DELIBERATELY PURSUING GOD
THE MIGHTY WEAPON OF PRAISE
A well known advice columnist was asked to name the most common problem in the lives of her audience and the answer far above all other problems was fear. We need not waste our time battling what is trying to “spook us” but rather invest our energy into learning about God’s truth! Would it not be better to disconnect the wires to our panic button than to live under its control? If we allow fear to be planted and dominate our mind, we can actually reinforce its power and control over us by “believing” how hopeless we are. In this common deception our free-will thoughts can reinforce a negative agreement by confirming the lie – which can alter the course of our destiny.
The next time we are facing a battle and would prefer to pull the blanket over our head, I would like to remind us all to run through a simple test. Have you ever thought how a good indicator of whether or not you are walking in the Holy Spirit when being attacked – hinges on our reaction to the assault? If trusting God has already been learned and secured within our being, we will be ready to stand in HIS strength and our positive reaction will be automatic. But being depressed with worry and regarding the dark clouds of impossibility is not only a DEFEATED outlook but reveals our level of doubt in God’s word! The Lord never panics about the unknown and if we trust Him – we can know that “He is aware of everything we are going through and knows how to “fix it.” Stand back and see your situation not through the eyes that are connected with your brain but with your spirit man through the reality of the Holy Spirit.
What does this have to with worship? It is the difference between “teaching and leading others” about living for God and “personally” abiding as an overcomer in Jesus Christ. How can we lead others and preach the victorious Kingdom message if we do not allow this revelation to be incorporated into our own life? The word hypocrite means, “actor” as in pretending to be someone you are not. The church stage and pulpit is not the place for hypocrites that put on a religious “show”, but for battle-tested leaders that are learning to put what they are singing, praying, prophesying and preaching into practice.
Romans chapter 8 verses 15-16, say’s “For you have not received the spirit of bondage again to fear; but you have received the Spirit of adoption, whereby we cry, Abba, Father. The Spirit itself bares witness with our spirit, that we are the children of God.” God is saying we must, “once and for all” understand that we are NOT in bondage but free to live boldly and walk in complete victory. The word “Abba” is another less formal word similar to “Daddy” that communicates personal closeness. The Lord is saying we can call God our daddy because Jesus has defeated ALL fear. No longer do we need to be afraid of man or the devil but let us rejoice in the blessings of sensitivity and discernment to respond in HIS power to our obstacles. We can run to Him with any problem and are assured that He is always there to help us live victoriously.
Fear always tries to convince us what we’re not, what we can’t have and what we cannot do. Our normal reaction to fear is panic, stress, confusion, worry, anxiety and dread because this is how our old nature is wired. We have a complete set of fleshly attributes that are connected to our emotions and unless our mind is transformed we will go with them every time. God knows that if our mind is not transformed and renewed in His word we will never experience spiritual victory. “For though we walk in the flesh, we do not war after the flesh: For the weapons of our warfare are not carnal, but mighty through God to the pulling down of strongholds; Casting down imaginations, and every high thing that exalts itself against the knowledge of God, and bringing into captivity every thought to the obedience of Christ.” II Corinthians 10:3-5. The Lord is commanding us to “cast down” the natural thoughts of “I can’t” and transfer our energy into a faith confession of “I can do all things through Christ who strengthens me.” If we really believe that God wants us to live as triumphant Kingdom warriors in this life then we should thank Him and PRAISE Him NOW in the battle we are facing! Praise, prayer and faith are spiritual weapons!
Comprehending how to listen and test the spirits is crucial if we desire to be led by God’s voice. The Lord will always come to us in love because we are His children and He wants to strengthen us with positive thoughts of “I am for you, so who can be against you?” What kind of Father would be cruel, impatient, harsh, critical and negative toward His child? In first John chapter 4 and verse one, we see the instruction to not trust every thought or influence but to try the spirits to prove what is from God and what is not. Knowing God’s direction is not rolling the dice of chance but comes from listening to His voice. God reveals the strategy and depends on us to execute!
Let us look at a very powerful story that gives us a wonderful example of how God expects us to react as a result of knowing who He is and who we are in Him. In II Chronicles chapter 20 we see a huge gathering of the tribe of Judah and as the presence of the Lord is in the midst of the congregation a prophet named Jehazial is anointed to speak and say’s in verse 15-19, “Listen, all you people of Judah and inhabitants of Jerusalem, and you king Jehoshaphat, thus saith the Lord unto you, be not afraid nor dismayed by reason of this great multitude (that is coming); for the battle is not yours, but God’s. Tomorrow go down against them: behold, they come up by the cliff of Ziz; and you will find them at the end of the brook, before the wilderness of Jeruel. Ye will not need to fight in this battle: set yourselves, stand still and see the salvation of the Lord with you, O Judah and Jerusalem: fear not, neither be surprised; tomorrow go out against them: for the Lord will be with you. And Jehoshaphat bowed his head with his face to the ground: and all Judah and the inhabitants of Jerusalem fell before the Lord, WORSHIPPING the Lord. And the Levites, of the children of the Kohathites, and of the children of the Korhites, stood up to PRAISE the Lord God of Israel with a LOUD voice on High.”
In verse 20 we see the king exhorting the people to believe and have faith in God and the prophetic promise. Let us continue the story in Verse 21, “He appointed SINGERS unto the Lord, that should PRAISE the beauty of holiness, as they went out BEFORE THE ARMY, and to say, PRAISE THE LORD: for His mercy endures forever. And when they began to SING and to PRAISE, the Lord set ambushes and confusion against the children of Ammon, Moab, and mount Seir, which were come against Judah; and they were destroyed.” Praise God! The armies began to fight each other and as God’s people watched they were astonished to see that the enemy imploded on itself and there was not left one alive. Glory be to God! And we also notice it took three days to gather the spoils of riches and precious jewels as an added blessing for His children.
God is saying when you watch all of the negativity going on in the world and you “feel” troubled and discouraged, pray for those who need the Lords help and in faith SHOUT the victory!
When you get some bad news and you feel the devil breathing down your neck, fall on your knees and call upon the God of your salvation and KNOW that nothing can separate you from His love!
When darkness tries to flood your soul and whispers his poisonous lies of despair, gloom, sadness and depression, put on your dancing shoes and the garment of praise and prove to the devil you BELIEVE what you know!
The good news of the gospel becomes a hallelujah party when we get a hold of the revelation of our identity in Christ and how the enemy actually begins to fear US when we become a pure vessel that POURS out God’s PRAISES! Worship releases our faith in Jesus and our love for Jesus, and these powerful spiritual weapons will always cause the devil to flee!
Of course you will not always FEEL like praising God when arrows are flying over your head, because the flesh will always side with the mind, but sacrifice your emotions and confess God’s word WITH YOUR SPIRIT! It is our responsibility to stand and fight against the spirit of heaviness by embracing the Lord’s joy of gladness, confidence and strength and releasing it back to Him in praise!
Letting go and letting God means we will NOT allow fear to rule on the throne of our heart. Christ identifies Himself so closely with His people that when they release praise to Him, He is actually incorporated into our worship. Exalting Him in spirit and truth magnifies Christ and floods our being with the PRESENCE and GLORY of the Fathers character, bringing hope, peace, power, courage, miracles, revelation, prophecy and edification to the entire body. “Victory in Jesus” will become more than a song to those who become determined to soak and be saturated in God NOW!