Listen to this devotional:
2 Corinthians 10:4-5 – For the weapons of our warfare are not carnal but mighty in God for pulling down strongholds, casting down arguments and every high thing that exalts itself against the knowledge of God, bringing every thought into captivity to the obedience of Christ. (NKJV)
Psalm 144:2 – He is my faithful love and my fortress, my stronghold and my deliverer. He is my shield, and I take refuge in Him; He subdues my people under me. (HCSB)
According to Answers.com, the biblical definition of a stronghold is as follows:
- The Greek word for stronghold, taken literally, means a fortress. It is used in the Bible also as a metaphor to represent things that are based only on human confidence or pride, as opposed to those that rely on God's input and guidance. Strongholds are walls or fortresses around beliefs and emotions to protect us from further pain. An important part of healing and transforming the deep wounds, requires divinely pulling down the strongholds.
I do have a stronghold in my life, an eating disorder. I eat when I'm hungry; I eat when I'm not hungry. I eat when I'm bored; I eat when I am busy. The satisfying foods are breads, cookies, and cakes; anything sweet is good. I have known I have this problem for a few years now. I struggle with it most times. Other times, I don't even think about it, although it is still present. A friend suggested that I ask God what need I am getting met by slipping into this stronghold. God showed me that I am trying to meet the need of acceptance and validation through food, rather than going to Him. I confess my action as sin, receive God's forgiveness, and ask Him to help me. Things go well for a while. Then, the stronghold rears its ugly head once again. I go through this cycle often.
Hebrews 10:14 – For by that one offering he forever made perfect those who are being made holy. (NLT)
I read this verse and was awed by the truth of it. Jesus died for me and He perfected me forever as He is making me holy. It is a process. He is working in my life so that I will depend on Him completely for deliverance from the strongholds in my life, and for the acceptance and validation that only He can give to satisfy my soul.
Hebrews 10:17 – Then He says, "I will never again remember their sins and lawless deeds." (NLT)
Sometimes I beat myself up for being pulled into that stronghold once again. But God says that He will never again remember my sins and lawless deeds. Wow! What a truth! He chooses not to remember my sins! That sunk deep into my soul when I read it. My heart rejoiced!
Are we depending on God to meet our needs, to be the protector and shield in our lives? Do we have strongholds in our lives that need to be broken? What need are we trying to fill in our lives that only God can fill? Let's ask God to reveal to us those things that make Him sad.
Psalm 139:23-24 – Search me, O God, and know my heart; test me and know my thoughts. Point out anything in me that offends you, and lead me along the path of everlasting life. (NLT)
Prayer: Lord Jesus, how we praise You for dying for us, for loving us, for accepting us, and for choosing to remember our sins no more. Thank You that You are making us holy. It is all of You, not of us at all. We can't break the strongholds in our lives by ourselves. Lord, show us where we make You sad, and lead us, Lord, we pray. Lead us to Yourself, for it is there that we will find release, rest, and restoration. You are our shield, our protector, our stronghold. Help us to lean hard into Your truths. We praise You for Your protection. Thank You. Amen.