Thursday, October 30, 2014

"Protect Your Soul From the Destructive Forces of the Enemy!" by Victoria Boyson

Repost from the Elijah List.
"Protect Your Soul From the Destructive Forces of the Enemy!"

Victoria Boyson, Montgomery, TX

"You must love the Lord your God with all your heart, all your soul, and all your strength, and all your mind. And, love your neighbor as yourself." Luke 10:27, NLT

Our world is inundated with intense and even frightful events. We who are the reigning spiritual power on the earth are called on to pray boldly for the will of God to be made manifest in any horrendous situations.

Intercessors are the legs the Church stands on and intercession should be the core substance of every Believer. Due to the important position every intercessor holds in the world, we must be on guard against the enemy's tricks to deactivate our authority in the spirit realm. None of us are perfect, and we all have weaknesses, so, we must all remain watchful of the impact we are having on the world by remaining alert to the hindrances our own souls.

I've seen many who've prayed positive declarations into the spirit realm one minute, yet, slander their brother the next. Naturally, this grieves my spirit, not just because I know it will injure the person being slandered (that's inevitable), but because I can feel in my spirit how deeply it will injure their own heart. Every word we speak affects our soul – either for good or for bad. Even those who are careful to make only positive, life-filled declarations over themselves simply have no idea the poison they release in their own lives by speaking evil of others.

Slandering a Brother

Any time we accuse or slander a brother, we are reducing our authority in the spirit realm. God can only give us authority if He can trust us to use that authority to benefit His Kingdom.

Of course, I am burdened for those who have had their reputation assassinated by the flippant defamation of their character, but I feel in my spirit a very weighty and increasing burden for those who choose to release the slander. I sense the darkness they've released into their own lives and what they will have to battle in the future because of it. (Photo via Pixabay)

They've been targeted by the enemy and satan has infected them with his agenda against a brother leading them to cause strife. It seems like most Christians have winked at this sin, thinking other sins were much worse, but God's not winking.

Proverbs 6:16-19 lists seven sins which the Lord hates and intensely abhors the most, those He considers to be an abomination: Haughty eyes, a lying tongue, hands that shed innocent blood, a heart that devises wicked plans, feet that run rapidly to evil, a false witness who utters lies and one who spreads strife among brothers.

I think it's healthy to remind ourselves of the things the Lord hates – the sins He considers to be an abomination (a vile, shameful or detestable action, condition, habit, etc.). Slander is quite sneaky and often attempts to disguise itself as a noble action or a warning about someone. It is a deadly, preemptive strike against a brother or sister, a sect or church or other group of people. Slander lays the groundwork to disparage the value of anyone the enemy wants to target and destroy.

The enemy sent slander in advance of the Jewish people in Nazi Germany. The people were prepped in advance to lend their souls to embrace the annihilation of an entire race. We are seeing that today against Believers and much of it is being done by other Believers.

Guard Your Heart

Satan "prowls around like a roaring lion looking for someone to devour" (1 Peter 5:8), someone he can destroy with hatred, jealousy and strife. When he finds his prey, he infects them with his twisted agenda and they begin to do his work for him. Sadly, they believe they are accomplishing a noble service for the Lord, but, truly, they're allowing the enemy to use them to spread strife in the Body. (Photo via Wikimedia)

It's a double whammy! Most often, the enemy will target those who truly have a great destiny, corrupting their soul with the bitter demon of slander and accusation against others, thereby thwarting their destiny in God. Replacing it with a perverted copy of their true destiny, the enemy can kill two birds with one stone by luring the once greatly destined warrior to do his work for him.

Those in the Body who seem to make it their job to attack and slander – the petty police who watch those visible in the Church as the Pharisees watched Jesus – may never change. I understand that. Yet, they use other Believers to do their dirty work, like the Pharisees used the Roman government to kill Jesus (John 18:28-31), and like Jezebel used the city elders to kill Naboth (1 Kings 21:1017). Truly, the Lord warned us of wolves in sheep's clothing (Matthew 10:16).

Treat Your Neighbor As Yourself

My hope is to reach out to those dear souls who love the Lord with all their heart, soul and mind, but who have been misled by someone and have become a helper used to spread their agenda of strife against a brother or sister. To you, precious ones, I say: Guard your heart, guard you soul, guard your strength and guard your mind BY loving your neighbor as yourself (see Luke 10:27).

In Matthew 7:12, Jesus said, "So in everything, do to others what you would have them do to you, for this sums up the Law and the Prophets" – that includes what we say about others. In everything we say, in every article or message we forward, in every Facebook post we share, we must stop and ask ourselves: "Would I want this said about me?"

How would you want your neighbor to treat you?

So, you may ask, "Victoria, are you saying we should never address the wrongs done by others in the Body?" Well, let me say...

Eli, the high priest, showed us how very easy it is to misconstrue another person's actions and motives and made a painful experience even more painful when he was convinced Hannah was a horrible sinner who'd come to church drunk (1 Samuel 1:9-17), the complete opposite of which he found out later to be true. He had bumbled his way into Hannah's pain and threw around false accusations against her, humiliating himself.

So be very careful when you are "sure" of a brother's motives before you accuse and slander him. Eli, at least, approached Hannah personally with his presumptive ideas about her. Indeed, is there any honor in slandering a brother or ministry without first at least talking to them about your offense against them? – There is NO honor in slander, period!

What's Your Religion Worth?

Our words are extremely powerful, much more than most Christians recognize. We invite trouble into our lives by not controlling our tongue as the Word says in James 1:26-27, "If anyone thinks himself to be religious, and yet does not bridle his tongue but deceives his own heart, this man's religion is worthless."

Truly, life and death are in the power of the tongue (Proverbs 18:21). If our tongue produces death and trouble, you have to stop and wonder, "What have I said lately?" And this goes double for those in positions of leadership.

If we are given a sphere of influence, we are responsible to protect that influence from the enemy's schemes. We are held responsible for what we've been given. Moreover, if we use our influence to slander others, it will come back to harm us.

Years ago, a dear friend betrayed me and set about on a campaign to "warn" people about me. I honestly felt instant fear for them the moment I heard what they were doing.

I do not think I am any more special than any other Christian, but I do know how much God loves me. He is protective of the work He has done in me and is doing through me.

I feel genuine pity for those who attack and slander their brothers and sisters in the faith. Truly, I am afraid of what they are inviting into their own souls as they embrace the work of the adversary. For those lies produce a harvest of death as we are warned in Proverbs 6:14-15, "...who with perversity in his heart continually devises evil, who spreads strife. Therefore his calamity will come suddenly; instantly he will be broken and there will be no healing." ((Gulp!))

There's an old quote from World War II which says, "Loose lips sink ships" and they also create an atmosphere of death! (Photo via Huffington Post)

Protect Your Love

Yes, we should obviously guard our tongue when speaking of those beloved of the Lord and those in service to Him. However, we need to guard our tongues for our enemies as well. Fight for them – wrestle with the demons who've taken over their heart, using your authority to liberate them from the lies of the enemy! Pray for the love God has for you to invade and penetrate their heart.

Pray for them to know and experience the love of the Father because, as they do that, love will manifest in their treatment of you. If they refuse His love and you keep sending it to them, that love will come back on you and you will benefit from it. If, however, you send curses instead of blessings, the curses will come back on you in one way or another.

Our Lord taught about praying for our enemies and blessing those who attack us. Why? It wasn't so much for those who are attacking us, but to protect our own hearts against the bitterness of unforgiveness that would inevitably destroy us.

I'm not asking you to lay down and let people injure you. No. I have a saying, "I don't do stupid twice!" If someone betrays you, don't give them place to do it again (unless the Lord directs you to). You have a responsibility to protect the work the Lord's accomplished in your life; don't let your compassion destroy you.

You must guard your heart against bitterness and protect the love of God in your heart. Use the authority of your words to speak constructively about your enemy what you would like to see manifest in their lives, not what is actually manifesting through them. (Photo via flickr)

As the extension of Christ on the earth, we should use our tongues to produce the life He destined for us to live. With our words, we can transform our world by using our words productively to speak forth the love we'd like to see manifest in our brothers, not give way to the destructive lives of the enemy. We must decree and declare the will of our Father, not the lies of the enemy.

Sharing! Sharing! Sharing!

Sometimes I like to scroll through what my Christian brothers and sisters are sharing on Facebook. I feel like it gives a quick overview of the hearts of the saints. Usually, I'm blessed by what I see, yet, sometimes I am astonished at the things I read that are openly slandering other brothers and sisters in Christ.

When I see a ministry or fellow Christian sharing slander about another brother or ministry, a GIANT RED FLAG goes up in my spirit. I don't want to have anything to do with strife-spreading, God hating, abominating SLANDER! I won't forward it, I won't read it and I'm not curious about the lies. I don't want to take part in anything that smells like Hell. And I don't want my cherished friends to either, because I care for you.

Our Father sees what we share or like on Facebook, Twitter, etc. He hears the words you speak. He sees how you treat those you think are beneath you. He sees it all and it hurts Him when you enter into the adversary's agenda.

BUT, it totally and completely blesses God when you come to the defense of a brother. When you speak out truth and love in support of those being slandered, His heart overflows!

Our Father is generous, slow to anger and quick to love (Joel 2:13). He is not a vengeful Father. His forgiveness is unfathomable. Even though I know it hurts Him significantly when we get caught up in slander, He readily forgives us when we ask Him to.

You see, He sees where souls spend eternity. He weighs the devastation a human causes against the judgment of their soul. He sees the cost they will have to pay if mercy doesn't have its way in them. So, even though it hurts Him to hear the slander against His children, He waits hoping His beloved child will return to Him and learn to love others.

Learning to Love

Loving your neighbor IS loving yourself. It's protecting your soul from the devices of the enemy; it's creating a harvest of mercy in your future when you need it. It is WORSHIP to your God. Love is also warfare, releasing a destructive force to the powers of darkness. Satan cannot understand love. He is hopelessly defensive against it.

Love is the greatest power on the earth and, for those who understand it, it holds the key to great blessings. Mercy has no equal in the realm of darkness and when we embrace love, not hate, we annihilate the plans of the enemy. We cause him catastrophic damage when we bless those who curse us. And we protect our own soul when we release the Kingdom of Heaven through our words. (Photo via flickr)

Think about it! Who do you want to hurt more... your brother or sister in Christ, or your adversary, the devil? Yeah, I know... me too!

Victoria Boyson
Speaking Life Ministries


Tuesday, October 28, 2014

Ezekiel 35-37: Wind, the Catalyst for Life

Ezekiel 37:9
Amplified Bible (AMP)

9 Then said He to me, Prophesy to the breath and spirit, son of man, and say to the breath and spirit, Thus says the Lord God: Come from the four winds, O breath and spirit, and breathe upon these slain that they may live.

10 So I prophesied as He commanded me, and the breath and spirit came into [the bones], and they lived and stood up upon their feet, an exceedingly great host.

 The Lord has been speaking to me about wind the last few years.  I hadn't noticed previously that the famous "Dry Bones" portion of the Bible speaks of the "four winds" being the catalyst for life. 

According to Smith's Bible Dictionary

The north wind, or, as it was usually called "the north," was naturally the coldest of the four, and its presence is hence invoked as favorable to vegetation in So 4:16 It is described in Pr 25:23 as bringing rain.

The east wind crosses the sandy wastes of Arabia Deserts before reaching Israel and was hence termed "the wind of the wilderness." Job 1:19; Jer 13:14 It blows with violence, and is hence supposed to be used generally for any violent wind.

The south wind, which traverses the Arabian peninsula before reaching Israel, must necessarily be extremely hot.

The west wind reaches Israel loaded with moisture gathered from the Mediterranean, and is hence expressly termed by the Arabs "the fathers of the rain."
I find it interesting that these four winds brought life to the dry bones which filled the valley mentioned in Ezekiel 37:1.  But although the dry bones lived,

 "...they say, Our bones are dried up and our hope is lost; we are completely cut off."  Ezekiel 37:11 

In the natural, a catalyst speeds up a chemical reaction without itself being changed or consumed (Merriam Webster).  The wind will always be the wind as long as the earth remains.  It continues its work of bringing rain (Holy Spirit) for the growth of vegetation (spiritual fruit), violently blows off anything that would stick to us while in the wilderness, dials up the heat causing us to thirst for water (Holy Spirit), and then quenches our thirst with rain (signifying His Spirit and blessing poured out on us).

Father, thank You for the live-giving, restorative power in wind!  Thank You that no matter how dry, how dead, how hopeless a situation, Your wind prevails!  We receive Your wind, Lord.  In Jesus' name, AMEN!!!

Saturday, October 18, 2014

Ezekiel 32-34: God's Hydrangea Promise

Ezekiel 34:11-16
Amplified Bible (AMP)

11 For thus says the Lord God: Behold, I, I Myself, will search for My sheep and will seek them out.
12 As a shepherd seeks out his sheep in the day that he is among his flock that are scattered, so will I seek out My sheep; and I will rescue them out of all places where they have been scattered in the day of clouds and thick darkness.
13 And I will bring them out from the peoples and gather them from the countries and will bring them to their own land; and I will feed them upon the mountains of Israel, by the watercourses, and in all the inhabited places of the country.
14 I will feed them with good pasture, and upon the high mountains of Israel shall their fold be; there shall they lie down in a good fold, and in a fat pasture shall they feed upon the mountains of Israel.
15 I will feed My sheep and I will cause them to lie down, says the Lord God.
16 I will seek that which was lost and bring back that which has strayed, and I will bandage the hurt and the crippled and will strengthen the weak and the sick, but I will destroy the fat and the strong [who have become hardhearted and perverse]; I will feed them with judgment and punishment.
These verses give me personal encouragement among many verses of censure directed towards the Lord's sheep.  No matter how we have failed or others have failed us, our Heavenly Father promises...
  • I Myself, will search
  • I will rescue
  • I will bring them out
  • I will feed them 
  • I will cause them to lie down
  • I will seek and bring back
  • I will bandage and strengthen
The Lord is wonderful!  He has revealed Himself to me, personally in all of the ways He has promised above!
One of the ways He fulfills His promises to me is through dreams.  Several years ago, my Abba gave me a beautiful "promise dream." 
In this dream, Jesus handed me a single blue hydrangea.  My heart could feel His intense love and I awoke feeling loved simultaneously a sweet flowery scent permeated the atmosphere in the room!
I knew the Lord was pouring out His love.  I knew He was giving me a gift.  But, I didn't fully comprehend what He was communicating until recently.
My husband, Strongman, and I just celebrated thirty years of marriage on September 22nd.  My sweet husband took me to the beach for a week to celebrate. 
During the months before our trip, the Lord reminded me of the beautiful "blue hydrangea dream."  I felt like He said that His gift of love to me was a husband who has loved me from my youth.  That no matter what trials or temptations or failings both of us have walked through, His grace kept us together.  His grace empowered us to love and forgive each other.
In honor of the Lord and my Strongman, I covertly planned a beach renewal of vows.  Both of my wonderful sisters assisted me with my plan.  My sister, Maryann, ordered the dress so Strongman wouldn't see the charge on our credit card.  My sister, Jane, altered the dress.  Thank you, wonderful Sisters!  My Dad allowed me to store the dress at his house, so Strongman wouldn't see it.  :)
Let me encourage those who are married.  The Lord binds two together; His grace is the glue.  No matter what attack the evil one launches against your marriage, His grace, the awesome power of God is available.  Cling to Father!  Embrace your mate!  Remember to forgive!  Receive His gift!

Sunday, October 5, 2014

Ezekiel 28-31: Faithfulness in the Face of Temptation

"I the Lord [the Sovereign Ruler, Who calls forth loyalty and obedient service]."

This statement is repeated several times throughout the selected chapters.

God is reminding us to live our lives responsibly, being mindful that God is Sovereign.

a :  one possessing or held to possess supreme political power or sovereignty

b :  one that exercises supreme authority within a limited sphere

c :  an acknowledged leader :  arbiter
That means we should be following His direction about how we live. 
The Sovereign God "calls forth loyalty and obedient service."
What does it mean to be loyal?

I think about Christians who are faced with death by beheading for being loyal to the Sovereign God. 

Would you continue profession of loyalty to the Sovereign if faced with death?

Would I remain loyal to my Sovereign if my families' life was threatened?

Consistent prayers for grace to empower us to remain loyal and obedient are imperative!  I pray that we may never experience this demonic terror!

Accessing grace to practice loyalty and obedience in our everyday life enlarges our spiritual resolve for greater trials and temptations.

Someday, when my life on earth has ended, I long to hear my Sovereign say, "Well done, My good and faithful (loyal) servant."

With each choice I make here and now, I want to hear Him say, "Well done, My Beloved, good and faithful daughter."

I'm desperate for His grace.  It's the only way!!!

Sovereign, Father, I receive Your grace to empower me in loyalty and obedient service.  I hear Your call.  I've seen Your power. I am well acquainted with my weaknesses, yet, You say Your strength is made perfect in my weakness.  Perfect Your strength in me!!!  For the glory of Jesus always!  AMEN!!!