The two things that hold you back the most can be overcome by acting on the Word of God. The Bible not only reveals what holds you back, but it also tells you how to beat them.
Did you know that most Christians don’t live exciting and powerful lives? Most Believers live in a sort of Twilight Zone, a gray area between being weak and being numb. How come? Mostly because of weak and watered down teaching and preaching.
See, for centuries, churches have been teaching people how to protect themselves from backsliding, how to defend what they believe, how to try to hold on until Jesus comes back and the Kingdom of God is established.
Jesus taught that the Kingdom of God ISN’T something that we sit around and wait for. No, He said, “The Kingdom of Heaven is at hand.” At hand; within reach, here and now. It’s here if you’ll stretch out your hand and touch it. That’s what Jesus taught. Matthew 10:7 says that.
That’s why His disciples weren’t a bunch of defeated whimlings scared of rejection and afraid of backsliding. They were full of faith, power and the fruits of the Holy Spirit! That’s the way God has planned to work in YOUR life too!
It doesn’t matter HOW bleak things seem, how many people are coming against you, or how much pressure you’re facing in life. Jesus has a power to bring you into power and blessing, “now, in this life.”
You say, “Pastor Steve, how can I turn things around?” Well, first of all, you never win when you’re on the defensive. Only when you’re on the offensive can you gain ground. That’s important.
You never have power or authority by giving it to the ones who are trying to hold you back. When you weakly ask the one who is coming against you whether or not you can obey God, you’ll never be victorious that way. You HAVE to step out in faith!
Can you imagine Jesus asking the devil’s permission to cast out a demon? NO! He just did the will of the Father and let God take care of the results. That’s what YOU have to do! You obey God and let Him take care of the results.
Remember, the devil has already been defeated. God says in Colossians 2:15 that, Jesus has ALREADY defeated the devil, and taken back everything he has stolen from God’s people. “Having spoiled (taken the goods from) principalities and powers (the forces of Hell), He made a show of them, openly triumphing over them in it.” The whole universe, Heaven and Hell watched as Jesus openly defeated satan and his forces! You need to KNOW that the devil is a defeated enemy.
When Jesus taught, the common people heard Him gladly. It was the religious people who would listen to Jesus but wouldn’t believe what He was saying. Hearing the truth doesn’t mean that you’re receiving the truth.
Jesus said that you would receive power when the Holy Spirit comes upon you and you begin to seek God through prayer, faith and obedience. And, He gives you power to the degree that you will act on it.
Jesus acted on the Holy Spirit’s power fully. Not only did Jesus minister in power, but Matthew 11:1 tells us that He GAVE that power to His followers! They went out and found that they didn’t have to shrink back from the devil, but that the devil would shrink back from them!
They were thrilled! All their lives they had felt they needed to hunker down, keep their mouths shut and just settle for what life gave them! Now, they found out that Jesus had given them the power to go out and cast out devils from peoples’ lives!
See, when you start getting the Bible in your heart and mind, it changes your character and your understanding. You begin to relate to the Government of Heaven, and operate according to God’s laws and principles. You begin to pray in faith instead of worrying yourself into an early grave! You get up and get going instead of sitting in that rut until you die.
The Book of Acts, gives us account after the exciting account of the Believers going forward in the power of the Holy Spirit. They had all found out that in their own strength, they were weak, afraid and not able to do very much. But, in God’s strength, they were strong, bold and able to do all things through Christ!
Only when you know your own weakness, can you know God’s power. That’s why He has called me to minister to those who already know their own weakness – because these are the ones that can be readily filled with God’s power!
I am sent by God to help you get into faith and to overcome those forces that keep holding you back!
He has shown me that fear is destroyed by faith. We are here to bring these Bible truths to you and feed them to you until your inner man gets a mighty appetite for the Bible. “Faith comes from hearing and hearing the Word of God (Romans 10:17).”
Compromise has held you back for too long, and God has sent me to help those who have given away their spiritual authority through compromise. The truth is that compromise is destroyed by commitment. Make a decision, commit to it and stick with it! You and I both know people who, in a time of need made promises to God, and then have compromised. Now, they feel weak, afraid and are defeated before they even enter the place of prayer!
When God reveals enough of His will to you that you make a promise to Him, He is helping you to make a commitment! Now, you need to stick with it!
Then, He has called me to help people rid themselves of bitterness. Bitterness will hold you back more than almost anything else. Bitterness is destroyed by confrontation. Go ahead and face those issues, forgive others as you would like to be forgiven, and root out that bitterness!
Bitterness is not of God; sweetness is!
Other believers have let themselves be hindered by rebellion. They don’t want to let ANYBODY tell them what to do! They refuse to admit that God has set anyone over them in the Body of Christ! Yet, they claim to believe the Bible. Rebellion against authority renders them powerless in the things of God.
There are so many verses on the operation and government of God! Ephesians 4:12; Act 15; 1 Thes. 5:12-13, 1 Timothy 5:17.
I remember the first time, as a baby Christian, I ran across Hebrews 13:17. “Obey them have the rule over you, and submit yourselves; for they watch over your souls, as they must give account, that they may do it with joy, and not with grief; for that is unprofitable for you.” It had never dawned on me that I had little power because I wasn’t under submission to anyone! Rebellion is destroyed by godly obedience.
I learned to submit to my Pastor, who was in submission to godly men over him. He never told me to do ANYTHING that was contrary to the Bible. I humbled myself, and, guess what? God’s power began to flow, as I got in His order!
God has also shown me that apathy, that spirit of laziness, not caring, and being unfruitful is holding back so many of His people, zapping them of their energy. Apathy is destroyed by involvement. Being ACTIVELY involved with other believers in the work of God will break that yoke of being tired all the time and feeling burned out! See, the devil wants you to be cut off! He wants you to be not fellowshipping, not involved, just a ‘has-been’ and a spectator. But Jesus is ready for you to lay aside those weights, and the sin that so easily besets you, and to get into the race!
This is your time to get up and get going! To get that yoke off your neck and be about your Father’s business! To do what God says and let Him take care of the result! It hasn’t worked your way, and if you keep doing what you’ve been doing you’re going to keep getting what you’ve been getting!