Posts Tagged ‘shoulders’

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)

Real Grace

The word “grace” has significant meaning for our relationship with God, ourselves and one another. Grace is God’s love offered. As a gift is freely given, so grace must be received to be appreciated. God offers us something beyond ourselves, yet within our reach. The power of this gift called grace, grows when we truly understand how it works in connection with faith and trust.

Grace is a Person:

God so loved the world that He gave us the gift of His only Son (Jn 3:16-17). Jesus is the gift of grace to all mankind. He is the way, the truth, and the life of God, given as the full representative of grace. Through Jesus, God comes to us and reveals Himself to us, because we cannot by ourselves find God. Jesus as our advocate with the Father comes to help us know Him and believe in Him as He really is. We cannot do this by our human limitation, because we get so blinded by carnal perception. We need God’s grace.

Religious Perceptions:

Religion can be negative to our perception, as it creates a way of seeing through boxes of morality, judgment and expectations. In fact, so many people are bound to religion that Christianity is often defined more by what it rejects than what it believes.

If we are sinful (and we all are), we may not want to come to God, thinking that God is unapproachable and will punish us for our sins. We may get the idea that we must be “good enough” to be acceptable to God. But this is where grace becomes so significant. Its the gift of God!

Understanding Mercy:

All sinners experience guilt, brokenness and emotional pain. But faith is our humble belief in God’s mercy. Mercy is simply God not giving us what we deserve so that grace can become visible. When we understand mercy, we naturally turn toward the one showing us that mercy. This turning is an act of humility, because we recognize the favor (grace) being shown us is undeserved and it causes us to feel like a burden is lifted from our shoulders. There are all kinds of burdens that mercy lifts when someone favors us.

Clarifying Our Focus:

It is important that we reject sinful behavior, but never reject ourselves or the person we see sinning. Unfortunately, in real life, many of us have the tendency to blend the two into one: we often associate the behavior with the person. In this way, we become condemning and judgmental, hypocritical and proud.

This is where God’s grace becomes visible. Jesus is not a policeman, but an advocate. An advocate is somebody who pleads the case for mercy and stands on behalf of the guilty before the accuser or the judge.

Restoration and Hope:

In the parable of the prodigal son, the father is not judgemental and condemning, but a restorer of broken relationship. Jesus tells us, he throws his arms around the returning son and kisses him, while his servant is commanded to prepare the house for a party.

Consistent with Grace:

Jesus would have us see God as the waiting Father, who runs to embrace the son at the first sign of his turning toward home. “This son was lost, but now has come home! Bring out the robe, the ring and the sandals, for my son was dead and is alive again. Prepare the fatted calf… tonight we feast!” (Lk 15:20-24)

Walking in Real Grace:

The other son is caught up in the epic battle with religious seeing and self-righteous attitudes. Jesus does not approve of that moralistic attitude, because it is hypocritical. In offering grace to others, Jesus wants us to embrace people at the first sign of turning toward home. Its not that we condone what they have done as much as we embrace who they really are. He wants us to know that grace is God’s unconditional love revealed at the first sign of humility. The Apostle Peter said “…be clothed with humility, for God resists the proud and gives grace to the humble” (1 Pet 4:5).

Remnant Reality

The Spirit of God is gathering people from all parts of the global landscape as part of His remnant. Those that have eyes to see and ears to hear are paying attention to what He has to say.

  • God told the Prophet Elijah there were 7,000 just like him that had not kissed the face of Baal and Jezebel (1 Kings 19:18).
  • He gave Gideon 300 faithful, courageous and alert warriors that brought deliverance to a nation (Judges 7:7).
  • David fought with mighty men that helped transition the kingdom out of Saul’s religious control (2 Samuel 3:1).
  • Jesus baptized 120 with Holy Spirit power in the Upper Room and they turned the world upside down (Acts 2:1-4).

The Spirit of God is gathering His remnant, hungry warriors just like you that want to make a difference with their lives. What you feel in your spirit is the awakening of “Sonship” (Rom 8:18-19). Father is calling His Sons and His Daughters to arise with a glistening reflection of His countenance upon their faces (Isa 60:1-2).

The Deeper Mandate: 

Its a significant reality that pulls from deep places of the heart, more impacting than most passing spiritual hungers. Those hungers you feed with common Bible Studies and fellowship groups, but this is more of a  mandate. A demand is being made upon our sense of passion and purpose. Its as if God is asking for more from us today than in times past and the anointing upon our lives must increase as well.

A New Fabric:

This remnant is a “new fabric” formed through intercession (Heb 7:25) and ripped from the cloth of a priestly garment. God seems to be calling for His five-fold ministers to align and engage for strategic assignments. The good news is that you are not alone, if you feel the tugging upon your heart. There are thousands just like you that God has preserved in wilderness places. They are spiritual reformers and revolutionaries of righteousness. They are the revivalists that have been waiting in the trenches of institutional structures holding on to the power of God, in the face of opposition.

Shaking Reveals a Governing Strength! 

In a world where everything that can be shaken is now shaking, the One True Government of God is beginning to arise. Its the government of the heart, that is awakened by the Voice of our True Shepherd. Its that anointed government found only on the shoulders of the One called “Wonderful, Counselor, Mighty God, Everlasting Father and Prince of Peace” (Isa 9:6-7), yet it is advanced among a Kingdom People filled with the Knowledge of the Glory of His Presence (Hab 2:14). Scripture declares that the gates of hell shall not prevail against this Church (Mt 16:18), for its the habitation of God by His Spirit (Eph 2:22). It’s exciting to know that you were born for such a time as this, a time when the enemy’s entrance has raised the standard of Zion’s determination (Isa 59:19).

The Zeal of Zion, God’s Remnant:

The Holy Spirit is saying “Only the Sons of God, walking in the Holy Spirit can manifest the Kingdom” (Isa 52:6). As the shaking continues, the Remnant Church will arise out of obscurity and again walk in His Spirit manifesting signs, wonders and miracles, confirming once again that Jesus is the Christ, raised from the dead and Lord of all the Earth.

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