POWER TO CHANGE
By Allen Thomas
How’s life? Are you at the top of the mountain? Are you low in the valley? Or are you riding steady on the plain? When we’re on top of the mountain we may feel we’re ready for any trial, until one comes that throws us into a tailspin down to the valley. When we’re on the plain we may be satisfied with few bumps, but may be in danger of becoming complacent and happy for just getting through. Welcome to the human experience with a real super-human villain fighting against you. He may even be working to keep you on the flat plains if that keeps you happy to stay out of the spiritual fight.
Do you want hope? Center in on something you once knew. Remember when you came to your first love for both the Lord and the Word? You took to the Word like a duck takes to water or a thirsty flower to rain; you soaked it in and used it to transform who you used to be into a thriving, maturing Christian.
We need to get back to our previous confidence in and understanding of the ability of the Word of God to change who we are and our circumstances! It was that same Word of God, after all, that He used to frame the worlds (Heb 11:3)! It’s the same Word that brought us through some of the most dramatic, positive change in our lives!
What’s your area of need? Find a scripture, a truth of God that speaks to your situation and live on it. What scripture has God given you in the past? Meditate on it and live out of it! What is your favorite scripture? Repeat it, think on it, breathe it in and speak it out! Watch the power of the dynamo filled, life-changing Word of God make change happen!
SERIES: WORKING IT OUT By Pastor Philippi
Part 5: RESISTANCE TRAINING 4-19-2015
Resistance Toward the Devil
Sometimes we put too much emphasis on fighting devils and going on the offense. Don’t go looking for devils, the devil will find you. Just love Jesus. In Jude 9 even Michael, the archangel, didn’t come against the devil in his own strength, he said, “The Lord rebuke you!” You can rebuke things, but be careful about taking too much on when it is ultimately the Lord who gives the victory!
Philippians 2:12 tells us to work out, “work out your own salvation.” Resistance training is pitting your muscles against an external resistance, and that builds muscle. Everything the devil does is resisting us. He is pushing against us through trials and temptations.
If you get this it will change your life! You will stop being grumpy. Ephesians 6:11-17 talks about the armor of God helping us stand against the devil. People aren’t your enemy. He is calling us to stand in the armor of the Lord. Every morning put on your spiritual armor. These are all defensive weapons except for the sword of the Spirit, which is the Word of God. You can speak the Word over your problems.
Jesus was tested with all three categories of sin, lust of the eyes, the lust of the flesh and the pride of life, and each time He said, “It is written.” He used the sword of the Spirit. Some of us use it against one another. The word is not to impress others or get one over on another. The word of God is quick and powerful against all the powers of hell. “It is written.” Practice that!
The Armor of God Allows You to Take a Hit and Keep Standing and be Strengthened by It
The armor allows arrows to bounce off. You can take a licking and keep on ticking, better than a Timex watch. Exercise geeks say resistance is when a muscle is repeatedly forced to contract against resistance, it then responds by getting stronger.
We need to think differently about trials and being spoken against. We get attacked, have a problem, a hardship, or are hurt and we think we will get set back. We don’t understand that everything the devil hits us with is strength training. When the big guy comes against, stand. You can complain about how hard it is or you can come to the realization that the more he pushes, the more your muscles are growing stronger, so later you can hold your weight against somebody bigger than him.
1 Peter 5:8-9 Be sober, be vigilant; because your adversary the devil walks about like a roaring lion, seeking whom he may devour. 9 Resist him, steadfast in the faith, knowing that the same sufferings are experienced by your brotherhood in the world. (NKJV)
The devil is looking for somebody he can devour. That’s why you sheep need to stay together. ‘I just like to worship God in the woods.’ So do the wolves. Resist him, that means withstand him. You’re not the only one going through what you’re going through. If God got you through, He will get me through! Find somebody that has gone through and succeeded what you are going through.
Resist him! In the process of resisting you are building spiritual muscle so you can stand tomorrow better than you’re standing today. Building muscle is important, especially when you get older. Those who are saved the longest sometimes forget that. We need to keep working out.
And don’t forget, it’s hard to fight the enemy that you’re sleeping with. Don’t entertain things you shouldn’t entertain. Watching what you shouldn’t watch on that one eyed devil. It brings problems with it. Just like a computer, junk it, junk out.
4 Rules of Engagement
1. Never lift anything above you’re head. Don’t get in over your head. Don’t go looking for devils. Know what you’re called to do and do that. Know your purpose
2. Never lift without a spotter. If you’re going to be in spiritual warfare the best thing you can do is find someone who will be with you in the process; if things start falling that person will lift the weight. You need a prayer partner that will step in and pray with you.
3. Always protect your knees, shoulders and you’re back.
4. Always rest after working your muscles. If you work out hard one day, don’t the next. When you exercise you’re muscles actually break down, like you’re damaging them. The next day they heal and they come together stronger than before. If you don’t rest in between your muscle never has the chance to heal and restore. It’s called keeping the Sabbath. You walk out of here with a stronger muscle than when you walked in .That’s what I try to help you do every weekend. I want to build spiritual muscle in this place and allow God to manifest.
Begin Your Resistance Regiment
Your spirit man is weak in some of you. There is no muscle, stamina or endurance. The least little thing throws you off. Don’t be a wimp. Paul said exercise profits little, but your spirit man needs exercise. Give Him 30 minutes a day. Why do we only give God what’s left, if we have time? God only accepts first fruit, the best. He wants the best of your day. He wants that tithe before you pay everybody else. We read everything before the Bible. We don’t read one chapter a day of His word. If you read 3 chapters a day you would read it through in a year. We need to start living eternally; be more focused on the place we will live forever.
I want you to get in shape. This is a spiritual gymnasium. It’s a hospital too, we’ll get you healed, but after you’re dismissed from the hospital we’ll get you to recuperate and build that muscle back. You stand with a praise, with your hands raised, a shout on your lips and a dance on your foot, as you do that you will send the devil packing and you will build spiritual muscle so you can stand powerfully!