March 12, 2014
I have been reading some great books that I am trying to get a discount on so I can get them to you. The author is Neil Anderson and the books ate “Victory Over The Darkness”, “The Bondage Breaker” and “Finding Hope Again”.  The books are about Spiritual Warfare and the tools we need not only to fight the devil but how we can have joy again no matter what our circumstances are.

Joy –  great happiness: feelings of great happiness or pleasure, especially of an elevated or spiritual kind – MSN Encarta Dictionary

When was the last time you had great happiness? Has it been a few moments, months or years? Why is it that for the most part we attachhappiness to success and things? We all know the right answer to true happiness so why do we get caught up in this trap?

In Acts Chapter 16 Paul was on his second missionary journey with Silas. They came upon a girl that was a fortune teller. The girl kept telling people that Paul and Silas were there to tell the people how to be saved. Paul in Acts 16 v 18 became so troubled that he commanded the evil spirit to come out of this girl. The evil spirit left the girl and so did the money making that her owners made off her fortune telling.  Paul and Silas were dragged and put into prison.

In the middle of the night there was an earthquake that shook the building so hard that all the doors flew open and the chains came off the prisoner’s feet.  The guard was going to kill himself because he thought the prisoners escaped but Paul and Silas were still there. The jailer now wanted to be a believer in this Jesus.

The jailer brought Paul and Silas back to his house, cleaned them up and wanted to know how to be saved.

Acts 16:31 “Believe in the Lord Jesus, and you will be saved….”

Belief is not doing THINGS – Things are works and we are saved by grace. But this is what I want to get across this morning.

Acts 16:34 “The jailer brought them into his house and set a meal before them; he was filled with joy because he had come to believe in God. ”

Jesus is the ONLY one who saves as we are dead in our sin. There is no way out but Him. When we have been rescued we are then filled with the Holy Spirit. We have joy because we finally see what darkness we had been living in and how joyous the light and freedom of Jesus is. We didn’t realize how tied up and suffocated we were till we got a taste of freedom. We finally had true joy and it wasn’t attached to anything.

So why do we fall back into the pit of darkness? Why do so many believers look like they just took a bite of a lemon? Perspective!!! The less we pray, read Gods word and fall back into worldly things the more we quench the Spirit of God. Most of us have our joy attached to the affirmation of others, a successful lifestyle or being in the IN crowd. That will never bring lasting joy. That is a smokescreen by Satan that will eventually turn to darkness.

I am asking you today to come back. Come back to the joy of YOUR salvation. Don’t let Satan have another day of taking over and directing you. Ask God to take over and in His strength let God work in you. Let God direct you and take you to His places. Then your joy will return and it won’t have to do with your circumstances. It will only have to do with the fact that you are the child of THE King. Never forget that. Go in the strength of the Lord today and don’t let anyone steal your peace.

Brad