When I was a child, one game I loved to play was hide and seek. I believe every child enjoyed playing that game at one time or another.
There was such enthusiasm and excitement while your friends or classmates scattered to find a place to hide while you counted and waited in anticipation to search for each friend which brought so much joy and laughter when you found them.
The Lord is often hidden in our lives until we come to a place where we decide to seek him with our own heart. Although, the Lord is always working behind the scenes, we often do not know what He is doing or planning in our lives. The Lord makes it very clear to “Trust the Lord with all your heart and lean not unto your own understanding, in all your ways acknowledge Him and He will direct your path.” Proverbs 3:5-6
Many of us, wonder through life, randomly, without acknowledging or asking the Lord for direction. As believers, we may allow Him into some areas of our lives but not fully allow Him to control every aspect of our lives.
The Lord wants to be a part of every area of your life. The deeper relationship you nurture with Him; the more He reveals himself to you. You begin to see life in new ways. Your choices begin to change and how you deal with challenges and obstacles shift.
Life has its difficulties, but you will not allow life circumstances to grab a hold of you in fear, doubt and despair. Even when you feel discouraged, you can speak the word of God or listen to worship music and the weight of burdens and frustration will lift off of you.
But without faith it is impossible to please him: for he that cometh to God must believe that he is, and that he is a rewarder of them that diligently seek him. Heb 11:6
You will become sensitive to the spirit as you continue your walk with Christ. He will nudge you in certain directions. He will cover you with a blanket of protection. He will open your eyes to his truth and reveal to you the mysteries of the Kingdom. You will begin to experience things that you know only the Lord could do. You will have a deep desire to please the Lord fully and not jeopardize your relationship by displeasing Him. You will be obedient to His laws and commandments and do His will without resistance. It’s not by the flesh but by His spirit.
“Not by might, nor by power, but by my Spirit, says the Lord.”
Having a zeal for Christ is within reach for every believer.
For the Bible forewarns us….
I know thy works, that thou art neither cold nor hot: I would thou wert cold or hot. So then because thou art lukewarm, and neither cold nor hot, I will spue thee out of my mouth.
You cannot have one foot in the world and one foot in the church. A double-minded man is unstable in all His ways. James 1:8
No man can serve two masters: for either he will hate the one, and love the other; or else he will hold to the one, and despise the other. Ye cannot serve God and mammon. Matt 6:24
We are moving into a shifting world where believers must have a solid foundation in Christ to be able to withstand the wiles of deception coming upon the earth. [Click link here]: 2 Chron 20:1-34
1 Peter 5:7-9
Casting all your care upon him; for he careth for you. Be sober, be vigilant; because your adversary the devil, as a roaring lion, walketh about, seeking whom he may devour: Whom resist stedfast in the faith, knowing that the same afflictions are accomplished in your brethren that are in the world.
He can only devour those who do not know the Lord and live a righteous, holy lifestyle. Once you’ve accepted the Lord as your Savior by faith, you are a daughter and son of the Most High. His hand of protection is upon your life to guide you into all truth, wisdom and knowledge.
The Lord is a consuming fire. Let us run under the shelter of the Almighty King. Let us seek Jesus with all passion and dedication. Seek the Lord while He can be found. The Lord is available and waiting. He does not wish anyone should perish. [Click the link here for reference]: 2 Chron 20:1-34
2 Peter 3:8-10
But, beloved, be not ignorant of this one thing, that one day is with the Lord as a thousand years, and a thousand years as one day. 9 The Lord is not slack concerning his promise, as some men count slackness; but is longsuffering to us-ward, not willing that any should perish, but that all should come to repentance. 10 But the day of the Lord will come as a thief in the night; in the which the heavens shall pass away with a great noise, and the elements shall melt with fervent heat, the earth also and the works that are therein shall be burned up.
The Lord is a just God and will meet you right where you are. So come with your wounds and brokenness. Come with your anxieties, doubts and fears. Come with your mistakes and confusion. Come with your pain and despair. Come with your anger and frustration. Just come!
I pray for those who are entering into your presence at this very moment. May you comfort their heart and mind. Please take away all their confusion, doubt, pain and toil in this life. Reveal to them your glory for the sacrifice you gave to each person as a gift of love. Help them to draw near to you and keep a hedge of protection over their families, loves ones, households, communities, finances, health and relationships. May a fresh wind of vitality, strength and peace be upon them as they seek you and rest in your presence for the revelation of Jesus Christ. Amen
The grace of the Lord Jesus Christ, and the love of God, and the communion of the Holy Ghost, be with you all.Amen. 2 Corth 13:14
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I will run the way of thy commandments, when thou shalt enlarge my heart. 33 Teach me, O Lord, the way of thy statutes; and I shall keep it unto the end.
Direct my steps by Your word, and let no iniquity have dominion over me.
O God, thou art my God; early will I seek thee: my soul thirsteth for thee, my flesh longeth for thee in a dry and thirsty land, where no water is;
But seek ye first the kingdom of God, and his righteousness; and all these things shall be added unto you.
But if from thence thou shalt seek the Lord thy God, thou shalt find him, if thou seek him with all thy heart and with all thy soul.
If ye then be risen with Christ, seek those things which are above, where Christ sitteth on the right hand of God.
2 Theo 3:5
And the Lord direct your hearts into the love of God, and into the patient waiting for Christ.
The Lord is good unto them that wait for him, to the soul that seeketh him.
Seek the Lord, and his strength: seek his face evermore.
When You said, “Seek My face,” my heart said to You, “Your face, Lord, I will seek.
Howbeit when he, the Spirit of truth, is come, he will guide you into all truth: for he shall not speak of himself; but whatsoever he shall hear, that shall he speak: and he will shew you things to come. He shall glorify me: for he shall receive of mine, and shall shew it unto you.
Call unto me, and I will answer thee, I will show you great and mighty things that you do not know of.
And ye shall seek me, and find me, when ye shall search for me with all your heart.
I will lift up mine eyes unto the hills, from whence cometh my help. 2 My help cometh from the Lord, which made heaven and earth. 3 He will not suffer thy foot to be moved: he that keepeth thee will not slumber. 4 Behold, he that keepeth Israel shall neither slumber nor sleep. 5 The Lord is thy keeper: the Lord is thy shade upon thy right hand. 6 The sun shall not smite thee by day, nor the moon by night. 7 The Lord shall preserve thee from all evil: he shall preserve thy soul. 8 The Lord shall preserve thy going out and thy coming in from this time forth, and even for evermore.
1 Chron 16:10
Glory ye in his holy name: let the heart of them rejoice that seek the Lord.
Due to the Corona Virus pandemic, many people are wondering what they should be doing during this time of quarantine, social distancing and self-isolation. For many people, it’s a time of heartache, turmoil, chaos, uneasiness and panic but for others it’s a time of rest, purpose, testing and prayer. Many are facing loss of loved ones as well as loss of homes, jobs and social life. The burdens are heavy to carry and fear is prevalent and real.
Not only due we face a global pandemic but lawlessness and violence in our nation, a cycle of natural disasters, economical instability and racial injustice.
The duality of this situation is that we are all dealing with the unknown reality and direction of our future all on levels; economically, socially, personally, and professionally.
During this time, we really need to be prepared for the unexpected, especially since we experienced a taste of the unexpected at the beginning of 2020. We must stay diligent and mindful of our circumstances and environment.
There is much confusion, deception, anger and fear. The enemy’s tactic is too keep your focus on distractions by messing with your emotions.
To gird up your loins means to fight or battle. To run.
This is a season for battle and a time to run with endurance. In this new season, we must use wisdom and discernment to navigate through the difficulties of life.
Therefore we also, since we are surrounded by so great a cloud of witnesses, let us lay aside every weight, and the sin which so easily ensnares us, and let us run with endurance the race that is set before us
Unfortunately, many people complained and resisted the lock down period during quarantine. Since they had no knowledge of the spirit, they did not understand that this was an opportunity to be still, rest and draw near to God as well as pray for direction and protection.
Due to their arrogance, pride and disobedience, they gathered at beaches, bars and restaurants despite the health warnings.
The wise in heart will receive commandments: but a prating fool shall fall.
In any spiritual fight or battle, you need clarity and divine instructions. You need to be focused and silence all distractions and noise around you. It may be difficult depending on your surroundings but when you develop a relationship with the Lord he provides an unspeakable peace that the world cannot understand.
He who keeps instruction is in the way of life, But he who refuses correction goes astray.
In order to win the battle, there are some things you should do to strengthen your spiritual, mental, emotional and physical being.
Abide in Confidence
It may seem odd to rest in a time of battle but you can’t fight a war if you are physically, mentally, emotionally and spiritually exhausted, weary and tired. You are not able to think clearly. You are more agitated. The enemy will attack ferociously when you are drained.
The definition to wait means to live in confidence or eager suspense. The Hebrew word “Qavoh” means to wait, look for, hope or expect.
You need physical rest to repair your body but you also need to build your mind and spirit for preparation to battle all the darts of the enemy. It is priority to read and speak the Word of God daily to strengthen your spirit. Faith comes by hearing and by hearing of the Word of God. Rom 10:17 You must not only recite the words but believe them. It’s more than lip service. The Word of God is life and it must be embedded within your heart. Speaking words of doubt or trying to convince yourself that God’s words are true will not work. You must believe by faith and receiving knowledge that God’s words are true.
2 Corth 10:5
Casting down imaginations, and every high thing that exalteth itself against the knowledge of God, and bringing into captivity every thought to the obedience of Christ;
The Word of God is a living word. It is life to your bones. The Lord spoke the world into existence and with the same power we can speak blessings or curses into our lives.
But without faith it is impossible to please Him, for he who comes to God must believe that He is, and that He is a rewarder of those who diligently seek Him.
If you are at a loss as to where to start, you should find scriptures that speak to your situation and attack the enemy with God’s word on a daily basis. To build up your faith, listen to sermons, have conversations with other believers of faith, listen to wise counsel and instruction, put on praise and worship music to elevate your mood.
When you simultaneously implement all of these activities into your daily routine, you will develop faith and strength to move through life despite the obstacles and challenges you face.
2 Theo 1: 11
Therefore we also pray always for you that our God would count you worthy of this calling, and fulfill all the good pleasure of His goodness and the work of faith with power
Be Led by the Holy Spirit
When you move or visit a new country or even start a new job, you have to observe and study and your new environment. You have to get familiar with the dialect or language, adapt to the food and culture. On a job, you will need to be in compliance with a new set of instructions, rules, policies and procedures to function successfully.
It’s wise to observe the ways of the people and your new environment. It’s a time of training. Be slow to speak. Learn how they function. You simply can’t jump into a new environment and think you know everything even if you are a seasoned professional or have years of experience.
You must walk in humility and not in the flesh. Allow the Holy Spirit to direct your steps. Be sensitive to the Holy Spirit and watch how he will prompt you in how to maneuver in a new atmosphere or climate. The Holy Spirit will teach you what you need to do or how to speak in season.
In any conflict, you will have the wisdom to size up your opponent by keeping a watchful eye and a cool head, as well as by learning their ways on how to handle the situation with wisdom and discernment. Learn the ways of the enemy. The devil is a liar and the master of all confusion.
Pray Without Ceasing
Communication with God is priority to fighting the battle at hand. There is no formal way to pray. Just open your mouth and tell the Lord what you’re going through. Ask questions. Praise His name. Listen to Him speak. Prayer require listening so do not just beg God in times of trouble for your needs or wants to be met. It’s a relationship so seek him in the good times and the bad times. Allow the Holy Spirit to lead you in prayer. He intercedes when we do not know what to say or do. He is the comforter when we are pain and despair.
Walk in Your Power and Authority
When you understand the power of God and trust in Him completely, you will have confidence in his ability to guard, protect, guide, teach and direct you. You have power to command and transform negative situations and outcomes with the power of God that lies within you.
It’s not by might, nor by power, but by my spirit, saith the Lord.
In the last days, the Body of Christ will experience the full power and anointing of the Spirit of God. However, it will only be for those who have a clean vessel and have purged themselves of all sin and disobedience from their lives. The spirit will not operate in an unholy, sinful person.
Therefore be imitators of God as dear children. 2 And walk in love, as Christ also has loved us and given Himself for us, an offering and a sacrifice to God for a sweet-smelling aroma. But fornication and all uncleanness or covetousness, let it not even be named among you, as is fitting for saints; 4 neither filthiness, nor foolish talking, nor coarse jesting, which are not fitting, but rather giving of thanks. 5 For [a]this you know, that no fornicator, unclean person, nor covetous man, who is an idolater, has any inheritance in the kingdom of Christ and God. 6 Let no one deceive you with empty words, for because of these things the wrath of God comes upon the sons of disobedience. 7 Therefore do not be partakers with them.
1 Theo 4:7-8
For God did not call us to uncleanness, but in holiness. 8 Therefore he who rejects this does not reject man, but God, who has also given us His Holy Spirit.
Prepare for Battle
Everyone has a different assignment so you can’t follow what you’re neighbor, friend or family is doing. The Lord has called you for a specific task. You have unique, talents, skills, experience and gifts. This society has conditioned people to follow and copy the patterns, strategies and tactics of the world but we are kingdom citizens.
We walk in what the Lord has designed and instructed for us to do. We must be aligned and in tune with the Spirit of God. Be obedient. Listen to His instructions. We have a sphere of influence in specific areas and we must occupy the land that was given to us to glorify and praise his name.
And we know that all things work together for good to those who love God, to those who are the called according to His purpose.
Put on your war clothes. Suit up warriors! You have been trained in your wilderness season. Rise up, remnant and take your position. Boot camp season is over. Take your authority and Power in Christ and slay the opposition set before you.
I can do all things in Christ which strengthens me.
Although we are spiritual beings, we live in a natural world. We must be salt and light on the earth. The Lord has a calling and purpose for each person he created. You were designed to give God glory.
Jesus came to save the lost. We are his hands and feet so we must navigate through life demonstrating his love in obedience. We must have courage and strength to dismantle the violent, destructive forces and attacks of the enemy. We must be watchful of the times and seasons, laws and policies being implemented that are not in alignment to God’s laws. We cannot sit back as fearful, lazy Christians and watch the enemy kill, steal and destroy. We must gird up our loins for battle.
Be strong and of a good courage, fear not, nor be afraid of them: for the Lord thy God, he it is that doth go with thee; he will not fail thee, nor forsake thee.
Walk in the Light
8 For you were once darkness, but now you are light in the Lord. Walk as children of light 9 (for the fruit of the Spirit is in all goodness, righteousness, and truth), 10 finding out what is acceptable to the Lord. 11 And have no fellowship with the unfruitful works of darkness, but rather expose them. 12 For it is shameful even to speak of those things which are done by them in secret. 13 But all things that are exposed are made manifest by the light, for whatever makes manifest is light. 14 Therefore He says: “Awake, you who sleep, Arise from the dead, And Christ will give you light.” 15 See then that ye walk circumspectly, not as fools, but as wise, 16 Redeeming the time, because the days are evil. 17 Wherefore be ye not unwise, but understanding what the will of the Lord is. 18 And be not drunk with wine, wherein is excess; but be filled with the Spirit; 19 Speaking to yourselves in psalms and hymns and spiritual songs, singing and making melody in your heart to the Lord; 20 Giving thanks always for all things unto God and the Father in the name of our Lord Jesus Christ; 21 Submitting yourselves one to another in the fear of God.
Execute with Precision
There is a plan or strategy to execute with precision. You must target the root to destroy it. You cannot allow distractions to get in the way.
See, I have this day set thee over the nations and over the kingdoms, to root out, and to pull down, and to destroy, and to throw down, to build, and to plant.
Sometimes you will have to stand alone. You have to guard your heart, mind, mouth and ears from evil and deception. You can’t absorb the nature of evil. Be mindful of what you listen to or watch on TV, radio or the internet. The most subtle appearances of evil can corrupt your heart. It will suck your energy and strength. It will cloud you vision. You need razor-sharp focus to diffuse the enemy.
The adversary is the master of all lies. He is a deceiver. He is a thief. He is a manipulator. Don’t allow the devil to whisper words of discouragement or strip you of your authority and power in Christ. Don’t allow the voice of Satan to become louder than the voice of God. The devil is not creative. God is the creator and holds all creation in his hands. Take your position in Christ and decree God’s promises over your life and over your family and friends.
When a boxer enters the ring, he fights by targeting the weakest points of his opponent. He wears him down to the point of exhaustion to win the match. That is the enemy’s tactic and strategy for the saints. The enemy will constantly use the same opposition to come against you.
Walk in your identity in Christ Jesus. Break the lies of fear, doubt, intimidation, opposition, sickness and disease, and resistance. The Lord is our advocate, our mediator, our great high priest and our intercessor. Put on the whole armour of the Lord.
But a man of understanding has wisdom. 24 The fear of the wicked will come upon him,And the desire of the righteous will be granted.25 When the whirlwind passes by, the wicked is no more,But the righteous has an everlasting foundation.
2 Corth 10:3-6
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 exalteth itself against the knowledge of God, and bringing into captivity every thought to the obedience of Christ. And having in a readiness to revenge all disobedience, when your obedience is fulfilled.
You can’t defeat the enemy in your own strength. Who is this King of glory? The Lord is strong and mighty, the Lord mighty in battle. Psalm 24:8
That we henceforth be no more children, tossed to and fro, and carried about with every wind of doctrine, by the sleight of men, and cunning craftiness, whereby they lie in wait to deceive; Eph 4:14
We must elevate our mindsets and not be swayed by the ways of the world with every wind of doctrine. We must run with endurance the race that is set before us.
I say run, run, run, child of God like you have never run before!
I press toward the goal for the prize of the upward call of God in Christ Jesus.
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2 Sam 22:40
For You have armed me with strength for the battle; You have subdued under me those who rose against me.
Behold, the Lord’s hand is not shortened, That it cannot save; Nor His ear heavy, That it cannot hear.
And let us not grow weary while doing good, for in due season we shall reap if we do not lose heart.
But let patience have its perfect work, that you may be perfect and complete, lacking nothing.
Be anxious for nothing, but in everything by prayer and supplication, with thanksgiving, let your requests be made known to God;
To console those who mourn in Zion, To give them beauty for ashes, The oil of joy for mourning, The garment of praise for the spirit of heaviness; That they may be called trees of righteousness, The planting of the Lord, that He may be glorified.”
Stand therefore, having girded your waist with truth, having put on the breastplate of righteousness
Suffering for Right and Wrong
I Pet 3:13-22
13 And who is he who will harm you if you become followers of what is good? 14 But even if you should suffer for righteousness’ sake, you are blessed. “And do not be afraid of their threats, nor be troubled.” 15 But sanctify the Lord God in your hearts, and always be ready to give a defense to everyone who asks you a reason for the hope that is in you, with meekness and fear; 16 having a good conscience, that when they defame you as evildoers, those who revile your good conduct in Christ may be ashamed. 17 For it is better, if it is the will of God, to suffer for doing good than for doing evil.
For the vision is yet for an appointed time; But at the end it will speak, and it will not lie. Though it tarries, wait for it; Because it will surely come, It will not tarry.
For I know the plans I have for you, plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you a hope and a future.
I press toward the goal for the prize of the upward call of God in Christ Jesus.
I King 18:46
46 Then the hand of the Lord came upon Elijah; and he girded[a] up his loins and ran ahead of Ahab to the entrance of Jezreel.
But those who wait on the Lord Shall renew their strength; They shall mount up with wings like eagles, They shall run and not be weary, They shall walk and not faint.
Now [a]prepare yourself like a man; I will question you, and you shall answer Me.
Walking in the Spirit
16 I say then: Walk in the Spirit, and you shall not fulfill the lust of the flesh. 17 For the flesh lusts against the Spirit, and the Spirit against the flesh; and these are contrary to one another, so that you do not do the things that you wish. 18 But if you are led by the Spirit, you are not under the law. 19 Now the works of the flesh are evident, which are: adultery, fornication, uncleanness, lewdness, 20 idolatry, sorcery, hatred, contentions, jealousies, outbursts of wrath, selfish ambitions, dissensions, heresies, 21 envy, [f]murders, drunkenness, revelries, and the like; of which I tell you beforehand, just as I also told you in time past, that those who practice such things will not inherit the kingdom of God. 22 But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, longsuffering, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, 23 [g]gentleness, self-control. Against such there is no law. 24 And those who are Christ’s have crucified the flesh with its passions and desires. 25 If we live in the Spirit, let us also walk in the Spirit. 26 Let us not become conceited, provoking one another, envying one another.
But you, O mountains of Israel, you shall shoot forth your branches and yield your fruit to My people Israel, for they are about to come. 9 For indeed I am for you, and I will turn to you, and you shall be tilled and sown. 10 I will multiply men upon you, all the house of Israel, all of it; and the cities shall be inhabited and the ruins rebuilt. 11 I will multiply upon you man and beast; and they shall increase and [a]bear young; I will make you inhabited as in former times, and do better for you than at your beginnings. Then you shall know that I am the Lord. 12 Yes, I will cause men to walk on you, My people Israel; they shall take possession of you, and you shall be their inheritance; no more shall you bereave them of children.”
We are truly living in perilous and challenging times. As we stand in the fire of adversity, trials, persecution, and affliction, the Lord stands in the midst of us in the heat of turbulence.
Zech 13:7-9 7 Awake, O sword, against my shepherd, and against the man that is my fellow, saith the Lord of hosts: smite the shepherd, and the sheep shall be scattered: and I will turn mine hand upon the little ones.8 And it shall come to pass, that in all the land, saith the Lord, two parts therein shall be cut off and die; but the third shall be left therein.9 And I will bring the third part through the fire, and will refine them as silver is refined, and will try them as gold is tried: they shall call on my name, and I will hear them: I will say, It is my people: and they shall say, The Lord is my God.
In the last days, we must continue to build our character to be able to withstand the persecution and adversity coming upon the Body of Christ.
Do not let the current climate environment, condition or circumstances intimidate or scare you. Remember who you are in Christ. Remember what He has brought you through during your wilderness season.
You serve a mighty God who is the creator of Heaven and earth. The Lord will never leave you or forsake you.
Regardless of gossip, slander, jealousy, envy, hatred, anger, shame, embarrassment or ridicule, the Lord has proven himself faithful in the wilderness. Through the wilderness, you learned how to fight the enemy. You were raised up in a boot camp for such a time as this.
Do not allow your focus to become blurred by the confusion of the time. You have an arsenal of admonition which is the Word of God. You can take down every attack of the enemy with the power of prayer, entering the courts with thanksgiving with praise and worship, studying the Bible and by the word of your testimony.
Never underestimate the God you serve. In the midst of the fire, the Father is training you for battle and shielding you from being scorched. You will be able to withstand the heat and pressure of spiritual warfare.
Isaiah 43:2 When thou passest through the waters, I will be with thee; and through the rivers, they shall not overflow thee: when thou walkest through the fire, thou shalt not be burned; neither shall the flame kindle upon thee.
I am reminded of the days when smoking was allowed in public spaces. I would always hate when I came home and smelled like cigarette smoke. The cigarette smoke lingered on my clothes until they were washed.
As a child of God, we stand in the midst of the fire and we are not coming out smelling like smoke. We will not look like what we have been through. The Lord is our sustained hope and protector. He will shield us from the fiery darts of the enemy.
In the Fiery Furnace
If it be so, our God whom we serve is able to deliver us from the burning fiery furnace, and he will deliver us out of thine hand, O king. 18 But if not, be it known unto thee, O king, that we will not serve thy gods, nor worship the golden image which thou hast set up. 19 Then was Nebuchadnezzar full of fury, and the form of his visage was changed against Shadrach, Meshach, and Abednego: therefore he spake, and commanded that they should heat the furnace one seven times more than it was wont to be heated. 20 And he commanded the most mighty men that were in his army to bind Shadrach, Meshach, and Abednego, and to cast them into the burning fiery furnace. 21 Then these men were bound in their coats, their hosen, and their hats, and their other garments, and were cast into the midst of the burning fiery furnace. 22 Therefore because the king’s commandment was urgent, and the furnace exceeding hot, the flames of the fire slew those men that took up Shadrach, Meshach, and Abednego. 23 And these three men, Shadrach, Meshach, and Abednego, fell down bound into the midst of the burning fiery furnace. 24 Then Nebuchadnezzar the king was astonished, and rose up in haste, and spake, and said unto his counsellors, Did not we cast three men bound into the midst of the fire? They answered and said unto the king, True, O king. 25 He answered and said, Lo, I see four men loose, walking in the midst of the fire, and they have no hurt; and the form of the fourth is like the Son of God. 26 Then Nebuchadnezzar came near to the mouth of the burning fiery furnace, and spake, and said, Shadrach, Meshach, and Abednego, ye servants of the most high God, come forth, and come hither. Then Shadrach, Meshach, and Abednego, came forth of the midst of the fire.27 And the princes, governors, and captains, and the king’s counsellors, being gathered together, saw these men, upon whose bodies the fire had no power, nor was an hair of their head singed, neither were their coats changed, nor the smell of fire had passed on them. 28 Then Nebuchadnezzar spake, and said, Blessed be the God of Shadrach, Meshach, and Abednego, who hath sent his angel, and delivered his servants that trusted in him, and have changed the king’s word, and yielded their bodies, that they might not serve nor worship any god, except their own God. 29 Therefore I make a decree, That every people, nation, and language, which speak any thing amiss against the God of Shadrach, Meshach, and Abednego, shall be cut in pieces, and their houses shall be made a dunghill: because there is no other God that can deliver after this sort.30 Then the king promoted Shadrach, Meshach, and Abednego, in the province of Babylon.
Confidence in Your Christ-Centered Identity
When you understand your identity in Christ, you realize your supernatural power and authority is a reflection of Jesus Christ. He provides you with the confidence to face opposition and persecution.
You have stability to dwell in uncomfortable environments or deal with difficult people Jesus provides the wisdom to maneuver the plans, schemes and plots of the enemy. His shield of protection covers every dart – whether words or actions from the enemy. You are not concerned about what people think or say but what the Lord has spoken, shown you and delivered you from. Allow the Holy Spirit to work through you.
The Character of Christ
Jesus was not timid, weak or quiet. He was a man who challenged the Pharisees with only one question that had them puzzled and confused.
And it came to pass, that on one of those days, as he taught the people in the temple, and preached the gospel, the chief priests and the scribes came upon him with the elders, 2 And spake unto him, saying, Tell us, by what authority doest thou these things? or who is he that gave thee this authority? 3 And he answered and said unto them, I will also ask you one thing; and answer me: 4 The baptism of John, was it from heaven, or of men? 5 And they reasoned with themselves, saying, If we shall say, From heaven; he will say, Why then believed ye him not? 6 But and if we say, Of men; all the people will stone us: for they be persuaded that John was a prophet. 7 And they answered, that they could not tell whence it was. 8 And Jesus said unto them, Neither tell I you by what authority I do these things.
He overthrew the tables and destroyed the temple when he found out they turned the church into a den of thieves instead of a house of prayer. Matt 21:12
Jesus was oppressed, and he was afflicted, yet he opened not his mouth: he is brought as a lamb to the slaughter, and as a sheep before her shearers is dumb, so he openeth not his mouth. Isaiah 53:7
There are three words that come to mind when going through adversity.
The Patience in Longevity
When you are going through any trial in life, you need to embrace the patience in longevity. It’s a season of uncomfortable testing of your character that shapes and molds you while you face difficult situations and circumstances.
It is in time to draw close to the Lord in solitude. It’s a time to draw close in communications prayer with the Lord. It’s not the time to manipulate the problem that is blocking your way but to stand in the midst of the fire where the Lord performs His perfect work in you despite how you may feel.
His timing is not our own so you cannot rush the process of growth. You must learn to grasp the power of longevity ad focus on building your faith in God. Whether it be three months, six months or ten or twenty years, you have to keep your eyes focused on the Lord and learn as much as possible about Jesus during the season of testing and throughout your entire life.
The Pressure of Persistence
When you’re in the fire, you must apply the pressure of persistence. There will be resistance but when you constantly complain or murmur it only prolongs the trial.
When you apply the pressure of persistence, you strengthen the core of your inner man. You push forward regardless of your emotions. You may feel like giving up at times but if will fuel yourself with hope, you will find the strength to move forward. Without hope you fall short into despair and discouragement.
When you reflect on how the Lord delivered you from past situations, it provides you with the hope and faith to keep moving forward and you are less likely to focus on your current situation because you have a Godly assurance that God is working everything out for your highest good.
You may not understand why you may be going through it at the time, but in due season it will be revealed and it will all make sense.
The Grit of Endurance
Withstanding the fire of affliction for a long season produces the enormity of endurance. As a child of God, this is a training ground for the persecution coming upon the saints of the Body of Christ. As the temperature rises, you will need to have strength to endure the mocking, ridicule, hatred, judgement and slander. Are you afraid to stand alone? Do you appease men or appease God?
And the king appointed them a daily provision of the king’s meat, and of the wine which he drank: so nourishing them three years, that at the end thereof they might stand before the king. Dan 1:5
8 But Daniel purposed in his heart that he would not defile himself with the portion of the king’s meat, nor with the wine which he drank: therefore he requested of the prince of the eunuchs that he might not defile himself. Dan 1:8
15 And at the end of ten days their countenances appeared fairer and fatter in flesh than all the children which did eat the portion of the king’s meat. Dan 1:15
During any trial, the enemy uses schemes, plots and devices to cause confusion and division. He is a lover of death and destruction. He is very crafty and uses trickery but he is not creative. He will use the same attacks repeatedly to wear out the saints.
The Father is the only creator. The Lord is creative with all-knowing omniscient power. The Lord stands with you in the fiery trial of testing. The strength lies within resting in the Lord. It’s allowing the Lord to work through you and to continue filling your spirit with the Word of God. Praise is a weapon that surrounds your atmosphere with the Power of God. It cleanses the demonic forces of depression, sadness, despair, confusion and fear.
When you wait on the Lord, He is working behind the scenes so continue with prayer which is the ultimate relationship needed to endure the testing of your faith.
Whatever we may face in the coming days or months – disease and pestilence, war and human injustice, spiritual warfare, economic collapse, famine and persecution, we must not lose heart in our trials. We will be strengthened in the Lord if we do not grow weary in the faith.
The breath of the Lord will be the wind that carries the Body of Christ to perform His purposes and plans in the earth until he returns.
Endure. Endure. Endure…until the end.
Prayer for Strength and Power
Father, thank you Lord for being the head of my life. For standing with me in the fiery furnace of life and protecting and shielding me from the evil one who strives against my soul. Lord, be my defender and provide the strength, hope, and faith to endure the attacks of the enemy. You said in your word that you give me the power to tread on serpents and scorpions, and over all the power of the enemy and nothing will by any means harm me. You hold all power in your hands. I receive the same power through the Lord Jesus Christ to crush the head of the enemy under my feet with all authority and power. I give you all praises and glory to the King of Kings and the Lords of Lords. I seal this prayer in the precious Blood of Jesus.
Whoever dwells in the shelter of the Most High will rest in the shadow of the Almighty. 2 I will say of the Lord, “He is my refuge and my fortress, my God, in whom I trust.”
20 Now unto him that is able to do exceeding abundantly above all that we ask or think, according to the power that worketh in us,
I Corth 2:5
5 That your faith should not stand in the wisdom of men, but in the power of God.
8 Finally, brothers and sisters, 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.
13 I can do all things through Christ which strengtheneth me.
29 But as then he that was born after the flesh persecuted him that was born after the Spirit, even so it is now.
I Thess 2:4
But as we were allowed of God to be put in trust with the gospel, even so we speak; not as pleasing men, but God, which trieth our hearts.
I Thess 5:14
14 Now we exhort you, brethren, warn them that are unruly, comfort the feebleminded, support the weak, be patient toward all men.
I Thess 1:4-5
4 Knowing, brethren beloved, your election of God.
5 For our gospel came not unto you in word only, but also in power, and in the Holy Ghost, and in much assurance; as ye know what manner of men we were among you for your sake.
2 Corth 4:6-17
6 For God, who commanded the light to shine out of darkness, hath shined in our hearts, to give the light of the knowledge of the glory of God in the face of Jesus Christ.
7 But we have this treasure in earthen vessels, that the excellency of the power may be of God, and not of us.
8 We are troubled on every side, yet not distressed; we are perplexed, but not in despair;
9 Persecuted, but not forsaken; cast down, but not destroyed;
10 Always bearing about in the body the dying of the Lord Jesus, that the life also of Jesus might be made manifest in our body.
11 For we which live are always delivered unto death for Jesus’ sake, that the life also of Jesus might be made manifest in our mortal flesh.
12 So then death worketh in us, but life in you.
13 We having the same spirit of faith, according as it is written, I believed, and therefore have I spoken; we also believe, and therefore speak;
14 Knowing that he which raised up the Lord Jesus shall raise up us also by Jesus, and shall present us with you.
15 For all things are for your sakes, that the abundant grace might through the thanksgiving of many redound to the glory of God.
16 For which cause we faint not; but though our outward man perish, yet the inward man is renewed day by day.
17 For our light affliction, which is but for a moment, worketh for us a far more exceeding and eternal weight of glory;
17 Ye shall diligently keep the commandments of the Lord your God, and his testimonies, and his statutes, which he hath commanded thee.
18 And thou shalt do that which is right and good in the sight of the Lord: that it may be well with thee, and that thou mayest go in and possess the good land which the Lord sware unto thy fathers.
7 Remember, and forget not, how thou provokedst the Lord thy God to wrath in the wilderness: from the day that thou didst depart out of the land of Egypt, until ye came unto this place, ye have been rebellious against the Lord.
12 Then beware lest thou forget the Lord, which brought thee forth out of the land of Egypt, from the house of bondage.
13 Thou shalt fear the Lord thy God, and serve him, and shalt swear by his name.
14 Ye shall not go after other gods, of the gods of the people which are round about you;
15 (For the Lord thy God is a jealous God among you) lest the anger of the Lord thy God be kindled against thee, and destroy thee from off the face of the earth.
18 And thou shalt do that which is right and good in the sight of the Lord: that it may be well with thee, and that thou mayest go in and possess the good land which the Lord sware unto thy fathers.
21 Then thou shalt say unto thy son, We were Pharaoh’s bondmen in Egypt; and the Lord brought us out of Egypt with a mighty hand:
30 The Lord your God which goeth before you, he shall fight for you, according to all that he did for you in Egypt before your eyes;
20 And the God of peace shall bruise Satan under your feet shortly. The grace of our Lord Jesus Christ be with you. Amen.
3 The Lord is a man of war: the Lord is his name.
4 Pharaoh’s chariots and his host hath he cast into the sea: his chosen captains also are drowned in the Red sea.
3 The Lord is a man of war: the Lord is his name.
4 Pharaoh’s chariots and his host hath he cast into the sea: his chosen captains also are drowned in the Red sea.
14 The Lord shall fight for you, and ye shall hold your peace.
Book of Philemon v. 21
21 Having confidence in thy obedience I wrote unto thee, knowing that thou wilt also do more than I say.
21 Far above all principality, and power, and might, and dominion, and every name that is named, not only in this world, but also in that which is to come:
22 And hath put all things under his feet, and gave him to be the head over all things to the church,
23 Which is his body, the fulness of him that filleth all in all.
11 So shall my word be that goeth forth out of my mouth: it shall not return unto me void, but it shall accomplish that which I please, and it shall prosper in the thing whereto I sent it.
Stand fast therefore in the liberty wherewith Christ hath made us free, and be not entangled again with the yoke of bondage. Gal 5:1
It was never God’s intention for His people to live in bondage. However, we live in a fallen and sinful world. Without the cross through the sacrifice of Jesus, we would not have the opportunity to receive eternal life through salvation.
Through that one selfless act that Jesus did, we are set
Whatever has you wrapped up in bondage, there is a way
out through deliverance.
The Lord wants you free from addiction, free from poverty, healed from sickness, released from your mental, emotional or psychological prisons and released from guilt, shame, and condemnation.
You don’t live there anymore. There is a place called grace and mercy. It’s full of compassion and love. You can’t get lost on the way there because Jesus will meet you exactly where you are.
You may have traveled a long, hard road with many detours along the way but God is faithful and just. He waits patiently at the door waiting to embrace you, teach you and bless you with His abundant promises for your life.
The Lord’s ways are sure. His path is straight. Nothing
is too hard for Him to handle.
There will be tests of your faith, lessons to be learned and transitions in life that are unexpected. The ultimate plan is in God’s hands. Are you willing to surrender? Are you ready to pick up your cross and follow him?
Just take one step of faith. He is waiting at the door for your arrival.
At one time or another, all of us have experienced some form of betrayal. Betrayal comes in so many forms: Gossip, cheating, lying, and treason to name a few. Whether it was a spouse, friend, co-worker, or family member, the pain can run so deep that it may seem you will never heal again.
The ultimate betrayal was found in the life of Jesus Christ. There are several accounts of betrayal he experienced from the people closest to him; to the absolute stranger who despised him. He was persecuted, betrayed, mocked, and murdered all for the sake of His ultimate purpose and sacrifice to die for our sins and to save the lost.
What should our reaction be when faced with betrayal? We should look to Jesus as the model of forgiveness. One example was in Luke 22:34. “And he said, I tell you, Peter, the cock shall not crow this day, before that thou shalt thrice deny thou that knows me.
You may have experienced this situation at one time or another. You spot someone in a room or familiar place that you know. You could be at the grocery store, shopping mall, or social event and someone you know sees you across the room but instead of a smile or wave, they just turn their head like they don’t even know you.
This is just a minor example of how you may feel when someone doesn’t acknowledge your presence for whatever reason. Either way, it doesn’t feel good. Can you imagine how Jesus felt? The one closest to him denied him three times! There is nothing worse than a two-faced person. You may also question your relationship with that person even if they are only a co-worker, neighbor, or acquaintance. It’s a breach of faith in hopes of building a friendship or business relationship.
Another prime example was in Luke 22:48.“But, Jesus said unto him, Judas, betrays thou the Son of Man with a kiss?”Flattery is often buried under deceit. Sometimes the sweetest person is disguised as a wolf in sheep’s clothing. You shouldn’t be suspicious of every kind and loving gesture but action speaks louder than words. As the saying goes, “Keep your friends close but your enemies closer.”
The ultimate betrayal was in Mark 10:33-34. “Behold, we go to Jerusalem and the Son of Man shall be delivered unto the chief priests and unto the scribes; and they should condemn him to death and shall deliver him to the Gentiles: And they shall mock him, and shall scourge him and shall spit upon him, and shall kill him and the third day he shall rise again.
Jesus paid the ultimate sacrifice for our sins out of his love and forgiveness. “For God so loved the world that He gave His only begotten Son, that whoever believes in Him should not perish but have everlasting life.For God did not send His Son into the world to condemn the world, but that the world through Him might be saved. He who believes in Him is not condemned, but he who does not believe is condemned already because he has not believed in the name of the only begotten Son of God. And this is the condemnation, that the light has come into the world, and men loved darkness rather than light because their deeds were evil. For everyone practicing evil hates the light and does not come to the light, lest his deeds should be exposed. But he who does the truth comes to the light, that his deeds may be clearly seen, that they have been done in God.” John 3: 16-21
There is only one account in the Bible that I’m aware of that God does not forgive. In Mark 3:29 it states, “But he who blasphemes or mocks against the Holy Spirit never has forgiveness, but is subject to eternal condemnation.”
Forgiveness is not easy. Sometimes the hardest thing to do is to forgive yourself. It is also a life-long process. The act of forgiveness releases us from the negative emotions that hold us in bondage to the person who hurt us. However, if you happen to be on the other side of forgiveness, a sincere apology is the least you can give to the person you hurt. Empathy, patience, and understanding will have to be worked through in each issue of any relationship.
Forgiveness is not something that can be taught. It is the most difficult thing to overcome in the flesh. Memories play over and over in your mind which makes it hard to let go. However, the quicker you can let go of the pain, the faster you can move on. You may never forget, but you can forgive.
The best thing you can do is to acknowledge your pain, accept what you’ve experienced, and walk in patience because it takes time depending on the level of deception attached to the pain. It’s much like the grieving process of a lost loved one.
Forgiveness also doesn’t mean you have to subject yourself to the same trifling people, situations, or circumstances. It means you can release the animosity, anger, pain, or guilt and open your heart to receive peace, grace, healing, and freedom from every emotion that’s imprisoned you.
The act of forgiveness is the ministry of Jesus. It is the foundation, and cornerstone of the Gospel. It is also found in your heart despite the difficulties, challenges, and disappointments you face in life. You are set free. Don’t let another hour, day, week, month, or year go by. Make the decision to forgive today.
“And whenever you stand to pray, if you have anything against anyone, forgive him, that your Father in heaven may also forgive you your trespasses.Mark 11:25
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The world does not need to make new resolutions. We need real solutions. Now, I’m not saying to scratch your goals. Of course, we should all have aspirations in our daily lives, but how do we reach our objectives without a concrete plan? Instead of goal setting, we should possibly be focused on intricate planning, drafting, and charting our course of direction.
Within any plan, there is a process of preparation. Preparation is best achieved through small, attainable steps that are realistic to ensure finishing or completing a task or project.
We become so overwhelmed with our schedules and plans that by the end of the year, we are exhausted, frustrated, or disappointed because we didn’t accomplish what we set out to do. Sometimes it doesn’t even take until the end of the year, our goals begin to fizzle in the first quarter of the year.
In order to prepare, you should consider:
De-cluttering your landscape: Clearing out your spiritual, physical, mental, and emotional space. It includes eliminating toxic substances, relationships, negative thinking, and speaking which are strongholds that keep you in bondage.
Getting things in order: Taking time to organize, restructure, rearrange, or rework whatever plan you have in mind. Remember, don’t look at the overall picture, but keeping your eyes on Jesus while we continue to take small, mindful steps forward.
Researching, studying, and learning new concepts: Whatever you desire to achieve, learn as much as you can so you are well prepared to handle unexpected challenges that come your way. You should also allow extra time for unforeseen obstacles and difficulties. We all make mistakes, so don’t beat yourself up, but make sure you learn from each experience which is a building block to success. You’re allowed to start over. Each day is a new beginning. You must have consistency and continue to strive for excellence. Nothing can be accomplished without focus, endurance, and resilience. “Study yourself to be approved unto God, a workman that needeth not to be ashamed, rightly dividing the word of truth.”2 Tim 2:15
Praying for direction and guidance: You should incorporate a lifestyle of prayer, meditation, and fasting. Make sure you include the Lord in every area of your plans. Let this be top priority. “Seek ye first the Kingdom of God and all these things will be added unto you.”Matt 6:33 The Lord directs and orders your steps. “The word is a lamp to my feet and a light to my path.” Psalm 119:105
Seeking wisdom from wise counsel and building a support system: Choose a friend, partner or family member who is positive and shares the same interests or goals that you desire to attain.
Shifting perspectives: Analyze the full picture, keep an open mind and generate new ideas.
It’s much harder to achieve goals on your own merit. Scripture states, “When a man falls, the other man picks him up.” and “If one prevail against him, two shall withstand him; and a threefold cord is not quickly broken.” Ecclesiastes 4:12
Having a community of like-minded people, helps you focus and work towards a plan, goal or solution. When you face opposition, just remember that God is the Creator and ultimate master builder. He holds the blueprints and the master plan of your life.
When things don’t go exactly as planned, seek Him for clarity, peace, wisdom and strength. “He will supply all your needs according to His riches in glory.”Philippians 4:19
The Lord promises that you will finish well and finish strong. In the end, you will be able to proclaim, “I have fought a good fight, I have finished my course, I have kept the faith.”2 Timothy 4:7
11 For I know the thoughts that I think toward you, saith the Lord, thoughts of peace, and not of evil, to give you an expected end. “Jer 29:11
And in the days of these kings, shall the God of heaven set up a kingdom, which shall never be destroyed: and the kingdom shall not be left to other people, but it shall break in pieces and consume all these kingdoms, and it shall stand forever. Dan 2:44
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It seems everyone has dealt with rejection at one time or another in their lives. Rejection comes in many forms. It may be when you tried to make a friend in elementary school, but was teased and laughed at instead. In high school, you may have wanted to go to the prom with a boy or girl that you had a crush on, only to find out that they already had a date or had no interest in you. Even in adulthood, there are all kinds of rejection stemming from interviewing for a job to being declined for a loan for that beautiful home you dreamed of.
No matter how rejection finds you, the emotions that follow are real. The one person who suffered rejection was Jesus Christ. Throughout his ministry, he was taunted, scorned, and rejected. He could not even provide miracles in his hometown of Nazareth because they would not accept him or his teaching. He was kicked out of the synagogue while speaking, yet he did not walk with a scornful heart.
Rejection is a hard pill to swallow and can lead to other issues if you’re constantly rejected by others. It can stripe you from your self-esteem and confidence leaving you to feel like you’re not good enough or it can be the root of jealousy when you start to compare yourself to others. When you have suffered betrayal, insecurity, frustration, and fear, it tends to overwhelm your emotional state.
Rejection does not feel good, but when you know and understand that there is a process in pain and that the Lord is establishing and guiding your footsteps, as well as shaping your character, it shines a new perspective on such negative feelings.
Here is just a few benefits of rejection:
Develops thicker skin and makes you stronger
Provides safety and protection from unseen danger or harm
Teaches you how to accept rejection and move on
Pushes you to greatness by developing yourself on a personal, spiritual, emotional, mental and physical level
Motivates and pushes you to try harder
When you feel rejected, understand that there is a loving God who created you and loves you unconditionally. It’s often hard to grasp his love at times because we live in a physical world, but we are made up of spiritual DNA and also battle with things we cannot visually grasp. Our battle is not with flesh and blood but with spiritual things in high places. (Eph 6:10-17)
Don’t allow rejection to destroy who you are. Speak words of encouragement to yourself and to others. Build a support group of positive, nurturing friends who will inspire and motivate you. However, make sure can motivate and encourage yourself. Work on yourself every day.
Learn a new hobby or participate in your community. To attend a conference or seminar to learn something new. Keep growing. Don’t take rejection personally. Stand tall in your abilities, talents, and gifts. Just keep it moving. When you know who you are in Christ, you will not be swayed by the opinions of others and the pressures of the world.
Lord, we receive your unconditional love. Heal our hearts from the pain of rejection. Let us not look to the world for our worth, but to you who created us in your image. You hold all the power in your hands. Thank you for your love and the freedom to be me.