Today as I sought God on what to pray about and meditate on I had no clue until I received a phone call from a loved one. Immediately after I hung up, I heard the words, "God Breaks Cycles."
No matter how hard we try to avoid it, our past impacts our present and sometimes our future. Much of our behavior and thinking comes from family influence and our environment. Some families have a history of significant talents and accomplishments passed down through generations. Some families have generations of dysfunctional behaviors such as addiction, anger, defeatism, divorce, selfishness, and laziness. We can develop physical afflictions like high cholesterol and diabetes from eating habits we learned growing up.
God created the family system as a beautiful extension of His image, but sin has damaged what God created. Satan has been using strongholds in his arsenal of destruction since the first family, Adam and Eve. The word "stronghold" can be defined as a fortress or hold. It gives the idea of a great compound with high walls that seem impossible to penetrate. I believe destroying the family is at the top of Satan’s destruction list. He knows that if he can destroy the family, or at least change its purpose, then he can destroy a nation.
Strongholds are built from wounds from past hurts. Emotional wounds can be difficult to overcome. From experience, I know how difficult it is to honor those who have wounded us. Without the transforming power of the Word of God applied to our lives and forgiveness, it is impossible to overcome. The devil knows this, and he will try to deepen his attack on your family and make you want to quit. His mode of apparatus is divide and conquer: divide the parents, divide the children, divide the family, and he can conquer a nation.
Satan’s first stronghold of the family is selfishness. If the devil can get you to believe that your family was designed for your pleasure and when you tire of them, you can just leave. You can stop being friends with someone, but you can’t stop being related to someone. If he can get you to believe that you need to be looking out for number one and pleasing of yourself; if he can get you to believe that you would be better off not listening to God and His word, then he has got you. This is selfishness, and this is a stronghold that the devil places in the lives of the family. It creates disorder. It creates disunity.
Satan also uses strongholds of rebellion to tear down families. If rebellion is allowed to run rampant, there is chaos. When a parent rebels against God’s command, there is chaos. When children rebel against parents, there is chaos. This is Satan’s tool. He knows that if he can keep your family in chaos and keep your life in chaos, then he knows he can keep your mind more on your problems and confusion than on God. The stronghold of rebellion must be broken.
Unresolved anger is another tool Satan uses to destroy our destiny with God. We must resolve our anger. We must not carry a grudge. We must deal with it. Actually, the Bible says we need to deal with anger before the sun goes down. If we don't, then it can lead to murder. Cain was so angry at God and his brother that he killed him (Genesis 4:1-16). Anger makes us say things that, under normal circumstances, we would never say. Anger blinds us and causes us to feel self-pity. It makes us feel that the entire world is against us. Oh, how blinded we become when we allow the devil to build strongholds in us.
The Bible says that when the Israelites came to the city, the inhabitants of Jericho shut the city up in fear. They were afraid. You see, no matter what strongholds the devil has on your family, the devil is afraid of the Lord. He knows that there is one that is greater and stronger than he is. He knows the verse "Greater is he that is in me than he that is in the world". The Israelites marched around the walls once every day for six days until the walls fell. (Joshua 6:1–27)
If we do not confront, let go of, and seek God for deliverance from this stronghold, it will block you from God's best for you. For years, I have been praying for God to break some generational cycles in me and my children. He has been doing just that, but there is much more that must be done. I praise and trust that He will complete the good work He has started in healing my children and me. It has been an intense battle. It is a process, and sometimes we will lose the battle, but we will win the war if we don’t give up.
I don’t know what will happen with my children. I am praying and hoping that they will walk with the Lord, but I will tell you if they are drawn in by the hands of Satan, it won’t be without a fight. All hell may come against me, but as long as there is breath in me, I will fight the forces of darkness with the Word of God. Isaiah 54:17 "No weapon that is formed against thee shall prosper."
Today I want to encourage you that God breaks generational cycles, but we have a part to play too. If we want to break generational health concerns from ourselves, we can't simply say, "Generational curse of diabetes, I command you to go in Jesus' name," and then eat an abundance of food items that contribute to diabetes. If you want to break emotional behavior cycles, ask the Holy Spirit to lead you through the healing process. Make sure you start with forgiving anyone involved. Through prayer, God can break cycles of generational cycles of family dysfunction. Don’t give up, cave in, and quit. God will do it!
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