“Begin to rejoice in the Lord, and your bones will flourish like an herb, and your cheeks will glow with the bloom of health and freshness. Worry, fear, distrust, care-all are poisonous! Joy is balm and healing, and if you will but rejoice, God will give power.” A.B. Simpson
After this, the enemies of my soul came to make war on me – the degraders of man, the haters of love and the hordes of lust and misguided trust. My friends came to me and warned me that this vast army was at hand and had already made entry into the land of my influence. Being in a state of fear, I was determined to seek the Lord and so I called to my family and friends and asked them to join me in a time of fasting and singleness of mind in order to hear from God clearly. So they joined me in seeking the Lord – in believing that He would be true when everything and everyone else appeared false. I stood before the “gathering” and said: “O Lord, God of Jesse and Edith, Robert and Jean, are You not the God who sits enthroned in heaven? You rule over all the kingdoms of the nations – both physical and spiritual. Power and might are within Your hand and no one can bring a charge against those You have declared as righteous. If Your word declares that my enemies are defeated – they are defeated. O my loving God, have You not been faithful in driving out the imposters of this present culture and entrusting it to the faith-filled – Your friends? We have lived in the presence of Your Name and power, so if devastation and collapse come upon us, whether by Your hand of discipline, disease, or barren cupboards, we will stand firm in Your presence and hold to the promise that we are the dwelling place of the Living God. We will believe that when we call out to You in our despair You will hear us and save us.”
“Lord, my enemies stand at the gates of my home; enemies that I have not been successful in defeating when in the past I had the opportunity. Since it seemed that You had not given me an easy victory, I turned in retreat and did not eliminate my foes. Now my enemies have taken advantage of my fear and have come to enslave my family – the family You gave me as a possession to protect as an inheritance. O my God, my Mighty Warrior, will You not do what my weak efforts could not and destroy them? My friends, my family and least of all I have no power to do battle against the forces set against my soul. I do not know what to do, but my eyes are set on You.”
All my friends and family – my brothers and sisters – took their stand before the Lord. As I stood in the gathering, the Spirit of the Lord came upon me, the son of Jesse, the son of Jesse before him. He said to me, “Mark and all who love him, do not be afraid or discouraged because your enemies are encamped around you – for the battle is not yours but God’s. Tomorrow you will face your enemies of condemnation, hate and deceit. They will be found in your house, in your office and in your car. They will lie in wait while you shop for produce, play tennis and when you gather together with the saints. DO NOT FEAR THEM! You will not have to fight this battle. Take up your position – stand firm – and witness the deliverance of your soul. I will take great delight in bringing this to you. Oh sons and daughters of Jesse, do not be afraid; do not be disheartened. Go out and face them and know that I, the Lord am with you.”
I bowed with my face to the ground and worshipped before the Lord and the entire gathering with me. Then some of my brothers and sisters rose up to praise the Lord with a great cry.
Early the next morning we left for the lonely places of the wilderness. As we set out the Word of the Lord came to us and said: “Listen to me you sons and daughters of the Most High God! Have faith in Me, your God and you will be upheld; have faith in his servants and you will find your victory.” We encouraged one another with this Word and began to praise God for the blinding splendor of His holiness. This became our battle cry as we faced our enemies – “Give thanks to the Lord, for His love endures forever.”
As we began to sing and worship, God pulled from my mind the ill thoughts of self-condemnation and defeat. He tore down the barriers set up against my marriage, my children and all of my love relationships. As believers we set our hearts and minds on God and a revolution of thought consumed us and we were released from the enemies of deceit and false hope….
And the gathering was truly filled with the joy and fear of the Lord.
2 Chronicles 20 – According to Mark