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Watch 2022 online sermons » Joyce Meyer » Joyce Meyer - No More Shackles with Erica Campbell

Joyce Meyer - No More Shackles with Erica Campbell


Joyce Meyer - No More Shackles with Erica Campbell
TOPICS: Talk It Out
Joyce Meyer - No More Shackles with Erica Campbell

Ginger Stache: Hi everyone. Welcome. Come on in here. This is Joyce Meyer's Talk it Out podcast, where Joyce teaches the Word of God, in her practical, no-nonsense way. And my friends and I, talk the real stuff of living it. I'm Ginger Stache, with my friends, Jai, and Erin Cluley. And when we need a little extra help, we ask Ms. Joyce and she is always ready to jump right in, because sometimes, you need to talk about life with your girlfriends. So, consider yourself one of us, and come on in here because we have a new friend with us, today. And we are so excited. So, there are so many reasons that you know this amazingly, talented woman. She is a multi-platinum, gospel artist. She's won every award out there, and multiple, multiples of them, Grammys, stellar awards, all of them. She has her own syndicated, radio talk show. She's an author, a wife, a mother of three: Erica Campbell. Erica, thank you so much.

Erica Campbell: My pleasure!

Ginger Stache: We're so happy to have you with us.

Erin Cluley: You're amazing!

Erica Campbell: Thank you. I'm happy to be here.

Ginger Stache: People know her from Mary Mary, of course. And so much great music that we've all appreciated and enjoyed over the years.

Erica Campbell: Well, praise God.

Jai Williams: Well, I'm particularly, happy to have her here because I've known Erica for quite some time. First time, I heard them sing "Shackles," I was just like, "How, how do people do that"? "How do people," and I was just like, so amazed at the gifting and talents that they were. And I was like, "I wonder if I could ever do something like that"? But then, fast forward years, years, years down the road, like, a guy named, Asaph ward, ended up connecting me with the Mary's, and I got to connect with them and sing with them for a little bit.

Erica Campbell: And she traveled and sang background.

Jai Williams: Yeah, I got to sing with them and be around them, and get to be mentored by both of them. But I, like, Erica has been a great role model and a great person that, now, she's a pastor's wife as well.

Erica Campbell: I'm all the things.

Jai Williams: All the things. So, I just have looked up to you so much. Thank you for being here.

Erica Campbell: My pleasure. Oh, my gosh, Jai, wow!

Jai Williams: Love you.

Ginger Stache: We were just getting ready and going through a lot to do this, and I do already feel like we're fast friends because we learned so much that we have in common. We both get entirely caught up in Instagram ads and have bought some of the same things.

Erica Campbell: And they don't work, but we, then, keep buying things.

Ginger Stache: Exactly!

Erica Campbell: We've bought some of the same things.

Erin Cluley: Because they might work out that next time.

Erica Campbell: They might.

Erin Cluley: You just might find that one gem.

Ginger Stache: We walk in faith.

Erica Campbell: Absolutely.

Erin Cluley: It's a spiritual practice. I see, I will try tonight.

Jai Williams: Literally walking by faith.

Ginger Stache: Well, today, we wanna talk about a topic that I think will resonate with so many people. And Mary Mary has so many wonderful songs, but "Shackled" is one of those songs that just sticks in people's minds. It's been an important part of a lot of people's lives for many, many years. So, we want to talk about those things that shackle us, and how to get free from them, through praise. And that may sound light, the praise part of it. Do not underestimate the power of praise.

Erica Campbell: Absolutely. Writing that song, I did not know that I would have to live out that song, you know. "In the corners of my mind, I just can't seem to find a reason to believe that I can break free. I've been down for so long, feel like all hope is gone. But as I lift my hands, I understand that I should praise him through my circumstance". And that takes us right to scripture. If you think of Paul and Silas, that's what they were doing. They're literally in prison, literally bound and praising God to get free. God opens the doors. And I believe that's what happens. And did I know that when we were writing the song? Not really. You know, I was maybe, 27. Twenty-six, twenty-seven, I'm 49, that's a long way, and that message has been consistent. Many times the second verse rang, true. "Everything that could go wrong, all went wrong at one time," you know. But God has been faithful, and as I trust him, I'm able to get through. Doesn't mean, it doesn't hurt, doesn't mean it's not difficult. But trusting God is how I have gotten through so many different things in my life.

Ginger Stache: "Take the shackles off my feet so I can dance".

Jai Williams: Sing G.

Ginger Stache: No, I think someone really... Don't leave it with me. No, but those are such true, beautiful words. So, what you were saying, you didn't know how you would have to live them, how have you had to live them?

Erica Campbell: Whew. Me and my sister did a reality show. And during that reality show, my father passed. And that very same week, I had to go sing. We had a concert, an obligation that we could not, we couldn't not do it. And so, I brought my entire family with me, and we were able to make it through. But we were filming all of this, so I didn't have the opportunity to break. I didn't have the opportunity to go and ball up and sit in the corner. Which I wish I could, you know. Starting a church, when I didn't really want to. Sorry, I know this doesn't sound very Christian of me.

Ginger Stache: No, that's all right to say.

Erica Campbell: Thank you all. You guys are my kind. When my husband told me he was gonna start a church, I was going, "Hello? We're in the music industry. What are we, what are you doing"? First it started with Bible study. Then he went to seminary. Then he started hanging with all these bishops and preachers. I'm going, "Lord, we talked about this. We talked about this". And it was rough because I didn't give my "Yes". And I realize that I was watching him do something, while he was dealing with his wife, who was like, "Ugh..." and the Holy Spirit, literally, tugged on my heart, and he was saying, "The weight that he feels, is because you won't say, 'yes'. And you're not saying, 'yes,' to him, you're saying, 'yes,' to me". And so, it was a Sunday morning, and he was up preaching, and I could feel his weight 'cause I'm in the front row.

Jai Williams: Cute, real cute.

Erica Campbell: Cute little church, great. And after service, I went and gave him a hug, and I said, "I'm with you, and I'm with you 100%. And I'm with this church. And I'm with whatever God says he wants us to do". And I felt his release. And I just, I began to really repent in my heart, 'cuz I was like, "Man, I wonder how tough it was for your very wife to be like, 'eh, I don't want to do this at all'". You know, 'cuz we're a team. There's just been so many things. Even when I started my solo career, my sister was going through some things in her marriage, and she's like, "I just can't do it right now," but the Lord clearly told me to go. So, I released this song called, "A little more Jesus". And I put the song out and I'm really excited. And so, the day the song comes out, I go to iTunes to check the reviews, to see, "Will they like me, like they like Mary Mary"? And the first comment I saw was, "Oh, no, honey. You don't need a little more Jesus, you need a little more Tina, 'cuz you're just the pretty one, you can't sing".

Erin Cluley: Ohh...

Erica Campbell: And I just had to keep going, you know. I grew up kind of tough. You know, my father was really sarcastic. My family is kinda tough. So, I've heard people go, "Oh, that's horrible". So, it didn't break me, but it hurt me, you know. 'Cause I was like, "Lord, if you told me to do it, could you tell them, so they could be nice".

Ginger Stache: Yeah.

Erica Campbell: But they're not always going to be nice. And sometimes, it makes you a little more resilient, a little more tough, you know. Sometimes, it's kinda the training that you have to go through to get to where God, when God is going to take you somewhere high, in life, when he's going to expand and enlarge you, that means you're going to have to face something, and you cannot give up. You have to trust that God is in the middle of it, that this is building a story. Think about it. If you see, once upon a time, and happily ever after, and everything in the middle is a fluff, you're like, "This story's not interesting". There has to be hills and valleys. There has to be heartache and heartbreak. And sometimes, that's how God gets you to the sweet spot, you know. So, there's been some things, lots more than that. That's just the three I picked first.

Ginger Stache: Well, we're gonna talk about all of them. So, let's jump in, right now, and find out what Joyce has to say, really dig into the word about what it's like when times get hard, and what we need to do.

Joyce Meyer: We have weapons, there's ways that we can fight the enemy, but they're not what you would think. Because he's a spirit, so you gotta fight him in the spirit. And the way you fight him is totally opposite of what you would think. You overcome evil with good. You got to get this today. Come on, this is a big secret. You got to know who your enemy is, and you got to know how to fight him. Satan is your enemy, and you don't fight him the way that you would think. It's exact opposite. When he, when he's mean to you, you be good to somebody else. That's how you fight the devil. When somebody hurts you, you pray for them. Oh, this is so good if you can get this today. Lord have mercy. Now, praise and worship are both weapons of warfare. Keep singing. And if you don't sing, well, then hum. Come on. You know what praise is? Praise, I mean, it's probably a lot of different things, but I love what the Greek says about praise. It's a tale, or a narrative, or a story that you tell about the goodness of God. So, praise is not just when we come together like this and we sing songs. Praise is you having lunch with somebody, and instead of talking about your problem again, come on, instead of talking about your problem again that they're already really tired of hearing, try to find something that God has done for you at some time in your life, and tell a good tale on God. See, the more, that's what the enemy wants us to do. He wants to give us problems, and he wants us to rehearse them over and over and over. I don't mean to be rude when I say this, but just, I just gotta do it. Just shut up about your problems. I mean, yeah, sometimes we need to vent and talk to somebody. Well, do it and then get over it. Everybody's got problems. And it doesn't help. The more we focus on our problems, the bigger they get. We've got other things that we can talk about. And I don't know about you, but I am so tired of talking about everything that's wrong in the world. Lord, have mercy. I hate the news. It's just like...Ugh! I mean, if you don't know who you are in Christ, you can just look at the headlines and get depressed. And I know we have real problems and we can't ignore them, but let's also talk about some of the good things that God is doing in the earth, amen? We need to do that.

Ginger Stache: Such great advice, and it really all is so scriptural. "I don't wanna be rude, but I just have to stay this, just shut up".

Erin Cluley: I'm gonna say that some time but don't be offended because Joyce told us.

Erica Campbell: Joyce said it, to say, "Shut up," yeah.

Ginger Stache: What do you think about some of those things, that really, are right from scripture? You know, Jesus: "Turn the other cheek," praying for that person who's hurt you. Doing the opposite of what it feels like you should do to fight back. And yet, when you do the opposite, you're fighting in a powerful way. Tell me about your experience, in those areas.

Jai Williams: What I've been going through, over the past couple years, in my, my failed marriage, now. I'm used to saying, "My marriage," but you know, going through the process of divorce. Really praying for my ex has been difficult. But I do it. It hurts. It hurts to do. It hurts to do. But I am willing myself 'cuz as I continue,

Erica Campbell: 'Cause seems unfair.

Jai Williams: It feels unfair. It feels like, it feels like, like, you're a loser. It feels like you're losing more. Like it, as if, and there's a part of you, and that's one reason why, you know, going through this, this, this grieving process of my, of my family not being at all what I thought it would be, it gives me more empathy to understand when people go through grieving processes, and lose things, and lose people, and failed relationships. It just gives me so much more empathy and sympathy to understand why people do talk a lot about it. Because talking about it, for me, has, and that's why I've been grateful for this platform, to even be able to share my process, and not necessarily, gripe about it, but just be honest about it. It does, the more I talk about it, in certain ways, to help other people, it does take the power away from it. That is one of the ways I've learned how to unshackle myself from it. Because if you keep yourself muzzled, and that's why I believe in counseling so much. I believe in going to people that are qualified to help you, to give you tools, find a good pastor, a good person, a good, you know, accountability. But also, counseling to help you get through it. Because it does help to talk about it, but not whine about it. There's a difference between communicating what you're through to relieve, 'cuz what it does, when I talk about it, it just, ssss...

Erica Campbell: It takes the air out.

Jai Williams: It takes some of that pressure. 'Cuz like, it's an isolating place to be when you're going through something, in the moment. And I've just been one of those Christians, that was just like, as I go through something that's really, really hard, I don't want to wait until I've gotten to the other side.

Ginger Stache: Right. People need to see the pathway.

Jai Williams: Exactly, you know, and it's okay. It's okay.

Erica Campbell: A lot of people have spoken Christianese through their problems and they're never honest. And I've seen people like that, totally leave faith, because you need to release, sometimes. You need to be honest. And, but when you learn to keep God in the center of it, it changes everything. I was going through a tough time, and I was in church, and worship was going. And I had my hands up, and they're singing, and the song's great. And I'm going, "Lord, this is not fair, but I'm here. 'Cuz I'm not going anywhere else. And I don't want to serve the devil, I only wanna serve you, but I'm not happy," and my hands are up. And I go, "Could you just let me feel your presence," and I felt the power of God wash over me, from the crown of my head to the sole of my feet. And I knew, in that moment, that everything will be okay. I knew the situation didn't change, but he was changing me, in the situation. And he can't change you, if you're not in the situation.

Ginger Stache: But you had to ask that in that moment.

Erica Campbell: I had to ask for it.

Ginger Stache: And do that sacrifice of praise. That's what the Bible talks about, the sacrifice of praise. It is hard to praise when you're in that place.

Erica Campbell: Absolutely, Jesus was on the cross, praying for them. "Father, forgive them. They know not what they do". You don't know, I'm anointed. You don't know I'm blessed. You don't know that there's purpose on my life. So, when you inflict, whatever you inflict, or say whatever you say, you don't realize who I am. But if I know who I am, I know that's a dart from the enemy trying to stop me. I grew up in a small, cogic church, evangelistic church of God in Christ. And you know, my pastor wasn't highly educated but he was highly anointed. And he was saying, "If the devil's not chasing you, you might be running with him". I said, "If you never face any adversity, and everything is fine, you might need to look to your right, your left, and see if you got a few demons following you". He said, "Because when you are tearing down the enemy's kingdom because you're praising God, you're living right, you're being an example, you're being a witness, the enemy's mad at you". He is upset. So, you're going to have to fight. Now, you've got heaven on your side. You've got supernatural reinforcements to help you through these things, but you know, you gotta go through some stuff. If you want to build a muscle, my trainer says, "You have to tear it down first". I have to lift heavy weight in order to burn the fat, you know. I've gotta run. I've gotta do these things. The weight doesn't come off. Everything that is on here is because I ate it on, right? And so, if I want it off, I gotta work it off. It doesn't just, and so, sometimes, some of the problems we have to work our way, praise our way. Sometimes, talk our way. We gotta talk it out, you know, just to kind of get to a place of healing. And when Jesus is in the center of that, you can heal, and then, be able to share it with somebody. And it's not just a test, but a testimony. It's not a mess, now, it's a message because you allowed God in the center of the situation.

Ginger Stache: How do we find that balance between talking it out and talking about it to the nth degree? I like what you said that you had to find that place of what to say, and still be praying, and still be doing those things that God was asking you to do. So, how you find that balance in all of it? 'cuz, really, we just want other people to feel our hurt. That's so often, why we talk.

Erin Cluley: I think, for me, I have to check my heart, a lot before I open my mouth because I know, I know if my motive is not right. I know when I just want you to tell me, "I'm so sorry. They are wrong, and I'mma make you feel better about it". I know when that's what I'm looking for. I also, know who I'm talking to. So, for me, I have to think through like, what is the goal here? And who are you talking with? Because if I tell you guys, I know I'm going to get godly wisdom. You'll be on my side.

Jai Williams: We'll say they're wrong though.

Erin Cluley: Because they are.

Jai Williams: But then we'll give you something.

Erin Cluley: I will get both from you.

Jai Williams: It's balance.

Erin Cluley: But I know, at the end of it, you're gonna push me to do this. I think, as Christians, if we are quick to say, "No, God's got you. It's gonna be fine". Then it makes me feel like I'm a crazy person, or I don't have enough faith.

Ginger Stache: Yeah, "You shouldn't feel sad, you shouldn't... It's gonna be fine".

Jai Williams: I can't stand spiritual bypassing. M-mm! I can't! Like, or you zoom right back, past things that either, are even happening in our world. Because you know, you speed pass it with scripture. And it's like, "Wait, we also have to, we're human. So, let's identify what the issue is but still,"

Erica Campbell: It depends on their experience. It depends on where they are. So, my mom grew up really old school. She grew up hearing, "If you make your bed hard, you lay in it". They didn't say, "Go to therapy," back in the day. So, this conversation is kinda knew for some, you know, believers who've been in faith for a long time. But I've found that you can't praise a God you don't trust. And there's a lot of people who serve God, but they don't really trust him, "Because this happened, and that happened, and that happened. And you know, the devil's not an option. So, I'll stay here in church, but I won't ever get to the fullness of what God has for me, 'cuz I'm not standing on the promise. I'm standing on my pain," you know. And so, "I'll sing this song, but I remember, God, that you didn't bring me through this," right? We know that song for ha, there's a line that says, ♪ God will do, what he said he would do. He will stand by his word: he will come through. No weapon formed against me shall prosper. It won't work ♪ what I realized about that song is, if you don't know what he said, you don't know what he'll do. If you're not in his word, then you don't know the scripture says, "Thanks be unto God who causes us to triumph". If you're not in his word, you don't know that he sees the tears that women cry. If you're not in his word, you don't understand the promises that he has for us, that with every trial, he's gonna bring you out, you know.

Ginger Stache: That's so good.

Erica Campbell: And so, you've gotta know what the word says about your situation. And a lot of times, what I'm going through, I'll start googling, "What does the Bible say about this"? You know, I'd love to say that I know all the scriptures, and where they're all found, and what they all mean. I don't. So, sometimes, Google will help me.

Ginger Stache: Google's a wonderful thing for that.

Erica Campbell: And a scripture will come, and I'll go, "Gosh, that's what I needed. God, I thank you". So, now, I'll say this over my life. I won't declare that they were mean, or I got fired, or I didn't get the deal, or someone said, 'no,' or someone stole money, or had to change an employ, I won't declare, I'll declare that God is going to provide for me. I'll declare that he's my comforter, that he's my joy, he's my strength, you know.

Jai Williams: Well, what do, I have a question for everybody, then. Well, what do you do, when you feel like, I'm just gonna be real. That it feels like the weapon formed against you did prosper.

Ginger Stache: That, see...

Jai Williams: When it feels like it's winning. You know, how does it, you...

Erica Campbell: But do we, as believers, think we're not supposed to go through. The Bible is full of everybody going through, and God bringing them out. So, I think, sometimes, especially, growing up cogic, your taught, "If I'm a good girl, if I do everything, nothing bad will ever happen. If something happen..."

Ginger Stache: We've heard Jai say that so many times.

Erica Campbell: It's my fault". Job, you know, his friends were like, "Eh, job, you sure didn't do anything? There's no way you'd be going through this bad, if you didn't do anything". And that wasn't the case. And a lot of times, you know, I, and I've said that to God, "God, I didn't do anything". But when you really trust God, in the process, then when you're in the throws, and they're saying things, and things hurt, you can go, "God, but I know you're gonna bring me out. I won't stay here forever". And that's something we can hold onto.

Ginger Stache: Yeah. Well, we're gonna check back in. Let's let Joyce share a little bit more about exactly what you were asking about, what do you do, when you don't feel that God is doing what he says he's gonna do.

Joyce Meyer: God is working in your life. Every, single one of you, God is working in your life, right now, in ways that you cannot feel, don't see, and don't understand. And just because what's going on in your life, right now, doesn't feel good, doesn't mean God's not working. And everything that we go through, we need to lift up our voice and say, "God, I believe you're working in my life, right now. I'm expecting something good". Don't let the devil drag you into that worry, and fear, and mental torment, that's gonna steal every day that you have. Exodus 3, 9-14: "'now, behold the cry of the Israelites has come to me and I've also seen how the Egyptians oppress them. Come now, therefore,'" he's talking to Moses. "'and I will send you to Pharaoh that you may bring forth my people, the Israelites, out of Egypt'. And Moses said to God, 'who am I, that I should go to Pharaoh and bring the Israelites out of Egypt'? And God said, 'i will surely be with you. And this is the sign to you that I have sent you'". The sign that God has sent us, is when he's with us. I know that God is with me when I preach the gospel. I know that. I don't see him. I don't, maybe, feel him in the way that we might think about feeling. But I do feel him, in that, I know that there's no way that I could do this, if it wasn't God. And God is with you, in your situation. Some of you are in very difficult situations, and yet, in the midst of that, you have joy, and peace, and you have hope, and only God can give us that. God is with you. Just because you have a problem that does not mean that God has abandoned, you God is with you. "'When you have brought this people out of Egypt, you shall serve God, on this mountain,'" of Hareh Sinai and Moses continued. And he said, to God, "'behold, when I come to the Israelites, and I say to them, "The God, of your fathers, has sent me to you," and they say to me, "Well, then, what's his name"? What shall I say to them'"? And I love the way God explains himself. He doesn't give you a whole lot of information. And God said to Moses, "'I am who I am. And what I am. And I will be what I will be'. And he said, 'you shall say this to the Israelites, "I am".'" I am, here, right now. The great I am, who's everywhere, all the time watching over every person, involved in every person's life. Even, right now, chasing those people that are living in sin and trying to woo them into a relationship.

Ginger Stache: So, let's talk about the importance of understanding that, that, "I am," that God is there. He is who he is. He is working. And erica, I love what you said about needing to understand who he is, in order, to stand on those promises. But we've all had those times, in life, at least I have, where I've said, "God, are you"? You know, "I know you say you are, but I'm not, I'm not feeling it. I'm not seeing it. There's no evidence, right now". And that is where we have two choices: you stand in faith, or you keep crying, and whining, and being unhappy. And I've done both really, really well, you know, I done...

Erica Campbell: Same.

Ginger Stache: I've done so much. But that whole thing about praising him through our circumstances, when everything goes wrong, all at the same time, how do you hold on to that, "I am"?

Erica Campbell: For me, I didn't want to let God down. But then, again, I'm not holding him up. So, how could I let him down, right? But I didn't, I know when people come and they're ready to receive, I really, kind of think about others. And I truly, truly, truly believe that God's gonna take care of me. I just, with tears in my eyes, I believe. In a hospital bed, I believe. In divorce court room, I believe. I truly believe that God is gonna take care of me. I always say, "It won't be the day I want, or the way I want". But I believe from my nose, to my toes, that God is gonna take care of me. So, even, when I don't see the answer, I don't feel the answer, it feels unfair, you know, I'm in the tren, and I still have to work, and, you know, I can be like, dead dog tired, and then, there's a line of people and have to shake their hands and say, "Hello". And I'm going, "God, this just doesn't feel fair". But then, that peace that passes all understanding, kinda just,kind of Carries me a little bit and allows me to do it. And those are the times, where I know he's real, he's not gonna leave me, he'll never leave me, nor forsake me because I've experienced it. So, with every test and every trial, you believe a little bit more. Like, I went totally crazy on that trial, this one, I only went a little crazy, maybe, the next trial I won't go crazy at all.

Jai Williams: There's hope for the future.

Erica Campbell: Every experience, you learn, and you grow in faith, a little bit more. I think, that's why, when you see like those seasoned, old saints, they can have all kind of bad news, they'll just say, "Well, praise the Lord, baby. It's going to be all right". And if you're in your twenties, you go, "How do you know it's gonna be all right?"! You know, you're losing it. But, with each experience with God, my faith has grown, you know. My capacity to deal with more stuff, you know, has expanded. And I'm just, I just trust God. I just love God. I really do. And even, when I'm frustrated or irritated, down in my soul, I'm going, "But you know Jesus is gonna come through". You know it. But you've gotta, if you don't believe that, then maybe, you never get to that victory, 'cuz you're allowing the lies of the enemy, you know, "Oh, God's forgotten about you. Oh, he's way too busy to take care of your stuff. Oh, there's starving kids in another country, he's taken care of something else". You know, "America's in turmoil, he'll get to you, later". You know, he's always whispering in your ear. And you've gotta learn to just tell the devil, "Just, shut up". Y'all, don't think I'm crazy, okay? But sometimes, in my car, I roll those windows down. I go, "I'm not talking to you, today. Get out of my car".

Ginger Stache: I love that.

Erica Campbell: "Get out. Get out. I'm sick of this. No, I don't want to think about it anymore".

Ginger Stache: Your kids aren't around right?

Erica Campbell: Oh, sometimes, I do it in front of the kids.

Ginger Stache: I don't want them jumping out.

Erica Campbell: No, but I'm teaching them how to do it, too. That's warfare.

Ginger Stache: Absolutely, yes.

Erica Campbell: I'm teaching them, too. Sometimes, I'm walking through my house, I'm going, "No, peace lives here".

Ginger Stache: Yeah.

Erica Campbell: I'm all about beating up the devil. I want to beat him down. And I can beat him down with my praise, with my kindness. You know, when I'm forgiving. The enemy's like, "Ugh! We couldn't get her". Happens all the time, right before I'm going on stage. It's always something, promoter doesn't have the money, all the flights got cancelled, the guitar player didn't make it, like, it's always something, and you just have to keep going, and trust God, you know.

Ginger Stache: Yeah, yeah, I've had some major things like that as well. Like, right before a major women's conference that we'd been working on for months, I would get a call that your dad has cancer. I would get a call, that the baby that your daughter is carrying, has a heart issue. And there's nothing you could do at that point, except for, first cry, and cry out to God. And then, it's just like, you're saying, it's, "How am I going to respond? How am I gonna fight back"? 'cuz, I'm a fighter, and I'll fight one way or the other. I'll fight by getting really upset and acting pretty ridiculous, or I'll fight back by doing this amazing thing that God's given me the opportunity to do. I think about what I owe him. He owes me, nothing. He owes me, nothing. So, the fact that I'm going through these hard things, I don't like it, but it shouldn't be a surprise, because we all do, and that's this life that we're in. God doesn't owe me an answer to my, "Whys," 'cuz I ask a lot of whys. But he's giving me these amazing opportunities to share in front of people, to praise with those people, to pray for them, to have a platform that I'm so grateful for. And so, I think that's where, "Okay, I'm gonna fight back, because the main thing that the devil wants, is to keep me from doing this thing that God has given me the opportunity to do". And if instead, it's that opposite thing, that we were talking about. Instead, of doing, what I feel like doing, doing the opposite. Go out there, telling people, being real, telling people what's going on. 'Cuz I've done that. "This is what's happening in my life, but we're gonna praise God together, 'cuz I trust him, and he's going to do something in this situation". And when we can do that, people see it, and it's important in their life, too. So, it not only activates the Holy Spirit working in our life, but it inspires other people for him to work in theirs. Let's talk about what some of those shackles are. Because, for me, that can be one of the shackles, for me, it could be anger. The shackle can be anger. I can get really mad. I can get mad at the circumstance. I can get mad at God for not doing what I wanted him to do. And if I don't praise through those shackles, then I won't be able to see what God really does want to bring forth. So, there, there are so many different shackles in our lives, and a lot of mine, are myself, self-imposed shackles. You know, they're not always. There are so many things that happen, in our life, that can snatch our freedom. But that's not what God wants for us. So, what are some of the shackles that we've all had to praise through?

Jai Williams: I've had to praise through disappointment.

Erin Cluley: That's a good one.

Jai Williams: You know, whether it's disappointment in people. Disappointment in, mostly people.

Ginger Stache: "And then there's disappointment in people".

Jai Williams: There's disappointment in people, church people, and then, work people, and then family people... Yeah.

Erica Campbell: You know, I always say people are very people-y.

Jai Williams: Yeah, they are very people-y, yeah. So, disappointment in that and also disappointment in, because I'm, like, I'm a planner, I love strategy. I love like, getting things in a certain order, in a certain way. When those plans, 'cuz I've always been a person, that said like, if I make a plan, I'm going to submit to God. You know, write the vision, make it plain, then submit it to God. But when all the plan, it just like, every plan, I'm tired of planning then, 'cuz it's just doesn't seem like I have any control over it. So, just disappointment in, even, like, things just completely pivoting without any warning, so.

Erin Cluley: No, you breathed first.

Erica Campbell: We both took a deep breath together.

Erin Cluley: For me, a lot of it, in the past couple years, has been my desire to control a situation. So, what you said, reminds me of that. Sometimes, it comes out in the form of anxiety, or fear, or just anger that I can control. And so, I find those times, I've shared with you guys, in the past, in the shower, or the kitchen sink, is where the Lord and I have so many talks about those things. And so, praise and worship has become what I go to. And so, I'll sing so loud in my house, my poor children. But, I think that, I can feel that warfare of taking off those shackles when you are, when I'm dealing with those sad, those things.

Erica Campbell: You know, I've learned, 'cuz I have a big circle. I have seven sisters, I have a bunch of girlfriends and church, first lady friends, and I've realized that the enemy uses things that appear to be a Christ-like character traits. Like being quiet, when you speak up, but using that against you. The enemy will use being tired against you. When we feel like it's more Christian-like to work ourselves to the bone, and then, by the time you get somewhere to minister, you're tired and drained, and have low tolerance. And so, I've learned to not let my own desire to be Christ-like, good girl syndrome, be nice, and be kind, and be there, and be present, when sometimes, the spirit, the most spiritual thing you can do is take a nap and get rest, so I can be fully prepared. And so, I don't, I try not to let my own drive shackle me. You know, like, it's weird because it's like, "But you're working for Jesus". But sometimes, take a nap, or go on vacation with your kids, you know. Doing those things, so sometimes our desire, I truly believe that the enemy knows that I'm never gonna leave Jesus. So, he'll try to use me, he'll try to manipulate my desire to please God against me, you know, by not taking good care of my body. And if this is the temple, if this is my temple, I've gotta take good care of this, so I can work for God. I've gotta make sure that I'm in the right frame of mind. That I, that I've got my peace, you know, that I am settled, that I'm eating right. Some of the natural things that we kind of don't pay attention to, I think that's how we honor God as well, when we make sure that we're taking good care of ourselves, we don't allow...

Ginger Stache: That's really great advice.

Erica Campbell: Serving in the church, you know, some people have served in the church so much their families fell apart. You know, they were so busy serving Jesus, they forgot that they had to be human, you know. If he's given us everything pertaining to life, and Godliness, then you can't just lean on Godliness, and forget about your life, you know. My first, few years, I, me and my husband didn't celebrate our wedding anniversary, probably for the first five years, 'cuz we were "Working". I was out singing "Shackles," and all the other songs, you know, I was out working for Jesus. And then, probably, about nine years in, he's going, "I really miss my wife," and I said, "And I really miss my husband". And so, I had to change some things. I had to start saying, "No". I had to start prioritizing this family that, I believe, God gave to me. So there has to be a balance. And so, those are the things that I probably, struggle with most. I could probably be a workaholic, but I try my best not to be.

Ginger Stache: Yeah, no, I think about all the people that are connecting to that and all the other things that can shackle us: insecurity, doubt in our own lives. So many things that the power of praise can break through.

Erica Campbell: Absolutely.

Ginger Stache: Well, there's another one, and this is a big one for me. I mentioned it, briefly, but it's that "Why" question. Asking God, "Why this is happening? Why this is not happening? Why he's not doing what I want"? So, we're gonna check in, one last time with Joyce, as she talks a little bit about that.

Joyce Meyer: "Why, God, why"? The question that never goes away, "Why"? And you can ask it all you want to but it's the question that rarely gets an answer. Even Jesus said, "My God, my God, why have you forsaken me"? He didn't get an answer. The Bible doesn't say that God said anything back to him. So, the next thing Jesus said was, "Into your hands I commit my spirit". I love that. I mean, all of our pain together would never equal what Jesus went through on the cross for us. We don't even begin to fathom. How many of you know how heavy, and icky, and awful it makes you feel when you do something like, you mess up really bad? I mean, not like one of these little sins, I mean, you really just... Okay, now just imagine having every sin of every human that ever lived put on you all at one time and trying to bear that. I can't even fathom the pain. And, he said, "Why have you forsaken me"? We often feel, in our pain, that we've been forsaken but we never are because he's Emmanuel, God with us, always with us. In us, under us, around us, never leaves us nor forsakes us. And, I just feel very strongly tonight that I'm supposed to impress on you that no matter what you're going through God is with you and he will redeem it. He'll make something beautiful out of it. Now, this doesn't all just happen magically. There are things that you will need to do to cooperate with God. I'm not gonna give you a list of, do these five things and your problems will be over. There is no such list. I'm just gonna tell you to follow God. Follow God. Whatever he shows you to do, do it. And, if there's nothing for you to do then stand firm and wait on him. Sometimes, he takes a lot longer than we'd like, but he knows what he's doing. The only time you realize that is after you've gone through it and you look back and see the good things that came out of what you went through. How many of you can say that you would not be the person you are today if you had not gone through some of the things that you went through? So, the question that never goes away is, "Why"? But yet, Proverbs 3:5-7 says, "Trust in the Lord with all your heart, and do not lean to your own understanding. In all your ways acknowledge him, and he will direct your path. Be not wise in your own eyes". I love that. It's almost like saying, "Don't even think that you're smart enough to solve your own problems". If I could just do a Joyce Meyer Translation on that, that's what I would say. Don't even think that you're smart enough to figure out what you should do in this situation. And I love this, "It will be healing to your flesh and refreshment to your bones".

Ginger Stache: That's hard stuff.

Jai Williams: Very hard.

Ginger Stache: It is. It's hard stuff but it, if you've lived it, if you've been in the middle of it, and tried it both ways: if you have an, a and a b, to choose, I think you learn a lot about who God is through that. It's like that verse in, is it Habakkuk? Or kakakick.

Erin Cluley: I've never heard it like that.

Ginger Stache: Anyway, "Though the fig tree does not bloom," though everything goes wrong, essentially, "I will still praise you". And I think that's what it has to come back to. Because when we make that conscious choice, when we make that decision, it changes what's happening in the spiritual realm around us. God honors that choice that we make.

Erica Campbell: And everybody's praise looks different, you know. Some people, you know, love to dance around their house to worship music. You know, some people, you know, love to go to church. Some people will turn on, you know, Joyce on YouTube. That's my mom's favorite thing. She's always watching her on YouTube. You know, whatever you do to get connected. Just get connected, to get out of that, that mode, that mindset, that doubt, that fearful place, you know, where the enemy is whispering. I always tell my kids, I was like, "You know, the cartoons that you see with an angel on one shoulder and the devil's like? That's real. Just make sure you always respond to the angel, and not the devil". You know, what I mean. 'Cuz he's always trying to get at you. But when you realize that God is faithful, when you realize that he will bring you out, then even in your sad times, you can go, "Though he slay me, yet, will I trust him".

Ginger Stache: And it's so important, in all of us saying that, to say that we realize that it's really hard to do.

Erica Campbell: Yeah!

Ginger Stache: We're not just saying, "Just do this and it'll all be great".

Jai Williams: I'm going through, right, in this very moment, you know, and what I've realized is that praising God is, a lot of times, doing exactly what he's called you to be, and do. Whatever, that thing is, you know. 'Cuz that's what Satan wants to stop. He wants to stop purpose. He wants to stop God's plan for your life. And I just wanna encourage anybody that's listening. It's like, I know for me, my voice, whether it be singing, talking, whatever, he wants to muzzle me. I know that. And I'm serving him notice, right now, because it's not gonna work, it's not. I'm not gonna stop singing. I'm not gonna stop talking. I'm not gonna stop using the words that God's given me. Speaking the Word of God over my life. I'm not gonna stop, so. He can cut that, stop. He can cut it. But it comes from me actually, taking authority and saying, out loud, what he's not gonna do. And so, anybody that's watching, just please, whatever that thing is, to speak it out loud, and say, like, "Satan, you will not win. Like, you're not gonna stop the purpose of God in my life". And like, one of the things that, it was like a visual that came to me, while we were talking, it was like, God is trying to birth something, and this is me, for me, personally. He gave it to me, and I'm gonna share it with you guys. Like a woman having a baby, like, he's birthing something inside of me. And I remember, when I was having my daughter, there were certain points when I would push, but I wouldn't say anything, 'cuz I just felt muzzled, like a pain was so hard. Like, I'm getting, like, it was so difficult, that I just, I was just like... And then, the doctor would like, say, "Breathe"!

Erica Campbell: Yeah, yeah! You have to have to...

Jai Williams: You have to breathe, and I didn't want to breathe because I felt like, if I would make noise, it would hurt worse. But, honestly, when I would just bear down, and breathe, and, "Ahh"! Scream and let it out, like, the pain would, it would still be there, but it would be less. So, I just encourage, whatever that praise looks like...

Ginger Stache: It is more effective.

Jai Williams: It is more effective. Like, don't stay silent.

Erica Campbell: Don't underestimate a good Ole Holler.

Jai Williams: A good Ole Holler.

Erica Campbell: Listen, if you need to take a drive, maybe you live in an apartment, I don't know, or if you're in the country, somewhere, go out in the grass and just... You know, sometimes, you just gotta get it out, you know, because you know, you're in the fight. "I'm not getting out of this fight. I gotta get my, I gotta get through this, right, but I need some extra strength. God, give me a little bit more". You know, you just kinda have to bear down.

Ginger Stache: A little growl.

Erica Campbell: A little growl, a little bit,think about the lioness. Think about the lion kingdom. The lion goes out to, the lioness and goes out to get the food. I'm sure she has to growl and fight, fight with other animals. And sometimes, that's,it's that way in life. We're fighting, we gotta get, we got to get that glory and that grit. You know, you got to be graceful and gritty sometimes. And when you learn, you can go through, with authority, and know, "I'm not staying in this place forever. I'm coming through this, and I'm coming through it with victory. 'Cuz I'm holding on to Jesus. And he's given me, everything I need, to be everything, I need". To say that to myself, "Erica, you have everything you need to be everything you need. He's already equipped you. He's already prepared you. He's already made the way. The finish line isn't moving. So, if you stop, that just means you won't get there. So, you gotta keep going. Go slow, but keep going," you know. Broken leg, keep going. Limping, keep going, get to the finish line.

Ginger Stache: And it feels like, sometimes, that we're laying down and rolling over, right. If I pray for my enemy, is that laying down and rolling over and letting them do what they wanna do? And yet there's so much strength in that. There's strength in saying God's word, instead of saying the vile things we want desperately to say.

Erica Campbell: Bless those who curse you.

Ginger Stache: Exactly. It's not laying down. It's fighting hard, being that lioness, and that needs to growl, and be who God says she can be.

Erica Campbell: Praying for your kids. Declaring that he won't steal your children's mind, all that they watch and all that they see. You know, declaring that they will be filled with the spirit, that they will love, you know, what their mom does. You know, I would hate to serve God, and my kids are at church like, "Oh, I can't wait to get out of here". I want them to love the same God. So, I know the enemy is fighting 'em. So, I have to fight with my praise. I have to fight in my house about turning on worship music, you know. And then, I go through their little feed on their phone and go, "Not interested. Unfollow. Not subscribe to that. Don't want you watching that," you know. And then, what I'll do, is I'll go, and I'll click on Joyce, and I'll click on Joel Osteen, and I'll click on Mary Mary, and make sure that you, that there's some gospel stuff, some Jesus is gonna come up in your feed, you know. To make sure that my kids love the Lord, I've got to, I know God's got them, but I've got to do my part. And it's, I won't just let them go. Some people are like, "Well, your kids, they wanna do, what they wanna do, and they have their own opinion". The enemy is not saying that. The enemy is like, "I want them to watch my stuff, sing my stuff. I want them to pay attention. I wanna kinda just pull them slowly, build up that rebellion in their heart". Like, we gotta go to work, as praying women. Warring, in the spirit, over our families, our lives, our ministries.

Erin Cluley: One of my favorite, warring postures is in, I would stand in praise and worship all day long. I cannot sing like any of you, in this room, but I don't care. As long as I can be...

Jai Williams: You look so happy when you do it.

Erin Cluley: I love it more than anything. And my favorite thing to do is my hands straight up. And I cannot, like, I can recall, so many times, where I have been in such pain and turmoil, but when you go to that place, and however, you wanna worship, that's between you and Jesus, but to surrender, whatever it is, and to, crying, just tears streaming down my face. But like, the physical release you get, when you worship, and saying, nothing's change," my circumstance, when I leave this place, is gonna be the same, but I will give you everything I have".

Jai Williams: "I'll be different".

Erin Cluley: Yes. So, I leave that room, like, I can fight again. Like that grit has come back. I am empty. I have left all my tears on the floor. I'm sorry for the Kleenex. But I will leave with such strength because of what I left on that mat, you know.

Erica Campbell: Absolutely.

Ginger Stache: That's good. I think this has been so practical and so encouraging for people who feel like those shackles are so tight. And none are so tight that God can't help break them open. So, having these really identifiable steps, how to fight back. You are strong because he is strong. So, we just pray for you, today, that you're encouraged that God breaks those shackles right off of you, so that you can dance, and praise, and that you'll really see him moving in your life, even when you don't realize it. Even when you're asking the why questions, and not getting the answers trust in him, don't give up, stand on his word.
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