God has exciting plans for you this year, but you’ll need a strong spirit to receive them all! Here are four ways to develop a strong spirit in 2018.
It’s the new year—fresh, exciting and full of possibility! God has exciting plans for you this year, but, you’ll need a strong spirit to receive everything He has for you. Whatever you find in God’s Word, if you can believe it and stand for it—you can have it with a strong spirit!
What is a strong spirit?
Proverbs 18:14 tells us that a strong spirit is what sustains us in any kind of trouble. A strong spirit is confident, established, unmovable and ready for anything. It is steady under pressure, full of joy and peace—and it never quits. A strong spirit will get you through anything—physical attacks, financial problems, relational difficulties, career setbacks and whatever else the devil throws your way.
When we think of a strong spirit, David is an example to us in many ways. In 2 Samuel 22:30 (KJV), he said, “For by Thee I have run through a troop: by my God have I leaped over a wall.”
Now, that’s a strong spirit!
David faced a lot of challenges, and many of them lasted for years. But David didn’t give in to defeat—He pressed on to victory. He knew what belonged to him, and he didn’t stop until it came to pass. In the same way, we can develop the capacity to believe God for anything and everything (Mark 9:23).
This new year, set a goal to build a barrier, a force field, a wall of protection around you so strong that when the storms of life hit, you will stand like a rock—unshaken and unmovable. When you work to develop your spirit, you will become so rooted, grounded and established in the Word that you can repel disease, stop worry, resist sin, override doubt, dissolve offense and block pressure.
In fact, you can build up your spiritual immune system to such a degree that sickness can’t penetrate it, discouragement can’t sway it, fear can’t stop it, bad news can’t move it and adversity can’t affect it.
So, how can you strengthen your spirit? Here are four ways to develop a strong spirit in 2018.
Evaluate Your Spiritual Condition
“Dear friend, I hope all is well with you and that you are as healthy in body as you are strong in spirit.” –3 John 2
Is there anything missing in your life? Good health? A strong marriage? Increase in your finances? If so, it may be time to take a look at the condition of your spirit. One indicator of a weak spirit is a lack of success. You see, the degree of success we experience is directly connected to the condition of our spirit. Without proper care, our spiritual immune system will weaken, opening the door to the effects of the curse.
Every believer has the potential to stand in a greater place of supernatural strength. As we build a stronger spirit, it will become easier to receive, resist and stand. We will be victorious with a strong spirit! And we will be strong enough to strengthen others.
You can become so spiritually strong that your mountain-moving faith will produce mighty results, unhindered by any force!
Watch Your Spiritual Diet
“Man shall not live and be upheld and sustained by bread alone, but by every word that comes forth from the mouth of God.” –Matthew4:4 (AMPC)
When you go for your annual check-up, your physician likely asks about your diet—what types of foods you are eating, and how much. He or she will do this because it is well-documented that your diet greatly affects your overall physical health.
You’ve heard the phrase, “You are what you eat.” Well, the same is true in the spiritual realm. You must feed your spirit “faith food” in order for it to be strong. God’s Word is our food, and it contains the proper nutrients for building a strong spirit. It is our primary source of strength.
Sadly, instead of feeding on the Word of God, many people spend a lot of time feeding on television and entertainment, most of which is contrary to His Word. This type of “food” feeds your spirit fear, doubt, anger, violence, foul language and sexual immorality, to name a few. You may think these things won’t harm your spirit, but just like a poor natural diet, they can be life-threatening.
Healthy, nutritious food for our spirit is the Word of God. Whether you know it or not, your spirit has a voracious appetite for God’s Word. The Word feeds your spirit just like natural food feeds your body. It’s like a healthy meal to your spirit.
People can go a lifetime and never receive THE BLESSING that is theirs because they don’t pay enough attention to God’s Word. Healing, prosperity and all the good things we need are in THE BLESSING. To receive all God has for you, faith has to be operating at full strength. Romans 10:17 tells us faith comes by hearing the Word of God.
Get Spiritual Exercise
“Train yourself toward godliness…[keeping yourself spiritually fit].” –1 Timothy 4: 7 (AMPC)
Every New Year’s Day, millions of people across the country determine to get physically fit. Exercise equipment sales soar, and workout DVDs fly off the shelves. But what about a month from now? How many workout DVDs will have fallen behind the DVD player, not to be missed? How many treadmills will already have already collected dust?
Getting fit is an investment. If you’ve ever worked to build natural muscle, you know it takes time. First, you start with light weights, then you gradually work your way up to heavier weights. It doesn’t happen overnight—it takes persistence and dedication!
The Bible tells us that while there is some value in physical exercise, spiritual exercise is much more important (1 Timothy 4:7-8). That’s because exercising your faith will strengthen your spiritual muscles.
The stronger you are spiritually, the easier it is to believe God and receive from Him. When a bully comes to fight is not the time to start lifting weights. You don’t wait for trouble to come to you before you get in the Word. You must stay in a place of spiritual readiness.
So, how can you exercise your spirit?
Reading, studying, confessing, praying and standing in faith are all powerful workouts for the spirit. James 1:22-25 tells us we must be doers of the Word, not hearers only. We won’t make our way prosperous by just knowing the Word of God, but by doing the Word.
If you want to develop a stronger, more robust faith in a particular area, you must feed on the Word and then exercise your faith in that Word. For example, Mark 11:22-26 reveals the importance of exercising your “forgiveness muscle.”
As you likely already know, this is one of the most difficult muscles to build, but the more you exercise forgiveness, the stronger you become at forgiving others. Becoming proficient at forgiving will keep the flow of THE BLESSING free and clear from blockage.
What is the fitness plan for exercising forgiveness?
- Locate the scripture you are going to use to exercise your faith.
- Say, “By faith, I forgive ___for what they have done to me or said about me, according to Mark 11:22-26.”
- “I release every feeling of hurt, animosity or anger and do not hold anything against ____, and I love ____with the love of God in Jesus’ Name.”
- “I refuse to ever bring this up again.”
These same steps will work in any area where you exercise faith in the Word: health, finances, family, marriage, relationships, future or employment.
For an exercise in standing for your finances, see 10 Confessions for Finances in the New Year.
You may not notice a change at first, but the next time a challenging situation comes your way, you may be surprised at how powerfully your faith responds.
Take Spiritual Rest
“Come to Me, all you who labor and are heavy-laden and overburdened, and I will cause you to rest….” –Matthew 11:28 (AMPC)
Like any good fitness program, building a strong spirit includes rest. Keep in mind, however, rest isn’t always the state of doing nothing. Instead, it’s an active choice to press in and trust God. There are several ways we can take spiritual rest.
First, we find rest when we cast all our cares upon Him (1 Peter 5:6-8). How much care do we cast? All of it. Sometimes people feel like they are being irresponsible if they don’t stress and worry about every detail of life. However, the Bible is clear—worry is sin, and we’ve been given the assurance that God will take care of us when we trust in Him.
Next, when we stand in faith for any of God’s promises and believe we receive, we will find rest in the Lord. We will be able to resist the enemy and his attempts to steal our peace. Spending time praying in other tongues will edify and build up your spirit while you are standing, as well.
Then, watch your schedule. You can’t keep the pedal to the metal and expect to stay strong, just like you can’t continually work out in the gym because muscles need to rest and recover in order to grow strong.
Finally, wait on the Lord. Those who wait for the Lord won’t get tired and they will renew their strength (Isaiah 40:31). But, we don’t wait passively. We wait by spending time in His presence. When you’re waiting on Him, don’t exert—take in. Put your flesh aside, and get your thoughts under control. Spend time in God’s presence worshiping and praising Him. Then, as you drink in His glory and power, He will saturate your spirit. That is what rest will do for your spirit.
As Pastor George Pearsons says, “Show me a person who has a strong spirit, and I will show you someone who takes the time to rest in the Lord.”
Watch this video from Pastor George Pearsons and Gloria Copeland about developing a strong spirit through rest:
When you evaluate your spirit, focus on diet, exercise and rest, you will be on your way to developing a strong spirit in 2018! You will be unstoppable, and your life immovable. So, come eat, run and rest. Your blessing is waiting for you!
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