Hey guys. Are you going through adversity or anxiety or fear or depression right now? If so, stay tuned because this session is for you.
How do I bring my faith to work? How do I tap into the power of God in my work life call? Why am I going through this adversity? Is God mad at me? I'm Os Hillman and I've been helping leaders like you answer these questions and more for over 30 years. That's what this podcast is all about. Let's learn and grow together. Welcome to TGIF Today God is First.
And welcome to our podcast this week. You know today we're going to be talking about adversity and overcoming hindrances to our life. And it's a topic that I teach a lot about because I went through some major adversities back in 1994 that really changed my life. And so if you find yourself in that place, this session is for you. You know, I've been teaching this session overcoming hindrances to fulfill your destiny for many years. Because I feel like I'm an authority on this topic. And so today's session is a teaching that I did a few weeks ago for a nightly meeting that I did on overcoming hindrances. And you know, it's really tied to what I went through in 1994, where I had major losses in my life. I lost over a half a million dollars. I had my wife leave me after going through extensive counseling. I had 80% of my business disappear within a few weeks when a client stuck me for $140,000. And then my vice president left me and took my second largest account in my ad agency. And this ushered me into a seven year season of adversity. And man I thought life was over.
But you know, two years into that adversity I met Gunnar Olson, the founder of the International Christian Chamber of Commerce. And in our first meeting, he listened to my story and he said, "Os, you have a Joseph calling on your life." And I said, "What is a Joseph calling?" And so he explained it to me. And that would ultimately lead to a relationship that's been over 25 years now. I just talked with him last week and he's been a spiritual mentor to me and father in the marketplace for me. And so this session will help you understand some of the dynamics that we can go through that can hinder us from fulfilling our destiny. And over that time, here now over almost 30 years, I've discovered many of the things that cause my adversity and now I'm able to help many others. So I hope that you'll find this session helpful to you. So let's go ahead and begin the teaching.
I was teaching in Scotland a number of years ago, and someone came up to me after going through this session that I'm about to share with you and said, "I just realized something. You must become a free agent before you can become a change agent." And I said, "Well, that's very true. Both God and Satan want you dead but each for different reasons." In second Corinthians four, Paul says, "For we who live are always delivered to death for Jesus's sake that the life of Jesus also may be manifested in our mortal flesh so then death is working in us but life in you." And then we see in first Peter five, "Be sober, be vigilant, because your adversary the devil walks about like a roaring lion seeking whom he may devour." And so Satan wants to kill your destiny. I once heard a mentor of mine say, "Dead men can't have stress." And I said, "Well, that's kind of obvious isn't it. If he can't get out of the coffin he's certainly not going to have stress." In Romans six, it says, "Likewise you also recon yourselves to be dead indeed to sin but alive to God in Christ Jesus." I once had a mentor say to me, "The only thing wrong with you Os is that you're not dead yet. As soon as you let your flesh die, you will be free. So I suggest you die quietly."
What happens at spiritual birth? Well, we all know that our human existence is made up of spirit, soul, and body. And when we become born again, our spirits instantly become 100% holy by the power of the holy spirit and God's work in our life. But our mind and will and emotions, which reside in our soul, they don't get redeemed completely in the sense that we don't change immediately. It's a process of sanctification. And that sanctification will go on until we die. And then of course we have the physical body. But we relate to God through our spirit. First Thessalonians 5:23 says, "Now may the God of peace himself sanctify you entirely and may your spirit and soul and body be preserved complete without blame at the coming of the lord Jesus Christ." So that's where we get spirit, soul, and body. "For our struggle is not against flesh and blood, but against the rulers, against the authorities, against the powers of this dark world and against the spiritual forces of evil in heavenly realms. We live in a war zone, and the prize that Satan wants is our heart."
You know, years ago I read the fictional story of Screwtape by C.S. Lewis. One of his great works. It's about a demon coaching an underling demon. And he says to that demon, "I wonder if you should ask me whether it is a essential to keep the patient in ignorance of your own existence. That question at least for the present phase of the struggle has been answered for us by the high command. Our policy for the moment is to conceal ourselves." C.S. Lewis once said, "There are two mistakes the church makes when dealing with the devil. To blame everything on him or to blame nothing on him." Here's an amazing statistic. 24% of the general population believe that Satan is real and 52% of Christians believe Satan is real, which means 48% of them don't believe he's real. When you're deceived you don't know you are deceived. Satan's strategy is to kill. Jesus and the dragon stood before the woman who was ready to give birth to devour her child as soon as it was born. So Satan tried to kill Jesus at birth.
Now what are Satan's three greatest lies to human beings? These are common to every person. Every one of us have been tempted by these statements. You are powerless over your circumstances. You are a victim of an unjust God who left you here to suffer. Just think about it. Have you ever thought those thoughts, that you're powerless over your circumstances or that you're a victim of an unjust God who doesn't love you, who left you hear to suffer and deal with this stuff all by yourself? If you're honest, you've probably felt that way at one time or another. We blame God for evil. In Mark 14:27 it says, "Jesus told him, 'You're all going to feel that your world is falling apart and it's my fault.'" He was saying that to the disciples. The story of your life is a story of the long and brutal assault on your heart by the one who knows what you could become and he fears it. That is the one thing Satan fears is that you're going to really know the truth because the truth shall make you free. "For I am poor and needy and my heart is wounded within me," said the psalmist in psalm 109.
You see, Satan, that word Satan means opposer. And some of the characteristics of Satan are found throughout the scripture. He's an angel of light, he seeks to kill and destroy, he's an accuser. He deceives and lies. He wars against those who obey. He's a lion, a devourer to kill. He blinds unbelievers. So we need to know our enemy and how he works against us. Finally, be strong in the lord and his mighty power. Put on the full armor of God so that you can take your stand against the devil's schemes. For our struggle is not against flesh and blood, but against the rulers, against the authorities, against the powers of this dark world and against the spiritual forces of evil and the heavenly realms. Therefore put on the full armor of God so that when the day of evil comes, you may be able to stand your ground and after you've done everything to stand. For this purpose the sun of God was manifested that he might destroy the works of the devil. You see, that was another reason Jesus came to earth, was to destroy the works of the devil.
You know I'm often asked by people about why do we go through adversity? And I believe there are four core reasons we will go through adversity. The first one is a consequence of the call. Joseph went through his adversity because of a consequence of the call. It wasn't because of any sin that he did. He was a typical teenage boy that might have been a little bit narcissistic. But it wasn't because of a major sin. And God used that to save an entire people. The second reason we can go through adversity is sin. Gehazi sinned against his employer Elisha, and as a result he was struck with leprosy because he wanted to get money from the general that was healed by Elisha. And so God judged his sin and if we have any open doors in our life then God will judge those sins. A third reason we can go through is sonship. And sonship means that God's going to treat us as sons and daughters, which means there are times that he needs to reprove us and to really correct us in order that we fulfill the purpose and destiny has over our life.
A fourth reason we can go through adversity is spiritual warfare. As I've said earlier, John 10:10 says, "Satan wants to steal, kill and destroy from your life. But Jesus wants to give you life." And so there's a war on earth vying for our heart. And so our job is to understand what reason we might be going through adversity and it could be a combination of these. But ask the lord and show him, what is the root. Now Jesus had no sin in his life and when he said this verse out of John 14, it references the fact that he had no sin so he would never go through adversity because of sin. He says to the disciples, "Hereafter, I'll not talk much with you for the prince of this world cometh and that nothing in me." Basically that says, there's nothing in him that he has a right to. There was no sin. There was no open door in his life. He had no entry to Jesus's life due to his sinless life. Now, therefore my primary hindrance is to becoming a Christian who transforms your workplace. And I've talked about this in the past and that is an un-biblical view of work in ministry. We need to understand the holy calling that is upon us. Colossians 3:23 says, "Whatever you do, do unto the lord. It's the lord Christ you are serving."
And then there's a Greek versus Hebraic view of God. If we fall to the Greek influence in our relationship with God, that can hinder us and then the religious sprit and generational strongholds. And we're going to talk about the ladder three of these hindrances tonight. I've talked over the years about this sacred secular and this dichotomy of calling. If there's one statement I hate hearing it's, I'm in full-time ministry. Well, we're all in full-time ministry. We just get our checks different places. And that's not a higher calling. We need to define our ministry as anything that we're doing that's not against the will of God as a holy calling. So whatever you do, do unto the lord. It tells us in Colossians 3:23. Hindrance number two deals more with the influence of the Greek philosophers versus the Hebraic roots. There's a prophetic verse in Zechariah 9:13, "For I have bent Judah my bow, fitted the bow with Ephraim and raised up your sons, O Zion, against your sons. O Greece made you like the sword of a mighty man." And so this is a prophetic verse about the conflict between the Hebraic heart set versus the Greek mindset. Hebraic deals with the heart and it's active and appeals to the heart. Whereas the Greek mindset is more cognitive and appeals to the intellect.
The Greek philosophers understood the difference between Greek and Hebraic roots. So you see Greeks acquired wisdom by reason and analysis and Hebrews acquired wisdom by obedience. Psalm 111:10 says, "The fear of the lord is the beginning of wisdom in the early church." Understood that knowledge was not what changed the world. It was the power of God working through people. Paul said, "My message in my preaching were not with wise and persuasive words, but with a demonstration of the spirit's power so that your faith might not rest on men's wisdom, but on God's power." Paul wrote that explaining that the reason he was so effective was it had nothing to do with his knowledge and his persuasive oratory skills, but it was because of the power of God working though him. Now there's two systems that you and I could be relating to God through and one of them would be the Hebraic system. And the Hebraic system is a process focus. Obedience is a priority and relationships are a priority and this yields transparency and love. And it produces mature believers. Whereas the Greek mindset is more cognitive and has more of a program focus. Information is a priority with controlled groups and this ends up being more service and activity based in our relationship toward God. And this ultimately produces shallow believers.
Another hindrance is the religious spirit. See, Peter Wagner wrote, Freedom From the Religious Spirit. And in that book he defines the religious spirit as an agent of Satan assigned to prevent change and maintain the status quo by using religious devices. And of course that's what Jesus ran into in his ministry was the Pharisees. And that's what made him the angriest. "Woe to you, teachers of the law and Pharisees, you hypocrites. You give a tenth of your spices, mint, dill, and cumin, but you have neglected the more important matters of the law. Justice, mercy, and faithfulness."
So the spirit of religion says I must do something to be acceptable by God. It puts people under the yoke of bondage and legalism. Religion divides us into sacred secular mentality. And religion says only overt spiritual activity is acceptable to God. If you remember the chariots of fire, the runner from Scotland, Eric Little. He told his sister, "When I run, I feel his pleasure." Well his sister thought running was a secular idea and he needed to be on the mission field. But in reality Eric was a more spiritual person. Another spirit of religion comment would be bible study at work is not necessary. I go to church on Sunday. That would be a statement that comes from a religious spirit. Why do I need to participate in a kingdom initiative like that? Religion versus relationship looks like this. I had this vision of this diagram years ago that I had an illustrator make up. And so many of us have grown up thinking that well if I do all these things on the right, prayer and devotions and church attendance and bible study and giving money and witnessing and perform and be a church volunteer, then I'll earn God's love and acceptance and favor.
But the truth is it's the exact opposite. When we love God, and when we know and understand the acceptance of God, and know his favor, the byproduct of that is that we want to engage in prayer, we want to do devotions, we want to study our bible, we want to be witnesses as salt and light to our community. These become byproducts of a healthy relationship with God. The religious spirit motivates believers to live out their faith in legalistic and rigid ways. And this is especially evident in the south.
Now let's spend the balance of our time talking about spiritual warfare strongholds and childhood wounds. I want you to meet John tonight. He had a need for recognition from performance. Things like civic projects and sports and business success. He had an emphasis on building financial security and so he became a workaholic. He lacked emotional intimacy in his marriage and with other people, and he had an activity based relationship towards God very Greek based. And he exhibited symptoms of over controlling people and circumstances. Well, that person was me. I came out of a family of three generations of business owners and our generation stronghold was insecurity and fear that resulted in motivations to control people and circumstances around us. And the bible says in second Corinthians 10:5, "The weapons we fight with are not the weapons of the world. On the contrary, they have divine power to demolish strongholds. We demolish arguments and every pretension that sets itself up against the knowledge of God. We take captive every thought to make it obedient to Christ."
So a stronghold can come into our lives because we have a need and we don't understand how to meet that need without allowing ourselves to be opened up to a stronghold. The opposite of stronghold is exhibited in Ephesians 3:17. "And I pray that you being rooted and established in love, may have power together with all the saints to grasp how wide and long and high and deep is the love of Christ and to know this love that surpasses knowledge, that you may be filled to the measure of all the fullness of God." So you and I were created with seven basic needs. We have a need for dignity and authority, for blessing, and for vision and security, for purpose and meaning and freedom and boundaries, and intimate love and companionship. These are seen in Genesis one and two. They're not listed like this, but they're evidenced in how God related to Adam and Eve. Adam and Eve were born with all of these needs and God met those needs for them.
But whenever we seek to meet one or more of these basic needs outside God, we have set the stage for the development of a generational stronghold. Satan convinced Eve to believe God was holding out on her and he would not meet her needs so she chose to meet her own need. Let's look at some examples of generational strongholds. We see deceit and lying in Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob. We see control with Laban, Rebecca, Jacob, and King Saul. We see a sexual stronghold in David, Rahab, Bathsheba, Absalom, Abner, and Solomon. In fact, it would be a pretty good bet that David was probably an illegitimate son. You see, he says in Psalm 51 that I was conceived in iniquity. And then when you look at the fact that his father didn't even consider him when the prophet Samuel came to look at his sons as potential candidates to be the next king. We can surmise from that that perhaps David, not only was he the littlest and smallest, maybe that he was conceived in iniquity.
Well, I learned more about this stronghold concept when a mentor of mine who created this workbook that we later published for him. He said, "There's no problem with you Os. You just have a stronghold of insecurity and fear." And I said, "You can't prove that." And he says, "Oh, I think I can." And so, he had me take this little self-assessment tool and rank each one of these symptoms from one to 10 and then added the total and took the average. So that, as you can see in the example on the top right, deceit ... The attributes were six, two, one, nine, and seven for different characteristics. You add those numbers up and divide by six, or five I guess it is, you get the average number of five. So you would do that with each one of these strongholds. So when I did it, I did control, and I would rank those and that became the highest one. And then fear and insecurity, that also was a high one at the time.
So he took me through a process of prayer and confession in order to deal with those strongholds. We eventually published a book about this, a workbook called Demolishing Strongholds. We only had the PDF version of that online. But you can find it on our website at tgifbookstore.com
. It's a wonderful resource and I've used it to counsel many people over the years. So spiritual strongholds work at the subconscious level. Their influence is often unseen until there is a problem. Strongholds are designed to keep us from experiencing God's love and they're often generational as I have said. All strongholds that are built in our lives are a result of seeking to meet one or more of these needs apart from God's will for us.
So here's how a stronghold develops. Satan inspires a thought into my mind subconsciously. We're not even conscious of it. Which appeals to my natural tendencies to meet needs. We entertain these thoughts and it brings on emotions. And then we give in to emotions and this eventually leads to some sort of action. And continual participation in this behavior causes me to develop a habit. And once a habit's developed a stronghold is built by that spirit. Now, strongholds oppress versus possess. They control, dictate, and influence our attitudes and behavior. Remember when Jesus was speaking to Peter. He said, "Peter, Satan has wanted to sift you." And he was telling him that Satan was impacting his thought life. So strongholds oppress and discourage us and affect how we view or react to situations, circumstances, or people.
I was once in Singapore and a woman came up to me after I'd spoken on this topic and she said, "Oh, would you go to lunch with me and my friend?" And I had lunch available so I went with them and she was very, very aggressive and I could see some things that were coming through her that I picked up on. So when we were at lunch I said, "Tell me about your father. What kind of relationship do you have with your father?" And she said, "Well, why in the world would you want to ask me that? I don't want to talk about that. I want to talk about something else." And I said, "Well just humor me. Just tell me how your relationship is with your dad." And she said, "Oh, it's not good. He says I'll never amount to anything and he says I'm fat and he just doesn't have good things to say about me." And I said, "Well, you have a spirit of rejection over your life and part of the reason that you're very, very aggressive is because you're seeking to get approval and you have to be successful at all costs because one of the vows that you've made is that you're going to prove your value to your father by being successful. And so you're a slave to what your father has said about you. So you need to pray. We need to break that over you."
And we did. She began to cry as I began to share that with her. And we broke that over her that day at lunch and her whole countenance changed. I also believe that strongholds are a lot like wearing sunglasses. Let's say that you're born with sunglasses on and you go through life wearing those sunglasses and one day it's cloudy and a man says, "Did you know that if you took those sunglasses off you'd be able to see much clearer?" And so you take those sunglasses off and you say, "Oh my gosh, look how bright it is out here." Well that's the way strongholds are. You don't really know that you're operating in that until symptoms begin to show up. So what we need to do is understand where the entry points of those strongholds came in. And one of the resources that we found helpful in addition to our book on demolishing strongholds is a book called Operating In the Courts of Heaven, by Robert Henderson. This book is a great book to help you understand how the devil operates from a legal basis and how we need to do business in heaven at the legal court in heaven as he is our defender.
Now, we need to look at the role shame plays in our life. Shame says I am a failure or a mistake, whereas guilt says I made a mistake, but I am not a mistake. We need to understand the difference and walk in Godly guilt versus shame. But we have renounced the hidden things of shame, not walking in craftiness nor handling the word of God deceitfully, but by manifestation of the truth commending ourselves to every good man's conscience in the sight of God.
So I want to pause for a moment and say that if you have any questions or comments, please enter them in the chat area or the Q&A area. Just tell me what you think. Tell me what God's speaking to you about this area in your life. And if you have any questions I'd love to take those.
I want to spend the last few minutes talking about arrested development. And this is out of a book called Broken Children, Grown Up Pain, by Dr. Paul Hegstrom. Dr. Hegstrom passed away last year. He was a good friend of mine. And I actually went through counseling with him years ago. He says, "When a wounded childhood frees his emotional maturity to within two years of a wound, the adult lives as a child emotionally." That's what it means to be arrested in your development. In other words, somebody might say, "Well he's acting like a child." Well, that might be really true. Because your emotional state in life, even as an adult, you might be living as a 12 year old emotionally because you had a trauma happen in your life that froze you emotionally. So we need to understand that arrested development is caused by the wounds of childhood and amplifies or magnifies our sin nature. The deeper the wounds, the more we act selfishly and childishly. And when we have too much childhood trauma, we're hindered in our ability to develop genuine healthy relationships with our creator and others close to us.
We can't readily reach out or accept others because our wounds have made us unteachable. Unable to trust and afraid of truth. Now I believe that Michael Jackson was arrested in his development. Many people felt that there was a sexual issue with him because he liked to hang out with kids. I think that he was arrested in his development and was probably emotionally around a 12 or 13 year old because his father beat him growing up when he didn't sing songs the way he thought he should sing them. And so he had some deep wounds.
We also need to realize that when we are impacted from arrested development we can become a false self and we can be a poser in our way we handle ourselves and try to be somebody that we're not. So we seek to hide from our true self because our shame says we will not be acceptable to others as we are. We are driven to hide behind our fig leaf, our false self or false covering that protects us from our true self. This all happens on a subconscious basis as a built in protection mechanism from wounds we received as a child. You know, the movie Groundhog Day is a good example of this where he learns something about him every time he goes through a 24 hour period. And as he goes through each one of those 24 hour periods he changed one aspect of his behavior to get a different outcome. And that's kind of like what we're talking about with our false self and poser.
Hegstrom says 90% of our marital difficulties are rooted in a trauma experienced by one or more spouses between the age of five and nine. Arrested development sabotages the heart's good intentions and turns us into a spiritual hypocrite. We all require others to live by the rules we were required to live by in childhood. What does that mean? Well, let's say that you're in a situation that, let's say you're a business owner. And you see people that are just totally inept around you and you really lose your patience because you've been trained to do things with excellence and you've been trained to have high performance. So when you don't see that in others, you get angry. Your expectations are not being met. So you're living by a rule that you were required to live by in your life. And this can show up in a lot of different ways. In perfectionism, impatience, and shame. Competence becomes our method of dealing with a wounded heart. So we can hide behind our competence and compensate for our own pain through our competence.
John Eldridge said his plan from the beginning was to assault the heart, just as the wicked witch did to the tin woodman. Make them so busy they ignore the heart and wound them so deeply they don't want a heart. Twist their theology so they despise the heart. Take away their courage, destroy their creativity. Make intimacy with God impossible for them. Of course your heart would be the object of a great and fierce battle. It's your most precious possession. Without your heart you cannot have God. Without your heart you cannot have love. Without your heart you cannot have faith. Without your heart you cannot find the work you were meant to do. In other words, without your heart you cannot have life. "He delivers the afflicted in their affliction and opens their ears to his voice in adversity," says Job. God forces us back into or wound to learn the truth about our wound in order to become healed and free.
It says that Satan is an accuser. "Now salvation and strength and the kingdom of our God and the power of Christ have come for the accuser of our brethren, who accused them before our God day and night, has been cast down." So what voice are you listening to when you hear something in your head that accuses you? Are you listening to that accuser? Whenever we grant anyone other than Jesus Christ authority to tell us who we are, we've made that person a god in our life and entered into idolatry. Let's say that you grew up with a parent that said you're never going to amount to anything, or you're not good at this or that, and you were criticized. You were even shamed. Well, you've got to correct that identity and not believe that identity because that's not what God says about you. You need to believe what God says about you.
Let's talk for a moment about addictions. Addictions are anything you cannot willingly stop. Addictions are rooted in the need to be loved. And anything you cannot lay down by an act of your will is an addiction. It's a counterfeit desire for love and intimacy. It becomes an isolation chamber designed to mask our pain. In the brain we have something called a neurotransmitter. It emits two feel good hormones. Serotonin and dopamine. Negative or painful emotion causes the under secretion of serotonin. And that's where Satan comes into our hypothalamus and the brain stem connection. And this is where we drop in serotonin. But if we start looking at pornography or we do something that makes us feel good, it helps to bring our serotonin back. It gives us a high. And that is what leads to addictive behavior. The neurotransmitters dopamine and serotonin act as chemical messengers that relay nerve signals through the brain. Dopamine regulates muscle movement, motivation, and the sensation of pleasure. Whereas serotonin primarily affects mood, impulsiveness, and social behaviors.
My good friend Craig Hill wrote a small book that talks about the lies of an addiction. Anyone caught in addiction believes that God is not faithful and that the addictive habit will satisfy their addiction. They believe the habit is stronger than the power of God and that addiction is just the way you are. So they're all lies. They're false beliefs, if you will, that Satan plants into our life. Now, men who struggle with sex. Sometimes if a man was not nurtured growing up, he can be a sexualized adult. In other words, he may not necessarily be a sex addict, but he's an affection addict. So sex becomes that affection for him and he'll often look to the wife to get what they did not get in childhood. Maybe they didn't get touched much in childhood. Or hugs. They lack touch. And they came to know sex as love. And the unfortunate thing is the wife can never satisfy that hunger for live if that root issue is not dealt with. And you might even hear the wife say, "You're a sex addict," when he might not necessarily be a sex addict. It might be a basic need that was never met as a child.
When we live in compromise we lose confidence in the faith dimension of our lives. We struggle to hear the voice of God, which forces us to live our Christian life through performance and the flesh. In Psalm 106 he says, "And he gave them their requests but sent leanness in their soul."
Hey guys. I want to pause for a minute to tell you about something that just give you a heads up on. For the last many years we've been helping men and women like yourself understand what it means to live the larger story of your life. So my gift is really in teaching and I love encouraging believers to fulfill their purpose and destiny. So we've been thinking about a new initiative that could really help people and so we're getting close to announcing it, but we're not there yet. But if you want to know about that and be one of the first ones to know about it when we do release it, you can get on our waiting list. And we've set up a webpage just for that called becomegodschangeagent.com
. In addition, we provide a free download for you if you go on there and put your name on the waiting list. It's called Os Hillman's Top 10 Biblical Truths For Success In Life and Work. These are 10 areas that I believe contributed to my own journey with God and business. And I hope that this resource will be helpful to you. There's no cost. Just go to that. But you don't need to go there now. We'll make an announcement at the end of this as well so that you have that website address at your fingertips. Let's go back to the teaching and we'll talk about this later. God bless.
So we overcome the influence of these strongholds by renouncing and repenting of their influence through the prayer of faith and Jesus's blood to cleanse us from these influences. Now whenever the reaction to a situation seems to be extreme compared to the offense, you can know there is unresolved pain or the enemy is at work in the situation. So if somebody gives you a response that is a 10, that should be a two on the Richter scale, you know that something is going on under the hood. That their behavior is not logical. So it merely indicates there is a root problem. It's like a dashboard and the lights on the dash coming on. What's the root of this behavior? So you need to revisit the wound. Identify the events, and then renounce it and ask God to bring healing to that area.
Discover the lie. What agreement have you been making with the enemy? And apply the truth. The truth shall make you free. So the steps of freedom from a stronghold is one, identify the strongholds and their symptoms. Rank them from one to 10 by the level of influence they have. And work with someone close to you to confirm the strongholds and confess to renounce the influence of strongholds in Jesus's name. Each believer has the power of the holy spirit to renounce the influence of strongholds over their life as shown in second Corinthians 10:4. We have the divine power to demolish strongholds. And then you want to meditate and walk according to the word and renew your mind. One of the things I had to deal with, I was a workaholic. But it was rooted in fear. So I had to change the number of hours I was working because I was working out of fear.
Any self-image contrary to the truth of who God says you are in the spirit is a false self-image. You must agree with God, not with your flesh or the devil. Who said that? That's what you need to ask every time something comes into your head that might be contrary to your identity. "Let this mind be in you. It is also in Jesus Christ." Philippians 2:5. So whatever God sets you free from this and automatically gives you an anointing to set other people free from the same thing you were a victim of. That is your payback on the enemy. For I the lord your God am a jealous God, visiting the iniquity of the fathers upon the children to the third and fourth generations of those who hate me.
Take a look at this. This is a fascinating comparison of two families over a 200 year generation. Max Jutes was married to an atheist woman. They had 560 descendants, 310 died as paupers, 150 criminals, seven murderers, 100 drunkards, one half of the women were prostitutes. It cost the US government 1.2 million in 19th century dollars. But Jonathan Edwards, a preacher, married a godly woman. They had 1,394 descendants, 295 graduated from college, three state governors, 13 college presidents, 65 professors, three US senators, 30 judges, 100 lawyers, 56 doctors, 75 military officers, 100 missionaries, preachers, and authors, and 80 held public office, three mayors, and one comptroller of the US. Don't tell me the gospel doesn't make a huge difference in family systems. So you need to transform your past into a new beginning. You need to realize your identity and learn to contend for it.
All right, well that concludes our session for today. I hope that it was helpful and encouraging to you. If you want to go deeper in this topic, I have developed a book called Overcoming Hindrances to Fulfill Your Destiny. It has a lot more information in it and more teaching in this resource. It's only about 100 pages and you can get it off of our website at tgifbookstore.com
Earlier I mentioned about this new program that we're going to be launching soon, but we're not ready to announce it yet. But if you do want to know about it, just get on our waiting list and you'll be the first to be notified. You can go to our website, becomegodschangeagent.com
. And that will have your name on our waiting list and you'll be the first one to be notified. And you'll also receive a free resource called My Top 10 Biblical Truths for Succeeding in Life and Work. And this was a resource that I put together recently that were the top 10 things that I felt were the most important in my journey to be able to be successful in business and in ministry. So I hope that that will be of help to you. Just click on the website listed on the screen there.
So we look forward to seeing you in the next session. We're doing weekly podcasts now. We've set up this on our YouTube page and also iTunes. If you just want to listen to the sessions you can listen to them on iTunes as well as YouTube at the TGIF At Work podcast. God bless. See you next time.