Less than one hour after we landed in Milan, Italy a few years ago my briefcase was stolen. I had walked up to a counter to purchase train tickets with my wife and our luggage. I told my wife Michelle to wait for a moment and I dropped my luggage and briefcase on the floor. When I was finished at the counter I turned around and my briefcase was gone. In the briefcase were my new laptop, my glasses, sunglasses, a watch, my books and all our travel documents. In just a short period of time, in the first hour of my vacation, I had been robbed.

In my entire life I have never been robbed. Well, besides various referees and officials during my sports career. I may have been robbed through a phony investment years ago but never anything like this. My wife had her purse stolen once but nothing had ever happened to me. I began to think about how I have been warned over the years to look out for gypsies who steal for living in various European countries. I remembered how years ago my uncle had his briefcase stolen in Italy.

People are not supposed to steal. It is against the law to rob someone. But I had to bear some responsibility for what had happened. I should have never turned my back and left my briefcase behind me where I could not see it. In fact, I should have brought it with me and left everything else with my wife. As I sat on the train thinking about all of this I Peter 5:8 came to mind. It says, “Be on your guard and stay awake. Your enemy the devil is like a roaring lion, sneaking around to find someone to attack.”

We have an enemy who is after us. Jesus said in John 10:10, “A thief comes only to rob, kill and destroy.” We must be vigilant, we must be on our guard, we must be aware of the enemy’s devices. I should have been more vigilant and if I had my briefcase would not have been stolen. No matter what the thief may have wanted to do I could have thwarted it by being on my guard. I knew gypsies were there and I needed to be cognizant of it. To quote my Army officer son we were there to visit, I needed situational awareness.

The enemy wants to rob you of the abundant life. He wants to kill your dreams. He wants to destroy God’s plan for your life. You must be on guard. You need to be constantly aware of the enemy’s schemes. I got robbed in the first hour I was in Italy, the enemy will attack at any time. He will try to tempt you, to trick you, to have you believe lies instead of the truth. Be vigilant at all times. Never let your guard down.


About Rick McDaniel

Rick McDaniel is a noted author, international communicator and church leader. He is the founder/senior pastor of Richmond Community Church in Richmond, Virginia. The church is known for its contemporary and innovative services and has a worldwide reach through McDaniel has earned three degrees including an advanced degree from Duke University and is the author of​ six​​ books including his latest "Turn Your Setbacks Into Comebacks." He has traveled and spoken at conferences and churches worldwide spanning six continents.

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 New Devotional from Pastor Rick McDaniel: Vida De Alto Impacto con Rick McDaniel

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