Colossians 1:17 says that Jesus holds all things together. All things includes you. What needs to be held together in you today? Emotions, thoughts, the ability to cope?
Jesus will comfort, strengthen, and supernaturally assist you as you cry out for his help. Listen in to today's podcast episode and be prayed for, or read prayer below. The prayer in the podcast is similar but has some spontaneous expressions. Respond to the simple prompts as led for sweet and satisfying time with Jesus! 💞
Prayer exercise: Jesus will hold you. Let’s pray.
Jesus we come to you expecting. We come with a simple cry of “Lord I desperately need you to hold me together.”
Tell Jesus that right now.
Thank you for holding this one Jesus. May they sense you near.
You are our source of hope and life and new beginnings. Your mercies are new every morning. You forgive. Each prayer is an opportunity for a new start. Great is your faithfulness. Thank you for your tender mercies, thank you for letting this one know in their weakness that your grace is sufficient for them, your power is made perfect in their weakness.
Build a habit in them God to confess their weaknesses to you for your power to manifest. Your grace is sufficient, your power is made perfect in our weakness.
You are the God who sees us and gave all of yourself for us.
Let this one know that you see them. Lift their spiritual eyes to see you, to respond to you. Where are they weary God, where do they need a fresh revelation to turn sorrow into joy? Show them how the pressures that lead to breaking are part of the process of being made new. Soften their hearts towards the presence and work of the Holy Spirit right now.
Holy spirit come…. (repeat to yourself)
Breathe new life Jesus.
Hold them together in your strength, draw them near.
Agree. “Yes Jesus, draw near to me.”
Holy Spirit speak into their need, whatever it may be. (Give silence…)
Counsel them in their relationships, grant them wisdom in their decisions, sanctify them with your word. May they be responsive to your gentle correction and discern your still small voice.
Thank you Jesus for holding this one together in your power. May that be their continual confession, “Hold me together Jesus. I need you.” Amen.
Do you know someone who needs to know that Jesus will hold them together in love? Without shame and condemnation? Please share this blog post with them! Blessings!
Today being Good Friday, we’ll look upon Jesus’ suffering, because the punishment that was upon him brings us peace, and by his wounds we are healed, Isaiah 53:5.
One of the most beautiful promises Jesus brings us is a promise to renew our mind, to calm, soothe, and still our emotions. Jesus puts us back in our right mind. It is a continual renewal of thoughts that he promises. It is experienced through remaining with Him. But everything is not always up and to the right as Christians. We struggle. It’s a clue indicating our critical need to deepen in relationship with Jesus. In Western culture, anxiety was at epidemic proportions prior to the pandemic, so what now? Of course, it has increased. No need to quote statistics, we are living it out, we know anxiety has increased.
Does Jesus care? Does He understand the anxiety that overwhelms? Yes, he does and we find clues of his extreme mental and emotional distress when we read the accounts of Jesus praying in the Garden of Gethsemane before he goes to the cross. The book of Mark and Matthew inform us that Jesus admits to his disciples that his soul is overwhelmed to the point of death. The book of Mark tells us that he fell to the ground and prayed. He didn’t kneel and pray, he fell to the ground. Both Mark and Matthew tell us he agonized for a long time in prayer, praying 3 different times, “My Father, if it is possible, may this cup be taken from me. Yet not what I will, but what you will.” The book of Luke reveals that he was sweating profusely in this agonizing time of prayer, and was so disturbed within, it triggered a rare physiological condition where he sweat blood. The condition is called hematidrosis and is extremely rare, with only a handful of documented cases. All who experienced it were victims of extreme mental and emotional trauma and terrifying violence.
Piece all those Gospel clues together. Jesus falls to the ground, a sign of physical weakness from overwhelming internal turmoil. He agonizes in prayer 3 different times through the night. He is not getting a good night’s sleep before going to the cross. He is running on no sleep. And though an angel comes to strengthen him, Luke records that after, he was still in anguish, Luke 22:44. Jesus kept praying, and doing so even more earnestly. In this state, he was sweating profusely, his sweat mixed with drops of blood, the drops falling to the ground.
When you piece the Gospel accounts together, can you see how clear it is that Jesus was experiencing mental and emotional distress at a level no one else ever will? Your worst panic attack? Your soul crushing depression? Jesus knows. He went there. He bore the burden. He experienced it all. He carried the weight of it all upon Himself and took all human brokenness, all sin, all shame, all sickness to the cross.
In the midst of this distress, Jesus gives his disciples a prayer challenge, “Could you not keep watch for one hour?" He was worried for them, urging his disciples to watch and pray so they would not fall into temptation. The spirit is willing, but the flesh is weak. He knew the spiritual traps coming to test Peter. He had just told Simon Peter after the Passover meal, "Satan has asked to sift you like wheat", Luke 22:31.
Peter's saving grace was that Jesus prayed for Peter's faith not to fail, Luke 22:32. Praise God today that He is your continual intercessor...
Hebrews 7:25- "Therefore he is able to save completely those who come to God through him, because he always lives to intercede for them."
Are you sleeping? Tell God, confess your weaknesses. Wait in the mercy of His presence. Call on help from the Holy Spirit if you do not know what to pray, Romans 8:26-27.
Peter and the other disciples slept despite the warnings. And the consequences are immediately obvious. Peter responds in the flesh at the first temptation, acting violently, pulling his sword and cutting off the ear of the high priest’s servant who come to seize Jesus, Mark 14:47. Jesus however responds in the Spirit, taking the man’s ear and putting it back on his head, fully restoring his ear, Luke 22:51.
Flesh versus Spirit! What a difference in terms of outcome, Romans 8:6!
Let the example of Jesus urging his disciples to watch and pray challenge you to take some quiet time. Assess. What is the state of your walk with Jesus today? Are you prayed up? Are you in the flesh or in the Spirit? Take all anxiety and internal upset to Jesus to be strengthened by Him. He understands your anxiety. He's endured on your behalf. He promises to comfort you. Practice staying longer in His presence, resting under the covering of His precious blood shed on the cross. Please visit our podcast page to find some inspiration to linger longer with God. Amen.
It is never comfortable to see a leader in a moment of fear. It is unnerving. We want our leaders to have it together, to show strength and speak words that inspire, calling us to face dangers with courage. So then, what about Jesus, the greatest leader that there ever was, or ever will be? What about his moments of soul crushing emotion he let show in the Garden of Gethsemane?
Mark 14:34-35- He told them, “My soul is crushed with grief to the point of death. Stay here and keep watch with me.” He went on a little farther and fell to the ground. He prayed that, if it were possible, the awful hour awaiting him might pass him by.
Operative words... "He told them..."
Jesus didn't hide; and most likely couldn't have hid, the extreme distress that had begun to consume him. The King of kings bared his soul to those closest to Him. His example and his experience in the Garden of Gethsemane is worth closer examination for our own mental and emotional health.
Does Jesus understand your roller coaster of emotions? Does He really feel the depths of soul darkness and depression you feel? Your belief can be found in how often you say, "God, do you see my distress? Do you care? Can't you see my suffering?"
About 13 years ago, I happened upon a book by a Chief Medical Examiner (CME) named Dr. Frederick Zugibe. Over the course of his lifetime as a forensic pathologist, he felt called to give Jesus an autopsy by reaching back through the centuries. He saw forensic detail in the Gospel accounts that gave him enough credible evidence to report what Jesus suffered at each point of his walk to the cross; and then conclude how He died. His forensic examination included all aspects of Jesus' physical suffering, including mental and emotional distress. As a CME who performed over 10K autopsies over his career, in one of the most violent counties in NY, he felt confident that his assessment of Jesus' suffering was credibly grounded in first hand experience and research.
I admit when I read the book, I had to put it down many times. It opened up for me a view into Christ's suffering that I never saw. Reading what Jesus would have felt in all of his bodily systems, especially his mental and emotional state, was shocking and moving. Where before I scanned over the 3 Gospel accounts that record Jesus saying his soul was overwhelmed to the point of death, now I stop and enter that moment with Him, understanding a little better, from a medical and human perspective, what was happening within Him. I love Him more.
If you want to know Jesus better, I invite you to join in this Thursday night April 1st at 8PM EST for a forensic look into Jesus' suffering in the garden. It will be about a 1 hour presentation with medical conclusions from Dr. Zugibe, as well as a few prayer prompts along the way. You'll have moments of silence to reflect, talk to Him, and do what He did, confess your distress. I greatly encourage you to look upon Jesus' mental and emotional suffering. The deeper you connect with His pain, the less you will say, "God, do you care?"
"Watch and pray" with Jesus in to the Garden of Gethsemane! Take a closer look at what he endured before anyone laid a hand on Him! This event will be held live on Youtube, as well as on our Into the Waters Facebook page, and within our private FB group Peace Be Still.
Here is the Youtube link or click on the picture below! Set a reminder for yourself!
When will you be complete? When you get that degree, get married, attain life goals? When you finally reach some random, soon to come moment and “feel” complete? Any Christian struggling with thoughts of “I am not enough. I am not yet complete” is off base and trapped in worldly thinking that will disturb your peace. The truth is that apart from him, everyone is incomplete, even the people who think they have it all together, whose secular lives we may envy. We are only complete through our oneness in Christ. And then, we are not our own; we’ve been made one with God, bought at a high price, 1 Corinthians 6:19-20. Now we are to identify completely with Christ, worshipping him through the expression of our lives in order to reveal Him. As we approach celebrating His death and Resurrection, meditate on your oneness with God. Christ’s shared life, shared power, shared promises make us complete, one with God, able to experience at deeper levels the peace and power of God...i.e. the living Christ. If you want to be led in an interactive and quiet exercise, to celebrate oneness with Him, please listen to today’s podcast! ✨🙏🏽Click on the image above to be linked to the episode on Apple podcasts!
The first time God mentions prayer is in Genesis 20:7.
He tells a king named Abimelek that he should not attempt to get a woman named Sarah as a wife because she is already married. God reveals that the woman’s husband (Abraham) lied to him telling him that Sarah was his sister. In fact as we know, Sarah was in fact Abraham’s wife. So God tells Abimelek to return Sarah to Abraham; and that Abraham would PRAY for him, Genesis 20:7. Abraham PRAYS for Abimelek; and God then heals Abimelek and his household so they could have children again, Genesis 20:17.
What is truly wild about this first account of prayer is that God abundantly blesses Abraham in the middle of his sin! And even more interesting is that it is a repeated sin! See Genesis Chapter 12:10-20 which details the first time he lied about Sarah being his sister!
In the middle of being caught in his sin, Abimelek gives Abraham flocks and servants and land and money, Genesis 20:`14-16!!! In Genesis 12:16, Pharaoh gives Abraham large amounts of flocks after he takes Sarah into his palace. He keeps the gifts! The gall! And then gets away with it even after being found out. No rebuke from God! Abraham is treated with a great amount of favor that is radically unreasonable, especially since he started all the trouble by lying!
Take a minute to wonder, why would God have a man who lied TWICE about the status of his wife (to save his own neck) pray for Abimelek? Early in chapter 20, you learn that Abraham told Abimelek that Sarah was his sister because he was afraid of being killed, thinking Abimelek would forcefully take Sarah from him by taking his life. In reasoning this way, he put Sarah in great danger, but God intervened and kept Abimelek from touching Sarah, Genesis 20:6.
You learn that Abraham’s fears and schemes for self-preservation drove him to do this. You could make a case for Abraham’s fears and justify the lie pretty easily. Abimelek was a Philistine king of a nation with war-like values. Clearly Genesis 12 gives precedence that the rulers of these lands took woman as they so pleased. They were cultures that loved self-pleasure, worshipped false gods, and could be violent to outsiders, . Therefore the fact that Abraham feared for his life was reasonable. But still, by lying, he put his wife’s life on the line to save his own neck. God could have punished Abraham for this, still saved Sarah and Abimelek, but that is not what he did. Instead God tells Abimelek that Abraham is a prophet who would pray and save his life. So here you see God calling Abraham out on his God given position as prophet whose prayers would save Abimelek’s life, Genesis 20:7. God also warns Abimelek that if he did not allow Abraham to pray for him, in his disobedience, he would die, Genesis 20:7.
By going through those details, you learn what prayer is… judging in a way that intervenes in order to save. This a key aspect of prayer... modeling God's character towards us, not treating us as our sins deserve. This is the biblical definition of the Hebrew word palal. This essentially means mercy, judging with mercy in order to save. Mercy must always be part of prayer.
God in his mercy saved us. Jesus is our ultimate intercessor continually interceding on our behalf.
Therefore he is able to save completely those who come to God through him, because he always lives to intercede for them.- Hebrews 7:25
God developed that lesson in Abraham by saving him from his own stupid mistake. He would have realized the hand of God intervening on his behalf because Abimelek came to him and told him that God appeared to him in his dream and told him about Abraham’s lie, Genesis 20:8-10. And then when Abraham would have probably expected to die on the spot, instead Abimelek makes Abraham exceptionally wealthy in a sudden outpouring of gifts!
God saved his neck and then blessed him in abundance! This is the heart of God!
What would your response be if you were caught in a lie by someone who was pre-disposed to violent ways? Wouldn’t you be afraid? But instead, God blesses Abraham through the man pre-disposed to violence… Abimelek! That is some incentive to pray! And this is a key to prayer. God’s mercy incentivizes you to pray! I imagine Abraham’s prayers being fervent and lively for Abimelek based upon God treating him with such unreasonable mercy!
So what is a prayer? It is a request asking God to intervene with acts of mercy in order to save.
Therefore, if you ever want someone to pray effectively for you, ask them if they have experienced God’s mercy in these ways? Was their life saved by Jesus? Have they experienced him intervening on their behalf saving them from stupid decisions, self-preserving ways? Has God supplied their needs and blessed them in unexpected and sudden ways? If you find that type of person, you have found a treasure. They will pray for you in a way that judges you with mercy, intervening in order to save. This is what true prayer is.
Peace in turbulent times.
First, thank you very much for the many notes of shared concerned in response to my last email to you about being in prayer for January 6th. The Holy Spirit is burdening his people to intercede for the state of our nation and world; and it is clear some of you are taking it very seriously. May more align their hearts with what the Spirit of the LORD is saying right now.
It is the character of Jesus to warn people to discern the times. And while the turn on a calendar page means a new year, the momentum of reality follows us into 2021. Turbulent is a word that comes to mind for this year. So critical to anchor ourselves in Christ.
He has a word of the Spirit against the word "turbulent". And it is "dunamis"... power. His excellence of power, his supernatural supply, His supernatural character is a hope to anchor our soul in turbulent times.
Because God wanted to make the unchanging nature of his purpose very clear to the heirs of what was promised, he confirmed it with an oath. God did this so that, by two unchangeable things in which it is impossible for God to lie, we who have fled to take hold of the hope set before us may be greatly encouraged. We have this hope as an anchor for the soul, firm and secure. It enters the inner sanctuary behind the curtain, - Hebrews 6:17-19
It is a critical time to enter the inner sanctuary, the place where intimacy with Jesus is nurtured, where we are strengthened, where we rise in His power. It is a critical time to live in the power of His Name and promises. We have this treasure in jars of clay to show that this all-surpassing POWER is of God and NOT of ourselves, 2 Corinthians 4:7. Treasure within. All surpassing power made clear. It will be clear in these times who is living in His power versus their own.
You have opportunity to dig up the treasure through an upcoming session set for February 6th at 9am. Practice His presence, unburden and cleanse, tune to His whispers, rest, meditate on His promises, and rise in His power. The session is entitled "Dunamis", the power of God in you, the power of God through you. Click on the image ABOVE to sign up! The event is free, but donations greatly appreciated. I am in full time in ministry as of January 1st, and raising funds, as well as investing in greater reach which requires additional funding. God shall abundantly supply! God's favor upon whomever feels led to donate!
Note that... The Dunamis session was held for a private group a couple of weeks ago. There was lively and dynamic discussion after about what God spoke to participants, as I was privileged to be part of initial debrief.
Here is one participant's feedback to me for the Dunamis session-
"God did a wonderful work in me through it!!! I feel so free I wanna dance!!!! And that's not my nature!"
BE SURE TO CHECK OUT THE NEW PODCAST EPISODES IF YOU HAVEN'T LISTENED IN AWHILE! RELEASES MONDAY-FRIDAY! INTERACTIVE PRAYER EXERCISES WITH SCRIPTURAL CONTEXT TO INSPIRE YOUR TIME ALONE WITH GOD! BELOW IS DESCRIPTION FROM MONDAY AND TUESDAY OF THIS WEEK. ONE IS USING BREATH PRAYER AND SILENCE. THE OTHER USES VISUALIZATION BASED UPON SCRIPTURE.
(Into the Waters Ministry, Inc resources the earnest, helping them linger longer with God, to draw near and know Christ. Now more than ever, we need to know Christ and practice settling our souls in His presence, anchoring in His promises. Will you help us expand reach and impact? Listenership for our Peace Be Still prayer podcast is steadily growing! So many more can benefit! Please consider a donation! Help us match the $1K per month challenge pledge! Every donation is a blessing! Thank you for considering it. Now on to today's interactive Advent exercise...)
This is the 10th exercise released over the last 10 days for the Advent season! Find the interactive prayer exercises on the podcast tab or click above to find the podcast on Apple podcasts! Below is the content of today's Peace Be Still episode if you prefer to read it to engage. Blessings!
Hello Gina from Into the Waters, welcome to Peace Be Still and this Advent season! It’s Friend Friday, a time to experience the presence and person of Jesus Christ, Immanuel, with us is God. Isaiah 7:14 says the LORD himself will give you a sign: The virgin will conceive and give birth to a son, and will call him Immanuel. Let’s call upon His Name today.
Yesterday’s episode shared in the prayer portion that Isaiah wrote those prophetic words 700 years before Jesus was born. We see those words reappear in Matthew 1. An angel of the LORD appears to Joseph telling him not to be afraid, but to take Mary as his wife, because the child within her is from the Holy Spirit; he should be named Jesus, because he will save his people from their sins. And then it says that "all of these supernatural events took place to fulfill what the LORD has said through the prophet Isaiah: The virgin will conceive and give birth to a son, and they will call him Immanuel, which means “God with us.”
Jesus, God with us, fulfilled that prophecy as he ministered on the earth, and continues to fulfill that prophecy for you today. God is with you. Deuteronomy 31:6 is a promise from Jesus in the Old Testament- Be strong and courageous. Do not be afraid or terrified because of them, for the Lord your God goes with you; he will never leave you nor forsake you.”
Remember Jesus is timeless, eternal, that Old Testament prophecy is from Jesus himself. We get a glimpse of His eternity and coming from the prophecy in Micah 5:2-
“But you, Bethlehem Ephrathah,
though you are small among the clans of Judah, out of you will come for me
one who will be ruler over Israel, whose origins are from of old, from ancient times.”
Jesus, a leader coming from ancient times,? Yes. NKJV says "Whose goings forth are from of old, from everlasting.” The Amplified version clarifies his goings forth saying- His goings forth (appearances) are from long ago, From ancient days.”
The prophet declared God himself was coming! And yet Jesus has always been with His people, from the creation of physical time and space, Jesus has been with us!
So today, let’s proclaim His presence with us. Just position to repeat, affirm, and invite His presence with an open and receptive spirit.
Jesus, you are with me.
I carry your Spirit within me.
Nothing can separate me from your love.
Immanuel, you are with me.
You will never leave me or forsake me.
No one can snatch me out of your hand.
You are with me in the storm.
You speak to the wind and the waves within.
“Peace Be Still.”
You are with me in my fear.
I am not to be terrified or afraid.
You go with me.
You promise to guide me.
Your rod and your staff they comfort me.
Save me from guiding myself.
I need your wisdom.
By your Spirit, whisper wisdom.
Now wait quietly in His presence.
Help me obey your counsel.
Help me surrender to your whispers.
You go before me.
I am not alone.
Jesus, you are with me.
Immanuel... with me is God.
Hello! Happy Monday! Or not. There is a ton of heaviness and angst many are carrying right now due to the world's current state of affairs.
In early March, just five days before everything got shut down in my state of New York, I was at a Christian women's conference. Jennie Allen was the last speaker, and she had us do a listening prayer exercise. We were to ask God a question, what is a key for my faith this year? What came to me was "trust". At that time I was in a good place in terms of trusting God, so I wondered what that meant. And very shortly I was about find out. I would definitely need to deepen in trust.
We are each experiencing our own levels of anxiety and upset and upheaval since the pandemic changed our lives. Some have experienced loss in terms of a job, a family member, perspective on life. We are a nation in turmoil.. Our daily lives scrambled. One day we hear "x", the next day it is changed to "y". What should have been settled on November 3rd is not done, or is it? Conflict, divide, only seems to be intensifying already fragile connections and relationships. Are we facing another shut down? Depends who you ask! Truly our foundations are being shaken. We are forced to examine if our faith is built on solid rock or sand, Matthew 7:24-29 .
God IS calling us to deeper levels of trust. Trust in His Sovereignty. Trust in His Word to feed our soul and satisfy every need. Trust in the day-to-day and let go. Trust and freshly discover He provides for our soul’s every need!
"Who of you can add a single hour to your life?" Matthew 6:27
Jesus is calling us to live hour-by- hour, moment-by-moment, not to forecast. We must let go of false notion that we have control over anything. "Trust ME."
We are in a wilderness experience as the body of Christ. We are walking in territory that requires clinging to Jesus.
So how are you doing with that? Is His WORD feeding your soul so that you get up from His presence satisfied? King David's wilderness words of "When I remember You on my bed, I meditate on You in the night watches. Because You have been my help, therefore in the shadow of Your wings I will rejoice. My soul follows close behind You; Your right hand upholds me.
Psalm 63 reveals King David was up through the night. Not ruminating on certain doom, but meditating on the faithfulness of God. He was clinging to the LORD. His soul following closely behind Him. He envisioned following behind God. His Good Shepherd in front of him. God's right hand of power upholding him.
Into the Waters resources offer you ways to cling to God. To visualize His hand holding yours. To rest beneath the shadow of His wings, offering interactive exercises to reflect on the faithfulness of God. We've had online prayer and meditation sessions; and the testimonies that come out are always irrefutable of His presence and comfort and power touching participants! We have a Monday-Friday daily podcast that is growing in daily listens, and producing similar praise of God's presence and power. People say they weep in His presence. They are connecting with Him, being fed and nurtured in the secret place with Him. So I invite you to listen to the podcast for the first time, or again as we launch a new format that starts today!
This week we are introducing the podcast in theme format with repeatable spiritual disciplines to practice on the same day every day of the week. Here is how it will break out:
Today's podcast is a breath prayer of "Lord Jesus, have mercy on me." You'll hear a brief background on breath prayer and then be led into the exercise. Gentle instrumentals end the session so that you can practice on your own and end in your own timing. You can find Peace Be Still Daily Prayer Podcast on all major podcast providers. Try it out! Would love to hear your feedback after!
And finally, this ministry is a by faith ministry. We rely on one-time offerings and monthly donors. No pressure, but know that your donation will go to expanding reach, expanding offerings, and pressing in to our mission to help people linger longer with God in prayer, to draw near and know Christ! See our donate page for secure link if you want to support our prayer mission. Blessings!
Below is content from today's podcast. It is part of a series on spiritual weapons of warfare. If asked about weapons of warfare, some people give a blank stare, some say it is making reference to the armor of God. However, the armor is not the weapons, it's the armor. Some say our weapon is the WORD of God which is true, but more so on terms of where all the weapons are found. It's plural, not one weapon, but weapons with an "s".
God has given us a powerful arsenal of weaponry. All without blood and gore. The blood has already been let by Him. No He has other weapons we are to use and they lead to life, power, healing, and intimacy with Him. In 2 Chronicles chapter 20 alone, I found 30 weapons of warfare!
Do you think you could name 10 weapons of warfare off the top of your head? Stop right now and try to name 10 spiritual weapons of warfare that are mighty in God for the destruction of strongholds, 2 Corinthians 10:3-5.
Talking of spiritual weapons of warfare and destruction of strongholds can feel very elusive or like a high-minded philosophical discussion on spiritual matters far beyond our understanding. But this is not to be the case. If you take the time to understand what the LORD is saying, you'll find very practical insights to apply within that lead to freedom and deep healing. Of course this is not to be done alone, but with the help of and in the presence of our safe and Holy friend, Jesus. His friendship is a powerful weapon of warfare to destroy fortified places within us...
For more, this is where I'll transition you to today's podcast content. Read below the line for its content, or to participate by listening and engaging in the interactive prayer exercises, please visit the podcast page to tune into the entire series. You can find Peace Be Still Daily Prayer Download on Apple Podcasts, Google podcasts, Iheart radio, Spreaker, Spotify and more. Follow the program on your podcast provider to be notified of new episodes! (Note: The number of listens daily for the podcast started in May continues to grow. We in the ministry are so excited for this holy work of inspiring people to pray! To donate because you believe in our mission, and so we can reach more, please click on the donate button in the column to the right! God bless your generosity!)
PODCAST EPISODE 150- SPIRITUAL WEAPON #6- FRIENDSHIP WITH GOD
Today we are meditating upon the friendship of God. It’s weapon #6 in this series on praying for
victory over fears and negative counsel of the soul. Why is friendship a weapon? The language of
weapon comes from 2 Corinthians 10:4-5. These supernatural weapons have power to bring down
strongholds. Some strongholds require outside forces. And friendship with God is a magnificent
weapon on these terms.
But first, what is a stronghold? Do you have strongholds? Strongholds are fortified places of safety,
arguments and reasonings on which you rely to stay safe. Is this good or bad? Both, but in terms of
being weapons of warfare to bring down strongholds, they are places that must be torn down. These
negative strongholds are set up in the mind, affecting how you present yourself to others and attempt to control outcomes. It is a state of mind where in conscious and unconscious ways you fortify your soul in ways contrary to God.
Here are some examples:
It takes a lot of energy to hold your ground in these fortified spaces within. You alone are the one fighting to keep others out, and it is a long and lonely battle. It’s a battle you are losing at the expense of peace and power and healing God promises.
But we are stubborn and resistant in holding our ground! And we think we can compartmentalize these spaces in such a way that doesn’t affect us. For the most part, if we keep people at safe distances, they know little about our strongholds. Yet they do make up subtle nuances of our personality, only becoming blatantly obvious when anyone gets too close. If anyone does get too close, then look out, because you know how to keep people out. And these are places and spaces and thoughts and feelings that God’s word says that are strongholds. “I’m holding on to my shame.” “I won’t let myself get hurt again”. And “I cannot forgive” is completely contrary to God. These are places that must be destroyed.
And He is the friend, the safe place, the gentle Savior who we can trust to tear down all our arguments and have an open concept design within, a place without walls and barriers within our hearts. He becomes our stronghold and we are set free!
Friendship with God as a weapon is referenced through scripture. But since we are meditating upon 2
Chronicles 20 in this series, related to weapons of warfare, friendship with God is mentioned in verse 7 and is today's weapon.
In verse 7, the king reminds God of the covenant he made with Abraham, whom God called his friend. We see this language of Abraham being God's friend in verse 7. And we too have that privilege of being a friend of God! Jesus says in John 15:15, “I have called you friends, for everything I learned from my Father, I make known to you.” As our friend, Jesus shares his secrets with us! Psalm 25:14 says that the secret friendship of the LORD is with those who fear him. It says the Lord confides in those who fear him, he makes his covenant known to them.
The LORD confiding in you and making his covenant known in the deepest recesses of your soul will set you free from strongholds. He will tear down those walls of shame, fear, anger, unforgiveness,
He wants to confide in you! He wants to reveal the riches of His covenant in ways that set you free,
heal, redeems, makes new. I was with a friend this week who recounted a recent time that God spoke one word to her that transformed her whole perspective. It was about a stronghold of control. As she continued to share, out came a supernatural outpouring of wisdom and holy counsel of all she learned just from that one word from her holy friend Jesus! I said, “Wow, you got all of that from just one word from Jesus?” “Yes!” We laughed and marveled at the goodness and power that comes from just one word Jesus speaks to our soul!
So today, do not resist our Holy friend. Consider how your strongholds manifest today. What are you
compartmentalizing? How are you keeping him out, choosing instead to fortify your position? By
arguing with God or others? Are you stuffing your feelings by numbing them say with food, by over-eating? Do you have passive aggressive tendencies? Are you withdrawing or hiding from those closest to you? Jesus can be trusted.
He is safe. You won’t know the truth until you surrender and trust Him. And the simplest way to start is to talk openly and honestly with Him as friend. “Jesus, every time I feel vulnerable or anxious, I am
reaching for food.” “Jesus, I don’t think anyone will ever really love me. So I am keeping busy to avoid intimacy. Or I am reading romance novels to get what I need or I am watching “x” to feel what I long for. I’m keeping you out of these places.”
Confide. It’s powerful. Life changing. It will destroy the arguments draining you of life, of power.
Use this quiet time to ask Jesus to tear down strongholds within. “Jesus tear down my strongholds. Ask Jesus, what are my strongholds? Set me free.”
(Note in the podcast, a gentle instrumental plays at the end for a short, but quiet time to pray that prayer above and enjoy His friendship.)
Jesus said in John 14:25, we would be reminded of His promises because He would send the Holy Spirit to remind us. Then He says, “Peace I leave with you; my peace I give to you. I do not give to you as the world gives. Do not let your hearts be troubled and do not be afraid.”
He has left his peace with his believers. We must respond. We must bring ourselves into His presence for peace.
I woke this morning very troubled. I confess many of the things going on in this nation have me carrying burdens that cause me concern. It's stealing my peace. I instinctively know that when I am restless in this way, I need Jesus to calm me. This morning I read Psalm 94 verse 18 and it expressed what I was feeling. I felt as though I was slipping. The psalmist captured what I couldn't put words to. My emotions were feeling like they were in a continual state of slipping. Typically slipping only lasts a split second and then you are either on the ground or you've stabilized. But to have a lingering feeling of being in the state of slipping is very uncomfortable. I needed to bring myself into His presence for him to make that uncomfortable feeling go away. I needed His peace.
Jesus is always concerned about any state of heart trouble we are in. He cares about your anxieties and wants to allay our fears. He has always known and still knows that the message of the world will steal our peace, creating anxiety and trouble within. So He has sent His helper, the Advocate, to calm, soothe, and still us, to remind us of the supernatural peace that Christ gives.
Today let’s work with the Holy Spirit and pray into the peace Christ has left us.
Let's pray... GO THROUGH EACH BULLET POINT SLOWLY. DON'T RUSH YOURSELF. (note- if you want to be led in an audio version of this, please go to the Podcast tab above and listen to episode 135- Agreeing with Jesus' promise for peace)
After you are done, share this exercise with a friend!
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Prayer is Gift!
Into the Waters Ministry is a 501(C)3 public charity. Our mission is to inspire you to linger longer with God, to draw near and know Christ. For those willing, it is a place of supernatural hope and healing. I know this first hand. My name is Gina; and I'm the founder of the ministry. My 20+ year journey with God has been centered on immersing myself in the safe relationship God offers, learning about the power of surrender, and receiving His life in greater measure! I've experienced radical healing in mind, body, and spirit and believe God for more! I long for others to position themselves for the same! Into the Waters' resources help you spend quality time with God to enter His rest and receive His divine provision. Let us help you experience more of God! Read the blogs, try the exercises, participate in online sessions! His promises for life and wholeness are offered to all! But you have to say "Yes!"