This fruit is rarely spoken about, yet without it you are unlikely to fulfil your destiny or overcome evil.
The talk here of preparing for war on the Golan Heights and the inevitable attack on Israel from the north highlights a parallel war in the spirit realm all Christians face.
In this invisible war...
GOD wants us trained, well able to crush the powers of darkness and take their ground for our King; the LORD Jesus Christ, King of Kings and LORD of Lords.
In this task God sees us as...
Unstoppable soldiers of the Most High, through His INVINCIBLE power.
Saints who win because their prayers are lethal against all works of evil, including demons, witchcraft, sorcery and magic.
Why do we have to battle anyway?
Does the LORD just want us to suffer?
It’s because He knows what is coming.
Because He loves us, He wants us to prepare NOW before it is too late.
The need is urgent.
Jesus wants us to be able to push forward in victory, even when we feel pain. To stand for Him and win.
The Holy Spirit will train us to ENFORCE the victory Jesus won on the cross.
Remember… Jesus brought us His greatest victory, dying on the Cross... ONLY through suffering desperate PAIN.
He was suffering in agony.
He pressed on though His suffering, to save others.
So now, will you?
The LORD is depending on you to do just that. (So are your loved ones by the way).
And as I have said many times before…
If you think you will win this invisible war without the help or firepower of the Holy Spirit… I’m sorry, you will lose.
Therefore it is essential to get to know the Holy Spirit for yourself. Let Him grow the special fruit I share below in your character though frankly, no one really wants to have to grow this fruit actually. It is too painful for any of us to choose for ourselves. Yet without it, we are done for.
I am talking about a fruit of the Holy Spirit rarely discussed...
The fruit of long-suffering (especially combined with patience). (Galatians 5:22 KJV).
Suffering is bad enough.
Suffering for a 'LONG' time is even worse.
So why do we have to go through seemingly continuous rounds of pain and suffering sometimes in this life anyway?
- GOD uses the chisel of long-suffering to carve the beauty of Christ-like character into your nature through the Holy Spirit. This is so OVER TIME (another reason this process must often be ‘LONG’) you BECOME LIKE JESUS in what you actually THINK, SAY AND DO.
When his work is done it becomes almost second nature in us.
This is because by the end of the process the ways of the Holy Spirit will become so deeply hardwired, embedded and etched into you, that the way you start to think, feel and act… would be just like Jesus were He living in your shoes.
Kind of like...
Holiness carved into your soul.
- So that you FULFIL God’s destiny for you without giving up because you feel bad.
If you give up just because of pain, despair or suffering, the devil has you just where he wants.
He will know all he has to do to stop you and halt your destiny dead in it’s tracks, is hit you with suffering, despair or sorrow.
He will make sure he grinds you down with it all.
On the flip side…
If you persevere under trials that are filled with sorrow or sadness and stand for GOD no matter what, your victory will be complete… and exceedingly sweet (in the end).
Seen this way your adversities could be very good for you.
Want a scripture to prove that?
Here are three...
“My brethren, count it all joy when you fall into various trials, knowing that the testing of your faith produces patience [endurance*].
But let patience have its perfect work, that you may be perfect and complete, lacking nothing.” James 1:1-5 NKJV [*emphasis added]
“You therefore must endure hardship as a good soldier of Jesus Christ.” 2 Timothy 2:3 NKJV
Here’s the final scripture (plus how to win no matter what you tribulation or armies of wickedness you face)...
These things I have spoken to you, that in Me you may have peace. In the world you will have tribulation; but be of good cheer, I have overcome the world.” John 16:33 NKJV
In this world we shall have tribulation.
It just is.
Accept it and humbly ask that Jesus GIVE YOU HIS VICTORY over the world… specifically tailored for your own special circumstances.
Then no matter what tribulation you face…
In John 16:33 Jesus is revealing YOU ARE WELCOME to overcome in HIM if you will just INVITE HIM INTO YOUR WORLD by faith.
In fact, GOD designs these circumstances so that none of us can ever overcome outside of Jesus.
That’s how it is.
NOTHING you will ever need will be outside of Jesus. The only way you will ever get it, is by getting to know JESUS therefore.
Need proof for my last statement?
How about the Apostle Peter who Jesus trusted enough to raise up the Church...
"According as his divine power hath given unto us all things that pertain unto life and godliness, through the knowledge of him that hath called us to glory and virtue:" 2 Peter 1: 3 KJV
He is inviting you to accept the work He has already done for you… tailored perfectly TODAY for what you face, so you learn to overcome whatever you face… in HIM.
He will gladly empower us to overcome as we surrender like this and get to know Him better, and trust Him more because we realise He actually is with us even in adversity and knows the way through way better than we do.
Something similar happened to me past couple of months.
We found ourselves about five weeks BEHIND schedule for the upcoming launch of the Victory Discipleship Schools and it was due to one thing…
An absolute nightmare scenario with our email systems. Never known anything like it ever.
Here’s the thing…
I know email systems inside out.
I have been running them for over twelve years, from tiny systems to large enterprise systems, yet no matter what I tried for FOUR WEEKS SOLID, night and day, we could not fix our email systems. Such a dark cloud seemed to brood over it all. The heavens seemed like brass.
We had already switched suppliers and platforms twice earlier in the year, then spent another $500.00 on a new piece of software to iron things out… yet it still didn’t work! Tech guys in two companies did not have a clue either.
Pastor John and I knew it was Satanic opposition against the school.
Four wretched weeks of not being able to fix things though was getting me down.
So I said to the LORD just before it finally got sorted…
“LORD, this email system is the heart of the whole website, the heart of the workshops, the heart of ALL you want to do in the Victory Discipleship School and free workshops. It looks like the enemy has road blocked the whole thing because these email systems just will not work, no matter what we do! What’s going on? Where is my power against all this?”
Then the LORD spoke (so nice when He does eh!).
“Don’t worry. I am using the enemy's worst, to GIVE YOU THE BEST training of all.”
“What do you mean LORD?"
“I am training you to stand fast no matter what. I am training you to STAND fast and hold the land I am giving you by faith until my reinforcements arrive. I have sent you help and it is on it’s way.
Stand still and trust me to bring you the victory. Rest in me.
MORE IMPORTANTLY I am growing a special type of fruit in you.”
“What fruit LORD?”.
“The fruit of LONG-SUFFERING.
I have been growing this fruit in you for years.
Now look back at all the years of pain and suffering you have been through and realise it was all for your good. I was in all.
Well done. You are GROWING INTO A MAN that I can trust.
Now I will be able to trust you to FOLLOW OUT MY ORDERS IN THE HEAT OF BATTLE because the fruit of long-suffering is growing up to fullness in you.
Now you will be able to destroy the enemies work through My power for My glory. You will do this even when you don’t feel like warring for me because your feelings cannot be manipulated by the enemy anymore.
Self control works along with long-suffering to help you do this.“
I answered Jesus…
“Oh. I see it all now. Thank you LORD. Sorry for worrying or doubting you.”
The second I heard the LORD I was silent.
Now I wouldn’t trade those five horrible weeks or so for anything.
I suddenly saw so clearly...
Basically without training in long-suffering, I will never make it to where I should be in GOD's Kingdom.
Jesus revealed how vital this fruit is, especially when under fire…
“And you will be hated by all for My name’s sake. But he who endures to the end [despite all suffering, trials or tribulation*] will be saved.” Matthew 10:22 NKJV [Emphasis mine*]
His brother James takes it deeper still...
“Blessed is the one who perseveres under trial because, having stood the test, that person will receive the crown of life that the Lord has promised to those who love him.” James 1:12 RSV
The Amplified version of this verse is wonderful...
“Blessed [happy, spiritually prosperous, favored by God] is the man who is steadfast under trial and perseveres when tempted; for when he has passed the test and been approved, he will receive the [victor’s] crown of life which the Lord has promised to those who love Him.”James 1:12 AMP
“Favoured by GOD.”
How do you get that favour?
By standing STEADFAST under trial, (even over many years).
This will allow the Holy Spirit to grow the fruit of long-suffering in you.
Enduring shows the LORD if you really love Him or not.
Now you perhaps you can understand why you may have had to persevere under trial for many years, (perhaps without any breakthrough even remotely in sight).
Don’t worry there is always a reason. Jesus is never late.
He will NEVER let you down.
I remember I was praying for someone close to us for 17 years.
Then suddenly after all those hard slog years of “heavens like brass, getting nowhere” types of prayer, one night at 2.00am GOD answered the simplest prayer for this person in seconds… with a totally life changing answer filled with power. Satan's work in her destroyed in seconds!
That sister was instantly delivered and has been completely different person ever since :)
So NEVER GIVE UP.
Don’t worry... Jesus will arrive smack on time, when perseverance has done it’s perfect work in you so that you lack nothing for what GOD is calling you into (James 1:1-5).
In the meantime, crack on enduring whatever you have to.
Remember, ever sorrow, all long-suffering you go through is like an investment in the heart of Jesus, as long as you turn to Him in it with thanksgiving.
“In everything give thanks, for this is the will of GOD in Christ Jesus concerning you.” 1 Thessalonians 5:8 NKJV
The LORD is WITH YOU!
Be strong dear one. GOD is working all things together for your good. Trust Him to do just that in everything you face. Steadfast like this you will also defeat all of Satan's forces arrayed against you too and win because your life is "hid with Christ in GOD." (Colossians 3:3).