Mar 31, 2015

Why You Shouldn't Visit Me to Be Healed

PHX Airport
I occasionally receive requests from people who either want me to travel so I can pray for them to be healed, or who ask if they can travel to see me to receive prayer. While some people have a list of reasons why you should let them take a crack at getting you healed, I'd like to tell you why I'm not that person. In order to illustrate a problem some of us are wrestling with I'd like to share an exchange typical of the ones I have with someone who needs healing:

Them: Is it possible I could come to your place and get healed? I'm really suffering.

Me: Where do you live?

Them: Canada.

Me: I need to ask you a question and I need an honest answer: How would you feel if you came to Phoenix and I prayed for you and you were not healed?

Them: Honestly, I'd be disappointed, but it doesn't matter. Many people have prayed for me and I haven't been healed.  I know that Jesus will heal me, so I'll keep looking for the right person.

I don't want to seem insensitive to the suffering of others. I feel deeply for anyone who suffers. I also don't want to play the "You don't have enough faith" card, because the problem we're dealing with has nothing to do with having enough faith. The simple fact is that people like me can't travel all over the world to pray for the sick, and it seems like a waste of money for the sick to have to travel the world in search of healing.

In the majority of cases where someone desires to receive something from God and they haven't received it, (including things as diverse as dreams, the gift of tongues, or healing) the problem is actually one of how we view God and how we view ourselves. Let's use the gift of tongues as an example:

Many people aren't speaking in tongues because they believe that God is the one who controls the process. They believe that if they're going to speak in tongues, God will take over their body and make it happen. If you believe God is the one in control of the process, it gives you no reason to try speaking in tongues yourself. The truth is that God does not take over your body and force you to speak in tongues. You are the one in control of the process. All He does is inspire the things you say. So many believers are a stalemate; they're waiting for God to do something that they must do themselves.

This wrong view of God prevents people from having what they desire. In a similar way, many people have not been healed because of wrong views they have about God, themselves or the healing process.

Some of us see healing as something like opening a combination lock. We might believe in healing and we may even believe God wants us to be healed. So far, so good. The problem (or so we think) is finding the right combination, and with healing, it seems to be a matter of visiting as many people as you can until you get the right person to lay hands on you. Many of us embrace this model of healing because we've heard of people who have been healed after having hundreds of people pray for them. Such stories make us think healing is a game of numbers. You just need to play the game long enough and receive prayer from enough people until you hit the jackpot.

What we fail to consider is that in most of the cases where someone was healed after receiving prayer from hundreds of people, something was uncovered in the final prayer session that was unrecognized, and once it was exposed, the person received their healing. It isn't a matter of finding the person with the right anointing as much as it is discerning the root of a problem and removing it. (Go here for an example.)

I usually tell people that if they've received prayer from many believers and they haven't been healed, the chances of me getting them healed are rather slim. It's likely they're going to spend a lot of money buying a ticket to visit me and be disappointed when they aren't healed.

Failed healing can be due to a number of reasons. Success in healing difficult cases is generally a matter of finding out what's preventing people from receiving their healing and removing it. For most of us, finding the right combination is a matter of making ourselves just as able to receive healing as God is to give it.

And this is where things get interesting...

Unless you're willing to investigate the possibility that your healing is being blocked by something like emotional trauma or a mental stronghold involving your thinking (or any number of other things) you're probably not going to be healed no matter how many anointed men of God pray for you. In these cases, it's not a matter of anointing. It's a mater of getting to the root of an issue the enemy is exploiting, bringing it into the light and letting Jesus deal with it. Most of the time, the problem is that we're believing a lie that is empower the enemy. These lies are nearly always things we believe about ourselves, about others or about God.

We tend to think that because we have the Holy Spirit in us, we're less prone to believing lies than non-Christians, but the truth is that because we listen to more teaching about God (some of which is true and some of which isn't) we're more likely to have wrong ideas about Him than non-believers by virtue of the fact we're exposed to more theology. It's surprising how many lies Christians believe about God and about themselves. The good news is that once the lies we believe are exposed and removed and the truth is allowed to take their place, we can receive healing just as easily as anyone.

Here's one last reason why you shouldn't visit me to be healed:

It isn't my calling to heal all the sick and injured people I encounter. While I love seeing people healed, and watching the power of God at work, and I rejoice every time a demon is made homeless, my main calling is not healing the sick, but training people to heal the sick.

This calling involves writing blog posts and books and connecting with the few people I come across who are passionate about healing and miracles. If I had to choose between seeing 100 people a day healed through my prayers or seeing 5 people a day trained in healing, I'd spend my time training. Those 5 people, once they're trained, are going to heal thousands and some of the people they minister to will learn to heal as well. While it's good for me to spend time healing the sick, it's better for me to develop materials that train and equip the saints for ministry. That is my real calling and it's the main reason why I seldom travel or pray for people in person upon request.

So before you buy a ticket to Phoenix, why not spend a little time with doctor Jesus and ask Him what lies you believe about yourself or about Him? Let Him reveal the lies and ask Him to show you the truth. Believe what He tells you and ask Him to heal your body and soul. Then send me your testimony. And maybe when we meet it will be to celebrate your victory.

For more information on healing, check out my book Divine Healing Made Simple.

Mar 14, 2015

I Am Your Tower - Rob Coscia

Photoby Adam Schallau
Photo by Adam Schallau
My guest blogger today is Rob Coscia.

I had a dream a few nights ago in which Jesus took me to a stone tower, somewhere between a city and the edge of a desert. We climbed the stairs about 50 feet to the top windows. I could see miles farther than I imagined. The wilderness was beautiful, from mountains and mesas to canyons and rivers, and was dotted with gorgeous oases. From this window, I could see most of the roads connecting them. He asked me, "What is a tower for?"
I thought about it a moment and said, "Historically (yeah, I used the word 'historically' talking to God in a dream- I know, I'm such a nerd), a tower has been used to watch for the enemy."

He didn't speak, but part of a scripture popped in my head. "You are my strong tower. You are my rock." I looked at Him.

"This tower is Me. It is a manifestation of My presence in your life. Every stone represents a time in your life in which I demonstrated My love, grace, and glory to you." As soon as He said that, I could see it. I also knew that the tower was continually being built up, stronger and taller.

Then He said, "You have been taught that intercession and prayer are a watchtower in which you must keep a constant lookout for the enemy. You have built your own towers to guard yourself against all that you believe will hurt you." I nodded. "This is My tower. It is the only one you need. My people are more concerned with what the enemy is doing than what I am doing. Like Elisha's servant, they are panicked at the weak forces of the enemy, instead of living in My glory that surrounds them. This must change." The truth of that crushed me.
"Look out this window. What do you see?" He pointed to an area far away. At first I saw nothing. But as I stared, the image came closer into view, like a telescopic lens. There was a young family I did not recognize, struggling to walk down an old path. The parents were each carrying a child. They were exhausted, hungry, and thirsty. I looked at Jesus.
"What else do you see?" I could see that they were very near an oasis, a gorgeous one with clear water and fruit on the trees. But there was a hill blocking their view, and they were heading away from it.

"What do I do?"

"Intercede." At first I had no idea what to say, but another scripture popped in my head. "Every mountain and hill shall be made low. The crooked places shall be made straight, and the rough places smooth."

"Lord, I agree with that scripture." I put my hands on the stone of the window sill and leaned out. I could feel His love for this family, and His joy at what was about to happen. "I pray that the hills around them shall be brought down."

There were streaks of light in the sky, which I assumed to be angels rather than lightning. They flew to the family, and a moment later there was a small earthquake. I could see panic on their faces, but they were completely shielded from harm. When it was over, the hill blocking their vision was gone. They could see the oasis, and headed straight for it.
I looked at Jesus. He was smiling at the family as they reached the desert garden. "Lord, what is this place? Where are we?"

"Don't you know? Look again."

When He said that, I could see. The revelation took my breath away. When I began treatment for cancer, I had a dream of being in the "valley of the shadow of death". It was dark, stormy, red with fiery mountains and very scary. In that dream, Jesus came to me as I sat on the ground weeping. He reached out His hand, and smiled at me as He lifted me up. I had that dream repeatedly, and would see it in my mind when I was awake. We walked together every day. He led me through every dark place until I was healed. He still walks with me like that. As I looked around at the hills and paths, I realized that this tower was on the spot He first lifted me up. But it was so different. It was wilderness, but it was beautiful, alive.

Knowing my thoughts, He said, "Wherever you walk with Me, that place is transformed. That is what you get to do. My people get to walk with Me through the darkest places and change them, to occupy them with My love, joy, peace, goodness, kindness, generosity, power, grace, and glory. They get to see Me every day. They get to look out at what I am doing and join me in it. That is what will transform this world, and them.

"You are my lovingkindness and my fortress, my high tower and my deliverer, my shield and the One in who I take refuge." (Psalm 144)

"From the end of the earth I will cry to You. When my heart is overwhelmed, lead me to the rock that is higher than I. For You have been a shelter for me, a strong tower from the enemy. I will abide in Your tabernacle forever! I will trust in the shelter of Your wings." (Psalm 61)

Mar 7, 2015

Jesus Teaches Me to Relax While Healing the Sick - Ken Nichols

My guest blogger today is Ken Nichols. If you read my book Divine Healing Made Simple, you may remember Ken's dream where Jesus instructed him about His will for healing. This is Ken's story about another encounter with Jesus.

In a dream, the morning of 1/29/15, what I recall was that Jesus and an Angel were teaching and encouraging me in healing the sick. All three of us were standing in an area with lots of green trees and bushes around us. It seemed we had been walking along a path, but at this moment, we all paused so that they could share a point with me before walking on again. They seemed very much in a fun, light-hearted, smiling, manner (almost chuckling as they looked at each other and then back at me) telling me to just have fun while I am here. Their primary point to get across to me was the emphasis on persistence.
"Do you believe it is really My will to heal, ALWAYS?"

"Yes," I said.

"Then just keep going until you get results with each one".

"I know it's Your will always, but what I don't know is if I am in a place to get those results each time, like something is wrong with me, because at times it seems nothing is happening at all. "

Jesus replied, "Well, you are a new creation in Me, all things have passed away and all things have become new and all things are of God, and We don't make defective and broken children. There is nothing wrong with you. A carpenter doesn't hit a nail one time and if it doesn't go all the way in, he throws away his hammer thinking it defective or doesn't think his nails are good enough. He hits it again, and again UNTIL it is all the way in. They know if they hit it over and over, eventually it will go in. Builders use many types of fasteners: screws, nails, rivets, bolts. If they want to remove a rivet, they can't use a wrench or claw hammer. They need to use the right tools to remove whichever item they are working with. Depending on what the person has going on with them, an injury involving simply damaged or dead tissue, a sickness or disease caused by an infection, or body chemistry out of balance, a missing body part, a spirit of some category; you have been given tools which are appropriate for and able to remove any of these condition and bring the healing. Remember how you have been told that it is the glory of God to conceal a matter, and the glory of kings to discover and search out a matter? You have heard it said that these things are hidden for you, not from you. So use your toolbox, of power, authority, gifts of the Spirit such as the word of knowledge, to know what is going on and what to do, and other gifts. Declarations of faith, and all of these working by love, and find which tool is the best fit to remove the problem you are facing. The more serious you get and harder you concentrate, the more it becomes your works, instead of just having fun, relaxing and placing your faith and confidence in My works. If one thing doesn't work, try something else, but always be listening as we may give you clues or guidance that will help you discover the answer. But it's no fun at all if you give up or quit after only trying a short time. Sometimes you may come across a suborn nail or a screw with a stripped out head and you'll have to be ready to do something outside the box. I sent people to wash mud from their eyes. Sometimes I had to deal with a spirit of infirmity first, sometimes I just told them to do something, so don't make it a formula, just do what you know and then if it becomes a challenge, have fun and explore and listen for clues and directions, kind of like the 'Hotter or colder' game you used to play when finding a hidden item." He took hold of my shoulder and rocked me back and forth saying, "You're so tense. Relax and have fun. So many have forgotten how to have fun. It really is easier than most make it. If it seems hard, then you're doing something wrong. Does this help?"

"Yes, it does," I said.