Overcoming What Tries To Hold You Down Or Back

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If I had a penny for every time someone said to me. . . “the enemy is just trying to hold me down” or “my circumstances are holding me back”. . .I would be able to pay for my dream trip of two weeks in Bora Bora.

When people say that to me my usual response is. . .you know. . .you’re right. . and I don’t want to know your circumstances.

Dictionary.com defines circumstances as:

“a condition, detail, part, or attribute, with respect to time, place, manner, agent, etc., that accompanies, determines, or modifies a fact or event; a modifying or influencing factor”

Spiritually speaking. . .I define circumstance as the circle you’re standing in.

We shouldn’t be standing still. . .we should be moving from glory unto glory. (2 Corinthians 3:18)

In which case, we would be leaving our circumstances behind.

So for me. . .the question is why do I want to hear about what the person ought to be leaving behind.

Every time someone painstakingly reviews, renews and refreshes their circumstances they are forcing themselves to live them again.

We don’t need to revive our current dilemma . . .we need to seek answers. . .ways to rise above our circumstances. . .whatever they may be.

However … in a chronic circumstance… it may call for changing how we view those circumstances.

When and if you’re tempted to tell someone they don’t your circumstances there are three things you’re setting in motion.

First, when you say you don’t know MY circumstances. . .you are taking ownership of those circumstances.

Never possess what you want to release.

The enemy wants you to believe. . .the circumstances you’re facing are yours and always will be.

If we believe there is life and death in the power of the tongue and scripture says there is . . .then calling the circumstances yours is a big mistake.

Proverbs 18:21 in the World English Bible translation says:

“Death and life are in the power of <<your name>>’s tongue: and if <<your name>> loves it, <<he/she/they>>loves it, <<he/she/they>> will eat its fruit.”

Whatever you speak becomes yours. Give your circumstances to God. . .rise above this trick of the enemy.

1 Peter 5:7 in the Amplified Bible says:

“Casting all your cares [all your anxieties, all your worries, and all your concerns, once and for all] on Him, for He cares about you [with deepest affection, and watches over you very carefully].”

The question is. . .who would you rather have watching over your circumstances. . .you or God?

Cares. . .anxieties. . .worries. . .concerns. . .all seem like the products of your circumstances.

It’s time for a spiritual transfer. . .your circumstances to God.

The last part of Mark 11:23 in the King James Version says:

“. . .he shall have whatsoever he saith.”

Second, don’t believe or ignore the fact that God is bigger than your circumstances.

When we’ve been struggling with a problem for a long time, there is a huge tendency to let the devil talk us into believing … we have to live with it.

There is an old saying. . .not sure who wrote it first. But it’s powerful.

“Don’t tell God you have a big problem. . .tell your problem you have a big God.”

Isaiah 55:8-9 in the Amplified Bible says:

“For My thoughts are not your thoughts, Nor are your ways My ways,” declares the Lord. “For as the heavens are higher than the earth, So are My ways higher than your ways And My thoughts higher than your thoughts.”

Too many times. . .we may find ourselves bringing God down to our level of thinking instead of raising ourselves up to His way of thinking and doing things.

When we’re dealing with difficult circumstances. . .when things aren’t going our way sometimes we ask “Why, God, Why?”

As we give our circumstances to God. . .we should be asking “What, God, what” are you trying to show us?

If we make the circumstances we’re dealing with bigger than our God. . .then we’ve just made a HUGE spiritual mistake. . .plus, we’ve destined ourselves to live with our current mess until. . .we decide to give it to Jesus.

Third, when you turn your circumstances over to God. . .you’re making it His problem not yours.

Philippians 4:6 in the Amplified Bible says:

“Do not be anxious or worried about anything, but in everything [every circumstance and situation] by prayer and petition with thanksgiving, continue to make your [specific] requests known to God.”

As we give our circumstances (cares, anxieties and worries) to Him. . .we will begin to feel an overwhelming release and peace. . .know that He’s got your problems.

Philippians 4:7 in The Living Bible says:

“If you do this, you will experience God’s peace, which is far more wonderful than the human mind can understand. His peace will keep your thoughts and your hearts quiet and at rest as you trust in Christ Jesus.”

When you give your circumstances to God. . .begin to Praise Him for handling what you previously couldn’t or didn’t handle.

Let God. . .Be God … in your life.

Now let’s talk about seven ways to rise about circumstances that may be holding you down or back from fulfilling. . .God’s divine destiny for you.

1.         God protects you against your circumstances.

Psalm 112:6 in The Living Bible says:

“Such a man will not be overthrown by evil circumstances. God’s constant care of him will make a deep impression on all who see it.”

The man this scripture is talking about. . .is one who is generous and fair.

When we treat others properly. . .when we are a channel of blessing. . .financial and otherwise. . .then God has our back. He will protect us against every evil circumstance the enemy throws our way.

No matter the circumstance. . .we will not be deceived, deluded, defeated or destroyed by whatever tactics the enemy chooses to use against us.

Charles Spurgeon, the great pastor and author, once said:

“If we cannot believe God when circumstances seem to be against us, we do not believe Him at all.”

Wow. . .that’s a powerful quote.

Our faith will never be stagnant. It must be growing and believing bigger with every problem we face … that is how we ultimately overcome.

As Albert Einstein once said:

‘We can’t solve our problems with the same thinking we used when we created them.”

2.         Where’s the best advice in dealing with your circumstances.

When confronted with a problem or difficult circumstance. . .most people, including believers. . .seek the wisdom of the world.

If the situation is one you face at work. . .there’s a tendency to talk with co-workers which more often than not. . .leads to commiseration.

If it’s a problem at home with your spouse or children. . .we tend to discuss it with our best friend. Sometimes, we will even talk with our Pastor, who unfortunately is not generally the first choice.

So the question is really this. . .where can we get the best advice on how to deal with our circumstances?

Numbers 9:8 in the Message Bible says:

“Moses said, “Give me some time; I’ll find out what God says in your circumstances.”

Give me some time.

We live in a fast-paced society that is short on patience. When we want something . . .

we want it now.

Even sometimes when we’re praying. . .if our answer doesn’t manifest immediately we begin to doubt the promises of God. This is a favorite tactic of the enemy. He knows that delays often birth doubts.

God does not delay. . .but the enemy likes to see if he can hinder the arrival of God’s answer to the circumstances, situations and problems that you are facing.

Daniel 10:12-14 in the New Living Translation says:

“Then he said, “Don’t be afraid, Daniel. Since the first day you began to pray for understanding and to humble yourself before your God, your request has been heard in heaven. I have come in answer to your prayer. But for twenty-one days the spirit prince of the kingdom of Persia blocked my way. Then Michael, one of the archangels, came to help me, and I left him there with the spirit prince of the kingdom of Persia. Now I am here to explain what will happen to your people in the future, for this vision concerns a time yet to come.”

You need to know God has heard your prayer . . . that your answer . . . your deliverance is on the way. Our answer may have been delayed but it is never denied.

3.         Your circumstances can change immediately.

Warren Wiersbe, the noted biblical author, said:

“The world changes - circumstances change, we change - but God's Word never changes.”

The one constant thing in our lives. . .is the Word of God. It never changes and neither does our Heavenly Father.

Malachi 3:6 in the Amplified Bible says:

“For I am the Lord—I do not change. That is why you are not already utterly destroyed, for my mercy endures forever.”

Neither God. . .nor His Word. . .will ever change.

Hebrews 13:8 in the King James Version says:

“Jesus Christ the same yesterday, and today, and forever.”

While God and the Word will never change. . .your circumstances can and will and it can come quickly.

1 Samuel 9:15-16 in the Message Bible says:

“The very day before, God had confided in Samuel, “This time tomorrow, I’m sending a man from the land of Benjamin to meet you. You’re to anoint him as prince over my people Israel. He will free my people from Philistine oppression. Yes, I know all about their hard circumstances. I’ve heard their cries for help.”

By this time tomorrow. . .God is bringing a change to the nation of Israel. The people had wanted a king. . .so God is giving them one.

Within twenty-four hours. . .Saul, of the tribe of Benjamin, met the prophet. In one day, he went from being a donkey herder to the King of Israel.

I’m confident Saul never saw himself as King but God did.

That’s why it’s important to allow God to direct the change in our lives.

4.         Circumstances will come. . .BUT GOD.

Psalm 34:19 in the Amplified Bible says:

“Many hardships and perplexing circumstances confront the righteous, But the Lord rescues him from them all.”

If you’re breathing on planet earth. . .if you’re a threat to the enemy. . .you will find yourself dealing with difficult circumstances from time to time. BUT GOD. . .

Watchman Nee, a Chinese pastor, author and martyr, once said:

“We should inquire once again as to what the life of faith is. It is one lived by believing God under any circumstance: "If he slay me," says Job, "yet would I trust in Him" (Job 13:15 Darby). That is faith.”

2 Thessalonians 3:16 in the Amplified Bible says:

“Now may the Lord of peace Himself grant you His peace at all times and in every way [that peace and spiritual well-being that comes to those who walk with Him, regardless of life’s circumstances]. The Lord be with you all.”

The peace of God removes the worry over any and all circumstances. The confidence in knowing that God has our backs is HUGE.

It’s also important for us to know that while our circumstances are temporary the Word of God is eternal.

Rick Warren, the author of The Purpose Driven Life, said:

“What happens outwardly in your life is not as important as what happens inside you. Your circumstances are temporary, but your character will last forever.”

5.         Be happy regardless of your circumstances.

Proverbs 15:15 in the New Living Translation says:

“For the despondent, every day brings trouble; for the happy heart, life is a continual feast.”

The Living Bible translation of Proverbs 15:15 says:

“When a man is gloomy, everything seems to go wrong; when he is cheerful, everything seems right!”

“But, Brother Harold, how can we be happy. . .cheerful when we dealing with such dire circumstances?”

First, God is on your side. He will never leave you, nor forsake you. . .in fact, He has a grip on you.

Second, remember He’s the only One with a guaranteed answer to whatever you’re facing.

Third, when we put our trust in Him and His Word. . .we get benefits.

James 5:11 in the Amplified Bible says:

“You know we call those blessed [happy, spiritually prosperous, favored by God] who were steadfast and endured [difficult circumstances]. . .”

Let me give you one other reason to be happy.

The middle verse in the Old Testament is 2 Chronicles 20:17. I don’t believe the placement of this verse was random. . .I believe God put it there for a purpose.

Check out the Amplified Bible translation of 2 Chronicles 20:17 which says:

“You need not fight in this battle; take your positions, stand and witness the salvation of the Lord who is with you, O Judah and Jerusalem. Do not fear or be dismayed; tomorrow go out against them, for the Lord is with you.’”

When it comes to dealing with your circumstances. . .that verse ought to make you happy.

6.         Circumstances don’t hinder your blessing flow.

No matter what you’re facing. . .how disturbing or distressing it may be. . .you gotta know that God will take care of it. . .you will be positioned for victory.

Philippians 1:14 in the Amplified Bible says:

“Because of my chains [seeing that I am doing well and that God is accomplishing great things], most of the brothers have renewed confidence in the Lord, and have far more courage to speak the word of God [concerning salvation] without fear [of the consequences, seeing that God can work His good in all circumstances].”

No need to fear your circumstances because God can work His good in all circumstances.

Did you catch that scripture says God can work His good in ALL.   I like that word . . . nothing left to chance. God will handle ALL your circumstances.

2 Corinthians 9:8 in the Amplified Bible says:

”And God is able to make all grace [every favor and earthly blessing] come in abundance to you, so that you may always [under all circumstances, regardless of the need] have complete sufficiency in everything [being completely self-sufficient in Him], and have an abundance for every good work and act of charity.”

I would strongly encourage you to personalize this verse.

”And God is able to make all grace [every favor and earthly blessing] come in abundance to <<Your Name>>, so that <<he/she>> may always [under all circumstances, regardless of the need] have complete sufficiency in everything [being completely self-sufficient in Him], and have an abundance for every good work and act of charity.”

The verse clearly states that God will give you every favor and earthly blessing in abundance. . .under whatever circumstance you may be facing.

No matter how bleak things may look at the moment. . .God will greatly and I do mean, greatly bless you.

7.         Praise God in every situation and circumstance.

Do you believe the Word says what God means it to say?

Do you believe that all 800,000 words in the Bible were placed in a divine order?

Do you believe that the Word gives you instructions and directions to guide you to the rich and satisfying life mentioned in John 10:10?

Do you believe that God is not a man that He should lie? (Numbers 23:19)

If your answer to these four questions is “yes” then you should be shouting as you read this last scripture in this teaching.

1 Thessalonians 5:18 in the Amplified Bible says:

“In every situation [no matter what the circumstances] be thankful and continually give thanks to God; for this is the will of God for you in Christ Jesus.”

Every situation. . .no matter what the circumstance. . .whether you see it or not. . .God will move supernaturally in your life. . .dealing with whatever you may be facing.

However, the key is to continually give thanks to God.

Yes, I mean even those times when it feels like you’re going through hell. . .Praise God for His Word, His power, protection, provision and promotion.

Like the song says.

Praise Him in the morning. . .praise Him at noontime. . .praise Him all the day long.

Dr. David Jeremiah said:

“No matter what our circumstance, we can find a reason to be thankful.”

As we move into the last half of 2018. . .it’s imperative that we allow God to deal with whatever circumstances we are or may have been facing.

Remember. . .

God is not moved by your circumstances. . .and neither should you be.