27. August 2017 · Comments Off on BE ENCOURAGED IN THE LORD · Categories: Depression, Jesus Christ, Rejection, Trusting God

And David was greatly distressed; for the people spake of stoning him, because the soul of all the people was grieved, every man for his sons and for his daughters: BUT DAVID ENCOURAGED HIMSELF IN THE LORD HIS GOD (1 Samuel 30:6 KJV).

Beloved, Scripture says… to whom much is given, from him much will be required; and to whom much has been committed, of him they will ask the more (Luke 12:48 NKJV).

This often comes with some great burdens attached to it and there are times when it may seem like you have been abandoned by the people you thought you could rely on. Perhaps, like David in our feature text, all the people that look up to you now turn against you because they no longer have faith in you? They are very distressed but you too are also distressed. Times like that can be overwhelming but it’s not the time to give up. Rather, it’s the time to turn to the Lord.

David had just been sent back home, rejected from going to battle with the Philistines, only to find out that they had been raided. Their town was burned to the ground, and their wives and children taken as prisoners. David and his men wept until they were exhausted. Out of frustration, his men turned on him. It’s your fault David. They were about to stone him to death. Maybe it would make them feel better. But David didn’t say his last prayer. NO. He turned to God.

The Amplified Bible says …DAVID ENCOURAGED AND STRENGTHENED HIMSELF IN THE LORD HIS GOD. He must have remembered all the promises God had made to him and knowing that they still had to be fulfilled, he determined in his heart that this can’t be the end. He asked God for strength, reaffirmation and direction.

Beloved, David prayed to God, “Shall I go after these raiders? Can I catch them?” The answer came, “Go after them! Yes, you’ll catch them! Yes, you’ll make the rescue!” (1 Samuel 30:7-8 MSG)

David found renewed strength. He went after that devil… David pounced. He fought them from before sunrise until evening of the next day. None got away except for four hundred of the younger men who escaped by riding off on camels. David rescued everything the Amalekites had taken. And he rescued his two wives! Nothing and no one was missing—young or old, son or daughter, plunder or whatever. David recovered the whole lot. He herded the sheep and cattle before them, and they all shouted, “David’s plunder!” (1 Samuel 30:17-20 MSG)

Beloved, that’s how the story ends. Had David given up, he would have lost everything… What then shall we say to these things? If God is for us, who can be against us? (Romans 8:31 NKJV). Don’t think of quitting. Find strength in the Lord. Blank out everything and turn to His word. He will tell you how ‘He will never leave nor forsake you’. He will tell you that ‘you are more than a conqueror’. He will show you the way out. He will surely tell you about the victory that is ahead of you.

God bless you in Jesus Christ name
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26. August 2017 · Comments Off on WHAT ARE YOU DOING HERE? · Categories: Depression, God's Plan, Jesus Christ, Trusting God

There he came to a cave, where he spent the night. But the Lord said to him, “What are you doing here, Elijah?” (1 Kings 19:9 NLT)

Beloved, are you in a position where to everyone else it looks like things are going great? Everyone sees your great achievements. They look up to you as a great inspiration but as for you, you are just as confused, disappointed or afraid as ever.

Well, that’s because after every great achievement, you are probably worn or burnt out and that’s when the devil comes after you like a roaring lion, looking for someone to devour. That’s when he starts feeding you with all sorts of lies and threats.

We know of the great Prophet Elijah who had just finished one of the greatest achievements of his life. He called down fire from heaven to consume a very, very wet sacrifice and then killed 450 prophets of Baal all in one day, only to find himself asking God to end his life the next minute.

I remember attending an event only to get there to find the host overburdened, overwhelmed and in tears. This was before people started turning up for the event but when the time came for the event to start, they went on as normal with tears hidden under all that makeup. Nobody had a clue. God did what He wanted to do and we all went home. But then after the event, I called the host and the tears continued for about an hour. She was in deep anguish. “I wish it could all end”, she cried out.

Beloved, unfortunately, I have noticed that some of the people that encourage people are one of the loneliest and discouraged people you can find and just like someone said; people leave encouraged while you leave discouraged because you’ve poured out all your courage into them and now you are just empty and you just want to give up”.

It is to all these people that the Lord is asking this question… “What are you doing here? Why are you so discouraged? Why are so depressed? Why do you feel like giving up?” The enemy has been feeding you lies. You are not alone on this journey… I have left me seven thousand in Israel, all the knees which have not bowed unto Baal, and every mouth which hath not kissed him (1 Kings 19:18 KJV).

Beloved, this burden has been on my heart for a few days now. Don’t be an easy prey for the enemy… Stay alert! Watch out for your great enemy, the devil. He prowls around like a roaring lion, looking for someone to devour. Stand firm against him, and be strong in your faith. Remember that your family of believers all over the world is going through the same kind of suffering you are. In His kindness God called you to share in His eternal glory by means of Christ Jesus. So after you have suffered a little while, He will restore, support, and strengthen you, and He will place you on a firm foundation (1 Peter 5:8-10 NLT).

God bless you in Jesus Christ name
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12. August 2017 · Comments Off on DON’T GET OVERWHELMED BY THE SITUATION · Categories: Decision making, Depression, Faith, Fear, Jesus Christ, Trusting God, Vision, Wisdom

[looking away from all that will distract us and] focusing our eyes on Jesus, who is the Author and Perfecter of faith [the first incentive for our belief and the One who brings our faith to maturity], who for the joy [of accomplishing the goal] set before Him endured the cross, disregarding the shame, and sat down at the right hand of the throne of God [revealing His deity, His authority, and the completion of His work] (Hebrews 12:2 AMP).

Beloved, there’s a song by Jenn Johnson titled ‘God I Look to You’ that has been in my spirit for days now with lyrics that say… God I look to You, I won’t be overwhelmed… Give me vision to see things like You do… God I look to You, You’re where my help comes from… Give me wisdom; You know just what to do.

One definition of overwhelmed is to bury or drown beneath a huge mass of something. Another definition is to defeat someone or something by using a lot of force. Beloved, that’s what the enemy is up to. He is trying to defeat you by bringing things that would overwhelm you and that’s why like our feature text says, we are to look away from all that will distract us and to focus our eyes on Jesus, who is the Author and Perfecter of our faith.

This is similar to what happened to Peter as he stepped out of the boat to walk on water. Satan sent a huge storm to overwhelm him causing him to take his eyes off Jesus and as he succeeded in doing that, he started to drown him.

Beloved, the devil tries to overwhelm with situations all coming at you at the same time. He also releases a lot of doubt, anxiety, depression, fear, confusion etc just to cloud your judgment but like the song says, this is the time to say… God I look to You, I won’t be overwhelmed… Give me vision to see things like You do… God I look to You, You’re where my help comes from… Give me wisdom; You know just what to do

You need to ask the Lord for vision to help you see things the way He sees things. But not just vision, you need to also ask for wisdom. The Bible says… If any of you lacks wisdom [to guide him through a decision or circumstance], he is to ask of [our benevolent] God, who gives to everyone generously and without rebuke or blame, and it will be given to him. But he must ask [for wisdom] in faith, without doubting [God’s willingness to help], for the one who doubts is like a billowing surge of the sea that is blown about and tossed by the wind (James 1:5-6 AMP).

Beloved, the psalmist also says… I look up to the mountains— does my help come from there? My help comes from the Lord, who made heaven and earth! He will not let you stumble; the one who watches over you will not slumber (Psalm 121:1-3 NLT).

God bless you in Jesus Christ name
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05. May 2017 · Comments Off on DON’T GET STUCK WHERE YOU ARE · Categories: Action, Choices, Courage, Decision making, Depression, Jesus Christ, Trusting God

David was greatly distressed, for the men spoke of stoning him because the souls of them all were bitterly grieved, each man for his sons and daughters. But David ENCOURAGED AND STRENGTHENED HIMSELF in the Lord his God (1 Samuel 30:6 AMPC).

Beloved, I remember listening to someone say that to encourage yourself in the Lord is a very good thing until you get stuck. Of course, we all need encouragement from time to time. There are times in life when bad things happen and we do need God’s encouragement, but the danger is when we can’t move on from there. It’s just like when people get addicted to painkillers after taking them for a while. The pain is no longer there, but they can’t stop taking them.

“Stop listening to the same encouraging message over and over again”, they said. Well, I totally got what they were trying to say because I’ve found that I’ve gone off some of the preachers I used to listen to when I was at a very low point in my life. For instance, I remember the very first email devotional I received when my brother died said something along the lines of “there are some things that happen to you that you just have to file in the ‘I cannot understand it folder of your head’”. I don’t need to tell you that I started listening to every sermon they preached and God used their message of hope to minister to me greatly. The Lord is great like that, but I believe a time comes when He wants you to move on and not stay low.

We are told that after encouraging himself… David inquired of the Lord, saying, Shall I pursue this troop? Shall I overtake them? The Lord answered him, Pursue, for you shall surely overtake them and without fail recover all. SO DAVID WENT… (1 Samuel 30:8-9 AMPC)

Beloved, the Lord gave the go ahead and SO DAVID WENT… He moved on. He took action and as a result… David recovered all that the Amalekites had taken and rescued his two wives. Nothing was missing, small or great, sons or daughters, spoil or anything that had been taken; David recovered all (1 Samuel 30:18-19 AMP).

Can you imagine if David remained stuck at the stage in his life when he needed encouragement? Everybody had turned on him so who knows; probably he would have started to play the victim and before you know it, depression would have set in. Only God knows what would have happened to his wife and children then.

Beloved, there is a time for everything, and a season for every activity under the heavens (Ecclesiastes 3:1 NIV). DON’T GET STUCK WHERE YOU ARE. People’s lives and future may depend on your next move.

I say to you, get up, pick up your mat and go… (Mark 2:11 AMP)

God bless you in Jesus Christ name
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05. August 2016 · Comments Off on OVERCOMING THE SPIRIT OF HEAVINESS · Categories: Deliverance, Depression, Jesus Christ, Joy, Praise, Restoration

“The Spirit of the Lord God is upon Me, Because the Lord has anointed Me To preach good tidings to the poor; He has sent Me to heal the brokenhearted, To proclaim liberty to the captives, And the opening of the prison to those who are bound; To proclaim the acceptable year of the Lord, And the day of vengeance of our God; To comfort all who mourn, 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… (Isaiah 61:1-3 NKJV)

Beloved, have you ever been in a situation where one minute you’re happy but the next minute you’re down? It’s almost like all of a sudden, you can feel a heavy weight of despair come over you and you really can’t understand how or why you got there.

Yesterday, I received a message from someone saying they woke up with a heavy heart wondering what exactly was going on in their life. Interestingly, their countenance was different when we spoke a few days before but that’s the spirit of heaviness our feature text is talking about. The NIV says it’s… a spirit of despair while the Expanded Bible says its… the spirit of sadness [discouragement; heavy heart].

The first thing to notice here is that this is not a ‘feeling’ but a spirit sent by the enemy to cause sadness, discouragement, despair, depression etc. How else can a man like the great prophet Elijah be full of great accomplishments one minute and then the next minute you hear him saying… “I have had enough, Lord,” … “Take my life; I am no better than my ancestors.” (1 Kings 19:4 NIV). The enemy had sent fear and intimidation his way that he immediately became so depressed.

How do you overcome it? It’s there in the text… putting on the garment of praise… You need to create an atmosphere of praise and be deliberate about your thinking… whatever is true, whatever is worthy of reverence and is honorable and seemly, whatever is just, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely and lovable, whatever is kind and winsome and gracious, if there is any virtue and excellence, if there is anything worthy of praise, think on and weigh and take account of these things [FIX YOUR MINDS ON THEM] (Philippians 4:8 AMP).

Also… we use God’s mighty weapons, not worldly weapons, to knock down the strongholds of human reasoning and to destroy false arguments. We destroy every proud obstacle that keeps people from knowing God. We capture their rebellious thoughts and teach them to obey Christ (2 Corinthians 10:4-5 NLT).

This involves breaking every stronghold of human reasoning that’s not in line with Gods word. You do this by meditating on what the Lord says to be true about you and not what the enemy is feeding your mind with. Why not begin to cast out any spirit of heaviness? The Spirit of the Lord God is upon you and He brings good news.

God bless you in Jesus Christ name
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