I love God's perfect timing. I love how He works even when we don't think He is working or perhaps when we think we have closed off an area of our lives from Him to work in.
I first did Beth Moore's 'Breaking Free' about 11 years ago. Even though I have been a Christian since I was 9 years old, I didn't progress much in my spiritual life until about 5 years ago. Oh, I have the loved the Lord intensely for many, many years, but I just didn't quite grasp the difference between reading the bible and studying God's Word. Between loving Him and having an intimate relationship with Him.
So when I started studying about strongholds and captivity, I really didn't see the cords of the yoke that had me entangled back then. I didn't think I had any strongholds. Well, not of any significance. I looked back over my book from the first study and just couldn't believe how blind I was to some real captivity in my life back then. I definitely had the stronghold of ignorance! Or perhaps it was pride.
One thing I love about growing closer and closer to the Lord is how He reveals more and more of our imperfections as we grow. The deeper our walk with Him, the wider our eyes are opened to the truth of our depravity. With our more intense seeking, comes the freedom from self-delusion. He will reveal His Truth to us so that we can begin to distinguish the Truth of His Word from the lies of satan.
"The LORD is near to all
who call on Him, to all
who call on Him in Truth"
When I began teaching this study earlier this year, it didn't take but one homework session and I was just blown away at the captivity in my life! How in the world could I have been so blind? This statement really hit me square in the eyes and caused me to do some in-depth soul searching.
'A Christian is held captive by anything that hinders the abundant and effective Spirit-filled life God planned for her"
Oh, my.. I was a captive in the worse way. My life was not as abundant and Spirit-filled as Christ had planned for me. Not even close. I started right then by getting an index card out and making a list of the strongholds God was revealing to me. Of course, I wrote 4 of them down but didn't write one more that came to mind because, well, if I didn't write it down it didn't count. Right? Um... no. Wrong. It just meant that it would take God a little longer to deal with me on it and I would stay in bondage just a little bit longer than anticipated. Not a good plan.
We are nearing the end of our study and the other day I pulled out my card and glanced at it and realized that I was indeed, with God's help, breaking free from those things that are binding me and preventing me from experiencing true abundance in the Spirit. Except for the one thing that I failed to write down. Once again, God brought it to the forefront and I knew that it was time to deal with it. And so I did.
With the generous grace dispensed by my Lord, and with His Sovereign Hand leading the way, I was able to take that first step toward freedom in this area. It wasn't easy. It is a work in progress. But oh, it was so good. I felt a weight lifted off of me that was a long time in coming! I felt some freedom in my spirit that I hadn't felt in a while. I took another step in the journey with my Savior and took great pleasure in tearing down some high places in my life.
Each day is a new challenge, but I know that God is faithful. He wants us to quit cooperating with the enemy. He wants us to be free. He desires for us to experience the abundant and effective Spirit-filled life He planned for us. Our liberty in Christ is a reality!
My greatest desire is to bring honor to His Name. I want to be an instrument for His glory. I want to be a display of His Splendor. May He be able to say over me, "My Name and My renown was the desire of her heart."
Thank you, Lord, for helping me to walk in your ways. Thank you for the power of your Word and the presence of your Holy Spirit. Thank you for the freedom that comes from a life lived according to your commandments.