Stories of a good God

Archive for the ‘Hope’ Category

Open the door and enter in – God is Good!

I am the door. If anyone enters by Me, he will be saved, and will go in and out and find pasture. John 10:9

I’ve had a couple of dreams of late.

Who hasn’t?

One recent one, which brings comfort, especially as I repeatedly take it to God to seek clarification of it’s meaning, as He exposes layers upon layers, even through daily ‘happenings’ within our home through this time of so called ‘lock down’ was as follows:

I found myself in a shopping area in Ringwood, which is the suburb where I grew up in Melbourne, Australia. I was in the carpark of Target Square. As I walked I felt uneasy, and as I looked around I started to note that there were terrorists all around me, huddled in groups, with guns.

Naturally I was frightened, and I hoped they would not see me. As I walked I saw that they indeed did not see me, but they were huddled ready for action. The fear was palpable. I tried not to draw attention to myself, hoping they would not open fire.

[yes lots for me to unpack people …]

The dream then shifted. I don’t recall much of the mid-part, but all I sense about it was that I had been hiding, running, avoiding detection, perhaps with others too.

The final scene, I was in a labyrinth like area, with a group of others. The walls were high, and I was trapped, with pretty much nowhere to go. We could keep running, but it would continue to be more of the same, we would be trapped avoiding detection, hiding from the terror, trying to survive, but it was just more of the same.

The group that had been running with me were to my right. To my left, towering before me as I stood, was a huge, ancient looking heavy set wooden door, with dark metal work, hinges etc, much like you would find on a castle. It was HUGE. The door was of significant (read very large) proportions.

I stood with the door before me – to my left. It hinged on the left. The people with me begged me not to open the door. They were full of fear of what was beyond the door. They said it could have the terrorists on the other side. I was hesitant, I could feel the anxiety. I too feared what could be behind the door, but I said to them ‘what other choice do we have but to open the door and go through, there is nowhere else for us to go, I must open the door, it may be a way out, I could not longer run and hide, I had to take the risk and open the door.’

And so I did … I opened the door.

As I did, I saw beyond. It is difficult to explain what I saw. I stood on the thresh hold.

To try to explain what I saw would be like trying to explain colour to a blind man. The best I can do is to refer to how, in The Wizard of Oz movie, it shifts from black and white to multicoloured – but that just does not do it justice.  It was so technicoloured, and what was beyond vibrated with energy, with life. How technicolour it was, how vibrant it really was …

Beyond that door was a technicoloured vibrant scene, it vibrated, it shimmered, it shimmered, it shimmered. There were greens, golds, yellows, and hints of red … it was as if seeing it out of the corner of my eye … there was life beyond the ancient of doors … there was safety.

It was a garden, but the shimmering meant I could not quite see it all with clarity … I had to step in 🙂

I smiled and looked at those with me , the group full of fear. I let them know we were safe, and I woke as I stepped through the door.

We are in days of wonder, yet the spirit of fear is yapping at our heels. I understand we are in a global pandemic … but God!

There is sadness, there is sickness, there is fear, there is loss of jobs, there is crisis … but God!

Terrorists trade on fear, and on uncertainty. They trade in the idea that you have no idea where they may strike, who they may hit next – the fear becomes palpable.

Through my legal work with refugees, hearing their stories, I have studied the impact of terrorism. I have met people in my work who have survived church massacres. I have sat through videos of unspeakable atrocity. The fear is palpable, and insipid and dark and dangerous – it is the thing in the atmosphere world wide now …

So I call upon the spirit of Hope, Faith, Kindness, Healing, family, Unity, Love …

I call forth the prophets, the seers, the creatives to find the Ancient of Days, to step through the Door that is there … and to encourage the others that hold back in fear that it is ok, it is safe to step through The Door …

Open The Door to freedom those that have gone before …

Open The Door to Safety … those that have been there before …

Step through and meet the Ancient of Days …. those that seek …

Step through to freedom, where you need to run and hide no more …

Step through and taste and see that …

God is Good!

Behold, I stand at the door and knock. If anyone hears my voice and opens the door, I will come in to him and eat with him, and he with me.

Rev 3:20

See, I am doing a new thing!
    Now it springs up; do you not perceive it?
I am making a way in the wilderness
    and streams in the wasteland.   

Isaiah 43:19

And he would love again because God is Good!

I wrote this testimony up a few years ago, but I never published it.  I feel it’s time to publish it now, so that it may serve as encouragement to those who are journeying something similar, to those that need to know that they are worthy of love, and of loving again, and for those too that need to know that their prayers matter because God is Good!

There is a local fruit and vegetable shop in my suburb. The staff are friendly, they stop and say “hi”.  It’s my local community, part of “my turf”.  There have been a number of prayer assignments there over the years, and the most recent one was just last Friday …

A couple of years ago, the manager of this store helped me out and was exceptionally kind.  He is that sort of bloke … a beautiful example of an ordinary person being kind to another human being!   A little while later he saw me in the store and asked how I was doing.  I said great compared to where I had been, thanks to people like him around me.  I then got on to ask him how he was doing …

He looked and opened up his heart to me.  He had just journeyed through a divorce he said.  She had been his best friend.  There were no children from the relationship, which he felt was a blessing.  He still hurt.  He looked ready to cry.

I wasn’t too sure what to say at the time, but he said passionately that he never wanted to go through loving another person again.  He said he would never marry again – it hurt too much when it fell apart. Everything about me went on alert … he was cursing himself out of the place of his extreme pain.   looked at him and said quietly:

“now that would be a shame.  Your’e a good man, and it would be sad to deprive someone of you … you would make a wonderful husband and a wonderful father … your a kind person and generous hearted, and it would be such a shame for you to not be willing to risk again …”

The tears nearly brimmed over as the words hit his open heart. He thanked me and I smiled at him, wanting to fix his pain, but knowing I couldn’t do that …

I had wanted to pray for him then and there, but felt unsure and so as I left I started to pray for him privately. Calling healing, love and blessing into his life.

It was sometime later, a few months maybe, or longer, I saw him and there was a gleam to his eye and a quickness to his step … I said “hello” and commented on how he was looking. He looked at me and told me that he had met someone special … I smiled and asked for some more details. I let him know that I had prayed for him after I left the day he had told me of his divorce and he excitedly said that the prayers had been answered.  I laughed and said that I was delighted for him, that he was too special to hide himself under a rock forever … he grinned and thanked me again saying that he had taken on my words of encouragement sometime ago …

I offered to pray for him at this point and he agreed, telling me some of what he felt he wanted prayer for …

Well this first relationship did not pan out, and he has seen a few more people … but he is not crushed each time. He  is still hopeful that one day he will meet a person with whom he can share his life…

I see him regularly and catch up with how he is each time … he is a part of my community, and a blessing to those that he works for, and that work under his supervision. Sometimes I will pray for him, other times it is purely pleasantries.

The last time I saw him was a few Fridays ago.  I was sitting outside a coffee shop having a cuppa with my husband in the sunshine. There was the usual banter, and a bit of Aussie teasing, and I asked him what he was up to while the store was closed (where he worked was being renovated). He told me he was heading off to Dubai for a holiday so I called him over and prayed for him again, asked God to bless him and to make his paths straight, and that He would be granted wisdom.

He grinned and looked at us both and said he planned to have a brilliant time …

I watched him walk away and thought of the kindness he had shown me. I thought of the broken man he had been when he had poured his heart out in the store a little later, and how he had healed and grown strong again, knowing that he was worth being loved and that he was worth loving again …

Did my prayers make a difference? I don’t know for sure, I’d like to believe so. What I do know is that he poured his heart out to me in the middle of the store, and that in that moment I could speak life into the place of pain in his heart. These words hit home, and he said they had meant a great deal. I had a strong burden on my heart for him as I left, and I prayed and lifted him up to my God.  Would he have healed anyway … maybe … but what I know and believe is that to walk as Jesus walked, when we feel compassion for people, we are to stop and pray (whether we do that face to face or privately that’s between you and God) but regardless I do not believe that God gives us a heart for people to just feel sad … but to do something about it.  I believe these prayers matter, and I believe that these prayers make a difference. I believe that we are called to the lost, hurting and wounded, and I believe that God sends them to us to speak life into them because …

God is Good!

 

 

 

Today was a good day – God is Good!

Today was a good day!

We had a beautiful day of sunshine.

I cleaned, did some work, encouraged some people, took a call to help a friend (a pre Christian and we talked about Christian stuff amongst the other stuff), did some loads of washing, did some pro bono work, watered my garden (I am a garden person and these last few days I have got back into the garden after 6 years of never managing to due to ballet runs), had a coffee with my husband, encouraged my children … and …

did I mention it was a beautiful warm day of sunshine here in Melbourne Australia?

In a nut shell, the good is, aside from the above:

My husband has settled into working at home. My 16 year old daughter and my 12 (nearly 13) year old son have settled into online schooling with their respective schools. I work from home anyway … so the difference for me is a full house, and no running around doing ballet runs for children :-). School term finished today, and my son has his birthday this weekend – we will bake a cake, skype family and sing happy birthday and find the joy in it all.

There is a peace, it does feel like the peace in the midst of the storm, but there is peace.

Indeed, Lana Vawser (and others) have released words that it is a time of ‘Selah’, a time to pause, reflect AND a time to lift up Jesus above all, for as we do He will lift up all mankind to Himself, and that’s where we need to be (lifted up to Jesus) (see John 12:32). Check out the Psalms where this term is used, and try stopping, pausing for a moment and think, contemplate the Word you just read …

Better still read (and declare) Psalm 91 and contemplate our beautiful God.

And so I will continue to rest upon a life scripture of mine, Phil 4:4-8, which exhorts us to:

Rejoice in the Lord always. I will say it again: Rejoice! Let your gentleness be evident to all. The Lord is near. Do not be anxious about anything, but in every situation, by prayer and petition, with thanksgiving, present your requests to God. And the peace of God, which transcends all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus.

Finally, brothers and sisters, whatever is true, whatever is noble, whatever is right, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is admirable—if anything is excellent or praiseworthy—think about such things.

So I will pray.

I will petition.

And, with thanksgiving I present my requests to God … and those requests are fierce and in line with Doug Addison’s prayer  to break the covid19 virus and …

I have peace, thank God I have Peace!

And I pray you do too …

Regardless I will focus and think on all things that are:

  • true
  • noble
  • right
  • pure
  • lovely
  • admirable
  • excellent
  • praiseworthy

even if my mind wants to go else where, I will train it back, purely and simply because …

God is Good!

Interestingly, I felt God ask me to post daily (which if you are a fellow blogger you know that is quite a lot of work, especially if you are rather verbose like I can tend to be ;-). So, if these posts are a little rough and ready – apologies!

It was therefore ironic when a fellow blogger (chrissblog11) today asked me to join other Christian bloggers and post an encouraging verse every day! Chrissblog11 wants to ‘start a hope movement to stop fear in these times.’ Well this is what I am doing too – releasing over the air waves that GOD IS GOOD! Declare it to the world, the world wide web … the WWW. that GOD IS ALWAYS GOOD!

Prayer releases Heaven’s bulls eye – God is Good!

The purpose of these posts is to declare and remember that God is Good!

This is something that I have resolved in my heart – that no matter what … God is Good!

In the storm – He is there.

In the calm – He is there.

And – He is Good!

God is ALWAYS GOOD!

Graham Cooke teaches this so well. In the midst of challenges and hardship, Graham teaches us that we should stop and ask (my summation of Graham’s teaching – Graham is so much more eloquent):

‘God what are You doing right now, I know your’e up to something, and it’s always good, it’s always for my benefit. God, who do You want to be for me right now? How do you see that person right now? How can I agree with you God for that person in prayer?’

Every challenge is an opportunity to grow, and every tough awful event is an opportunity to learn more about God, His character, and who He wants to be for us. And, the best part is, once we get it we can pass it on – it’s our inheritance to share with others!

In the midst of storms, our own storms or other’s storms, or in this case, we are all in the storm, we have an opportunity to ask:

‘God what are you up to? How do you see me? How do you see X? …’

It will always be kind, because He is a kind Father It will always be redemptive, because that is Who He is!

And so, I encourage you to seek Him first, see how He sees others, or situations, and pray it, declare it, release it … always blessing, always favour, always good, always redemptive – for Jesus did not come to condemn the world … He came to save it! John 3:17

So I will continue to post at this time, and declare the Truth that God is a Good God and He is in a Good Mood!

I will continue to post because it is by the blood of the lamb and by the power of my testimony, your testimony, our testimonies, that the attack of the enemy is defeated (Rev 12:11) …

So, release your testimony and call on the blood of the lamb, and pray as God leads you, knowing that as you pray you are painting a target in the spirit realm on that person, over that situation, in that land, one that we may not see in the natural, but it is there, and God knows it’s there and He will  hit the mark (and I want to hear about it when He does) because …

God IS Good!

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Stop and Shop – release Hope … God is Good!

My last two posts have been about obedience to God in a place of rest rather than striving.

This story occurred last week as I went about my day.  Toilet paper, meat, vegetables, fruit, pasta, rice had flown off the shelves, and our supermarket shelves were bare.

I had just dropped my daughter to her ballet training when a ballet teacher Miss A ran up to the car to apologise for opening the studio late. I smiled and said not to worry. I was keen to get to the plant nursery (a job I had planned for over a week).  However, rather than being able to wave a cheery ‘goodbye’ and speed off I saw that she looked distressed.

I had to stop and slow down for the one.

Miss A started to pour her heart out about her fears.  She feared her loss of income, how she had not been able to buy anything at the supermarket (where she had been and run late that morning), how she was running low in toilet paper, and food, and she had so many to feed at home, including two growing teenagers training at an elite level in ballet.  She then said how worried she was for her 14-year-old daughter who had cried with fright, how her son’s training was being interrupted, and how all the overseas scholarship training and performing opportunities had dried up due to the virus.

I looked at her distressed face, stopped, remembering we were to bring ‘Hope” to the world. I recalled that I was born for such a time as this (even though I felt just as useless) and I spoke out the good, how blessed she was that she could continue to train her beautiful children, how I had been praying for the studio, for the staff, that it would be ok, that we would all be ok, that maybe we could do some distance training online … (gently, gently I dropped that last idea in since it was as yet unformed in my heart – it would not be until the following day that God confirmed this to be a suggestion).

I really didn’t have any answers for her and felt a bit useless; however, as I drove off, I prayed, and as I did I felt my morning gently being rearranged by an invisible but very present Fatherly hand.

I was to go back to my home suburb. This made no sense to me, but I listened and as I drove I felt to go to my local greengrocer/mini market.

“Ok God I will, what have I got to lose if I’m wrong, and then I’ll head to the nursery.”

Gardening is my thing and with enforced home time looming, and a birthday gift voucher burning a hole in my pocket, I wanted to get to my purchase before shops shut. I never did get to the nursery that day …

I walked into the local shop, and to my surprise there was loads of everything – there was an abundance of food … fresh chicken, potatoes, sweet potatoes, pasta, rice everything she said she needed but could find …

As I wandered and bought a few things for our home (chicken and sweet potatoes and potatoes) I felt a nudge to text the teacher.  I was a little reluctant – I just don’t like looking too keen if you know what I mean, but on the nudge I texted, and then rang, leaving a message.

She rang back quickly and I explained there was plenty of food – what did she want?

She said she would go later, to which I replied, “no, I will do the shopping for you to be sure you have what you need.”

In a nutshell, I got a shopping list from her and I loaded my trolley with her shopping needs chicken, wraps, corn, sweet potatoes, brown rice, potatoes, leek, vegetable stock … the list went on.

At the end of the call she breathlessly said: “I told LS (her daughter) that people’s kindness would shine through and we would be ok.”

I agreed, we would be ok … and I agreed that her daughter would see people’s kindness shine through this time, even though she had been so frightened by the bare shelves she had seen that morning.

Now, while I would like to take credit for this all, I must say, it was not me … I just did the shopping!

Had God not told me to go to this particular shop, I would not have done so.  Had I not gone, I would not have then felt the nudge to text/call her when I was surrounded by all the abundance. Had I not stopped to listen to her heart felt fears and needs, I would not have known she had those needs. To be honest, as I walked around the shop I felt absolutely moral bound to call her, now I knew her need, to let her know there was so much food.  I had to be sure she would be ok.

It was SO like My Father, to lead me to abundance in a seemingly barren place.

I was blessed, because I was able to purchase for my home, but as I did I could also do His shopping for the one that was on His heart. Both Miss A and I were blessed.

In a nut shell, I bundled the items up, and dropped them to the studio when I collected my daughter. Miss A’s teenagers would have enough protein to keep dancing and the family would have some fresh food for at least the next few days.

After this I knew to step back again. To have kept shopping for her like that would have made her feel embarrassed. I obey, and wait for the next nudge. It is in this way God releases (albeit through a pretty broken vessel by now) His goodness.

She knew I had been praying for them all.

Her needs were met for the day, and I continue to pray for her and all the studio staff in the days to come, purely and simply because …

God is so very Good!

Please – if you have a story of stopping and serving in this time of challenge, big or small, share it below, or message me so I can share it because it glorifies God to have His goodness shared, and in the testimony is the power to call upon His name to “do it again Lord.” If we all just stop for the one as we go, global wide, people will taste and see that God is Good!

 

Salt preserves – being community in the world … God is Good!

Yesterday I posted about the time I had to stop and breathe. During this time God came and nurtured me, and gave me a list of dot points to “do” (note: it is a high priority to “be” every day, before I “do”).

One of my dot points was literally: “JMAB – skype lessons.”

JMAB is an elite ballet school.  It provides excellent dance tuition to literally hundreds of children, who represent 100’s of families in our wider community.  The school has existed for YEARS!

With the prospect of community distancing, schools shutting, and our suburbs getting ready to go into shut down I became acutely aware of the needs of our ballet school, and how very vulnerable the staff would be feeling. Now, this was last week people, so Australia was still not really seeing the writing on the wall.  I have always prayed for every school community that we are a part of, and this school is no exception, and so, as this season of challenge accelerated over the last few weeks I have found myself praying more and more for JMAB staff.

Now, I have learnt to hold my tongue with God ideas, and to go gently gently, especially with pre Christians, although on this I stuff up all the time.  So, I sat on this idea and waited for God’s timing, for a natural opportunity to make the suggestion.

It came Sunday afternoon!

I received a text that the school would be shut down due to State Government guidelines.

I texted the staff member back saying:

Hi S

We have set up a studio in our lounge room. We would love privates by video by video – what are your thoughts? This way we can support the studio financially through this time and the kids can keep training xxx

Note: I wanted to keep the idea small to start with, but I saw it HUGE – much bigger than just the odd private lesson

I then texted more:

We are setting up our cameras etc too 🙂 Maybe J could put the level 2 music and other music online for the kids too.  There is so much we can do as a community to keep JMAB going xxx

As I texted, I read what I wrote to my husband and as I did waves of the Presence, or surges of God’s anointing came and covered me powerfully. It took me by surprise, but though laughter, and it’s intensity I thought “ok God must be on this”.

Then suddenly the phone rang.

It was S.

We then proceeded to have a discussion. I told S I had been praying for them all and that last week I had felt I had received this idea as I prayed for them.  I told her I wanted her to know they were not alone, and that they were important to us.  That JMAB and staff were important to the community.

S had a number of challenges with the idea.  She was already defeated and deflated. I gently came back with decent suggestions to counter the issues (the ideas just came people) and as I did she slowly warmed to the idea and even started saying how it could perhaps work, and she started problem solving for herself, and she started to sound more hopeful. I knew not to be too intense, to let the idea slowly simmer. After quite a lengthy call, I hung up hopeful, trusting and praying that she would communicate the ideas to J, the principal of the school.

I had to trust God!

Yesterday I drove my daughter to the school to empty her locker, and while there my daughter saw J, the principal teacher.

J said to my daughter that she hoped to see her soon … AND she said that she was hoping to do some classes online … !!!

When my daughter jumped back into the car and told me MY HEART SANG!!

We are called to be salt and light to the world (Matthew 5:13-16).

Salt preserves.

Salt brings cohesion to a recipe, it binds the flavours together.

Salt also highlights and intensifies flavours.

I’m hoping God’s salt will preserve JMAB and staff in this time of uncertainty for so many.  Just a sprinkle, and I trust He will do the rest – because He cares more for them than I do.

How do we be salt?

We release Him as we go, we release His ideas as we go, and we pray for people (in our prayer closets, and in the open). We seek His ideas for them, and if we have the opportunity we gently communicate those ideas (whether saying He gave them or not)

How do we not lose our saltiness?

We spend time with the One who created everything,  We read His word, we worship, we pray, we journal … we dream with God.

And as we do, in these uncertain times, more than ever people will see that …

God is Good!

 

Giving hope and releasing light in the CCU … God is Good!

Kindy Teacher’s Husband – giving hope releasing light in the Coronary Care Unit – Wednesday 13th October 2010

On Wednesday afternoon (the day I prayed for M’s kindy teacher’s husband) I received a phone call from M’s kindy teacher asking me to come to the hospital to pray for her husband “L”. There was an urgency and insistence in her call and she was quite firm about me coming when I could that night.

I headed off after getting the kids to bed and after sending out emails asking for prayer coverage for “L” and myself. My husband prayed for me before I left and his hand burned on my back, although he thought my back was hot … I was feeling somewhat challenged at the thought of going but focused on God, his goodness, chose to remain the His peace and drove to the hospital worshiping and praising God. I felt apprehension as I walked towards the CCU (Coronary Care Unit), but I sensed (“saw”) two massive angels walking in behind me and I chose to trust, knowing my job was to love and that it was God’s job to heal … I just had to turn up.

I went in and introduced myself. 

L was on his bed with oxygen and he was all connected up to tubes, cords and monitors.

As I entered he looked and said “please tell me I’m going to be alright” or something along those lines … I felt intense pressure, took a deep breath and answered that this sickness was not for him, that God wanted him well and that I believed He would be healed and would walk out of the hospital. My head was screaming at me about giving false hope, and I was very aware that only a few days before was the 13th anniversary of my Father’s death who had died of pneumonia as a complication of prostate cancer.

I explained briefly what I would do and asked what he had been diagnosed with – he had double pneumonia, which had gone to the heart, he had oedema (swelling) from the knees down. I looked at him and felt God say “start at the feet” so I did. I laid hands on his feet and commanded the fluid retention to leave etc and he felt (so he told me later) electricity going up his legs into his back. I then asked permission to lay my hands on his chest. I did and commanded the infection to leave and released healing etc he started to cough and phlegm starting coming up – he told me that it was the first time he had managed a “productive cough” (one that moved the mucus off his chest). I told him to do what he had to in order to get the phlegm out – it was not time for social niceties.

As I prayed I shared a few testimonies that I felt led to share. He told me he felt very at peace.

I then asked him to breathe deeply. He tried and he said it was the deepest he had been able to breathe for some time. I felt it was nearly time to go so I lay my hands on his feet again, and told him to him to close his eyes, rest and remain in the peace and I would pray and then quietly leave when I felt it was time to go. I prayed and released peace over him, praying for complete covering through the room and quietly left, leaving him resting peacefully without any cough.

The following morning I received this message from his wife on my answering machine at 9.22am:

Good morning … Thank you so much for seeing L, he is much better, he is breathing much freer so I just can’t thank you enough and L is very grateful, so thank you so much and I will talk to you later. Bye for now.”

All I can say is … God is Good.

Power of the prophetic word pushing through fear…God is Good!

There are times when we all doubt ourselves …

Did he really say that?  Was I on the money?  Oh, my gosh, I stuffed that one up!

All of us are on a journey of discovery … discovery of who we are, Whose we are, learning how to hear the Father’s voice …

The last story posted (the Sound of Healing) was a story of miraculous healing.  The healing occurred at a conference two years ago.  I had been invited to that conference to minister, as part of a team.  The first night had been challenging, for me.  I was stretched.  It was a worship rehearsal where we were called to minister to the worship team, give words of prophecy etc …

Now I had done this type of thing before … but each time I have to step out this way, particularly in a church, I get nervous … very nervous!

On this particular night I was tired, but I stepped into it, knowing God wanted the team touched more than I did, and I briskly told myself to get on with it!

I came to a man (who I later knew as G) who immediately seemed to me to be tired.  It was like he had lost hope.  I could tell he was a mature Christian, a seasoned Christian, and I knew he was a man of integrity and I felt he was battle weary.  I cannot remember the full extent of the word, but it was a word of a new season, that a new sound was coming.  That he had been a warrior and now the fight was over, that there was something new on the horizon …

Now, from my perspective he looked to me like he had “heard it all before” … and in response I felt like I had missed the mark … I tried to encourage him and said ‘you watch something new is coming … “ but as I did I felt a strong desire to retreat to run away … even to cry … I felt I had completely and utterly stuffed up, and that although it was an encouraging word, it had not been received well and was completely “off”…

I moved onto the next person to give the next word, trying to shake the feeling off, trying to gather my thoughts and step out again in trust that I would hear well … feeling a dismal failure, and a right goose!

The prophesying finished, and he walked up to stage to play.  I was relieved that the ministry time was over … and I felt the accusations come … the voice saying “you missed it … you can’t and don’t hear from God well … he knows you are no good at this … you might as well give up … who do you think you are anyway …”

I shrugged it off, and tried to press into God, knowing I had followed prophetic protocol and had kept the words that night encouraging.

Now, I tell this story because it was two years later that I “bumped into” this man and his wife (who was healed miraculously that weekend).  We were in the line for a ride at a theme park of all places!  We caught up for dinner that night and it was there that they told me that it was that word that I had given that night … that word that I had so doubted, that the man had held onto and taken home and it had been the catalyst for them to step out in faith and believe for his wife’s healing that weekend … I had no idea!

She wrote to me the following in an e-mail:

In regard to your prophetic word…. it was the Thursday night at the Creative Meeting when you all were praying and prophesying over the musicians that were going to be involved over the Wonders Conference weekend. You were praying over G and said to him that he had been a warrior, that he had gone through a great battle and that it was drawing to an end, that a new beginning was about to commence – the fight was over.  … you have no idea how excited G was when he came home that night after you prophesied those words over him.  I know that you wouldn’t have had a clue how significant your words were, or if they meant anything at all to G but ‘far out’ they were so spot on and you verbalised the very words of God Himself. The words God spoke through you were what began the faith growth in G, and then G speaking them to Pastor Mark, and then me – and the outcome of God healing me caused the biggest growth in faith in our church that continues to grow daily. It all began … with your prophetic word. (you may be blown away now and even cry a little because of how great God is, and all we have to do is make ourselves available and let God do the rest – let Him speak, let Him lead, let Him heal – all we have to do is be there).

She later wrote to me:

In response to your comments, you’re exactly right we all play our part, no one more important than the other. God orchestrates it all, brings us all together to play our part. There was your prophesy which got the ball rolling, advising G that it’s over – [that he’d] well and it’s time! G’s faith and obedience to talk to Mark and then to confess his faith in front of everyone on the Saturday afternoon session, then there was Pastor Mark’s faith, boldness and courage in obedience to take the whole church to the chicken line, then there was Fergus [the drummer on Saturday morning] who felt ‘oh my goodness! What am I doing!!’ There was Ally [worship leader, singer], who was obeying and worshiping and prophesying in song as God led her, then there was me and all I had to do was lay there, and my part wasn’t any more important than anyone else’s – we were all instruments in an incredible performance that God was putting on/performing!! Praise God!!! I get so excited talking/writing about it.  … you should definitely include your prophesy and how you felt and the actual impact of your word. … I really feel you need to write about it because there is so much for people to learn from your experience. You thought (felt condemned) that you had said something so far off base, but that couldn’t have been further from the truth. I think G’s look probably came from sheer shock of how incredibly accurate you were, and maybe too, it was perhaps a little naivety on his part – this prophesying etc was all very new to him. 

And so I have written about my part to encourage others to step out and let God.  I am humbled by all that A writes and I feel privileged to be a small part of an unfurling of a healing miracle that sparked a bush fire of faith in their Church … and so, the reason I write is to show that He can use anyone at any time, that how we feel about our so called “performance” is not relevant … it is our heart attitude of doing our best and being available to Him that matters … for we don’t know the plans that He has for ourselves or for others, but we do know, without a doubt, that whatever His plans are, they are plans to bless us, to give us a future and a hope (Jeremiah 29:11 NASB) and, I know this for sure: that if I can be used … then anyone can be used purely and simply because …

God IS Good!

And Peace flooded her soul … God is Good!

We had half an hour to take a hat back, buy a pan and get to a family function.  We determinedly walked through the shopping centre, having prayed and received the perfect park … God’s favour was with us 🙂 … it always is!

We entered the store to return the hat.  The girl behind the counter recognised me, as I did her, but she looked tired and said as much saying how she felt “down”, that the recent overcast mornings had impacted her soul and reflected her overcast state of being … she looked colourless, tired and drained …

We kept chatting as she processed my return.  She finished up and as she did I knew I needed to pray for her … for her to have joy, peace, and for a sense of hope to come …

As she handed me my credit card and docket and I contemplated the offer to pray, and in my hesitation the store filled up with customers, others came to the counter for service and the phone began to ring …

Missed it I thought … now I’ll have to wait … or go … blow!”

I looked around behind me as she talked on the phone and saw my son, daughter and husband still “cruising” the shelves … seemingly content …

She put the phone down to look for the required item, the customer waiting on the other end, I ignored the person to my right waiting for service, I ignored the phone call, and said:

“Give me your hand” … and reached out over the counter, my hand extended.

She did, and as she did I invited the Holy Spirit to come, I quickly said:

“I’m going to pray for you, I’m a Christian …”

and proceeded to command depression to leave and I released hope, joy, faith, and peace into and around her …

I finished quickly, knowing that we were all in a hurry … As I did I said “do you feel that?” feeling the anointing sweep all around me …

“I do, I do,” she said and teared up ever so slightly. 

I watched as her face lost the greyness and colour flooded her countenance … the look of stress left immediately, and peace, a quiet sense of joy, flooded her features.  I told her that her face had regained colour and told her to look in the mirror …

I leant over and kissed her hand, saying that God loved her very much and she instantly smacked a big pink kiss straight back onto my hand leaving a big kiss mark and she looked at me and kept saying …

I felt that … I definitely felt that …. That was amazing … I felt that …I feel so much better” and she smiled.

I responded saying that God had asked me to pray for her, because He loved her, and didn’t want her feeling the way she had been, that tomorrow she would wake and feel amazing …

She quickly finished the phone call, served the other people and essentially followed us around the store smiling and saying …

I feel so much better … I really felt that … that was amazing … thank you”

We left the store with plenty of time to find our “pan purchase”, satisfied that the hat had been returned, and that, yet another person, had experienced that, indeed … yes in deed …

God is Good!

Saturday morning rush … stopping for the one …

I sensed there would be a park to the left … but for some unfathomable reason I drove straight … I looked … there was a park there and I had missed it and the car in front of me took the one I had my eye on …

“Blow!”

I drove up well past where I needed to go for bread and the much-needed coffee.  I had a frantic morning of drop offs, collecting clothes, getting food for children, and pick ups from ballet before I headed back to the conference at church, a 30 plus minute drive away …

As I pulled into the park in front of the post office I wondered if there would be a God assignment … and I recalled the treasure hunt God encounter from a couple of years before … there was no-one there … I shrugged, figuring God knew I was way too busy to stop anyway …

I quickly headed up to the stores I needed to visit, got my “stuff” and walked briskly back … forgetting the thoughts of before, focused on getting my coffee home so I could relish a little bit of chocolate that was sitting on my kitchen bench before I started the whole crazy pace of life again …

As I approached the post office I noticed a man sitting in the sunshine, he looked homeless, so I started praying for him as I strode firmly towards my car … warm coffee in hand, relishing the thought of maybe 10 minutes on my own with a little piece of chocolate and coffee … but as I prayed for this stranger I knew that God wanted me to stop, go back to him and offer to pray … it was time to stop for the one …

I turned, walked up to him smiling and excused my interruption.  I explained I was a Christian and had felt that I should offer to pray, and told him that rather than walk past him and pray for him privately, I was to stop for him at that moment …

He looked and said “yes”, so I asked for his hand and as he looked up at me he gently said would I please sit by his side …

I did a quick mummy calculation … time to sit? … I had two children to collect, 10 minute drive there, clothes to collect from home, food to get ready, children had to be changed …

I sat.

I knew the children would be safe, the chocolate would be nearly as good without the coffee, and giving my time here was of eternal benefit, as compared with my own strong desire to steal 10 minutes on my own.

It was God’s heart.

He started to tell his story …

He was Polish, had fought in a war, seen people die, was lonely, was divorced, and had sat here friendless day after day watching people … happy people … walk past him and never stopping … no-one loved him he said …

I looked into his eyes and said,

“Well God does!  He asked me to stop for you.  I was praying for you as I walked past, but He said to stop for you because He loves you …”

And I prayed, in the sunshine, holding the hand of a dishevelled and broken stranger, drinking coffee as I sat on a bench outside our local post office …

I prayed and searched God for the words, for the insight … and all I could think of was to pray for Peace, for a sense of God’s love to flow into him, for Hope and for Joy … I prayed for friends and companionship, and that he would know and sense the Holy Spirit, that he would feel God and know he was never alone …

He told me more of his story …

He no longer saw friends, suffered with depression, he had been raised a Catholic, but he had given it the … flick … (and he gestured violently with his arms) … and in rebellion against his father he had joined the army and flung himself out of planes … he had been married and had a child who he never saw … he would sit on this bench and no-one would stop … “but you did” he said …

I felt God prompt me to give him my husband’s mobile number … I did … and we chatted briefly about the testimonies I had heard from David Wagner at the conference and how David had been suicidal but he couldn’t successfully kill himself … he said he had tried to kill himself too … I then told him some of Graham Cooke’s story (click here for testimony) and he relished the testimonies of two men one so damaged and broken as a young boy who had tried to kill himself so many times the other also broken as a young boy and running from the law … and how both had become full of a loving God, working miracles and signs and wonders and how they were fully whole … his eyes lit up at the possibilities …

I mentioned church, and gave the details but I knew that was too much of a step for him … I knew I had to invite him into my world … our world, instead … I didn’t want to I had befriended mentally ill people before, and I knew it could be an intense experience … and anyway … he was a man … not my job …

I then felt God prompt me to give him the CD pack I had in my bag for a friend.  It was a Bill Johnson CD pack called Enduring Faith.  The first CD had been recorded a week or two prior to Bill Johnson’s father dying and the second CD had been recorded the week after … it was a powerful and strong message of faith when it appears the victory is gone …

I argued with God. 

These CD’s were for my friend.  I had promised to lend them to her.  They had our surname written on them, and our home phone number.  I had given him my husbands first name.  He could work out where we lived.  He was a stranger, a man, I have young children … the thoughts flooded my mind … the fears, the “what ifs” …

I listened again … and I gave him the CDs …

As I left him smiling on the bench in the sunshine he told me he had planted tomatoes and they were growing on his balcony (he wasn’t homeless after all) … and he was looking forward to the crop … I could see he had caught some hope … and he said he would sit there again and wait to see if I would walk past again some time soon …

I jumped into my car, with the thoughts rushing through my head of what I needed to accomplish next, and as I drove past I waved to him, and he waved back, still smiling … and as I did I knew we were to be the community he so earnestly desired, wanted, needed.  I could see him whole …

I could see him full of Jesus, I could see him as God saw him …

We were to invite him into our world … we were to be the hands and feet of Jesus to him and so we were to invite him into our world, into a world with Jesus … and in doing so we would be inviting him into the family of Christ … and in doing so I trust that he will know that …

God is Good!

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