Leon Fontaine - Mind Games

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Today I want to talk to you about people getting into your head. Want to talk to you about mind games. Want to talk to you about obsessions. I want to talk to you about thinking, I want to talk to you about stuff that so few people know how to handle. People get funky ideas in their head and then they begin to think on it. Focus on it, then they become obsessed with it. And you've got a person whose life is totally controlled. They are literally now have a stronghold. They literally now are controlled by an outside force, an outside idea. We live in a in a culture where people pride themselves at being good at mind games. And, although it sounds trivial, although it sounds funny and like, I'm going to get better at it than you, and I'm going to get in your head, there's a master player.

You know, it's fun watching the youth when you go on a Friday night, and you see all these guys talking about who they're play, they're playing against somebody around the world on this game and that game and it's all these gamers everything's about gamers, and what's funny is there's guys my age that I mean, hours upon hours, their wife is saying you know come talk to me, but he's there gaming, competing, trying to and, the best gamer for mind games is Lucifer, OK. And so we're going to unveil some stuff here in fact my goal today is to help you develop the skill of casting your care, the skill that Satan can't stand against. There's a skill that, a blessing that the Christians have and I'm calling it a skill because too many Christians just read the read Pray for power and God's going to look after it. And that's not true.

The Bible's very clear study to show yourself approved under God as a workman that needed not to be ashamed and rightly divide the word of truth, buried in the Bible is the most incredible stuff. The other day I was going from some stuff on psychology and, and listening to some of the what they say are the most brilliant minds that ever wrote books on human psyche, and something that's in some of these people are studied by universities and then you read this person's life how demonized they were how evil they were how sexually messed up they were. But they had this brain that was able to dive deep and un-earth principles of the mind the subconscious the psyche that everyone is just in awe of and they think it's truth because it seems to make sense.

But we have forgotten that Lucifer, this fallen angel who is the father of lies has spent thousands of years getting into people's head. He got into Adam and he got into Eve's head. He got into Adam's head too but doesn't you know that's a whole 'nother story as to why he would pick wife over God why he didn't stand strong be a man and say, all right let's talk here. Instead of just, yes dear. We live in a world where you've got to understand that for someone to go kill people, something got into their head. For someone to go wipe out a school, something is playing mind games with that head. For someone to give up a family their kids for someone to begin to destroy their own marriage with thoughts that are ridiculous, but they're so obsessed they can't seem to break free. And I'm talking about born again Christians, that they have not understood this area of the mind and so, by no means is this going to be an exhaustive teaching to them but I'm going to touch enough stuff that some of you who know the word dive in and make sure that this is an area that you become good at.

We play mind games with each other. Some of us are unaware of it. Okay, marriage is all about control until you learn to change your mindset on it. Because for you to have your needs met, for you to have the things you desire and what you see in a marriage and if it's not there, and so you begin to talk and the talking goes nowhere and. And so you begin to manipulate, because manipulation gets you somewhere, and even if you get your way and you begin to get into that spouses head, and you begin to move them in the direction that you want. You think you're winning, but even the, sorry for my language, but even the dumbest spouse on the planet will eventually feel violated, they'll feel betrayed, they will feel. I'm for something's going wrong here. I don't like what I'm in the middle of. So to win is not to win.

The enemy, how do you play mind games with somebody who's been around for thousands of years. The same guy that played mind games with Eve, the same guy that played mind games with Nimrod, the same guy that played mind games with Jesus. The same guy that took. And you know he's training and as a demonic force you know when you study the Bible and especially in this new testament because the old testament is so silent about daily demonic interference, you know, other than verses on his prophetic verses on his beginnings and where he comes from we have no real good examples of what it looks like daily to deal with the enemy. In the Old Testament but as soon as Jesus comes on the scene complete things change, they cry out they say things they do things. He deals with them the Apostles deal with them.

And some people get so demon minded that it's just a complete waste of time that no such thing as Deliverance Ministries. That's that. That's ridiculous. Sorry. I'm trying to bring a balanced approach to a topic that I hope will help you and for every mile of truth there's two miles of ditch and you're either going to ignore him and not even know he's got you obsessed on non-truths. Got you thinking in areas that are wrong. He's got someone playing mind games with you or he is or you're on the other side you're so demon minded. And remember there's a big difference today as a human. There's a big difference on everything that I teach between aware and focus. Let's clear that up to be aware of something is important, to be aware of somebody's shortcomings, to be aware of the things that could go wrong to be aware of the weaknesses that you have to be aware of. The negative side, is crucial.

Otherwise you're naive. I never want you in leadership if you're naive. Anybody can manipulate you. Anybody can play mind games with you, your own kids will take you out. So we need to be aware but not focused on it. Focus is very clear in the word, you focus on Jesus you focus on his word you're aware of all the stuff you're aware of the battles you're aware of the weaknesses you're aware of enemies you're aware of people coming against you. You're aware of someone to abuse you. You're aware of someone setting up to take things you're aware. But the focus. Has got to be different than the awareness. So you're not naïve, you're aware and focused. Always think that way as you go into the Word of God.

Now, your mind when you do not know how to control your mind, your mind is easily taken over by anybody else with an agenda, or by the enemy. And so you begin to become anxious, when you cannot control your own thought processes when you cannot control your reason and your emotions. What happens is nothing goes good positively. By default you'll go negative. By default you will simply begin to allow thoughts to come in that will own you. And so the first thing I'm going to cover is in 1 Peter 5:7-8. It shows you how to begin to restore your mind. Oh Leon, you may you make it sound like a I don't control my mind. Going by stats, most here don't. You know, most people can't focus for 30 seconds on one thing without their mind wandering, are so out of control with their mind. To come on. I don't believe that okay.

One one thousand, two one thousand, three one thousand, four one thousand, five one thousand, six one thousand. Seven one thousand, I've only done seven seconds. And you're already had how many thoughts go through. That's not just this unawareness of your own thought processes. People are unaware of where their beliefs come from. People are unaware of why they think the way they do about their spouse, why you treat the kids the way you do because a fearful belief systems etc. etc. So it says in First Peter 5:7 casting the whole of your care all your anxieties all your worries all your concerns, once and for all on him for he cares for you affectionately and he cares about you. Watchfully. All right. This is talking about a word cares. And in so many people have not understood this. It's like it's a prayer. Cast your cares. Just cast your cares on Him.

People don't know how. People don't understand that that's not a prayer that's actually talking about an entire teaching set of how to have the mind of Christ, how to control your own thinking how to develop an ability through the word to literally be in control of the negative emotions, and not them controlling you, not allowing the mind games of people in your world to get into your head. Or the enemy, the master of this game the greatest gamer on the planet until Jesus. How does he do it. Head games. How do you do it. Mind games. Then it goes on to say, but be well balanced, temperate sober of mind be vigilant cautious at all times for that enemy of yours. The devil roams around like a lion roaring and fierce hunger seeking someone to seize upon and devour. Stop right there.

Well when we talk what we're talking about are you talking about the devil because this is how he works. Everybody thinks the big bad devil comes in and does stuff. You know the big bad devil shoots a thought and starts the process. Nobody goes and murders someone, goes oh so they have no idea going to kill the guy. Oh no. There have been months, years of a thought process that continues to own him and obsession about how he deals with people and how he handles his anger and how he gets things out on people begins to rise up and he and the enemy knows how to feed it and bring it and feed it and, raise it up. Until he's got a tool in his hands to go do something. And not only for murder.

There are people who will rise up and take on churches take on pastors take on you take on your business and stand your ones to what is with this person. When people begin to give in to the beliefs the stuff that comes at them the enemy has plans and these plans work in this way. So it says here that after you're talking about cares and anxieties and worries and concerns and all this stuff. Now it says so because the enemy is like a roaring lion. He's walking around. He's coming to break your mind down. It's the only way to get through you because your spirit is full of Holy Spirit, your body's just a suit. But your mind is making all decisions. The battlefield is the mind. The battlefield is the obsessive beliefs about things that you believe which will corrode control your entire life all your relationships how you handle money how you look at leadership what you think about what you feel you can do etc.

Whether you become a manipulator whether you become a person who just does whatever they want to get ahead. And you've got all these other issues. It all comes down. To this area. Then it says withstand him in that same scripture, withstand him, who we talking about, the devil. What are we talking about, your head, the mind games. Withstand him. Be firm in the faith. Then it says against his onset, rooted, established, strong, immovable, determined, and knowing that the same identical sufferings are appointed to your brotherhood the whole body of Christians throughout the world. People take this verse and go see, suffering from God. Get into context, the suffering is the constant barrage on your head, the constant mind games that rise up. If you think that little negative voice in your head is you then who's listening? Good. A born again head is you then who's listening? Good. A born again head is you then who's listening? Good. A born again believer who has followed the teachings of Christ ought to have a mind so clear and a purpose and a focus so amazing that the enemy can't get past this phenomenal shield, this armour, and they can walk and move and sense and hear and know at a level that the planet has never seen before.

It's almost like this is a god-child. The whole planet of believers. He's like this is a god-child. The whole planet of believers. He's like this is a god-child. The whole planet of believers. He's going to be at war with their thinking. But now listen to me. The whole planet of unbelievers. He's after their minds too because he has no ability to express himself and his will. So he must work through the beliefs of a country, a planet. How is it going to go this way. I feel like I should. When you get into the word Satan is not omnipresent only in one place at one time. We know he's got different levels of demons he got powers principalities et cetera. We know for the Study of the Old Testament. They even have territories that they focus on and look at. And so it says that Pergamus and then in the book of Revelation was the seat of Satan himself.

There was a reason why he was in that city trying to manipulate the minds of the leaders of that time. If you're going to be the devil and the world doesn't want to believe in him the devil take a look. Some of these leaders have killed 30 million of their own people. Hello. Like, I am not embarrassed of what I believe and what the word says, you ought to see the stupidest beliefs the planet's got about all this stuff. OK so where if you're the devil. Whose mind you're going to work on. What are you going to be focused on the most powerful individuals on the planet that are shaping beliefs shaping your world. They're going to be in politics. They're going to be in money. They're going to be in Hollywood because movies are determining the entire culture of the world no matter what city I go to in the world.

It's amazing. Everybody's wearing jeans dress shoes or runners, a jacket, just the style is around the planet because every city is listening. They all know who the stars are. They all understand the language of Hollywood even though it's transcribed or it's put into their language the culture of Hollywood the morals of Hollywood what they believe what they think et cetera is it is literally just sweeping the world that is why TV so important to us here at springs. You don't have a voice unless you are on a television platform speaking something and on all the other platforms that are there.

This emerging generation is always emerging platforms for us to just do church services and go wisely and so into TV you know what's this issue about communities get back at church. Listen churches job is to reach the nation with every kind of thing we can. If you want to know who's seen more souls won to the kingdom and doesn't even serve Jesus Christ. I'd say Bill Gates. Computer programs, all the stuff he's designed invented that gives us access to the gospel and translating it and sending it and doing it.

You know they think they're just making money and just helping people communicate. But smart churches and those who are leaders in the kingdom they don't sit around playing church and just setting up blue chairs and doing meetings. No they're after the world there after the city after the minds of emerging generations and you get all the buzz about no no no we are in a sweet spot as a church because God has given us a television channel giving us all the skill to enable people as we're rising up and taking services and tons of other stuff here. We need to recognize who would Satan go after to control their thinking, who's going to go after to begin to think them in certain directions.

So there's an attack on your mind wouldn't be Satan himself he's not worried about me or you. He's got bigger things to do. But one of his cohorts. OK. There is a dark world. There is a dark side. They've got an agenda. They don't have power. Which is why it's just deception it's just lies deception lies deception. The Bible says submit to God. Resist the devil is second, submit to God. Resist the devil what does it mean to submit to God. You submit to his word. You find out truth because truth will set you free. You don't play mind games with people because it's just one empty head taking on another empty head is just one person's belief system taking on another person's belief system. It's one person with their finite brain trying to get their way with another person. Whether it's your spouse whether it's business whether it's whatever but truth when you know truth there's freedom where there's not God's truth there's no freedom.

The fear of man is a snare. It keeps you controlled by whatever beliefs have taken you out and take you on. One of the most powerful things that we'll unpack later. I want to touch on it is in Philippians chapter 4 where it talks about the anxieties and the cares of this world and it says rejoice in the Lord. You know the Bible says that we can have the mind of Christ. We can have his emotions his feeling his thinking. But then in verse 9 under the inspiration of Holy Spirit the Apostle Paul breaks down the systematic way of controlling your mind. One of the principles he says finally brethren and this is about meditation, and he says whatsoever things are true. Whatever things are noble, whatever things are just and then he goes on pure, lovely. He goes on to good report virtue praiseworthy meditate on these things.

Focus on these things the enemy will come in he'll attack your mind with a thought. And people who do not question their own thoughts think there's got to be truth to it. Cause I feel it. So many people think everything they sense is God. And very few people have cleaned up their mind and renewed their mind to the ability to hear God and His direction consistently, they listen to their beliefs their beliefs rise up and every situation, when a thought comes to your head the very first word that you look at is, is it true, well. I think it is we don't care what you think the, the court of law right now that's out is can you be absolutely sure what you're thinking is true. No but I think they feel that way about me. I think that that's who they are I think. And you're judging hearts, you're judging people's intentions.

Do it to your spouse you will drive them away from you. Do it in your job you'll begin to disrespect the boss, begin to do it in a business relationship. And what once worked so well begins to be deteriorated because you begin to think along a certain line or someone begins to attack your thinking to control you and to get what they want out of that business relationship. And if you can't control your own mind then you take what's not true. Now if something is not absolutely proven to be true, you're not. To dwell or focus on it. He's saying don't think on it because if you do you won't be able to control your mind, your emotions, your thinking, your judgment, your ability to sense and hear and know God is you won't even do the very first step. If I don't know absolutely it's true I'm not thinking about it then I'm not focusing on it.

Some people are really good getting in your head. This whole world prides themselves on mind games. It's amazing how the best, you know, when you look at all these kids, we call them gamers right now. I mean, there are always different games around the planet in the computer that they're in. Gaming is so huge. But this mind game that is played has a person, an entity on this planet that is by far the best, his name is Lucifer. He's a fallen angel. He's a pro at mind games. He is amazing at getting people obsessed about things that destroy their marriages. He's a pro at getting somebody obsessed, until they're even possessed where someone will go kill. Where someone will go destroy like some world leaders that have killed 30, 40 million of their own people. People don't do that, until the mind games have been played. The BS, the belief systems have been planted.

And this person has taken on a journey that justifies everything they do. The Bible has a lot to say about this, but because it's written in a language, you know, like Elizabethan is the interpretation. But we've gotta understand the language that is being used today. Satan got into Eve's head. He got into Adam's head, too. Everyone thinks it was just Eve. No, no, no. When a man stands by and just says, "Yes, dear". While she makes the biggest mistake of her life, and he joins her. There's a problem here. The mind games were going on in both heads. He's a pro at mind games. And people often don't recognize the mind games that are going on in every relationship. Everywhere, advertising, it's a mind game. It's trying to plant something in your head.

The belief you need that car. You got one perfectly well, runs fine, but you need it. Like, everything's mind game. Movies, they're planting something in you. They wanna get you and grab your emotions and take you. It's all acting. It's fiction. It's made up. But you'd be, "Oh". Or wiping tears come pouring down your face as that movie is after your mind. It's playing mind games with you. It's trying, and so I know that your mind can be used in positive things as well, and that there's a way to touch people. But there's a negative side to the mind games. You play them all the time, consciously or unconsciously. There'll be people here who are really good at it. And you think because you can't get someone's head, maybe you can take your spouse on and you can just silent treatment them or say some things that hurt and just change that whole relationship and so you win.

But there's no winning with mind games, because at some point even the dumbest person married to a mind game player will feel like, yuck, will just feel awful. The Bible does not tell us to stay dumb till He comes. The Bible does not teaches to be, like unaware and just, you know, a knapsack on my back and just tiptoe through life. And just, you know, read the read, pray for power. The Bible's very clear about how to control your own mind. Because if you don't, that's right, somebody else will. Someone's gonna own you. Someone's gonna take you and have you thinking a certain way.

If you don't understand a biblical response, that your brain is precious, your brain's amazing, the emotions that come out, what you believed. There can be things you believed about an issue, your spouse. The things you believed that are so ingrained in you by your parents, your tragedies, your triumphs, your traumas, your beliefs. That you are literally obsessed with that thought. And you will carry that thought out through every divorce. You'll carry that thought out to every relationship. And you will try to inflect that thought on everybody else because you're obsessed with this thought and you treated as true, and it's not true.

The Bible says you'll know the truth, and the truth will set you free. When we allow people or the enemy to play mind games. There's a snare that begins to happen. There's a bondage that begins to happen. There's a restrain that begins to happen. Now, many people will even think others are doing this to them. But nobody can make you feel anything that you don't accept, your feelings are your response to what goes on around you. So your belief, your BS is your belief systems and so, and we've talked about that. But the best mind game player on the planet is the devil, and he wants to hold you. He wants to snare you. He wants to keep you obsessed in a rut that keeps your thinking contain. And yet, according to the Bible, 1 Corinthians 2:16, "For who has known or understood the mind, the counsels, the purposes of the Lord so as to guide and instruct Him with knowledge. But we," Listen to this. This is amazing! "But we have the mind of Christ, the Messiah and we hold the thoughts, the feelings, the purposes of His heart".

Where do we hold them? Within our spirit. Holy Spirit's within us. By virtue of numbers, there's a high percentage of people who are living out somebody else's thoughts, beliefs. People will, every relationship there'll be a struggle for control. Every marriage here you will pep play the control game as though you need to win to get what you need, to get what you desire. And so you've gotta get good at mind games as what everybody thinks. And if you don't know how to do relations biblically, you will begin this control. Whether you work through silent treatment. Whether you work through a shame. Whether you work through innuendos and sarcasm. Whether, it's just amazing what goes on in the insecure minds of people today. You go to work the people play mind games. They're trying to get in your head. They're trying to get. And the enemy has gotten into our heads. Okay?

We've all been raised with things that limit us. Things we believed about ourselves. Things we believed about marriage, about sex, about anybody even attempts this like. There's just such, I don't know how to explain it. It's just, these messages so crucial to you today. Because there is a biblical way to step out of the mind games that go on, that takes place on this planet. And have a mind that begins to feel the feelings of Jesus. Have a mind, Jesus was never own by anybody. People could not guilt Him. People could not move Him off course. You could run to Him saying your friend's dying. You need to be here. And if it wasn't a part of the plan, you couldn't manipulate Him. He was, it was impossible to manipulate Jesus. He wasn't this softie, just putting out letting anybody do anything. This Man, this King of Kings but He's all human had a mind, a brain so powerful. That it wouldn't just sit there and worry, wouldn't sit there in guilt. It wouldn't sit there, you know, thinking about what people think about Him. His mind was a constant.

And the Bible says we can have the mind of Christ, the thoughts of Christ, the purposes of His heart, a mind at peace. We live in a world with zippo peace. We live in a world where everybody thinks it's normal that, you know. One of the biggest addiction right now is glasses of wine in the afternoon. I was talking to addictions counselor at Alberta. And he said, you just wouldn't believe, you know the people, they have a classy little glass of wine for the afternoon. But if I had one dang bad afternoon I need two. You know, or it's actually to mellow up. They're gonna legalize marijuana. This is awesome. It's a herb. Everything's cool. You know, it's not addictive and all the good stuff. I just gonna, you know. And you don't realize that, that we're moving down this line. It's, if you want to have a mind that is at peace, I'm gonna show you. I'm gonna help you to develop a skill. It is something the Bible's very clear on.

"Oh, Leon, I just pray. My mind goes free". Baloney. Okay, you might have these little quick glimpses of peace. But to walk out a mind that is in control, a mind that embraces the freedom of truth. You'll know the truth and the truth will set you free. So let's drive into some stuff. And I hope that, you know, this will help you as we, I want to talk about the word "cares" for a little bit. Now, the Bible's very clear that cares are something that destroy you. The word "cares" includes anxieties, being anxious, being moody, being worried, being fearful, focused on wrong things. I looked through the word cares in the Bible in Psalm 142:4, this is David talking and he says, "Look on the right hand the point of attack and see, for there is no man who knows me to appear for me. Refuge has failed me. I've got no place to flee, no man cares for my life or my welfare".

The Psalms are interesting, mostly David at its worst. Okay? If you're happy and you read them. They can be depressing. If you're going through something and you read them, you get a sense of, "I'm there. I've been there. I am there". The enemy wants you to think that you've been cut out of the herd. Nobody cares about you. No one understands you. It's one of the most common temptations to people. The church doesn't care. My family doesn't care. Nobody cares. David is echoing this. Nobody cares! In Mark 4:19, it talks about these cares. It says, "Then the cares, the anxieties of the world. The distractions of this age, this time, the pleasures, the delight of false glamour, the deceitfulness of riches, the craving and passionate desire for other things creep in".

It doesn't say rush. It says creep. It's like old underwear that just creeps up on you. It says, "Creep in and they choke and suffocate the Word, and it becomes fruitless. God's Word is so incredible, so powerful. It sets the mind free, like it set the spirit free. It begins to bring wisdom. It begins to make the human mind become aware. It gives it direction. It gives it discernment. The Word of God gives a correct belief, correct truths, and it clothes the mind and it makes it strong wherever cares, anxieties, focuses on the wrong things. Beliefs begin to come in. It's whole goal, the enemy's whole goal is to break your mind down. How does he do it? He does it with these issues of cares, anxieties, distractions. This verse is loaded with messages. When you begin to talk about, that when you get distracted off of who you are, God's calling your life. That distraction is gonna take you in places that are gonna hurt. That distraction is gonna take you places where you are literally gonna be choked out of life. You're gonna be suffocated from the very freedom that you have in Christ and your life becomes fruitless.

What does fruitless mean? Well, if you got an orange grove and there ain't no fruit. It's fruitless. Your life stops bearing results. You stop sensing and feeling this progression. Life moving somewhere. Life going somewhere. And the enemy wants to put a thought in your mind that, "That's because of who you're married with, because of where you go to church, because of who your born, because of the color of your skin, the language that you speak. It's because of this". And he'll try to get you to release this initiative to change and instead hand it to somebody. If I hold you responsible to the issues in my life, I have no ability to change me because I'm giving you the credit for where I'm at. One of the greatest lies of the enemy.

"Well, Leon, you don't understand". Oh, I'm not letting them off the hook for the pain, the heartache, the jerks that they are, if they are. I'm just saying your responses and your beliefs and the handing to them the control and all your future and all your focus is a huge mistake. Because the only way to change is to bring that in and say, "Jesus is truth. And I'm not gonna allow a thought, a belief, that my future is finished because of you. I'm not handing you that kind of power". But it feels good to blame someone else. Blame your spouse, blame something, blame the economy, blame the Prime Minister, blame. So, and when you do that, when you start playing the blame game, the excuses game. You walk out of an ability to change and you don't believe you can. Then you're mad at somebody. Whoever you hold accountable, you're mad at them. You begin to hate them. You begin to, literally, they become your God because they're controlling your life. They're controlling your future. Something they've done that you reacted to is now messing up your thought life. And everything you believed has consequences.

In Acts 7:51, it's a stunning scripture. Jesus is speaking here, and He says to people who loved God, who knew the Bible. These were the ones who knew the Bible the best. Here's what He says to them, "You stiff-necked, uncircumcised in heart and ears, you," When He talked about private parts you know He's a little ticked. He says, "You always resist the Holy Spirit, as your fathers did, so do you". Wow, okay! Holy Spirit is always trying to bring you truth. He's always trying to bring you freedom. He's trying to guide you to light. He's trying to show you what's real and what's not. What's a castle of cards? What's a belief that's wrong? And all of us have them. And only God's Word will bring light to the very beliefs, the very motives, the very purposes, that are within us. That come from a lifetime of beliefs. That come from a lifetime of tragedies, traumas, heartaches, hurts, being belittled.

And maybe teaching, maybe you've got in teaching that caused you to have these ideas, these beliefs, and you hang on to them. And Holy Spirit was trying to get through to these men who love the Bible. They love God. And Holy Spirit is trying to get them free from these beliefs that went wrong. And they were stiff neck. They were stubborn. This is the way it is. When you're in the middle of a problem, when you're in the middle of a crisis and someone tries to help you with truth. And then, "Don't you dare"! You got a problem, dude. You don't want truth. You wanna hang on to your belief. You wanna hang on to the obsession that controls you in that relationship. The obsession that controls you in some area of your life. You're allowing those beliefs in. And Holy Spirit's job is to lead you into all truth.

And people can be stiff-neck against Holy Spirit, stubborn and back off. We must have a submissive heart that says, "I need help". No wonder the Bible says in James that confess your faults one to the other. Then it says, you can be prayed for and healed. You know why it says, it's not because we all should get together and just have this bury your heart moment. It's because people who think they're always right. That's a pride. That's an arrogance. Pride goes before destruction and a haughty spirit before a fall, is where your stiff-neck with Holy Spirit. And nobody can speak to you. Your spouse can't speak to you. No one around you can speak. You are right, and you know you're right. This is the way it is. And you've got all these walls built up as to the reasons why you don't bear results in areas and in issues from money, to sex, to marriage, to finances, to your kids. And your stinking pride will drive everyone your kids off because you won't admit there's something that's going on in your life.

This is such a mess. This is such a mind game the enemy is playing with you. Because if you wanna win, you gotta submit yourself to the teaching of Holy Spirit. You must submit yourself to the brilliance of God's Word. The Bible says submit one to the other. Why would it say that? Because you see things about me that I don't see about me. You know, my eyesight is pretty good. Peripheral vision is pretty amazing. I can see my, if I look straight ahead I can see this hand to there. If I look at this hand after looking straight. I can see right about there. At the best it's 180. There's an entire world behind me. There can be a lion up behind me. There can be a guy with a knife sticking up behind me. Maybe someone to surprise birthday cake, Cora. You know, or whatever. I would not know. I can't see. Everybody here is blind to their own faults. They're own stinky thinking. The issues that have planted themselves in your beliefs and you walk them out.

The reason stiff-neck, prideful people destroy everything in their lives, is because they're destroying it and don't know it. They're destroying it and superimposing it on other people, so they don't feel like it's them at all. It's one of the, it literally is one of the greatest tricks of deception, is that you see in others the very thing that you are doing to them. The Bible says submit to God, resist the devil and he'll flee. The enemy wants everything that you think, everything that you believed. He wants you to be looking at people, blaming people. He wants you to have wrong conclusions even if you've got right questions. He wants you asking the wrong questions, so you've got wrong conclusions. He is a pro.

There is no way in your humanness you are able to deal with the devil. He has been the one that tempted Eve. He tempted Adam. He's the one that mind game Nimrod. He mind game that King Ahab. He mind game Gideon. He mind game Moses. He got Mosses out of the promised land because of the bullies. You go through the Bible and you watch the mind games. The obsessive things with certain areas that caused all of these leaders in some area of their lives to be hurt and not be able to walk into freedom. And you'll realize he's a pro. His brain has been alive for thousands of years. He's tempted everybody, all different personality types. He understands at this better than anybody. He understands psychology in the hundreds of different kinds of psychology.

Some of the brilliant men and women who wrote books over the last hundred years and looks so brilliant but that mind if it wasn't washed in the water of the Word. You know, it's deeper and deeper and deeper. But there's none of it that's bringing freedom. The Bible very clearly, you know, in Philippians 4 gives us something to work on, a skill set that you must do with your thought life, to not question your thoughts is to let them run free and you think they're your own. But every thought that enters your head is not your own. You say, "Well, whose is it"? Well, if it's your thought, who's listening?

Now, the Bible teaches the enemy can shoot thoughts. He doesn't have much power. Jesus stripped him of that. All he can do is lie. He's the father of lies and he brings lies to you about you. He brings lies to you about your marriage. He brings lies to you about your health, about money, about God, about your job, about everything he can. He just wants your life to be in disarray. He wants to come to kill, steal, and destroy. And the only hope is someone who's a billion times smarter than him. Holy Spirit and He lives within you and I. Let me show you something in closing. The Holy Spirit taught us through the apostle. It's in Philippians 4:9, He's talking about rejoicing in God, having the peace of God. It says, "Finally, brethren, whatever things are true, whatever things are noble, whatever things are just, pure, lovely. Whatever things are of good report, if it's virtuous, praiseworthy, meditate on these things".

Ever talk to somebody or maybe you got a relationship with somebody who's great at mind games? Ever meet somebody messed with your head? Our world prides them self on that. That they just, "I'm gonna get in his head. I'm gonna get in her head". And, you know, and it's amazing how people don't realize there's some people who have no idea that the thoughts, the ideas, the beliefs that owned them aren't even their thoughts. It's not even God. It's somehow people, born again, spirit-filled believers, followers of Christ, have never developed their mind. Though the Bible's very clear, Romans chapter 12, that if you do not take control of this mind and it gives you a systematic way to do it. That if you're not running it, if you're not controlling, somebody else will be.

And it's amazing to me like, there's the battle for whose idea wins. Married couples, you know, if you don't know and learn how to make your marriage work, every marriage will fight for control. And what they desire, what they think, what they feel. There'll be an argument as the way they see things and what they think is going on. And then there's other spouse comes back and there's this battle of wills or this battle of ideas. There's this battle of what they think is going on, and it's just moves at every area. We've got to understand that people wanna get in someone's head, some people are really good at it. They just love to mess with people and get in their head, make them worry about something and just drop a thought that bothers them for how long. And we've got to take control of our mind.

If a belief, an idea gets into your head, and you don't know how to deal with it. You will become, listen to this word, obsess with it. You'll start living like it's true. You'll start reacting to this thinking, this obsession. You will live it up. Your reactions in life, in relationships, at work, will just be skewed. They'll be wrong because you've never learned to control your mind. You've never learned to control your emotions, your reactions, and because of that you're at the mercy of every person who's a good manipulator. You're at the mercy of any person that wants to get in there and manipulate you. When it comes to mind games there's a person that is better than anybody. When it comes to planting thoughts, you know, getting people obsess about something, controlling them in an area, and his name is Lucifer, a fallen angel. He played mind games with Eve and he got her.

Everyone thinks he wasn't playing mind games with Adam. Oh, but he was. Because although she was tempted to do it, he was messing with his head and Adam was being the Mr. Nice Guy, "Okay, sweetie. If you think so". Where's the guts here? Where's the man that standup for his fam. Hey, let's talk about it. No! Let's talk about this. On and on, all through the Old Testament this gamer, this mind gamer Satan was messing with people's minds and planting thoughts and trying to move them in directions. He was getting them obsessed. When someone today goes into a school with a gun and starts killing people. That's a person who's moved from obsession to possession. That's a person that, "Oh, did this just happen? Oh, I think I'm gonna shoot". No, what's going on took days, and not just days, weeks and not just weeks, months of working and thinking, and working and anger, and working and blaming others and etcetera. Until the thinking, that the mind games that was playing with that person got him what we call obsessed. And then he controls him in to doing horrible, hurtful things.

There are people who destroy their own marriages, and they could have made it. But it was their obsession with what wasn't true. There are people who destroyed relationships and businesses because they begin to think and believed things that weren't true. But to them it was and that's the way they saw them. In today's vernacular, it's my truth. No, it's your obsession. You didn't know what truth is. So the enemy, he's a mind gamer. He is gonna work on every one of us. The Bible's very clear, if you wanna know.

You see, here's the other thing. You got no chance with him. You put your mind against his mind? You have no chance. You had what? 30, 60, 80 years on the planet of understanding people, learning people, having discussion with people, walking things out with people, relationship building and destroying and everything else. He's been at it for thousands of years. He understands personality types. He understands the very thing that people craved, their temptation, their desire for entertainment. He understands the desire to meet with people. The enemy of our souls is brilliant at mind games. He's got no other power. But the Bible says, lying. He's the father of lies. So he shoots a lie in, gets you to hang on to that lie, until that lie controls your thinking, what you believe.

When you're controlled there, you react. Wrong! When you react. Wrong! You cause repetitive cycles in your marriage, in your home, and finances, in addictions, in every area of life. Because it's not just the physical thing. But there's this repetitive cycle that just keeps going and it's your belief systems driving it. Only the truth sets people free. There's only one person better than the enemy at this and that's God. He can shut him down so fast and He's a trillion times smarter than the enemy. Which is why Holy Spirit within us will lead us into truth. And the Bible says in John 8:32, and the truth will set you free.

There are people here that have been taught wrong beliefs. You have wrong ideas about things. Marriage, family, money, sex. You name it, and relationships, and how destructive stubbornness is and pride that I believe I'm right. And habit you'll never change until you submit yourself to God's Word. And you literally submit yourself one to the other. Welcoming input saying, "Why would you say that? What do you think? What do you mean by that"? Rather, "Not a chance. I'm telling you right now". And so this stubbornness is pride. It leads way to destruction. And the way the enemy will try to get you is to make sure that every problem in your life is not you. It's somebody else. They did it to me. They caused this. It's my mother. It's my father. It's my coach. It's my pastor. It's my church. It's the color of my skin. It's where I came from. It's this person that hurt me. It's this person that.

Okay, there's a lot of good stuff. But the reaction and the beliefs that you have even if you were hurt. And I'm not taking anything away from something as traumatic as that. Why hand that person the rest of your life? Why developed belief systems and ideas that they owned you and everything you react to from now on. I refuse to give somebody else and say, "I'm like this because of you". Which means I just handed you my whole life. Which means I'll never be able to change until you change me, or I'll never be able to change until you change. It's not even true in marriage. Don't hand your happiness to your spouse. Don't hand who you are to your spouse. They can handle it. You can handle it. You have got to get in to God's Word and learn truths.

In 2 Corinthians 10, there's a stunning portion of scripture that the body of Christ has struggled with and misinterpreted for years. Listen to 2 Corinthians 10:3, "For though we live in the flesh in this physical world, we are not carrying on our warfare according to the flesh, our fights not with people and using mere human weapons. For the weapons of our war. This is the war were talking about are not physical weapons of flesh and blood, but they are mighty before God. These weapons we're about to talk about are might before God for the overthrow and destruction of strongholds". People grab this verse and they started binding demons and screaming at demons. And flying helicopters around the city to take a fortress' down and pulling down strongholds and territorial spirits this side of the river. And just develop this whole teaching on intercessory prayer and demonology and none of that even applies.

Taken in context. It says, "Inasmuch here if we're gonna talk about the warfare as we refute arguments, theories, reasonings and every proud lofty thing that sets itself up against the true knowledge of God". Now, everyone here could say, "Okay, see, we're talking about arguing with people, debating with people". No, no, no. These are on your own head. "And we lead every thought and purpose away captive into the obedience of Christ the Messiah, the Anointed One". The battle that is going on right now with the enemy, a master at manipulation and lying, is your head. It's your mind. It starts as a thought. It's planted like a seed. And then he'll reinforce it, have others say it. He'll bring evidence into your life to confirm, that what you're thinking, what you're believing is true. So he can move you along a line and destroy you.

John 10:10 says this thief comes to steal, kill, and destroy. So when a thought hits your head, "Oh, I'm gonna think about this. That's my thought. There's a reason why I feel this way". No, there's not. There's lots of stupid reasons why we feel, how we feel. Feelings are true? No. They're not. They are mostly wrong. They're an emotional reaction to something that happened to us and it comes from our belief systems. I'm stupid. I'm dumb. I could never make it. No one loves me. No one likes me. This is happening because. And all this stuff that is not true. So the enemy fires. There's a battle that's going on. It's a mind game battle. And when that mind begins to agree with God's Word, faith comes into aligned. The miraculous, the presence of God, the power of God, flows in a very powerful, beautiful way. You know, very few people today are at peace.

Most people there's a struggle. There's an anxiety. There's cares and worries. That nonstop go on in their mind. And they don't realize that you'd gotta cast that care down. You have to deal with that thought. Now, that thought that you have to pull down is an argument. Do you have an argument with yourself? It's a theory. Everybody here is developing a theory about their marriage, everybody. You got a theory about your marriage. You got a theory about your husband. You got a theory about your wife. You got a theory about your church. You got a theory about why things happened the way they are. This theory is this BS. It's this belief system that you adhere to, and you've thought this theory through. You've reason it. It says arguments, theories, reasonings. You've reasoned through why things happened. And we reason through them wrong, if we don't use the Word of God because the enemy just lie, lie, lie, lie, lie, lie. And these thoughts begin to own us. They begin to control us. Until we, you study this Canada and America, and the consumption of everything that's mood-altering and depression helping and got to do with our blues and our downs and our struggles and. I mean, Grade-One.

I tell the story a lot. I was walking through the hallway of our Grade-One class. I was out walking around, this little guy in Grade-One looks at his friend and says, "I'm so stressed". From where do you hear that? I heard it from mom or dad. You know, I've heard other say, "I'm just confused". These words, this thinking. This is, we've got this entire human race. Why is there a war? There's a war that's after your head. And there's enough people around you already whose minds have been manipulated. Mind manipulation by thoughts, by theories. And the Bible's very clear that these weapons that we've been given. This level of Christian living is to pulldown thoughts. "Wait, what about demons"? You can pull them down. They're here. "Sounds like I just cast them out".

Oh, really? "I bound them in the name of Jesus". How long does the demon stay bound? Where did you cast him? When he's gonna come up again? When can you, you bound him forever? You cast him into hell? Oh, this is ridiculous. Oh, he's gone quiet on that one. No wonder it hasn't work for anybody trying it. The issue isn't that he's so powerful. The issue is an understanding that there's a truth in God's Word that will set you free. And when your mind focuses on this truth and truth begins to rise up. And you submit, you humble yourself to God's truth. There's a freedom that comes to you that is incredible. There's a peace that passes understanding. There's an ability with things going on all around you to get up and have, the Bible says, the mind of Christ. In the Amplified it says, His thoughts, His feelings, His reasoning, His faith, His ability.

You know, you can go, you can have a problem. Maybe it's a big fight with your spouse and things are getting shaky. They'll wreck your entire week. Maybe it's a situation at work and it could go south. Maybe you're gonna lose your job. There goes your whole week, your whole weekend. Because this thought of what might happen because of the situation begins to get real estate in your head. And if you do not deal with it, this thought will make you bring pain into your marriage, pain with your kids. Everywhere you go, it will, it just make your unhappiness live.

You heard me tell the story one time about being at Disneyland with Sal and some of the kids. We were sat down force to grab a quick bite to eat because we're hungry and so we got in the door. Here was this, you know, good looking family. A dad, a beautiful wife, good looking couple and two gorgeous little daughters. You know, and they had their hair up in there. Minnie Mouse little headsets on and things on their hair, and they're ready for a day. But we sat down, and when we sat down, this guy was sitting on the chair and he had his legs crossed in front. He's just staring at his feet. I'm watching them. The little girls were kind of, you know, moving around. Mama go, "Sshh, sshh". And they just sat there. She sat there. He sat there. We ordered. We ate. We laughed. We talked. We got up. We left. When we left 40 minutes later, this man staring at his feet. You could see that he was owned. Something owned him. There's a thought that owned him. There's a fear that's got so deep in him. He's at one "the happiest place on the planet" with the most important people in his life. He can't even disengage from this thought.

Someone told me about the eagles in British Columbia, that sometimes you'll see one floating down the river. The reason is, is that apparently this eagle goes in and it will hit a fish. It will see a fish and it goes diving on the water. And when it hits this fish and this talon claws around that they can't let go. They locked, until they get into the nest. And as they kind of the wings settle in and then it unlocks. So if you hit a fish too big that you can't lift out. And you'll see when they hit the water and they sink in. Then you'll see this thing flapping and working to lift this thing up out of the water and carry it. If it can't and it can't unlock its talons. It goes down and it drowns.

The first time I heard that story, it reminds me of people whose marriages are going down, whose health is going down. They're filled with fear, anxiety, worry. They're giving everybody a piece of their unrenewed, unhappy, negative mind. They're destroying everything around them. And they can't get release of this thought. They can't release this mind game planted thought that now owns them. There's something gorgeous and beautiful about God's Word. God's Word is truth. It will set you free. But the Bible says you have to submit to God's Word. It says, resist the devil and he'll flee. But first it says, submit to God.

In Philippians chapter 4, very, very crucial portion of scripture, verses 4-9. It talks here about you getting rid of anxiousness. It talks about you getting a peace that passes understanding, mounting a guard on your mind and mounting a guard. It doesn't even say peace flowing. It says, it's a mounted guard. That's incredible. It's like what, a great big angel? There's a mount of guard over your heart and your mind. If you wanna have the mind of Christ, a mind of peace, a mind that in the midst of turmoil going on all around them. Relationships not going well, and you've convinced yourself you can't be happy until your spouse is happy. You can't be happy until this problem is solved, that work. You can't be happy until you figured this part over here.

And so anywhere you go now, guess what? You're never gonna be happy. Because you're always gonna have problems, and that problem gonna owned you. You're gonna locked your mind around that problem. There goes your day. There goes your evening. There goes your family time. There goes your work time. There goes time with the guys just hanging out. You can't enjoy anywhere, time with the kids, because your brain is out of control and you can't control it. The Bible says you can. Holy Spirit is our helper. You need to question every thought that is in your head. God's Word is the downloading system you need to make your brain work right. God's truths are the truths that will cause you to walk through and in a marriage with a way of thinking that works. God's truths will clothe your mind and cause you to be such a blessing in business. God's truth will attract people to you. Because they look in your eyes and they see love, acceptance. They feel that you look at the positive, the good.

You're not judging them looking for their problems. You're not gonna analyze and psychoanalyze and judge their spirit, their mind. They're gonna know you got discernment. You're the church cops or whatever it is that you think, people sense that off you. And they back away from judgmental people who develop ideas and beliefs about those around them and you need to understand. See, people do that to me all the time. And I find a thought, I can worry about that. There's a wreck every day, every lunch, every family time, every holiday, everywhere I go. Or you can just go, "My mind is aware. It's aware of all the stuff. But me to enjoy today, I'm not allowing anything to have real estate space in my head from focus. I'm gonna make sure that I choose my thoughts. We've gotta, there's gotta be an openness in us that just chooses. I'm no longer going to live in the beliefs that are wrecking my marriage, my health, my kids. Where I can't bear fruit, there's a problem.

I just wanna challenge you today. The thoughts that go through your head, only you can begin to change the reasonings, the arguments, the theories, and the strongholds that your brain's continually forming. And make them submit themselves to God's Word, by reading it, listening to teaching. Whether you got to do, I think I listen to an hour, a 30-minute teaching every day. I don't care what it takes. You got like 15 hours of conscious work-play. Then start out with a teaching. Read something. Get your brain in the Word. And then begin to get up and have that mind clothe with the peace of God, that mind clothe with the strength of God. That no one can mind game you, manipulate you, plant something in there to bring fear, plant something in there to cause you to become upset. Your reactions aren't what they want and the enemy can't either, because you are a mind founded on the powerful Word of God.

Have you ever had someone that you just knew at work or maybe for a while when you got married? It was just mind games. It was just trying to get your way by how you talk in the suggestions that you planted in people's heads. The way you treated people and then change it up, so they were always second guessing. We live in a world that prides itself on mind games. Leaders of countries will play mind games with people. They'll play mind games with staff. People will play mind games trying to climb up the corporate ladder. When mind games happened in relationships and in homes and families, it's bad. And I think it ends a lot of marriages and homes and relationships.

And so today, we're gonna talk about mind games. But I wanna go to a scripture and it's in 1 Peter 5:7-9, it says, "Casting the whole of your care all your anxieties, all your worries, all your concerns, once and for all on Him, God". So this verse in the King James talks about casting your cares. Casting your cares. That word "casting" means "throw them". The word cast literally means throw. So it's not saying ease them on to God. You know, work them progressively on to God. There is this casting. It is this rigid, strong movement that you have to do with your mind, to resist. I'm not letting the mind games of the enemy or anyone that he uses or anyone else in my circle of relationships that plays mind game with me because they're not mature. They don't understand.

Maybe it's a wonderful person not realizing they're playing mind games. Which is the planting of thoughts that aren't true. Which is the planting of ideas that are wrong. But if you get them planted it serves that person somehow, a boss, a marriage, a brother, a sister, a mother-in-law, a father-in-law, it's siblings, etcetera. Everybody's doing it, most I think don't, aren't aware of how wrong it is and how they're destroying people relationship. So when it comes to a thought that gets planted, it always raises up anxiety. That's why it's a mind game. Satan planted a thought in Eve. She's not everything she could be. What? I'm not everything I could be? And all of a sudden, she became concerned about that, focused on that, worried about that. She began to care about that. What, who she's trying to be more for?

All these things became planted in Eve's head as she talked to that serpent or to Lucifer. And why wasn't Adam and her taking him out of the garden. Why were they listening? They were supposed to protect it, looked after it. So when ideas, when thoughts are being introduced into your mind, they will come from other people and other people's fears. People who are in fear loved to get someone else to embrace their fear with them. Let's both be fearful. And if you're not fearful with them, then you're just not making sense. You're just in another world. You're being naive. You're not being responsible, etcetera. And so the Bible says, to cast your cares and all your anxieties and your worries and your concerns once and for all on Him.

Now, we talked about it in another message that there's a difference between focus and aware. You are aware of the problem. You're aware of their attitude. You're aware of what could go wrong. You're aware there's a problem you need to fix. There's aware, there's a relationship you need to begin to be careful with. But to be aware and to be focused on, are two different things. When you are full on having to deal with it. Yes, you're gonna get focus on it and you're gonna deal with it. But in life every day to try to have relationships, have fun, have coffee, have lunch, go home after work. And if all you are as your brain is locked and focused on a thought that's been planted. And other people will plant that thought or the enemy can plant a thought. A lot of thoughts are blasting through your head all the time. At the rate of 1.200, you know, words a minute, just blasting through your head.

But then there's one that will grab a fear and the enemy knows. He's been around for thousands of years tempting Eve. He tempted Adam. So he's a pro with this your mind is no match for him. There is no psychology in the world today, no brilliant person who was not saved and who's mind was not renewed with God's Word. There's no brilliant person out there that can have any hope of being a match for Lucifer. So much of psychology when he's got no righteousness, no biblical foundation, seemed so brilliant, so deep, so smart but it goes places that don't bring freedom. It's interesting. It's fascinating. And even many of the people that wrote much of the psychology, people are just amazed when you study their personal lives. That's when you find out how some of them were brutally bad.

So, casting your cares. God doesn't want mind games from the enemy. He doesn't want mind games from people around you. And I believe there are demonic mind games where Satan's influencing others to come against you and to say things and to do things. There are also thoughts that have been planted in your head as a child. Thoughts that someone's planted in your head somewhere through abuse, through traumas that happened to you, or conversations that took placed when you were more open, and someone said something to you. I know it was pillow talk. I don't know if it was just at that time of real friends talking. And it was wrong, but the thought got planted. And the games began and you're trying to live this healthy life with these things that were planted are wrong.

So they all begin to cause us to be worried, to be anxious, to be trying to change something. And so the Bible says, get rid of it, throw it off, cast your cares. There's someone listening right now who's so stressed, so depressed, so all over the place. You don't even know. You can't get a thought held in your mind because you got ruling thought over here and a ruling thought over there and a belief system. These are belief systems and they're opposing and they're all mixed up. There's just no synchrony. There's just no synchronize way of your beliefs, and what you believed and what's going on. Your brain, you never know where it's gonna go next. You don't like it. You gotta cast these cares on God.

And then I'm gonna talk to you about how to begin to get a mind of peace, a mind that is brilliant, the way God wants it to be. After our talks about casting your cares, anxieties, worries, concerns. And then it says, "He cares for you, God does, affectionately cares about you watchfully". There's a verse that I found, that it was just so beautiful when you look at cares. Because the Bible says in Mark 4:19, "Then the cares, the anxieties of this world and the distractions of this age, pleasure, delight, false glamour, deceitfulness of riches". Riches is always deceitful when you get focus on them. "And the craving and passionate desire for other things creep in and choke and suffocate the Word, and it becomes fruitless". It says here Jeremiah 30:17, "For I will restore health to you. Health to your body, health to your mind. I will heal your wounds, wounds to your body, wounds to your heart, says the Lord, because they have called you an outcast, saying, 'This is Zion, whom no one seeks after and for whom no one cares.'"

If you ever thought that no one cares about me, no one really is there for me. People don't really, even the people that I love. They're just in it for themselves. You gotta understand how much God cares. In Deuteronomy 11:12, God is talking about a country He's prepared for the people coming out of Egypt, which was Canaan. And look what it says how much He cares just about the place they're gonna stay. He says that Canaan would be a land for which the Lord your God cares. The eyes of the Lord your God are always upon it from the beginning of the year to the end of the year. He prepared a country for His people. So amazing that His eyes never left it. He was continually preparing it. You know that God's not a respecter of persons. And because you're giving your life to Jesus. He cares about your life, your marriage, your finances, your children, your home. He cares about what people are saying and doing. He cares. He understands the temptations, the hurts, the heartaches. All of the things that are going on and God totally cares.

So when you look at this mind games, you have to understand that it's talking about casting your cares. We're gonna go back now to 1 Peter 5:7-9, cast your cares. It says, "He cares for you affectionately, cares about you watchfully". Then it says, "Be well balanced temperate, sober of mind, be vigilant cautious at all times, for that enemy of yours, the devil, roams around like a lion roaring in fierce hunger, seeking someone to seize upon and to devour. Withstand him, be firm in faith against his onset rooted, established, strong, immovable, determined, knowing the same identical sufferings are appointed to your brotherhood the whole body of Christians throughout the world".

All right! Let's get the context of this thing. People think, "Oh, boy! The whole world is suffering and struggling". As though their suffering and struggle with sickness. As though all the promises of God don't work. The curses were in the life. No, He's not talking about any of that. He is literally talking about the cares, the anxieties, and the distractions that are completely coming against you. When it says Satan like a roaring lion is attacking you. Whose ever had a demon coming and wrestled them down or pushed them to the floor? He's talking about the assault against your mind. He's talking about the thoughts that come whistling into your mind that aren't yours. Someone right now saying, "You know, I have so many horrible thought". They're not yours. The origin is not you. The origin is probably the enemy.

You say, "Well, do you think so"? Well, he's never gonna talk to you like in a third person. I think you're bad. I think you're weird. I don't think anybody likes you. You know, you can tell them there's an evil voice speaking in your head. It's gotta be first person. I'm stupid. I'm bad. No one likes me. It is how he'll begin to mess with your head. And you got to understand that every thought is not you. And when you begin to realize you go, "Thank, God. And well, can I do something with my mind"? Yes! You can begin to deal with your mind then you can be having it so amazing. It will be like the mind of Christ, His emotions, His feelings, as we talked in one of the other programs.

So stop also looking at everybody else for your emotions, for your attitudes, for your failures. Take responsibility because the first thing that we wanna do when we feel bad or yuck or whatever, is we wanna blame someone else. We can't find anything wrong with us. Because the ways of a man are right in his own eyes. So I was talking about this one day to group of pastors. How many here always know what they're doing is right? And they're all, nobody would put up their hand. They knew they were being played about something. I said, "How many here know every decision you make, everything that you do, that you're doing it right? You're right. Again, no one put up their hands. I said, "Well then, that's ten times worst because that means you're doing things you know you were wrong". And then they all kind of laugh.

All of us do what we think is right. And when someone, when something goes wrong in our lives, when things aren't going the way we want them to go, we automatically looked at somebody else and we begin the blame game. This is where all of a sudden you have no power to change. And it's a human nature. Even when God walked through the garden after Adam and Eve had eaten of the fruit, the excuses began. The language of excuses began in the garden of Eden. God said, "Adam, where are you"? Looking around and they hid themselves. And so Adam said, "Well, we were afraid. We hid ourselves because we're naked". And God said, "Who told you, you were naked"? And then right away its, "The woman you gave me". Then for the woman she goes, "It's the snake that you made". And the snake, "Well, he didn't have a leg to stand on". Bad joke. But it just keeps going down, being blamed until, and this is where you lose all ability to change. It's the blame game. It's not accepting.

Now, you can say, "But Leon, it's not my fault. I was abused". Oh, I get it. "Leon, you don't understand. I did have an accident. And that guy, a drunk driver took away my legs. Leon, you don't understand. I was completely verbally abused my whole life. And today, here I am struggling with my self-worth. Angry all the time". Oh, I understand. You know, after 30 years of over my pastoring and counseling with families and working with people as a pastor. I've seen it all. Yeah, I have seen it all. But, you still have to make a decision. Stop blaming others for your emotions, your attitudes, your failures now, and take responsibility. An incredible sense of freedom begins to come as you begin to go, "I no longer have to live under the power of those things". Those things caused misbeliefs, wrong beliefs to rise. The enemy, his whole purpose with bringing pain into your body. You know what it is? Mind games.

The reason, you know, the reason he wants someone to say things about you, to hurt you, to abuse you. It's because of what it does to up here. You begin to feel that you're less. You begin to not function with the gifting God gave you. You begin to not walk the paths that God's prepared ahead of time for you. You don't live out the incredible destiny, the giftedness, the life that is in you. He's trying to attack your very purpose for being on this planet. And so he does it through others. And it's not right, okay? And I'm not gonna get into the ifs on this right now. It's a fallen world. So you have to make a decision.

The Bible teaches us, I can do all things through Christ who strengthens me. That means I can be healed from the effects of that abuse through Christ who strengthens me. I can be healed physically from that accident on that drunk driver. It's through Christ who strengthens me. But the area I wanna focus on are the locked-on beliefs that you have. And there you gotta understand that you can change these beliefs through Christ who strengthens you. That way you are not at the mercy of somebody else's talking mind game. Whether it's the enemy that use these opportunities. Maybe even it was a good meaning person.

I've talked to so many Christians who walked away from church because they've lost a loved one, something happened to them. And the pastor not understanding the Word of God, I would say something like, "Well, you know, everything happens for a reason. And I don't know why. You won't why. You'll know in the future. But, you know, everything happens for a reason. God's in control. So we need to kind of accept it". You can go, "How do you accept a three-year old dying of brain cancer screaming in pain? How do you accept a child being raped repeatedly and then killed"? That's the stupidest thing I've ever heard. Don't allow that kind of dumb teaching to come in where, "God is that sick of a God. That He had a purpose. He wanted that to happen". Whichever way they teach it. Wrong!

So whatever someone has said to you now, that has made you turn against God. That has made you have beliefs about yourself. That the enemy has played mind games and he has got you off of the love of God. He's got you off of the purposes of God. He's got you off truth. That's what the Bible says, my people perish for a lack of knowledge. Everyone thinks a lack of doctrinal knowledge. Well, I think that's a part. But I think in most cases, people who are struggling and perishing in relationships, bodies, minds, ministries, businesses. They're perishing for a lack of knowledge about themselves. They need more information about why you act the way you do towards your spouse, your kids, the people around you, opportunities. Why you don't embrace and rise up without assertiveness of going somewhere which is as passive and waiting for something. Whether everything makes you mad and angry.

When someone gets close to you, you become an angry person. Why you've never had close friendships? And you believed it's just a bunch of lousy people out there. I've never meet the right person. No, it's you. But you should face it. You know, and why is my marriage so messed up, and why things not the way I want them? And it's who I marry. I'm gonna find somebody else. I'm gonna move somewhere, to a different person, a different job, a different location. Here's the problem. Everywhere you go, there you are. So, I might be pushing a little hard right now, but I wanna breakthrough to people. Stay where you are. Keep walking out what you're walking out. But all change takes place within you first. Change that happens externally that doesn't happen internally never last. But if you allow Holy Spirit, like it says in the book of John, to begin to lead you into all truth.

Those truths are the things, the mind games that have been played from your childhood until today. That had been planted and caused the anxieties, the cares, the worries, the stresses, the belief systems, the stubbornness, the arguing, the things that make you destroy the relationships around you. And blame whatever cause and allow that mind game to take place. Truths sets you free, John 8:32 says, and when you know truth, it sets you free. There's a freedom that comes that is, you're never gonna be free if you play the blame game. You're never gonna be free, unless you submit yourself to the teaching of the Word and to the people around you. James teaches us, that confess your faults, your slips, your mistakes, to one another. Then it says, ask for prayer and amazing things happen. Because most people won't look at their blind spots. It's not talking about, "Go, find all your past sins and blurt them out at someone". No. They're under the blood. They're as far, washed away as far as the east is from the west.

What right now are your faults? Do you even know them? You know, the greatest fault on the planet is to not be aware of any. You're faultless. It's the way you talk and the way you act. God wants to guide you. His Spirit is here to guide you into all truth. Because you can't change others, you can only change yourself. You can't change your spouse. You can't change your dad. You can't change your mom. You can't change your boss. You can't change your friends. But you can change everything in your world with Holy Spirit. Others can say things, you don't react with anger. Others can do things, you don't react in a way that's hurtful. Others can talk about you and try to hurt you, but all of the emotional responses are totally in your control. And God can make you so strong and so free. That none of them are able to hook you.

You know, the Bible verses got something where it says that the enemy has nothing in me. There's a verse in the Bible, that he's got no hook. He hasn't been able to get a mind game of thought that comes in and lands. And there's so many verses that talk about this that will cover and maybe in tomorrow's message. But understand God's love, understand that He cares about you so beautifully. But until you submit to His Word and to the people that God brings into your life. There's always people in your life that will point you in right directions. Ephesians 4:26-27, says, "Be angry, and don't sin. Let not the sun go down upon your wrath and give place to the devil". Whenever you are an emotional turmoil, it will always be fear and anger-based type of stuff. That when you don't deal with it within 24 hours, processed it. Ask God to help you cast the care of that thing on Him and be free. Night after night it drives deeper and deeper in to your heart, until you don't have a mind belief. You got a heart belief.

And so to deal with those strong emotions and to not do that. There's people who seem right now for years you've been in anger, for years you've been upset at people, for years you're blaming others or judging others. Because you're judging their motives which is forbidden by God. You're judging their intentions. Now, you can judge actions, but you're not allowed to judge the heart which is the person. Did they intend to hurt you? "See, I'm sure". It doesn't matter. Don't judge that, because if you do, it causes incredibly painful things to go on in your life. The Bible says in Romans 12, you can renew your mind. And that's when you're gonna begin to walk out God's perfect blessing for your life. So begin the process, just say: God, I'm open to all the things I need to change within me.

If you're gonna function in your relationships, you need to be aware that people consciously or unconsciously are always playing mind games. They're always planting thoughts and trying to change the way you think about stuff and, I can't really call it mind games. No, I think we need to for the lesson today. Recognize then there are experts out there who are good at playing mind games. You know, I remember one time, having a friend of mine in my relationship circle that came to me and told me, you know, I know, you know, how you doing? Isn't, and I'll make the name up, isn't Larry an amazing guy? He's so, I just love that guy. And yeah, you know, just, I don't wanna get into it. I can't. But Leon, just be careful. There's things that he says that, and anyway, I shouldn't use it. Enough said.

Just, you know, you know what you're doing. Be cautious. And that's it. And they wouldn't even. I've said too much, I'm so sorry. They were a brilliant mind gamer. They knew how to plant the thought that made me watch this friend all the time and doubt his heart, doubt that he was really there, begin to not take him into confidence or as we're putting things together in ministry, not taking him up, because this person has successfully planted a thought. People who always have to be their best friend. Needy, needy, needy, needy people who are always trying to control the friends and their friendship circles and they'll talk to one gossip to another, drop this piece there, that piece there. They are playing mind games everywhere out of the neediness of their own heart. And it goes on to, I can explain how work goes as people play mind games and work and etcetera, etcetera.

And then spouses to each other. They play mind games. There's a control thing going on 'til they learn to submit to God's love and how to love them properly. Their love is toxic. It's conditional. And then there's a battle going on. Whether it's silent treatment. Whether it's saying something that sparks fear in them like, "I'm not gonna be here if you keep this up". And just things that just create fear and it's all mind games. It's trying to control someone and no one you love should be controlled. That's not love. And so, today, as we dive into this, today's topic, I want you to understand that Satan is the best mind gamer on the planet. The best. He worked it with Eve. Adam. He worked it with Nimrod. He worked it with the prophets of old. He got them out of their ministries. He's trying to get you off kilter.

You know, the Bible says in the Amplified in Ephesians 2:10 that God's prepared paths for you ahead of time that you should walk in them. Now, that means he knows your giftedness. He knows your likes and dislikes, your passions. He knows where He can take you and be the most powerful with your gifts and abilities. Where you'll be the most loved. Where you'll be the most engaged, satisfied. And those are the paths that He's prepared for you. But the enemy knows that any path God prepares is to destroy His kingdom because Jesus said, "I'm come," and that, you know, to bring life and he came to destroy the works of the enemy. So we put what Jesus did into effect everywhere we go. When we bring the Gospel, we are putting into effect this destroying of the enemy's kingdom. This reaching of the lost. Building businesses, families, homes, careers. God wants all of that in your world.

So the enemy, he will try. So you're no match for the enemy's mind in your own mind. But when you have the mind of Christ, when Holy Spirit who is now your tutor, your coach, your helper, he is a billion times smarter than the devil. Not even just a little bit. A billion times smarter. And you don't even have to try to understand the enemy's strategies. Just learn to follow Holy Spirit. If I was in a brutal jungle filled with wild animals, poisonous snakes everywhere, quick sands, dry sands, poisonous vines, berries, I mean, and it takes this guy a lifetime to learn them all. I can say, "No, you gotta teach me all this stuff or another way to get through that jungle to where I'm going". It's just to listen to that guide who grew up in that brutal jungle where he says put your feet here. Follow me there. Don't touch that. Don't eat that. Just be quiet. There's a leopard walking by. Don't even play with that animal. Just whatever he's doing. We're gonna camp right now here. We're gonna be up in the tree now. Whatever he says, I would just follow him.

Holy Spirit is so brilliant, so amazing. He'll lead you into all truth about yourself and the Bible says and I know their name and I lead them by name. They know my voice. I lead them by name. Following God is the most brilliant thing and His principles that you can do. I wanna read a verse to you and because knowing that God loves us is so crucial and this is an issue that so many people struggle. When we talk about love and we've talked about this before but there's two kinds of love that Christians use. Toxic love and then agape love. Or God's love and then the fallen love. Now, fallen love or toxic love loves conditionally. If you're beautiful enough, if you look after me enough, if you do the right things in our relationship, if you have the right attributes that I'm attracted to, all these different things that are conditional. You don't, you do. Then I'm gonna reach out and love you.

So then love's very selfish, it's usually what I need. A lot of people say I love you but what they want is for themselves. And not loving with God's love which is an unconditional love. It's loving you when you can't do anything for me or even if you don't do anything for me, I will still love you. It's the kind of love that is needed in all that we do. Now that doesn't mean you can take an advantage of, for example, in business. You don't go into a partnership when you can tell and you're very aware that guy is never gonna value you as a partner or love you. He isn't a person that doesn't walk in God. You'd be a fool to get into partnership with him. That doesn't mean that you get married and allow your spouse to walk all over you and you have to walk in love. No. If you love them so that you care about them and their welfare, then there's gonna be a strong love.

There's gonna be a confrontational love because they're gonna destroy themselves even treating you the way they do. They're gonna destroy your marriage if you don't change. So love isn't roll over and just do nothing. No, love though is for them. Love is, and when people begin to argue, I love you but you're, and again, you're talking to yourself. You're hurting me. You're killing me. I'm leaving. So this love is crucial. Not a toxic love but an unconditional love that has an ability to love through the bad times. 1 John 4:17 gives some brilliant looks at love and God's love and it doesn't matter which way you look at this, everybody is looking for love.

Let me add another word for some of the men. Looking for value. You're looking to be loved, valued, honored, believed in. Everyone wants to live an important life. Everyone wants to be values. Everyone wants to be loved. And they'll go after drugs. They'll go after career. You know, they'll use their gifts for something. So as we look at this verse, let's unpack this a little bit. 1 John 4:17-21. Here in is our love made perfect that we may have boldness in the day of judgement because as He is, Jesus, so are we in this world. We can love like Jesus. We can have the thoughts, the feelings of Jesus. We can function like Jesus.

Jesus said the things that I do, shall you do also. The kind of relationships he had, we can have. Then it goes on to say there is no fear in love but perfect love, in other word, perfect there means mature because someone's saying no one's perfect. No, no. It means mature love. It throws all fear, it casts out fear because fear has torment. Whenever you're trying to love someone, we're talking about relationships now and it's not working, fear rises up. There's rejection, divorce, leaving, cheating, pain, heartache. All these kind of stuff and the Bible says that fear torments you in that relationship. And he that fears isn't made perfect in love or mature in love. We love Him, now we're talking about God, we love Him because He first loved us.

Now that shows how imperfect we are. That we're learning and growing in this but God loved us. When we were, you know, people who were selfish, self-centered, still struggling with it, doing things that are maybe hateful and brutal and it says He loved us and because of that love, we begin to understand He loves me. He died for me. Jesus made a way. He's got a plan. Whatever way you begin to come to realization that God is in love with me, that all of a sudden, that's what makes you begin to reach out in love to Him. Then it goes on explaining this love of God. If a man says I love God and hates his brother, he is a liar. Alright. For he that loveth not his brother whom he hath seen, how can he love God whom he have not seen? And this commandment have we from Him that he who loves God loves his brother also. People who really do know that God loves them and they've gone into God's Word to see that God loved them so much that even though the human race turned against him, He had a plan right from the beginning, sent His own son to die on a cross, to take the sin of the world, and change His form forever.

Did you know that at the right hand of God, Jesus is there, but many people don't realize he's still in this human body? What? Yeah. He's still in a human body. And he's got nail holes in the hands. He's got a hole on his side. He's got rips and scars on his forehead and scalp. And you say why? Why does everybody else go to heaven completely healed, cured? Why not him? Those scars as he sits at the right hand of the Father, he sits there as the intercessor. Doesn't mean he's sitting there praying for everybody. That this intercession means he's there representing the human race, that he died for you and I, suffered for you and I, took the sin, the sickness of the world and has changed it forever. And so, when you begin to understand that when God sent His son, He knew that His form would change forever but that they could win. Those who would choose Jesus could spend eternity with Him in heaven rather than losing all of his creation. Okay. He can save those who would choose him.

So, when we talk about God's love, as you begin to discover Jesus, this is when the only way I know that works to discover this unique kind of love, because if you look at Jesus and you see this unconditional love, this sacrificial love, this ability to love when people refuse to love back, this is the kind of love that Jesus had. Now, when you and I begin to experience this love, believe this love, it changes us towards everybody else. In fact, that's the way you notice God's love changing someone. It's how much you love everyone else. When I look at people coming into our church and I can think of different people.

I can think of one guy right now, him and his wife and he was an alcoholic and she was just broken and such broken heartedness about things in her past and his. But he just got grumpy, mean alcoholic. And one day, he gave his life to Christ, was totally set free, and to watch that man love people, genuinely wanna help people, even when they turn on him, only God could do that. We love Him because He first loved us. To begin to learn that love, to begin to look at the cross and how Jesus died and he was buried and he suffered in our place, he rose again for a new life. When you begin to discover the truth from the cross to the throne, you begin to love. You know, I know that I wanted God in my life but I would say there was a big time in my life that I just did it because I knew it was right. I knew that, which I think was fine at that time, I knew the truth.

There is a God. Jesus did come. I knew that I needed to go to heaven. I did not want to go to hell forever and so I chose Him and I asked Him to help me and I tried to live the best that I could for Him. But it wasn't 'til a place and point in my life where I began to understand what Jesus really had done. How he'd come and suffered, sickness, disease, he took the sin. And all these things so that I could be loved and be in the family and go to heaven and it was then that I began to love him more and more and now instead of trying to convince people to serve Jesus with fear which is what I used to do years ago, it's very rare that I do that. You know, the Bible does say in Jude that you'll say some through fear like an awe of eternity like speak straight. They're on their deathbed. They don't want God. They're cussing away. Speak to some. But the Bible says the goodness of God that leads a man to repentance.

All the things that you're struggling with when it comes to the mind games, the things you've grown up. Why have I gone on this direction of love? Because God cares for you more than the land of Canaan that He cared for and never took His eyes off of for His people. He cares for you and He's watching you. God loves you. He wants to take care of you and so you've gotta believe this. Until we believe in God's grace which is this desire to love you, His favor that He wants to heap on your life and give you and He's actually already given it to you, that you access grace through faith. You've gotta believe this love and there's people watching right now that if you would just start saying everyday, "I love God because He first loved me. He loves me. He loves me". Stop focusing on, "Do I love God enough? Am I loving God enough". No. Focus on how much God loves me. God is so in love.

So learn to love and then learn to recognize that God's love will cause you to treat your spouse differently. It'll blow them away. Even how you raise your kids or you have friendships. It doesn't mean you'll be taken advantage of. Follow Jesus in Matthew, Mark, Luke, and John. The historic Jesus. He was never taken advantage of. No one walked in there and mind gamed him and made him, "Okay, no, no". So I don't mean wimpyness at all. This is the most powerful, strong. It's to have the love of God because people around you are loved with that kind of love. Even when you say, "No, I'm not gonna do that. No, I know you want me to do that but it's wrong, I'm not gonna do that, sorry". But you don't do that out of anger and you're doing it out of love and value both for yourself and for that person.

I really wanna leave today this imprint in you that to know God's love is crucial and if you don't, then you're gonna live needy. You're gonna live shallow. You're gonna live arguing. You're gonna be a mind gamer trying to get others to love you the way you feel you need to be loved and when you finally get them to do it, there's no satisfaction. I need you to tell me in the morning and kiss me goodbye then tell me you love me. I need you to hug me seven times a day. I need you to make love to me. All these things and so you manipulate them, you force them, you guilt them, which is what mind games do and you're arguing and these are my needs. And we understand that but that's not the way to have them met. The way is to go to God and have all of your love needs met from God.

You know, there's a saying. People say, "Happy wife, happy life". That's a ridiculous saying. That puts all of your joy attached to your wife who could never keep you happy. She could never live her life and doesn't even want that drain of having to keep you happy. So, yes, we want to love others. But to take the pressure of keeping her happy, you're not gonna be able to do that. How you gonna keep your wife happy? You don't even have the power, okay. That's between her and God. Now you can love her with God's love. You can fulfill your role as husband and friend and lover and do what's right. But don't move over to taking over Holy Spirit's job where all of a sudden, Holy Spirit needs to work on them but you think you have to be Holy Spirit's job or vice versa.

I can speak to women about trying to change that man, that I've got to change him. I can be happy 'til he serving God right. I can't be happy 'til he loves me this way, 'til he speaks my love language. But if you're smart, you'll also recognize that if others don't ever change, can you see love? So, wherever you are, don't allow, like read a good book and let it change you. But don't hold somebody else to that book. I mean, talk about it, laughingly, lovingly as couples and together and yes, grow together in the knowledge of how to love each other and share your needs and what you desire, what you would like and back and forth but the moment you start playing mind games and anger and emotion and trying to manipulate and think, you are now not in the God's territory, you are not in Satan's area of expertise. This is how he does it. It's not how God does it.

God loves and His love is so overwhelming that you just want Him. You want more of Him. It's the goodness of God that actually changed the word repentance means to do a 180. I'm going in this direction. It's the wrong direction. So repentance means to turn and go that way, the right direction. So it is the love of God that leads a man to repentance. The more you see God's love, God's caring love, His value for you all through His Word and as you go into His Word which is why His Word is so beautiful, you'll never be the same again. God's not gonna play mind games with you. It's not His way. He's gonna love you and tell you right to your face, you're precious. You're beautiful. I love you. I have a plan for you.

Even in the middle of a mess you made and the wrong things you did, I love you. Come follow me. Let me help you, God is saying. I'm not gonna force you. I'm not gonna make you. You've got free will to do whatever you want but I love you and I pray that you let me love you. Accept me to save you and let me be with you and help you through life. That's God's desire but so many people think God is for their worst because preachers somewhere have taught that. Here in 1 John 4:17 is our love made perfect so we can have boldness in the day of judgement.

In other words, when you accept what God has done for you, even when you die and you haven't lived a perfect life, it doesn't matter because Jesus lived the perfect life and accepting that God loves you so much that His grace just needs to be believed, you no longer fear death. You no longer fear judgement. Even when you're walking around, you're no longer afraid God might send a tornado. God might send a car. God might allow a sickness to take you out. You're not afraid of any of that. None of it comes from God. Okay. That peace, that love just makes you rise up and love others and when you begin to love God, when you begin to recognize how valuable you are, you can now love others properly whereas before, you had needs. You needed them to love you, recognize you, say things, do things.

Now you love them and you recognize that they need help and you can help them. The Bible says, you know, take the two-by-four out of your eye, the beam out of your own eye before you try to take a splinter out of the other person's eye. So it's not saying you can't help somebody. It's just saying most people are so, have such a big beam in their own eye, they don't even realize the reason you're trying to help that person is because you want something from there. You need more hugs. You need more love. You need what you want from them so you're never gonna deal with them correctly. Because of your neediness, you're gonna deal with them incorrectly and it's gonna hurt them. You're gonna damage them. So you discover God's love. Get this beam out of your own eye and find this love. Be complete in Him.

Now, you know how a person, for example, in marriage who's desperately trying to find my missing half. No, you're a complete whole person who doesn't need this spouse. You choose. And that's a much higher compliment and for your spouse as well with you. I know I've used spouse examples because it's some of the best examples. But even when it comes to work, even when it comes to friends, in-laws, out-laws, mother-in-laws, siblings, people who are going through a rough time or they are an angry person. They might not even be safe. Fine, then keep them out of your children's life if they're not safe. You know, love doesn't mean we're naive. Love just does something to you that causes you to judge things properly, discern things effectively, and to treat people right. And your life goes in a direction so fast you can never do on your own. 1 John 4:17-21, read it over and over and continue to say, "I love God because He first loved me".
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