Image by alforque via FlickrWelcome friends! I am glad you found my blog and I pray that my writings will guide you to finding peace in the presence of God and thankfulness in your trials so that you can live an abundantly free life in Christ.
I will be giving away another copy of Jesus Calling for the month of January! So, leave a comment on my blog and you will have the chance to win this devotional book that changed my life.
Now on to my topic:
I had an Ahaah! moment this week. I've been thinking and praying about you, the reader, as to how I can help you the most. My highest hit page is Something's Gotta Change. That's when it hit me... you are looking for change, healing and deliverance. Duh!
Does the pain go way down deep? Do you feel like you are walking on eggshells in your own home? Do you fee like you are free-falling into a pit with no bottom? Do you feel like your prayers are hitting the ceiling and falling to the floor? Are you frequently sick, exhausted and about to lose your mind due to all the strife and anger in your home? Are you stressed out, about to call it quits, drowning in debt and at the end of your rope? Oh, my friend, you are not alone! Hang on just a little while longer, it is not a hopeless cause!
Are you longing for healing, deliverance, restoration, peace and joy? Yes! I can help you with that, because I have been there. That was me that I just described in the paragraph above. Now, don't get me wrong, no one ever arrives - I am still a work in progress, but I have seen miracles, restoration and progress by leaps and bounds in my own family.
That being said, there are some very KEY steps that I learned along the way and I hope to lay them out for you over the next several months. It is my goal to post one key step each week, so bear with me if the change can't come fast enough. While you are waiting, write this verse (Psalm 27:14) on a 3x5 card and tape it to your bathroom mirror. Read it frequently when things seem hopeless. Also, check out my bookstore to see many other fantastic references that will get the ball rolling at bit faster. You will need to be a diligent student if you are on a search for deliverance.
By the way, do you have a Bible? You will absolutely need one for this journey. If not, there are several good online references, or at the kindle store for your ipod, Droid, or Kindle. Get the Kindle app here. If you prefer a hard copy, I recommend the NIV version.
Change requires a commitment. Are you willing to do what it takes? Fortunately, there is something unique about the type of change I will be laying out for you. It doesn't simply depend on your own strength, determination or will-power. You see, when we bring God into the picture and walk with him through the difficulties of life, He says He will give us weapons with divine power to demolish strongholds (2 Corinthians 10:4). A stronghold (in the spiritual sense) is simply a thing, idea, mindset or addiction that keeps us in bondage to something false. I will talk more about spiritual strongholds in the weeks to follow. But for now, just know God will give you the strength that you don't have to overcome any obstacle. Isn't that great news!
Before I lay out step #1, there is one other important element that should be established and that element is HOPE. If your situation seems hopeless, I guarantee it is not, so I'm going to dare you to hope again. Remember, we're dealing with God's divine power now, not just human power. "With man this is impossible, but with God all things are possible.” Matthew 19:26 If you missed it, please go back and read my post You Gotta Have Hope.
Okay, are you ready for step #1? It's a simple one, but it's not easy! Anoint me with oil.
The date was October 2009. I sat in church while my pastor preached on James 5:13-16 which says:
Is any one of you in trouble? He should pray.There it was as plain as the nose on my face. My husband, my marriage, my children and my finances were sick. My heart was pounding as I felt God speaking directly to me. It was time - time to call the elders of the church to pray over us and anoint us with oil in the name of the Lord.
Is anyone happy? Let him sing songs of praise.
Is any one of you sick? he should call the elders of the church to pray over him and anoint him with oil in the name of the Lord.
And the prayer offered in faith will make the sick person well;
The Lord will raise him up. If he has sinned, he will be forgiven.
Therefore, confess your sins to each other and pray for each other so that you may be healed.
The prayer of a righteous man is powerful and effective.
Yikes! I told you it wasn't going to be easy, but this is the first step. For me and my family, this was the beginning step. To tell you the truth, I didn't even believe it would work and yet I had hope. If you read this scripture closely, you will see that it says, "the prayer offered in faith will make the sick person well." If it had to depend upon my faith, it surely would have failed. Good thing for me, it didn't depend on my faith, but rather the faith of the people offering the prayer, specifically, the elders.
It was terribly intimidating to make that call to the church and ask for this ceremony to be done. At first, I met with a road-block and this even after the pastor had just preached on this passage. I was so discouraged. I was told that I couldn't call a special meeting of the elders to pray over us. But I persevered until I found out that the elders were available every Sunday after each service to pray for anyone. And so that is what we did.
There were no fireworks, no lightening bolts from heaven, no ranting and raving for healing, just a beautiful anointing and a powerful and effective prayer from the lips of a righteous (but not perfect) group of men and women. Keep in mind, the key purpose of this anointing is to invoke the divine power of God to bring about healing and deliverance from the pain in our lives.
Did I see a miracle? No, but looking back, I know it happened, I just couldn't see it with my naked eye. Sometimes healing is immediate, but more often it is a process. Sarah Young, in her book Jesus Calling writes about miracles this way (it is written in first person with Jesus speaking to you, the believer).
"Do not fear your weakness, for it is the stage on which My Power and Glory perform most brilliantly. As you persevere along the path I have prepared for you , depending on My strength to sustain you, expect to see miracles - and you will. Miracles are not always visible to the naked eye, but those who live by faith can see them clearly. Living by faith rather than sight, enables you to see My Glory."There it is. Step #1 in the healing process. I'm sure you're saying "no way am I going to do that", but I challenge you to step out of your comfort-zone and take a step of faith. Live by faith and not by sight. Isn't your life worth it?
A prayer for you to pray this week:
"Lord, I pray that You would give me an added measure of faith today. Enlarge my ability to believe in You, Your Word and Your promises. Where I have formerly felt hopeless, enable me to hope again. Empower me with your divine weapons to fight off the fiery darts of the evil one who roams around as a roaring lion, seeking to devour me. I pray that out of your glorious riches you would strengthen me with power in my inner being to step out of my comfort zone and pursue you as my healer. I will be strong and take heart as I wait upon You."Grace and peace be yours in abundance today~