God is my strength. I rely on Him 24/7. There is no time we are not in communication. I call on Him in praise for the beauty around me, for keeping me and guiding me. I ask for His strength during challenging moments, and in His love in the good times and bad.
He is my refuge. He keeps me safe and sheltered from danger, pursuit, and harm. I call on him in times of need only to find He is standing there waiting; upon contact (with Him) I feel the peace that He provides. A peace that is difficult to explain in everyday terms. The Bible describes this as the peace that is greater than our understanding.
“And the peace of God, which transcends all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus.” ~ Philippians 4:6, NIV
It is during this peace that the chaos unravels. His strength overrides the fear the chaos wrought upon my very being. Resting in His peace, I recite, ‘I fear not because the Lord is my strength and through Him all things are possible. Through Christ fear dissolves. Through Him, crooked ways are made straight. Through Him, I gain clarity and sight. Through Him I become aware that He is establishing the way out of no way. Through Him, I recognize who I am in Christ. I am His childthrough adoption.’
The Lord is my strength, my refuge, and my helper, without Him, no thing is a good.
Without Him, I am weak. Without Him, I am engulfed in chaos. Without Him, I am lost seeking asylum at the wrong port of entry. Without Him, there is no peace.
“Then, because you belong to Christ Jesus, God will bless you with peace that no one can completely understand. And, this peace will control the way you think and feel.” ~ Philippians 4:7, CEV
Being fearless in the natural is foolish. Being fearless in the spirit is supernatural. The Lord is my life and my salvation. He is the stronghold of my life, whom shall I be afraid?
~ Lisa Blair
“The Lord is my light and my salvation— whom shall I fear?
The Lord is the stronghold of my life— of whom shall I be afraid? When the wicked advance against me to devour me, it is my enemies and my foes who will stumble and fall.
Though an army besiege me, my heart will not fear; though war break out against me, even then I will be confident.
One thing I ask from the Lord, this only do I seek: that I may dwell in the house of the Lord all the days of my life, to gaze on the beauty of the Lord and to seek him in his temple.
For in the day of trouble he will keep me safe in his dwelling; he will hide me in the shelter of his sacred tent and set me high upon a rock. Then my head will be exalted above the enemies who surround me; at his sacred tent I will sacrifice with shouts of joy; I will sing and make music to the Lord.” Psalm 27:1-6 NIV
Jesus humbled himself to the point of death to give us life. We should be able and willing to humble ourselves and, honestly, repent for our sins (stating what they are or were) and start anew (fresh). It is never too late, God forgives us when we repent, allowing us to move-on shackle free. Christ gave us the opportunity to rise above who we (presently) are. It is time to change our home location, we are in this world, but not of this world.
Go to a quiet place and speak to God, ask Him to forgive you. You choose the place. It could be in the midst of a train station, bar, standing on the corner in busy traffic. Just still yourself and pray. He will receive you wherever you are at the moment.
Feeling defeated is a human trait that Christians must overcome to become ambassadors for Christ.
~ Lisa Blair
Have you ever felt defeated? Paul wrote this letter to the disciples who were preaching about Jesus to crowds of non-believers. Their lives were being threatened, and they were beaten and jailed. Paul wanted the disciples to know that their efforts were not unnoticed by God and their rewards were forthcoming. He told them they would be hard pressed, but not crushed; they would often be perplexed, but should not despair; they would be persecuted, but God would not abandon them and; they would be struck down, but not destroyed.
“But now, GOD ’s Message, the God who made you in the first place, “Don’t be afraid, I’ve redeemed you. I’ve called your name. You’re mine. When you’re in over your head, I’ll be there with you. When you’re in rough waters, you will not go down. When you’re between a rock and a hard place, it won’t be a dead end— Because I am GOD, your personal God, The Holy of Israel, your Savior.” Isaiah 43:1-3 MSG
He encouraged them to continue to spread the Gospel, a ‘treasure’ because it contains rich truths, and are the blessing of the new covenant. The Gospel speaks to the riches of God and of Christ, of grace and of glory. He wanted to empower the disciples who were the vessels of the Word. Paul spoke to the disciples, we are not completely unlike them in that we are God’s ambassadors. We are today’s clay pots. They were the clay pots, many felt at a loss during these tribulations. Paul shared that even though they may have been at a loss as to what to say to the masses, they should not give up. Luke shared that God would give them the words to say when the time was right, Luke 12;12 – The Holy Spirit will give you the words to say at the moment when you need them. God also gives us the words to say in any situation in life, be it a speech at school, work, prayer group, or during family conversations.
“We are therefore Christ’s ambassadors, as though God were making his appeal through us. We implore you on Christ’s behalf: Be reconciled to God.”
2 Corinthians 5:20 NIV
We are all ambassadors. We each hold the rich truth of the Gospel and have been told to carry it with us and share the Word with all around us. God will never abandon us or forsake us. The Holy Spirit guides our words and actions, especially in times of doubt or fear.
“So be strong and courageous! Do not be afraid and do not panic before them (be terrified of them). For the Lord your God will personally go ahead of you. He will neither fail you nor abandon you.” Deuteronomy 31:6 NLT
Life has twists and turns. We can be figuratively or physically be stoned and struck down, but as Paul said, Christ survived the hardships, troubles, and frustrations that he faced. The disciples faced disappointments, exhaustion, harassment, mocking, and jeering standing by the side of Christ. Christ was mercilessly beaten, prodded and killed. Paul shares that there was a wearing effect of the ministry on Christ (he was very man and very God). Like Christ, the disciples experienced mental, emotional, and physical tolls.
We experience some form of the above in our personal and spiritual lives. Christ taught the disciples, and through adoption – taught us that we must deny ourselves, not gravitate to self, and put Him first. We must decrease, so He can increase. We must see Christ’s strength in all we do and rely on His strength to stand in the midst of unbelievers. Like the disciples, we cannot be defeated whilst acknowledging our humanness. The humanness that becomes a clay jar, an earthen vessel, housing the treasures of the Gospel through the Holy Spirit (who dwells in us), who leads us and guides us through life.
Images – YouVersion.Bible.com; New Boston Church of Christ
Resources – bible study tools.com; biblehub.com; preceptaustin.org
We are empowered to demolish Strongholds! Take action and create the change we want to see through prayer.
~ LISA BLAIR
2 Corinthians 10:4-5 sounds as if it was written for times such as this, and why not, it is a living document and is always relevant. It is timeless and is not bound by Greenwich Mean Time. Our battle is ongoing and will end when Christ returns, until that time we must fight.
4 The weapons we fight with are not the weapons of the world. On the contrary, they have divine power to demolish strongholds.5 We demolish arguments and every pretension that sets itself up against the knowledge of God, and we take captive every thought to make it obedient to Christ. 2 Cor 10:4-5 NIV
Sam Storms (Commentary, Taking Everything Thought Captive For Christ, 2 Cor. 10:4-6) opens, “We live in an age of angry atheism; not simply a casual and indifferent disregard for the existence of God but a militant opposition to all things religious.”
These scriptural verses are packed with power. The key words of this study are ‘divine’ and ‘demolish.’
God gave us the power to demolish strongholds. This harkens back to Ephesians warning that we are in battle as long as we live on earth. Paul explained the battle in military terms identifying our power in terms of armor. We should not take this lightly. The novel, Tale of Cities expresses this as living in the best of times and the worst of times. Today, the best of times is governed by our advancements in technology, ecology, and medicine. The worst of times is governed by Satan’s stronghold on all things earthly, twisting truth, and redefining humanity to destroy the earth.
We are in the worst of times because there is militant opposition to all things religious, and the best of times because there is an increasing number of people becoming Christians. We, Christians, have been given the responsibility to militarize ourselves, to put on the armor and demolish the strongholds of the evil one. God has given us the power to DEMOLISH STRONGHOLDS. We have DIVINE POWER. My question is why are we not using the power God has given us? I belong to a global organization, Bible Study Fellowship (BSF). Every member throughout the world collectively studies the same lesson, gaining understanding, wisdom, and knowledge about the Books of the Bible. It is important to mention here because it demonstrates that we can come into one accord if we choose. Just imagine if all Christians throughout the world held a common prayer vigil until we broke the spine of the evil one. We have the one tool that can change the tide of destruction but cannot come into one accord to accomplish this mission, God’s work.
Today, let us engage people in our sphere of influence to pick up the Sword of the Spirit and go to work. Change begins with one person. If each of us asks one other person to pray for peace and the strength to stand against the winds of political upheaval, social media, and inhumanity, we can begin to affect the change. We can use our divine power to counter the militant opposition to all things religious and demolish their strongholds on our global society.
Previous Posts on Similar Topics, this site and YoungChristianWarriors.com:
Be Strong in the Lord, 9/19/17
Fear Cannot Overwhelm Us, 3/21/19
2.2. Billion Christians Strong, 1/14/19
Demolishing Strongholds, 9/28/18
Greater than Kryptonite, 2/13/18
Liberation through Action, 4/17/18
Looking Back, Satan’s Web of Deception, Self Abuse, 8/29/18
Satan’s Cycles Our Experiences, 9/7/18
The Dark Times, 4/27/18
Today We Proclaim Change, /29/18
Prayers Break Through the Second Heaven, 9/4/18
Images – YouVersion. Bible.com. Roger Cole; Google.com
Scriptures – Biblegateway.com
Resources – Sam Storms Enjoying God. Samstorms.com; Biblegateway.com