Monday Spot (2 October 2017)

Major Karen Smith was our leader for both meetings at Chatham yesterday, taking as her themes parts 2 and 3 of her series on Spiritual Warfare (for Part 1 see Monday Spot on 11 September)

 Major Karen Smith

‘How lovely on the mountains’ was the song chosen to start the worship and to introduce the Corporate Declaration, of ‘The joy of the Lord is my strength’, based on Nehemiah 8:10 and prayer time. New prayer initiatives were outlined by Lyn Arter and Nigel Day.

What’s your favourite Bible passage?  Members of the congregation were asked to decide and tell the person next to them. Scripture chosen as the basis of the preaching was from 2 Corinthians 10:3-5 (The Message version) and the congregation joined in ‘Be still, for the presence of the Lord…..’.

The part of the meeting set aside for the children began with the contribution from the Singing Company (children’s choir), who sang ‘I stand amazed’, and continued as Major Karen asked them how they fought their battles. As an illustration she spoke of how the Old Testament kings examined the texture and colour of liver (yes, liver!) in order to decide whether to go into battle. The children were not impressed with the sample of liver in the box!!

  

The song ‘I just wanna praise you, yeh, yeh ,yeh’ brought this part of the meeting to an energetic end.

The contribution from the Songsters (This Kingdom) prepared the way for Major Karen’s message (Shattering strongholds!) in which she said (summarised):

Today we are looking at ‘shattered strongholds’. Our spiritual weapons are mighty ‘through  God’ (scripture) but it is not these that win our battles for us nor is it us ourselves, it is ‘through God’. We cannot win by ourselves because we are weak. We often make mistakes but, despite these, we can win through God. He puts his words into our mouths and this is the way to shatter strongholds, the Word of God because it holds all truth.

Ezekiel was told by God to ‘eat the scrolls’ (scripture). To eat the Word. They tasted like honey and gave him sweet words, even in confrontation. God is all about love and justice. With the Word of God within us we will be able to win our battles with the enemy.

We, of course, have to participate and ‘eat the Word’ ourselves thus taking in what scripture says. We have to chew and swallow it and get everything we can from it.  Meditation on it is vital to allow us to listen to what it says to us.

Finally, scripture says ‘Be strong in the Lord’.  For us to achieve this we must be filled with the Holy Spirit. This will enable us to live good Christian lives. We must submit to God and resist the devil to allow this to take place in our lives.  Recognizing God in this manner is the only way to win our battles with the enemy.

So, what are the strongholds we need to shatter in our own lives? Only you will know the secrets of your heart so it is only you that can deal with them. You can only do this through Jesus Christ. The Word of God tells us that the only way is through intercession and prayer. We must take the Word of God into our hearts because it will shatter the strongholds. Let’s use our weapons!

The song ‘Seek ye first the Kingdom of God’ concluded the worship.

In the evening our final look at Spiritual Warfare (Changing mind sets) began with the upbeat song ‘I dare to be different’ and the same Corporate Declaration as in the morning (The joy of the Lord is my strength).

Continuing with ‘Give thanks to the Lord’, prayer and scripture from 2 Corinthians 10:3-5 (as in the morning but this time from the New International version) followed by testimony and a solo (I cannot tell….) by Murray Smith, the Band brought ‘Abends’ and the Songsters offered ‘Grace Alone’.

In her message Major Karen said (summarised):

This morning we were discussing shattering strongholds and this evening we shall explore changing mindsets. First of all we need to be obedient to Christ. If not we won’t be able to shatter those strongholds let alone change our mindset. A quotation I like is ‘change your thought and change the world’.  It is paramount that we experience the taking captive of the thought of obedience.

In battle, when challenging defences the first target is the outer walls as we seek to break them down. Paul says that this is only achieved by divine power. Having destroyed the walls we need to root out the pockets of resistance that still exist within our castle. God will honour this too. Our thinking is most important so we must examine and understand it otherwise our Christian relationships will need to be rebuilt. We won’t remain true if we fail at this step.

It is one thing to bring people to Christ but quite another to keep them if there is not some action to do so. Discipling is a most important factor. We must, however, want to be healed of our sin. Some people don’t want this because they can indulge themselves and gain momentary enjoyment.

God does not need any human resource. He speaks and it is done. This is the divine power which can defeat all our bad habits and set us free.  He can make us whole again.

We must learn what God wants of us or the job may have to be done again. Many fail at this point. Obedience to God is of the utmost importance because it acknowledges the lordship of Christ.

God knows our thoughts and if they are not in obedience to Christ we will be back where we started so we must have control over our thoughts so that they are productive in a positive way. Think about what you are thinking about. Change your mindset by bringing your thoughts into the captivity of Jesus Christ.

The songs ‘Give me a holy life’ and The day thou gavest, Lord, is ended’ brought the day to a close.

It has been our joy this weekend to congratulate two couples, David and Margaret Sutton and Allan and Jean Jones, on the occasion of their Golden Wedding anniversaries (50 years). Also Major Alma Brown has reached the grand age of 85. May God’s richest blessing be with them all.

Thanks you once again for taking the time to read our website. We hope you find it interesting. God bless you and have a great week.

 

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