Joel Osteen - Your Time For Release
I want to talk talk to you today about Your Time For Release. We all have things that come against us and try to hinder us and keep us from our destiny. Can be a sickness, depression, child that's off course. Sometimes we're dealing with things that have been past down, dysfunction that's been in our family line for generations, addictions, low self-esteem, poverty. It's easy to accept it and think that's our lot in life, but God didn't create you to live restricted, bound or broken. That may be the way it's been, but that's not the way it's going to stay. God has already ordained these times of release, times where he looses you from what's holding you back, times where he breaks chains, frees you from the sickness, delivers you from oppression, stops the dysfunction.
Yes, we all go through seasons of struggle, we have to endure and do the right thing when it's hard. Can seem like the opposition is winning, it will always be held back, we've done what we can on our own, but we're not able to change. The good news is: you're not on your own. Jesus came to take off of you what the enemy put on you. He came to free you from what's bound you, to loose you from what's restricting you. Everything that's limiting you has no right to stay, you are God's property. You're about to come in to supernatural release, something you couldn't make happen.
Looks like it's permanent, thoughts will tell you, "You'll always struggle with that sickness. You'll always be addicted. You'll always be broke, depressed, angry". No, get ready, release is coming: release from sickness and chronic pain. Release from poverty and lack. Release from depression and anxiety. Release from loneliness, unfulfilled relationships. Release from generational dysfunction. Those forces are being broken right now. You're being released into freedom, released into wholeness, released into abundance. You're going to see beauty for the ashes, joy for the mourning. It's a new day, chains are breaking, walls are coming down. It's your time for release.
Three Hebrew teenagers wouldn't bow down to the king's golden idol. He was so upset, he had their hands and feet bound with cords. The guards tied them up, wrapped that rope around again and again, made sure they couldn't get free. Then they threw them into a fiery furnace. Was so hot, when the guards put them in, the guards were killed. Seemed like an impossible situation, teenagers were bound, no way to get loose in the natural, this would certainly end their life. But in that furnace the fire didn't burn their skin, didn't burn their clothes, didn't burn their hair. The only thing that burned were the cords that had them bound. God was showing us: there's no bondage the enemy puts on you that he can't break. There's no addiction, no depression, no sickness that he can't free you from.
Yes, there will be opposition. The enemy will try to bind, restrict. Sometimes it seems permanent. Medical report is not good, we think, "Man, I'm restricted by this cancer. My child's off course. This addiction, this anger, this loneliness, it's holding me back". Those cords are only temporary. Your time of release is coming. The same God that burned up the ropes that were holding them captive is about to burn up what's restricting you. It's significant that God could have brought them out that fire still bound up. When the king checked on them, could have seen them still alive, brought them up then untied them. That still would have been a great miracle, but God on purpose caused the cords to be burned off. He wanted us to see him not just as a God who protects, but as a God who releases, a God who frees from oppression, a God who breaks bondages, a God who unties cords that have confined you.
Maybe it's people that are holding you back, unfair situations or injustice. Like these teenagers you've done the right thing, but opposition came, and now it's like your hands are tied, it's limiting your destiny. The good news is: there's a fourth man in that fire with you. Not only to protect you, that's great, but he's also there to free you. The enemy tried to use the fire to stop your purpose, but God's going to use it to burn up what's limiting you. Release is coming, freedom is coming, healing is coming, breakthroughs are coming. "I don't know, Joel, I've had this anxiety a long time. These people at work have always been against me. Nobody in my family is really successful". No, you have to receive the release. It's not going to happen if you're talking to yourself out of it, filled with doubt. Victory starts in our mind. Tune all that out, get in agreement with God, "Father, I believe it's my time for release. That every force that's holding me back is being broken. That you are taking off of me what's trying to stop me".
I talked to a young man, as a little boy he had a dream to become an engineer. Very bright, had these big goals. His father passed at a young age, he was raised by a hardworking single parent mother. She did her best, but she wasn't around that much. He started running with the wrong crowd, got involved in drugs, grades went down and didn't get the scholarship he was hoping for. He went to junior college, but he would hardly show up for class. He ended up dropping out. For 16 years he was addicted, depressed, broken and lonely. He had accepted that was his lot in life. He knew it was his fault, he didn't make good choices.
He's flipping through the channels one night, and he heard me talking about how you're never too far gone, how God can free you, and put you back on course, and still make something great out of your life. Something came alive on the inside. He'd never heard anyone speak faith over him. That night he gave his life to Christ. Not only did he feel that hopelessness lift off of him, but he was completely freed from that addiction. He had tried to break it again and again, no success, but in one moment he was free. What happened? He came in to his time of release. What you couldn't do on your own, God is going to make happen for you. He's going to take off of you what was put on you: the addiction, the shame, the defeat may be too much for you, but it is not too much for our God.
He knows what you struggle with, he sees what's hindering you, what's keeping you from your dreams. Seems like it's permanent, it could never change, but like this young man your time of release is coming, freedom is coming, healing is coming, your dream is still coming. Things that have hindered you are being broken, cords that abound you, addictions, bad influences, generational dysfunction, those things that have you tied up are being burned off. God's about to step in and do what you could not do. You're going to feel a supernatural strength, a power that enabled you to break bondage, favor that catapult you ahead.
This young man went back to school and he just graduated with his engineering degree, and he already has a position lined up at a big company. He's engaged to a beautiful young woman, they're here at Lakewood every week. He said, "Joel, I never dreamed after all I've been through I could be this happy, this blessed, this fulfilled". That's what happens when God takes off of you what's hindering you, when he frees you you from what's restricting you. You're not doing life on your own, there is a power at work that's for you that is far greater than any power that's trying to stop you.
Now, sometimes we find ourselves in the furnace like these teenagers: tied up, we can't get loose on our own, but that fourth man will show up. Not just to protect you, but he's going to free you, he's going to break addictions, break lack and struggle. He has these times of release, where he's going to do what only he can do.
Luke chapter 13, Jesus was in a synagogue teaching, and he saw a lady that had been sick for 18 years. She was bent over and not able to stand up. I'm sure after that long she thought it was permanent. It was the sabbath, they weren't supposed to do any work on that day. The religious leaders were standing there watching Jesus to see what he would do. He said to them (Luke 13:16), "Should not this woman, whom Satan has bound, be loosed from this sickness"? He said the enemy has bound this woman, the enemy has put something on her that's restricting her, and keeping her from enjoying her life.
You need to see sickness and anything that's limiting you as not welcome, it's on foreign territory. Your body is a temple of the Most High God. Jesus went over, said to her (Luke 13:12), "Woman, you are loosed from your sickness". Instantly she was healed. She stood up straight first time in 18 years. That's what happens when God releases you from what the enemy put on you: healing comes, freedom comes, victory comes.
There may be things that have you bound: a sickness, an addiction, a problem at work that won't seem to go away. You've tried to get free, nothing has helped. God is saying to you what he said to this woman: you are loosed from what's hindering you. This is your time of release. That sickness is not permanent, you are loose from that cancer. Depression is not how your story ends, you are loose from that depression. You are loose from the addiction, loose from low self-esteem, loose from family's turmoil. This is a new day and God is doing a new thing.
Now, receive the release. You may not feel any different, you may not see anything change yet, you have to walk by faith and not by sight. "Father, thank you that I am healed. Thank you that I am free. Thank you that my child is on course. Lord, I believe that every bondage has been taken off of me". What's significant is it wasn't up to the woman to get free from what had her bound, she had tried for 18 years. In her own strength, her own efforts she wasn't able to, but God has these moments where he says "Enough is enough, I'm going to free you from what's hindering you".
I believe today is your time of release. You're going to see things begin to improve. What's been a struggle in the past is not going to be a struggle anymore. You are being loose from lack, "Can't seem to get ahead", "Take one step forward two steps backward", it's like that spirit of "Not enough" follows you around, today that bondage has been broken, you're going to lend and not borrow. What you touch will prosper and succeed. Good brakes are going to find you. You will be the head and not the tail. How did this happen? In your own power? No, God stepped in and said, "You are loosed from that bondage".
Friend of mine was perfectly healthy in his 40s, has a beautiful wife and children. He went in for a routine checkup discovered that he had stage four cancer. Flew to MD Anderson here in Houston, got a second opinion, they confirmed it, gave him less than two years to live. He put up scriptures all over his house like my mother did, "I will live and not die. God is restoring health back unto me". He knew that God was in control, that he had the final say. He took the treatment, and it slowed things down, but the prognosis still wasn't good. And he was scheduled to come to town for surgery, and they were hoping to remove some of the cancer and possibly give him more time. The specialist made it very clear: they were only talking about a few more months.
I spoke with him the day before the surgery, and he was very concerned. He was a believer, but you know, he's a little bit worried. The next day he called me and could hardly speak. He said, "Joel, when they opened me up they couldn't find any cancer in my body. The doctors were totally baffled. The main specialist who comes from a different faith wrote on his chart: this had to be divine intervention". When God says you are loosed from that affliction, all the forces of darkness cannot stop you.
Jesus said, "Should not this woman be loosed, being a daughter of Abraham"? Daughter of Abraham meant she was a part of the covenant that God made with Abraham. She wasn't just any random woman, she had rights and privileges because of whose family line she was in. Like her, you're not just anyone, you're a child of the Most High God. He handpicked you, he put his DNA in you. If Jesus were here today, he would say about you, "Should not this man, should not this woman, being a child of the Most High be free from this addiction, be free from this sickness, be free from this limitation"?
I talked to a couple last week, they've been trying to have a baby with no success. And they took the treatments, the experts say it's not going to happen, but God is saying, "I'm loosing you from that bareness. A healthy baby is on the way". Maybe you've been lonely, haven't met the right person, seems like it's never going to happen. God is loosing you from that loneliness. The right person is going to find you. Well, you tried to accomplish your dreams, but doors closed, no one would help, one setback after another. God is saying, "You're being loosed from what's hindering you". New doors are about to open. Opportunity is going to track you down. People will go out of their way to help you. You can't explain it, it doesn't make sense, it's a time of release where you're being loosed from things that have restricted you.
Now, you have to take let this take root in your spirit. Thoughts will tell you, "Nothing has changed, the problem looks just the same". Be a believer and not a doubter. Bondages have been broken, restrictions have been lifted, you've been released into increase, released into favor, released into new levels.
When Jesus declared this woman was free, and she stood up straight, it's funny the religious leaders didn't like it. They got upset, started finding fault, criticizing. It's the same way today: when we declare you're free, you're blessed, you're healed, you're forgiven, bondages are broken, some people may try to talk you out of it. "How could that be? God's not going to bless you, you've made too many mistakes. That sickness is permanent, I saw the report". Let that go in one ear and out the other. They're not going to understand, but that's okay. Their doubt is not going to stop what God's about to do.
Sometimes we're being limited by negative things in our family line that have been passed down: generational baggage, anger, addictions, low self-esteem. Some families everyone gets divorced, you go back generations and no one stayed married. Some families there's a spirit of lack and struggle, no one can get ahead. Other families there's depression and negativity, the mother was depressed, grandmother depressed, great-grandfather, it's a spirit that keeps going from generation to generation. I believe you're the one to break negative things in your family line. You're the one God is going to release from that baggage. Instead of that generational curse you're going to start a generational blessing, you're going to pass down things that make it better on your family and not worse.
This is what happened in the scripture with Jacob. He had no integrity, he was dishonest and manipulative, he went around deceiving people. He tricked his brother out of his birthright, he was known for his poor choices. What's interesting is his mother was the same way. She's the one that came up with the plan to deceive his father Isaac into giving Jacob the blessing that belonged to Esau, the firstborn son. Isaac was very old and nearly blind. She told Jacob to dress up like Esau, she would make the special soup that Esau always made his father. Jacob could take that in and pretend he was Esau. Well, the plan worked, he deceived his father and got the blessing. No wonder Jacob was a schemer, manipulative, it ran in the family.
When Esau found out what happened he was so angry that Jacob had to flee for his life. He went to another city and lived with his uncle Laban. Jacob agreed to work for him for seven years, and then he would give him his daughter Rachel in marriage. The problem was, Laban was dishonest too. He was a schemer, a manipulator. After 7 years Jacob fulfilled his promise, but at the wedding he must have had too much to drink, cuz the next morning he woke, up but it wasn't Rachel in bed, it was the older daughter Leah. Jacob nearly passed out. He went and said, "Uncle Laban, you tricked me. You didn't keep your word". Jacob shouldn't have been surprised, that's how he grew up tricking people. That same spirit ran all through the family.
Well, years later Jacob wanted to return home. He didn't like who he had become, he knew he was dishonest, live deceiving people. One night as they were traveling he sent his wives and all of his family ahead of him, that left him alone at this river bank. I can imagine him looking up at the stars and reflecting back on his life, knowing he was about to see his brother Esau. Was not only a little worried, but he was down on himself, thinking "I'm not proud of who I am. I cheat people, I'm dishonest".
Suddenly this man showed up, Jacob didn't realize it was an Angel. They started wrestling and struggling. At one point the Angel asked him what his name was. He answered "I am Jacob". The Angel said, "You will no longer be called Jacob, you're new name will be Israel". Jacob means deceiver, conniver. Israel means "Prince with God". It was that moment that the spirit of deception, dishonesty, no integrity was broken off of Jacob. God in his mercy said "Enough is enough. This generational baggage is coming to an end".
From that day forward you never read where Jacob deceived, where he manipulated. Didn't show up in his children, his grandchildren. In fact his son Joseph had incredible integrity, impeccable character. How could this be from a father that was known for dishonesty, and grandmother that deceived people, a great uncle that was a manipulator? Jacob came into a time of release, where the Most High stepped in and put a stop to what was limiting his family.
There may be things that have been passed down to you. You've tried to overcome, done your best to stand strong, but those same hindering spirits are holding you back, same anger, same depression, same compromise. Seems like you'll always struggle with it, it'll get passed on to the next generation. No, like with Jacob God is saying "Enough is enough". What you can't do God is going to do for you. He's sending the angel, he's send sending the deliverance. It's your time for release. No more passing down negative baggage, no more dealing with those same hindering spirits that are restricting you and holding your family back. Today is a day of freedom. Bondages are being broken, generational curses are coming to an end, generational blessings are beginning. It's a new day, God has changed your name. No more deceiver, compromiser, mediocrity: you are a prince with God, blessed, strong, valuable, confident, righteous, successful, victorious, in Jesus name.
God said about Jacob (Genesis 35:11-12), "You will multiply and become a great nation. Kings will be in your descendants. I will give you all the land I promise your father and grandfather". This was after years of deceiving people, years of being dishonest. But when the Angel changed his name, when the bondage was broken, God said "Now, that you're free, I'm going to bless you in ways you've never imagined. I'm going to do awesome things in your life". God doesn't hold our mistakes against us. You haven't missed your destiny because you struggle with some things. Freedom is coming, wholeness is coming, blessing is coming.
Jesus said in Luke 4:18-19, "The spirit of the Lord is upon me to announce freedom to the captives, recovery of sight to the blind, to set at liberty those that are oppressed, to declare the time of God's favor has come". That's what I'm doing today: I'm announcing freedom, I'm announcing victory, I'm announcing your time for release has come. But I'm sure back in those days when they heard Jesus, some people thought, "This isn't for me. I never get any good breaks", they missed out on what God had in store. Don't do like them. You have to get an agreement with God, "God, I receive this today. I believe you're releasing me from every bondage. I believe restrictions have been broken, generational baggage has come to an end. What has hindered me in the past will hinder me no more".
You are stepping into a new day of freedom, blessing and victory: receive it by faith! Matthew 18:18 says, "Whatever you bind on earth will be bound in heaven. Whatever you loose on earth will be loosed in heaven". One translation gives it more clarity. It says, "Whatever is already bound in heaven, you can bind on earth", meaning there's no sickness in heaven, there's no depression in heaven, no addictions, so we can stand against those things and we can loose freedom, loose victory. I want to do that today. Will you come into agreement with me?
- I bind depression, discouragement, hopelessness - I loose joy, happiness, contentment.
- I bind sickness, cancer, heart trouble, diabetes, inflammation, chronic pain - I lose healing, vitality, strength, a long life.
- I bind lack, poverty, not enough, can't get ahead - I lose a abundance, good breaks, opportunity, overflow.
- I bind generational curses, limitations passed down, hereditary baggage - I lose generational blessings, I lose breakthroughs, turn arounds, new standards for your family.
- I bind forces that are trying to get our children off course, bad influences, poor judgment, identity confusion - I lose purpose, destiny, good friends, clear direction.
- I bind addictions, bad habits, alcoholism, drug abuse - I lose freedom, wholeness and victory.
- I bind insecurity, low self-esteem, unworthiness - I lose boldness, confidence, value.
- I bind negativity, pessimism, a bad attitude - I lose faith, hope, expectancy. I lose a bright future for you and your family.
I believe and declare: your time of release is here. Bondages have been broken, restrictions have been removed, you will rise higher, accomplish dreams and reach the fullness of your destiny, in Jesus name!