I’ve begun a study on Beth Moore’s Praying God’s Word: Breaking Free from Spiritual Strongholds this past week. I had the book sitting on a shelf for ages, lent it out to a friend, finally got it back, and decided to finally start reading it myself.
As you can tell from past posts on my blog, I’ve really been wrestling with strongholds that have been revealed to me through the past year – some of which seem to be generational. I have had a great burden on my heart to break these strongholds in my own life, and also to break the chain of bondage before it starts in the next generation – my girls.
Beth Moore defines a stronghold as “anything that steals, kills, or destroys the abundant, fruitful life of a believer can be considered a stronghold of the enemy.” She also says, “Strongholds are thoughts taken captive to anything but Christ.”
The first chapter covers idolatry. “In one way or another, something else has become “god” in our lives – the object of our chief focus. . . . Until we turn from our idols to the one true God, we will never find liberty, for ‘where the Spirit of the Lord is, there is freedom’ (2 Cor. 3:17). One missing link in almost every captive life is the spirit of God’s lordship.”
In the introduction, she talks about “believers who live in daily defeat.” Oh, how I have struggled and fought and battled and wearied over that daily defeat! I have this running commentary recording going in circles in my mind, which I now realize is not “me” but Satan using these strongholds to pull me under and drown me. That broken record player actually became a stronghold of its own, because “as long as our minds rehearse the strength of our stronghold more than the strength of our God, we will be impotent.”
And impotent I felt – through prayer, business, physical health, everything. It was as if the more I tried to do anything the more defeated I became, until that recording became so loud and so insistent that I could hardly hear anything else.
Last week was BAD. BAD. I knew that I’ve been under attack for months and my husband was under attack for months, but it wasn’t until last week that I truly understood how bad it really was. Is it a coincidence that the attacks amplified exponentially last week, when I finally committed to begin this study? Or that God opened my eyes to see depth of the battleground? No, I think not.
This was my process of re-writing these verses into my own words. I used Bible.com to copy and paste each verse into Word. I read through them, highlighting and underlining parts of verses that struck me. After a while I realized that several things seemed to be repeating and a certain chord started to strike out at me, when I went to underline each verse, which led to a personal revelation: I had been blaming God for things he “allowed” to happen to me!
This is a sin that was holding me back from God. My hubris – that I had done everything right, so I didn’t deserve ______. Why would he do ______ to me? I had been trying to suppress it, but there it was. And as soon as I allowed it to lay out in the open, figure out why it was there, and deal with it, I was able to ask forgiveness.
Besides, as I’ve told a friend before, we deservedeath. We have no true rights under God. It is only because of his forgiveness and Christ’s blood that we are anything at all, and he made us adopted sons at that!
Below is my compilation of verses taken from this chapter. I’ve reworded them only just slightly to personalize the passages. I do love how they all came together. I plan to review this verses every day and pray over them. Perhaps taping them up on my mirror as a reminder.
(From the New Living Translation.)
Lord, You are a warrior, Yahweh is Your name! (Ex 15:13) My help comes from You; You who made the heavens and the earth! (Psalm 121:2) Those who fight against You, Oh Lord, will be shattered. You thunder against them from heaven, You judge throughout the earth. (1 Sam. 2:10) Lord, You do not give Your glory to anyone else, nor share Your praise with carved idols. (Isa. 42:8) You alone are God. You preserve us all. (Neh. 9:6)
Yours, O Lord, is the greatness, the power, the glory, the victory, and the majesty. Everything in the heavens and on the earth is Yours, O Lord, and this is Your Kingdom. I cannot see the whole scope of Your work from beginning to end. (Ecc. 3:11) God, You are greater than I can understand. (Job 36:26) Your thoughts are nothing like my thoughts, Lord, and Your ways are far beyond anything I could imagine. (Isa. 55:8-9)
You alone are my Rock and Salvation, my Fortress where I will not be shaken. (Ps. 62:6) You are the Lord and there is no other. (Isa.45:18) Christ, You are the visible image of the invisible God. You hold all creation together. (Col. 115:17) Everything You do reveals Your Glory and majesty. Your righteousness never fails. Ps. 111:2-4
God, you are not man – you do not lie. You are not human, so you do not change Your mind. You have never spoken and failed to act. You have never promised and not carried it through. (Num. 23:19) For Your Word holds true and we can trust in everything You do. Truly, You do not do wrong. You do not twist justice. (Job 34:12-15) All You do is just and good, and all Your commandments are trustworthy. You are forever true, to be obeyed faithfully and with integrity. (Ps. 111:7-8) Lord, You are righteous in everything You do. (Psalm 145:17)
You are the faithful God who keeps your covenant for a thousand generations and lavishes Your unfailing love on those who love You and obey Your commands. (Deut. 7:9) You love what is just and good. Your unfailing love fills the earth. (Psalm 33:45)
I will not tremble, I will not be afraid. Did You not proclaim Your purposes for me long ago? (Isa. 44:8) You are the One who says, “You are my people.” (Isa. 51:16) First you predicted my rescue, then you saved me, and proclaimed it to the world. (Isa. 43:10-12) You know the plans You have for me. They are plans for good and not for disaster, to give me a future and a hope. (Jer. 29:11)
I am your servant. I have been chosen to know you, believe in you, and understand that You above are God. (Isa. 43:12) Yet, my human hands can’t serve Your needs because You have no needs. You give life and breath to everything and You satisfy every need. (Acts 17:25)
I am Your witness: is there any other God? No, there is no other Rock – not one! (Isa. 44:8) You are the Rock, Your deeds are perfect. Everything You do is just and fair. (Deut. 32:4) Lord, You always keep your promises. (Ps. 145:13) I can never escape Your Spirit! I can never get away from Your presence! Everywhere I go, Your hand will guide me and your strength will support me. (Ps. 139:7-10) And You have put Your words in my mouth and hidden me safely in Your hand. (Isa. 51:16) Whom have I in heaven but you? I desire you more than anything on the earth. (Isa. 73:25) I adore You; You’re the One over all things. (1 Chron. 29:11)
I know there is only one God, You, and I live for You. (1 Cor. 8:6) I know the greatness of You, Lord – that my God is greater than any other God. (Ps. 135:5) O Lord my God, You have performed many wonders for me. Your plans for me are too numerous to list. You have no equal. (Psalm 40:5) You give power to me when I am weak and strength to me when I am powerless. When I trust in You, Lord, I will find new strength. (Isa. 40:29,31) Let me be thankful and please You by worshipping You with holy fear and awe. (Heb. 12:28) And your Sun of Righteousness will rise with healing in His Wings for me and those that fear Your name. And I will go free, leaping with joy. (Mal 4:2)
Lord, You have always been my home. Forever, You are my God. (Psalm 90:1-2) I make this choice to love you, O Lord my God, obeying You and committing myself firmly to You. This is the key to my life. (Deut. 30:20)
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