The Valley of Deliverance

The anointing God gives is powerfully useful to advance His kingdom. It becomes however, a matter of vision and focus to properly use what God gives. I think of men like Samson who with the strength God gave, delivered a nation, until he became focused on his own pleasure and his strength failed. When men choose to look away from God, their faith becomes paralyzed by fear. In the book of Samuel, David stands as a picture of faith and focus. He becomes God’s tool to set the record straight for us there in a valley between two mountains of influence. David stands against that Goliath in your life that has continued to degrade your faith and usefulness to God’s kingdom. Have you misused your freedom in Christ because you were looking the other way? Your wayward look has brought you under a yoke of fear and bondage keeping you from advancing where God would have you go. No war was ever won with decisive victory by talking the enemy to death. No sir, victory will requires decisive action. It’s the obedience factor to the word which we hear. God wants to use us, but not until fear is gone and the enemy is silenced. In some real sense our Christianity has become too much a product of our culture. Our reality based TV shows have influenced ‘real life‘ for too many believers. It’s like everyone is in the same pot of water and it is beginning to boil watching the same images that promote real-life moral decay in a society that says they are ok with everything while standing for nothing. Everyone is drinking out of the same bottle and it has made them drunk with the wine of immorality; time is past for passivity and not speaking up. It is time for God’s people to act and to move with Him. Where the enemy taunts, God calls to action. The questions are these: Will you be caught looking with the masses the other way, or will you recognize the anointing God has bestowed on you? Will you move with God to behold the situation that lies before you with the eyes of faith and focus? Will you expose the enemy’s lies to you–about you–sent to defeat God‘s purpose in you–so that you fail to possess that inheritance He’s given you? I believe God wants to bring you to a valley; it is a valley of decision, it’s a valley of deliverance. The valley is to address your passivity and blindness. In 1 Samuel 17, David represents here a type of Christ, sent to deliver a nation because he was not afraid to enter the fray. Unafraid to move forward there in the valley of decision–in the valley where forces collide. There is a valley in your life of two opposing forces, one of God and the other contrary to His will and His way. In that valley there is a very real enemy who taunts and scoffs at the things of God and at those who find themselves on His side, however timid they might be. He calls out to you; He taunts in this very hour. The word says, ‘Goliath, the champion came out to Israel and taunted God’s army’. Goliath, the word says was over nine feet tall. He was big, just not as big as the lie he and everyone else had believed, but David would not be part of that culture of fear. He had come from outside that culture–from the sheepfolds and a place where he had witnessed God’s ability to deliver from death. You see the enemy is a champion of fear; he champions fear by telling lies that he will prevail and not you. He looks to cast aspersions on your character and ability by telling you, ‘you’re not mature enough, not big or strong enough’. All of those things being what they are, still he underestimates the greatness of your God when you stand in the window of opportunity and say what God says. The word says, David ‘ran quickly to the battle line’ and took decisive action because the time for talking had past, and the need for swift action had come. Deliberate action in faith gets God’s attention and His favor, so that you do not act alone. His awesome power will move with you, bringing you to see victory and the prevailing word of God that will bring all those around you under the influence of His word and power. When you move in faith through your Goliath, you create a testimony God then uses to publish His fame in a way like you could never imagine. Your single act of obedience creates a single spark…but driven by a great wind that spreads the power of His name like wildfire. David in his youthful zeal would serve at God’s pleasure to tell a story of timeless influence proving, if but one thing, that God needs little more that your readiness to be His instrument. You see, man has a fame that awards himself, but God rewards and uses those who lay self aside–there on the battle line of His reputation to call forth glory in the face of the foolish. Are you listening to the Enemy’s degrading taunt? How’s it working out for you? Run to the battle line of obedience and sling the truth of God’s word letting it fly with boldness to declare the Greatness of YOUR God who slays the champion of fear.

Beyond the Baggage

Remember the word given to Saul? Namely this, that he would would be changed into another man and would be numbered among the prophets.  There was however with Saul an uncertainty that left him timid and restrained from doing God’s will. With all of us, God seeks to do a new thing, but the timid of spirit can’t see it–its view is clouded by all the baggage.  Get it!  God says ‘you will be endued with mighty power and with the mind to receive what I would do on your behalf; you will be changed by a heart touched by my love and declare My word to men.’ The word says as much in 2 Timothy 1:7 when it says, ‘God has not given us a spirit of fear or timidity but one of power and love and sound judgement.’ Samuel declared of the Lord’s chosen, ‘see there is none like him in all the land’.  The New Testament says we are a chosen race, a royal priesthood and yet we too easily miss His mighty acts because we all too often dwell with the timid and not the humble. Saul’s royal life was haunted by that timid spirit, and he never got rid of the baggage he was hiding behind.  Timidity will keep you in “Yourself” while humility will take you beyond yourself to behold what God will do just because He said so.  Humility will give you a front row seat to God’s glory, but timidity leaves you blocked off with a very realistic view of yourself and no faith to see beyond the strength of your own hand. I recently found myself frustrated and angry because I could not change a particular situation that I was facing.  God revealed my frustration was borne of a timid spirit causing me a place of grief instead of seeing the way of victory. The timid never go past the frustration, but continue with a passive approach that leaves them disappointed and missing the full plan of God. He showed my need to dwell with the broken not the timid. In that moment of anxiety God revealed this: the timid fail to see His move because of many reasons all driven by fear, but the broken humbly take a seat of rest by a window of recovery to behold what God says and moreover what He would do. Saul became King, but failed to possess all God had intended because he was slave to his own thinking. It left him angry and disappointed not full–timid but not broken. And the end of his life was spent still trying to change the situation by His own methods missing God by a half a step. What about you…want to be angry for the way things are turning out? The timid spirit will keep you there–mad but unable to really do anything about it. That is why it is so frustrating because there is really nothing “you” can do there behind all that baggage hiding from God’s favor. God says, ‘why don’t you look to the word that I’ve given to you as sons?’ ‘I have not given you a spirit of fear and slavery, but I give a Spirit of love so your heart becomes mine. I give a Spirit of power–an unction moving your life from uncertainty to possess the things I have said on your behalf, because son, there is to be none like you, so that I might declare my life through yours. I have given you a Spirit of discipline to think with sound judgement so you can work my plan not your own with the unlimited ability of my resources to accomplish the word I will send before you. I offer you today sound judgment enabling you to think like sons not slaves. Today, which will you be?’ He further says, ‘kindle afresh the gift of God by the Spirit I have given to you, which is powerfully appointed to enable you to focus and to act as sons.’

The Word

The Enemy uses the fog of confusion to effectively disrupt the vision and purpose of God. It is important to understand no matter where we are relative to the fog–we will live by our faith. That’s right; it is never by sight anyway.  And when sight is clouded, my hearing becomes of utmost importance.  How is your hearing?  If we know faith comes by hearing the word of God, then God’s word and His voice is the key to our uncertainty.  Your life as a Christian will be defined, refined and ultimately proven by this word that you hear.  You simply will not have faith or even proper obedience unless you hear the word correctly.  Timing is everything and perceived need essential if I am going to find the divine directives the word offers me. Isaiah 55:1; offers us an invitation by saying, “Is anyone thirsty? Come and drink–even if you have no money! Come,…” The word brings an invitation into my life–a portal through which God’s thinking can flow into my darkness giving proper direction from my clouded judgement.  And where my foggy thoughts have left me stranded, this word would be the impetus to move me forward without fear.  This word promises a satisfaction that bread alone cannot.  Jesus said, ‘Man shall not live by bread alone, but by every word that proceeds out of the mouth of God.”  It has the power to strengthen your bones to make you stand up, fill out and fast forward you from dark to light in one single instance.  This word comes to impart the faith like Abraham as God Himself speaks to your own heart, calling you from the fog you’re living in.  It could be a fog of confusion, of doubt, of fear, of failure, of lies and deception so thick that this word could be wasted on you.  But make no mistake, the fog will break down communication of this word unless you recognize the invitation this word is making to you.   You need to see the absolute importance of this word–it’s a powerful thing!  You and I often spend money for things that leave us short and the fog remains, but God desires that we discover a line of communication that leaves us well informed and confident–ready to display His thoughts and a testimony that proves His word will affect my quality of life and living.  I have seen the fog of confusion, and I tell you this word can powerfully remove its effects to give you the will and way to move ahead toward the promise no matter what you see.  His invitation to you stands and His word will remove your fog.  I believe He is saying, ‘timing is everything, so come now, everyone who thirsts, come now…’

The Priority of His Presence

God desires that you overcome today. David gives us the proper focus in Psalm 27:4 when he says, ‘One thing I have asked of the Lord and that I will seek..’ He underscores the high priority of God’s presence staying focused on the place where His glory dwells with us. I believe today God is saying on the basis of His word, you and I need to arrive at that place of decision–a place where we take a stand with the Lord and seek His presence. He says, ‘follow these steps on your way to seeing greater confidence living an overcoming life’. He says, ‘Fear no man; make no room for evil; and ask what you would that I could do for you. I will do mighty things even greater that what you could ask me for.’ Stand today in the fearless abode of a loving Father who desires to publish abroad a miraculous testimony through your life that rescues, heals, and delivers.