Strongholds are merely incorrect thinking patterns. They are patterns in our minds that are programmed to think contrary to the truth. Strongholds occur when you allow your mind to wander and take no control over your thoughts.
You don’t have to be physically tied up to be bound by your enemy; all he has to do is tangle up your mind. Then he can sit back and watch as you tie yourself up, over and over again with the same old mistakes! You can even make yourself physically sick when your mind is sick. However, if you can free your mind, you can free everything in your life. When your head gets straightened out, everything else will follow. The only way to replace sickness is with wholeness.
When an athlete trains, he lifts his foot and pushes it against a wall. Of course, he knows there is no way for him to move that wall! He continues to push against something that he knows can’t move. It looks stupid, unless you understand the purpose. He is not trying to push the wall; he is trying to stretch the muscle. The time has come for you to stretch again!
It wasn’t really about moving the object you pushed up against, it was about moving you. You must flex your mind to see what lies ahead for you. What are you going to do with the time you have left?
The root of the transformation you desire is grounded in renewing your mind. You cannot renew yourself if you continue to hold onto old garbage. Dragging around old, tattered garments will keep you from walking forward and soaring toward your destiny. There must be a cleaning out and a cutting away of the old before there is moving forward, and that takes time. Stop waiting on God to do for you what He has already empowered you to do for yourself. Half of your battle is in starting!
It takes time for a silkworm to turn into a butterfly. It takes time for an acorn to become a mighty oak tree. It will take time for you to transform as well. Sometimes you will discover that you have more to clean out than you were aware of. Old patterns of thinking can linger and stick to the sides of your mind like cobwebs in the attic. God knows how to prepare a new door to open for you, but you have to be careful, for, as Alexander Graham Bell said, “Sometimes you stare so long at a door that is closing that you see too late the one that is open.”
I heard a story about a female dog that was hit by a car. Her leg was badly broken leaving her with a severe limp so that she continually dragged one of her back legs behind her. Later on, she had puppies that were all perfectly healthy. However, when the puppies began to walk, the owner noticed that each of them also limped in exactly the same way. Despite the fact that they were physically fine, they walked just like their mother! The puppies were dragging around something that was perfectly able to function!
When you are renewing your mind and removing the waste, you have to be very careful. You have to continually take inventory to analyze the many things that you are doing. You may be living out certain patterns because of the environment you come from. It may be that there is nothing wrong with your hind leg; it’s just that those who came before you had a limp. You must renew your mind so those encoded norms can be replaced by “new normals.” The key to ongoing victory is time spent with God and His Word on a daily basis. This is first base in building your personal manifesto!
You will see the fruit of hope and peace come as you develop forward thinking. In the process of transforming your mind, you need to stop living in the past, embrace the present, and start making preparations for where you are going in the future. Quit wasting time building up defenses based on where you have been.