Stand Firm!

man-praying“…And having done all, stand firm.” (Ephesians 6:13)

4 times in this passage the apostle Paul emphasizes the word ‘Stand’. Sometimes the only thing that will overcome the onslaught of Satan is to simply hold your ground and stand firm. Standing firm has a defensive posture to it. Life will sometimes feel like the enemy of your soul is throwing everything at you to distract you and ultimately destroy you. His attack can come in multiple forms, including, sexual temptation, condemnation, offense, fear and intimidation to name a few. Remember, the primary battlefield Satan attempts to conquer you in, is in your mind. When his attack comes, don’t merely fight it in the natural with positive thinking but resist the devil by submitting to God and using the spiritual weapons God has supplied to you. These weapons include praising God, acting in faith, meditating on and declaring the truth of Gods Word, choosing the pathway of peace versus conflict and finally standing firm. The next time you find yourself in a firefight with Satan, utilize the arsenal of weapons at your disposal but after having done all, stand firm, submit to God, resist the devil and he will flee from you.

The Devil is a Liar!

From Genesis 3, back at the beginning of creation, the devil has been lying and casting doubt on the truth of God’s Word in our lives. His strategy hasn’t changed and he’s still undermining people’s faith with his constant condemnation, negativity and hopelessness.

Satan’s whole agenda is to steal, kill and destroy anything that resembles the life of God’s Spirit in you and at work in our world. Never has there been a more important era of human history than now to know, think and speak God’s truth about ourselves. We are bombarded daily with hundreds of mixed messages. Deciphering God’s truth can be a challenge without being intentional.

Satan is an anchor that is always pulling you back down from heading out into the adventure that God invites all of us onto. If you entertain the negative thoughts, words and opinions that weigh you down too long, it will become your new norm and limit your capacity to believe for God’s impossible to work in your world.

The challenge is if we haven’t undergone a renewed mindset then we don’t so easily distinguish between the lies of the enemy and our own thoughts. The truth of God’s Word really does set us free and we need to immerse ourselves in a daily diet of God’s truth so that we will not be conformed to the pattern of this world but be transformed by the renewing of our minds.

Pay attention to the messages you entertain in your brain and heart on a daily basis. As you think, so you are. What negative self-limiting ideas have you allowed to preoccupy your thinking? It’s time to uproot and replace with God’s truth!

The Oracle!

Prayer is not an event, it’s a lifestyle!

kneeling_in_prayerPrayer is becoming the core instinct of my life. It’s my first response and my last thought. Prayer is something I have learned as a result of being positioned time and time again in situations where I had nothing else to rely upon except God.

Prayer is 2 way communication with God. It’s both talking and listening. It’s a dialogue, not just a monologue. Prayer is partnering with God. If we don’t, he won’t. God is sovereign but history recalls that he does limit himself to our prayers at times.

If there was one primary principle to accessing the supernatural power of God in my life, it’s daily prayer. The secret of the great generals of the faith throughout the ages has been the daily commitment to getting in God’s face and calling upon his name.

Prayer is not an event, it’s a lifestyle. Prayer is oxygen to our spirit. It is the air we breathe, not just the gasp we take when drowning under the pressures of life. Prayer is the supply line to the front lines of the spiritual battles we face in our lives. Paul said, ‘We don’t wrestle against flesh and blood but against the principalities and powers of darkness in the heavenly realm (Eph 6).’ If the enemy can cut off the supply line to the front line, he can limit the firepower needed to overcome him.

The one concern of the devil is to stop Christians from praying. He fears nothing from prayer-less toil, prayer-less study or prayer-less ministry. He laughs at our efforts, mocks at our wisdom but he trembles when we pray.

Prayer unveils and reveals. Prayer accesses God’s heart and mind giving you insight into His remedies to combat the challenges you face. With all of these benefits why wouldn’t you want to make prayer more central in your life?

A.W. Tozer once said, ‘The greatest key to prayer is simply praying.’

For all of our books on prayer, sermons about prayer and exhortations to pray, there comes a point when you simply must sit still and start praying.

Nothing will replace it and nothing compares to it. Prayer is multi-dimensional. Prayer is worship. Prayer is conversation. Prayer is fellowship with the Spirit. Prayer is clarifying. Prayer purges your soul of impurities. Prayer relaxes the body and stimulates your mind. Prayer unlocks the supernatural realm. Prayer is woven into the fabric of humanity and prayer is the master-key to relationship with God. It’s time to pray!

The Oracle!

Refuse to Lie Down!

One of the principle weapons Satan uses to disable God’s people is discouragement. Every person I’ve ever met and conversed with about their personal life journey have got reasons to feel discouraged enough to want to quit. Sadly, some people do quit and give up. Thankfully, others refuse to lie down and inspire us by their example.

We live in a fallen world that is characterised by selfishness, doubt, pessimism, discouragement and darkness. The kingdom of God is counter-cultural and is marked by generosity, faith, optimism, hope, encouragement and light. If your life is going to reflect the kingdom of God more than the kingdom of this world, you will have to be intentional about it because your flesh will naturally default to the spirit of this age.

I wrestle with discouragement a lot. It can come over me like a dark cloud and blanket me in such a way that it feels oppressive. The only way I break through it, is not by positive self-talk but by pressing into the sanctuary of God’s presence. In his presence I’m reminded that nothing is too hard for him. In his presence, my joy returns and I find the strength to keep believing, keep moving forward and keep positioning myself for greater things to come. God’s presence is a tower of strength and when we distance ourselves from him, we become a target for the devil to take us out with discouragement.

Too many of us accept the lies of the enemy too readily. Too many of us allow Satan to steamroll us with a barrage of condemnation and accusation, as if we were utterly powerless. But the truth is, we are powerful in God and his purpose for us (Ephesians 1).

I encourage you to draw a line in the sand and make a decision to stop entertaining the discouraging string of ideas Satan sends your way. Stop the broken record of wrong thinking and renew your mind with God-Truth. Life is fleeting and days pass by so quickly. Don’t give your best thoughts and years to the enemy of your soul. Your better than that and Gods calling on your life is too precious to let go of just because you’re in a season of discouragement. Refuse to lie down.

The Oracle!