Even as children of the Most High King, we can become depressed or oppressed with the spirit of heaviness.
“A cheerful heart is good medicine, but a broken spirit saps a person’s strength. ~ Proverbs 17:22 NLT
One of my pastors lost both his first and second wife to cancer. He carried the loss with astounding faithfulness. And when asked how he kept from being sucked into depression with the loss of not one but both wives, his simple statement was so wise. He said , “ I just put on my praise music when that spirit of heaviness comes around, and it just carries me through it” I never forgot this! In fact – I didn’t even know then that what he practiced was actually scriptural.
Now, I am a “worship warrior”. I know the power of Praise!
Scripture calls it a languid spirit; a spirit of heaviness; a spirit of despair; a spirit of fainting. Isaiah 61:3. All speak of this spirit that the enemy lays on us – like a covering – a hidden wall of doom. But the Holy Scripture tells us how to combat the very source of this spirit of heaviness. In scripture, it is described as a ‘spirit’ – this means that it is a spirit of the enemy - The fallen one that only seeks to devour and destroy.
But God! ….
When I put praise in the search bar at Biblegateway.com, It posted 380 scriptures for praise alone. He inhabits our praise! I thot this was scriptural – this ‘inhabits’ word. I’ve made this statement for years but can’t find the scripture address to go with it. But, it’s not too far off from the truth. When I search my thesaurus, I find that ‘inhabit’ is the word that I’m looking for – scripture or not. I find words like – live in; dwell in; occupy; abide; stay; reside.
His presence occupies our praise.
I see this displayed so simply in the story of King Saul’s deliverance from a distressing spirit in 1 SAM 16:14-23.
“But the Spirit of the LORD departed from Saul, and a distressing spirit from the LORD troubled him. And Saul’s servants said to him, “Surely, a distressing spirit from God is troubling you ” Vs 14-15 NKJ
So they called for David to play his harp.
“And so it was, whenever the spirit from God was upon Saul, that David would take a harp and play it with his hand. Then Saul would become refreshed and well, and the distressing spirit would depart from him.” 1 SAM 16:23 NKJ
This was in fact one of the first – if not the first account of deliverance from an evil spirit. I find it interesting that Saul’s deliverance was immediate and it didn’t come from calling out or shouting. It was accomplished – simply and beautifully through music! This has caused me to be interested in music therapy. I see it as a universal language. Understood on all levels and by all tribes. Corporate worship is soooo powerful. Since the Lord has truly opened my eyes to this deliverance of this spirit of heaviness, I now see corporate worship through my spiritual eyes as ‘mass deliverance’. POWERFUL! I’m talking about anointed music that comes from God’s anointed; as David was.
This account of deliverance causes me to want to play music by ear, as my mama did. I want to sing by ear. Jesus said “my sheep hear my voice.” I want to hear the Holy Spirit’s lyrics for my life – that I might be refreshed and well, and free of any spirit of heaviness. I want to savor the music – to hear the highs and the lows of HIs melody.
2 Kings 3: 11-16 shares the account of the 3 kings that sought the word of the Lord through Elisha the prophet. Elisha first called for a musician – and when he listened, the hand of he Lord came upon him and he prophesied. The valley was full of water and the people drank and were refreshed, and were given victory over their enemies.
“But now bring me a musician.” Then it happened, when the musician played, that the hand of the LORD came upon him. And he said, “Thus says the LORD: ‘Make this valley full of ditches.’ Vs 15-16 NKJ
2 Chronicles 20: 13 –30 is an awesome account of ‘the battle is not yours but Gods’. The enemy became confused and was self-slaughtered because the people took their positions as was prophesied – and began praising God.
“You will not need to fight in this battle. Position yourselves, stand still and see the salvation of the LORD, who is with you, O Judah and Jerusalem!’ Do not fear or be dismayed; tomorrow go out against them, for the LORD is with you.” Vs 17 NKJ
The Joy of the Lord is your Strength. The enemy wants your JOY!!
“And Nehemiah continued, “Go and celebrate with a feast of rich foods and sweet drinks, and share gifts of food with people who have nothing prepared. This is a sacred day before our Lord. Don’t be dejected and sad, for the joy of the Lord is your strength!” Nehemiah 8:10 NLT
“The Lord is my strength and shield. I trust him with all my heart. He helps me, and my heart is filled with joy. I burst out in songs of thanksgiving.” Psalm 28:7 NLT
Sing to the Lord!
Praise the Lord!
For though I was poor and needy,
He rescued me from my oppressors.
Jeremiah 20:13 NLT
Jeremiah 20:13 NLT
When the spirit of heaviness hovers,
do you remember to fight it with praise?Do you discern its appearance?
Its physical heaviness
and command it to flee with praise?
Your song is spiritual warfare!
Praise be to the one and only
King of all Kings
King of all Kings
Jesus Christ the King!
Warrior Bride in boots