January 13, 2007

Locked in a room with a naked demonized man...

On the recent trip that DJ has already written about, one day I accompanied three other brothers on a prearranged visit to a nearby village to pray for two demonized individuals.

In the first home, we were led to a room where a young Muslim man was kept. When we entered the young man was very still, and looked very serious. Then he began to speak rapidly and agitatedly, but his speech made no sense. We asked him (by way of translation) if he wanted us to pray for his condition, and he understood us enough to say "yes". So one brother (JM) put his hands on the young man’s head and just began to wait on God to show him what the problem was; he received a word of knowledge that a spirit of insanity had entered the young man while he was yet a child, through a wound of rejection. JM then began to pray, commanding this spirit to leave the young man. At one point JM said “I feel something like a poison entering my hand and going up my arm”. Before this could be translated into the young man’s language, the young man said excitedly “I can feel a poison leaving my head!” This was a physical confirmation of something occurring in the spiritual realm. When JM felt that the spirit was gone, he prayed a second time for the young man, cutting off any further access of this spirit to other members of the family. Then, JM prophesied a positive destiny over the young man, declaring that he would live a good, long life. By this point the young man was smiling and speaking normally. We felt that this mission had been accomplished!

We then went next door to another home, where we were led into a small room with a heavy metal door. The door had a small window through which food was passed. When we entered the room, the door was locked behind us with a thud!. Inside was a man, perhaps 35 years old, completely naked. There was a mattress in the room, and a thin blanket, and in the corner there was a squat toilet. We’d been told that he’d been locked up in this room for 25 years already, because at times he’d go into violent rages; during one, he’d injured his sister so severely that she had to be hospitalized for 7 months. The man did not speak to us when we entered; in fact, he curled up under his blanket, not even looking at us. He could not give us his consent, but we prayed anyway because his family had invited us to do so. This time JM had another brother (K) lay hands on the man’s head as we prayed. After a few minutes, K felt something coming into his arm - another confirmation that the spirit was leaving! We continued to pray for a while longer. At the end, the man seemed slightly calmer, though he ran out of the door into another room as soon as the door was opened. His sister helped him back into the room, and the door was re-locked as we left. We feel that something was set into motion, but the man was not yet “clothed and in his right mind” as we left him in his locked room.

I wept with joy at being able to represent the Kingdom to these two individuals in this remote little village. It was so beautiful – I didn’t know we as Christians could do some of these things! But how many others are locked away like this, a family’s shameful secret?

Even a withered hand can grow!

On the recent trip that DJ has already written about, in one meeting, after I’d finished praying for some people, I wandered over to see what another brother (JM) was doing. He was in the middle of praying for a young Muslim man with a withered, shriveled arm and a claw-like hand. The arm had just hung limply before. I had missed the first part of the miracle, but before my eyes the arm was growing fuller until it was the same thickness of the normal hand – in other words, bone and muscle were being created in real time! Soon the man was able to stretch out his hand and move his fingers, something he had not been able to do previously. All the while JM kept stroking the arm gently, thanking God for what He was doing, and saying to the young man things like "There! Did you feel that?". The man receiving the miracle was beside himself with excitement – he was smiling and trying out his new arm like a child with a new present!

No longer a spectator

On the recent trip that DJ has already written about, I feel that I was lifted up to a whole new level of my experience in God. I had been afraid to go, because I felt so inadequate in my giftings and because I was afraid I’d “fail”, yet at the same time I was drawn because I was so desperate to start seeing more of the supernatural in my own life. I thought that I’d go along as a spectator, but God had much more on His mind! To His glory, I saw and experienced things for the first time, including:

Along with another brother, I was invited to pray for a young man with terminal cancer. He had huge tumors on his neck. It was an intimidating place to be, but I felt great boldness that refused to be intimidated by this disease. I experienced the Lord giving me prophetic words for him, even praying that he’d live to see his grandchildren. The man was experiencing “heat” in his neck as we prayed! We believe that something was set into motion that day.

At one point, I was receiving prayer from a person who said that “at this very time your wife is also receiving a touch from God.” I checked my watch: it was 10 PM, local time. My wife was in a far away country (10 time zones away), so it would have been noon where she was. Days later, when I rejoined her, I asked her what was happening at noon on January 2; she replied that she had been in a time of prayer with a friend in which she had an experience of being taken into a very throne room of God!

I prayed for a woman with pain in her knee and leg. There was some relief, but not as much as she wanted. Others of our team also ministered to her. We challenged her to contend for a healing – meaning that she needed to claim it even if the evidence temporarily indicated otherwise, to defy the Enemy’s attempts to keep her from receiving it.

I prayed for a woman with pain in her neck; the pain disappeared.

I prayed for a man with pain in his leg; the pain disappeared.

I prayed for a man with one leg shorter than the other; he experienced “tingling” in the short leg, though we did not immediately see anything change.

I prayed for a woman who had pain in her back; the pain disappeared.

A woman came to me for the interpretation of a dream, and I believe the Lord gave me wisdom for this. She said my interpretation resonated with what she felt the dream meant.

A woman asked me for a word from the Lord. I started by sharing some general truths, then some fairly specific thoughts started to come to me. At the end, she said that these things were in agreement with other words that she’d received previously.

But there were others for whom I prayed yet “nothing” seemed to happen in the natural. When it comes to this type of ministry, “results may vary”! Nevertheless I will still continue to pray for anyone and everyone who wants prayer.

January 11, 2007

God gets Muslims' attention

Isaac of Ninevah already wrote a bit about this, but I wanted to add my two cents.

The other night the Lord led us to a specific place. A couple of Palestinian Muslim men worked there. While we were talking to them, I got a word of knowledge for a 'left knee'. There were two Muslim women customers in the shop - I asked them if the mother had a problem with her that knee. Surprised a bit, she acknowledged that she did. I gave her a quick teaching about the Kingdom of God and how God speaks to and uses Christians to minister healing. I gave her my wife's phone number. I told her that Isaac was a "seer" and sort of put him on the spot, by asking if he had a word for her. The Lord showed him that she was burdened about something and that it was related to some kind of problem with her son. It turned out to be the absolute word of the Lord. She is from Egypt and her son has major physical problems - I got the impression he wasn't sane. We now had her undivided attention. I got my Egyptian Christian friend on the phone to further talk with her (thank God for mobile phones!). The story of this woman continues today as my wife is meeting with her this morning to pray for the knee and also to see what God would want to say to this woman prophetically.

As we spoke with the Palestinian employees (after the woman left), they were now quite interested in hearing more about what they had just 'seen'. I then got a word of knowledge for a shoulder problem and one of them said it was for him. After praying, he told us that he was healed. While praying, the Lord gave me a few prophetic words for the man - which he said were accurate.

Next we turned to the other man who needed a miracle in his body but hadn't told us what it was. Isaac and another were trying to get words of knowledge for the man and nothing seemed to fit until they got the word "left knee". That was the word that the woman had responded to, but in reality, it was not just for her but for him too - probably more so than for her! He hadn't 'claimed it' so-to-speak at the time because all of our attention had shifted to the woman.

To make a long story short, this man has a very serious condition called thrombosis in his left leg. It started in in the knee and has pretty much taken over the lower part of his leg. It looks like a complete mess. Thankfully there is NO THROMBOSIS IN HEAVEN and we are going to minister to this man in the next day or two. May God's Kingdom be manifested in healing and the salvation of our new friend.

What a difference a day makes!

On one morning, while returning to the hotel from coffee, two young Muslim men began to speak with me and ask me if I had read the Qur'an and if I knew about Islam. I pulled an Arabic New Testament from my coat pocket (just 'happened' to have one:). I said to them boldly, "If you read this book, you will NEVER read the Qur'an again". We exchanged email addresses and I assured this young man that I would send him the Arabic Gospels via email.

The next morning I was walking in the same place back to the hotel after coffee. This time one of the men (the one I exchanged emails with) is alone and walks up beside me. I greeted him and told him that I would be sure to send him what I had promised when I returned to the country we live in. So what does he say? "I want to enter your religion"!!

Day 1 - read the Qur'an/learn about Islam
Day 2 - I want to become a Christian

What happened in that 24-hour period? At this point, I have NO IDEA. I intend to find out. I have a hunch it had something to do with our 'invisible' partner - the Holy Spirit. What a difference a day makes!!!!!!

January 10, 2007

The Lord says, “You are a Princess!"

In a meeting we had where people brought their friends who were in need of healing, I saw a woman, who I assumed was a Muslim due to the way she was dressed. We were standing in the front ministering prophetically to the group, and I when I saw this woman the word in Arabic for “Princess” came into my mind. I just felt like the Lord wanted to give this woman a word and so I called her out and began to prophesy how the Lord said that she was a princess who had complete access to the King’s palace, that she was a beloved daughter and that she could enter the King’s presence at any time because she was an heiress with an inheritance that included every spiritual blessing in the heavenlies. As I was speaking, she began to cry continued to cry more and more as I gave the word. I could tell it was a "good cry" so I felt right about continuing.

I knew nothing of her background, but I later discovered that she was a new believer. From the way she was dressed, I had ‘assumed’ she was a Muslim but my prophecy to her was “as if she was a believer”. It was so encouraging to later learn that this was exactly who she was and what she needed to hear.

‘Show and tell’ ministry – or should we call it ‘tell and show’

I had the privilege last week of meeting with a number of local believers who have all left Islam to follow Jesus. Because of the supernatural things we are learning and experiencing both personally and in our ministry to Muslims, each time I would meet with them I was asked to spend some time teaching them and sharing with them about the power of the Holy Spirit and the miraculous.

On one occasion, a Christian couple was brought to me – both of whom are discipling 8-10 other Muslim-background believers in Jesus. The man had brought his father with him, who was still a Muslim but needed healing in his right knee. He came in with a cane and his knee was abnormally large. After I told them stories about God healing people and bringing Muslims to Christ in different Arab countries, I began to pray for the father’s healing. At that time, I saw no indication that he had been healed – but not all healings are instantaneous. The next day we received a phone call that the man was “dancing around his house” completely healed.

In another city, a new believer was brought to me who wanted to move in healing. I told him I would pray for him that God would release the Gift of the Word of Knowledge. I shared with him how I received this gift and how the Lord speaks to me through it and subsequently brings physical healing to people. He was very interested – and hungry for God to use him in this way. As I am sitting there, the Lord gives me a word of knowledge for a right wrist problem – he then pulled up his sleeve to show me a massive ganglion cyst that was very painful. I prayed for him and although it took two times, all pain left his wrist. Next I got a word for his left shoulder – which was also a problem. Again it took two times of prayer, but we saw the healing miracle and all pain left his body.

In both instances, I was not only able to “tell” these believers about some of the ways God releases gifts of the Spirit and brings healing, but then I was privileged to “show” (or demonstrate) exactly what we had been talking about. May they truly go and do likewise. Also, two other principles were modeled/taught – in the case of the father, it was a delayed healing which manifested the following day. Secondly, I modeled to the other believer that we don’t always see the healing come after praying only once.

I didn’t know we could do that!

Recently on a trip to a poor neighboring country we had opportunity after opportunity to pray for the sick and minister prophetically. A medical doctor who serves the poorest of the poor, took us to the neighborhood where these people live. The place is rampant with sickness – people die from simple diseases that are easily treatable.

On our way into the neighborhood I got a word of knowledge for a back problem. We approached two Muslim men and one of them had the problem I described. We laid hands upon him and all the pain left his body. He had another problem in a different part of his back – we prayed for that and the Lord touched that problem too.

I got another word for a finger problem and by this time a group of children had gathered around us. One of them came forward and we prayed for him. He was healed. We ended up praying for three other children with hand and finger problems and the Lord healed all of them.

We then were taken to a man’s home to pray for his wife who was very sick. We initially didn’t seem to get very far praying for healing and then one of the team said to me, “she really needs some kind of a major lift”. At that point, I had an idea. I would pray for her to see a vision. I asked this Muslim woman to close her eyes and then I grabbed her hand (which is culturally unacceptable – but we were desperate!). I began to just pray and release the Kingdom into this woman and asked the Lord to open up for her a vision or some other kind of supernatural experience – little did we know what the Lord was going to do. As I prayed, the Spirit of the Lord came upon her and she was clearly having some kind of major spiritual encounter.

Afterwards she told us that someone appeared to her in a vision – she didn’t know who it was, but our guess is that it was the Lord Himself. Next, she said that the Spirit of God came and opened up her chest (actually she said that it was ‘torn/ripped’ open) and then He filled her completely. She couldn’t open her eyes for a long time. In the wake of this experience, she was a completely different person.

We did the same for two other women and one man – in all the cases, the Spirit of God came powerfully upon these Muslims and healed their bodies and gave them special encounters with Himself. One felt like electricity was flowing through her body. We also gave them prophetic words.

The doctor afterwards said that he really had a lot to think about in terms of what he saw as we ministered to these people – he said, “I didn’t know we could do that!”. Honestly, nor did we. Who knows what God will do when Spirit-filled believers get their hands on unbelievers and ask the Kingdom to come! Try it out – you will definitely be surprised.

I FINALLY got a hit! (Deaf ear submits to the Kingdom)

I had to use this baseball expression because hitters get into slumps – so do those who pray for healing. It has been a loooooong time since I personally saw a deaf ear open. I don’t even want to tell you when it was. Some of you remember reading the blog post – “An Apology to My Muslim friend who wasn’t healed”. He was deaf and we didn’t see the miracle. A few weeks ago on a ministry trip to a neighboring country, I “thought” I got a hit. A young man who was both deaf and mute (since birth) claimed that his ears opened. I asked a pastor friend to get verification and it turns out that he wasn’t healed. Don’t know what happened there.

This past week I finally got a hit! An Indian man who was (emphasis on “was”) deaf in his right ear since birth, was healed after I prayed for him. He felt heat in the ear and testified that he could hear for the first time ever from that ear. I FINALLY came out of my “deaf ear opening” hitting slump and am 1 or 1 in 2007! Guess who I am trying to see ASAP? My deaf Muslim friend who I wrote the apology letter for of course! I want to share the testimony of what happened and go after his deaf ears again. Ultimately I want to be able to “retract” the apology!!!

I don’t know if any of you have heard about Heidi Baker, but she has had an incredible “deaf ear opening” hitting streak wherein she was seeing EVERY deaf person she prayed for in the 2nd half of 2006 healed. Sounds incredible, but then again that is the way Jesus lived. Her example has kept me going – encouraging me to keep swinging at deaf ears.

We must continue to stand upon God’s Word – without watering it down, explaining it away or somehow theologizing why we can’t/shouldn’t expect to see Biblical results in through our own lives when it comes to the miraculous – Jesus told the Disciples to John the Baptist to tell him that “the deaf hear”. Let’s just be old-fashioned fundamentalists about this verse – God said it, I believe it, that settles it!

We’ve got to keep swinging. We probably will get into slumps, but if we keep swinging eventually we’ll “get a hold of one”.

January 08, 2007

Living the Life Together

As our custom on Monday nights, we got together and asked the Lord what He wanted to do that night. We all have set aside this night specifically to destroy the works of the devil. So, after some worship, we compared words and one of us, "Firewood," said that the Lord gave him a picture of a plow breaking new ground and an area of town. I said that the Lord had shown me a restaurant with a certain name and a fountain. Firewood answered, "Yeah, there's a restaurant by that name in the area of town that the Lord showed me and it also has a fountain." He also said that he saw an image of someone who was really swollen. We headed out.
Once at the restaurant and seated between two fountains, we were informed by the wait staff that there was minimum amount one had to pay to eat there. We just wanted snacks, so we thanked them and headed to a coffee and nut dealer a stone's throw (or should I say a nut's throw?) from the restaurant's front door. DJ had just been inside and thought that there was something going on.
Inside the coffee and nut place, we ran into some other customers. DJ had some physical words for some of them and though they were on, they were reluctant to really pursue anything. We started praying for some more things, and I felt the impression that one of the older ladies' son had a problem that weighed heavily upon her. When asked, she confirmed that this was true and that he had some severe problems. We then had her communicate with a friend from her country where her son still lives to arrange someone to go pray for him.
After the other customers left, we got down to business with the staff. The cashier had a physical problem, but didn't want to tell us about it. He wanted to see if we would get it without him telling us. The other worker, by the word of knowledge received healing in his arm, but I'll let DJ write more about his healing and some of the prophetic words that he got for him. I wasn't getting much for the cashier except "writer." He confirmed that he wanted to be a journalist, but not a lot came from that thread. I also tried to land a few guesses at this physical problem, but missed two of them. Finally, I said, "left knee." He responded, "exactly." I thought, "about time." (As a side note here, it is perhaps helpful to point out that not every revelation from the Lord is accompanied by peals of thunder and lightning. Oftentimes that still, small voice is a thought that drops into your head.) As it turns out, this guy has thrombosis in his leg that makes it really swollen from the knee down (the swollen image Firewood saw). We told him some stories about some miracles to increase his faith, sat him down, and started praying for him. Halfway through the prayer, he said that he felt a little tingling. Always a good sign. Nonetheless, we didn't see the whole healing, but we are waiting for his phone call.
After the posse disbanded and I headed home, I stopped at a grocery to get some milk. Keep in mind that it is now very late at night-- around midnight. On my way back to my house, I saw this guy being pushed in a wheelchair in my headlights. I didn't have a word of knowledge, other than the visible one, nor did (do) I have much faith for seeing people getting out of wheelchairs as it is I have never personally experienced it (though, one could argue that there is always a first.) So, I did the next best thing. I pulled over, greeted them and . . .

gave him DJ's mobile number.

A Season of Miracles

In the coming days, I will be posting stories of miracles that we saw on a trip to one of the poorest Arab Muslim countries. We spent a week ministering many of God's special servants there - mean and women who have truly forsaken all to live in one of the most challenging nations on earth. Why do they live there? To bring the Gospel to a nation where the light of the Gospel into a very dark Islamic place. We also got to minister to many Arab Muslim men and women - we saw miracles of healing in their midst, we saw demons leave, we prophesied over them and saw the Holy Spirit come upon a number in other manifestations of power - maybe the most thrilling thing of all was for my wife to see a young 13 year-old Muslim girl give her life to Jesus with her Muslim father sitting with her in full approval. Her story is amazing because of the dreams God sent her to prepare the way - more on that in the coming posts.

For me personally, the most special thing of all was to meet with a number of Muslims who have become Christians. I got to hear their stories and to see the light of God in their eyes as they were hungry to bring their own people to Christ. They wanted to learn about miracles and what humbled me completely is that they were hungry and interested to listen to me and by God's grace even learn from me. I maintain that in the School of the Spirit we might be in Kindergarten (having graduated from pre-school:). What did I personally have to offer these new Arab Christians who have already given far more in sacrifice to the Lord than I have ever given (and most likely ever will).

I will say this - the stories and testimonies you are about to read are TRUE. The names and locations have been changed to protect the people involved. We were there - this is what we witnessed with our own eyes. Other than that - my encouragement to anyone reading them is to TRY THEM AT HOME. Don't settle for reading my/our stories - make them your own. Let the prophetic testimonies re-create in your own context what has happened in this nation. Contend for more - contend for the what the Bible calls "fullness". I have no idea what that term means, but I'll tell you what, what I saw this past week was far more 'fullness' than I have seen in a while. Peace.