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  • Shannon Bryant

Power to STAND!

Updated: May 16

It seems the battle is raging and there is an upsurging in the fiery furnace. Illness, marriage conflict, issues with children, discord, and division in the church, workplace drama, financial woes, battling discouragement and depression, etc. I know it’s hard and know that I’m encouraging myself as I emphatically exhort you to keep going even in the midst of opposition. Don’t allow the issues of life to snatch your enthusiasm and halt God's plan for you, your breakthrough, restoration and deeper communion with Him. Trials will come but let them deepen your pursuit of Him. Don't drift away. Go harder. Therein lies your power to stand.

Though the heat may be turned up, know that there is an equipping in righteousness and refining taking place in the furnace, and if we persevere and decide with all our hearts to keep moving, praising, worshipping, seeking, believing, and holding to His precious promises without compromise, God will cause us to triumph and we will have a greater revelation of WHO HE IS and who we are in Him.

When you make the decision to go hard after God you can expect opposition.

The Jews were very familiar with opposition when they made the decision to leave Babylon and return to Jerusalem to rebuild God's Temple. Soon after they built the altar and laid the Temple foundation opposition came. Things were going well and good and then here comes the enemy. Sound familiar? When you make the decision to go after God you can expect opposition.

The Jews had enemies who were opposed to the rebuilding of the Temple. The Samaritans attempted to disrupt, deceive, infiltrate and frustrate the rebuilding plans. There was also opposition from local residents that tried to discourage and frighten the people of Judah to keep them from rebuilding. Unfortunately, these attempts to halt the rebuilding of God’s Temple were successful. Fear and discouragement caused by their enemies stopped their moving forward. They let the opposition get the best of them and the project was halted for 16 years. I know, such a long time but God’s plan had not changed for them.

We too may have opposition from some likely or unlikely sources. Just as God’s people had people on the outside opposing them, they also had locals (people on the inside) attempting to bring their rebuilding to a grinding halt. Whether it's an outside influence or someone close to you, know that it was sent to frustrate, discourage, and infiltrate God’s plan for you.

The Apostle Paul reminds us and it’s very important that we keep in mind that we are not fighting against flesh and blood enemies (human opponents), but against evil rulers and authorities of the unseen world, against mighty powers in this dark world, and against evil spirits in heavenly places. (Ephesians 6:12) All is not how it appears. Remember the game show when the contestant had to guess what’s behind the door? The item behind the door is hidden. It’s like that with the enemy. We are not fighting our spouses, friends, family, co-workers, etc. Behind the door is the enemy. What's happening behind the scene is a setup to steal, kill and destroy. But through it all, we come out winners.

Be encouraged. God has not left us to battle alone. Listen, “But those who belong to God can be confident that He is the ultimate authority! He is far above ALL principality and power and might and dominion, and every name that is named, not only in this age but in the age to come.” (Ephesians 1:21) Hallelujah! His incomparable great power overrides ALL power of the enemy!

In this life, we will have tribulation. But take heart in this life we also have Jesus!

In this life, we will have tribulation. (John 16:33) But take heart in this life we also have Jesus and He knew more than anyone about opposition. From his birth, the betrayal of Judas, the devil tempting Him, rejection from the people of His own town, to the agony of the cross, and so much more. Jesus had extreme resistance but He overcame. He is our blueprint and we must set our hearts and have a holy and desperate determination to follow His example. That same power that enabled Christ to persevere in spite of who and what came against Him lives in us. It’s not us who live but Christ that lives in us clothing us with resurrection power on high to build, breakthrough, live, move, have our being and to not be shaken.

It’s no surprise that a move of God is always counteracted with resistance, in fact, it can be expected. 1 Peter 4:12-13 reads “Dear friends, don’t be surprised at the fiery trials you are going through as if something strange were happening to you. Instead, be very glad for these trials make you partners with Christ in His suffering, so that you will have the wonderful joy of seeing His glory when it is revealed to the world.”

Here lately it seems that fiery darts and arrows have been strategically aimed and firing at me simultaneously from so many directions. A seemingly long vicious ambush of one thing after the other. I’m sure we’ve all had these brutal wilderness seasons. In times like these, we must not focus on the fiery darts, the conflict, the illness, the betrayal, the discord, etc. We must keep our eyes on, imitate, depend and follow our Forerunner, Jesus. Because of the joy set before Him, He endured the cross. Though in this life we will have difficult seasons God promises to be with us ALL THE WAY! His glorious Holy Spirit WILL sustain us and carry us through!

1 Peter 5:8 warns, “Stay alert! Watch out for your enemy, the devil. He prowls around like a roaring lion, looking for someone to devour. Stand firm against him, and be strong in your faith. Remember that your family of believers all over the world are going through the same kind of suffering.” Apostle Paul admonishes us to remember our brothers and sisters everywhere and their suffering. I’m in awe of God’s divine perfect order of things. Catch this. A most powerful piece of our spiritual weaponry to fight the enemy is to remember all believers in prayer. “Praying always with all prayer and supplication in the Spirit, being watchful to this end with all perseverance and supplication (intercession) for all the saints.” (Ephesian 6:18) Wow! I don’t know about you but this encourages and blesses me. God does not miss a thing! He is sovereign over all and if we just take heed to His Word, stay alert, prayerful, surrendered, standing firm in the faith, He will undergird us and empower us to stand!

Here’s God’s blessing for His children after we’ve done all to stand in the midst of opposition; So, after you have suffered a little while, He will restore, support, and strengthen you, and He will place you on a firm foundation. All power to Him forever! Amen! (1 Peter 5:8-10)

A final word: be strong in the Lord and in His mighty power. Therefore, take up the whole armor of God, that you may be able to withstand in the evil day, and having done all, to stand. (Ephesians 6:10-18)

While the enemy is lurking and on the prowl, we must be watchful and on our knees.

We must stay armed, locked and loaded with every spiritual weapon infused and empowered by the Holy Spirit, wholeheartedly submitting to God, resisting the devil and he will flee.

While the enemy is lurking and on the prowl, we must remain steadfast, serious and watchful in our prayers on our knees. Prayer sets things in motion for the Lord to lift up the standard. When the enemy comes in like a raging flood the Lord will lift up a standard against him. (Isaiah 59:19) Not by might nor by power, but by My Spirit says the Lord of hosts. (Zechariah 4:6)

With the Holy Spirit in us, God’s armor on us, and Jesus’ blood covering us we are more than conquerors!

Let’s join our hearts, connect in faith and be determined to not allow opposition to get us stuck, fearful, doubtful, depressed, unable and unmotivated to move and align ourselves with God’s Word for His purpose and plan for our lives.

You may be under fire right now but if you are in Christ you are under the blood!

If you’ve lost your fight, I loudly admonish you to get your fight back! Get up! Keep abiding in Christ! It is there that you are clothed with power from on high! Keep believing God! You may be under fire right now but if you are in Christ you are also under the blood. You are not under or beneath the circumstance but above. God is with you and you are coming out! Coming out stronger and knowing greater depths of God’s exceeding power and greatness toward those who love Him! Coming out with more fire and God-given spiritual authority to keep fighting the good fight of faith!

No matter what it looks like know that you are not under or beneath the circumstance but above!

Keep building and laying the imperishable foundation of Jesus Christ. He is the Beginning and the End. Stone by stone build upon the Rock. Be kept and set ablaze by our Savior’s words, Upon this rock I will build My church, and all the powers of hell will not conquer it. (Matthew 16:18) Hallelujah!

Keep pressing! Keep praising! Keep seeking! Keep worshipping! Keep believing EVERY word from the mouth of God! Fight in the strength of the Lord and having done all, STAND!!!

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Shannon Bryant

shannonbryant.live

Email: shannonbryant25@aol.com

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