and I call in, and invite God, and his Angels thither, and when they are there, I neglect God and his angels for the noise of a fly, for the rattling of a coach, for the whining of a door; I talk on in the same posture of praying, eyes lifted up, knees bowed down, as though I prayed to God; and if God or his angels should ask me when I thought last of God in that prayer, I cannot tell. Sometimes I find that I had forgot what I was about, but when I began to forget it I cannot tell. A memory of yesterday’s pleasures, a fear of tomorrow’s dangers, a straw under my knee, a noise in mine ear, a light in mine eye, an anything, a nothing, a fancy, a chimera in my brain troubles me in my prayer.” -John Donne

Do you see yourself in this scenario?

Certainly, we have all been distracted by the world’s noise, and by the call to be ‘doing’.

Certainly, we have all been distracted by the world’s noise, and by the call to be ‘doing’.… Click To TweetWhen I was diagnosed with cancer in 2012, after an already trying year of losses, and serious illnesses for both my husband and me, the knees of my faith shook.

The announcement of cancer was scary enough. The idea that my husband also required surgery and strengthening was almost too much to think about. Between the both of us, we had 7 surgeries (I had a couple of procedures as well) and we lost 2 parents and another family member.

Satan was doing his best to distract me from refreshing in the presence of my God.

Hearing cancer, and then all the other news made me yell out to God: “Why?”.

Then I examined myself and imagined all the reasons God did not love me. So I cried “Why not me?”.

But most of all, after learning about the year we would experience, I cried more: “Why now”?

Satan was hard at work washing away the foundation built on my faith in God.

He whispered to me that God did not care.

He devised ways to make me think that my God had forgotten me.

He weakened my trust by invading my imagination with anger and bitterness.

My husband did not stand on strong faith. It was sporadic. It was unsure. I blamed myself. Here was another device Satan used against me.

My prayer, my quiet time with God, was now interrupted by the crunching sound of doubt.

Has your quiet time with God ever been interrupted by the crunching sound of doubt?… Click To TweetThe noise of anger roaring in my head erased any peace I had when approaching God.

I knew that my God is full of mercy, grace and compassion, and I knew he understood my anger.

He was ready to forgive it, and lift me out of it. But it took more time.

Satan scrabbled around the empty, grieving recesses of my mind, looking for any evidence of faith and joy. Sadly, I handed it over.

God brought me back to Himself in the quiet moments during chemo treatments. I rested, and waited. I had nowhere else to go- so I went back to my God.

I examined my heart, and asked myself how I had been blessed.

In spite of the loss, the pain and the discomfort, I was blessed.

Family members loved me and showered me with attention and compassion. My church family and friends were supportive and helped with driving and meals. I had time to heal and recover, and no pressing responsibilities to return to. A daily job would have slowed that recovering. Caring for youngsters or my mother would have taken more stamina than I had. Other responsibilities were now unimportant.

God put me in the best place I could be to endure this trial in the time He had ordained.

The experience of that trial brought my husband back to church. It brought my son closer to me. It put my mother’s care in the hands of my sister; at the right time, and in the right place.

My Lord put me in a situation where rest and quiet would fill many days.

Soon I was hearing the joyous sounds of God’s creation and the laughter of children instead of the angry drum-beats that Satan pushed on me.

I could hear God’s sweet words whispering to me in the breeze of that 2013 summer. I could hear His promises to me that never fail, that never change.

He gave me the opportunity to sit quietly and enjoy His wondrous creation. I heard Him through the bird song, and scampering critters. I could talk to God and He talked to me.

Then I started the process of recovery. After treatments were done, I wanted to fly. I wanted to throw myself in serving and doing. I felt so well for about 5 months, I put all the cancer and ensuing chemo behind me.

Satan again tried to convince me I could do whatever I wanted to. I was invincible. Satan invaded into my prayer time, and briefly – I lost that precious time with God.

Once again, I entered that sweet rest and apart-ness. Jeff had given me a screen house where I sat quietly and heard God’s whispers of strength and encouragement.

I was reminded of my Lord’s promises to abide, to give me rest, to strengthen me, to be faithful in all things. His arms wrapped around me, and together, we conquered the negative jabs and arrows that Satan slung at me.

I can stand against Satan because Christ anchors me.

His words of encouragement and hope are more powerful than Satan’s attempts to distract me.

Satan has no chance against the truth I know from God’s own word- His words of truth and love.

Satan has no chance against the truth I know from God’s own word! #StandAgainstSatan Click To TweetFor great is his love toward us, and the faithfulness of the LORD endures forever. Praise the LORD.” -Psalm 117:2

“But the Lord is faithful, and he will strengthen you and protect you from the evil one.” 2 Thess. 3:3

 

 


 

“Wife, mom, grandmother, I am a daughter of the King, accepting His grace at age 20. I care about small ministries that reach into tiny corners of the local world and shine a light. I hear the cries of women who are struggling to survive cancer, and for those who choose not to hope. I pray that the ministry of my book “In His Shadow” can bring that hope. I am also passionate about serving God through the ministry of encouragement cards to nursing home shut-ins. My heart is wrenched by the voices of women held in captivity in many lands including our own.”

Proverbs 3:5,6 “Trust in the Lord with all your heart, and lean not unto your own understanding. In all your ways acknowledge Him and He will direct your path.”

Follow April on her blog: http://www.restginhisshadow.com


 

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20 Comments

  1. Julie

    Love this post! Satan likes to get me on “doing” all the time. Distraction is my downfall.
    Visiting from #FreshMarketFriday

    Reply
  2. Theresa Boedeker

    Thanks for this post. Satan is always trying to distract us and our mind. I love how the book, Screwtape Letters, shows this. I love that your story shows that God was working behind the scenes making everything and the timing benefit you and others. What an awesome God we serve.

    Reply
  3. Rita

    A powerful testimony of hope at the end of all of it, the light at the end of the tunnel

    Reply
  4. Dani | Free Indeed

    Wow April, this was so stirring and encouraging. I’ve lost a few family members to cancer, and how I prayed for them and wished they knew the Lord in such a trial. God truly anchors us in His love, enabling us to not only endure, but to do so in quiet joy and restful worship. Praise the Lord He helped you overcome the attacks of the enemy – He is so faithful!

    Reply
  5. Karlene Arthur

    So glad I tuned in from #GraceAndTruth today and caught this post. April, thank you for sharing to unselfishly with all of us what God has done and continues to do in your life. An astounding testimony of His Grace and goodness {we know and, yet, still, we are astounded}. PTL!

    Reply
  6. Jen E

    I love that through all your difficulties you were able to sift through and still see God. What an amazing testimony. This is what the world needs to hear, that difficulties are what God can use to draw you into His presence. Thank you so much for sharing your testimony. I’ll be sharing this with others, again, this is the stuff people nee to hear. Also, when I’ve made a declaration to put time aside for God, I’ve notice how other things start to absorb that set aside time. It can be difficult to stop and be purposeful, but I really need to make intentional effort to keep my “appointments” with God!

    Reply
  7. Summer

    What a beautiful testimony! I, too have been through times where God has slowed me down significantly so that I could focus on Him. Our daily lives can be so distracting and everything is an “emergency” which must be addressed immediately or so we think. I do not ever want to lose sight of what is really important. #Salt and Light Link Up

    Reply
  8. Keri

    Such a powerful testimony! Thank you for using your story to impact others!

    Reply
  9. Anne | Like the morning sun

    Thank you for this testimony! It’s true, we have to fight Satan, not in our own power, but with Christ at our side. With Him we can reject all the doubtful and depressing thoughts Satan tries to whisper in our ears. This reminds me of Ephesians 6:10-17. And Romans 8:28-29 – all things work together for good for them who love the Lord. God bless you!

    Reply
  10. Brenda

    Wow, April, what a testimony. Thank you for sharing so vulnerably. The father of lies sure likes to sneak doubt and discouragement into our hearts, doesn’t he? ugh. So glad God’s Spirit lives within and can whisper against the lies of satan. — Thanks for sharing April with us today, Nichole. ((sweet graces))

    Reply
  11. Valerie

    Thank you for sharing your faith walk through hard times. I loved your quote “I could stand against Satan because Christ anchored me.” What assurance to keep standing and to keep getting back up when life knocks us down.

    Reply
  12. Lureta

    What a journey and what a testimony. Thank you for sharing. It is such an encouragement and I count it a privilege to have a peek into your walk of faith and sweet victory with our Lord.
    Blessings to you and your family.

    Reply
  13. Leslie

    Wow! This is such a powerful testimony and so encouraging. Thank you for sharing! I have a screened in porch, too and find a lot of peace there. I love hearing God’s creation all around me. I could really relate to how you found Him in the peaceful sounds of nature.

    Reply
  14. Sarah Geringer

    What a powerful testimony. I loved the quote from John Donne too. Thank you for sharing!

    Reply
  15. Liz

    What joy in your comment about your trial bringing your husband back to unswerving fellowship with the Lord. Thank you for sharing your story! Your words are filled with hope! Blessings!

    Reply
    • April Boyer

      Thanks Liz! I appreciate continuing prayers for my husband. My hope IS in Christ!

      Reply
  16. Pami

    The “crunching sound of doubt”….wow. You’ve nailed that feeling I’ve had many many times. Beautifully written!! I LOVE and can so totally relate to the John Donnelly quote!

    Reply
    • April Boyer

      Thank you Pami! I do love John Donnelly! Your comments bless me!

      Reply
  17. Elizabeth @ Guilty Chocoholic Mama

    Thank you for this, Nicole and April! This truth-filled post reminds me of something I learned in a recent Bible study on the armor of God: Satan’s fiery arrows are not intended so much to kill as they are to distract…and that distraction eventually leads to death. Bless you for the reminder to put up my shield of faith today. Stopping by from Salt & Light!

    Reply
    • April Boyer

      Thank you Elizabeth- Guilty Chocoholic ! I like that! Yes, Satan is an expert at distraction, especially in this world today.

      Reply

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