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Archive for October, 2011

21 Question Test of Spiritual Maturity
Walking in Godly Authority
As Christians, we have been adopted into the family of God (Galatians 3:26 and 4:6).  As His children, we are entitled to all kingdom rights and privileges.  The Lord is our Daddy; we have rights to everything He owns and—just for the record—He is not poor.  One of the most important things we inherited from Him is authority.
Change Your Vision
Your duty as a child of God is to destroy the works of the devil in the earth.  This power is a part of the total salvation package that Jesus died for you to have.  You need to get a clear picture of yourself and understand that you are a royal ruler.  See yourself as the leader that you are; the Lord has graced you to do so.  Remember that mature children of God walk are not doormats; they graciously walk in their authority because they are authorized by divine power (1 John 4:4).
Exert Your Power in a Godly Way
Start commanding challenges in your life to line up with the Word of God.  Do not tolerate foolishness from the enemy.  You have to exercise your authority because it is preparation for Heaven (Genesis 1:26, John 5:19). Through salvation, we have been positioned to rule over darkness and demons.  God expects us to be firm with the devil because his agenda is to destroy us.  However, we must have a balance and be sure to display the love of God to those around us.  Our authority should not be used to humiliate or belittle people.  We are trying to draw people to Christ not push them away.

As a mature Christian, use your leadership to inspire by example.  In Ephesians 2:1-6 of the Message Bible, says that:

   1 -6It wasn’t so long ago that you were mired in that old stagnant life of sin. You let the world, which doesn’t know the first thing about living, tell you how to live. You filled your lungs with polluted unbelief, and then exhaled disobedience. We all did it, all of us doing what we felt like doing, when we felt like doing it, all of us in the same boat. It’s a wonder God didn’t lose his temper and do away with the whole lot of us. Instead, immense in mercy and with an incredible love, he embraced us. He took our sin-dead lives and made us alive in Christ. He did all this on his own, with no help from us! Then he picked us up and set us down in highest heaven in company with Jesus, our Messiah.
 
Dominion Belongs to God
When you come across the spirits of drama and adversity, let your godly authority rise up in you.  That’s why it is important to stay steeped in the Word so that your flesh won’t get in the way.  Your authority is limitless and has the ability to move mountains in your life.  Your job is to secure the land with your confession and faith and to not succumb to the devil’s attacks (Mark 11:22, Hebrews 11:6, Psalms 8:3).
You should never want for anything in Christ because He has already given you everything you need for life and godliness.  The challenges are coming, so you have to be ready.  Your power to rule is inside of you so begin to develop it.  Your power grows when you refuse to give in t emotions and pain.  Make your choices up on the Word of God—not how you feel.  Remember that you reign as a believer and that you have the victory in every situation.  Keep your thoughts in line with the Word!
Love
Dr. Joyce Oliver

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21 Question Test of Spiritual Maturity
Evaluate Your Relationship with the Holy Spirit and the Bible (the Word of God)
Hebrews 4:12-13 (Message Bible) says, “God means what He says. What He says goes. His powerful Word is sharp as a surgeon’s scalpel, cutting through everything, whether doubt or defense, laying us open to listen and obey. Nothing and no one is impervious to God’s Word. We can’t get away from it—no matter what.”
Many people say they love the Lord and they know Him, but they don’t know His Word.  How can we love God if we don’t get to know Him?   Knowing Him means hiding His Word in our hearts.  The more Word we have in our hearts, the more we are like Him.  Your Bible is more than a decorative fixture on the coffee table; it’s a living thing that is active and powerful.  You will activate the power of the Word in your life when you apply it.  The Lord hides good things in His Word, and only the people that want Him will find them.
Benefits of the Word of God
We are going to be accountable for all of the Word that we hear.  The Bible is one of the essential tools that we need to be successful in the earth.  No devil in Hell has power over the Word of God (Isaiah 55:8). That’s what makes It so precious because he has to obey It.  However, the Word can only be used by those to whom it is revealed (Luke 10:24).  You will experience the power of the Word when you have an appetite for It (Matthew 5:6).  When we ignore the Word and disobey Its message, we become dull, and calluses grow on our hearts.  When people don’t have an appetite for the Word of the Lord, they will never get the treasures that are hidden inside of it.  Below is a list of attributes about the Bible.
·        It’s an anchor for us when crisis comes.
·        Like a spiritual scalpel, the Word operates on us and cuts out anything that shouldn’t be there.
·        It removes darkness from our lives and reveals hidden things
·        It discerns and divides evil from good.
·        It rids bad habits in our lives.
·        It reveals things in our lives that can be harmful (John 1:14).
·        It contains secrets of the kingdom of Heaven.
Understanding Holy Spirit
As stated in John 14:25-26 (Message Bible), Jesus said, “I’m telling you these things while I’m still living with you. The Friend, the Holy Spirit whom the Father will send at my request, will make everything plain to you. He will remind you of all the things I have told you. I’m leaving you well and whole. That’s my parting gift to you. Peace. I don’t leave you the way you’re used to being left—feeling abandoned, bereft. So don’t be upset. Don’t be distraught.
The Lord sent His Holy Spirit on earth as an asset for our spiritual success.  Below are some attributes of Holy Spirit.
·        He should be honored at all times.
·        He should not be ignored.
·        He should be acknowledged in every decision that we make.
·        He is a person and not a thing (John 16:17).
·        He is an invisible spirit person who is with God and who is designated to guide us.
·        He is here inside of you.
·        He is required to be in our lives if we are going to be spiritually mature.
·        He tells us where our provision is.
·        He corrects our limited thinking.
If you want to live a full and rich life, if you want to live with no limits, make a conscious decision to maintain a solid relationship with the Word of the Lord and Holy Spirit.
Love,
Dr. Joyce Oliver

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21 Question Test of Spiritual Maturity
Establishing a Prayer Life
Do you know what prayer is?  James 5:14-16 (Message Bible) says,  “Are you hurting? Pray. Do you feel great? Sing. Are you sick? Call the church leaders together to pray and anoint you with oil in the name of the Master. Believing-prayer will heal you, and Jesus will put you on your feet. And if you’ve sinned, you’ll be forgiven—healed inside and out. Make this your common practice: Confess your sins to each other and pray for each other so that you can live together whole and healed. The prayer of a person living right with God is something powerful to be reckoned with.”
Also, it is communion with God; it’s the time where you are talking to the Lord, and you become one with Him.  Prayer is where we are developed spiritually; it’s where our faith is cleansed of doubt.  Also, prayer solidifies and ensures our relationship with God.  Below are other advantages that we can find in prayer to the Lord:
·        Prayer is where emotional needs are met.
·        Prayer provides an ability to receive instruction and know God’s will.
·        Prayer is where we get knowledge and faith for our assignments.
·        Prayer is where we get to be a priest on behalf of others.
·        Prayer is where we usher in His will of human affairs.
·        Prayer is where God will give us revelation of the present and the future.
·        Prayer is where the Lord will show us when to repent.
·        Prayer is where we deal with the devil.
·        Prayer is where the Lord provides judgment, wisdom, and grace.
·        Prayer is where the Lord will saturate you until your human eyes can see God.
·        Prayer brings discernment, allows you to hear the Lord’s voice, and let’s you see when the devil comes in.
·        Prayer is a vacation because you can leave the trials of life and boldly approach the throne of the Lord.
·        Prayer allows the impossible to become possible.
·        Prayer moves mountains and brings ever increasing favor.
Think About This
How many more victories would have had in your life if you prayed?  Did you know that your relationships are planned and delivered when you put time in with the Lord?  There is never a good reason to be stressed.  Instead, cast issues out of your mind by praying.  When thoughts come to torment and distract you, just pray.
The Power of Speaking in Tongues
Praying in tongues is the highest level of prayer because it surpasses the flesh and the human mind (Jude 1:20).  However it is a controversial topic in the church, but it should not be.  Contrary to religious belief, speaking in tongues is not an Old Testament tradition.  The gift of praying in tongues is just what the Lord designed it to be; a gift, an asset that should be instrumental in the life of every Christian.  Speaking in tongues is a private yet power filled language that is strictly between you and the Lord.  Finally, speaking in tongues develops your relationship with God.
Live your life to the fullest in God.  Begin praying to Him and find out what He has to tell you!
Love,
Dr. Joyce Oliver

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