Archive for February, 2016

How to Resist Identity Crisis

Friday, February 26th, 2016

1. MAKE UP YOUR MIND. When King Nebuchadnezzar took Daniel and his friends away from Jerusalem, he ordered them to learn the literature and language of the Chaldeans for three years—essentially trying to brainwash them with the Babylonian system. He even gave them new names (Daniel 1:1-7). This was pure identity disruption. But “Daniel made up his mind.” He drew a line and asked permission from the king’s commander to eat a different way (Daniel 1:8).

God gave them knowledge and intelligence in every branch of literature and wisdom; Daniel even understood all kinds of visions and dreams. As for every matter of wisdom and understanding about which the king consulted them, he found them ten times better than all the magicians and conjurers who were in all his realm. Daniel 1:17, 20

2. THRIVE WHERE YOU ARE. Joseph was sold as a slave and ended up in a pit and then in a prison before saving an entire nation. David was forced to hide out in a cave before becoming king. Though they tried to change everything about Daniel, they couldn’t get to the heart of the matter – he was God’s. Because Daniel took a stand, stayed focused, and stayed in love with God, he went beyond just survival and began to thrive behind enemy lines.

And Daniel continued until the first year of Cyrus the king. Daniel 1:21

3. CONTINUE. Daniel continued and served God in Babylon through several different reigns of kings. A culture shift can happen through one person’s obedience. You can be in the world but not conformed to it (Romans 12:2). If you’ve encountered vicious oppression, keep going. Keep trusting Jesus. Having done all to stand, stand and believe God for breakthrough!

Press on,
Pastor Jeff Perry
St. Louis Family Church®

DAILY CONFESSION
I have received a kingdom which cannot be shaken (Hebrews 12:28). In all these things I overwhelmingly conquer through Him who loves me. I forget what lies behind and reach forward to what lies ahead, pressing on toward the goal for the prize of the upward call of God in Christ Jesus (Philippians 3:12-14).

i·den·ti·ty, noun
The state or fact of remaining the same one or ones, as under varying aspects or conditions. The sense of self, providing sameness and continuity in personality over time.

Copyright © 2016 St. Louis Family Church. All rights reserved. No part of this article may be reprinted or distributed in any form without prior written permission of St. Louis Family Church. Unless otherwise noted, all Scripture references are from the New American Standard Bible (NASB) Copyright © 1960, 1962, 1963, 1968, 1971, 1972, 1973, 1975, 1977, 1995 by The Lockman Foundation. “Identity.” Dictionary.com Unabridged. Random House, Inc. 24 Feb. 2016. Dictionary.com.

The Battle Is the Lord’s

Friday, February 19th, 2016

Then David said to the Philistine, “You come to me with a sword, a spear, and a javelin, but I come to you in the name of the Lord of hosts, the God of the armies of Israel, whom you have taunted. This day the Lord will deliver you up into my hands . . . that all the earth may know that there is a God in Israel, and that all this assembly may know that the Lord does not deliver by sword or by spear; for the battle is the Lord’s and He will give you into our hands.” 1 Samuel 17:45-47

A DIFFERENT PERSPECTIVE.
When King Saul and his army got preoccupied and burdened by the oppression of Goliath, David arrived with a different perspective, fresh from his time with God while tending the sheep. These Bible verses show us that life is not a flowery bed of ease—there are definite challenges. But we can face off with our giants in the name of Jesus and win the battle.

THE FIGHT OF FAITH. The times when you face off with Goliath must always be founded on times of being still before God, of waiting in His presence and receiving His strength and power. Invest in a good Bible. Get a good app and read and listen to the Word. Find verses in the Word that speak to your challenge, write these truths down, underline and highlight them. Let God’s promises become like well-worn and familiar stones in the arsenal of your life.

For a wide door for effective service has opened to me, and there are many adversaries. 1 Corinthians 16:9

STAY SHARP. God has called us to take a stand on the battle lines – not numbed by the constant attacks but empowered to prevail. Winning the battle isn’t just about self-actualization and personal benefit. God has designed you to be a carrier of His presence, to be an ambassador for Him in the power of the Holy Spirit. There are giants looming before you and there are people who need you to stand up with a heart full of faith and declare that the battle is the Lord’s and He will give you the victory.

Press On,
Pastor Jeff Perry
St. Louis Family Church®

DAILY CONFESSION
I don’t war according to the flesh, because my weapons are not of the flesh but are divinely powerful for the destruction of fortresses—of every lofty thing raised up against the knowledge of God—and I am taking every thought captive to the obedience of Christ (2 Corinthians 10:3-5).

ef·fec·tive, adj.
Producing a decided, decisive, or desired effect. Ready for service or action.

How to Fight a Good Fight

Friday, February 12th, 2016

I have fought the good fight, I have finished the course, I have kept the faith; in the future there is laid up for me the crown of righteousness. 2 Timothy 4:7-8a

1. BE FAITHFUL. Don’t underestimate the value of a life of faithfulness by only waiting around for an eventful day. King David as a young man was trustworthy with his daily responsibilities when his dad sent him to take food to his brothers and check up on how they were doing (1 Samuel 17:17-18, 20a). Delivering cheese, bread, and grain doesn’t seem like the beginning of a big destiny. But in the context of obedience, God used David to take down a giant and defeat an army.

For our struggle is not against flesh and blood, but against the rulers, against the powers, against the world forces of this darkness, against the spiritual forces of wickedness in the heavenly places. Ephesians 6:12

2. CHOOSE GOD’S WEAPONS. When it comes to the fight of faith, human methods don’t quite fit. When King Saul offered his armor to David before his battle with Goliath, David refused and instead chose five smooth stones to go with his slingshot (1 Samuel 17:38-40). As followers of Jesus, our greatest weapon is love and our five smooth stones come from the Word of God.

But you will receive power when the Holy Spirit has come upon you. . . Acts 1:8a

3. RELY ON THE HOLY SPIRIT. No matter what is looming before you, God is greater. The power of the Holy Spirit never changes, and He will help you overcome the battles that weigh you down. Don’t rely on your own power. Keep standing in faith and let God win the fight for you.

Press on,
Pastor Jeff Perry
St. Louis Family Church®

PRAY THIS PRAYER
I will fight the good fight, I will finish the course, I will keep the faith (2 Timothy 4:7-8a). I refuse to quit. Thank You, God, for the tenacity to stand my ground and believe that all You have promised will come to pass in my life, in my church, in my city, in my world. I will fulfill everything You have purposed for me—not by might, not by power, but by Your Spirit (Zechariah 4:6). In Jesus’ Name, amen.

faith·ful, adj.
Strict or thorough in the performance of duty. True to one’s word, promises, vows, etc. Steady in allegiance or affection; loyal; constant. Reliable, trusted, or believed. Full of faith; believing.

Copyright © 2016 St. Louis Family Church. All rights reserved. No part of this article may be reprinted or distributed in any form without prior written permission of St. Louis Family Church. Unless otherwise noted, all Scripture references are from the New American Standard Bible (NASB) Copyright © 1960, 1962, 1963, 1968, 1971, 1972, 1973, 1975, 1977, 1995 by The Lockman Foundation. “Faithful.” Dictionary.com Unabridged. Random House, Inc. 09 Feb. 2016. Dictionary.com.

In the Power of the Holy Spirit

Friday, February 5th, 2016

“But you will receive power when the Holy Spirit has come upon you; and you shall be My [Jesus] witnesses both in Jerusalem, and in all Judea and Samaria, and even to the remotest part of the earth.” Acts 1:8

GO TO THE MOUNTAINTOP. I am calling the church to fasting and prayer this month. In the Bible, leaders would often go to the mountaintop to seek God. Your mountaintop can be anywhere away from distractions – your closet, your car, your backyard. Smith Wigglesworth said that God’s purpose in taking us to the mountaintop is to prepare us for “greater usefulness in the valley.” As you fast and pray and spend time with God, you will grow more sensitive to His voice and more aware of what God wants to do in these upcoming days.

MEDITATE ON GOD’S WORD. When the Holy Spirit led Jesus into the wilderness to fast, the devil tempted Him, but Jesus resisted him with the Word of God. When you renew your mind in the Word, your thought life isn’t so easily hijacked by distractions and you’ll be able to tune in to the Holy Spirit to receive wisdom, clarity, decision-making ability, and healing.

“And Jesus returned to Galilee in the power of the Spirit . . .” Luke 4:14a

LIVE IN THE POWER OF THE SPIRIT. How are things going to be accomplished in 2016? By the power of the Holy Spirit. As we jumpstart our year by fasting and seeking God, we will see breakthrough and we will receive direction. The best answers, the wisest plans, the greatest dreams and purposes are all available to you – “‘not by might, nor by power, but by my Spirit,’ says the Lord of hosts” (Zechariah 4:6b).

God bless you!
Pastor Jeff Perry
St. Louis Family Church®

PRAY THIS PRAYER
God, I know that I will be effective not by might, nor by power, but by Your Spirit (Zechariah 4:6). Show me what kind of fast You want me to do this month. I lift up my eyes and see the fields are ripe to harvest (John 4:35). Help me to be ready for You to add day by day those who are being saved (Acts 2:47). In Jesus’ Name, amen.

pow·er, noun
The ability or capacity to act or do something effectively. The ability or official capacity to exercise control; authority.

Copyright © 2016 St. Louis Family Church. All rights reserved. No part of this article may be reprinted or distributed in any form without prior written permission of St. Louis Family Church. Unless otherwise noted, all Scripture references are from the New American Standard Bible (NASB) Copyright © 1960, 1962, 1963, 1968, 1971, 1972, 1973, 1975, 1977, 1995 by The Lockman Foundation. Wigglesworth, Smith. “The Power of the Name.” Ever Increasing Faith. Springfield, MO: Gospel Pub. House, 1971. N. pag. Print. “Power.” The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fifth Edition copyright © 2016 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.