BLESSED To Be Strong In The Lord! (Part 2) * Pastor Jerry Ghirardo * 2 Corinthians 12:10 * 7/9/2017

I. Recognize that you are in a SPIRITUAL battle.

  • Ephesians 6:12 "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 the heavenly realms."
  • 2 Corinthians 10:4 "The weapons we fight with are not the weapons of this world. On the contrary, they have divine power to demolish strongholds."
  • Our focus is often on our health issues, our financial challenges or problems in relationship when our focus should also be on the spiritual battle raging in our lives.

II. Don't rely on your own STRENGTH; rely instead on the strength of the LORD.

  • After you recognize that you are in a spiritual battle, the next step is to lay down your arms and surrender to Christ. Then you can rely on Christ's strength to fight your battles.
  • 2 Corinthians 12:9-10 "'My grace is sufficient for you, for my power is made perfect in weakness.' ... For when I am weak, then I am strong."
  • Isaiah 40:29-31 "He gives strength to the weary and increases the power of the weak."
  • Philippians 4:13 "I can do all things through Christ who strengthens me."

III. Then pick up your spiritual ARMOR.

  • Psalm 138:3 "On the day I called out (prayer), you answered me. You made me bold with strength in my soul."
  • James 1:5 "If any of you lacks wisdom, you should ask God...and it will be given to you."
  • Isaiah 40:31 "...but those who hope in the Lord will renew their strength. They will soar on wings of eagles; they will run and not grow weary."
  • Psalm 119:28 "My soul is weary with sorrow, strengthen me according to your word."
  • Nehemiah 8:10 "Do not grieve, for the joy of the Lord is your strength."
  • 2 Timothy 2:1 "...you then my son, be strong in the grace that is Christ Jesus."

IV. Remember always to TRUST in God's promises.

  • Jeremiah 29:11 "For I know the plans I have for you," declares the Lord, "plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future."
  • Romans 8:28 "And we know that in all things God works for the good of those who love him, who have been called according to his purpose."
  • Isaiah 49:23 "...those who hope in me will not be disappointed."

V. Be sure to WAIT on the Lord.

  • Psalm 27: 14 "Wait for the Lord; be strong and take heart and wait for the Lord."
  • Psalm 33:20 "We wait in hope for the Lord; he is our help and our shield."
  • Hosea 12:6 "But you must return to your God; maintain love and justice, and wait for your God always."
  • Isaiah 64:4 "God...who acts on behalf of the one who wait for him.
  • Genesis 16 - Abraham and Sarah take things into their own hands. When we are impatient, we miss out on God's best, or worse - we mess up altogether.

VI. After seeking God's help and waiting on him, then act in accordance with God's WILL.

  • Philippians 2:13 "For it is God who works in you to will and to act in order to fulfill His good purpose."
  • Galatians 5:16 "So I say, live by the Spirit, and you will not gratify the desires of the sinful nature."
  • Colossians 3:17 "And whatever you do, in word or in deed, do everything in the name of the Lord Jesus, giving thanks to God the father through him."
  • Luke 22:42 "Father, if you are willing, take this cup from me; yet not my will but thy will be done."

Digging Deeper: 

Consider some ways to recognize the spiritual battle that you are facing in real time.

What is Satan's objective? What is God's purpose in allowing this challenge?

Think of some times when you prayed, waited and relied on the Lord and the Lord showed up to strengthen you.

Now consider some times when you relied on your own strength instead of the Lord's strength.