Praising God Through the Storm

Andrew Wommack

“Rejoice in the Lord always: and again I say REJOICE.”  –Philippians 4:4

The Effects of Praise

A life of praise is not only the most enjoyable way to live, it’s also one of the most powerful ways to change your life. It doesn’t only affect you, It also affects those around you, God, and even the devil!

While we can all agree that praising God is good, many only choose to do so when they feel like it. They think that praising God is only the response of a positive outcome. They allow their emotions and circumstances to lead them, which should NEVER be the case. Praise is not the inevitable byproduct that comes because everything is going right. It is the driving force!

We may not feel joyful, but Galatians 5:2 tells us that the fruit of the Spirit is joy! Therefore, if the Holy Spirit is dwelling inside you, you have joy. You may not feel it, but you can still choose to life up your hands and speak forth praise by faith. When we praise in the midst of our hardships, our problems shrink, helping us keep our focus where it needs to be–on God.

We will never be victors until we stop being victims. With the help of daily praise, you will get there!

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Hide The Word in Your Heart

“And Peter remembered the word of Jesus, which said unto him, Before the cock crow, thou shalt deny me thrice. And he went out, and wept bitterly.” Matthew 26:75

There are several Greek words used for “word.” The Greek word used here is RHEMA and it literally means, “a spoken word; an utterance, a saying, but specifically a spoken word appropriate for the situation.” It’s not the Bible lying on your coffee table that makes the enemy flee, but the Word of God hidden in your heart, activated by the power of the Holy Spirit, and spoken in the appropriate situation. It’s similar to what Jesus says in John 6:63, that “the words that I speak unto you, they are spirit and they are life.”

The words that we speak from the written Word of God are empowered by the Holy Spirit. The Word by itself doesn’t make us free. It is the Word we know and speak that will deliver us (Jn. 8:32).

Why is the Word so effective? Because it is the WORD of God. It has authority, because it is indeed the WORD of God. God’s Word supersedes all authority of the church, of reason, of intellect, and even of Satan. That’s why it is so effective.

In Luke, chapter four, when Jesus was tempted of the devil for forty days, it was the Word of God that Jesus used to defeat the enemy at His temptation.

Jesus constantly met His temptation by quoting from God’s Word as He repeatedly stated the phrase, “It is written.” Likewise, the Christian soldier must avail himself of God’s Word by placing it in his heart so that the Holy Spirit may bring it forth at the appropriate time to accomplish a complete and total victory.

awmi daily devotionals

Turn From Sin

"Now Jesus loved Martha, and her sister, and Lazarus." John 11:5

It is interesting to note that special mention is made of Jesus loving Martha. This is after the incident recorded in Luke 10:38-42 where Martha is caught up with serving instead of worshipping Jesus and her priorities are still not in order. Jesus was not rebuking Martha but rather exhorting her for her own profit. When the Lord deals with problem areas in our lives, it is always for our profit – not punishment and we should not take it as rejection. This is one way to discern God’s correction from the devil’s condemnation.

God convicts us of sin but He doesn’t condemn us. Conviction is solely for our profit with no malice while condemnation includes punishment. Satan is the one who condemns the Christian, but the Holy Spirit has given us the power to escape that condemnation. The way the Lord convicts a believer is through the inner ministry of the Holy Spirit. This is always done in a positive manner that encourages us to turn from sin rather than the negative way of condemning us for having committed the sin.

A Christian who still walks in condemnation is being condemned by the devil or is condemning himself. Only those who are living in the power of the Holy Spirit escape condemnation. Compare this to the law of gravity. Gravity is a law that never quits exerting its power, but it can be overcome. Through the laws of aerodynamics man can actually fly and send space ships beyond Earth’s gravity. But it takes power to do this. If the power is shut off, the law of gravity is still at work and will cause the vehicle to fall.

Likewise, the law of sin and death still exists. If a Christian shuts off the power of the Spirit of life and begins to walk in the power of his own flesh, Satan will use this law of sin and death to condemn him and ensure he crashes. It’s not God who condemns us.

awmi daily devotional

Flow With Righteousness, Peace And Joy

For the kingdom of God is not a matter of eating and drinking but of righteousness and peace and joy in the Holy Spirit. Romans 14:17

If we are supposed to seek first the kingdom of God every day (Matthew 6:33), then we should know what the kingdom of God is in the first place. I used to think that the kingdom of God was the mission fields and that to seek it meant doing missionary work.

Then, I realized that the kingdom of God was not something outside you flowing in—“the kingdom of God is not eating and drinking”, but something inside you flowing out—“righteousness and peace and joy in the Holy Spirit”.

So to seek first God’s kingdom means to make it a priority every day to have your inner man flowing with righteousness, peace and joy in the Holy Spirit.

Righteousness is not your own righteousness based on what you do. It is not good works. It is a gift from Jesus who is your righteousness. (Romans 5:17; 1 Corinthians 1:30) God wants you to be established in the truth that you are the righteousness of God in Christ. (2 Corinthians 5:21)

“Peace be with you” were the words that Jesus spoke to His disciples when He appeared before them after His resurrection. He also showed them His pierced hands and side. (John 20:19–20) God wants you to know that His Son’s finished work has given you peace. Your conscience can be at rest because your sin debt has been settled. You have peace with God and the peace of God.

Joy will come into your heart when you see Jesus in the scriptures, worship songs or anointed preaching. It is the same joy from the Holy Spirit which filled the disciples’ hearts when they saw Jesus, His hands and His side. (John 20:20)

So every day, make it a priority to see yourself righteous in Christ. Don’t be conscious of your sins. Instead, be conscious of your righteousness. And whether you are reading your Bible or listening to anointed preaching, see Jesus with His pierced hands and side, which speak of His finished work. See all your sins forgiven, and you will flow with peace and joy. When you do this, you are seeking the kingdom of God!

Thought For The Day – To seek God’s kingdom is to have your inner man flowing with righteousness, peace and joy in the Holy Spirit.

JPM Daily Grace Inspirations

Be Filled

"If you then, being evil, know how to give good gifts unto your children: how much more shall your heavenly Father give the Holy Spirit to them that ask Him?" Luke 11:13

The Holy Spirit is a gift (Acts 2:38). You cannot be good enough to earn the gift of the Holy Spirit, but you do have to ask. This is speaking of the baptism of the Holy Ghost, which is subsequent to the born-again experience.

The Holy Spirit resides in our spirits, and once He comes, He doesn’t leave (John 14:16). There is an initial filling when the Holy Ghost first comes. However, His control and influence over our souls and body does fluctuate proportionally to how well we have our minds renewed to His will (Rom. 12:2).

In that sense, we can be more full of the Holy Ghost than at other times, although in our spirits the presence and power of the Holy Spirit does not come and go. Therefore, even after we receive the baptism of the Holy Ghost, there will be times when our souls and bodies stray from the leadership of the Holy Spirit and we need, once again, to be filled with the Holy Spirit.

In Ephesians 5:18 believers are commanded to "be not drunk with wine…but be filled with the Spirit." Being filled with the Holy Spirit is in the present tense, making it a continual command for the believer. In the book of Acts, the same people who were filled with the Holy Spirit on the day of Pentecost were filled again. Most people don’t get drunk on just one drink.

Likewise, being filled with the Holy Spirit is not just a one-time experience. There is an initial filling of the Holy Spirit, but many subsequent fillings. Just as drunkenness can change a person’s personality and make him or her act totally different, so being filled with the Holy Spirit can make us act just like Jesus. Be filled with the Spirit today.

awmi devotional

Holy Ghost Teacher

The Jews therefore marveled, saying, “How is it that this man has learning,[d] when he has never studied?”  So Jesus answered them, “My teaching is not mine, but His who sent me…” John 7:15-16

Jesus received His wisdom and knowledge by direct revelation from the Spirit of God rather than by the teachings of man. Jesus had been learning, but not through man. The Holy Ghost was His teacher. Jesus had to be taught the things of God. This looks contrary to Colossians 2:3, which says that all the treasures of wisdom and knowledge are hidden in Jesus. If Jesus was God manifest in the flesh, why would He have to learn or be taught?

The harmony between these apparently opposite statements is that Jesus’ spirit man was 100% God and had all of the wisdom and understanding of God in it, but it was manifest in natural flesh. It wasn’t sinful flesh but it was flesh, nonetheless, and had to be educated. Jesus was not taught by man, but He was taught by the direct revelation of the Holy Spirit. The knowledge was within Him but it had to be drawn out.

At the new birth, a born-again man’s spirit "is renewed in knowledge after the image of him that created him" (Col. 3:10). "We have the mind of Christ" (1 Cor. 2:16), and "an unction from the Holy One, and ye know all things" (1 Jn. 2:20). All of these things are a reality in our spiritual man. However, just as Jesus had to be taught, so we must draw this wisdom and knowledge out of our spirits and renew our minds with it (Rom. 12:2). This is one of the main ministries of the Holy Spirit to the believer. Through the new birth, we have received the mind of Christ in our spirit man and are in the process of growing in wisdom by drawing this knowledge out of our spirits and renewing (or reprogramming) our minds. This wisdom has to be drawn out by faith, time spent in the Word, and prayer.

[d] John 7:15 Or this man knows his letters

awmi devotional

Spirit Power

“Much of today’s church relies more on a book the early church didn’t have, than the Holy Spirit they did.” ~Bill Johnson

Photo credit: thetruthunderfire.com

Have you received His Power (dunamis – dynamite, might, power, marvelous works)?

“Dunamis is not just any power. The word often refers to miraculous power, marvelous works, and can also refer to “moral power and excellence of soul.”
Most importantly, dunamis can refer to “inherent power, power residing in a thing by virtue of its nature, or which a person or thing exerts and puts forth.” –gotquestions.org

Before Jesus began His public ministry and before He performed any miracle, He was first anointed with the Holy Spirit.

Jesus reading from the scroll of the prophet Isaiah:

The Spirit of the Lord is upon Me, because He has anointed Me to proclaim good news to the poor.
He has sent Me to proclaim liberty to the captives and recovering of sight to the blind,
to set at liberty those who are oppressed, to proclaim the year of the Lord’s favor.”

As mentioned in a previous post, an anointment is an appointment to an office.

If Jesus couldn’t, or wouldn’t, operate independently of the Holy Spirit, then neither should we. It’s foolish to believe that we can be effective without the power of the Holy Spirit confirming the preaching of God’s Word.

This fact can’t be argued by anyone who truly believes the Bible is God’s Word as the Scriptures are replete with proof that it is not by [your] might, nor by [your] power, but by My Spirit, says the LORD of hosts.

“In John 20:28, Thomas confessed Jesus as his Lord and God. That made him “saved” according to Romans 10:9-10.

Yet, the Lord told Thomas and all the disciples to tarry in Jerusalem until they received the power of the Holy Spirit (Acts 1:4). The reason Jesus told them to wait on the baptism of the Holy Spirit was because they didn’t have it yet. Look what happened to the disciples once they received that power. They were changed men.

Jesus speaking in Acts 1:8,

“But you shall receive power when the Holy Spirit has come upon you; and you shall be witnesses to Me in Jerusalem, and in all Judea and Samaria, and to the end of the earth.”

After the Day of Pentecost, when the Holy Spirit came upon Jesus’ disciples, they were powerful. They faced persecution and death fearlessly.

What made the difference?

By Jesus’ own words, it was the baptism of the Holy Spirit.” teaching article

 

This Holy Spirit, this dunamis of God’s magnificent power that raised His Son from the dead resides in all born-again believers who have received the Holy Spirit!

Oh Joy

[Father], You make known to me the path of life; in Your presence there is fullness of joy; at your right hand are pleasures forevermore. Ps 16

Don’t run from tests and hardships, brothers and sisters. As difficult as they are, you will ultimately find joy in them; if you embrace them, your faith will blossom under pressure and teach you true patience as you endure. And true patience brought on by endurance will equip you to complete the long journey and cross the finish line—mature, complete, and wanting nothing. James 1

God is not the author of our troubles.

No one who is tempted should ever be confused and say that God is testing him. The One who created us is free from evil and can’t be tempted, so He doesn’t tempt anyone.

God does not put sin on us; neither does He put sickness, or lack (peace, joy, patience, self-control etc.) on us.

Christ Jesus bore our curse for us, so that we might bear His blessings. The greatest and most mind boggling blessing of all is His Holy Spirit taking up residence inside of us.

Christ in you…Christ in me, the hope of glory!

God only has good and perfect gifts for His children.

The carnal believer reads this and assumes you’re saying believers will be free from distress, despair, discouragement, (problems). It’s one thing to experience difficulties (everyone will); it’s quite another to  believe that God is the one putting and refusing to remove difficulties from us. As God told Paul three times before he finally understood it, allow His grace to be sufficient in overcoming.

God is not the author of our problems.

Jesus tells us clearly, “These things I have spoken to you, that in Me you may have peace. In the world you will have tribulation; but be of good cheer, I have overcome the world.”

A careful read shows that we may/may not have peace, depending on our focus/perspective. However we will have tribulation – no exceptions.

The king shall have joy in Your strength, O Lord; And in Your salvation how greatly shall he rejoice!

Now may the God of hope fill you with all joy and peace in believing, that you may abound in hope by the power of the Holy Spirit.

About Persecution

 “But when they persecute you in this city, flee ye into another: for verily I say unto you, Ye shall not have gone over the cities of Israel, till the Son of man be come.” [MATTHEW 10:16-26]

Persecution is an inevitable part of the Christian life. Persecution is from Satan and is designed to uproot God’s Word in our lives by taking our eyes off Jesus. We should not think it is strange to be persecuted. “All that will live godly in Christ Jesus shall suffer persecution” (2 Tim. 3:12). We can actually rejoice because we are being persecuted, for Jesus’ sake, knowing that the Lord will be with us in the midst of the persecution and that there will be more than ample reward when we stand before Him (Heb. 11:26).

Persecution is an indication that the ones doing the persecuting are under conviction. They realize that they are not living what your words or actions are advocating and so, in defense of self, they attack the ones whom they perceive to be the source of their conviction. If this is understood, it makes persecution much easier to take. They aren’t just mad at you; they are convicted. When the Gospel is presented in the power of the Holy Spirit, there will always be either a revival or a riot, but not indifference.

There are many forms of persecution. Having your life threatened because of your faith in Jesus is one way you can be persecuted, but it is not the most damaging. History shows that the Church has always flourished under persecution with increased numbers and zeal. During intense, life-threatening persecution, people’s priorities get straightened out and the Lord assumes His rightful place. This always works for our good, regardless of what our outward circumstances might be. Remember it is not you that they are persecuting, but rather Christ in you.

awmi Devotional

The Promise of the Father

The Promise of the Father – Joseph Prince

“But you shall receive power when the Holy Spirit has come upon you; and you shall be witnesses to Me in Jerusalem, and in all Judea and Samaria, and to the end of the earth.” Acts 1:8

Before Jesus went back to heaven, He told His disciples to “wait for the Promise of the Father”. (Acts 1:4) There are thousands of promises in the Bible, so which promise was He referring to?

The early church knew which promise Jesus was referring to because He had told His disciples, “Do not leave Jerusalem, but wait for the Promise of the Father, which you have heard Me speak about. For John truly baptized with water, but you shall be baptized with the Holy Spirit not many days from now.” (Acts 1:4–5) Jesus was referring to the baptism in the Holy Spirit with speaking in tongues. (Acts 2:1–4)

Jesus wants you to know the value of the Promise of the Father because He said, “You shall receive power when the Holy Spirit has come upon you; and you shall be witnesses to Me…” He did not say, “You shall do witnessing,” but “You shall be witnesses”. In other words, your very person will be a witness to Him!

This is because the power you receive when you are baptized in the Holy Spirit is the same power that so anointed Peter that the sick were laid on the streets for his shadow to fall on them and heal them. (Acts 5:15) Even handkerchiefs and aprons from Paul’s body were so saturated with the anointing of the Spirit that when they touched the sick, people witnessed diseases and evil spirits leaving the sick! (Acts 19:12)

That same power caused a Holy Spirit-baptized church member, who prayed in tongues, to experience God’s healing power when he laid hands on his mother who was in an advanced stage of cancer. And because she was healed, she became a witness of the love and power of God to her friends and unbelieving relatives.

Beloved, when you are baptized in the Holy Spirit, you will be a witness to others that no problem, trial, disease or sickness is a match for the power of the Spirit in you!

Thought For The Day: Your very person will be a witness to Jesus when you are baptized with the Holy Spirit.