The third thing you’re going to have to do to obtain victory in trying times is you are going to have to get your mouth in gear.  That simply means you are going to have to speak words of faith that are in line with God’s Word.  Once you have made the Word of God final authority and made a faith-based decision in line with God’s Word, you are going to have to see to it that your words line up with God’s Word.  James 1:26 says, “If any man among you seem to be religious, and bridleth not his tongue, but deceiveth his own heart, this man’s religion is vain.” The word vain in that verse means devoid of force, success, or result.  The word vain also means useless or profitless.  You can make a decision in line with the Word of God and seem to be religious, but if you do not get your mouth in gear you will see no profit from the decisions you have made.  Your mouth is so powerful it can mess up everything you do spiritually.  You can pray a prayer, but if you talk contrary to the Word of God after you pray, the Bible calls your praying useless.  You can sow a lot of good seeds, but if you talk contrary to the Word of God, your sowing will be profitless and you will see no harvest.

Your words are very powerful, and when you are in a trying time or in a dark place you need to get your words working for you, and not against you.  Psalm 23 is probably one of the most well-known Psalms written in the Bible.  It goes like this, “The LORD is my shepherd; I shall not want. 2 He maketh me to lie down in green pastures: he leadeth me beside the still waters. 3 He restoreth my soul: he leadeth me in the paths of righteousness for his name’s sake. 4 Yea, though I walk through the valley of the shadow of death, I will fear no evil: for thou art with me; thy rod and thy staff they comfort me. 5 Thou preparest a table before me in the presence of mine enemies: thou anointest my head with oil; my cup runneth over. 6 Surely goodness and mercy shall follow me all the days of my life: and I will dwell in the house of the LORD forever”.  Many people don’t know the circumstances that were surrounding David when he wrote this Psalm. David wrote this Psalm in a trying time, in a dark place, when he was under great pressure.  He was fleeing from King Saul and his army.  David took cover in a barren and desolate forest called Hareth, which means baked earthenware.  David is running for his life, and he has found himself in a dry place with no food or water.  In this dark place, in this pressured situation, David gets His words working for him and starts speaking words of faith.  David was in a pit of sorts, and he could have complained, had a pity party, and spewed words of doubt and unbelief, but he knew in the situation he was in that he needed his words working for him and not against him.  Most people who are in the pit or experiencing trying circumstances aren’t using one of their most powerful tools, their words.  It is no wonder some people have camped out in their dark place and have been there so long.  You do not get out of the pit and experience victory in trying times by speaking words of doubt and unbelief.  Yielding to unbelief, doubt, and discouragement never caused victory to manifest in anybody’s life.  When we are in that dark place and facing trying times, we need to use our words the way a mechanic uses a tool to repair a car.  That mechanic uses a specific tool on purpose with a purpose to fix a problem. When you are in the pit you need to use your words on purpose with a purpose to fix the problem.

It is also important to note that you will not obtain victory in trying times by being silent and by saying nothing.  Quiet people who say nothing are operating in passivity and will not come out of the pit until they open their mouth and speak words of faith.  Revelation 12:11 says, “And they overcame him by the blood of the Lamb, and by the word of their testimony.”  That tells us right there that if we are going to overcome we are going to have to say something to do so.

Speaking words that are not in line with God’s Word is one of the worst things you can do in a pressured situation.  By speaking in such a way, many people are using their words and digging themselves even deeper into that dark place.  Proverbs 6:2 says, “Thou art snared with the words of thy mouth, thou art taken with the words of thy mouth.”  Proverbs 10:14 says, “The mouth of the foolish is near destruction.” Proverbs 18:7 says, “A fool’s mouth is his destruction, and his lips are the snare of his soul.”  You can see clearly from these scriptures that by saying the wrong thing in a trying time you can get yourself into even deeper trouble. However there’s another side to this.  If you will say the right thing and speak words that are in agreement with God’s Word, your words will play a key role in your deliverance.  Proverbs 12:6 says, “The mouth of the upright shall deliver them.”  Proverbs 13:3 says, “He that keepeth his mouth keepeth his life: but he that openeth wide his lips shall have destruction.” Proverbs 14:3 says, “The lips of the wise shall preserve them.” Proverbs 12:13-14 says, “The wicked is snared by the transgression of his lips: but the just shall come out of trouble. A man shall be satisfied with good by the fruit of his mouth: and the recompence of a man’s hands shall be rendered unto him.”  I want to submit to you that no matter how dark the situation you are facing is, if you will speak words that are in line with God’s words, you can overcome and triumph in the face of that darkness.

One of the biggest challenges you will face in a trying time is the challenge of not allowing your circumstances to dictate your speech.  You must not allow the dark place to infect your language.  Don’t let the pit you are in determine your confession.  It is the confession of faith in the pit, in the dark place, in the trying time that will bring deliverance.  David exercised this principle so beautifully in 1 Samuel 30.  David and his men were returning from battle and upon doing so they found their homes destroyed and their families taken.  Verse 3 describes it as such, “So David and his men came to the city, and behold, it was burnt with fire; and their wives, and their sons, and their daughters were taken captives.”  David has found himself in a VERY dark place facing VERY trying circumstances.  The beginning of verse 6 says, “And David was greatly distressed; for the people spoke of stoning him.”  David’s own men wanted to kill him.  David is at a crossroad.  He has some choices to make.  He can have a pity party, feel sorry for himself, and be defeated by the devil or he can stay in faith and overcome.  The last part of verse 6 reveals to us the choice David made.  It says, “but David encouraged himself in the Lord.”  David did not allow this dark place to infect his language.  He did not allow the pit he was in to control his confession.  He did not allow his circumstances to dictate his speech.  In the middle of some of the most trying circumstances any individual could ever face, David held fast to the confession of his faith and got his words working for him and not against him. Because David responded like this, because he got his words working for him and not against him he experienced a great victory right in the middle of troubled times.  If you read the rest of that chapter you’ll find that David and his men pursued the enemy, defeated them, and recovered every person and every thing that the enemy had taken from them.  In that dark place David’s words of faith had everything to do with the victory he experienced.

Your words can hurt you or they can help you in the pit, so make sure you choose to speak the right words.  Proverbs 16:30 says, “He shutteth his eyes to devise froward things: moving his lips he bringeth evil.”   In the dark place you can literally bring forth more evil by speaking evil things.  Sometimes people are their own worst enemy.  Many times peoples’ mouths are their biggest problem and not the devil.  You cannot afford to speak doubt and unbelief in that dark place.  By doing so you perpetuate darkness, evil, and negative things in your life.  Proverbs 10:11 gives us the positive side of this.  It says, “The mouth of a righteous man is a well of life.”   In the pit your mouth can be the place from which life, victory, and deliverance springs. So get your mouth in gear and speak faith, speak life, and speak victory!

James 3 likens the tongue to a bit in a horses mouth and a rudder on a ship, with the revelation being wherever the bit goes the horse goes, wherever the rudder goes the ship goes, and wherever your words go your life goes.  The second key to obtaining victory in trying times was to make a decision.  Once you’ve made the decision of where you are going, use your words as the rudder of your life to steer yourself there.  In other words, if you want out of the pit, if want out of the dark place, if you want victory in troubled times, then steer your life in that direction with the words of your mouth.  If you wanted to go from your house to your local supermarket but you were always turning your car in the opposite direction, it would be impossible for you to get there.  The same holds true for your words and your life.  If you want victory, you must not turn your life away from the victory that you desire with the words of your mouth.  You cannot expect to reach your destination if you are always turning away from that destination with your confession.  Until you get your mouth in gear, you have no scriptural right to believe that you will ever be freed from the pit or delivered from the dark place. However, if you’ll determine in your heart to only say what God says, you can literally steer yourself out of the dark place and into victory with the words of your mouth.

The enemy is after your mouth because he knows without it he cannot control your life.  In Luke 11, we clearly see that the enemy is always trying to get us to say the wrong thing.  Verse 53 says, “And as Jesus said these things unto them, the scribes and Pharisees began to urge him vehemently, and to provoke him to speak many things: Laying wait for him, and seeking to catch something out of his mouth, that they might accuse him.”  The enemy is prodding and poking Jesus trying to get Jesus to say the wrong thing.  Satan knows if he can get Jesus to say the wrong thing then he can triumph over him.  Often times when a person has determined in their heart to only say what God says, the enemy will increase the pressure in an attempt to control their confession.  When Satan doesn’t like what you are saying he will always increase the pressure to get you to say something else.  It is a major priority of the enemy to get the Word of God out of your mouth.  Satan knows that if he cannot get the Word out of your mouth, then he can’t stop it from coming to pass in your life.

Let’s look at two examples of this in the Word of God.  In Daniel 3, King Nebuchadnezzar built an idol and commanded the people in the land to bow to that idol when the sound of music was played.  Shadrach, Meshach, and Abednego were three godly young men who would not bow down because God had told them not to worship any other gods.  Nebuchadnezzar had them brought in and told them that he was going to play the music one more time and if they didn’t bow down they were going to be thrown into a fiery furnace.  Daniel 3:16 says, “ Shadrach, Meshach, and Abednego answered and said to the king, “O Nebuchadnezzar, we have no need to answer you in this matter.  If that is the case, our God whom we serve is able to deliver us from the burning fiery furnace, and He will deliver us from your hand, O king. But if not, let it be known to you, O king, that we do not serve your gods, nor will we worship the gold image which you have set up.”  Satan knows that with these words in their mouths he cannot have victory in their lives.  Consequently, he has to do something to get them to say something different.  What does he do?  He increased the pressure.  Verse 19 says, “Then was Nebuchadnezzar full of fury, and the form of his visage was changed against Shadrach, Meshach, and Abednego: therefore he spake, and commanded that they should heat the furnace one seven times more than it was wont to be heated.”  Fire itself is already hot and will burn a person one way or the other so why did he have the furnace heated up seven times hotter?  This is an intimidation tactic of the enemy to get the Word of God out of their mouths.  Satan was tightening the screws down on them in an attempt to get them to change their confession.  They didn’t give in to the enemy’s attempt against their lives and in turn they experienced a great victory.  Verse 23-28 says, “And these three men, Shadrach, Meshach, and Abed-Nego, fell down bound into the midst of the burning fiery furnace. Then King Nebuchadnezzar was astonished; and he rose in haste and spoke, saying to his counselors, “Did we not cast three men bound into the midst of the fire? They answered and said to the king, “True, O king.” “Look!” he answered, “I see four men loose, walking in the midst of the fire; and they are not hurt, and the form of the fourth is like the Son of God.”  Then Nebuchadnezzar went near the mouth of the burning fiery furnace and spoke, saying, “Shadrach, Meshach, and Abed-Nego, servants of the Most High God, come out, and come here.” Then Shadrach, Meshach, and Abed-Nego came from the midst of the fire. And the satraps, administrators, governors, and the king’s counselors gathered together, and they saw these men on whose bodies the fire had no power; the hair of their head was not singed nor were their garments affected, and the smell of fire was not on them. Nebuchadnezzar spoke, saying, “Blessed be the God of Shadrach, Meshach, and Abed-Nego, who sent His Angel and delivered His servants who trusted in Him, and they have frustrated the king’s word, and yielded their bodies, that they should not serve nor worship any god except their own God!”

The second example is found in 1 Samuel 17.  David had been sent down to the battle by his father to bring supplies and to get an update on how things were going.  The moment David stepped on the scene out came Goliath.  1 Samuel 17:23-24 says, “And as David talked with them, behold, there came up the champion, the Philistine of Gath, Goliath by name, out of the armies of the Philistines, and spake according to the same words: and David heard them. And all the men of Israel, when they saw the man, fled from him, and were sore afraid.”  It’s no coincidence that the moment David steps on the scene out comes Goliath to try to put fear in him.  Satan perceived that there was someone on the scene who was a threat to his plan in this situation.  Satan knew there was somebody on the scene with enough faith in God to thwart his attempt against God’s people.  Verse 25 says, “And the men of Israel said, Have ye seen this man that is come up? surely to defy Israel is he come up: and it shall be, that the man who killeth him, the king will enrich him with great riches, and will give him his daughter, and make his father’s house free in Israel.”  These men were trying to get David to be afraid with them. They wanted David to be impressed by this “great warrior,” but he wasn’t.  It is important to be mindful of who you are spending time with because sometimes well-meaning Christians will try to get you to jump into unbelief with them.  When you are in a dark place, you don’t need to be hanging around people like this.  In verse 26, we find David’s confession of faith.  It says, “And David spake to the men that stood by him, saying, What shall be done to the man that killeth this Philistine, and taketh away the reproach from Israel? for who is this uncircumcised Philistine, that he should defy the armies of the living God?”  You can tell from these words that David is not only planning to fight this giant, but he’s planning to win.  Satan hates these words and knows he can’t get victory over David with these words in David’s mouth.  What did Satan do? He tried to tighten the screws down on David, and he used David’s brother Eliab to do it.  Verse 28 says, “And Eliab his eldest brother heard when he spake unto the men; and Eliab’s anger was kindled against David, and he said, Why camest thou down hither? and with whom hast thou left those few sheep in the wilderness? I know thy pride, and the naughtiness of thine heart; for thou art come down that thou mightest see the battle.”   What is Satan doing through Eliab?  He’s trying to shut David up and get those words out of David’s mouth.  David turned around and asked the people again, “What does the guy get who kills this Philistine (paraphrase)?”  That’s the first attempt of the enemy to get the Word out of David’s mouth. Then they sent David into Saul’s tent, and in verse 32, we hear David’s confession of faith.  It says, “And David said to Saul, Let no man’s heart fail because of him; thy servant will go and fight with this Philistine.”  Once again, Satan knows he can’t win with these words in David’s mouth so what does he do?  He tries to increase the pressure and tighten the screws down on David again, and this time he uses King Saul to do so.  Verse 33 says, “And Saul said to David, Thou art not able to go against this Philistine to fight with him: for thou art but a youth, and he a man of war from his youth.”  Saul was an expert warrior himself and had won many battles. Now, David has an expert telling him he can’t do it.  Sometimes the enemy will use so-called “experts” to try to tell you that you can’t do, can’t have, and can’t be what God says.  This is the enemy’s attempt to get the Word of God out of your mouth.  However, this didn’t change David’s confession.  Verse 34-37 says, “And David said unto Saul, Thy servant kept his father’s sheep, and there came a lion, and a bear, and took a lamb out of the flock: And I went out after him, and smote him, and delivered it out of his mouth: and when he arose against me, I caught him by his beard, and smote him, and slew him.  Thy servant slew both the lion and the bear: and this uncircumcised Philistine shall be as one of them, seeing he hath defied the armies of the living God.  David said moreover, The LORD that delivered me out of the paw of the lion, and out of the paw of the bear, he will deliver me out of the hand of this Philistine. And Saul said unto David, Go, and the LORD be with thee.”  Satan is trying to get David to stop talking words of faith, but for the second time in a row, Satan failed.  The enemy tries one more time to get these words out of David’s mouth.  Verses 41-44 say, “And the Philistine came on and drew near unto David; and the man that bare the shield went before him.  And when the Philistine looked about, and saw David, he disdained him: for he was but a youth, and ruddy, and of a fair countenance. And the Philistine said unto David, Am I a dog, that thou comest to me with staves? And the Philistine cursed David by his gods. And the Philistine said to David, Come to me, and I will give thy flesh unto the fowls of the air, and to the beasts of the field.”  Why would Goliath say these words?  He is much bigger than David.  In the natural he probably could have just grabbed David’s head and popped it like a grape.  These words were inspired by Satan spoke through Goliath and they were Satan’s final attempt to get fear in David and the Word of God out of David’s mouth.  Satan knows that he can’t win with words of faith in David’s mouth.  The only reason David won this battle on the natural level was because he first won it on the spiritual level.  This story isn’t about rocks, slingshots, and armor.  It is about a man whose faith in God was so great that he would only speak words that were in line with God’s Word no matter how great the pressure got.  Once again, Satan could not get these words out of David’s mouth.  Verse 45 says, “Then said David to the Philistine, Thou comest to me with a sword, and with a spear, and with a shield: but I come to thee in the name of the LORD of hosts, the God of the armies of Israel, whom thou hast defied.  This day will the LORD deliver thee into mine hand; and I will smite thee, and take thine head from thee; and I will give the carcases of the host of the Philistines this day unto the fowls of the air, and to the wild beasts of the earth; that all the earth may know that there is a God in Israel.  And all this assembly shall know that the LORD saveth not with sword and spear: for the battle is the LORD’S, and he will give you into our hands. And it came to pass.”  This story reveals to me that Satan can’t stop a man who won’t quit talking faith.  You may be in the darkest place you’ve ever been, but if you’ll keep the Word of God in your mouth and not allow the pressure to control your confession, you will overcome!  Satan’s attempts and strategies are no different in our lives than they were against Jesus, the three Hebrews, or against David.  The enemy will prod you and poke you through negative circumstances and pressure in attempt to get control of your mouth.  So if the pressure increases just dig your feet in and hold that rudder in place.  Winds may be blowing, circumstances may be getting worse, but you just keep that rudder in place and keep saying what God says.  You’re attitude must be one that says, “Satan you cannot have my mouth!  I’ll never say what you want me to say!”  If you’ll make that your battle cry in the dark place, you will be delivered, you will triumph, and you will overcome!

In regards to our lives, the Bible paints a picture of a court of law with Jesus as our lawyer (advocate), Satan as our accuser, and God as the judge (1 John 2:1, Revelation 12:10).  In any court of law, the testimony (the words) of the accused are the most powerful ones.  Your lawyer can say you’re innocent, the judge can say you’re innocent, but if you confess guilt, what they say no long matters. Matthew 12:37 says, “For by thy words thou shalt be justified and by thy words thou shalt be condemned.”  In other words, your acquittal or condemnation is in your mouth.  If you don’t say the wrong thing, Satan has no case against you.  Let’s say for example that you are battling financial lack.  Satan, as your prosecutor has to get you to confess financial lack in your life from the witness stand.  Jesus, like any good lawyer, has already told you what to say and what not to say when you are on the witness stand.  In this situation He would say to you, “Never say that you are in lack financially in anyway.  I don’t care what Satan says to you or what evidence he presents.  Never confess financial lack.  Only say “My God has met all of my financial needs according to his riches in glory and I am rich” (Philippians 4:19, 2 Corinthians 8:9).”  So, no matter how much Satan increases the pressure, no matter how bad the circumstances get, tears may be running down your eyes, but only say, “My God has met all of my financial needs according to His riches in glory and I am rich.”  If Satan can’t get you to say the wrong thing he cannot defeat you.

There’s only one way to insure that you will speak the Word of God under pressure and that’s to make sure that your heart is full of the Word of God.  Matthew 12:34 says, “Out of the abundance of the heart the mouth speaks.”  If you’ll fill your heart with the Word of God when you’re not under pressure, your heart will fill your mouth with the Word of God when you are under pressure.  If you want to speak the Word of God in pressured times, you need to make sure that you are filling your heart with the Word of God on a daily basis.  You cannot expect to withdraw something that was never deposited.  If you’re not filling your heart with the Word of God, you can’t expect it to come out of your mouth.  What you do not put in will not come out. By choosing to deposit God’s words in your heart and refusing Satan’s words, you ensure that when pressure shows up words of faith will come out of your mouth, and that guarantees your victory!  A big part of being delivered from the dark place is to spend time feeding your heart the Word of God on a daily basis.  Many people remain in the dark place and never come out of their trying times because they refuse to engage the daily preparation and training in the Word of God.  Rather than spending time feeding their faith with the Word of God, many just sit passively “hoping and praying” that God will do something.  That type of spiritual complacency will keep you in the pit.  Psalm 107:20 says, “He sent his word, and healed them, and delivered them from their destructions.”  You are not going to get delivered without hearing, believing, speaking and doing the Word of God.  In Joshua 1:8 God told Joshua, “This book of the law shall not depart out of thy mouth; but thou shalt meditate therein day and night, that thou mayest observe to do according to all that is written therein: for then thou shalt make thy way prosperous, and then thou shalt have good success.”  You’ll notice in that verse the prosperity and success came after the hearing, speaking, meditating, and doing God’s Word.  We need to be spending time in the Word of God everyday whether we are facing trying times or not.  For people in a dark place, spending time in the Word of God daily and filling their hearts with the Word is integral to their deliverance.  A heart full of the Word will result in a mouth full of the Word, and a mouth full of the Word will result in victory!