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JFH Devotionals by J.M. Farro

What We Permit or Forbid

"I tell you the truth, whatever you forbid on earth will be forbidden in heaven, and whatever you permit on earth will be permitted in heaven." - Matthew 18:18 NLT

When I began having excruciating pain in my right leg, I mentioned it to my doctor, and he warned me that it could be from a blood clot. He was so alarmed, that he insisted that I have an ultrasound on my leg right away. Even though I had been praying about the pain in my leg from the moment it started - trusting God that it was nothing serious - hearing the alarm in my doctor's voice unnerved me. As I poured out my heart to the Lord, He reminded me that doctors are trained to think of the worst-case scenarios when they hear about their patients' symptoms. God also reminded me that Satan will always try to make things look worse than they really are.

When my ultrasound results showed that I didn't have a blood clot or anything seriously wrong, I was greatly relieved. As I gave thanks to God, I sensed Him saying to me that even though the pain in my leg was nothing serious, that didn't mean that I should have to live with it the rest of my life. I could ask and trust Him for total healing.

The Holy Spirit brought to my remembrance Jesus' words in Matthew 18:18 (NLT): "I tell you the truth, whatever you forbid on earth will be forbidden in heaven, and whatever you permit on earth will be permitted in heaven." So with the authority that God had given me in Christ, I began speaking to the pain in my right leg, forbidding it to remain in my body, and commanding it to leave forever in Jesus' name. A few days later, I noticed that the pain in my leg was gone, and I was so glad that I had not resigned myself to living with it.

Some translations of Jesus' words in Matthew 18:18 (CEV) say: "I promise you that God in heaven will allow whatever you allow on earth, but He will not allow anything you don't allow." Sometimes, when we are under attack from the forces of darkness, the Lord is waiting for us to use our authority in Christ to begin aggressively disallowing attacks on our bodies, our relationships, and our finances. That's when we have to open our mouths and forbid things like sickness and disease, and debt and lack, and strife and discord to remain. Then God Himself will back up our words, and He will push back the forces of darkness on our behalf.

Right now, you may be passively accepting things in your body, your family, or your finances that are not God's will for you. Today, ask the Lord to show you what to permit and what to forbid - and never again miss out on His very best for you!

Prayer: Lord, forgive me for the times that I have settled for less than Your best. By Your Spirit, help me to discern what You want me to allow in my life and in my family, and what You want me to forbid. Teach me how to make the most of my authority in Christ at all times, and to never passively accept the things that are not Your will. Thank You that as I stay on the attack, instead of under attack, I will experience the abundant life that is my inheritance in Christ!

- J. M. Farro


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