Posts Tagged ‘ignore’

The Garment of Praise

“The Spirit of the Lord GOD is upon me; because the LORD has anointed me to preach good tidings unto the meek; He has sent me to bind up the brokenhearted, to proclaim liberty to the captives, and the opening of the prison to them that are bound; To proclaim the acceptable year of the LORD, and the day of vengeance of our God; to comfort all that mourn;  To appoint unto them that mourn in Zion, to give unto them beauty for ashes, the oil of joy for mourning, the garment of praise for the spirit of heaviness; that they might be called trees of righteousness, the planting of the LORD, that He might be glorified.” (Isaiah 61:1-3)

The answer against a “spirit of heaviness” is to put on the ”garment of praise.”

Satan hates praise:

Praise exalts Jesus no matter what the circumstances may look like. It engages our trust in God and activates our faith like nothing else can do. You see, praise introduces light and supernatural life into our circumstances. It is the ultimate release of spiritual freedom. Just listen to the following verses and let something click inside.

(2 Cor 3:17) “The Lord is the Spirit, and where the Spirit of the Lord is, there is freedom.”

(Gal 5:1) ” Stand fast therefore in the liberty by which Christ has made us free, and do not be entangled again with a yoke of bondage.”

(Jn 8:36) ” Therefore if the Son makes you free, you shall be free indeed.”

Praise is Agreement with God!

Praising the Lord and agreement with the truth of God’s Word, renews the mind and lifts the spirit of heaviness off your shoulders. Notice the Prophet Isaiah says that your life is designed to reflect your calling as “trees of righteousness”. Its your destiny to become the “planting of the Lord”. As you praise Him daily, you will release the stature of Christ within you… “that He may be glorified”, seen and celebrated as your Deliverer! Nothing so clearly displays the power of God like our freedom in the spirit.

The Effect of a Spirit of Heaviness:

It darkens our countenance. Our hearts are down cast. This spirit brings a “heaviness” over us and dims our vision, robs our hope and crushes our sense of purpose. There are testimonies I’ve heard from people who say “when this spirit comes it even makes the room feel darker”. It brings a heavy and oppressive atmosphere that restricts and quenches our perception. It may come like a cloud hanging over you or your location, but the most difficult part to deal with is that it causes isolation. The devil’s goal is to remove you from the atmosphere of love and approval. Think about it, if Satan can get you isolated, then he can break your spirit and remove your source of inspiration and hope.

Recognize it:

This is the first step. You are a Child of God! This is not God’s will for you!  “What shall we then say to these things? If God be for us, who can be against us?” (Rom 8:31) Don’t believe the lies… Praise God instead! Accept no criticism and carry no extra baggage. You must learn the art of selective hearing, so that you choose the things you ignore and the things that come from the Throne of Heaven. We destroy arguments and pull down strongholds, so that every thought is made captive to the obedience of Christ (2 Cor 10:5). That means I am actively discerning where my thoughts are coming from and believe me… I can rule over them with praise!

Put on the Garment of Praise!

This literally means to be “wrapped up in praise”. God has given it to be worn and provide insulation. So put it on like a jacket every single day. Take a few moments each morning and every time there is a battle raging, to put it on like armor on a soldier. You will watch your enemy run for cover with his tail between his legs… like a whipped puppy. That’s right, praise is your most effective tool in magnifying God and shrinking the influence of the devil. Get loud, get aggressive and set your heart on spiritual freedom!

It is the anointing that breaks the yoke! (Isa 10:27)

A Pure Mind

“Let this mind be in you which was also in Christ Jesus.” (Phil 2:5)

The greatest area of sin in the believer’s life is not usually in the area of actions, but in the arena of the thoughts. Pride, for example, is a sin of the mind… and so is lust and suspicion and discouragement. These are all sins of the mind. But the good news is that we do not have to think on or dwell on every thought that comes to our minds. We can ignore them, refuse them access to our heart and even crush their influence by speaking the Truth of God’s Word over ourselves.

The Battle Within:

Because we all contend with the devil, we have trouble with undesirable thoughts popping into our heads. These thoughts can be suttle, confusing and sometimes even oppressive and difficult to battle. Most of us would not want our thoughts made public, because it would be embarrassing. But we must be aware that they are not really an accurate barometer of our spiritual condition.

Jesus dealt with the devil’s temptations with the words, “It is written” (Mt. 4:4) and that is exactly what we must do. It is not so much what a person thinks; but what he delights in, that tells more accurately what he is and where he stands spiritually. While we cannot completely get rid of this battle here on earth, we can keep it from controlling us.

Tending the Garden:

The mind is like a garden which can grow beauty or it can grow ugliness. It can produce flowers or it can bring forth weeds. It must be tended with care and diligence. It must be disciplined after the patterns of the Bible (2 Cor. 10:3-6). We must cultivate spiritual thinking and the Scriptures give a list of worthy objects that we ought to be thinking about.

Philippians 4:8

“Whatever things are true” – whatever is based on truth, earned or received by methods that are honest and not by cheating and falsehood. For most of us, it is not the big things that test our honesty. We will likely never embezzle ten thousand dollars from an employer, but we might need to be careful about dimes and quarters at the check-out isle. Every Christian needs to think in terms of the “golden rule”, treating others how they would like to be treated (Mt. 7:12).

“Whatever things are just” - things that are right and impartial. It is right to give a customer full measure when selling merchandise in business. It is right to play fair in all that we do. Parents must diligently to show no partiality with their children. We should never plan in our thoughts to manipulate or deceive.

“Whatever things are pure” – free from anything that is tainted. Purity speaks especially about chastity in the realm sexual relationships. Our society is full of sexual images and tries to overwhelm our minds with all kinds of distorted realities. Unclean thinking is stimulated by these images, obscene jokes and stories. For this reason, the follower of Christ must consider carefully the movies they attend, censors reading material and needs to avoid participating in activities that are not noble and pure.

“Whatever things are lovely” – things that are beautiful, innocent and pleasing. “Lovely things” are the opposite of the ugly and bizarre. The Christian should cultivate the traits of courtesy and pleasantness. We should avoid the sharp answer, harsh reply and sarcastic remarks. It is sad to see a husband who cannot answer his wife in gentle tones. Honor is a powerful character trait that is cultivated by a mind that dwells on things that are “lovely.”

“Whatever things are of good report” – things spoken in a gracious spirit; things spoken with good will toward others; things which are the opposite of gossip and the spreading of rumors. Courtesy to others, respect for parents, loyalty between husband and wife… these are always things “of good report.”

“Any virtue and anything praiseworthy” – meditate on these things!

The word “think” or “meditate” means “to dwell upon” or “to focus attention upon” - So think on things that are virtuous and worthy of praise!

Qualities such as kindness, loyalty and honor; are qualities we should think about and dwell upon daily. Spirit-controlled thinking can lift our thoughts and bless the lives of everyone we come into contact with. Scripture consistently suggests the way to conquer evil thinking is to submit to God, resist the devil and think upon good things (Jms. 4:7-10), because in so doing we will give no place to wickedness. The greatest way to keep evil thoughts at bay is to embrace the mind of Christ (1 Cor. 2:16). 

Spiritual thinking is a call to think upon good things and eat the fruit of a bountiful garden… a pure mind.

Archives