Friday, September 28, 2018

Removing the Stronghold of Destruction

DestructionDestruction, unlike deterioration, has a definite end. The end of this present time and life is final and is promised in scripture. But does our understanding of the world have to end in destruction or can we be assured of a new beginning? In other words, are we setting ourselves up or causing our own destruction or can it be avoided?
Deuteronomy 30:19 I call on heaven and earth as witnesses today that I have offered you life or death, blessings or curses. Choose life so that you and your descendants will live.
Since destruction is inevitable for the physical body of a person especially one dedicated to the world our goal should be to avoid being destroyed, demolished or annihilated because of a mindset on worldly things. A stronghold of destruction sets in along with other strongholds that cause us to ignore our basic need for redemption and the things of God. Those of us in Christ live in the world but we are not of the world. Those of us without Christ are of the world and are guaranteed to end their lives in everlasting hellfire. Harsh? Sure it is. But the word of God assures us that we are given a choice (free will) and it’s up to us to get serious about that choice.
Deuteronomy 30:15 Today I offer you life and prosperity or death and destruction.
destruction (3)We have been given free will by our creator and that free will invites destruction when we ignore God and proceed to place ourselves in the center of the world (and sometimes universe) and its offerings. It’s so easy to abandon others and God’s will when this occurs. If we continue to ignore our creator we need to heed this warning "God cannot go against his own will."
Malachi 3:6 “I the LORD do not change. So you, O descendants of Jacob, are not destroyed.”
James 1:17 “Every good and perfect gift is from above, coming down from the Father of the heavenly lights, who does not change like shifting shadows.”
Numbers 23:19  “God is not a man, that He should lie, nor a son of man, that He should change His mind. Does He speak and then not act? Does He promise and not fulfill?”
What can be done in order to avoid the sure destruction that comes from wrong choices?

5 Biblical truths to overcome a stronghold of destruction:
1. Stop right now and change the way you think and act. If you are deliberately going against the word of God you are in danger.
Luke 3:8 Do those things that prove that you have turned to God and have changed the way you think and act. Don’t say, ‘Abraham is our ancestor.’ I guarantee that God can raise up descendants for Abraham from these stones.
God the Father 161 Corinthians 6:9-11 Or do you not know that the unrighteous will not inherit the kingdom of God? Do not be deceived: neither the sexually immoral, nor idolaters, nor adulterers, nor men who practice homosexuality, nor thieves, nor the greedy, nor drunkards, nor revilers, nor swindlers will inherit the kingdom of God. And such were some of you. But you were washed, you were sanctified, you were justified in the name of the Lord Jesus Christ and by the Spirit of our God.
2. Receive Christ Jesus. If you receive Christ and choose to walk uprightly whenever it depends on you or your choice, your life is free from destruction.
Romans 6:23 The payment for sin is death, but the gift that God freely gives is everlasting life found in Christ Jesus our Lord.
3. Ask God’s help to deliver you from any sin that you’re struggling with. Never allow any sin to stay long enough to become a stronghold that will lead to destruction.
Philippians 3:18-20 I have often told you, and now tell you with tears in my eyes, that many live as the enemies of the cross of Christ. 19 In the end they will be destroyed. Their own emotions are their god, and they take pride in the shameful things they do. Their minds are set on worldly things. 20 We, however, are citizens of heaven. We look forward to the Lord Jesus Christ coming from heaven as our Savior.
4. Fear God and Him alone. Do not allow peer pressure or fear of the opinions of others to keep you from turning from your sins.
Matthew 10:28 Don’t be afraid of those who kill the body but cannot kill the soul. Instead, fear the one who can destroy both body and soul in hell.
5. Keep your mind and heart pure and free from sin as much as you are able.
James 1:27 Pure, unstained religion, according to God our Father, is to take care of orphans and widows when they suffer and to remain uncorrupted by this world.
John 8:10-12 10 When Jesus raised Himself up, He said to her, Woman, where are your accusers? Has no man condemned you? 11 She answered, No one, Lord! And Jesus said, I do not condemn you either. Go on your way and from now on sin no more.
Written by Christian author, Pola Muzyka.

Tuesday, September 25, 2018

Free from the Stronghold of Panic

Panic is the epitome of fear. Fear taken to the extreme surprises its victims with an attack of panic that appears life-threatening. When a stronghold of panic is present the fearful extremes can repeat in panic attacks for days, months, and even years.

Words, places, people, and certain days can trigger the panic attack. Usually, its catalyst is an old fear that has never been resolved or released to the Lord. That's your hot button.
Panic-attack (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

If you’ve ever had a panic attack you felt your heart racing and you might have even seen it pounding in your chest raising and lowering rapidly to the pace of the accelerated pounding. You have a hard time breathing, your head is spinning, and overall you feel as if you are going to die.

Even though you think you’re sure you are having a heart attack take heed and take heart, you are just a victim of panic. (At these times, try: breathing in a paper lunch bag slowly, relaxing your shoulders and back, walking slowly while concentrating on your breathing, stretching your arms, legs, and even body.)

That doesn’t mean the extreme emotional response that caused the panic won’t create a problem in your body, it just means that you should be able to seek out and resolve the trigger before panic can affect your health. As with all other strongholds, the enemy is working behind the scenes to disable and disarm you. Temporary solutions mean either medication or counseling. The only real solution is in Christ for complete deliverance.
John 10:10 The thief comes only in order to steal and kill and destroy. I came that they may have and enjoy life, and have it in abundance (to the full, till it overflows).
When we allow the stronghold of panic to remain it invites other strongholds and itself could have been invited by a stronghold such as bitterness, unforgiveness, guilt, fear, anger, rage, and so forth. It’s hard to say how panic took root but the roots of panic usually lie inside of our thoughts, memories, circumstances or imaginings apart from God.

5 Biblical tips to overcome a stronghold of panic.
1. First and foremost, trust God. A mind stayed on God and his promises will never drift into the what-ifs of fear.
Psalm 53:5 There they are—panic-stricken— but there was no reason to panic, because God has scattered the bones of those who set up camp against you. You put them to shame. After all, God has rejected them.
Jeremiah 29:11 For I know the thoughts andplans that I have for you, says the Lord, thoughts andplansfor welfare and peace and not for evil, to give you hope in your final outcome.
2. Know Jesus as your Lord and Savior. He came so that we may have life and have it more abundantly. 1 Thessalonians 4:1
Mark 16:6 The young man said to them, “Don’t panic! You’re looking for Jesus from Nazareth, who was crucified. He has been brought back to life. He’s not here. Look at the place where they laid him.
3. Allow God’s words to wash over you. The more time you spend in the word and getting to know the real Christ, the less panic, fear, and all other strongholds will have control over your life.
Proverbs 1:23-28 23 If you will turn (repent) and give heed to my reproof, behold, I [Wisdom] will pour out my spirit upon you, I will make my words known to you. 24 Because I have called and you have refused [to answer], have stretched out my hand and no man has heeded it,25 And you treated as nothing all my counsel and would accept none of my reproof, 26 I also will laugh at your calamity; I will mock when the thing comes that shall cause you terror and panic—27 When your panic comes as a storm and desolation and your calamity comes on as a whirlwind, when distress and anguish come upon you. 28 Then will they call upon me [Wisdom] but I will not answer; they will seek me early and diligently but they will not find me.
Psalm 51:7 Purify me with hyssop, and I shall be clean [ceremonially]; wash me, and I shall [in reality] be whiter than snow.
4. Turn your thoughts to thoughts of love, peace, forgiveness, and purity.
Philippians 4:8 For the rest, brethren, whatever is true, whatever is worthy of reverence and is honorable and seemly, whatever is just, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely and lovable, whatever is kind and winsome and gracious, if there is any virtue and excellence, if there is anything worthy of praise, think on and weigh and take account of these things [fix your minds on them].
5. Follow Christ and rest in knowing that He will never leave you nor forsake you.
Hebrews 13:5 Let your character or moral disposition be free from love of money [including greed, avarice, lust, and craving for earthly possessions] and be satisfied with your present [circumstances and with what you have]; for He [God] Himself has said, I will not in any way fail you nor give you up nor leave you without support. [I will] not, [I will] not, [I will] not in any degree leave you helpless nor forsake nor let [you] down (relax My hold on you)! [Assuredly not!]
Written by Christian author, Pola Muzyka.

Tuesday, September 18, 2018

Stronghold of Rage

Rage demands its own way. It is always violently angry. It inflicts fear and terror in others. If it is allowed to become a stronghold  it will eventually push everyone out of its host’s life. Selfishness, jealousy, rebellion and offense can invite it in.
This stronghold can end our lives or keep goodness and love at a distance if it is allowed to continue.
Job 5:2a For vexation and rage kill the foolish man.
Rage can be instigated by [vain] imagination. Thoughts of foolishness and selfishness can bring it on. It is paranoid. It perceives offense where offense may not be intended. Every part of its existence is grounded in selfishness.

When rage moves forward it does not take anyone or anything else into consideration except its own agenda. It has no compassion, no respect, no concern for the welfare or well-being of its host or those around its host.
If this stronghold of rage is not stamped out it will kill. It may not be the death of a human but it will be the death of something good — something the host does not want to, or should ever lose.

5 Biblical tips to overcome rage:
1. Do not allow the stronghold of denial to cover over rage in your life. Be honest with yourself, God, and others.
Colossians 3:9-10 Do not lie to one another, for you have stripped off the old (unregenerate) self with its evil practices,10And have clothed yourselves with the new [spiritual self], which is [ever in the process of being] renewed and remolded into [fuller and more perfect knowledge upon] knowledge after the image (the likeness) of Him Who created it.
2. Try to understand why you are angry before it turns into [verbally or physically] foolish violence.
Luke 6:11 But they were filled with lack of understanding and senseless rage and discussed (consulted) with one another what they might do to Jesus.
3. When you feel rage trying to stick its ugly head into your life find a safe, quiet place and look to God for help before it moves in.
Hosea 7:16 They turn back, shift, or change, but not upwards [to the Most High]. They are like a deceitful bow; their princes shall fall by the sword for the insolence and rage of their tongue. This shall be [cause for] their derision and scorning in the land of Egypt.
4. Turn to God if someone has raged against you [especially for a foolish or nonsensical reason].
Psalm 7:6 Arise, O Lord, in Your anger; lift up Yourself against the rage of my enemies; and awake [and stir up] for me the justice and vindication [that] You have commanded.
5. Do not argue with fools or allow an argument to turn passionate. If someone you know is acting foolishly, back off– before you allow rage to take over your or their countenance.
Proverbs 29:9 If a wise man has an argument with a foolish man, the fool only rages or laughs, and there is no rest.
Job 31:12 For [uncontrolled passion] is a fire which consumes to Abaddon (to destruction, ruin, and the place of final torment); [that fire once lighted would rage until all is consumed] and would burn to the root all my [life’s] increase.
Written by Christian author, Pola Muzyka.

Saturday, September 15, 2018

Seasons of Change

No matter how old or young we are or what baggage we may carry, God continually guides us toward a perfect relationship with him. He doesn’t begin this process after we have abandoned sin. This is a process that began early in our lives.

God never condones sin, nor will he judge the sinner until the time is right.
  1 Timothy 5:22 Do not be in a hurry in the laying on of hands [giving the sanction of the church too hastily in reinstating expelled offenders or in ordination in questionable cases], nor share or participate in another man’s sins; keep yourself pure. Jesus never joined in sin but easily spoke to the sinner without hesitation because of his/her sin.
Our goal should be to seek out his will. If we take our eyes off the natural (using our five senses) and look to God who created all things, we begin to clearly perceive a pattern of the seasons of change in our lives. 

Daniel 2:21 He changes times and seasons; he deposes kings and raises up others. He gives wisdom to the wise and knowledge to the discerning.
Strongholds brought on by carelessly disregarding God’s will may hide dormant for years or worse, they may increase and imprison us until we come to the point of total submission. When we begin to trust God, and trust in God, rather than in our feelings, our circumstances, or our five senses we shed the veil that has been obscuring our vision. It’s this very veil that can keep us in bondage to strongholds for the rest of our lives. Some may call it denial, but in effect, we may have become comfortable with what should be given over to a season of change.

Trees- Sundial Garden Shoppe/Season Changing Sim Since God is drawing us to him from an early age, the enemy is also trying to take control. How can we take control back and go through the seasons of change in our lives without becoming bound by a demonic stronghold?

5 Biblical ways to advance through the seasons of change in our lives.
1. Realize and embrace the fact that our walk with God does come in seasons. Seek to advance toward God during these times.
Ecclesiastes 3:1-22 For everything there is a season, and a time for every matter under heaven: a time to be born, and a time to die; a time to plant, and a time to pluck up what is planted; a time to kill, and a time to heal; a time to break down, and a time to build up; a time to weep, and a time to laugh; a time to mourn, and a time to dance; a time to cast away stones, and a time to gather stones together; a time to embrace, and a time to refrain from embracing;
2. Seek out the wisdom of God. It's so easy to turn away from God when we have a crisis or a change in our lives that we didn’t expect and we can’t explain. This is a season of change and an opportunity to better understand the love of God.
Daniel 2:21 He changes the times and the seasons; He removes kings and sets up kings. He gives wisdom to the wise and knowledge to those who have understanding!
3. Do not dictate to God. Give God His right to keep some things about your season of change to Himself. His will for you is perfect after all and in the end, you will see the good he has done.
Acts 1:7 He said to them, It is not for you to become acquainted with and know what time brings [the things and events of time and their definite periods] or fixed years and seasons (their critical niche in time), which the Father has appointed (fixed and reserved) by His own choice and authority and personal power.
1 Corinthians 13:12 For now we are looking in a mirror that gives only a dim (blurred) reflection [of reality as in a riddle or enigma], but then [when perfection comes] we shall see in reality and face to face! Now I know in part (imperfectly), but then I shall know and understand fully and clearly, even in the same manner as I have been fully and clearly known and understood [by God]
4. Don’t doubt God during your season of change. Continue to trust in and rely on him.
Galatians 6:9 And let us not lose heart and grow weary and faint in acting nobly and doing right, for in due time and at the appointed season we shall reap, if we do not loosen and relax our courage and faint.
Romans 8:28 We are assured and know that [God being a partner in their labor] all things work together and are [fitting into a plan] for good to and for those who love God and are called according to [His] design and purpose.
5. Keep focused on doing right and on God’s words. Meditate on God’s words day and night.
Psalm 1:1-3 Blessed is the person who does not follow the advice of wicked people, take the path of sinners, or join the company of mockers. Rather, he delights in the teachings of the Lord and reflects on his teachings day and night. He is like a tree planted beside streams—a tree that produces fruit in season and whose leaves do not wither. He succeeds in everything he does.
Written by Christian author, Pola Muzyka.

Wednesday, September 12, 2018

Stronghold of Generational Disease

Four Generations of Cotters! (Photo credit: cacaye)
Four Generations of Cotters!Have you ever wondered why certain sicknesses run in families? Have we accepted this phenomenon as a fact of life? What does God say about these things? A generational disease is simply put, a curse on our bodies.
Luke 13:16 And ought not this woman, a daughter of Abraham, whom Satan has kept bound for eighteen years, be loosed from this bond on the Sabbath day? Notice that this verse says, “Satan has kept in bondage.”
The major qualifications for a disease could at times be imprinted into our DNA, but more than likely this imprinting does not necessarily have to result in disease. What are diseases and why do we seem to inherit them from our ancestors?

Disease is an abnormal condition that affects the body of an organism. Most disease is not a prerequisite. But a disease can come on us because of sin. Sin that has turned into a habit and eventual stronghold may, in fact, cause our bodies to invite sickness. Habits are learned behavior that can be passed down for decades. With these inherited habits come the sins that cause deterioration and disease.

Some of these habits are, temper flare-ups, overindulging in food or drink, smoking, blame, unforgiveness, laziness, and the list goes on. In other words, we learn the habits that become strongholds that cause what appears to be a generational disease.

What can be done about this stronghold of generational disease and how can we rid ourselves of it, even though it appears to have been passed down for generations?

5 Biblical tips on overcoming generational disease:

1. Seek out the main cause once you recognize an illness that appears to be passed down to you. High blood pressure, for example, may be caused by improper eating habits, lack of exercise, or something simple like not drinking enough water. Things you learned from others in your family.
Hosea 4:6 My people are destroyed for lack of knowledge; because you [the priestly nation] have rejected knowledge, I will also reject you that you shall be no priest to Me; seeing you have forgotten the law of your God, I will also forget your children.
2. Ask God in prayer for the strength you need to overcome a habit that has been taught to you and may potentially lead to sickness and even early death.
Numbers 14:18  ‘The Lord is slow to anger and abounding in steadfast love, forgiving iniquity and transgression, but he will by no means clear the guilty, visiting the iniquity of the fathers on the children, to the third and the fourth generation.’
3. Ask for the healing Jesus has already provided. Jesus has overcome the sins of the world. Receive his sacrifice if you haven’t already.
John 8:36 So if the Son sets you free, you will be absolutely free.
John 16:24 Up to this time you have not asked a [single] thing in My Name [as presenting all that I Am]; but now ask and keep on asking and you will receive, so that your joy (gladness, delight) may be full and complete.
4. Have faith that his sacrifice was sufficient for you to overcome what you believe is a generational curse.
Galatians 3:13 Christ paid the price to free us from the curse that the laws in Moses’ Teachings bring by becoming cursed instead of us. Scripture says, “Everyone who is hung on a tree is cursed.”
5. Turn from anything that may be causing you to harbor bad habits leading to sickness.
Proverbs 16:17 The highway of decent people turns away from evil. Whoever watches his way preserves his own life.
Written by Christian author, Pola Muzyka.
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Tuesday, September 11, 2018

Free from the Stronghold of Imaginings

Before we can destroy or remove a stronghold from our lives we must recognize what the stronghold is. In this case, imaginings are ideas, stories, and thoughts held in your mind but that are not true or real. Things you imagined may take place or that may have taken place may or may not be real.

So how do imaginings become a stronghold? We know that when we create in any way, we need to imagine the project first. The bible talks about visions as the first step in a calling or mission, as in:

Habakkuk 2:2-3 “Write the vision. Make it clear on tablets so that anyone can read it quickly. The vision will still happen at the appointed time. It hurries toward its goal. It won’t be a lie. If it’s delayed, wait for it. It will certainly happen. It won’t be late.
NYC - Metropolitan Museum of Art - The Vision ...
NYC – Metropolitan Museum of Art – The Vision of Saint John 

 So, how can imaginings be so bad and how can they become a stronghold?

The truth is that they aren’t bad when the imaginings are used to inspire, encourage, create, or otherwise glorify God with good. When do we recognize how this gift of imagination has turned into a stronghold against God’s will? The bible talks about vain, dark, empty-headed, vengeful, and evil imaginings.
Farmer plowing (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

2 Corinthians 10:3-5 Of course we are human, but we don’t fight like humans. The weapons we use in our fight are not made by humans. Rather, they are powerful weapons from God. With them we destroy people’s defenses, that is, their arguments and all their intellectual arrogance that oppose the knowledge of God. We take every thought captive so that it is obedient to Christ.
What can be done to avoid a stronghold of imaginings from entering our lives?

5 Biblical tips to overcome a stronghold of imaginings.
1. Be aware of your drifting thoughts? Are they pulling you closer to God and his will or further away? Do they glorify God? Or do they dishonor God?
Ephesians 3:20-21 Now to Him Who, by (in consequence of) the [action of His] power that is at work within us, is able to [carry out His purpose and] do super-abundantly, far over and above all that we [dare] ask or think [infinitely beyond our highest prayers, desires, thoughts, hopes, or dreams]—To Him be glory in the church and in Christ Jesus throughout all generations forever and ever. Amen (so be it).
2. Resist and rid yourself of any hateful, evil, vain, or hurtful thoughts which are the beginning of imaginings against God’s will.
James 4:7 So place yourselves under God’s authority. Resist the devil, and he will run away from you.
3. Replace any influence that may be encouraging your dark imaginings with positive, affirmative, joyful, loving, and godly influences available.
2 Timothy 2:21 So whoever cleanses himself [from what is ignoble and unclean, who separates himself from contact with contaminating and corrupting influences] will [then himself] be a vessel set apart and useful for honorable and noble purposes, consecrated and profitable to the Master, fit and ready for any good work.
4. Be diligent in the things of God. When God has given you a mission or a vision, set your heart and life on it immediately. You know it comes from God if you have the peace of God and if it lines up with his word.
Proverbs 11:27 He who diligently seeks good seeks [God’s] favor, but he who searches after evil, it shall come upon him.
5. Refuse to spend any more wasted time on vain imaginings.
Romans 1:21 Because when they knew and recognized Him as God, they did not honor and glorify Him as God or give Him thanks. But instead they became futile and [a]godless in their thinking [with vain imaginings, foolish reasoning, and stupid speculations] and their senseless minds were darkened.
Written by Christian author, Pola Muzyka.
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Monday, September 10, 2018

Free from the Stronghold of Rivalry

Rivalry and jealousy walk hand in hand. We see a competitor succeeding and we begin to have thoughts of anguish in one way or another. Some of these thoughts of anguish are jealousy thoughts, some are fearful thoughts, some are greed thoughts, and much more. When a spirit of rivalry comes into our thoughts, our thought-life gets complicated.
If these thoughts are not checked immediately they can and will lead to a stronghold that will bring us down completely. We can lose more than our businesses when we give ourselves over to the stronghold of rivalry.

Rivalry is a thief. When we become obsessed with its dominion we are headed down a path to destruction. A spirit of rivalry will take our peace, it will kill our ambition, and it will destroy our relationships. This spirit or stronghold will steal our future.

We will always have competitors–people trying to get an advantage over us, over the market or anything in life. Competition is good if it doesn't become an obsession. When we compete we strive to perfect our work. However, if we spend time obsessing about our competitors we will invite a spirit of rivalry into our minds that can become a habit that may have dominion over us forever.

Definition: A rival is a person or thing that tries to defeat or be more successful than
another, one of two or more striving to reach or obtain something that only one can possess, or one striving for competitive advantage.

When a spirit of rivalry enters our lives we may set ourselves up against the word of God. So how can we defeat this stronghold and get right with God, since God does not accept rivals and inviting a spirit of rivalry becomes a rival itself between us and God’s blessings?

Five biblical tips to help us overcome a stronghold of rivalry:

1. Don’t allow your thoughts to drift long enough to compare yourself or your business to others.
 Thinking about your competitors or ‘rivals’ will disconnect you from the will of God. Any thought you allow to linger that sets itself up against God or the word of God will hurt you in one way or another.
Jeremiah 17:9 “The human mind is the most deceitful of all things. It is incurable.  No one can understand how deceitful it is.
2. Take advice only from the word of God–not from the world. Worldly advice can create jealousy and rivalry.
James 3:15-17 That kind of wisdom doesn’t come from above. It belongs to this world. It is self-centered and demonic. 16 Wherever there is jealousy and rivalry, there is disorder and every kind of evil. 17 However, the wisdom that comes from above is first of all pure. Then it is peaceful, gentle, obedient, filled with mercy and good deeds, impartial, and sincere.
3. Become familiar with the words of Jesus Christ. When you know his will and his word you can distinguish thoughts that are not from him, particularly when you learn of someone in your own situation or when someone is doing something you strive to achieve.
John 10:10 A thief comes to steal, kill, and destroy. But I came so that my sheep will have life and so that they will have everything they need.
4. Choose the life of a servant. A leader is always expected to do more, give more, accomplish more, and be a servant to those he/she leads.
Mark 9:33-35 While Jesus was at home, he asked the disciples, “What were you arguing about on the road?” 34 They were silent. On the road they had argued about who was the greatest. 35 He sat down and called the twelve apostles. He told them, “Whoever wants to be the most important person must take the last place and be a servant to everyone else.”
5. Pray for God to take a corrupt nature from you so that you can see clearly what God’s will (God who gave you life) is for your life.
Galatians 5:19-21 Now, the effects of the corrupt nature are obvious: illicit sex, perversion, promiscuity, 20 idolatry, drug use, hatred, rivalry, jealousy, angry outbursts, selfish ambition, conflict, factions, 21 envy, drunkenness, wild partying, and similar things. I’ve told you in the past and I’m telling you again that people who do these kinds of things will not inherit the kingdom of God.
Written by Christian author, Pola Muzyka.

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Free from the Stronghold of Sarcasm

Sarcasm and laziness walk hand in hand before a stronghold of sarcasm is established. One of the easiest ways to hurt an offender is to stab out with our words. However, we take comfort in thinking that there are little or limited physical consequences of using sarcasm, and as a result, we use this weapon over and over again until it becomes a habit leading to a stronghold.

When we use our mouths to tear down or destroy someone, we are blocking ourselves from the steps it might take to tackle a problem with the right actions and words.
Proverbs 26:16 A lazy person thinks he is wiser than seven people who give a sensible answer.

So how does this stronghold take root in our hearts and minds? To understand this, we first need to know what sarcasm is and how it can be destructive.

Unusual sarcasm noticeUnusual sarcasm notice (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

In the dictionary, we see that sarcasm is the use of remarks that clearly mean the opposite of what they say, made in order to hurt someone’s feelings or to criticize something in a humorous way

Sarcasm can be brought on by anger, frustration, abuse, hate, bitterness, and many other strongholds. In effect sarcasm is “a sharp, bitter, or cutting expression or remark; a bitter gibe or taunt.” The word, sarcasm, comes from the Greek σαρκασμός (sarkasmos) which is taken from σαρκάζειν meaning “to tear flesh, bite the lip in rage, sneer”.

When sarcasm digs in and becomes a stronghold, as with any other verbal abuse, it will destroy in some way–either the host or the victim-target or both. How can we recognize when our words are sarcastic and set us up against the word of God?

5 Biblical tips to overcome the stronghold of sarcasm:

1. Check your motives. Will, what you are about to say build up or tear down?
Proverbs 12:20 Deceit is in the heart of those who plan evil, but joy belongs to those who advise peace.
Matthew 12:37 By your words you will be declared innocent, or by your words you will be declared guilty.”
2. Trust God and his word for your battles.
Isaiah 55:11 My word, which comes from my mouth, is like the rain and snow.  It will not  come back to me without results. It will accomplish whatever I want and achieve whatever I send it to do.”
2 Corinthians 10:4 The weapons we use in our fight are not made by humans. Rather, they are powerful weapons from God. With them we destroy people’s defenses, that is, their arguments…
3. Use your words carefully. Any careless word will be wasted.
Matthew 5:37 Simply say yes or no. Anything more than that comes from the evil one.
Ephesians 5:4 It’s not right that dirty stories, foolish talk, or obscene jokes should be mentioned among you either. Instead, give thanks to God.
Matthew 12:36 I can guarantee that on judgment day people will have to give an account of every careless word they say.
4. Search your heart. Are you speaking life or death into existence?
Ephesians 4:29 Don’t say anything that would hurt another person. Instead, speak only what is good so that you can give help wherever it is needed. That way, what you say will help those who hear you.
Ephesians 4:15 Instead, as we lovingly speak the truth, we will grow up completely in our relationship to Christ, who is the head.
Proverbs 12:20 Deceit is in the heart of those who plan evil, but joy belongs to those who advise peace.
5. Remember the law of sowing and reaping. What you sow (even with your words) is what you will reap in this life.
Proverbs 18:21 The tongue has the power of life and death, and those who love to talk will have to eat their own words.
Written by Christian author, Pola Muzyka.

Saturday, September 8, 2018

Free from the Stronghold of Facetiousness

Facetiousness, like many other strongholds, begins as a thought which may become a habit. A facetious stronghold is one of the most hidden strongholds because it is sanctioned by the world and worldly thinking. We may enjoy a laugh or two at the expense of another without even being aware that this spirit has taken up residence.
Castell Harlech - - 1215326When discovered, this stronghold could rise up and invite other strongholds to protect itself. Before it gives up its domain, facetiousness may invite strongholds of denial, defense, arrogance, spite, criticism, and many others.

In the guise of resembling humor, facetiousness in a host may gain credibility and continue on for years without the host or anyone else seeing the true destroyer behind the host’s words. These words treat serious issues with deliberately inappropriate humor.

Ephesians 5:4 Let there be no filthiness nor foolish talk nor crude joking, which are out of place, but instead let there be thanksgiving.

Although at first the words of a host of facetiousness may seem amusing or frivolous, the gift of words is given to us by God.  Proverbs 18:21 The tongue has the power of life and death, and those who love to talk will have to eat their own words.

So, what can be done to keep this seemingly innocuous habit from becoming a stronghold?

5 Biblical tips to overcome the stronghold of facetiousness:

1. Weigh your words carefully. Since we know our words are powerful, we need to make sure the power of our words builds up, rather than knocks down.

Matthew 12:36-37 “I can guarantee that on judgment day people will have to give an account of every careless word they say. 37 By your words, you will be declared innocent, or by your words, you will be declared guilty.”

2. Take control over your own habits, particularly when it comes to the words you use.

Ephesians 5:4 Let there be no filthiness nor foolish talk nor crude joking, which are out of place, but instead let there be thanksgiving

3. Stay in Christ. A friend of the world will come to ruin.

James 4:4 Don’t you know that love for this evil world is hatred toward God? Whoever wants to be a friend of this world is an enemy of God. 

4. Recognize the difference between foolish and wise words. Filter out the input you get through the media, your friends, and others around you.

Ecclesiastes 10:13 A fool starts out by talking foolishness and ends up saying crazy things that are dangerous.

5. Follow Godly advice and wisdom from the word of God. No one who takes God seriously will allow facetiousness to rein in his/her life.

James 1:22 Do what God’s word says. Don’t merely listen to it, or you will fool yourselves.
Proverbs 10:8 The one who is truly wise accepts commands, but the one who talks foolishly will be thrown down headfirst.

Written by Christian author, Pola Muzyka

Stronghold of Stinginess

Stinginess like pettiness depletes the host of whatever it is withholding. A stingy person is unwilling or shows an unwillingness to share with others. A stronghold of stinginess sets in when the fear of poverty increases–unfortunately, this same stronghold perpetuates poverty and the resultant fear.

If a stronghold of poverty or fear didn’t come before stinginess became an issue, it invites the stronghold of poverty and of course many other strongholds along with it, depending on the measure of stinginess–think, Ebenezer Scrooge. In the story of Scrooge, Ebenezer Scrooge became shut off to the world, fearful, and petty in all he did.

Proverbs 11:24 There is that scatters, and yet increases, and there is that withhold more than is meet, but it tends to poverty.

Where does this stronghold come from?
Like most other strongholds stinginess begins in our thoughts. Fear is a great contributor to this thought process but selfishness is not far behind. Fear of losing, of not having enough, of going without, of getting too close–in short, any number of thoughts can trigger the thought to withhold something that should be given.

What can be done to keep this stronghold from setting in? 

5 Biblical tips to overcome or obliterate a stronghold of stinginess:

1. Learn God’s will for provisions in your life and His direction. 

Romans 8:28 And we know that all things work together for good to them that love God, to them who are the called according to his purpose.

Proverbs 28:27 Whoever gives to the poor lacks nothing. Whoever ignores the poor receives many curses.

2. Trust the Lord to keep His promises for your obedience.

Philippians 4:19 But my God shall supply all your need according to his riches in glory by Christ Jesus.

3. Cast away any fear that might lead you to believe anything other than what God has said. Be patient.

Proverbs 28:22 He that hastens to be rich has an evil eye and considers not that poverty shall come upon him.

4. Give generously when you have the opportunity and ability to give.

2 Corinthians 9:6 But this I say, He which sows sparingly shall reap also sparingly; and he which sows bountifully shall reap also bountifully.

5. Love. Keep your thoughts free from anything that would cause you not to withhold love.

Matthew 22:36-40 Master, which is the great commandment in the law? 37 Jesus said unto him, Thou shalt love the Lord thy God with all thy heart, and with all thy soul, and with all thy mind. 38 This is the first and great commandment. 39 And the second is like unto it, Thou shalt love thy neighbor as thyself. 40 On these two commandments hang all the law and the prophets.
Written by Christian author, Pola Muzyka

Friday, September 7, 2018

Free from the Stronghold of Acrimony

As with almost every stronghold, acrimony begins in our thoughts. When we allow thoughts of hatred, anger, vengeance, or offense to well up inside us we may invite a bitterness which we cannot control, and that bitterness will spew out at every opportunity.
Terrific movie of how easy it is to push anger over the edge.

Unlike bitterness, which can hide for decades in a host before it does damage to anyone but the host, acrimony blurts out its intentions. Harsh, bitter words spill forth without any guard or regard to the outcome. Many a bully uses acrimony to hurt, harm, and otherwise try to destroy.

Acrimony can be the culmination of days, months, or even years of internal bitterness. When acrimony increases it can become a stronghold that’s hard to defeat.

The dictionary describes acrimony as harsh or biting sharpness especially of words, manner, or disposition. At times our words are not tempered and we speak out acrimoniously. However, when a spirit or stronghold of acrimony is present the same words can seriously harm the hearer and may be spoken over and over again. Harsh words spoken over and over again will have a destructive effect on the hearer.

Job 10:1 I hate my life.  I will freely express my complaint.  I will speak as bitterly as I feel.

What can be done to prevent acrimony?
5 Biblical tips to prevent and overcome a stronghold of acrimony. 
1. Temper all your input with God’s words for you and his will for your future before you allow bitter thoughts to accumulate or fester.

Job 7:11 “Therefore I will not keep silent; I will speak out in the anguish of my spirit, I will complain in the bitterness of my soul.

2. Guard your heart. Everything you embrace and accept should be glorifying to God.

Matthew 15:8 This people draweth nigh unto me with their mouth, and honoureth me with their lips; but their heart is far from me.

Matthew 15:18  But those things which proceed out of the mouth come forth from the heart; and they defile the man.

3. Ask God to guard your thoughts. Our thoughts can lead us to bitterness and eventually blurting out that bitterness or acrimony.

Philippians 4:6-8 Never worry about anything. But in every situation let God know what you need in prayers and requests while giving thanks. Then God’s peace, which goes beyond anything we can imagine, will guard your thoughts and emotions through Christ Jesus. Finally, brothers and sisters, keep your thoughts on whatever is right or deserves praise: things that are true, honorable, fair, pure, acceptable, or commendable.

4. Turn everything over to God in prayer and thanksgiving before bitterness turns to acrimony.

Psalm 39:12 Listen to my prayer, O Lord.  Open your ear to my cry for help.  Do not be deaf to my tears,  for I am a foreign resident with you, a stranger like all my ancestors.

5. Take control of your own emotions. Determine to keep yourself free from acrimony and outside influences that may cause it forever.

Ephesians 4:31 31 Get rid of your bitterness, hot tempers, anger, loud quarreling, cursing, and hatred.
Written by Christian author, Pola Muzyka.

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Free from the Stronghold of Guilt

Judgementalism stalks with other religious spirits to confuse us when we attempt to rest in the promises of God given to us through the salvation of Jesus Christ. The stronghold of guilt can steal our peace, joy, trust, and even our faith.
It is a weapon Satan uses to try to separate us from God and cause us to live a life of torment even after we’ve been set free–thinking that we still have a death sentence. It’s a weapon that would turn us from Christ if we gave into it.

What don’t we understand about freedom in Christ? God sacrificed his own son [filled with all the fullness of the Godhead] for us. In order for us to be free to love him, he first loved us. 

Our time on earth is a fraction of eternity. Our earthly bodies are dust.  The glorified body, given to those who receive Christ, will be our eternal, non-corruptible, heavenly body, able to be present with God.

Why did God make us so imperfect that we would have to suffer a life of guilt? He didn’t. Sin entered in. God gave us free will. We were free from the beginning to choose right or wrong.
In our free will, we gave/give ourselves over to sin. But the stronghold of guilt no longer has a place in our lives when [if] we accept Christ because sin has been defeated.

5 Biblical tips to overcome guilt:
1. Know who you are in Christ. The enemy [Satan] cannot take that away from you.
1 Corinthians 6:11  11And such [sinners] some of you were [once]. But you were washed clean (purified by a complete atonement for sin and made free from the guilt of sin), and you were consecrated (set apart, hallowed), and you were justified [pronounced righteous, by trusting] in the name of the Lord Jesus Christ and in the [Holy] Spirit of our God.
2. Keep away from self-righteous hypocrites.
Colossians 2:8-9 See to it that no one carries you off as spoil or makes you yourselves captive by his so-called philosophy and intellectualism and vain deceit (idle fancies and plain nonsense), following human tradition (men’s ideas of the material rather than the spiritual world), just crude notions following the rudimentary and elemental teachings of the universe and disregarding [the teachings of] Christ (the Messiah).
Matthew 22:18 But Jesus, aware of their malicious plot, asked, “Why do you put Me to the test and try to entrap Me, you pretenders (hypocrites)?”
Luke 6:42 How can you say to another believer, ‘Friend, let me take the piece of sawdust out of your eye,’ when you don’t see the beam in your own eye? You hypocrite! First, remove the beam from your own eye. Then you will see clearly to remove the piece of sawdust from another believer’s eye.
3. Read the word daily. Trust what God says to those who have received salvation.
Romans 10:17 So faith comes from hearing the message, and the message that is heard is what Christ spoke.
Revelation 3:10″Because you kept my Word in passionate patience, I’ll keep you safe in the time of testing that will be here soon, and all over the earth, every man, woman, and child put to the test.
4. Forgive others–forgive yourself. If guilt still plagues you after you are sure of your salvation, it’s possible that you didn’t forgive you. Remember salvation is for all those who receive it by faith. No condemnation to those who are in Christ. Romans 8:1
Luke 6:37 “Stop judging, and you will never be judged. Stop condemning, and you will never be condemned. Forgive, and you will be forgiven.
Luke 1:37 But nothing is impossible for God.”
Philippians 4:13 I can do everything through Christ who strengthens me.
Proverbs 16:3 Entrust your efforts to the Lord, and your plans will succeed.
5. Turn to God. Ask him for his grace and help to live with yesterday’s events so that guilt will no longer have a stronghold in your life.
Colossians 2:9 For in Him the whole fullness of Deity (the Godhead) continues to dwell in bodily form [giving complete expression of the divine nature].
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