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Break Through (2 of 2)

Mike Connell

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Break Through (2 of 2)  

Sun 12 Feb 2012

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All the Philistines went up to search for David to kill him. David enquired of the Lord, saying shall I go up against the Philistines? Will You deliver them into my hand? The Lord said to David go up, doubtless I will deliver them into your hands. What would you take on this year if you heard God saying to you go for it, you can't lose?

I'm going to pick up the passage I was in (2 Samuel, Chapter 5), but I want to take it from a different perspective. [Continued from Breaking Free (1 & 2), 5th/12th Feb 2012] I want to pick up two aspects of it which is really what the message is on tonight, strength and sensitivity. Strength and sensitivity; strong and sensitive. Let's just look here and we're going to see it in the life of David and here it is, Verse 17; Now the Philistines heard that they'd anointed David king over Israel and all the Philistines went up to search for David to kill him. That's nice of them isn't it aye, real friendly like? And David heard of it and went down to the stronghold and the Philistines also went and deployed themselves in the Valley of Rephaim. So David enquired of the Lord, saying shall I go up against the Philistines? Will You deliver them into my hand? Shall I pick a fight or shall I take on the fight and will I win? The Lord said to David go up doubtless I will deliver them into your hands. That's not bad is it? Imagine having a relationship with God where He says go for it, I'm with you, you can't lose.

What would you take on this year if you heard God saying to you go for it, you can't lose? That's what He does say to us of course, go for it, you can't lose. He encourages us to stretch out - and so David went. He went to Baal Perazim and he defeated them there. There was a great battle, a great victory and then he said the Lord has broken through my enemies before me like a breakthrough of water, so he called the name Baal Perazim. In other words he said this place is the lord of breakthrough, so he changed the place.

Now I want you to see, just have a look for a moment where it was that they fought this battle. They fought it in the Valley of Rephaim. Rephaim means the giants and the Rephaim were all killed by Joshua, but these Rephaim they were giants and they were the things that frightened everyone, intimidated everyone. They were the giants who ruled the land. They were all gone. There was just the memory of them left and David turned that place of memory of giants that terrified and he turned it into a place called the Lord has broken through. Think about that, because you'll have memories, experiences, issues, thought patterns, habits, things that you need to break through this year and instead of seeing it as a giant in your life, look at it as this is where God is going to give me breakthrough this year.

Then he went on and therefore the Philistines came up again, so he didn't kill them all. They came up and had a go and they also came back to the same place. You'd think they'd have a different strategy wouldn't you aye? You'd think they'd try a different plan when the first plan failed so terribly but no, they came up to the same thing. But David had a different plan and so he inquired of the Lord and the Lord said don't go up, don't confront them. Don't go down against them like you were before, so probably they were thinking like this; they were thinking well we lined up all the army and it looked like we were going to win. Then David came out with a small group of people and gave us a licking, so this is what we'll strengthen the army and we'll get it set up even better and this time he'll never be able to do what he did. Of course what they didn't realise is David's very sensitive to the Holy Ghost. He didn't go back that way and didn't fall into the trap they set for him. He just went around behind and God said to him wait 'til you hear the sound in the mulberry trees of a wind blowing. In other words I'm going to give a supernatural sign to you that will give you a signal to have a go.

Soon they just poured out of the trees wherever they were hiding, came up behind them and wiped them out again and this time just made mincemeat of them and what a great victory. And here's the interesting thing is if you have a look at the end of - we'll start at the end then want to bring out two things in this story. Notice here it says David did as the Lord commanded, in Verse 25, and he drove the Philistines from Geba as far back as Gezer. Now I want you to see this; firstly David was anointed to be king. He was anointed to actually gain back the territories that belonged to the people of God, just like you and I have an anointing of the Holy Ghost and it's a kingly anointing just like his anointing is a kingly anointing. You have got things to conquer this year. You have got some challenges to take on. You've got some things to break through. All of us are called to advance the kingdom of God, see souls saved, people's lives changed, a community touched because if our witness, but for most people you've got to get over yourself first of all. You've got to break through the things that stop you being effective, so for some of you you're just so wrapped up in yourself you'll be thinking I've really got to break out, got to become a friendly person. I've got to become a person who's grateful, a person who's honouring, a person who connects with unsaved people and begins to start to share the gospel with them.

Now I want to show you two things about David in this story and two things that you and I need to put on because it's great to hear he got the breakthrough; I want to hear how I can get a breakthrough [laughs] and you want to hear how you can get your breakthrough this year. The first thing I want you to notice is when the Philistines came up against him, the Philistines came up against him the moment he was anointed king. In other words the spirit world knows when you are carrying anointing and you have faith in your heart and you're determined to do something for God. If you're not determined to do anything for God you're not going to be a bother for the devils. You're already out of the action, but when you make a decision I'm breaking through this year in my life, I'm breaking through this bondage, I'm breaking through this fear, I'm breaking through financially and you begin to pray, prepare your heart, get faith in your heart and a plan together and start to work the plan - you will cause the enemy to worry.

We'll teach on deliverance and on healing principles and how to flow in the power of God through this year and as we teach that if you determine not just to come to a seminar or some teaching but I'm going to flow in these things, I'm going to begin to look for a way that I can minister the life of God to others, I tell you what, you're picking a fight. So this is the thing that we often overlook. There is a very real spirit world. You can come to a meeting, get stirred up but you've got to turn your being stirred up into some actions the next day so that you begin to start to put your faith so it can be practically seen. Think about it. How could your life be different? What is limiting you right now? Is it shyness? Is it fear? Is it inferiority? Is it bitterness? Is it disappointment? Is it inadequacy? What is it? What has got your name on it, it's your giant, it's just a memory because Jesus defeated at the cross but it is holding you back in your life? Wouldn't it be great if you could take it on?

I remember when I went into a meeting, one of the first meetings with Clark Taylor and he preached a message; he just asked this question. He said if you knew that this thing that has been holding you down, holding you back, that if you just persevered and broke through in it your life would change, wouldn't it be worth the battle no matter what it was? I said yes, it would be and I went home and I changed my whole prayer pattern and I worked on myself until I got a breakthrough in that area. That breakthrough has carried me all the rest of my life. The area you break through will bring benefit for others, so David was appointed to win a war. Now here's the interesting thing, when we saw at the start of the story you notice they heard he's king and now they're coming to kill him. At the end of the story he takes over everything that they occupied, so when the devil sets out to try and knock you back, pressure you, defeat you, intimidate you or whatever, here's the thing - God has set him up for a failure so you can enlarge.

I don't see any enlargement in the Bible or even in life without having a bit of a fight, having a struggle, having to contend. You want to break through in some area this year? Want to break out of where you currently are? Want to enlarge yourself? You have to decide I'm going to put up a fight - so here's the two things I want to show you about David and I want to show just quickly how you can start to put these on in your life. You realise that if you're going to be different at the end of this year it's because you decided to make a change. Don't go praying and waiting for God to change you. He's already made the changes possible through what He did at the cross. Your role is to identify what you need to change in and do all you need to do to fulfil your part. In other words you can't just pray and wait for God to do it. That leads you under religious spirit.

So here's the two things: The moment the Philistines rose up against David and he heard it - see, notice what it says about Verse 17 - as soon as David heard it, immediately he got into a battle position. Here's the first thing about David. David had an incredible warrior spirit. He had a strength of spirit. Now here's what Jesus taught in the New Testament. He taught in Matthew, Chapter 11, the kingdom of heaven suffers violence and the violent press in and take it forcefully. That's an amazing statement to make, so what he's saying is essentially this, that in order to bring heaven to earth, in order to advance the kingdom of God, the will of God in your life, you have to be determined. You have to have strength and determination. You must decide and determine and develop the strength to continually persevere until you break through. The kingdom of heaven suffers violence. The violent press in and take it by force. Every advance I have made in my life I have had to make a determined effort that I would push in to the presence of God, that I would push in in prayer, I would begin to develop the inner strength needed to break through in that area.

Now just take one area, say for example take an area just where I was struggling some years ago just with rejection and a thing around my life that caused me to feel I was just not acceptable. I'd wrestled with that since I was very young and I realised it was affecting my life, so I realised I had to deal with it. I had to have a strategy. Now one of the first parts of the strategy is very, very simple. I learned the power of praying in tongues. See the Bible tells you when you pray in tongues your spirit is praying and when your spirit is praying it says also - 1 Corinthians 14, Verse 2 - it says that you strengthen yourself. You build up yourself, so for many of us the battles we have in our life are in the soul and in the flesh area of our life and what resists us is the flesh and demonic spirits push on us through that.

What we need is strength in our spirit to prevail and God has given us a tool, praying in tongues. So I learned to pray strongly and forcefully in tongues until I could feel my whole body energise with the life of the Holy Ghost. Now you can't just put it on. You can't just develop it overnight. You have to give yourself to prayer and so I gave myself aggressively to prayer. In fact actually what I did was I got into as well as praying in tongues, I got into singing in the spirit as well and so the early days of the church being pioneered here I spent hours every day, day after day in prayer, pushing in the spirit to grow strong in my own life. What I did was I could play a piano accordion - not very well but I played enough to be able to just flow in the spirit and worship with the music just like David did, because I saw that's what he did.

So I began to pray and I'd play aggressively and begin to flow in the spirit until the whole atmosphere would begin to shift around me. Over a course of time I developed inner strength. Now if you want to get physically strong got to go to a gym and work out, so if you're going to develop spirit strength you have to get into prayer and you learn to pray strongly. I'd just begin to build the time in prayer longer and longer and longer and as I'd begin to pray in tongues I'd could feel strength and my whole spirit would energise and come alive. A lot of what my ministry has developed over the years has been because of building this capacity inside, so I can in a moment of time arise in my spirit. Doesn't take long now - see, so there's strength in there. There's capacity developed, but it just doesn't happen. You've actually got to give yourself to praying and so praying in the spirit strengthens your spirit and what it begins to do, it provokes something because then the issues that are lying there start to surface and start to rise. So what I did was I'd pray in tongues and strengthen my spirit.

The second thing I did was I got a strategy where this thing had come from and what I needed to do, first of all what I needed to confront and so day after day I'd strengthen myself in prayer and then just speak into the spirit world and confront and decree God's word. To this day I still do it. I still daily arise, pray in tongues strongly for a season and decree God's word over my circumstances and over the world around me. You've got to learn to do that see, so strength - the Bible talks about in Ephesians 3 how he prays - in Verse 16 - that you would be strengthened with might by His spirit in your inner man, so God obviously wills that you become strong, not namby pamby. You have a spirit and your spirit is the gateway into the spirit world and the thing that shuts that or opens it is your soul, what's going on in your mind and emotions. So one of the first things you do is develop tremendous strength in prayer. That's why we from the very beginning unto this day I like to have very strong expressive praise, because it keeps at bay that religious thing that sits over people and gets them to be passive and shut down and half-hearted and lukewarm and not really engaging in their spirit with the person of God. There's a reason for it, see?

So it's no coincidence that wherever I go demons get thrust out and they get to manifest, stuff seems to happen. It's because strength has been developed. You can develop it. When I first went to Singapore, Pastor Kong Hee's one of the most greatest church builders in this day and he came along on an altar call with me, prayed for two people and he was done. He was very embarrassed and ashamed that he was tired out and exhausted, but he hadn't developed strength in his spirit and he just determined - the next year I came in there and he just carried - he prayed for hundreds with me and he was no problem. I said I see you're different this year, I see you're really hanging in there. What happened? He said I was ashamed of my lack of spiritual strength and capacity when you came last year, I made a decision that when you came next year I would have shifted and changed - otherwise you just make an excuse for why you're like you are. Think about it.

See so David, the moment the devil rose up against him, the moment the enemy rose up against - immediately he's locked into fight mode, see? There's a difference to being in fight mode or having a warrior spirit. It's something that develops inside you, you rise up in the spirit straight away so I can be very gentle and if I have any demonic encounters straight away I'm into aggressive mode just like that. See? Why not? Jesus was. You have a look at how he handled stuff. You know His first recorded church meeting ended with everyone wanting to murder Him. Think about that. That's not very nice is it, all these lovely church people want to kill Him? He was engaging the religious spirit with the things He was saying.

Second meeting that's recorded in Luke, Chapter 4, just a few verses later He had a demon start yelling out in the middle of the meeting, so He was strong. He grew strong in spirit the Bible says, so I encourage you make a determination that you will develop this capacity of David. See his immediate default response when the enemy arose was to rise up in his spirit straight away. You want to fight? He didn't pick the fight. God set the fight up for him. He didn't pick the fight - it was the Philistines started the fight and so you don't know what situation you've got coming up this year where God is getting the devil stirred up to pick a fight with you, so you can arise and break through. It's a perspective area. It's an issue of faith. It's an issue of seeing that what comes into my life God knows all about it and I've got what it takes - so before the thing comes I should be doing some preparation, building my strength so when something comes immediately default mode is to stand up.

You can't sort of develop a strong prayer thing in the middle of a crisis, you know? In the middle of a crisis you've got what you've got. It just gets revealed, that's all. So why don't we just make a decision that you're going to develop some strength in your spirit, so you begin to pray every day, begin to build your strength, build your capacity and build the flow. It's not loudly shouting, it's from within your spirit speaking strongly see? As you do it - Cheyenne, just come over here. Let me show you what I mean - just come over here. Sorry, just stand just where you are - that's right. Now you see if I just begin to arise in my spirit [Speaks in tongues 00.18.34] and I begin to say that within me is the mighty power of God, then I'm sure if I will just stretch my hand out the power of God will just touch him and he'll be touched by what's inside me. See? I didn't have my eyes open when I did that. He's got touched by something that flowed out of me because I practiced arising and believing that the power of God was in me. Same spirit in you by the way, I've just done a bit of homework, that's all. You can do homework too, then you'll be different by the end of the year. Do the homework, build strength inside you.

So you build strength - one of the ways, by speaking the word of God; one of the ways is by praying in tongues, but get praying in tongues. I love praying in tongues. I've just determined since I've been away on holiday, I came back, I'm praying in tongues. Joy's isn't at home so I pray in tongues all the time around the house now. [Prays in tongues 00.19.27] I find myself talking to myself. It's shocking really but however I'm growing in strength, ready for the new challenges this year aye - and you can do it too, strong. So the first thing you notice about it, he's strong. Now having got into a position to begin with a fight, then the next thing you notice he's incredibly sensitive and here's an interesting thing about the kingdom. Often things in the kingdom seem to be like a paradox. They seem to be opposite to one another and so you find it says Jesus taught in two places, Matthew 11 - the kingdom of heaven suffers violence, violent men take it by force - and that's that strong, assertive taking dominion. Then in Matthew 18 he makes a completely opposite statement, and you look at it and you think is this the same guy talking? But there's two truths held in balance. He said in Matthew 18, Verse 3, except you be converted and become as a child you can't enter the kingdom. So on the one hand it's being assertive, there's a place for that; on the other hand there's a place to be soft and tender and to be sensitive like a child is. Now you just think, he said unless you be converted and become like a child. You think what a little child is like. They're often quite sensitive. I can remember Sarah sneezed and her baby started crying - kids can be quite sensitive, but the thing is that a child is also quite vulnerable. See if I'm with a child they'll pour their feelings out and pour their thoughts out. They'll just come and they'll cry if they're unhappy. They'll express what's going on in their life and often we learn as Christians, we learn not to express and pour out in a tender way and a soft way and a sensitive way to the Lord, the disappointments, the struggles, the pains. There's a place to speak it out and to become vulnerable to God and intimate with Him, so the praise is very strong but the worship, we need to be very tender and so I practiced for a long time having times of being incredibly strong and then just finding the flow of the spirit where I could feel God and then I'd just weep. If you have a look at my accordion to this day it's covered with tear marks. There's the two sides that go with working with the spirit of God, very strong, very sensitive and the Bible tells us don't grieve the Holy Spirit, or in other words be sensitive to how your conduct can grieve the Holy Spirit. He particularly talks about bitterness and anger and speaking badly about other people. He said all of those things grieve the Holy Spirit and stop Him operating powerfully in your life, so notice there the two things of David; very strong and very sensitive. Strong, sensitive - strong, sensitive and you've got to learn to be able to be like that. Tough, tender, strong, sensitive.

That's real manly stuff isn't it aye? Trouble is men get the tough stuff and don't get the tender bit to go with it. They might get the very strong but don't get the sensitive side, but both of them are part of the nature of God and both of them are aspects of what made David a great man of God. You have a think, remember that verse I shared with you, except you become as a child? You have a look at it a chapter away when David starts to enter the city and what he did, he began to dance like a kid. He's leaping, whirling, dancing. That is sensitive, vulnerable. People looking at him - his wife looked at him, despised him, she was barren. He just said I do this for the Lord. He said I'm not worried about what you think - I've just got to be passionate before Him. I did itto Him - and so he was extremely expressive and sensitive to the Holy Spirit, yet at the same time he was incredibly strong and could rise up as a warrior and was never defeated in a battle.

So for this year for you to break through, don't just look at David having a story of breaking through. He broke through as a result of little breakthroughs a long way earlier in his life. You see when everyone else was doing what they were doing, he was there and he was praying strongly and he was worshipping strongly and he was being sensitive to the Holy Ghost. He had first of all a lion. Now I don't think I've ever been by a lion's cage at any time. I'm very glad that there are bars. When I went beside one of the cages one of the things started to roar at me so I walked along and it followed me along, you know - I'll go back this way here. It followed me along again; went this way and it followed me along again. I thought you want to eat me don't you? So grrrr - you know, but I thought I'm glad that it's got bars there - but can you imagine being attacked by a real lion? Now that's quite something to be able to kill a lion when you don't have much weaponry. You've got a sling - a sling can really do it but that's still a bit of a thing. I don't think I'd be wanting to throw a stone at a lion. Think about that now. So what was in David? There was just this something developed in him caring for the sheep, something developed in looking after something for someone else, this whole strength in God. He said God helped him deal with the lion and then God helped him deal with a bear. Now have you ever thought of trying to kill a bear? That's not an easy thing to kill either, but he did it. So when he faced these Philistines he had a track record of years of battle sport, so last year - have a think back about last year. What battles did you face? How did you do? Did you develop strength? Did you break through? Did you develop sensitivity - or did you wimp out a bit on the way and turn away from it and just live and accommodate it? It'll cost you something to accommodate the Philistines.

When the Gibionites were accommodating to the Philistines they said yeah, yeah, we'll make a covenant with you. We'll give you peace but we'll poke your right eye out - meaning they could never be a man of war and hold the shield and fight. Imagine you've lost your right eye, got the shield over covering your left eye - not going to see too much for battle would you? So think about that. This is the year to break out in different ways, to increase your personal influence so that requires internal changes, shifts in the heart. It requires external changes in connecting with people and determining that I will engage people so I can extend the kingdom of God. It doesn't mean you go and talk about Jesus to every person you meet. It means you go and represent Jesus to every person you meet. It means you intentionally start to look at reaching towards people with a heart to see them come into the kingdom. Wow, what a great thing that would be. What a great thing that would be that if this year every one of us broke through some limitation. Perhaps it's financial, perhaps it's attitude, perhaps it's in your skills. Whatever it is, make a decision that I will become strong. I'll become sensitive and I'm going to put a plan in place to develop both of those.

I'm going to break through some area of my life and in my influence in the community. What a great thing to do that - then at the end of the year say God gave me breakthroughs. Let me tell you about my breakthrough and what I've got the place that was once a memory of giants and defeat and I have broken through. That's the law to break through, so an area where I minister very regularly when I go overseas, I can absolutely trust God to come completely because the memory of the giant in that area, I overcame him and now I've got something fresh. I've got a breakthrough in that area of my life. So people see things happen but they don't realise there's a breakthrough that you have to make to get into that zone and you don't break through by staying in a safe zone. You break through by deciding I've got to move out of where I'm comfortable to where I'm uncomfortable and I'll do the preparation and prayer with God, then start to do that. Let's decide this year is your year of breakthrough, isn't that right? Year of breakthrough, year of breaking out, breaking through.


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