#1 Most Under-used Spiritual Weapon that you need right now

forgivenesThis is a weapon every Christian must use to fight the enemy of your soul. Not using it leaves you open to resentment, bitterness and anger that magnifies emotional scars and wounds. It divides and harms relationships.

Using this one weapon sets us free from the pain the enemy inflicts upon us. It is also a weapon of obedience.

It is a not-used-often-enough weapon. In fact, many don’t think of it as a weapon. A duty at most. But it is a weapon of mass destruction to the enemy’s camp. Satan fears this weapon more than you can imagine. It is part of a two-prong sword:  Forgiveness and repentance – go together to set us free from spiritual bondage in our life.

Forgiveness is key!

How does it work?

Jesus talked about forgiveness frequently. It’s in the “Lord’s Prayer”. It is the topic of many parables.

My favorite is in Luke 17.

Luke 17:4 Even if he sins against you seven times in a day, and seven times returns to say, ‘I repent,’ you must forgive him.” 5The apostles said to the Lord, “Increase our faith!” 6And the Lord answered, “If you have faith the size of a mustard seed, you can say to this mulberry tree, ‘Be uprooted and planted in the sea,’ and it will obey you.…

Forgiveness is an act of faith that releases Jesus Christ’s healing and restoration to your life. Forgiveness means to let go, or release. When you do this you let go of the right for vindication and  judgement on the other person. You release that person and that situation into God’s capable hands. He takes on your cause. Then he gives you healing in your heart in return.

What happens if you don’t forgive?

bitterness

 

 

Choosing NOT to forgive is a seed. That seed of unforgiveness becomes like a root in your life. That seed grows and is fed with resentment and anger. Once it is fully grown it becomes a root of unforgiveness with branches that produce hurt, pain, bitterness, resentment, anger, judgement, etc. The fruit of a bitter root is poison to your relationships. Even people that were unattached to the situation or person are prey to that poison. It affects your thoughts about yourself and others. The Bible say s it “defiles many”.

You may not realize it. We push the painful memories way down, lock it away and throw away the key. It doesn’t stay forgotten and it doesn’t stay hidden. We just grow accustom to the pain. We justify the unforgiveness. We tell ourselves it’s just a part of life, or they don’t deserve to be forgiven, it was a long time ago, don’t be a wimp about it…. and many other excuses not to deal with it.

Truth is it takes an act of your free will and a declaration from your mouth to apply forgiveness and receive the benefits Jesus gave His life for. 

There’s a reason Jesus compared unforgiveness in Luke 17 to the roots of a Mulberry Tree. It has very deep roots.

Forgiveness is an act of obedience to our Heavenly Father. He commands us to forgive. Jesus gave us an example of how God feels about it when we don’t forgive in Matthew 18:21-35. Hint: he doesn’t like it.

32Then the master summoned him and declared, ‘You wicked servant! I forgave all your debt because you begged me. 33Should you not have had mercy on your fellow servant, just as I had on you?’ 34In his anger, his master turned him over to the jailers to be tortured, until he should repay all that he owed.…

How can we think we are better than anyone else in the entire world and history of mankind that we can ask for forgiveness of our sins and wrongs but hold sins and wrongs of another person against them?

It is not wise to think we should have that power. I’m glad God didn’t give me the power of who gets forgiveness and who doesn’t. This world would be even more messed up!!

So we know why it’s important, what it does and why we should do it. Now, HOW do you forgive?

It’s not complicated but 3 things are very important:

  1. Declare it out loud with your mouth
  2. Say it with faith in Jesus that He is the great forgiver and healer
  3. Listen to the Holy Spirit and receive what God wants to do in your life to heal you.

Great example of a Forgiveness prayer:

Heavenly Father, I choose of my own free will to forgive _______________(insert the person’s name) for hurting me by ________________(insert what the person did to you and it made you feel). I release and let it go to you. Holy Spirit come and heal my heart of all this pain and heal the pain in the memories. Come and tell me your truth about this situation. In Jesus Name, Amen.

Then Listen.

If you begin to have thoughts about another painful memory, that’s ok, it is God bringing up things that need forgiveness. Pray this prayer for each painful memory. That is God’s way of cleaning up the mess and yanking the bitter roots out.

If you are struggling to forgive read this previous post Can you forgive when the person that hurt you will never say “I’m sorry”?

Be blessed today as you go on your journey to living a forgiving lifestyle!

 

***BibleHub is my website of choice to look up Bible verses! All verses posted on this site come from here. Happy studying!

Advertisements

Why should you forgive someone that hurt you?

poison 2

I once heard a quote “not forgiving is like drinking poison and expecting the other person to die”.

Those words are truer than you realize. Unforgiveness turns into resentment and grows into bitterness. It affects you physically, emotionally and spiritually. It is like poison. Unforgiveness toward one person or incident will affect your decisions, how you see yourself, and your relationships with others over your lifetime.

Forgiveness is Biblical. But secular scientists are discovering that illnesses and diseases can be caused or made worse by unforgiveness.

Most people choose NOT to forgive because they have a misunderstanding of what it is.

So what is Forgiveness?

It is an act of your will. Your choice. It is not a feeling. You must say “I forgive…” from your mouth and from your heart. Even when it is hard it must be said out loud.

Matthew 6:9-13 Jesus teaches us how to pray. The following verse is a key verse to our physical, emotional and spiritual health.

Matthew 6:12 (NLT) “…and forgive us our sins, as we have forgiven those who sin against us”

In the very next verse 13 He says “And lead us not into temptation, but deliver us from the evil one.” These two verses are connected. If you forgive you are also delivered from the “evil one” Satan, the accuser, that comes to steal, kill and destroy.

When you forgive you apply the blood of Jesus to your wounds, emotionally and spiritually. That blood of Jesus has the power to set you free from all power the enemy may try to plant bitterness in your heart.

Unforgiveness chains you to the one that hurt you. Forgiveness breaks those chains.

It is an act of obedience to God

God shows mercy to us. We must in turn show mercy. No one deserves mercy. We do not forgive because someone deserves it. It is not for us to decide who deserves mercy. It is simply for us to obey God and His commands to forgive every time and to every person. Let Him take care of the rest. When you walk in obedience you will walk in so much more freedom. Carrying around unforgiveness weighs YOU down. It doesn’t hurt anyone else but you.

Matthew 6:14 For if you forgive men their trespasses, your Heavenly Father will also forgive you. 15But if you do not forgive men their trespasses, neither will your Father forgive yours.

When you forgive someone that hurt you Jesus breaks those chains that bind you to that person spiritually. You lay the situation as His feet and He begins the healing process for you. He is the one that Judges, and will repay. You become free.

breaks chainsSo what is the process if you choose to NOT forgive?

I’m sure you have been through it a million times…I know I have. You are bombarded in your thoughts. You re-live the hurt over and over again. It may replay in your mind like a terrible movie. This causes you to be a victim over and over again, causing emotional pain, feelings of powerlessness.

 

Then resentment sets in. This becomes bitterness. You will say things against that person like “I hate…”, you will condemn, and every memory about that person will be discolored.

That person will “push your buttons” and anger you easily. This is sure sign you have unforgiveness toward that person.

You behavior and emotions become affected by that person. You may be happy until you think about that person or a memory affiliated with that person and suddenly you may be mad, sad or indifferent.

What do you do if you have these signs?

It’s time to forgive. Remember, forgiving doesn’t mean you allow that person to harm you anymore. You don’t even have to be friends with that person. You are not condoning bad behavior. You are letting go of any debt you feel someone owes you.

The amplified version of Matthew 6:12 says “And forgive us our debts, as we also have forgive (left, remitted, and let go of the debts, and have given up resentment against) our debtors.”

Here’s how to pray to forgive…

Heavenly Father, I purpose and choose to forgive ____________ (name) for doing _____________ (fill in the blank). I choose to let go of that debt and let you handle it. I ask you to heal my heart and take away the pain of every memory associated with this. Tell me your truth about this situation. And tell me your truth about me. Amen.

The Great Awakening

azusastreet

Go listen to this:

http://podcasts.ibethel.org/en/podcasts/resistance-persistence-and-breakthrough

I haven’t posted in a long time. A bit of a sabbatical, I guess.

But I am stirred today by His Spirit.

My daughter called me a couple of days ago and said that she and a pastor friend want to go to the Azusa street ….something or other….you know how parents can half listen and assume at the same time?? Yes, terrible of me to admit, I know.

I was both excited and dismayed my daughter wanted to go. Excited because my prayer and dream is for an “Azusa Street” like revival to come again. I read the books. I pray all the time for it.

Dismayed…well, those plane tickets are really expensive.

Today, just like any other day, I slept too long pushing snooze. Did manage to make it to the gym. And at the gym, listen to a Bethel Church podcast. I love Bill Johnson’s preaching! It was the podcast linked above. Please listen. After that I chose another podcast. Just happened to be Beni Johnson.

I started crying.

Then praying. I am stirred to my very core. I cannot stop! Every part of my being is crying out for more of GOD, more of HIS Spirit! Just MORE God!

I must fast. I must pray. I must get as many people to that place on April 9th as I can. 

So, here it is. My plea for you to join me in prayer and fasting for this event. I believe God is pouring our His Spirit on all flesh. This is just the beginning. WE  are living in an exciting time in history.

I pray you are stirred today and feel HIS presence where you are while you read this and will be drawn to HIM and cry out for MORE!

 

The Comparison Trap: Marriage

comparison 2

 

 

 

 

 

 

Living in the Land of “Er”

“If I was pretty-er..”                   “If I was thin-er…”                         “If I was rich-er…”    

“If I had  more-er.”                   “If I was lucky-er..”                        “If I was smart-er..”

…I would be…Happy-er…Fun-er…Bett-er………..

I was recently listening to Andy Stanley. He preached a great lesson on the comparison trap and the Land of Er. While listening to this I realized there was a great connection for marriages. Read on as I share the connection and how your marriage can be healed.

Here’s a link to Andy Stanley’s messages: http://northpoint.org/messages/comparison-trap

Who do you compare yourself to?

Why do we compare ourselves to anyone?

Down deep inside is a part of us that needs to feel successful, accepted, and okay.

We just want to know we are OK. And how do we know we are OK? We compare ourselves to people around us that seem OK or not oK and we say “well I’m not as OK as that person, but I’m better than that person. So I am OK.” Because there is always someone better and always someone worse off.

And we compare everyone in our lives to other people too. We compare our children to everyone else’s children. “My children aren’t as smart as her kids.” “My children act better than her kids.” “My children can’t play sports like those kids.” “My son is…My daughter is…compared to….” “MY baby is prettier than all other babies!”

Who do the perfect parents compare their kids to?

Who does God compare you to? As his kid. He compares us to no one. He loves and accepts us just the way we are. You are not compared to sister so & so in the front pew. Your holiness or lack thereof or shortcomings are not compared to anyone.

When your child does something wrong you don’t love him less. When you correct him you do it for his own good. To help him live a better life as he grows up. You don’t expect him to know it all. You teach him and he develops good habits and such over time.

The Garden of Life

garden

I picture my life as a beautiful garden.

Each lesson that we learn is to pluck out the roots that cause the ugliness in our lives. Roots are being plucked out: Bitterness, unforgiveness, traumas, etc.

Think of your life as a garden. Do you want ugly weeds in your garden?

The light has to shine on it. Show that it’s there. Then we can deal with it with God’s help and healing.

We all want our Garden of Life to be beautiful-filled with joy, peace, love, patience, kindness, goodness, purity, beauty, etc.

So is there one more root that has to come out?

Comparison

 

Parable of the Talents (money bags)

Matthew 25:14

14“Again, it will be like a man going on a journey, who called his servants and entrusted his wealth to them. 15To one he gave five bags of gold, to another two bags, and to another one bag,a each according to his ability. Then he went on his journey.16The man who had received five bags of gold went at once and put his money to work and gained five bags more. 17So also, the one with two bags of gold gained two more. 18But the man who had received one bag went off, dug a hole in the ground and hid his master’s money.

19“After a long time the master of those servants returned and settled accounts with them. 20The man who had received five bags of gold brought the other five. ‘Master,’ he said, ‘you entrusted me with five bags of gold. See, I have gained five more.’

21“His master replied, ‘Well done, good and faithful servant! You have been faithful with a few things; I will put you in charge of many things. Come and share your master’s happiness!’

22“The man with two bags of gold also came. ‘Master,’ he said, ‘you entrusted me with two bags of gold; see, I have gained two more.’

23“His master replied, ‘Well done, good and faithful servant! You have been faithful with a few things; I will put you in charge of many things. Come and share your master’s happiness!’

24“Then the man who had received one bag of gold came. ‘Master,’ he said, ‘I knew that you are a hard man, harvesting where you have not sown and gathering where you have not scattered seed. 25So I was afraid and went out and hid your gold in the ground. See, here is what belongs to you.’

26“His master replied, ‘You wicked, lazy servant! So you knew that I harvest where I have not sown and gather where I have not scattered seed? 27Well then, you should have put my money on deposit with the bankers, so that when I returned I would have received it back with interest.

28“ ‘So take the bag of gold from him and give it to the one who has ten bags. 29For whoever has will be given more, and they will have an abundance. Whoever does not have, even what they have will be taken from them. 30And throw that worthless servant outside, into the darkness, where there will be weeping and gnashing of teeth.’

  • 1.    Each servant was distributed his portion to care for. Entrusted “his wealth”

2.    Each servant had to answer for his actions.

3.    Only one servant placed blame.

           a.       He was called “wicked and lazy”.

           b.     Can we be that way sometimes in our marriage? It’s easier to complain and criticize and compare than to do something positive?

4. Suffer the Consequences

           a.  Not living the way God intended results in frustration, fear, and torment.

           b.  And results in no peace.

How does this apply to marriage?

1.    God entrusted one of his most precious treasures to us–our spouse. God’s creation. Beautifully and wonderfully made. To love, honor and cherish. God’s Treasure.

2.    In the most holy bond on earth-husband and wife united as one.

3.    How we respond to what was “entrusted” is up to us. The blame is not on God if we feel we got a bad lot. We can’t say…if only my spouse was like ….. or…if only my spouse was this or that…

               a.    The 3rd servant blames the master for his actions. “If you had given me more I could have done more with it. I didn’t have the 5 or even the two.

                You gave me just one, how am  I to make that into something great?” With God all things are possible and maybe what you look at as a “bad lot” and less than ideal                   may be the best you could ever imagine if you changed your perspective. Sometimes it is our perspective that is off not God handing you a bad situation. Sometimes                its our own sin and mess ups we pay for. But even our own mess-ups can be made into something great if we fully rely on God to so something with it. 

4.    We compare our “lot” or “spouse” to others just like we do our house, car, job, money and our children.

            a.    We say “if my husband acted better I would act better” “If my wife was..” “If he acted like so & so…” “if wasn’t as lazy as…” or “if he would just do this …”

5.    Sometimes we contributed to the way our spouses respond to us through our own disrespect, dishonor, superiority, criticism.

Living in the Land of Comparison “ER” is dangerous. The grass is NEVER greener on the other side. That is a lie. 

How do we move out of the land of “Er”?

  1. Be thankful. Recognize that God gave you that husband. (and everything else you have). His precious treasure that he shares with you.
  2. Ask God to show you what you can learn with your spouse. There is always a lesson. God is developing something in you. Look for it. Learn it. Live it.

Peace will be found when you move out of the land of “Er”. That is what we seek. PEACE

The Christian life was never meant to be just a get out of Hell free card. Jesus didn’t just give his life for that. He gave his life so we could live free and abundantly. With peace and joy. In whatever situation it is.

Don’t just say “Oh, I can be thankful because my spouse could be a lot worse.”

Instead “I am thankful because my spouse is…” Be specific. If you can’t think of anything then because “he/she is loved by God and God will save him, renew him, etc.”

Don’t let the bitterness cause you to resent your marriage. Or cause you to blame God for everything wrong in your life or marriage.

Prayer:

Heavenly Father, I repent for not treasuring my spouse, for not honoring him/her in my thoughts and actions. I repent for every blame I have ever put on you Lord. Holy Spirit, help me to be thankful for my spouse. Help me to praise him for things he does. Help me to recognize the gift and talents you have put in him. I repent for any resentment I may have. I trust in you Sovereign God that you give good things to your children and you do good for us all our days. I trust that my spouse is your Best for me. I will start to look at him/her in that way. I am willing to learn from him/her the lessons you want to teach me. Holy Spirit, show me what you will have me to learn.

If he/she is not saved I ask you to open his eyes and show him/her your truth. Help him/her to walk in your ways. Turn his/her heart to you. You change the heart of a man from stone to flesh. Change it Lord. Send someone to him/her to minister. Help me be the light that will shine for you and point to your grace and mercy every day.

I pray blessings over my spouse. That he/she is strong in you, that he/she is highly favored. That he/she hears your voice and follows you. That you protect him/her everywhere he/she goes. 

How Satan Stole the Church

I listened to this podcast from Your Move with Andy Stanley. I enjoy his preaching and he is one of the few podcasts to which I subscribe.

I wrestled with the term “Christianity” recently. Actually, for over a year I have struggled with the definition or lack thereof.

Andy Stanley has a series right now on this. While listening to one particular podcast in this series called “Christianity: Quitters”, I realized something. I want to share with you this thought.

First, let’s give you some background on this subject.
Above is a link that is part of Andy’s introduction of his 30 minute podcast. He so eloquently describes an atheist turned Christian, turned non-Christian 10 years later. If you watch only this segment and stop you will miss the point.
(Maybe you were raised in church, maybe you don’t like church because of the people. I get it. And so does Andy Stanley. Watch or listen to his entire series on this subject if you are struggling with this same issue of the definition of Christianity.)

The term Christian is my issue. There is no definition of this term that is universal and agreed upon by all. It is one word that means different things to every person.
To some it means to act like Jesus Christ or to resemble him as much as possible.
To others it describes someone who attends church. To others it may mean someone who believes in Jesus. And yet, I do not have enough time or space on this page to list all the possible definitions I personally have discovered.
I get so confused with so many definitions of this one word. Even to the group that call themselves Christians they don’t agree on just one single definition.

Did you ever speak to someone that said “oh yeah, I’m a Christian”? But then your definition of that term did not match their actions. So you determined quietly within yourself that they are not really a Christian. And thus judged them as not the same as you. “I don’t know what he/she is but it’s not what “I” call a Christian!” And they may have said the same thing about you.

Andy made an interesting point. The term Christian was not even used by the early church. They called themselves disciples of Jesus Christ. The term Christian was actually a derogatory term used to describe Christ’s disciples of the early church.
Over time this term stuck and is a widely popular and most used term to describe people of the church. I live in the Bible Belt so it’s super common.

Here’s my profound thought! (It was Big deal to me)

Satan is the king of compromise. If he can’t get you to out-right break one of the Ten Commandments maybe he can blur the lines a bit. Let’s diffuse the label. Let’s take out all the meaning. Since the term Christianity can mean a wide variety of lifestyles, beliefs, and practices the term has no substance.
The term Christianity has no standard. We say the Bible is the Word of God and is the standard by which we all must live and be judged. But anyone referring to that term does not have to adhere to the standard of the Bible.
In fact, there’s much confusion in the church world even of what the standard is.

The term Jesus used was “disciple”. That carries a hefty weight. You can do all kinds of things in the name of Christianity but if you call yourself a disciple you are “locked” into a very specific, well defined description. It describes behavior. It describes thoughts.
Disciple: learner, pupil, follower.

John 13:34-35 (NIV) “A new command I give you: Love one another. As I have loved you, so you must love one another. 35 By this everyone will know that you are my disciples, if you love one another.”


THIS is how you know you are a disciple.

If you want to make an impact on the world it will be because HOW you love. Not what you say you are.

1 John 5:2 NIV This is how we know that we love the children of God: by loving God and carrying out his commands.

If I do not SHOW love to everyone I cannot say that I am a “disciple” of Jesus Christ.

1 Cor 13:1 NLT If I could speak all the languages of earth and of angels, but didn’t love others, I would only be a noisy gong or a clanging cymbal.

If I pray better than anyone else. If I can preach so well that all who listen are stirred to tears. If I can sing so that goose bumps go down your spine. If I am used in the gift of the Holy Spirit but I do not love I am no better than a clanging cymbal. I make no more impact on the world than a loud, short, annoying, forgotten noise.

Satan will try everything he can to cripple the Church from promoting the Kingdom of God. Anything he can do disable the Gospel.

How easy is it then to destroy the meaning of Christianity? Water it down. Take out the LOVE command. I can love my friends, love the people I hang out with. But don’t expect me to love those heathens. Or to love those that hurt me.

If we don’t love the way Christ loved then we cannot call ourselves a disciple of Jesus Christ. That is what “Christianity” is supposed to mean-Disciple of Jesus Christ. My life should resemble His. I should strive for the same standard by which Jesus lived.

It is time to take back the church. Take it back what God intended.

The author Andy speaks about in the clip above said “It’s simply impossible for me to ‘belong’ to this quarrelsome, hostile, disputatious, and deservedly infamous group.”

My prayer is that the church of Jesus Christ does not resemble that description. Granted, not everyone that calls themselves a Christian behaves like that. However, it is too common to see hateful, judgmental, condemning behavior.

Join with me to pray that the church gets a new, full dose of LOVE the way Jesus lived it.

Speakpeacealways writer is very talented and has a heart for the people of God. Pray for the body of Christ!

I now have a new word …”churchanity”.

speak peace always

They have taken my Lord away, and I don’t know where they’ve laid Him.

Swinging censers, white red robes

Glowing mitres

Chants and genuflections

They have taken my Lord away, and I don’t know where they’ve laid Him.

The Amplified and Extended 10 commandments

Shrieking mikes, pounding basses

PhDs, M.Divs, and Revs

They have taken my Lord away, and I don’t know where they’ve laid Him.

Be very frightened of the Lord’s rejection

His whip is out for your correction

Examine your soul

Weep and mourn

Pay your tithes

Don’t question the shepherd of the flock

Churchanity has taken my Lord away, and I don’t know where they’ve laid Him.

Families struggle to make ends meet

The worn and weary find no listening ear

Jesus’ loved sheep stand out in the street

Waiting for His bride to rise and draw near

Churchanity has taken my Lord away, and I don’t…

View original post 793 more words

Call To Prayer

20130313-233231.jpg

I sit up late into the night with a heavy burden for our churches.

Daily, my heart is stirred for a deeper walk with The Lord. Daily, I yearn to know Him more.

Join me In a fervent seeking after God’s heart for the church body. Actually, more truly spoken…a repentant prayer on behalf of God’s people who have lost their first love.

How far our body(church body of saved souls) has strayed from the selfless walk of daily sacrifice of self and service to the King. We are busy with mundane daily activities. Many that have no purpose except to steal time of prayer and fasting from our God and King.

What if we got a glimpse of heaven from our earthly beds?
What if that stirred up the longing within our hearts to seek after God with a humble heart?
Those you seek shall find and the door shall be opened…

What if we could see with heavenly eyes of our loving Father?
To see the hearts of man not just the outward appearance? To love others so deeply that it impacted the kingdom of darkness by snatching away hungry souls? Hungry for the love of our God and King?

My prayer is for His people to return to Him with a renewed love and steadfastness of heart. So clear in our call to serve Him by serving others. So fervent in our love for Jesus that we never hesitate to share the truth of the gospel. So eager to spend time with Him we daily spend time in prayer and talk to Him.

God is preparing His bride for Jesus soon coming. Are we ready church? Are we ready?
I sit in church services where the Spirit of God moved among the people but only few answer the call.
Church services should be a place of healing, deliverance and salvation. Where believers are annointed and equipped for every good work. Where the power of God is manifested among the people because the hunger and expectation are almost tangible.

Prayer
Oh sovereign Lord that sits enthroned in the heaven in great light. Hear our humble plea for your people. We repent of our pride. We repent of disobedience. We repent of our secret transgressions. We repent of our lethargic attitudes toward your Kingdom. Forgive us, we need you in our homes, at work, at church, in the streets.
Send your latter rain! Send a great outpouring of your Holy Spirit with great signs and wonders. Send your convicting power to reveal and prick our hardened hearts and draw us closer to you. Draw your people to you and engulf them in your holy presence. We invite you to come into our lives and mess us up for you! Get all in our business, get all in our well laid plans. We give every thought to you, every plan, every day! In Jesus wonderful Name, Amen!

Awake O’Sleeper

Awake O Sleeper

Whitestone Motion Pictures created this gripping video. Music written by The Bright Bothers.

I posted this video once. I am posting again because there is a deep longing within my heart for God’s people to live free from bondage.

Allow me to explain what I see in this video…

1. God’s people are in chains. We don’t realize the chains the enemy has placed on us from years of suffering, trauma, pain and unforgiveness. We are in bondage to illness, disease, unforgiveness, sin, gossip, backbiting, regret, fear…the list is long. We are called to fight the good fight. We are called to be more than conquerors. We are given every good thing and all authority and power to put all bondage and everything of the enemy under our feet. Yet, we are sleeping. We walk through life as if the chains are meant to be there. We are so used to the chains. We forget they are not meant for us. Gal 5:1, John 8:32

2. Jesus lived, died and rose again, to set us free  from all bondage of the enemy. 1 John 3:8b

3. Freedom from all pain, regret, fleshly desires, addictions, are for every believer. Yet, many believer’s don’t LIVE like they are free. We live in the pain, fear, regret, resentment and unforgiveness. Many still live in their addictions. Many don’t even realize their bondage. John 10:10

4. Now is the time to fight the enemy and retake the ground, the time, he stole. God restores. Just like in the video, the men in chains find the strength, power and authority to overtake the oppressor. Because of Jesus we have that authority to bind the oppressor and cast him out of our lives. Just like removing a squatter from land we can remove the enemy’s oppression from our lives because we are redeemed. 2 Cor 10:4-5, Eph 6:12, Luke 10:19

The Church is set free through Jesus Christ but we live like we are in bondage.

It’s time to shake off those shackles and proclaim who we are in Christ. To attack the enemy, Satan and his dominion. For we do not fight against flesh and blood but against spiritual wickedness, principalities and powers and rulers of darkness.

Every thought and everything that is good comes from God. He gives good things to His children. All others are of the enemy to steal, kill and destroy you. To separate you from God.

We are born into this slavery to sin so we are familiar with it. It seems natural and what is common. Jesus came to set us free from all that. Yet, we still live in it.

We don’t leave the familiar.  Jesus set us free and we are free indeed.

Wake up O’sleepers!

We fight the good fight of faith. It is a fight not just for unsaved souls but for the saved to truly live free. The Word of God details how to fight, what are weapons are, how to use the those weapons and how to pray. All we have to do is study and then put action behind it in faith. You don’t have to live with bondage, addictions, fear, resentment…or any other thing the enemy has told you. You are worth it, you are a child of the living God with more rights and authority than you can ever understand.

Here is my prayer:

Heavenly Father, you are GOOD. You give good things to your children and we are heirs with Christ. We partake, because of Jesus Christ, in His authority, power and dominion over every evil thing of the enemy. I take every thought into captivity that is of the enemy. Every lie from the enemy is null and void. Holy Spirit, show me the truth. Replace the lie with the truth. Open my eyes to every wrong thing in my heart. Let the light of Jesus shine into the dark recesses of my heart. To reveal, so I can deal with it, through your Holy spirit, and apply the forgiveness to that place. Heal my wounds and scars. Show me any area of unforgiveness in my life. Work that forgiveness in my heart. I understand that I must forgive to be forgiven and this is your command. Give me strength to deal with all deep rooted issues. If necessary, send someone that can pray with me about them. Set me free, show me how to live free. In Jesus Name, Amen.

Esther Lessons for Leaderhip Wives

Several weeks ago I was honored with the opportunity to pray with my sister-in-law. My brother is the pastor of a church and they were in the process of making a life-changing decision. They are the epitome of a faithful, Christian walk. They honor God with their lives just as we all should.

While praying for her I was impressed to go to the book of Esther.

Esther is a great book helpful in both spiritual and physical lessons. (I may do an entire series for women from Esther). In this particular situation I had an understanding of Pastor Wives from a different viewpoint. Being raised in a Pastor’s home, I see pastoral lives from an intimate viewpoint, but never from this  particular viewpoint regarding the wives.

1. She was an intercessor for her people.

Esther 4:6 …to go into the king’s presence to beg for mercy and plead with him for her people

Pastor’s wives are set in a unique place of leadership and set to pray and intercede for the people. Many people are called to be intercessors but few are set as part of the covering of the church body. That translates to a great authority in the spiritual realm over the enemy that seeks to destroy the local church body.

2. They are called, along with their husbands, to sacrifice their own goals, objectives, self, and desires, for God’s heart–the people.

Esther 4:10 …that for any man or woman who approaches the king in the inner court without being summoned the king has but one law: that they be put to death unless the king extends the gold scepter to them and spares their lives.

13 he sent back this answer: “Do not think that because you are in the king’s house you alone of all the Jews will escape. 14 For if you remain silent at this time, relief and deliverance for the Jews will arise from another place, but you and your father’s family will perish. And who knows but that you have come to your royal position for such a time as this?”

Just as Queen Esther was placed in her position for a time to stand in the gap for her people, so are Pastor’s wives. Queen Esther was willing to lay down her very life if necessary to save her nation. Everything she had planned for her life was changed in an instant when she was taken to serve her king. I’m sure that was no easy transition. She may have mourned for a time over her loss of freedom to choose her own life’s path.

3. Greater is God’s call than any path we could choose ourselves.

Pastor’s wives are so important. Their gifts, talents and calling, are often overlooked. God doesn’t just call and place the Pastor, he also calls the wife. God doesn’t make mistakes. He doesn’t underestimate the wife. If you struggle with feelings of unworthiness or fear of failing know that you are worthy of the calling and God is your source of competance and knowledge.

Thank you to all the Pastor’s Wives. Your selfless work is honored by our Heavenly Father.

This is my humble prayer for all Pastor’s Wives:

I ask forgiveness for all harm that has been caused by the people you lead. The sheep don’t realize the pain they cause in the heart of the shepherds. I pray that you will abound in forgiveness and grace toward the people. That God’s grace and mercy will manifest in your heart and mind as you serve the Lord.

I pray for a new found passion for your place of leadership. I pray that your heart is full of compassion for the people. That you see people the way God sees them. I pray that you don’t grow weary in well doing throughout all the trials and tests of pastoral leadership. I pray for renewed strength. For you to grow mightily in wisdom and understanding just as King Solomon was graced with supernatural wisdom to lead the people.

I pray that God heals your heart from all harmful words and deeds from people unwittingly used by the enemy. I pray all wounds are mended and set right. I pray God will set you in great favor among all the people. That people will bless you with their mouths.

I pray for a peace that surpasses all understanding in all circumstances because the Lord is in control.

Amen.

You glorify God with your life. Bless you and Thank you!

Thoughts Reveal Your Heart

As a leader by occupation, in authority of over 70 women, I strive to realistically evaluate my strengths and weaknesses frequently. I ask myself everyday “what could I do differently to be more effective or efficient”. “How are my actions affecting the results and do they benefit the overall goals?”

I don’t see this thoughtful investigation happening daily in the lives of most Christians regarding their walk with Christ. Instead, and myself included, I see excuses, blame, disregard or just plain denial. We hide behind the fear of people seeing the real us. The human side. The side God forgives but other people don’t. Just be real. If we are real with ourselves God can conform and transform our inner man (heart). But it’s our lack of authenticity that hinders Christ’s work in our lives. We would rather sit in our own mess than realize we stink and allow God to help.

Are we truly aware of the depths of our heart (inner man) and all things lurking around in there?
How do you know what is truly in your heart? We all like to believe we are good. The truth is that the Bible is the only standard by which we must be measured.
Are we delivered from every wrong sin in our heart at salvation? Or are we being delivered? A constant, continual growth as we mature in Christ?

Imagine an old fashion water well. To draw water requires a bucket tied to the end of a rope. The water is far below the surface. You can’t see the water. Is it good? Is it bitter? Let down the bucket and draw up some water from the well. What did you get?

Prov 23:7 (KJV) For as he thinketh in his heart, so is he

That is the same as the well of your “heart”. Your thoughts come from your heart. They guide your actions and your words. Is it good? Or bitter?

What determines the out-flow of your heart?

1. What you put in is what you get out. What is put in the water determines how it will taste.

I see people who have deep hurts and unforgiveness lurking in their hearts. For whatever reason they pretend it’s not there or don’t realize it’s there. Large walls are built up around their heart. The walls hide what is deep inside. You know what is inside by your thoughts and actions.

Here is a simplistic view: If the thoughts are hurtful you are hurt. If the thoughts are unforgiving you have not forgiven. If the thoughts are bitter you have a root of bitterness which stems from unforgiveness. If the thoughts are impatient you are impatient in your heart. If your thoughts are sinful your carnal self needs to be sacrificed a little more. James 1:19-20 “…slow to become angry, for man’s anger does not bring about the righteous life God desires” So if your thoughts and words are anger that does not please God. James 1:21 says to “get rid of moral filth” so anger is moral filth and evil.

Verse 22 says “Do not merely listen to the word and so deceive yourselves. Do what it says.”

On the flip side: if your thoughts are loving you have love in your heart. If your thoughts are patient you have patience, etc. Will your thoughts always be perfect? Probably not. But we should always be striving to have the mind of Christ.

2. What you allow to stay will poison your heart. Cleanse your heart by renewing your mind with the Word of God.

Rom 12:12 “Be transformed by the renewing of your mind”

2 Cor 4:16 “our inner man is being renewed day by day”

Col. 3:10 – “the new man is being renewed to a true knowledge…”

Titus 3:5 – “renewing by the Holy Spirit”

How is it that we have the bad thoughts and then in the moments later have good thoughts? Paul said:

Romans 7:21-23 (NIV) So I find this law at work: Although I want to do good, evil is right there with me. 22 For in my inner being I delight in God’s law; 23 but I see another law at work in me, waging war against the law of my mind and making me a prisoner of the law of sin at work within me.

Blindly, I lived for years completely deceived. I didn’t out-right sin (as we would label sin) but I had bitterness, unforgiveness, regret, pride, severe insecurities, selfishness, self-reliance, anger, hate, greed, envy, strife, judgemental, critical, vanity ….the list was long. I am still dealing with some of these. Remember, we are being saved, formed, tried like silver. This is not an immediate, microwave experience.

Proverbs 4:23 Keep thy heart with all diligence; for out of it are the issues of life.

All that junk was in my heart, so it came out. It was evident in my conversation. My self opinions. My interactions with others. My interactions with God.

I judged. I would say “I forgive” but hold long lists in my head of past wrongs. Some people can never get over harmful actions of others. God can heal all things. Even deep-rooted, long time hurt and pain.

1st step is always forgiveness

Don’t underestimate the power of forgiveness. Forgiveness applies the redemptive power of the blood of Jesus Christ that was shed just for you. Applied to your heart and your circumstance it heals the pain, covers the wound and stops the enemy’s work.

Many times deep hurt or long term regret can poison a heart. Forgiveness as Jesus commands is the only answer. Forgive yourself and forgive others. Accept forgiveness because it is freely given to you.

True forgiveness is evident when the event no longer haunts you in your thoughts. When you can think of the incident with no remorse, anger or bitterness indicates forgiveness.

How do you forgive when it’s just too hard?

1. Confess before God “I choose to forgive, work it in my heart until it is complete.” “I choose to forgive myself and  ______(fill in the blank)”

2. “I ask forgiveness for not forgiving as you have commanded me to”

3. “I accept the work of forgiveness in my heart”

2nd step is to ask God for help

Please pray and allow the Holy Spirit to show you the “issues” of your heart. Start by listening to your thoughts and the words you use. If they do not line up with the examples of godly living and speech exemplified in the Bible then know you just found an issue. Congratulations!

Phil 4:8 Finally, brothers, whatever is true, whatever is noble, whatever is right,
whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is admirable–if anything is
excellent or praiseworthy–think about such things.

1 Corinthians 13:4-8 Love is patient and kind; love does not envy or boast; it is not arrogant or rude. It does not insist on its own way; it is not irritable or resentful; it does not rejoice at wrongdoing, but rejoices with the truth. Love bears all things, believes all things, hopes all things, endures all things.

1. Pray for the Holy Spirit to reveal your own darkness in your heart and it’s root cause.

2. Think on what, who or where it started.

3. Forgive yourself and others out loud in prayer for each issue revealed.

4. Pray for strength and wisdom to guard your heart – “keep your heart with diligence”

5. Don’t beat yourself up for every slip. Your Heavenly Father will not. Just be quick to repent and be careful to watch the cause of the slip up.

%d bloggers like this: