Breaking Strongholds

Breaking Strongholds

We live in this world, but we don’t act like its people or fight our battles with the weapons of this world. Instead, we use God’s power that can destroy fortresses. We destroy arguments and every bit of pride that keeps anyone from knowing God. We capture people’s thoughts and make them obey Christ.

– II Corinthians 10:3-5

STRONGHOLD: Anything that exalts itself against God’s Word.  It contradicts the Truth.  It contradicts what God says about you.  It goes against the will of God for your life!

a)      A stronghold begins with a thought, or two or three.

b)      A negative thought unchecked…leads to vain imaginations…and that’s how strongholds are born.

How to Break Strongholds:

1. Go to the source—your thought life.

Proverbs 23:7- For as he thinks in his heart, so is he. He says to you, “Eat and drink!” But his heart is not with you.

a)      We have to evaluate our thought life.  What wrong thoughts have  we accepted and believed that led to this stronghold?

2. Let go of the past pain.

Isaiah 43:18-19 Do not remember the things that have happened before. Do not think about the things of the past. See, I will do a new thing. It will begin happening now. Will you not know about it? I will even make a road in the wilderness, and rivers in the desert.

a)      FORGET the past!

b)      Don’t DWELL on it anymore!

c)      This is a NEW day!

3. Control your thoughts.

Ephesians 6:12-13 Our fight is not with people. It is against the leaders and the powers and the spirits of darkness in this world. It is against the demon world that works in the heavens. 13 Because of this, put on all the things God gives you to fight with. Then you will be able to stand in that sinful day. When it is all over, you will still be standing.

a)       Take every thought CAPTIVE and make it obedient to Christ.

b)       We have to deliberately choose what we allow our minds to dwell on.

c)       Decide Right Now:

d)      I am finished with this battle!

e)       I’m not fighting this stronghold the rest of my life!

f)        I am not going to let suicidal thoughts get the best of me!

g)       I am not going to allow poverty to reign in my life!

h)       I am not going to allow bitterness to control my life!

i)         Divine Weapons To Demolish Negative Thoughts—You Have:

j)         The Word of God

k)       The Name of Jesus

l)         Power and Authority over Satan

m)     At The First Sign Of A Negative Thought:

1. Stop and acknowledge that the thought is not from God.

2. Make a decision: I am not going to take Satan’s bait! I am not going to dwell on this

ungodly thought.

3. Resist Satan in the Name of Jesus!

4. Replace that thought with God’s thoughts about you.

a)     Don’t identify yourself with tempting thoughts.

b)     Instead of turning on yourself and attacking your self-esteem when thoughts come—turn

it around and attack the lies!  Deal with the real culprit that is a lie of Satan.

4. Be PERSISTENT!

A stronghold doesn’t develop overnight.   So you have to be consistent and persistent until you see the victory

…Picture of Grace….

Grace – Grace is God’s unmerited favor. It is kindness from God we don’t deserve. There is nothing we have done, nor we can ever do to earn this favor. It is a gift from God. Grace is divine assistance given to humans for their regeneration (rebirth) or sanctification; a virtue coming from God; a state of sanctification enjoyed through divine favor

If there was anyone in the bible that understood grace, it would be the apostle Paul, he started out as the chief of sinners, and he ended up the chief of the apostles. The way he made the transition from the chief of sinners to the chief of the apostles was because of GRACE.
Someone once said that if you ever seen a turtle on a fence post he didn’t get there by himself,. So if you ever seen a saint of God seating in church with there bible and there life straighten out there addictions broken and there name written in the lambs book of LIFE.. You know this that they did not get there by themselves or if you have ever seen someone praising God in freedom you know this they didn’t get there by themselves. You can know that God and his grace lifted them up to where they are at. You see Grace is a gift that gets us to the place that we could not get on our own.
The estimate of any object is determined by what a person is willing to pay for that object. When God looked at us, silver and Gold wasn’t enough to pay the price for us. That our worth was more than silver and gold that it was worth his only son’s blood being shed, and if you ever wondered if God loved you, Calvary is God’s answer. You have great worth to him.

In 2 Corinthians 2:8-9 Paul is talking about sufficient grace three times he asked God, get me out of this trial, and three times God said my grace is sufficient for you, I will not remove it, because I am teaching you something I am allowing you to go through the darkness there is treasures out of this darkness, Jesus says what I teach you in the darkness you will proclaim in the light ! (Matthew 10:27). Your going through something and you don’t understand and it’s so dark and you almost want to give up and your on the brink of surrender and walking away from everything. But you have to understand Jesus said that I will talk to you in the darkness about things that you will proclaim in the light. You see the law came by Moses but the grace by Jesus Christ.
In John 8:3-11 there is this woman caught in the act of adultery, meaning since she was caught in the act she was probably barely clothed and dragged in humiliation and thrown down at the feet of Jesus, and the Pharisees said Moses and the law says stone her. Well you see one problem with judgmental people is they don’t know when to shut up. They hear something and They will text and talk on there cell phone about it until the phone is dead and than go home and get on the house phone and talk and talk, cause they don’t know when to shut up and they talk to much. You see if the Pharisees would have just stopped talking and said Moses and the law says stone her. They could have picked up rocks and been in line with the law. And Jesus may have watched it happen. But they talked to much, and they turned to Jesus and said what do you say Jesus?.. But at that moment Jesus made a transition out of the law that came by Moses, but grace and truth came by JESUS, he stepped in Grace stepped in and looked at the woman and listened to her accuser and than.. he stooped down and began touching dirt, maybe the reason he started touching the dirt was a sign to the woman who felt so dirty that he didn’t mind getting his hands dirty to rescue her, that when you cant get to him he will stoop down and touch dirty messed up shameful filthy lives with his nail scared hands that he isn’t so high and holy that he cant get his hands dirty. That’s enough but than he stood up and said if any of you with out sin throw the first stone, they all dropped the stones and walked away, and Jesus stood and he said where are your accusers now? And she said there none. The only one who could have accused her because he was the only sinless one didn’t have any rocks in his pocket. The bible said as though Jesus thought she still didn’t get it. John 8:8 says he stooped down again, put his hands in the dirt as to say to her that I don’t care how many times I have to stoop, I don’t care how many times I have to get my hands dirty , or how many times you do this over and over I’m going to stoop down and I’m not afraid to get my hands dirty Im not afraid to touch the dirt in your life because I love you so much I’ll keep stooping down and getting my hands dirty until I get you saved.
Sometimes we think God, I’ve messed up to bad you cant use me, but you see he stooped down and through his basin of mercy he has poured his grace on you to clean you up. He doesn’t care about your past the messes you have made. He is offering his grace, he paid a price for you and he will turn the bad in to good for his glory.

You see there is NOTHING that you can do to separate you from the love of God. And its not what you have done but its about what Jesus has done he has stepped in and he gave his life, so you may live. Don’t let your past hold you back from where God wants to take you, because by his grace we are saved. And by his Grace my sins are washed away.
God can and will move in any circumstance, just give it to him and let his grace set you free.

Something is really wrong with the Church….

Something is wrong in the Church today. I don’t say that lightly, or as someone who thrives on criticizing everyone else so as to establish my own spiritual superiority, or as someone who is feeding on sour grapes because things aren’t the way I would like them. I say it because of how many people I meet on a daily basis who are discouraged by traditional church and have chosen not to attend anymore.
Everywhere I turn, I hear people complaining about the same thing. This isn’t something localized to a particular area or limited to a certain social strata or denomination  I hear this from all sorts of people, many with impeccable spiritual credentials.  I have talked to pastors who have spent decades in ministry who are now questioning the vibrancy of the Church. Others just off the streets, armed with little more than a spiritual hunger, who refuse to attend church, not because they don’t believe, but because they are repelled by what they see, they are tired of seeing “Christians” and”leaders” in the church who are out looking like the world and acting like the world, and than acting holier than thou on Sunday mornings.
No matter how you view this issue, no matter what position you have, no matter what church you belong to, you have to admit that something is wrong.
We are supposed to be the salt of the Earth, as something that gives flavor to make a meal taste good. But when we are not attracting the lost, but rather repelling them, then our salt has lost its savor. What makes it even worse is that we are even repelling the saved.
There are opposing extremes to this issue, true, but shouldn’t the middle be closer to the truth? We see on one hand the churches that are so loose and “loving” that they excuse any sin or misconduct, including homosexuality and adultery in the church. On the other hand, there are those in their religious zeal have taken it upon themselves to proclaim their self-righteous judgments on every church around them. Somewhere they read that the Word of God is a hammer that breaks the rock in pieces, so they’ve traded in their fishing pole for a sledgehammer.
But in the middle, where we hope to find something that is more balanced, instead we find a modern church that is socially based, smooth and sensual, sophisticated, and presented like a Hollywood production so that it will appeal to the crowds who flock there. Listen, if it walks like a duck, and quacks like a duck, and looks like a duck, then it is most likely a duck, and not a church.
And what, may I ask, ever happened to the Gospel of power? If our churches are supposed to be so good, then why are so many people turned off by them? If the fire that is burning in our churches was from off the altar of God instead of a Wizard of Oz production, then I can guarantee you that hungry souls would be drawn by the Spirit of God, but instead, they are turning away. Something is wrong!
Where are the old-fashioned preachers who used to preach under the anointing of power, and relied not their stack of disheveled notes, but on the power of God to deliver the message? Our pastors today follow the social and marketing formulas they were taught in college and present a Gospel in a multi-media fashion with 7 bullet points, a poem, and three jokes and Worship Leaders singing songs they like, they are the most popular all about “me” and leave Jesus out. Something is wrong!
What happened to the strong calls for repentance that brought thousands down to the altar to repent and ask Jesus Christ to save their souls? This is the litmus test for Christianity; it is the essence of the Cross; it is the Great Commission that Jesus commanded us with.  Something is wrong!
Where did all the miracles go? Not the weak excuses of “if it is God’s will …”, or a reliance on a “gradual healing” with a doctor’s appointment in hand, but the instant manifestation of the power of God? Jesus said to heal the sick, and preach the Gospel. Was He just kidding? Did He really mean it? Yes, He meant it! If there is not a flowing of miracle healing’s in your church, then I’m sorry, something is wrong!
Where is the outpouring of the Holy Ghost? Do we even know what it means anymore to feel the presence of the Spirit of God descend on a service and fill up the room with holiness? Or do we just think that our party atmosphere of excitement when someone plays a cool song, or the excitement that we get when some charismatic speaker works the crowd is the Holy Ghost? It’s been so long since we’ve seen the real thing that we don’t even know what it is anymore. Something is wrong!
Something of deep substance is missing in our church today. But we’ve become so sophisticated and enamored with our social Gospel that we don’t even realize that something is wrong. We are left like Gideon, threshing his wheat in secret by the wine-press of God because our fields have been taken over by a worldly church. And we wonder out loud to the angel, “What happened to the miracles our fathers have told us about?”
Yeah, that’s my question too. What happened?
When we lost our fear of God, we lost our power in God. And at that point, as it says in Isaiah 29, the Book became sealed unto us so that we no longer even grasp how far we have fallen. We read it, but we can’t see past the surface of the page.
I believe in the four R’s, the four steps to revival – Recognition, Repentance, Righteousness, and Revival. The first step to Revival is to realize that we don’t have one, to recognize that something is desperately wrong with our churches, and that we have lost something precious in our pursuit of a super-sophisticated modern Church. We’ve lost it, and we need to get it back…

I locked up my …

I locked up my heart and I put on a show, I let the business of life be a wall so nobody gets close.. Well I got a lot done, yeah, I’m so type A, but I’m finding arm’s length is a safe but lonely place…

So, I’m gonna choose to reach out choose to lay down all of the fear that I’ve been hiding… choose to be brave though my heart’s afraid, to be a part of Your Kingdom rising, God, I’m done running from the reason that you sent your Son….So, I will choose to love

Maybe I’ll hurt, maybe I’ll bruise….Maybe I’ll cry….. Maybe I’ll lose…. Still I will choose to love

Pride, Death, and A Great Redeemer

Great Blog!!!

Above All Else

“Stop trying to do something for Me. Just let Me be your Redeemer.”

This is the message I sense God is continually speaking to me lately.  Oh what a hard lesson for me to learn. There is something in me that desperately wants to do something amazing for God, to live a life that makes Him proud and impresses Him and others.  If I’m being gut-level honest, I just want to be awesome on my own and have some bit of glory for myself.  I don’t really like to live in the reality that apart from Christ I can do nothing. And because my Father loves me, He has set up circumstances in my life to sanctify this sinful tendency out of me.

Last year, I studied the Pharisees and realized that I am just like them.  The pride in my heart mirrors theirs, these people whom Jesus so…

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I breathe in, I breathe out…

“The letters of the name of God in Hebrew… are infrequently pronounced Yahweh. But in truth they are inutterable….

This word {YHWH} is the sound of breathing.

The holiest name in the world, the Name of Creator, is the sound of your own breathing. That these letters are unpronounceable is no accident. Just as it is no accident that they are also the root letters of the Hebrew verb ‘to be’… God’s name is name of Being itself.”

~Rabbi Lawrence Kushner

Source – Ann Voskamp

 http://www.aholyexperience.com/ann-voskamp/

Behind the Scenes

“Child of God, wake up! Week after week desperate people come to our homes and services looking for God. We talk a good game and we flaunt the trappings and traditions of our religion, but when they pull back the curtain, what do they find? Is there a God enthroned in your house? Is there a God enthroned in your church? Or are we only offering the world an old man who practices theatrics? I want the glory of God in the Church!”

– Zach Neese
How to Worship a King

He is… A Strong God…

‘Ah, Lord God! It is you who have made the heavens and the earth by your great power and by your outstretched arm! Nothing is too hard for you. – Jeremiah 32:17

He is a Strong God

“Sing to God, sing in praise of his name,extol him who rides on the clouds;rejoice before him—his name is the Lord. A father to the fatherless, a defender of widows, is God in his holy dwelling.

God sets the lonely in families, he leads out the prisoners with singing; but the rebellious live in a sun-scorched land.

 When you, God, went out before your people, when you marched through the wilderness, the earth shook, the heavens poured down rain, before God, the One of Sinai, before God, the God of Israel.

You gave abundant showers, O God; you refreshed your weary inheritance. Your people settled in it, and from your bounty, God, you provided for the poor.”

– Psalms 68: 4-10

Unconditional Love

Definition of UNCONDITIONAL LOVE

1: not conditional or limited : absoluteunqualified, Complete Love

“Then the world will know that you [God the Father] sent me [Jesus Christ] and will understand that you love them as much as you love me” (John 17:23, NLT).

Did you catch that? God loves you as much as He loves Jesus! That’s almost too much to even comprehend!

Scripture records that God’s love “never fails [never fades out or becomes obsolete or comes to an end]” (1 Corinthians 13:8, AMP). His love for you can never weaken. It’s impossible. His love for you isn’t based on your behavior but on His faithfulness.

God’s love for us is so all encompassing that we simply cannot comprehend its scope.

“For God expressed His love for the world in this way: He gave His only Son so that whoever believes in Him will not face everlasting destruction, but will have everlasting life.” (John 3:16, the voice).

Why did God give Jesus? The answer is simple: to purchase us back. In Genesis Adam gave himself, and consequently all his offspring (including you and me), to a new lord when he heeded Satan. Adam disobeyed God and separated himself and his descendants from Him. But since God loved each of us so much, He wasn’t willing to assign us the same fate as Satan and his angels.

God purchased our relationship back with Him by giving Jesus in our place. Jesus paid the complete price for mankind’s disobedience to God. He took our judgment.

The price of our soul is so expensive that nothing else could have bought us back besides Jesus Himself. “God bought you with a high price” (1 Corinthians 6:20, NLT). “Visualize this: His blood freely flowing down the cross, setting us free! We are forgiven for our sinful ways by the richness of His grace” (Ephesians 1:7, the voice translation).

No person or thing is more valuable to God than Jesus. Yet, God saw our value equal to that of what He prized most. Now here is the amazing thing If you and I had been worth one cent less to God than the value of His Son, He wouldn’t have purchased us because God would never make an unprofitable deal. (Recall the above scripture, “God bought you with a high price.”) A bad purchase is when you give something of more value for something of less value.

In God’s eyes, Jesus’ value is the same as yours! Do you see how important you are to God? This is why Jesus prays, “You love them as much as you love me” (John 17:23, NLT).