We all have our demons, figuratively and maybe even literally. When Jesus went up the hill side in the Gospel of Mark he summoned to himself those whom he wanted. He called them apostles and he tasked them with three things: to be with him; to preach; to cast our demons. I think the order is significant as is the amount of time we engage in each.
Being with Jesus (or staying in love with Jesus) is crucial to our wellbeing. If Jesus truly is the author of life then our lives rest or fall on this pattern of existing – abiding in Jesus. Abiding in Jesus ensures the production of fruit, the right kind of fruit. Abiding in Jesus is how we can be filled with love and there by look like love (see 1 Corinthians 13). The world needs more people who abide in Jesus, more people who choose to be with Jesus and to become like Jesus.
It is out of this abiding, and only from this abiding, that we have something to say, even the right to speak. If you have not love, if you do not abide, then what you say is a brass gong or a clashing cymbal. Only after you have been with Jesus can you speak meaningful truth.
It is out of this abiding that we possess the authority to cast out demons. Casting out demons, fighting against the powers and principalities, quickly becomes fighting against flesh and blood if we don’t begin with a regular pattern of being with Jesus. He alone knows the difference. The demons you face have no authority over the abiding presence of Christ in you.
I guess what I’m saying, and I’m saying it to myself, is that unless we heed the call to be with Jesus we will undoubtedly wreak havoc with our words and suffer defeat at the hands of our demons. Give me Jesus.