Isaiah 61:3 (NKJV): "To console those who mourn in Zion, to give them beauty for ashes, the oil of joy for mourning, the garment of praise for the spirit of heaviness; that they may be called trees of righteousness, the planting of the Lord, that He may be glorified."
This scripture beautifully describes what we can expect when we abide in Christ. In this world evil things happen every day, things that are designed to break us down and bring us to a place of despair and hopelessness. Praise God for His Word! It always has a way for us to combat any evil thing that comes our way. Every spirit of heaviness or discouragement can be cast off us and replaced with a garment of praise... Which is appropriate since praise has the power to liberate us from any oppressive work of darkness. According to Psalm 22:3, God inhabits and is enthroned on the praises of His people. This means His Presence - which is fullness of joy, peace and a love that conquers all things - is released as an overwhelming force when we praise Him. It's probably worth considering that since the Presence of God dominates our praises, the spirit of heaviness, discouragement and fear is given permission and authority to dominate our emotions when we choose to complain and speak in agreement with the troubling circumstances. So, wise up to your enemy's tactics; refuse to surrender to the temptation to complain and grumble. Decide to focus on the faithful character of your God and His Word, letting praise fill your heart and words. This way you will see His Presence dominate, shift the atmosphere and work all things for your good!
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