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Are You Ready to Overcome?

Did you know that when you speak from your spirit man you overcome? All of the testing you are going through is linked with the word of your testimony that comes out of your mouth, and is produced at the end of your testing. Your spirit man is like the Ark of the Covenant, where the testaments were placed and secured for all mankind. When you endure the enemy’s temptations and your own soulish carnal ways, your spirit man develops an overcoming power.

First, let’s make sure we share the same definition of the word testimony. All of them are essentially the same thing: the story of a person’s spiritual journey. Basically, testimony is defined as someone’s personal spiritual narrative. And while our testimony includes parts of our biography, that isn’t the heart of it. Let’s set aside the definitions dealing with legal or courtroom testimony and focus on the spiritual dimension.

Testimony is evidence in support of a fact or assertion, proof, or a public declaration regarding a religious experience. To testify means to express or declare a strong belief, to make a statement based on personal knowledge in support of an asserted idea, to declare publicly or make known, and to bear witness or provide evidence for.

The Word of God is full of people who testified to the power, majesty and mercy of God.

Joseph testified to his brothers when he said: “Do not be afraid, for am I in the place of God? But as for you, you meant evil against me; but God meant it for good, in order to bring it about, as it is this day, to save many people alive. Now therefore, do not be afraid” (Gen. 50:19-21).

Job told the Lord, “I know that you can do everything, and that no purpose of Yours can be withheld from You” (Job 42:2).

David said, “I sought the Lord, and He heard me, and delivered me from all my fears” (Psalm 34:4).

Mary declared, “For He who is mighty has done great things for me, and holy is His name” (Luke 1:49).

Stephen, moments before he was stoned, said, “Look! I see the heavens opened and the Son of Man standing at the right hand of God!” (Acts 7:56)

Paul said to the Philippians: “Everywhere and in all things I have learned both to be full and to be hungry, both to abound and to suffer need. I can do all things through Christ who strengthens me” (Phil. 4:12-13).

One thing all of these testimonies have in common is that each one of the speakers directs our attention to the Lord. Our testimony, like our worship, is meant to magnify the Lord—not our own ego. Only when Jesus is exalted will our testimony bear the witness of the Holy Spirit.

There are times when your soul needs to hear what your spirit has to say. In 1 Samuel 30:6, when David and his men found that Ziklag had been burned and their wives and children had been captured, David “strengthened himself in the Lord.” In fact, the ones who were with David wanted to stone him. They obviously had not been fellowshipping with the Holy Spirit, so David had to strengthen himself. His soul really needed to hear what his spirit had to say.

Have you ever had to encourage yourself? At times like that you want to be sure that you have a well-nourished, strong, healthy spirit that has been fellowshipping with the Holy Spirit, because there may not be anyone else around. If you had to encourage yourself, if your spirit had to encourage your soul, how would you do?

Let me encourage you to nourish your spirit, worship, and minister in the power of the Holy Spirit. Exercise your spirit, resist the devil, run with endurance and walk in the Spirit. And keep your spirit in fellowship with the Holy Spirit so that you are becoming more like Jesus and are connected to others who are doing the same.

The blood and the word of your testimony will overcome the world, the flesh and the devil. You are empowered to overcome, and you win in the end!

Adapted from Time to Defeat the Devil by Chuck D. Pierce, copyright 2011, published by Charisma House. As the church undergoes another historical shift, Dr. Pierce reminds you to stay connected to the Head and shows you how your defeats in a former season can become victories and triumphs in the next. To order a copy, click on this link.

PRAYER POWER FOR THE WEEK OF 9-12-2011

This week encourage yourself in the Lord by declaring His Word and testifying of His goodness, faithfulness and omnipotent power on your behalf. Speak the Word over your circumstances and use it as you pray concerning every aspect of your life. Pray that Christians would repent, and unite in purpose to fast and pray for revival, the nation, and the spread of the gospel. Continue to pray for protection over our nation and our allies, as well as our military and their families. Remember Israel and ask for more laborers for the ripe harvest fields. Pray that President Obama would continue to seek God for wisdom as he leads the nation in these perilous times. 2 Chron. 7:14

To enrich your prayer life and learn how to strategically pray with power by using appropriate scriptures, we recommend the following sources by Apostle John Eckhardt: Prayers that Rout Demons, Prayers that Bring Healing, Prayers that Release Heaven on Earth and Prayers that Break Curses. To order any or all of these click here. read more

Three Wise Words From A Prophetic Granny That Saved My Life

Some say you can smell the spirit of death. I wasn’t born again when my great-grandmother was on her death bed—discerning of spirits wasn’t in operation—but I somehow still knew it was the last time I would see her.

And she had something important she wanted to tell me.

I want to share those same words with you; words with eternal implications. But I first want you to understand the spirit from which they came.

My great-grandmother was born in the 1800s and lived to be nearly 100 years old. During her lifetime seven states joined the Union. She lived through the women’s suffrage and several world-shaking wars. She also lived through the Azusa Street Revival, witnessed the rise of a young Billy Graham and witnessed the assassination of Martin Luther King Jr.

Mama Norris, as she was affectionately known by hundreds, was also a pillar of the church. She helped plant a handful of churches in the small Florida town she called home. (I still have her Bible in my room and relish to read all of the Scriptures that she underlined; Scriptures that touched her heart.) read more

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Prepare Yourself for Change

Rosh Hashanah is one of the highest holy days on the Jewish calendar. God works in times and seasons and never does anything haphazardly. Over the last 10 years since God first launched us into the prophetic healing ministry, I have noticed that each September has been spiritually a significant month for us. It was in September 2002 that our ministry was birthed, and with each September since God has brought a significant change and transition. September marks the first month of the original Jewish calendar, with Rosh Hashanah marking the first day of the New Year. The Jewish feasts and holy days mark important times and seasons in the Spirit. God still works in line with His original calendar. read more

Taste and Feed

Mrs. Smith has actually been the premier apple pie maker in our home. My wife makes the best coconut cream pies in the world from scratch, which is the only way I will have pie. Since I don’t like apple pie, it never bothered me to just let Mrs. Smith handle that area. read more

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What God Wants for America

This is the third and final article from our recent Are You Ready? video series. In the first two articles we looked at how God warns and deals with nations in great sin, then at what God has been saying to America about the economy, natural disasters and what's to come if America does not change. We saw that America is like a prodigal raging down a path of self-destruction. Today we share what we believe is God's solution for America—what it will take to turn our country from its current path of destruction back to God and His restoration. read more

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The Key to Contentment

Psst ... need a clue? Check your heart.

Are you a content, satisfied, joyful Christian? If you are, can you say that you are consistently content, satisfied and joyful? I know few Christians who are consistently content. I used to be one of the discontent.

I grew up in an abusive situation and experienced a lot of disappointment, discouragement and discontentment because of it. For many years I believed good things wouldn’t happen to me and that it was better to expect nothing so I wouldn’t be disappointed. Well, it didn’t work, and I was still miserable anyway. See, I was expecting nothing, and nothing is what I got.

It was a breakthrough for me when I realized that God truly loves me unconditionally and has good plans for my life. He wants to bless me and be good to me. But He also wants me to trust Him and put my expectation in Him so He can do great things in my life. read more

Beware: A Prophetic Warning for the End-Time Church

Beware. It’s prophetic word of warning to be on your guard; a verbal alert that danger lies ahead. But are modern-day Christians bearing in mind the Scriptural admonishment to “beware” in these last days?

Current news headlines warn us to beware of the stock market; to beware of partisan politicians; to beware of Muslim extremists and so on, and so on, and so on. To be sure, society offers us so many ominous cautions that it’s easy to see how men’s hearts could fail them for fear as a sinful world waxes worse and worse (Luke 21:26).

Although godless fear mongers often issue notices to “beware” that are motivated by greed and power, there is wisdom in warnings that originate from a pure and godly source. And the New Testament is full of such red alerts. Beloved, there are flashing sirens throughout the Word of God to warn us of danger all around—but the first place we need to look is within our own hearts.

Listen, much is written about the Beatitudes, as well it should be. (The Beatitudes are the foundation of kingdom living.) But the Bible also warns us to "walk circumspectly, not as fools but as wise, redeeming the time, because the days are evil” (Eph. 5:15-16). Walking circumspectly means to consider all circumstances and possible consequences. So when the Bible says to “beware,” we should abandon our pride and receive the word. read more

The Ominous Handwriting on America’s Wall

An earthquake rattles Washington, D.C., and a fierce storm ravages the East Coast. Is God speaking to us?

I’m not a doomsday prophet, and I don’t believe every hurricane, earthquake or drought is God’s judgment. But I did pause to ponder the significance of the freakish 5.8-magnitude quake that jolted the East Coast last week. The White House was evacuated, the Washington Monument was closed indefinitely because of cracks, and the National Cathedral’s central tower was seriously damaged.

Does anybody else find that slightly spooky? read more

Are You Stuck in Between?

Have you ever been stuck? If you’ve ever driven a 4- or 5-speed car and tried to shift gears you know what I mean. It’s not always easy. Sometimes it can be frustrating and what is meant to help propel you to another place instead hinders your journey. read more

The Uncomfortable Reality of Hell

Francis Chan’s book Erasing Hell is a prophetic reminder that we can’t compromise the gospel.

California pastor Francis Chan is one of my heroes, partly because he has given most of his book royalites—reportedly $2 million—to charity. Another reason I admire him: He’s written a new book about hell at a time when many Christians are questioning the idea of eternal punishment. The guy has some chutzpah.

His new book Erasing Hell (David C. Cook) is a direct response to Love Wins, the controversial book by celebrity pastor Rob Bell of Michigan. While Bell’s book flirts with universalism and suggests that a loving God would never send anyone to hell, Chan’s message is blunt and biblical—yet without a hint of self-righteousness. read more

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The Battle for Britain

Editor's Note: This short but noteworthy prophetic word about the recent riots across England is from Sharon Stone, European apostle for Christian International Ministries, an organization pioneered by Bill Hamon of Santa Rosa Beach, Fla. She relayed this message to Hamon upon being asked what the Lord was showing her about the volatile situation.

"Due to the imminent collapse of society, we regret to announce we are closing at 6 pm tonight." This notice was written on a sandwich shop window during England's riots and looting. Here we have natural prophetic voices and spiritual prophetic voices blending throughout this disorder, declaring a broken society where an entitlement mentality based upon excessive benefits has led to criminality. read more

How to Set the Atmosphere in Your Home

None of us wish to leave work, return from college, or visit our family and walk into a lion's den of anger, a fiery furnace of strife, or an atmosphere of tension. I suggest there are four methods that can help you make your home a dwelling place of peace and joy. read more
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It's Time to 'Finish Well'

 Editor's Note: Ken Malone shared this prophetic word with us, which was given during a recent meeting in Tampa, Fla., and judged to be for America and the American church. It is about the ending of a season from June until the end of September 2011 and of the Lord's ekklesia entering a new era beginning in October that will position the church for the future.

June through September 2011 are finishing months—months in which the body of Christ must finish well. Beginning the first of October (which is Rosh Hashanah), we will move into a new era. read more

What We Must Learn From the Zachery Tims Tragedy

God has something sobering to say to us through the death of this popular preacher.

Zachery Tims’ story had a great beginning. As a young man he met Jesus and was saved from a life of crime and drugs. He and his wife, Riva, moved from Baltimore to Orlando, Fla., in 1996 to launch a church that aimed to restore families and pull teens out of trouble. New Destiny Christian Center grew fast, mostly because of Tims’ passionate preaching. He was soon a regular on Christian television.

But things unraveled in 2009 when Tims was caught carrying on a yearlong affair with a stripper he met in France. He admitted to an “indiscretion” and got a few weeks of counseling, but he didn’t take serious time off for rehabilitation. Riva divorced him for his infidelity. The billboards that once featured photos of the happy couple were changed. By 2011 the roadside ads featured a shot of Tims by himself, with this slogan: “A Family Church Meeting Family Needs.” read more

Don't Give Up!

If you’re accustomed to praying in the power of Holy Spirit, you’ve probably experienced seasons of spiritual warfare. Sometimes it may seem as if all hell is breaking loose—literally.

People may seem to get mad at you for no reason. Others may begin gossip campaigns. Your car breaks down and the kids act up. Your husband says you are spending too much time in prayer. Your friends tell you to back off—that you’re just no fun anymore. In these seasons, problems can feel as though they are pouring into your life from every angle, and you can end up feeling misunderstood, confused, rejected and alone. read more

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What the Debt Crisis Means for the American Church

By the time many of you receive this, Congress may have found a solution to the current debt-ceiling crisis. The immediate danger may be averted—temporarily.

The real issue, however, isn't the budget, the debt ceiling or anything else, as much as it is a philosophical battle over the direction of the country. This is the root of the intransigence and increasing bitterness exhibited by both parties. read more

Face Your Fears—Even If Your Knees Are Knocking

I learned some important lessons about courage last weekend while I was dangling in midair.

I am not a daredevil. I have never bungie-jumped off a cliff, parachuted out of an airplane or spent any time in a shark cage. But when my friend Michael Cole from Christ for the Nations Institute (CFNI) asked me to speak at a leadership retreat in Ohio—and he informed me that we would be participating in a high ropes course on Saturday afternoon—I said to myself, Bring on the challenge! I thought it would be fun!

I was wrong. read more

Tap Into Your Inheritance

Few of us are privileged enough to inherit millions. Even so, those who do must wait to tap into their inheritance. That is not so with the believer. We receive a portion—or “down payment”—of what eternally awaits us when we receive the baptism of the Holy Spirit.

Jesus Christ redeemed us from the curse by His death, paid our debt and has called us to an eternal inheritance. We read in Hebrews 9:15, “And for this reason He is the Mediator of the new covenant, by means of death, for the redemption of the transgressions under the first covenant, that those who are called may receive the promise of the eternal inheritance” (emphasis added). read more

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Amazing Digital Opportunities on Charisma's 36th Anniversary

When I felt led to start a small church magazine, I barely knew what God had in store. That magazine released 36 years ago today, so I thought it was appropriate to reflect on what's happened, and more importantly what is on the verge of happening as we move boldly into the digital world.

Many of you know Charisma started at a megachurch in central Florida. I was working full time as a newspaper reporter then. My, how the media world has changed! The staff found this in the archives: a black-and-white photo of me holding a copy of The Rock, a youth newspaper that I published before Charisma. They had me hold an iPad to show the contrast. Back then I could have never imagined today's iPad! Yet I dreamed that maybe somehow we'd reach a million people. Do you know how many trees you'd have to cut down to print that many magazines?

So from 1975—before the personal computer was invented and a time when the electric typewriter I used was considered high-tech—fast-forward more than three decades and now Charisma (and our other magazines) are available in digital format that's almost beyond belief. read more

Whatever Happened to Faithfulness?

Two elderly missionaries inspired me this week to value character so I can finish well.

You’ve probably never heard of Hobert and Marguerite Howard. They didn’t write best-selling books. They aren’t rich. They don’t preach on television or pastor a megachurch. Fame was the farthest thing from their minds when they both surrendered their lives to serve God on the mission field.

In 1951 this Pentecostal couple boarded a steamship and sailed for 50 days to India, where they built orphanages, schools and churches and trained Christian leaders. This week the Howards officially retired, and I had the privilege of attending a special reception to honor them for 60 years of service. read more

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