In today’s post, we look at how to demolish those strongholds that are holding us back from our healing.
I will define what strongholds are and how we develop them. Then I’ll speak on how I demolish destructive strongholds in 5 simple steps.
We learn through repetition. How many times do you find yourself singing along to your favourite song on the radio.
Chances are, you will have heard it many times, now all the words are hardwired into your system.
Unfortunately we can also repeat unhealthy or toxic thoughts, or strongholds, into our brains as well.
It’s as though they’re stuck on repeat; the rumination becomes 2nd nature as those thoughts become hardwired.
WHAT IS A STRONGHOLD?
A stronghold is anything that keeps us bound, anything which we may rely upon that seeks to destroy or hinder us somehow.
It is something which controls or dominates us.
We all have them, usually without realising. I’m not by any means referring to sin, but to thinking or behavioural patterns that often we default to.
Day in day out, Blind Bartimaeus sat by the wayside begging and existing, surviving whilst life passed him by.
“Ill always be a blind beggar…..I don’t get the happiness everyone else gets…..I’ll never work…..It’s not fair…..Things will never change…….I’ve been this way too long…..”
HOW TO DEMOLISH STRONGHOLDS:
Bartimaeus had a choice: to continue in his comfort zone, his strongholds and his beggar status or to let go of them and allow Jesus to change his world completely.
Throwing his cloak aside, he jumped to his feet and came to Jesus.
Healing didn’t land in his lap. He performed an action, he threw off his coat first, in order to receive. He Let go of those strongholds.
As I read this, I wonder what God is asking me to ‘throw aside?’ Are there strongholds obstructing my healing?
The weapons we fight with are not the weapons of the world. On the contrary, they have divine power to demolish strongholds.
2 Cor 10:4
Bartimaeus’ coat was his most valuable asset. Without it he had no means of survival since it gave him the license to beg. It was his security.
Casting off his garment shows his level of trust and faith in Jesus. He no longer needed his coat, what Jesus was about to do is far more valuable.
You and I may not have a physical coat to throw off, but we may have thought patterns which are stopping us from trusting God and dilute our faith.
Here are 5 steps which help me:
STEP 1 KNOW THE LOVE OF GOD
Before you demolish any strongholds, the first step is, in my opinion, to receive God’s love and know who we are in Him.
This causes us to operate from God’s strength and with His grace. I love that the name David means ‘beloved’. We need to know the love of God before we can knock down any giants.
Knowing the love of God produces an endurance for us to stay the course. See EXPERIENCE GOD’S LOVE: THE 1ST STEP IN HEALING
Without the love of God, we’re in our own strength.
STEP 2 IDENTIFY SECONDARY GAINS
In counselling we talk of Secondary Gains. These are all the advantages of having an illness.
Getting a lot of compassion from others which gives comfort for example. Unfortunately this can keep us bound.
In the early years, I relied on my mum to do my cleaning and shopping for me and I enjoyed her help.
Dependence on others can also be hindering.
For some, avoiding their responsabilities or making excuses to not serve in church can also easily become strongholds.
Can you think of any of your secondary gains? Is it time to ask God to help you in demolishing them?
STEP 3 KNOW YOUR IDENTITY
Bartemaeus was accustomed to the way his life was. He had no money, was probably hungry and used to living on handouts from the crowds.
His coat symbolises his beggar status and his disability. It represents his identity.
He was invisible, pitied and looked down upon. Bartimaeus didn’t know any different than life with a disability.
The longer I live with pain, the more I forget what life is like without it. It’s as though I can’t remember what being well is like. I wonder if you relate to this?
Take a read of ARE YOU CLOTHED IN CHRIST OR CLOTHED IN SICKNESS?
that we may have boldness in the day of judgment; because as He is, so are we in this world. 1 John 4:17
You and I are like Jesus.
Joseph Prince teaches that just as He is healthy, well-able and with sound mind, so are we. He does not have any illness or health condition whatsoever. This is our identity in Christ.
Sickness is part of the old man. When we were buried with Christ, all our illnesses were buried with Him.
When we arose again with Him, we became just like Him. Yes we may still sin, but all our sins are forgiven and God no longer sees them.
Therefore, if anyone is in Christ, the new creation has come: The old has gone, the new is here!
2 Cor 5:17
In the same way, we may still get sick, but all these sicknesses ‘are healed’ spiritually speaking, because we’re now in Christ.
This is why the Bible says that we’re already healed, past tense. It’s talking about are identity in Christ.
Seeing yourself in Christ means seeing yourself healed, even if your body is in pain or with symptoms. The key is to not look at your situation in the natural.
Knowing who we really are gives us the ability to demolish those strongholds that are helping us survive; we realise those thoughts are ‘not who we are’
STEP 4 REPLACE TOXIC THOUGHTS
Here are some of the strongholds I am partnering with God to demolish: ‘my life will never change….I’ve lost 20 years and missed out on life…..If only this happened when I was much older’
Each time I think these thoughts, it’s as though I’m fortifying sickness.
But the more I undo the conditioning by replacing the thoughts with more realistic ones and living ‘healed’, the more I increase my capacity to receive.
I’m loosening the wall’s fortification.
In other words, I’ve wired in the symptoms, the thoughts and the way of living. Now I must learn to unwire them.
If you’re unsure what your toxic thoughts are, one suggestion is to journal your thoughts at the end of each day. Do they align with the Bible?
Can you replace that thought with a verse instead? It might take some time. It takes at least 21 days to change a basic thought.
STEP 5 BE ACCOUNTABLE
Who can you share these strongholds with? Whenever you’re asking God to help you with something challenging, it’s always wise to ask someone to pray with you.
Who can ask you how you’re doing?
Someone who will encourage and speak life over you in these areas?
Imagine what it would be like, if The Holy Spirit’s grace and strength consumed us to walk out from this place of completeness.
It’s therefore not so much us consciously changing in our own strength, but as we focus on Jesus, we are changed.
We begin to step out of those things that bind us as we allow Him to help us demolish any strongholds within us.
If you feel this is too challenging, please remember that it really is one beautiful step at a time.
Have a great day
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