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My dog struggles with a condition called collapsing trachea. It causes him to gasp for air like he’s choked on a bone or a chunk of food. In bad episodes, he will continue to choke for up to ten minutes. And a few nights ago, he started gasping. So I picked him up and prayed over him, pleading with God to heal him. Well, he kept choking.

I got frustrated, no lie. This may be a dog, but he’s my little friend. I’m very attached to him. I’m laying there, petting my dog, trying to comfort him while he chokes like he’s about to die. And I’m terrified that maybe not this time, but next time he’s going to choke, and choke, and not stop. What if he really does die from this condition? Collapsing trachea has killed dogs. I don’t want to lose mine.

And so I’m praying, and praying, and petting, and kissing, and he’s still choking. Poor thing’s miserable. I’m like, “God! Help, please!” And I start crying. My dog’s going to die and the Healer is ignoring me. Then I start getting mad. “God! You said ask and it will be given. You say nothing is impossible. You say pray. Well, God, I pray for healing, not just for my dog, but others too, and I might as well be talking to a brick wall. You ignore me! In the Bible you healed. For others, you’ve healed. But me? Why not for me?” (I’m half-hysterical, people.)

And my dog is still gasping for every breath. I’m still crying. Lord’s still ignoring.

Or is He?

In the midst of my tears, I hear Him say, “What are you so afraid of?”

And in my mind, I see my dog dying from this thing, leaving me alone and tumbling back into the despair of loneliness and depression from which God has used this dog to help pull me out of.

And God says, “Your dog is not going to die tonight.”

I’m so relieved I remember the need to breathe. Then I remember I’m supposed to be mad at my Abba Father. “You didn’t heal him,” I accuse. “You never heal people when I pray. How am I supposed to operate this gift if You don’t do Your part!”

God; “Fear hinders faith, daughter.”

My frustration sputters to an end like a car that’s run out of gas. All of the sudden I understand. Healing is activated by faith. If there is not faith, there is no healing. If I’m terrified my dog’s going to die, well, I’m not really operating in faith. I’m operating in fear. And therefore, I hinder God’s ability to heal through my faith.

And I’m immediately discouraged. “You might as well count me out of this healing business then, God. I’d hate to be the bearer of bad news, but I don’t think I will ever fully conquer this fear thing.”

This is why I love God so much; He says, “With man, this is impossible. But with Me, all things are possible. Place your faith in Me and I will win your battle.”

My dog is still alive, in case you were wondering J

But I did learn a heavy lesson that night. I can’t expect healing if I’m terrified that it won’t happen. So if I am ever to operate in this area that God is calling me to, then I must overcome the spirit of fear that stalks me, waiting for an opportunity to cripple my faith. However, this cannot be done through my own strength. It must be done through God. He can make this happen in my life. He can transform me to where I am no longer hindered in this way. That is fully within God’s power and might. That I can believe without fear or worry.

And that is how I know that there will come a day when prayers of faith will be raised, and healing shall descend.

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A short time ago, my coworker was going through myspace and he pulled up a picture of my old ship captain and showed it to me. Now, not that I am one to purposefully hold a grievance. No. I’m a pretty easy forgiver. But there are certain incidents that are hard even for me to recover from enough to forgive.

This captain caused me a great deal of grief and hurt. Not that I believe he consciously desired to hurt me. But human nature being what it is, well, he did. His actions, along with a few others, drove me to a mental state of such despair that I feared I would never recover. I almost killed myself over this incident. And I would not wish that kind of pain on my worst enemy.

So when my coworker innocently showed me a picture of a man I haven’t even seen for over seven months…I had to look away. I couldn’t look at him. I could feel dark emotions beginning to churn within me and in order to keep them from suddenly arising and drowning me in anger, I turned away.

I thought I had forgiven him. And perhaps consciously I had. But my reaction to that picture told me that there was still a very bitter grudge beneath the surface of my emotions. And I didn’t know how to make it go away.

Listen, brothers and sisters. It’s real cute when we say offences come but it’s our choice to receive them. But it’s not reality. Many offences will punch you beneath the belt whether you gave them permission to or not. And guess what? It’s going to hurt whether you pretend it does or not. So what am I saying? We are going to battle with forgiveness whether we admit we do or pretend we don‘t.

I would love to meet the soul who can walk through this life and never hold a single grudge. Oh wait, that was Jesus. Haha. I am going to meet Him one day. J

The wonderful thing about this is that at our weakest, God is strongest. You see, it is one thing for us to not walk in forgiveness and have no desire whatsoever to do so, and a total different thing for us desire to forgive but really struggle with the execution. In the first situation, God is able to help us. But it’s in the latter that He is fully glorified.

As long as we desire to forgive, our Heavenly Father will take us through a heart process. This is where He rolls up His sleeves, gets down and dirty with our dirt and our hurt, and begins to spread healing through our souls. And as He heals, He coaxes us ever closer toward our goal of forgiving the instigator of our pain. Even if that instigator is ourselves.

So be encouraged. If you are in a hot spot like me where you want to forgive but are finding it just a tad bit out of your reach, just keep walking with God. He will guide our footsteps until we are finally at that place of grudge-free peace. And He will love us through every step of the way.

My apostle recently taught about reaping what you have sowed. And he meant it in a very positive way. It is a Kingdom Principle that those who sow, will reap. So if you have good seed that you have planted in good soil, expect a bountiful harvest. This is to encourage those who have been sowing…and waiting…and waiting. And nada. Still waiting. You see, if you sow good seed in good ground, you MUST reap a good harvest. Maybe not as soon as we may expect, but you will reap.

What is on my heart today, however, is a different aspect for this principle. I went up for prayer this last sunday at my friend’s church because the pastor sent out a call for those who struggled with battles of the mind. Well, that call had my name written all over it and when I went up well…the man read all my mail. God showed him a lot of stuff that was going on in my life and I just started crying. And he told me that was ok, that I needed to cry at God’s feet. That what I battled with was not from me, it was from another source. A negative source.

And God revealed to me that part of what I battled with was reaping. I was reaping what others have sown into my life. I said, how is that possible? The Lord showed me that we sow into the lives of the unsaved all the time. We speak to them the salvation and love of the Lord – seeds. But God said that there were negative seeds you can sow into the lives of people – horrible things spoken around and against you. Curses that people don’t realize are curses, but they have spoken nonetheless, and spoken over the lives of people they came in contact with.

I grew up around a lot of negativity, received a lot of harassment at school, had many things spoken against me. I was exposed to many experiences that perverted my view of life. And all of these were seeds planted in my soul – and when they began to sprout, they began to spread poison; a mental poison that had wrapped its destruction around and through my mind, and resulted in great torment.

The beauty of the Lord is that such things are not beyond His power to heal. Deliverance is in the Hand of the Lord. It spreads its healing touch through the core of our very being and where there was death, there now must be life.

Praise the Lord of Hosts.

Amen. Let it be so.

21 Death and life are in the power of the tongue,
And those who love it will eat its fruit.
(Proverbs 18:21, New King James Version)

“But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, longsuffering, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, self-control. Against such there is no law.”   – Galatians 5:22-23

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Food 4 Thought

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Did you notice that fruit is not plural? It’s singular. And if you look it up in the original words, it’s still singular. The Fruit (singular) of the Spirit is love. Therefore, the rest – joy, peace, kindness, etc- all stem out of love.

It’s like the Holy Spirit is the seed, love is the stem, and the rest are the pedals and leaves of the flower.

Therefore, if we struggle in patience or self-control or one of the others, the key to overcoming it would be to operate in a spirit of…yup, you guessed it…love.

 

 

Have a weekend filled with blessings 🙂

The Making of a Champion

When we walk in the victimized mindset, we become a hostage to our circumstances.

What are some characteristics of a victim:

·    Has experienced one or multiple destructive/injurious circumstances
·    Does not accept responsibility for self-ignited negative experiences
·    One who refuses to stand back up and re-plan after a hard fall
·    Pessimistic viewpoint
·    Expects negative happenings to befall them
·    Think everyone is trying to sabotage them
·    Insecure in multiple areas
·    A forsaken past=a forsaken future
·    Don’t dream for fear of nightmares (literally and symbolically)
·    Moves with extreme caution

Beloved, we must choose to shed the victim mentality. God sent His Son to die a victim so we don’t have to live a victim. Why then, do we hold to the victim’s mindset like it is a cherished friend instead of a self-destructive belief system that cripples our minds and poisons our lives?

Brothers and sisters, we don’t have to live in this mental hell.

Hear God’s declaration:
“I’ll pull you from a worse place and set you in a better place, all so I can bring you to greatness. The nightmare is over, my child. You’re not created to lose but created to win. You’re in the middle of good, expecting something bad, but I say not so! For you are destined for greatness—great blessings, great fruitfulness, and great overflow. Just reach out, touch the hem of My garment, and My blood will cleanse the past’s poison from your soul.”

Beloved, the Almighty has called us to victory, not victim disability. A victim waits for life to turn in their favor, but a victor shifts life to their benefit. And the way a child of God brings life to their favor is by moving only with the hand of God. When the Spirit stands, we are to stand. When the Spirit moves, we move. When It prays, we pray. When It worships, we worship. If we submit our will to the movement of God, He will move us into the right position, at the right time, to give us the right victory for every situation.

 

 

(Inspired by Apostle Jones sermon, From Victimized to Victory)

When will this earth learn to heal?
When will the crying and anger,
Accept healing and soothing?
When will the darkness give way to the light?

We look around and see pain.
We look around and see anger.
We look around and see fighting.
We look around and see destruction.

We miss the sunlight,
Dancing off the golden rays,
Come to fight the shadows,
Of this life.

We miss the peace,
Knocking at the door,
Telling us, baby,
It’s going to be alright.

We miss the flowers,
Churning, growing, sprouting,
Bringing color after a rainy day,
Bringing life to an empty soul.

We miss the love,
A gentle breeze,
Blowing through our lives,
Touching and healing our needs.

Come on, my brothers and sisters!

Come on, and choose the sunlight,
Come on, and feel the peace,
Come on, and touch the flowers,
Come on, and bathe in true love.

God is reaching and calling,
He is yearning to relieve,
This weighing on our hearts,
This burning fire consuming our souls.

This pain is blinding,
These burdens are heavy,
This sorrow everlasting,
This toil unchanging.

God has strength for our burdens.
God has the salve for our pain.
God has the peace for our sorrow.
God has the love to cover everything.

If we can look beyond our trials and sorrow,
If we can look beyond the torment of our past,
If we can look beyond the darkness of this world,
We will find peace, love and joy in God’s hands.

Dear Abba,

Encourage your people, so that we may continue to lift up your praise. The children hunger, the women weep, the men ignore the responsibility at their feet. God, help us. Have mercy on us. Your name is being dragged through the mud, my God, by people who do not understand your Word. Teach us, Lord, that we may know your truth. Resurrect us, Lord, from our miry graves, that we may give you a true praise; true adoration and true faithfulness.

God, I cry out to you for every person out there who is struggling with physical infirmities. I thank you, Lord, that by your stripes we are healed. I praise you, oh God, that there is no sickness, no disease in your kingdom, of which we are called to be the citizens. Come forth with healing in your wings, and restore our health to us. Give the doctors wisdom to spread your healing. Send your Spirit like fire through our nation and cleanse our infirmities.

Haleluiah, I praise you, Father.

In Jesus name I pray,
Amen

(Please feel free to post your own prayer or prayer request)

“WHEN Jesus saw him lie, and knew that he had been now a long time [in that case], he saith unto him, Wilt thou be made whole?

The impotent man answered him, Sir, I have no man, when the water is troubled, to put me into the pool: but while I am coming, another steppeth down before me.

Jesus saith unto him, Rise, take up thy bed, and walk.” John 5:6-8 KJV

TELL ME, oh beloved, do you want to be made well? Do the migraines torment you? Does disease ravage your bones? Does your stomach roll and expel, no matter what you eat?

TELL ME, sweet child, what does you doctor say? What meds does he prescribe to rid you this infirmity? How has that been? Are you healed? Is your body clean of the sickness beneath its sinews?

TELL ME, joy of My soul, do you want to be made well?

Why then, do you rely only on man to bring you to the Pool of Bethesda? Do you not know by Who’s power the pool gives healing? The practice of medicine is good. The work of doctors is all well. But the wisdom of man can only comprehend a small fraction of My creation.

THEREFORE, come boldly to My throne, dear child; I wait to heal your infirmity.