Prayer for Chinese Retreat

mao mao on the rock

Dearest Readers,

Deeper Still is having a specialized retreat at our home location next week for some of our Chinese friends. We have 8 participants flying in from various places.  Will you please pray with us?

“My heart is confident in you, O God; my heart is confident.  No wonder I can sing your praises!  Wake up, my heart!  Wake up, O lyre and harp!  I will wake the dawn with my song.  I will thank you, Lord, among all the people.  I will sing your praises among the nations.  For your unfailing love is as high as the heavens, your faithfulness reaches to the clouds. Be exalted, O God, above the highest heavens.  May Your glory shine over all the earth.” Psalms 57: 7-11

Father, our hearts are confident in you.  Lord, wake up the hearts of those that are coming to the Chinese retreat next week.  Lord, put a new song in each heart that they may awaken the dawn with a song singing your praises among the nations.  May the truth of your unfailing love reach to the clouds and may you be exalted, O God, above the highest heavens. May your glory shine over all the earth.  In Jesus’ Name, Amen.

Music filled the air, soft and beautiful like the song of a lark rising above the trees.  With my coffee in hand looking out over the beauty of the mountains, my eyes shifted in search of the origin of the sound.  There on the rock was one of our beautiful Chinese participants singing praises to her King Jesus.  Her song filled the air without pause.  I lifted my camera in hopes to capture the moment.  Her voice was awakened.  This memory forever etched in my mind. 

Her picture is above. 
Later she would share how before the weekend retreat, she never felt free enough to praise and worship her King Jesus.  Now that her voice was released, her soul longed to praise and worship without end.  She sang all afternoon and evening, worshipping Jesus for all He had done in her and for her. 

Oh Lord, do this again.  Bring a new song to each participant’s heart that comes.  Awaken their hearts and may they wake the dawn with a song. 

 

Surprised by Freedom

yellow flowers2

 

“Now Peter continued knocking, and when they opened the door and saw him, they were astonished…he declared to them how the Lord has brought him out of the prison.” Acts 12:16-17

Father, we thank you for bringing us out of prison.  Thank you for the freedom you give to those once in bondage from the sin of abortion.  Lord, may those we tell see and believe in the great and mighty power you have to heal and set free.  Let those set free go and tell of your great works. May we come to expect to see your people once in bondage knocking at our door with freedom bursting from their lips.  In Jesus’ mighty name, Amen.

Sitting across the table enjoying our last meal together before the weekend retreat came to an end, one of the participants shared with me how a counselor we both knew expressed astonishment in how free I was to share my story.

This counselor’s reaction reminded me of how the disciples responded after finding out Peter had been freed from prison.  The disciples were praying for Peter to be freed and then nearly fell over in disbelief when he was outside the door!

Jesus came for freedom.

“It is for freedom that Christ has set us free.”  Galations 5:1

Isn’t freedom what we should come to expect as Christians?  If we are surprised by it, what does that say about who Jesus is?

My hope is that freedom would be the norm.  May we never lose our awe of the power of Christ to break the chains and deliver the captives from the prison, but at the same time, I pray we come to expect it.

The Lord is continually driving me to deeper levels and there is more freedom to obtain, but I cannot express the thankfulness for the deliverance from the bars of abortion.

Just as Peter was freed from the prison and fled to share the news with his friends, I pray for those released from the prison of abortion to advance and proclaim the Lord’s rescue.

May so many rise up in freedom that the world would stand in awe and be astonished.  May the Lord Jesus be seen for who He is—the One who brings hope and declares freedom for the captives.  May we come to expect freedom because that is who Jesus is—our Healer, our Deliverer, our Hope, our Salvation, our Soon-Coming King.

A New Song

mao mao on the rock with scripture

 

“He also brought me up out of a horrible pit, out of the miry clay, and set my feet upon a rock, and established my steps.  He has put a new song in my mouth–praise to our God; many will see it and fear, and will trust in the Lord.” Psalms 40:2-3

Dear Lord, thank you for the new songs you put in the mouths and hearts of every participant that came to the fall Deeper Still retreats and for the new songs you will place in the hearts of those coming to the retreat in Atlanta at the end of October.  You are good, Oh Lord.  We give you all praise and glory and honor!  Amen.

The song that is playing on repeat in my head is “Beautiful Things” by Gungor.  You can click here to play the song.  The chorus says, “You make beautiful things out of dust.  You make beautiful things out of us.”

When I went through my Deeper Still retreat four years ago, it was hard to put into words all the Lord did in my heart that weekend.  What was even more amazing to me was the transformation that happened in every single person there that weekend.  I knew what the Lord did in me, but when I looked around the room, I saw the beautiful things the Lord did all around me.  I was in awe.

My heart cried, “Lord, will you let me be a part of this?  I want to be a part of what You are doing here.”  I remembered the words of Henry Blackaby, “Find where God is at work and join Him there.”  God was definitely at work and I had to be a part of it.

The Lord has been working and many lives have been transformed over the last few weeks as Deeper Still chapters across the country have been having their fall retreats.  The Lord has put a new song in many hearts–songs of freedom!

Here are some quotes from those whom the Lord has set free over the last few weeks.  Rejoice and give praise to the Lord with us as we listen to voices proclaiming freedom…

“Coming into the retreat I had self-condemnation, strained relationships, and needed to be able to move forward. The team helped me to see the wall around my heart and tear it down. I was shown I am worthy and redeemed. All the visuals brought Scripture to life. I did not think I needed to attend a Deeper Still retreat. I really felt certain I had worked through the pain and sin through counseling. Yet I had no joy or peace in my life. The thought of attending was so intimidating. But when I arrived I felt a warmth and comfort. It was a weekend of spiritual surgery to erase the dark spots still hiding in my heart. I leave knowing my heart is whole and I am a child of the King. Praise God!”

“I had no idea how much I needed this retreat and how much I would benefit from participating in it 47 years after my abortion. I heard God’s Words of confirmation of my freedom from guilt and shame to now being His daughter.”

“Coming into this retreat I felt guilt, unworthiness in God’s eyes, and worried about bad stuff coming in my future. Now I am assured of forgiveness. I am worthy and no longer fear retribution. I liked the genuineness, love, dedication, and commitment of the team.”

“This retreat was amazing. I learned first that Jesus is LOVE. I was taught that Jesus has and never will give up on me. He accepts me with open arms. I’m forgiven and set free by the Holy Spirit. I’m free from the strongholds of thinking evil and from living in the sin of abortion. Thank You Jesus!!”

“Every detail of the retreat was God-breathed and planned with and for a purpose and I thank God for sending me this direction. So many things were explained and answered that have given me peace. Words cannot express this blessing. Thank you!”

“Everything about this retreat was helpful. It was eye-opening and I know it’s changed my life. I never expected half of what happened this weekend. This weekend has given me strength to call and cry out to God and to persevere and continue to go Deeper still. I loved this whole experience and everyone involved.”

“I had received a lot of healing previously but didn’t realize how much more healing I needed! God was faithful to bring things to mind as healing prayers were going on. The words and “pictures painted” during the teaching time were instrumental in bringing other healing needs to mind. I am free and it looks like pure joy. Thank You!”

“Coming into this retreat, I struggled with self abuse and not feeling worthy. All these issues were addressed and more.  I was able to honor my babies. This experience has changed me and healed me forever. “

Aren’t those words beautiful?  The Lord is giving beauty for ashes.  What a blessing to see the captives being set free!  Praise be to our God and King!

If you have had an abortion or want more information about the Deeper Still Ministry, please visit our website at www.godeeperstill.org

I Hate My Story

 

 

mess to message

“He has made everything beautiful in its time. Also, He has put eternity in their hearts, except that no one can find out the work that God does from beginning to end.”  Ecclesiastes 3:11

Father, thank you that you have made all things beautiful in its time.  Lord, I pray for those coming to the retreat this weekend.  I pray they would forgive all that needs forgiving.  Lord, I pray for you to make beautiful the things they hate about their stories.  I pray for you to renew and restore sevenfold all things that have been stolen from them.  Make all things beautiful and set eternity in their hearts.  You know the end of the story and it is glorious.  In Jesus’ Name, Amen.

Tears flooded my eyes.  My emotions were at war.  One fighting to save face, the other fighting to release the pain pent up inside.  Pain won over pride.   I was at a large national pro-life conference.  The beauty of speaker’s heart radiated outward.  At the age of seventy-five, she had lived a long life for the Lord full of courage, overflowing joy, tremendous heartache, and overwhelming victories.  She shared of a woman she knew who was considering abortion but choose life and how her now twenty-year-old child grew to be a lovely person on fire for the Lord—the child she considered aborting.

Although I have had much healing, these stories still stir up pain.  How I wished I had my twenty-something year old here on this earth to cherish and hold and tell her how much I love her.  How I long to embrace my daughter in heaven and be the mother I should have been to her.  As this beautiful story of victory rang in my ears and tears invaded my eyes, words I have often thought rose up capturing my attention…

I hate my story. 

I have told the Lord this before.  He is well aware.  This day he reminded me of this place in my heart and His plan of redemption for it.

As if hearing the story at the conference of someone making a good choice wasn’t enough to get my attention, the Lord then gave me a word.  This beautiful 75-year-old lady had words she had written down for us.  She had prayed over these words and believed the Lord would use these words to speak to us.  One by one we went up to receive our words.

Three other Deeper Still team members were present and went up to receive their words as well.  Afterwards, filled with expectation, we opened our words to share with each other.  Their words were wonderful!

Unique.  Inspirational.  Abundance.

What great words!  Then I opened mine.

Forgive.

What?  What does that mean?  I searched my heart.  Do I need to forgive someone?  No one was coming to mind.  I didn’t like my word.

Again the Lord reminded of my thoughts.

“I hate my story”.

Forgive.  But Lord I have forgiven myself.

Forgive Me.

But Lord we’ve been through all this before.  First of all, you are God, there is nothing to forgive.  This was my choice.  I use to wonder why you didn’t intervene, but now I see you tried but my mind was made up.  You won’t interfere with free will.  So there is nothing to forgive you for.

Inwardly struggling, I ask the Lord for clarification.

It came.

Forgive Me.  Completely forgive me.  Trust me fully. There is a part of you who still questions my goodness because You question my faithfulness.  You question if my plan for you is always and completely good.  Do you trust the Author?  Do you trust Me to make all things beautiful in its time?  I am flawless.  I am good.  I am never failing.  I never make mistakes.  But if you think I made a mistake in the past, it will cause you to question my goodness.  You will question my faithfulness.  You will doubt in my provision.  This is why the word Forgive.  This is why.  My beloved daughter, I need you to trust me.  Trust me in the process.  Trust in my timing. Trust me to do above and beyond anything you can ask, think or imagine.  Trust that the story I am writing has an ending full of glory. 

The best stories never stop in the middle.  If you were to stop some of the classic best stories of all time in the middle, those stories would no longer be classics. Instead, their destination would be the thrift store in VHS form collecting dust (and if you don’t know what a VHS is, that is exactly my point).

I am asking the Lord to help me fall in love with my story because although the ending hasn’t been revealed, I know the ending is epic because I know the Author and He is an excellent Author.

The same is true for you.  Perhaps like me, you have thought how you wished your story was different.  That is ok.  Regret is not bad when it leads us to the Cross of repentance and the nail pierced feet of Jesus Christ.  But He is the great redeemer.  He turns our mess into our message.  He turns all things the enemy meant for evil and uses them for good.  Will you believe with me today that the best is coming, that the end of the story is glorious?  We don’t want to close this book before we finish.  We need to finish to reach the best part of the story.  Keep walking with Him my friend, trusting in the Author.  The best is yet to come.  Lord help us fall in love with the Author and the story knowing the story He is writing is amazing.

God’s Not Afraid of the Dark {Repost}

light in dark quote

 

“If I ascend into heaven, You are there; If I make my bed in hell, behold, You are there. “ Psalm 139:8

Lord, I pray the abortion wounded and participants of Deeper Still would receive this truth that you are with them and have never left.  And I pray those considering abortion this day to have a revelation of your presence and that you are a very present help in time of trouble.  Lord, you alone can rescue. We ask you to rescue.   Jesus’ Name, Amen. 

Abortion is dark.   There is nothing about abortion that brings life and light.  Abortion brings death and darkness.  The Lord is light in the darkness.  God has never been afraid of the dark.  Jesus singlehandedly took on the greatest darkness and evil when He chose to take all our sin upon Himself, give His life for us, and go into the depths of hell to conquer sin and death for all eternity.

Jesus wasn’t afraid to take death head on nearly 2000 years ago and He persists in pushing back the darkness.  The enemy laughed and thought he won the day Jesus hung on the cross.  However, he didn’t know the end of the story.  From the moment Jesus cried “It is finished”, the enemy’s laughter ceased.  In that moment, he was finished, death was defeated and the curse of sin conquered.

Every time the doors of an abortion clinic are opened, the enemy laughs, thinking he has won a battle.  He doesn’t realize there is more to the story.

The Lord gave me a picture the other night during a worship service. ..

The room was dark and there was a shadow on a table.  It was me.  It was the day I had my abortion.  There were screams.  My mind was foggy and I wanted to escape.  I wanted to be rescued, but still I didn’t move.  It is all as if it was a bad nightmare from which I can never awake.  Then I saw the Lord.  He was there.  He was there with me that day in my hell.  Beside the cold sterile metal table, He knelt.  He cried.  He prayed. 

Perhaps you may not believe He was there with me that day.   “If I make my bed in hell, behold, you are there.” Ps 139: 8.  He was there.

What was he praying?  I believe He was praying for the end of my story.  See, the enemy isn’t able to see the end of the story, but the Lord can.  He knows the end of the story.

I wouldn’t allow the Lord to rescue me that day.  The hardness of my heart wouldn’t allow the Lord to penetrate at that time.  However, the Lord knew there would be a day when He would have my heart once more and I would be truly and fully His again.  He knew there would be a day when victory would be my shout and cry and the enemy’s laughter would cease.  The Lord knew what the enemy meant for evil, He would use for good, for the advancement of His Kingdom.

The same is true for you.  The Lord was with you in your darkness, praying for you, loving you.  He knows the end of your story.

No, the Lord is not afraid of the dark.  He knows the end of the story and the victory is His.

 

But I Don’t Regret My Abortion

“And do not be conformed to this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind, that you may prove what is that good and acceptable and perfect will of God.”  Romans 12:2

Father, will you awaken the hearts of the mothers and fathers to their children.  Father, please reveal your truth regarding life and soften the hearts of those hurt and hardened by the sin of abortion.  In Jesus’ Name, amen.

About a year after my abortion, I was on a break from college and visiting family in my hometown.  Somewhere in the conversations over the break, my uncle asked me if I regretted my abortion.  My twenty-year-old self was a little taken back by his question.  Did he really just ask me that question?  Defenses immediately sprung up like an iron wall.  Heart hard and tone cold, I replied, “No, why would I regret it.  My life would be ruined.  I would be divorced trying to raise a baby and not in school. My life would be over.”

My uncle would never know how every morning the abortion was the first thought on my mind.  He would never know how the decision haunted me until depression settled in.  He would never be told of how many nights were spent in tears until finally in the name of self-protection, I enclosed my heart in an iron case, artificially numbed my pain in self-destructive behaviors, and strongly defended my choice.

“Life ruined and over.”  Strong statements.  At twenty, those words felt true.

At nineteen and twenty years of age, present circumstances determined my course.  All I could see was how a pregnancy and a baby would affect my life.  In all honesty, it was all about me and my needs.

All had seemed to turn out well for me, so why would I regret that decision?

This question is loaded and full of answers.  All of which cannot be address on one post. In future posts, I will do what I can to unpack some answers to this question.  One thing I know, if my uncle asked me the same question today he asked me 24 years ago, the answer would be, “Yes.  Without a doubt, yes, I regret my decision.  I wish with all my heart I would have made a different choice.”  If you are considering an abortion, I pray these words would penetrate and soften your heart. If you have had an abortion, I pray these words would also soften your heart and for you to see the need for healing.  Please visit our website www.godeeperstill.org for more information about our healing retreats and hear testimonies of others who have found healing and have gone deeper still with the Lord in their healing.

 

Prayer for Deeper Still Training

“That they may be called oaks of righteousness, the planting of the Lord for the display of His splendor.”  Isaiah 61:3b

Father, we lift up the Deeper Still Training happening this weekend.  Lord, may you bring the people you have ordained and called and set apart for such a time as this to rise up and be a voice for the voiceless and become the mighty army, the oaks of righteousness for the displaying of Your splendor, O Lord, proclaiming Your truth and setting the captives free.  In Jesus’ Name, Amen.

As the summer Deeper Still team made Thursday preparations for the retreat on Friday at a local lake house in Knoxville, an unexpected crinkle happened in the plan.  It was a simmering summer day reaching into the nineties.  As we made beds, unpacked items for the retreat and organized all materials needed for the weekend of glory, all of a sudden the lights went out.  The air conditioning stopped and we realized we had no electrical power whatsoever in the home.  Thinking we just blew a fuse, we began to head to the fuse box.  However, before we made it to the box, a team member came to the leaders wide eyed and said, “Did you see it?  A huge tree just fell in the cul-de-sac just outside the driveway of the house.  I just pulled in before it fell.  I almost fell on me. “ What?  No way.

 

 

A huge oak tree had fallen, taking power lines down with it, blocking safe passage.  As explained in another post, (link “When Holy Spirit Power is Your Only Option”), we as a team decided prayer and worship was our most powerful weapon.  We determined to rely on His power over electrical power and as a result, the tree was cleared and power was restored in less than an hour.  Amazing.

As we prayed more into this situation, we felt like the Lord may have been also using this fallen tree as a physical representation about what He was about to do spiritually in the lives of those coming to this retreat.

There was no reason for this tree to have fallen.  It was a beautiful summer day.  No wind.  No storms or even rain.  The sun was shining and this huge tree just fell out of nowhere.  However, as we sought the Lord, we felt like he revealed why the tree fell—its roots.  This huge tree’s roots were land locked.  This tree planted decades ago was now surrounded by a street and homes.  These roots had no room expand, nowhere to go and no way to continually be nourished.  As a result, the tree was weak and dry.

What the Lord began to show us as that He wanted to uproot the old and replant by streams of living water to continually nourish and bring forth life and growth.  Old ways of thinking, doing and being represent our old root systems.  If we are not renewing our minds with the truth of God’s Word and not nourishing our spirit with living water, then our roots will dry up and become weak.  God needs to uproot the old systems and renew and refresh our roots.  In Psalms 1:3, it says,

“He shall be like a tree planted by rivers of water,  that brings forth its fruit in its season, whose leaf also shall not wither and whatever he does shall prosper.”

When we are walking with the Lord and in His truth, His Word refreshes our souls.  He is our living water.  Without Him, our roots will dry up and we will fall.  The good news is that He is always there ready to replant us by streams of His water if we will surrender.

At the retreats, we see the participants exchange old root systems of insecurity, unworthiness, shame, guilt, despair and condemnation for new root systems of identity in Christ, worthiness, forgiveness, joy, freedom, beauty, and praise.  The transformation is glorious to witness and to be a part of it is indescribable.   God uproots the old in order to bring forth the new for increase.

If you want to help with replanting God’s people by streams of living water, there is training for Deeper Still this weekend in Knoxville, TN, September 15, 16, 2017.  This training is for anyone with an interest in learning more about abortion wounds and healing, becoming part of this life changing team, or starting a chapter.  You can go to www.godeeperstill.org for more information about registration and schedule.  We’d love to have you be a part of what God is doing through Deeper Still to bind the broken hearted and set the captives free.  Thank you for praying with us today.

Awakening on the Water

Something Blue

“You have made my heart beat faster, my sister, my bride; You have made my heart beat fast with a single glance of your eyes.”  Song of Solomon 4:9

Dear Heavenly Father, Your love is incomprehensible.  We ask for you to awaken your bride from her slumber.  Father, will you awaken your bride and stir up in her a desire for more of You.  Will you awaken your people to their need for You and for how the body of Christ needs healing?  May we not go our own way but instead move as You move.  Move on our hearts oh Lord.  Move us to move in prayer. Move us to move.  In Jesus’ Name, Amen.

While at the beach this summer, I felt the Lord impressed the following words in my spirit.  It was a beautiful time reflecting on His presence and His peace.

“Water is a vessel.  It can carry things.  It moves things.  Water in and of itself is still.  Quiet.  You are a vessel.  Be still and know that I am God.  Be still.  Water is still but when the wind blows upon it and currents rush through it, it gets stirred.  Waves form and it becomes POWERFUL.  But first it must be still.  If it were to be resistive to the flow and wind and try to go its own way in its own power, it would miss the true power and potential it has to create force and move the way I intend for it to move.  Water doesn’t have a will of its own so as the wind blows, it moves and power is created.

You as a vessel must remain still in this same way.  Be still and as you are still, I can move.  I can be the wind that moves you and power can flow.  It is my wind, my flow that produces power.  Be still.  When you get worried or try to go your own way or force things to happen on your own, I cannot move as powerfully as I’d like.  Be still.

Being still means letting go.  It is more vulnerable to be still for you are letting go of your control and power, leaving yourself vulnerable.  There is a vulnerability in the still as you wait and rely on my strength.  You are still.  Waiting for me to move.  It goes back to what I said to you earlier this year, the way to move forward is to be still.

To be vulnerable is to give up control.   It is putting yourself in a position without walls…just out there.  Like Floating in an ocean.

When you are floating, you cannot see what is beneath you, You really don’t have much control over where you are going unless you put your foot down, but that is taking back control.  You have no idea what is beneath you or coming at you or what has swum by you.  It’s all about letting go.  It’s about letting the wind move you, trusting the wind, trusting the Lord has you and is protecting you. “

The deeper you go, the more you have to trust me.  The deeper you go, the bigger the fish get.  You have to trust me.  And the deeper you go, there is no longer the security and safety of putting your feet down.  You WILL be vulnerable.  and you have  to trust me.”

In the deep waters is where we build our trust muscles.  As the security of the sand dissipates, we can only rely on the Rock.

As a ministry team, we are floating on the water holding hands or locking arms while floating.  Joy comes in the strength of trusting Jesus together.  Waiting can be about God’s sovereign timing, but it can also be about what moves the heart of God to move.  As we sing in unity over the waters, the heart of the Bridegroom is stirred.  We sing for the bride of Christ to wake up from slumber and be desperate for Him.

Out in the deep, we are unable to move in the direction of the divine will of the Father without the power of the wind and currents moving us to move. We are desperate for the hand of God.

“You have made my heart beat faster, my sister, my bride; You have made my heart beat fast with a single glance of your eyes.”  Song of Solomon 4:9

Will you sing with us and praise Him and call forth His compassions to move on behalf of His people?  It is time for an awakening.  It is time for the bride to be ready to meet her Groom.

 

Why We Do What We Do

“And let us not grow weary while doing good, for in due season we shall reap if we do not lose heart.”  Galations 6:9

Father, I pray that we as a nation would not grow weary in doing good.  I pray for those with a heart for life to be bold and encouraged to continue to stand and speak for truth.  Let us stand and rise up as a mighty army of truth and light to defeat death and darkness.  In Jesus’ Name, Amen.

A friend and Deeper Still Chapter Leader, Laurie Haynes, wrote about an experience she had recently on her Facebook page.  I asked her if I could share it today:

“I’m really struggling today. I was working at the PRC (Pregnancy Resource Center) this morning and found out that a sweet client that I met with 3 weeks ago decided to have an abortion 2 days ago. When I did her ultrasound 3 weeks ago, that little one was 8 weeks, had a strong heartbeat and was moving around. The pictures below show what a 12 week baby looks like – the same age her baby was when it was aborted on Wednesday. I am hurting so much for her and grieving this little one. Please pray for her.”

ultrasound pictures

These pictures show a baby in the womb at 12 weeks.  As is scientifically known and as we can also physically see, this is not a blob of tissue or a group of cells, this is a fully developing baby complete with fingers and toes.

I remember the first time I saw the ultrasound of my first born son, Joseph, at 12 weeks.  The reality of how developed and alive he was in the womb flooded my heart with a mixture of joy and sorrow.  Joy at seeing him jump and move in the womb and sorrow at the reality of the choice I made to end a life at 11 weeks of age nine years earlier.  There is nothing more sobering than seeing.

How anyone could deny these are living human beings is beyond comprehension for me.  I don’t condemn this young girl she is referring to above, I once was her.  Instead, my heart is grieved for her and for her child.

One of the missions of Deeper Still is to advance the cause for life.  We want to see those who have been wounded by abortion set free and healed.  Yes and amen.  Deeper Still is a post-abortion healing ministry and pro-life.  Post-abortion healing ministries are in the fight for life.  Our mission is simple and our objective is clear.  Our mission:  Healing and lasting freedom for those wounded by abortion.  Objective:  To rise up an army of women and men who are free to be a voice and stand for truth, to tell the world the truth about abortion, to dispel the lies of the enemy and defuse the declaration of darkness.   If women and men are not free to speak, silence by default becomes an ally to the enemy’s tactics to steal, kill and destroy.

I pray those in the pro-life community would embrace and advance post-abortion healing ministry and see it as a potent weapon in the arsenal of justice and truth.

out to sea H2E

If you are pro-life and have a heart for seeing abortion defeated in this nation, there is a worship and prayer opportunity this Saturday, August 26th, in Maryville, TN at Foothills Church.  It is an all-day event, from 8am until 6pm.  You are welcome to just stay for a little while or all day if you’d like!  It is totally open to all who want to come pray.   There will also be live streaming of the event for those who live out of town but would like to stand with us in prayer for our nation and the world in seeing the captives set free and abortion end.  You can go to our Facebook page Deeper Still on Saturday to find the link to live streaming.  Will you please stand with us to pray to end abortion?  We need you.

Worthy of Healing

Free from and to something

 

“Son, be of good cheer; your sins are forgiven you.” Matthew 9:2b

Father, thank you that you forgive our sins.  Thank you that you are not a God who gives retribution for our sins.  Rather you come with mercy, grace and outstretched arms ready and willing to not only forgive, but also heal and set us on the path of an abundant life full of purpose.  Father, I pray for those with abortion wounded hearts to receive your forgiveness, healing, and then they would stand and walk in the fullness of life and purpose in Your Kingdom.  In Jesus’ Name, Amen. 

In Matthew Chapter  9, we find a man who was paralyzed.  When Jesus walked by him, He surprisingly said to the man, “Son, be of good cheer; your sins are forgiven you.”

Jesus knew the thoughts and desires of this man’s heart.  I have wondered before why Jesus didn’t first heal the man.  He was paralyzed.  Surely the man wanted to walk more than anything.  And I’ve heard sermons in the past that have stated that Jesus forgave the sins of the man to make a point to the Pharisees present.  Our God is a great multi-tasker, so proving a point to the Pharisees and religious leaders was probably an added benefit no doubt.  However, I believe Jesus, in telling this man his sins were forgiven, gave this man the deepest desire of his heart.

Culturally, it was common in the Bible times for people to assume an illness or affliction was a consequence of a sin.  This man possibly had been carrying the burden that he must have sinned in a horrific way to be cursed with this paralyzing disease.  I can visualize this man lying on his bed day after day in agony, crying out, asking for forgiveness, tormented that he must not be worthy of forgiveness, that his sins were too great.

Then Jesus.

Then Jesus walks by and says the words this man has been waiting perhaps years to hear—You are forgiven.  And then, Jesus said, “Arise, take up your bed, and go to your house.”

It is significant that Jesus first said His sins are forgiven.  It is possible this man needed to know His sins were forgiven in order to receive the healing Jesus wanted to give him.  If Jesus would have just walked by and said, “Arise and walk,” but the man didn’t believe his sins were forgiven, feelings of unworthiness could have hindered healing.

We see this paradox play out regularly with those with abortion wounds.  Forgiveness and healing are not the same.  Many times men and women with abortion-wounded hearts will not feel worthy of healing because they do not truly believe they are forgiven.  Negative situations in life or fear of retribution hang overhead like a cloud in a Peanut cartoon.  Or a person with an abortion wound may self-sabotage blessings due to not truly believing they deserve life more abundantly.

But Jesus walks by and says, “Be of good cheer; your sins are forgiven you.”  But that’s not all.  Like a trusty infomercial, He says, “Wait, there’s more!”  Not only are your sins forgiven you, but also You can now walk!  He says, “Arise, take up your bed and go.”

He has a good plan to for you.  He has a purpose for you to pursue.

“God doesn’t just free you from something, but also to something.” –Karen Ellison

This kind of love is beyond compare and comprehension. His mercy and grace are unmeasurable.  He has a good plan for you.  Receive forgiveness, then arise, stand and walk in the fullness of all God has for you.

Author:  Sue Molitor, Deeper Still Team Member