Treasures in Darkness… Christmas Shopping with Jesus

©Ron Dauphin on Unsplash
©Ron Dauphin on Unsplash

We had a few hours on a Saturday to do child free Christmas shopping before going to a movie. With our list in hand, we did not know that Jesus had His own Christmas shopping list for us to do too…!

I was in the ‘ladies’ when I found the first on His list. God told me to pray for someone outside my cubicle. Side note: Yes, He talks to me everywhere.

‘She has been a great blessing to others for many, many years, I want you to bless her’.

As I washed my hands, I looked at ‘her’ in the mirror.

She was an elderly woman waiting for her granddaughter. I introduced myself and stated that that I believed she had been a great blessing to many people over the years. I then asked if I could pray a blessing over her. She looked surprised but agreed.

Her name was Joy.

She was the second Joy I had prayed for that week and I mentally noted the ‘coincidence.’

I blessed Joy knowing that she knew Joy and was familiar with the Joy of God. She teared up a little as I prayed and blessed her, and once done, she asked if I would also pray for her granddaughter. I agreed and prayed and prophesied over her granddaughter, declaring her destiny would open and unfold, that she was a pillar and a leader in the coming move of God, which I believed would be a move that came through the youth in power. Joy excitedly said she had been praying for revival for years…

My husband had been waiting patiently outside. He knew what was going on inside because people were coming out from the bathroom saying in amazement that there was “someone praying in there for people…” and pointing back to the door. Andrew knew what I was up to and laughed. I hadn’t thought about that sort of impact, but it was quite funny…

Jesus assignment done, we got a coffee and discussed our shopping…

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As we waited for our coffees, I popped into another store to “bag” our first item. C served me, and yes, God had me pray for her. C was a young girl (about 16) who “felt” the anointing as I prayed. I prophesied she would discover who she was and why she was in the next two years. She had said she did not know, but my gosh, she was a marvellous girl!. I headed off with my purchase and sat with my husband to finish our coffee…

I felt I had done my dash, and we headed off to a sporting store. We purchased nothing, but on our way out I walked past a very disabled girl with her parents. Strapped into her wheelchair, her arms and legs fastened down. The girl’s body was small, deformed, and she displayed no control over her head movements. I felt God’s strong desire for me to pray, but I was so intimidated by the severity of her condition. I internally argued with God as we walked away from the store, but ultimately said:

‘Ok, for You, I’m willing to do it…’ and I went back to search the shop.

I found the girl with her parents waiting at the checkout. The intensity of my nerves made it an extreme fight to approach them. I fought the extreme urge to walk away, knowing that God really wanted me to ask if I could pray for her…

Stopping in front of her chair, I asked her parents if I could pray. I desperately did not want them to feel that I felt sorry for them, but I also wanted them to know that I cared. They agreed, so I knelt and addressed their daughter, who could not talk at all.

She was dribbling and had an angry-looking rash on her face from the dampness of her dribble. Her hands were unformed, and her body was tiny. I knelt and taking her hand in mine, and I quietly introduced myself. Her parents looked weary and watched on as I prayed, and her father leant in to listen.

As I prayed, she locked her gaze on mine. believe she could clearly feel God as I prayed for her. The frantic movements slowed, and she held onto my gaze several times. I prayed for her parents too and asked God to provide solutions.

Leaving the store, I thanked the girl and parents for stopping and allowing me to pray for them. I felt wobbly and said to Andrew it must be nerves; instead he encouraged me, suggesting it was the intensity of anointing…

©Janko Ferlic on unsplash

“Ok” I thought, “big one down”, shake, shake, shake, “gosh, ok, deep breath” shake, shake, shake…

I slowly settled down as we walked through Big W, fighting the negative thoughts, the accusations of failure and the residual impact of the nerves.

As the legs stopped shaking, I could focus on our task at hand. Andrew encouraging me all the way, we successfully made further purchases.

As we left God prompted me to pray for the cashier who said to me ‘I am not a Christian’ to which I said something like ‘that doesn’t matter, I can still bless you’ which I promptly did, placing my hand on his elbow as I spoke peace over him for this season of business.

It was time for our movie, so we headed toward the theatre. To our surprise, we had calmly and easily done all our shopping.

I felt quite successful, having bagged all that we had, and I waited while Andrew put our purchases into the car. As I stood, I tried to ignore a young girl in a wheelchair. I had noticed her out of the corner of my eye. I calmly ignored the very brief, quiet prompting, preferring to hear the louder “no” that came very much on top of the whispered ‘pray for her’. The prompt was so subtle, and I wanted to get to our movie on time, so I tried to ignore her, and I literally turned my back.

I stood and argued internally, but it was no good; I knew I had to stop for this one too.

©Krists Luhaers on unsplash

Walking over to the girl’s mother, I introduced myself, asked what her daughter had done and if I could pray. The Mum’s name was ‘A’ and was also with her teenage son, who looked like he had down syndrome, but who we later found out had autism. She looked back at me and immediately said yes, that would be great.

I knelt by the young girl (she was 14 years old) and she told me a brick wall had fallen on her, crushing and breaking one leg. The damage included the growth plate, so they had to do the same with the other leg in order that the legs would grow at the same rate.

I placed my hands on her legs (after she also gave me permission) and I prayed. She felt heat. I continued to pray and prophesy, while her friends stood by our side, politely not looking.

I asked her if she had asked Jesus into her heart. She said she had, but on a prompt I said ‘let’s do it again’ and so in response she asked Jesus into her heart. I suggested she ask that He fill her up, so she did. I continued to pray and when she said “enough” (a boundary we had agreed upon before I prayed) I thanked her and looked at her mother who then thanked me.

I thought I was going to go into the movie theatre after this and time was ticking along. We had not been to a movie for years by ourselves, so it was a real treat. However, I felt to pray for her brother and so turning to the mother I asked if I could pray for him too. She again readily agreed.

The boy called “B” was 16 years old. He swayed heavily under the anointing, and I motioned to Andrew, who quickly steadied him. He was incredibly ‘open’ to God’s presence.

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I felt to suggest he say, ‘Jesus, come into my heart’

He did.

I then felt to suggest to him, ‘say Jesus fill me up,’

B said ‘Jesus fill me up’, and on saying it he kept saying it, over and over, laughing and swaying heavily under the anointing.

I finished and turned to the mother, knowing I had to pray for her too.

‘Well, this is more important than being on time for the movie,’ I thought and I offered to pray.

She agreed.

As I prayed for the mother, the compassion of God came upon me and I nearly cried. She looked like she did too. I received words of knowledge about her–she was struggling (that was obviously a possibility given her two kids) she was making major decisions, and she was a single Mum.

She told me she had 3 children and had told my husband prior to me praying that she had found the recent challenges with her daughter’s injury tough. I prayed, and she quietly received; she was so very thirsty for God and drank Him in, and as I finished praying for her, I placed my arms around her and held her close for a long, long time.

I went to release my hug, but she hung on, so I hugged her some more and when I felt it was enough, I again tried to disengage, but she again hung on again. So, I continued to hold her, yet feeling quite embarrassed by now. Again I went to release her, but she continued to hang onto me quietly. I tried again, and she hung on again… so I just stood in the middle of the busy shopping centre and let her drink and cling to me for what seemed an eternity…

I gave her our church card, and I wrote my private number on it so she could call me if she felt she wanted.

As we walked away my husband said to me he believed we were there, not so much for the daughter, but for the Mother, who had been through such a tough time, for Jesus says:

‘If anyone is thirsty, let him come to me and drink. Whoever believes in me… streams of living water will flow from within him.’ John 7:38-39

We saw our movie, but we missed the promos. This did not bother us at all. We even had time to go to the bathroom and settle in before the movie started. God had it all timed beautifully and I am so glad that I did not rush because He had treasures in the darkness to give…

 

©Doz Gabrial unsplash

This is what the Lord says to his anointed…

‘I will go before you and will level the mountains;

I will break down gates of bronze and cut through bars of iron.

I will give you the treasures of darkness,

riches stored in secret places,

so that you may know that I am the Lord,

the God of Israel, who summons you by name. Isaiah 45:2-3 NIV

Every person I encountered was a treasure in the darkness, waiting to be discovered. Each was a treasure set out for me to discover, to find, to uncover and my footsteps ordered by a loving and knowing God. He not only blessed us with the miracle of a great time together, Christmas shopping in the Christmas rush, but He also entrusted 10 people that all needed a touch from their mighty and loving God. Ten people altered for ever more. He left those treasures out for me to find because …

God is Good.

Post Script: The shopping day was a Saturday, a few years ago now. I wrote the story up on a Tuesday, and just as I finished writing the mum rang me with the following report:

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©Freestocks on unsplash
  1. Her daughter stood without crutches on the Sunday;
  2. Her son lost his aggression and was much calmer. There was a change in his eyes, and they looked ‘more alert.’ He had stopped asking about his father who left the family earlier that and she said the ‘worry has lifted from his face’, he is ‘much calmer’. She told me he continues to say ‘Jesus fill me up’ and is laying hands on his mother and family friends and asking ‘can you feel that?’ and she can;
  3. The mum (A) felt much more at peace (in her home and in herself). The night before meeting us she was suicidal, and when she saw us across the shops, she stood willing us to come over. She said there was a light around both Andrew and I that she saw and wanted to be near. From that afternoon A cared for herself properly, eating 3 meals a day, and was feeling at peace.
  4. A told me she had thought about the encounter every day. She believed it was not a coincidence that we met. Just before she met us she had looked for a car park and just knew that she would find one on the middle level (where she met us) at about 1.30pm, just in time to meet us after getting her daughter out of the car with the wheelchair. She said that she had told her daughter that there would be a car park for them in that place, and there was a reason for the delay in finding one.

During our discussion on the telephone, A gave her heart to Christ. We talked at length and she shared some of her story with me. She also asked for and received the gift of tongues, feeling a ‘tingling up and down her legs’ as we prayed. She also felt the tingles over her head, as she had done earlier. Her ‘spirit spot’ burned lightly as we talked and prayed.

Post Post Script:
I kept in contact with A over Christmas and eventually arranged a coffee at my home in mid-January.

The bell rang, and on answering the door A was with her daughter who was standing. Her daughter’s name also begins with A so I will call her Little A. I stood looking at Little A and they both laughed at my shock. Little A was walking, without leg braces, without a wheelchair and without a walking stick.

After my initial shock, they came into my home where I heard the story.

©Julia Raasch unsplash

Little A had stood for the first time unaided the day after I had prayed for her. She had been told on 6th January by her physiotherapist that she would need the wheelchair, leg braces and a crutch for another 6 weeks. Yet, she was walking completely unaided on 18th January… 12 days later! At the six week mark she was back training with cadets.

Apparently she had been walking not long after being prayed for. They had gone on holidays after Christmas at a caravan park in Phillip Island. They took the wheelchair, but had not used it, and she had been walking unaided since.

So, here she was, walking well, on Wednesday 18th January, having had two broken legs and having been told she would need a wheelchair, leg braces and a walking stick for at least another 6 weeks on 6th January…!

On this visit, Little A explained that she still needed more strength in her legs. I laid hands on her legs and called strength into her thigh muscles and as I did her mother, my daughter and I noticed her knee caps moving up and down with no input from her, as if her thigh muscles were being contracted and released. She did not feel it, it just happened.

She stood and tried them out and I prayed again, and it happened again…

Her Mother and I concluded her thigh muscles must have been being strengthened supernaturally. It was the oddest thing to watch her knee caps bobbing up and down in a rapid movement!

After we finished praying and we went for a walk during which I heard more of her story.

Apparently A’s family transformed. Her son was no longer violent, she was walking in abundant favour, disputes settled supernaturally, with no effort on her part. She shared how she had told a friend who was also in a place of despair how she too could be free-she was ready to give what she had received away to others!

A said the entire journey had been remarkable, the turnaround, marvellous…

I just listened in awe, knowing that it was all a miracle, and I noted that I nearly did not stop for them because I wanted to get to the movies on time…

I wondered how many others I had simply walked past… 

How many others may have had a life transformed… had I stopped for the one…  

I am certain that there is no condemnation in Christ, but how His heart yearns for us to recognise and to step into who we truly are, to co-labour with Him in the family business.

… all creation groans…

©Clay Banks on Unsplash

Will we be bold enough to step into our inheritance and bring others with us?

Dare we to lay claim to the “treasures of darkness, riches stored in secret places” (Is45:3) and set them free?

Dare we take people by the hand and say “come”?

God is breath taking in His beauty, in His kindness, in His Glory!

Dare we?

I know I must for…

God IS Good!

Destinies, dancing and release … Part 3

Continued from previous post at: Destinies, dancing and release … Part one and Part Two

A theme was beginning to emerge …

There was creativity to be released, God-given destinies to be fulfilled, people to be released from their past, from their present, from their assumed “futures”, and from their circumstances ….

There were passions to be revealed, to be released, to be uncovered … so that God’s desired futures could be revealed and stepped into, with boldness, clarity and fullness …

There was a desire of God to see His children (whether they knew him or not) to step into their God-given destinies …

And so … the following day after an enjoyable day and a good nights sleep we were back down the street looking for one more item for my husband, an extra that he had said he wanted …

We headed out, looked, and found some jeans on sale instead … bagged those and headed back out into the street where I saw a bag shop … a girlie bag shop for girlie girls …

We checked the time and checked our intentions to enter the shop with God … after all … it was His agenda … not ours … that we were called to fulfill, to honour and to meet as a Beloved Child of the most High God …

With the go ahead on both fronts we wandered in, and I found a simple design … just the right thing for me to replace an old travel bag I had been using for years.  It was pretty, but very practical, and still able to be slung over my shoulder so I could scooter up the street with the kids, but not drab and ugly like the one I had used for so very long …

As we paid for the bag I again knew I had to pray for the girl.  I could feel the anointing of God swirling around and I could feel the familiar pull to offer to pray, to bless and to release yet another loved one into their destiny … I was to encourage, to inspire and to love on behalf of My Loving God!

I offered to pray, as people milled around the small store.

The girl agreed. 

My husband stepped back, so as to give a sense of privacy to the two of us, and I started. 

I sensed she had not yet stepped into her passion, that she was not doing what she loved.  I said so … she agreed … and so I declared her destiny open, I released her into her destiny, and said that I sensed she was highly creative, very artistic, and that she had submerged that passion, that dream.  I said that she had hidden the dream since she was little girl, the passion had been submerged so deeply … but that it was time for her to dream again, to allow that passion to arise, and so I called it forth.

I saw her painting … and I told her so …

Tears streamed down her face as she tried to compose herself … apologising for the flow of emotion … and she said “how did you know? How did you know? I am an artist but I have not painted for ages, it’s what I love, it’s who I am …”

I said that I had simply told her what I “saw”, what God had “shown” me and said to her again that she was created to be creative, to be an artist, and that God loved her so much that He wanted to see her fulfil her God-given destiny more than she did … and so I encouraged her to start painting again, to step into it … smiling at her through my own tears for her.

I encouraged her to pursue her passion again …

I dared her to dream again …

She nodded saying she would start to paint, she would start to dream and she smiled through the tears as we left the store …

I had bagged a bag (:-)) and she had been touched by a loving God …

I called to her as I left the store that if she did start to paint again she would shine simply because she was created to paint, she was created for greatness, simply because …

God is Good!

… to be continued …

Crossing my chicken line…the lame DID walk…part 2 … releasing a word of hope and life – God is Good!

Easter Saturday I was set up by God to “cross the chicken line” by being given an assignment to pray for an elderly woman in a wheel chair.  She had got up and walked off into the shops after prayer for an injured knee, leaving her daughter-in-law and I standing beside a wheel chair she had gleefully left behind (click here for story).

I left the story at this point – the elderly woman happy and apparently healed of all her pain and discomfort … shopping … and while I had finished there, so much more occurred …

If you did not read the post click here to read for the context …

After the elderly woman trotted off to shop I turned to her daughter-in-law who was in awe of what had just occurred, and as she watched she explained that her mother-in-law did not believe in God …  she was breathless at how amazing it all was, and how God had shown His hand to an unbelieving woman …

I gently placed my hand on the daughter-in-law’s upper back, behind her shoulder, where I felt God direct me to touch her, and I asked if I could now pray for her.  She nodded enthusiastically, still watching her mother-in-law walking through the store with a big smile … and tears began to fill the daughter-in-law’s eyes.

She turned to me and as I invited the Holy Spirit to come a strong sense of God enveloped us.  She started to openly weep and I started to sense some of what she had been through.  I asked her/said to her … “you have been through a really tough season, but I sense that God is saying it is a new season … a season of joy, and hope, …” and with that I commanded all darkness to leave in the name of Jesus and released life and light into and over her.  She gasped and looked up at me and said with a smile that in that instant she felt a heavy darkness lift off her and she said she felt light … and that she felt full of light and hope … I smiled and said that Jesus wanted her free … that He came to give us life in all of its fullness, and to give it to us abundantly (John 10:10) …

I continued to pray as I felt led, and cut off all generational curses in the name of Jesus.  I then released a blessing over her and her family, declared her destiny open in the name of Jesus and asked God to release the stockpiled generational blessings that were there over her and her family.  She stood and wept some more …

As I prayed I felt some of the strength of God’s love for her, it was powerful and strong and I found myself getting teary … I asked if I could hug her and give her a kiss on the forehead, to bless her with the Father’s blessing  … she agreed and so I wrapt my arms about her and kissed her gently, releasing the blessing of the Father over her and as I gently held her she sobbed some more as we stood by the wheel chair in front of the store …

She eventually quieted, looked up at me, and I gently explained that while I believed that God wanted her mother-in-law healed,I felt that the appointment was in fact for her.  I went on to explain that I had been waiting for them to come, that God had wanted me to wait … and as soon as I had seen them I knew they were the ones I was to stop for and offer to pray …

She continued to cry and as we stood talking, unbeknownst to me, her son and husband came up behind us.  She took my hand and earnestly and asked if I would bless her son, as I had done for her.  She turned to her husband and explained all that had happened … pulling her son over to me … and she quietly explained to me that they did not believe either, but would I please pray for her boy …

I turned, expecting a little boy, and instead was before a young man, taller than me … who was, I found out later, 23 years of age.  I asked him if I could pray for him, explaining what I would do.  He agreed, and so I laid my hand on his arm and invited the Holy Spirit to come … knowing and trusting that, although he, his father and grandmother did not believe in God, God loved them regardless because always, and through and through …

God is Good!

to be continued …

Stopping for the Irish…Stopping for the one…God is Good!

Just after New Year’s my husband and I were in town taking advantage of the sales.  We had finished up in a store and were paying for our purchases and as we did I turned and spoke to a family fresh from the shores of Ireland.

The mother had spoken to me earlier, as I had tried on a summer dress.  She was kind and full of energy and enthusiasm.  Her daughter and husband were with her.  The woman and her daughter looked like they were going to the races with their pretty summer dresses on, heels and huge sun hats … gorgeous but quite out of the ordinary for shopping in inner -city Melbourne.

As we paid I overheard their daughter’s name – it was the same as my own daughter’s and so, taking the “hint” from God I checked whether I was to “stop for the one” and offer to pray … I was … and so I mentioned the “coincidence” …

I asked the young girl if she knew the meaning of her name, she didn’t, and so I told her and as I did I offered to pray for her …

I asked her parents if I could pray and the parents agreed – good naturedly.  As I prayed a blessing I started to prophesy over her … I asked her whether she was 11, she was, and I started to speak into her future … the next 10 years that would be so very pertinent to her growth and future …

The parents watched me … my husband watched them …

Later, my husband mentioned to me that he had the feeling that the mother acted a bit as if the whole deal was a bit “cute” … until a moment came when there was a shift of attitude from the mother and her focus became intense.  I believe it was possibly when the anointing became tangible, as I started to move into calling out her daughter’s destiny … when ever and what ever it was … there was apparently a definite shift of attitude …

I finished the prayer and smiled, thanking the daughter and the parents for allowing me to pray.  I asked if I could hug her and he parents agreed and as I finished hugging the daughter the mother threw herself into my arms, eyes full of tears and thanked me with an intensity that caused me to take a step back (figuratively speaking) … I was a bit overwhelmed … she was so grateful for what I had said done …

Having not been aware of the parents joking attitude at first, but discussing it afterwards, I realised that obviously some transaction had taken place that was significant for the family … I had felt the anointing … but it was obvious later due to full-on response from the mother …

We left with our goodies in our hands … business shirts in bag and a new summer dress 🙂 …

And, this lovely Irish family, that had just reached our shores to live, left with God’s promises for their daughter … His encouragement for a good future in a foreign land, where different pressures would come to play out on her life as compared to a life in Ireland, and, as I pointed out to the young girl … God obviously loved her a lot if He was going to put it onto my heart … a stranger’s heart … to stop and offer to pray for them to call out details of her inner beauty, to call out her potential and future promise …

The future is good for this young girl … and I trust and hope that she will always remember that God loved enough to speak to me about her … He let a stranger “read her mail” and call out her future …

I trust it will be an encounter that she remembers when she doubts her worth … I encouraged her that she was significant enough for me to stop, sense the heart of God for her and to step out and offer to pray … even though it was uncomfortable for me to do so …

I trust the same for her mother … when she doubts …

I trust that through this encounter with God that they will remember and hold dear in their hearts that indeed

God is Good!