It was 6:40am on a Thursday morning in September when the alarm startled me awake.
Ugh, “I’m late!”
I quickly rushed to the other side of the house to wake the sleepy boys for school.
Starting with the slowest mover in the top bunk I stroked the head and spoke softly, no response. I gently laid hold of the arm tucked just under the covers, no response. I shake a little harder and realize there is a stiffness and a coldness to that arm that should be pliable and warm. Moments felt like centuries creeping past as I realized that this boy, my boy had gone to Heaven during the night. What ensued over the next hours, days and weeks was a tornado of torturous thoughts. Swirling debris of destruction over my mind and heart.
“Why didn’t I?” “What if I?”“How could I move?”
My mind became an instant catalogue of all my worst mistakes and a instant replay of my deepest fears becoming reality.Every 6:40am on the alarm clock awakened all the horrific memories of that day. But God, who is rich in mercy reminded me that those thoughts of horror, condemnation and fear were NOT of Him. He reminded me of my years at home where torturous dreams of darkness and bondage kept me from sleeping for what seemed like months. Until, my Mom shared a secret weapon stored in the armory of her faith…..
There is a Gospel song that brings me to tears and hand raising worship every time. It’s called “Praise Him in Advance” by Marvin Sapp.
The Word of God is a sword that destroys every stronghold.
Finally, be strong in the Lord and in the strength of his might. Put on the whole armor of God, that you may be able to stand against the schemes of the devil. For we do not wrestle against flesh and blood, but against the rulers, against the authorities, against the cosmic powers over this present darkness, against the spiritual forces of evil in the heavenly places. Therefore take up the whole armor of God, that you may be able to withstand in the evil day, and having done all, to stand firm. Stand therefore, having fastened on the belt of truth, and having put on the breastplate of righteousness, and, as shoes for your feet, having put on the readiness given by the gospel of peace.16 In all circumstances take up the shield of faith, with which you can extinguish all the flaming darts of the evil one; and take the helmet of salvation, and the sword of the Spirit, which is the word of God, praying at all times in the Spirit, with all prayer and supplication. To that end, keep alert with all perseverance, making supplication for all the saints…Ephesians 6:10-18
The secret is how do I practically raise a sword and demolish the fear, the jealousy, the condemnation, the lust, and the pride?
We begin with acknowledging the power of God and then we force ourselves to praise!
The secret weapon my Mom revealed to me was the power of praise. Because the enemy of our souls, the accuser of our minds can NOT stand the genuine praise of Jesus!
Satan must flee when we praise and like Abraham we will grow in our faith as we praise God! (Romans 4:20)
Maybe this is why the Psalms refer to it as a “sacrifice of praise”. Because it’s the last thing our hearts and minds want to do, but we must raise a praise to slay the chains that bind us!
I recently studied Psalm 118 and the phrase that kept sticking with me was, “In the name of the LORD, I cut them down”! (Verses 10-18)
In addition to praising, dear faithful Sisters searched the Word for me and found Scriptures that had references of 6:40. I printed them and plastered them on the wall beside my bed. Because when I was too weak to raise my sword, I resolved to raise my eyes to the wall. I resolved to limp to the Lord of Hosts and allow Him to fight for me!
Dear One, raise your praise today and in the name and strength of the Lord, cut all those wicked thoughts down.
In the darkness we can’t remember what to praise Him for. So here is a small list to get you started:
Praise Jesus, You have eyes to see this blog post!
Praise Jesus, You can read!
Praise Jesus, You are breathing!
Praise Jesus, You had fingers to click your computer or phone to view this post!
Praise Jesus, You have been given another day to love others and live for Him!
Praise Jesus! Let all the earth praise the name of the LORD! And I’m His name, we cut it down!
Angela and her husband currently live in GA, USA. They have four children at home and one married in 2018. Angela is passionate about ministry to women and loves to meet new friends. She’s been teaching the Bible for over 25 years and desires to encourage women to study the Word for themselves and see the beauty of Jesus in their lives. Follow along with her on facebook at Angela Wheeler Boeckman and on Instagram @acwboeckman. Thanks for reading!