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But those who wait on the LORD Shall renew their strength; They shall mount up with wings like eagles,   They shall run and not be weary, They shall walk and not faint. (Isaiah 40:31  NKJ)

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The “Death Grip”

Let go of that

“Death Grip”!


     When we try to fix something ourselves or change ourselves, things just get muddy and we can't sort anything out or see any solution.  Since we're still trying to do it in the flesh, the enemy can sneak in that open door and create a ton of confusion, making things even MORE complicated, messy or hopeless.  With the focus on ourselves, we may apologize to get others off our back, but the guilt lingers and shame is not resolved either so all we may do is defend ourselves without true repentance.  We may even secretly blame others for “making us feel this way”.


    When we repent, when we “turn” and give this to the Lord and surrender our hold on it, HIS wisdom and HIS power comes in then, to do whatever is necessary, to make changes in you, to give you strength not to pick it up again, to give you wisdom to be watchful for the next time it wants to slide into our life. The power released and received by you, will enable you to once again surrender it back to the Lord before it overtakes you again.  


    If you've tried to stop that addiction, the sin, the bad habit, and find yourself picking it up again, then know that as you pour out before God and sincerely accept His forgiveness, He WILL give you the strength to change.  God will take away your “iniquities” once you lay them down at His feet.  He will bring you into a season of “refreshing” and give you total VICTORY over anything that you turn over to Him.  


IS HE NOT A GOD OF POWER?!  

You just have to COME to the cross.  Jesus will give you strength to stay there.  HE will hold you up...if you come and surrender.



"Repent therefore, and turn again, that your sins may be blotted out, so that there may come times of refreshing from the presence of the Lord, (Acts 3:19)  


This all depends on you, of course, for He is not going to rip anything out of your tight “grip” that you have on things that are not of Him.  You have to offer it up.


Expect attacks!


     When you obey God, when you kick the enemy out of his “encampment” and take back ground that you gave him by coming “into agreement” with Him in sin, he's not going to be happy about it so expect an attack.  This usually happens in the very arena that you are trying to gain victory in.   The enemy of your soul certainly will not let you go without a fight:  


The unclean spirit, when he has gone out of the man, passes through dry places, seeking rest, and finding none, he says, 'I will turn back to my house from which I came out.' When he returns, he finds it swept and put in order. Then he goes, and takes seven other spirits more evil than himself, and they enter in and dwell there. The last state of that man becomes worse than the first. (Luke 11:24-26)   


Do not be afraid!  Greater is He who is in you than who is in the world and the enemy is already defeated at the cross!  He has no power over you (other than what you give him). turn fast, hold fast to the Lord Jesus, claim victory and use that power available to you and the enemy MUST FLEE!


 You are of God, little children, and have overcome them; because greater is he who is in you than he who is in the world.  (1 John 4:4)  


Be subject therefore to God. But resist the devil, and he will flee from you.  (James 4:7)  


This may seem very hard at times so we need to ask God to give us a change of heart.  You may need supernatural healing in all aspects; from strength to turning from temptation, to blocking memories of the past and desires, to taking away “triggers” to sin (those life stresses that makes you want to run to an “addiction”, “pacifier”, “stress buster”, whatever you want to go to for comfort that is NOT Jesus.

Father God, thank you for listening to me whenever I come to you.  Your love is so great for me that I cannot comprehends it's abundance.  Help me to know you deeper this day.  Put a revelation of your grace, mercy and love for me deeper in my heart.  Give me strength to cling to your side and to turn to your word on all occasions.

1.Step 1:
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What does that look like?

       In Mark 10:46-52, Bartimaeus sought healing from Jesus.  When he heard that Jesus was passing by, he cried out.  Others tried to shut him up but he only cried louder, not caring what anyone would say or what they thought of him, he didn't allow anything to stand in his way.  Would we be so bold?  Would YOU cry out, yelling out in front of others to get His attention?  Bartimaeus had pushed his pride aside and then Jesus told him that he was healed “because of His faith”.

And consider Job's response to God's revelation of himself: “My ears had heard of you but now my eyes have seen you.  Therefor I despise myself and repent in dust and asks.” (Job 42:5-6)   

     I also love Isaiah's exclamation of the vision of God's holiness: “Woe to me!' I cried. 'I am ruined!  For I am a man of unclean lips, and I live among a people of unclean lips, and my eyes have sen the King, the LORD Almighty” (Isaiah 6:5)  Job and Isaiah are highly respected men in their communities and look at how they react when shown God's holiness.

This is what the Sovereign LORD, the Holy One of Israel, says: "In repentance and rest is your salvation, in quietness and trust is your strength, but you would have none of it.  Isaiah 30:15
Produce fruit in keeping with repentance  Matthew 3:8
Other Scriptures: . Acts 26:20,  Acts 20:21,  Romans 2:4,  2 Corinthians 7:9,  Hebrews 6:1

Build your “Camp”.

     Confess your sins to one other ( James 5:16) and getting a support team around you to KEEP you to the throne is a good piece of advice (read “Building Your Camp”).  Confiding in another brother or sister in the Lord may seem embarrassment but remember, no one is without sin, so you may be surprised how much others can identify with yours.  Scripture tells us to DO this so that we may be HEALED! .

     Don't kid yourself that you can do this alone. If you could have... you WOULD HAVE, so submit and find support that will hold you to the throne. Ask the Lord where a “safe place” is to confide in and ask Him for others who love Him to surround you and encourage you, who will stay up with you but remember, even Jesus had a hard time finding some who would stay up with him and not fall asleep when he went into prayer at Gethsemane.  Our focus cannot be on man but on Jesus.   


Blessings will come.

The truth in this is that wherever you think you might see a void, you will be filled to overflowing because of the sacrifice you made.  He will bless whatever you feel is lacking, and to an extent that is beyond your imagination.  As you bring your thoughts, actions and attitudes into alignment with the Lord: impure thoughts; evil desires; and sinful actions,  bad memories will fade and you will be made “from glory to glory” into the likeness of Jesus Christ.  

Just like the Corinthians, you heart will desire purity, the eagerness to stop sinning, indignation and alarm at the seriousness of sin, a longing to be right with God, concern and readiness to do whatever is necessary to guard your mind, and  hunger to walk closely with your God.

For the kingdom of God does not consist in talk but in power.  (1 Corinthians 4:20)  

     Remember that the Kingdom is about power, not talk.  How much power do you want in a situation?  A True Repentance is acknowledging the position, power, headship, and authority that God has in your life.  How hungry are you?  We have to fall on our knees and get this resolved before we not only loose loved ones, jobs, integrity, health, but our very life.  Your life DOES depend on it.  Claim total freedom in Christ Jesus TODAY! Our Lord is quick to forgive and wants nothing in the way that would come between you and Him.  He holds the broken and contrite heart so run to Him now.
     So let's get this issue taken care of NOW!  Below is a prayer to help lead you into this direction.  Below that is more scripture truths to apply to this area.  Meditate on them daily, call them out when tempted and STAND.  Be encouraged in Christ Jesus.
When tempted....

 Finally, brothers, whatever things are true, whatever things are honorable, whatever things are just, whatever things are pure, whatever things are lovely, whatever things are of good report; if there is any virtue, and if there is any praise, think about these things.  (Philippians 4:8)

 Bind up every evil thought and temptation in the name of Jesus Christ, claim that you are a child of God, call all the blood of Jesus over it.  Force your thoughts to think of good things, on holy things, purity and all that is noble.  Remember the people who you ARE fighting for, aside from yourself, think of those who love you most and who is hurt by your actions. DO whatever it takes to stay at the throne, stay there until you receive “the blessing”.

Switch & Bait

    The enemy throws out there these beautiful lures, doesn't he?  The enemy has many tactics And they look like they come at little cost, to bring pleasure in one form
or another, but the truth is, something bigger is at stake when we fall for them. There is always a bigger cost and the enemy loves it when we fall for his cheap imitations of the real thing.  


     Eve fell for such a tactic.  She thought God was “holding out on her” (The “Eve Complex”) and she didn't trust His provision.  The cost was great and all she wanted was what she thought she deserved.  And Where was Adam?  He was right there but did he say; “NO!  Eve! Don't!”?
  
There are many reasons why we fall for the enemy's lures but one thing that I find extremely encouraging is that if I repent of my rebellion, in thinking like Eve did; that God is holding out on me and causing me to do without, or in thinking that I 'deserve” what God isn't placing on my plate at the moment, I find it encouraging to remember that God holds many blessings out to me, even more than I could possibly imagine, and that He never asks me to give something up without promising abundance.  

Again, there is that “self” thing going on.  Instead of thinking God has something for us, that the sacrifice He is asking is of benefit to us, we look at the sacrifice and feel sorry for ourselves, thinking of all we would do without.  Don't fall for cheap tactics of the enemy as there is another deal “just around the corner”...
 


 “I'm sorry”, he said, head down in a position of shame.  It held no weight for me, as I've heard this for the umpteenth time. He had been meeting with our pastor weekly for over a year now and STILL sat there, hanging his head so low that I thought it would fall off!

 “He doesn't have deliverance!” I told the associate pastor when I met with him the next day, “He still just sits there, nothing changed, still covered in guild and shame, unable to stop his addiction and downloading just as many porn movies as ever!”  I wanted to know exactly WHAT they were doing with him for the last 12 months of meeting weekly.

    “I KNOW that with Jesus there is TOTAL FREEDOM...so why isn't he getting it?”  I dug a little deeper.  The pastor just looked at me with the eyes of...what was it?  Defeat?  I knew he didn't have the answers...and I didn't understand why.  All I knew is that each time my husband “failed”, which was continually, I was the one who “felt bad”, not only from the defilement he brought into our bedroom/relationship,  but I felt guilty for “making him face his demons”, so to speak.  I was tired of feeling bad or guilty, and felt that if he was really sorry, why should I be the one to feel this bad?!  If he was REALLY SORRY...WHY did this addiction continue...and continue...and continue?!

One brings salvation... the other brings death.

     When we first brought this issue before the church, the pastor had wagged his finger in my face and told me that I had “no business even LOOKING at my husband's sin!”  I was so devastated that it took me about a year to realize that maybe he didn't have the answers ...maybe HE had a similar issue...as I had heard this was common in the church. I tried approaching the pastor on this issue one more time.

     I told him that I noticed that whenever he counseled with us, he never went into prayer, never took my husband to the throne, and never walked my husband through repentance ...NOR through receiving forgiveness. “THAT is where the power is”, I said, “and if he cannot receive forgiveness” I continued, “then there is no power to change, no power released into his life”.

Godly sorrow brings repentance that leads to salvation and leaves no regret, but worldly sorrow brings death.  2 Corinthians 7:10


The “Death Grip”:
        Worldly Sorrow vs Godly Sorrow:

Worldly Sorrow is being sorry you were caught.  
Wordily Sorrow is being sorry the divine spotlight is exposing your sin and making you feel bad.  
Worldly Sorrow is self pity, or sorrow that you can't have you sin and heaven too.  Wordily Sorrow is totally focused on self, and self-pity.
Wordily Sorrow leads to DEATH.

Godly Sorrow is a “heart sorrow” concerning SIN itself.
Godly sorrow produces a deep shame, a sense of guilt, at having grieved the very heart of God.
Godly Sorrow produces a humble contrition.
Godly sorrow is focused on God and how wicked and contemptible we are in the face of His unsurpassed holiness and goodness.
Godly Sorrow brings BROKENNESS
Godly sorrow is a total change of viewpoint.  Instead of measuring ourselves against other men, we see ourselves in a measure as God sees us – and we're heartbroken.
Godly Sorrow leads to LIFE.

God's Holiness destroys Self-righteous Pride

     Feeling sorry for yourself is STILL “self”.  The “accuser of the brethren”, Satan,  would have a heyday if he could KEEP you in that state, leading you into bondage: a jail cell of  guilt and shame.  Defending yourself and giving excuses, is just another way of trying to 'justify' your behavior, which is not BROKENNESS.

   A true revelation of God's Holiness is that self-righteousness is destroyed.  You may know with shocking clarity that if you are to find favor with God, it will be because God chooses to act in grace and mercy towards you, not because there is anything in you that deserves favor.  PRIDE – the wicked and deceptive product of sin – must be utterly destroyed (read “The Magic Key” to learn how to resolve Hidden Pride: “Focus on Self”) There will be no boasting on the day of judgment.  The redeemed will fall on their faces, amazed at God's goodness and mercy.   

I now rejoice, not that you were made sorry, but that you were made sorry to repentance. For you were made sorry in a godly way, that you might suffer loss by us in nothing. For godly sorrow works repentance to salvation, which brings no regret. But the sorrow of the world works death. For behold, this same thing, that you were made sorry in a godly way, what earnest care it worked in you. Yes, what defense, indignation, fear, longing, zeal, and vengeance! In everything you demonstrated yourselves to be pure in the matter.  (2 Corinthians 7:9-11)
Those who oppose him he must gently instruct, in the hope that God will grant them repentance leading them to a knowledge of the truth,  2 Timothy 2:25

Repent so that you can see truth.
  
    The purpose of conviction is not to leave us wallowing in the mire of hopeless self-pity but it's designed to produce in the heart a genuine willingness to turn from sin, a deep heart cry for deliverance from both sin and self.  It's one thing to see what we are and it's another t o cry out to be changed. That's what God wants, and He alone has the power to bring that change about.
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