24 November 2012

The Great Escape

When I was in the sixth grade, I would play football after school with several other guys in the neighborhood.  These were the days of Roger Staubach, Tony Dorsett, and the Cowboys were still America’s team.  Everyone in the world, as far as we knew, was in love with the sport, and we were no different. We played football almost every day after school regardless of the weather. But, more than the football, what I remember most was Scott’s dad Gary.  When Gary would get home from work each evening he would watch us as we played. After he was able to determine which team was losing, he would join that team.  We were always excited when his dad would show up because it was always a game changer for the team he joined.

2 Cor 10:3-4 “For though we live in the world, we do not wage war as the world does. The weapons we fight with are not the weapons of the world. On the contrary, they have divine power to demolish strongholds.”

The word ‘stronghold’ comes from the Greek word ‘ochur├┤ma’ which literally means “a prisoner locked by deception.” Too many men that I know are prisoners of a lie.

Do you have strongholds in your life?  An area where your mind is locked onto the wrong thing? Strongholds you could be facing may include:

  • Financial strongholds.  You may think you will never be good with money.  
  • Relational strongholds.  You may think you can never have a good relationship.
  • Habitual strongholds.  You’re addicted to something, or you have a habit.  
  • Mental strongholds.  You may say “I just have a bad attitude.  That’s just the way that I am.  I see life from a negative perspective.  
  • Spiritual stronghold.  You’re on fire for God one day, and then I’m lukewarm the next.
  • Physical stronghold.  You don’t like the way you look.  Maybe you have hair on your back and not on your head.  

You believe this is just the way you are and you cannot change.  After believing the lies long enough, we come to a place where we may say, “God, even You can’t even change me…this is just the way I am.”  What kind of bigger insult could we ever give to the One who made us than to say, “You don’t have the power to change me.”

A lie believed as truth will affect you as if it were true.  And this is one of the most common lies that we as men believe, “This is just the way I am.  I can’t change.  I've tried it before and it didn't work out, and so that proves that I can never ever change in this area of my life.”

How can we break out of our strongholds and surrender ultimately to the power of God that can and will set us completely free?

Let God into the game.  In the same way Scott’s dad changed the game for us God can do the same thing for you.

Let’s capture wrong thoughts.  Any thought that is inconsistent with God’s word- we grab it, take it captive and we make it prisoner.  We make it obedient to Christ.  Once we capture those thoughts we must release ‘right words.’  Because the tongue has the power of life and death, and so many people speak words of death and defeat.

Once we do those two things then we attack and win.  Colossians 1:29 “To this end I strenuously contend with all the energy Christ so powerfully works in me.”

When I see men struggling to break free from strongholds some of the most common mistakes I see are the attitudes of “I’ve got to try harder, I’ve got to be better, I’ve got to work harder.  If I really was devoted, I’d overcome this.” While this sounds like a good approach, in reality it becomes ‘all about us.’

What happens so often is we forget to let God into the game.  It’s me doing my part, and it’s His strength doing what I don’t have the ability to do.

You may be saying “ I've tried and I've even prayed about it.”  There is a difference between trying and praying, and trying and surrendering.

Surrender to Him. Let God in the game and you will see what kind of a game changer He truly is.

1 comment:

Get widget