The Redemptive Gift of Prophet Stronghold and Prophet’s Natural Strength
The redemptive gift of prophet stronghold comes from a perversion of the prophet’s natural strength and drive is to “see into,” to discern. They see what makes a thing work. This can include everything from discovering the problem with a broken antique clock, to developing a new, unique way to do evangelism with an unreached people group, to seeing motives behind people’s interactions and why injustice is occurring.
The Redemptive Gift of Prophet Stronghold
The stronghold occurs from a wrong relationship with discernment and problem solving. The highest use of discernment is for agape – sacrificial love for the other person’s benefit.
There are 3 vulnerabilities common to man:
- To promote ourselves
- To protect ourselves
- To provide for ourselves
If the prophet is feeling vulnerable and needing to protect his heart, he will gravitate to relying on his natural strength. So he takes action — making his gifting flow in his own strength for his own benefit.
I knew of a man that had a falling out with every church leader he had ever worked with so he began to carry a staff everywhere he went, even walking through airports with it. He did this as a sign of the Old Testament prophet. He felt this to be a physical representation of God’s angry judgement toward the impure motives he saw in church leadership. This was far from seeking to intercede and restore in meekness, considering himself lest he also fall. It was expressing Old Testament anger and flowed from unresolved wounding he carried in his heart.
The prophet’s weakness is in trying to fix what God has not called them to fix. Prophets tend to continually look for the design in things, both in principles and in people. They seek to get their needs met in this way when trusting God in an area of their lives becomes difficult.
We All Battle the Redemptive Gift of Prophet Stronghold at Some Level
We all have to be able to “see into” and problem solve at some level. Most of us have a career based on some skill of problem solving. Nurses, teachers, trash collectors, and professional athletes all have gained a skill that serves society in some way and solves a problem. However, the minute our identity is rooted in our skill rather than in being a child of God, we are battling this stronghold. We are no longer using our skill to the glory of God but to get our own ego needs met.
The key to overcoming all strongholds is to put them on the altar as a living sacrifice. (Romans 12:1) It’s been said that the problem with living sacrifices is that they keep jumping off the altar. This simply means sanctification is a lifelong process of growing ever deeper in our capacity to trust God to meet every need that arises and not resort to our own strength. It’s a laying down of the gift and taking up His strength instead of ours.
Prophets have to learn to use their discernment for intercession and greater brokenness. Instead of being on the sidelines pointing out problems, they need to be working in community to help bring forth an answer. I know prophets who love God but do not attend church because of all the problems they see there. I also know nurses who judge other nurses for “not doing it right,” and carpenters who feel that they alone are the only ones who do quality work, and missionaries and teachers and engineers and so on that battle thinking believing they have the insight others do not and allowing that to hinder community.
All of us need to put our discernment and judgment on the altar and lay our lives down in prayer and service. Unfortunately it’s just harder for prophets to do that than the other gifts.
Next week I’ll cover the Redemptive Gift of Servant stronghold.