One of the major strongholdsin people in Western society (my personal belief having ministered to many and myself being a victim) is Insignificance and Inferiority. The sense that you are somehow lower in order and of less value than others.
For Christians it means that we assume that this is the reason why God can’t or won’t move through us and in us like he does with other people. It justifies why we always get short-changed, particularly on the spiritual front… Because, after all, that other person is better than me and that is why he got the job, God listens to his prayers, his marriage is great etc etc.
Some years ago, I had a major release in this area. It powerfully changed me. In my previous life, I had been a litigation lawyer. I was used to being adversarial in my work-life. If you had accused me of being shy of confrontation, I would have denied it, and then some.
One day, on an overseas ministry trip, I realised I had some mysterious block that was preventing me from ministering. And so I got some ministry and this “hindrance” went immediately. I was released in supernatural ministry. It was wonderful.
But there was more. I got home to a situation at church that needed to be confronted and in that moment I realised two things – one – this was something I generally avoided – until that moment it was a complete blind spot for me! And two, I knew could now just go in and talk this through. Which I did. And the matter was resolved from all sides. And amazingly the church, which had plateaued at that point, almost immediately started growing and increased by 25% in a short period of time.
Amazing. What a blessing.
Since then I’ve been through the stronghold numerous times. I teach it regularly, it forms part of the 1 Year Discipleship Course at the School of Supernatural Evangelism, I know all there is to know about it.
And then a few weeks ago, going through the notes again with our students while a friend led the session, it was like going through a foreign subject. I was at a level of personal revelation, vulnerability and insight about this subject and how it affected me, that was deeper than I have ever known.
Often, we want to be free of strongholds, not simply for their own sake (after all, who wants strongholds in their lives?!) but for the benefits we gain. All I knew was that I was at a place where I didn’t care where it might lead, I simply wanted to be free of this thing. I felt weary of battling this curse over me and just wanted rid. (Having experienced it, I feel this is an insight into where we want our hearts to be if we are to receive powerfully deep healing – freedom for freedom’s sake, not for what we can get out it.)
I found myself identifying (maybe for the first time I was being truly honest and “acknowledging”) which beliefs and behaviour patterns affected me. They were patterns that I had never acknowledged before; things that I was possibly too proud to acknowledge, like at some deep level, I didn’t feel like a “real man”. Where did that come from?! But, lurking somewhere in a dark corner, it was there.
I prayed them all through (and there were quite a few!) and received ministry in our breakout group. After prayer my stomach felt “emptier“, often a sign that demons have left. I was experiencing a deeper level of peace in my inner being.
The following week, I noticed relationships were different – I related differently in subtle ways and they related back differently, as though at some deep, unconscious level they were responding to changes in me.
I didn’t believe I was particularly self-conscious before, but clearly there was a deeper, darker aspect to that than I realised because I felt a very foundational freedom from self-consciousness – a freedom that was much closer to my core identity, and far less surface than previous ministry had touched. As a result I was reacting differently to situations and currently am experiencing way less internal friction in simply doing life.
Truly, a very unexpected and welcome healing! God is good!
The freedom Christ gives us is worth our investment.
Read Part 2 here