Feb 1, 2011
Jan 29, 2011
Wrapping My Head Around This:
Before I was able to make the shift in my thinking, I prayed for the sick with little if any real demonstration of power. But, now, when I pray for the sick, God’s power shows up and the results are dramatic! It’s only been nine months, really, since I started engaging in this relational mind-set, and I’ve seen some amazing miracles done in the Name of Jesus. I will mention some of them:
(1) I prayed for a friend who lives in AZ, over the phone, for a tumor on her leg which was scheduled for surgical removal. It disappeared as I was praying. When she went for the scheduled surgery, the doctor said that it was gone, and cancelled the surgery.
(2) Prayed for a woman in a wheelchair at a church in Poulsbo, WA…she is now walking unattended and taking care of herself.
(3) Healed a man with COPD coming out of a restaurant.
(4) Saw a cancer leave a woman’s lung, like a shadow…doctors said there is no trace of cancer in her lung now.
The point is, anyone can do this. I decided to believe what Jesus has said concerning the Kingdom and its relationship to those who believe that what He said is true. Theological thinking hindered my ability to actually be a doer of the Word instead of one who hears only. I allowed myself to become too preoccupied with the logic and systemization of Scripture to be free to see and live out what Jesus was presenting to us. He presented a Kingdom, based not in a systematized written Word, but, rather, of loving relationship (friendship, really) with the Living Word. I, like the Pharisees of His day, had studied the scriptures intently, but never, really, saw the Christ in them. Now, He is all I see! He is all I care to see, know, and understand…because the more I get to know Him, the more I discover how deeply He loves us all, and the more I become a partaker of the power of the Kingdom.
Being Christian is about a lot more than just being nice people…it’s about walking with Him in the Spirit and Power of an endless life…effecting everything in this world with that power and Kingdom Presence. As Paul said in 1Cor 2:4,5, “My message and my preaching were not with wise and persuasive words, but with a demonstration of the Spirit’s power, so that your faith might not rest on men’s wisdom, but on God’s power.” We, today, have had it all backward…we put the written ahead of the spiritual, when Jesus Himself said that what is written is to lead us to Him. The written is a guidepost for our relating to God and the Kingdom. The Kingdom isn’t about adhering to a set of systematized and principle-ized rules; but, is about loving and walking with the God Who loves us, in the Spirit and Power of His Kingdom, which means that we will be like Jesus was, and do what Jesus did…going about life doing good and demonstrating the power of the Kingdom just as He did. (Mark 16:17,18) That’s what I want! That’s what I am presently endeavoring to do! After tasting of this Kingdom, I can never go back to the way things used to be.
Jan 25, 2011
Is it possible to accidentally heal the wrong body part?
And if you did, how would the patient react?
I was confused, so I asked what she meant.
If you pray for one of your patients and accidentally heal the 'wrong' part, you're not likely to hear a complaint. Patients are generally grateful for anything miraculous.
Jan 22, 2011
After picking up the rental and checking in, we met my family at their house. They had a plan. I have a large family. One of us would stay in Rob's hospital room each night to help with his care. Since I was only staying 2 days, tomorrow would be my turn. We got caught up on what they knew about his condition, then turned in for the night.
I spent most of the next 24 hours at the hospital, the majority of it with Rob. I read his chart. His symptoms began 5 months earlier but he didn't seek medical treatment until it was too late. He had small - cell carcinoma of the prostate with metastasis to the liver and possibly the pancreas and bladder. He also had DIC (disseminated intravascular coagulopathy) which causes both excessive bleeding and abnormal clotting. Rob was in a lot of pain, which they managed well.
I prayed as led by the Spirit for most of the morning and afternoon. I usually close my eyes and God shows me the problems then I pray accordingly. I saw tumors, blood clots, cellular structures, demonic beings, damaged organs and many other things that needed repair. Finally I saw a bright, golden ball of light traveling through his body from his head to his feet. I believe it was the glory of God.
In the evening I prayed against depression, pain and despair. It seemed as if Rob's emotions were under attack. I prayed as led by the Spirit. He woke up once every hour. I asked if he was in pain. He always said 'yes', so the nurse gave him morphine.
When Rob was admitted, one of his doctors asked if he was a Christian. Rob replied that he was an agnostic. During the times he woke up he was too sedated for a real conversation. But he did understand simple commands. I told him I had an important thing for him to do. I said, "Jesus is looking for you. I need you to find him." He said, "OK, I'll look for him."
At 2 in the morning I felt like the warfare was done. Each time I went back to Rob's bedside to pray, I saw nothing to pray into. I began worshiping God and rested in His presence. At 4 am Rob awoke. I asked if he was in pain. He said, 'no'. I asked again and got the same answer. To make sure he understood the question, I asked if he wanted morphine, he said, 'no'. He refused morphine the rest of the day. Somehow his pain was gone
Rob's wife came to see him around 9am. When I told her Rob didn't want morphine, she didn't believe me. Everyone who asked that morning got the same answer. He wasn't in pain. Brothers and sisters came and went. I got lost in the blur of activity. I sensed my mission was done, so I went to the house to meet my wife and the rest of my family.
I gave them a report on what happened overnight (without the details of my prayer time). I was full of faith and confident Rob would be healed. We left for the airport and arrived early. I was exhausted, so I dozed in the terminal, but I slept better on the airplane. During the flight I had another vision.
I saw Rob lying quietly with his eyes closed. As I watched, he slipped into a dark body of water. Then he was gone. My heart sank. I knew what it meant.
The next morning, while at work, I received the phone call I feared. It was my mother. "Rob died a few minutes ago. Ellie is a wreck. Keep her in your prayers."
The Rest of The Story
While discussing Rob's condition with my older brother Richard, I learned something. Rob had already accepted his death long before I got there. "Rob already said his goodbye's. He's OK with dying now. He's ready for whatever comes next."
When the doctors told him there was no treatment and he would die shortly, Rob accepted death without a battle. Most of us have heard stories about soldiers who sustained injuries that were survivable, yet they died because they believed their wounds to be fatal. We also know of soldiers who have been ripped in half and shouldn't have survived, yet they did. Our will to survive is critical in the realm of both medicine and divine healing. It's almost impossible to keep a person alive, once they've decided it's their time to die.
The same day Rob died, (November 9th, 2010) we posted the testimony of a man who was miraculously healed of liver and bladder cancer. That story was set up to post two weeks in advance. When his doctor told him he had an aggressive form of cancer this was his response: "I have a relationship with the greatest healer in the world. He name is Jesus Christ and he will heal me." This man pursued his healing and was miraculously healed a short time later.
While talking with my brother Richard, I also talked with his wife Karen. I heard she'd been hospitalized with blood clots in her leg and asked her to explain it. She's had vascular disease in her lower leg for a long time. "My foot has been ice cold for as long as I can remember. There's almost no circulation. The doctor's aren't sure what to do about it."
I asked if she wanted to be healed. Her eyes lit up. "Yes!" I commanded the blood vessels to be healed and the spirit of sickness to leave. I spent about 10 minutes in all praying over her leg and foot. She didn't feel any immediate evidence of healing, but the next morning her foot was warm. Later in the day she told me her foot was cold again. I explained the nature of the spiritual battle and how the enemy tries to convince us we aren't healed. She smiled with understanding. I put my hands on her leg and commanded it to leave again and told her to do the same thing if it came back in the future. Two weeks after I prayed over her foot, she posted a message on my Facebook page telling me her foot still "feels wonderful".
While I was praying for my brother, my wife had another assignment. She had a friend who was in the other hospital in the same town we were in. Her friend had been hospitalized with problems related to anorexia, something she's battled for 30 years. My wife just happened to arrive at the other hospital at exactly the right time for visitation. She needed a password to be admitted to the mental health ward but didn't have it. One of the employees had mercy on her and allowed her in.
As they talked, my wife asked if she could pray with her friend for healing. As soon as she said this, her right hand began to vibrate with power. She placed her hand on the friend's abdomen. They both felt power going into her body. We've been in touch with her friend several times since then. She seems to have made a lot of progress and has a more confident attitude. She now believes she can win the battle.
I learned a few things from this experience. One is that healing is indeed warfare, whether we see it that way or not. It's warfare on a level most of us can't fathom yet.
On the same day that my brother died of cancer, a different man's healing testimony for the same disease was published. I can't help but think that our response to disease has a major impact on our survival. The Israelites heard two reports about their odds of beating the Caananites. The majority report saw what was possible with man. The minority report saw what was possible with God. Those who believed the bad report paid for it with their lives.
God's plans are not always clearly mapped out. But his promises are availablel to those who will receive them. Someone you expect to be healed may die. Someone you don't expect may be healed. Ask around. You never know who is waiting for the Master's touch.
Finally, I'd like to share my views on the diagnosis and prognosis:
I don't have a problem with doctors giving a patient a diagnosis. That's their job. But it's not their job to predict the future and that's what a prognosis really is. We turn ourselves into prophets; forecasting a patient's demise in a certain time frame. Patients see us as experts. They take our prognosis seriously. When a patient is told there is no hope, that often excludes the miraculous as a possibility. But the miraculous is always possibile. Perhaps the prognosis of "no hope'" ought to be changed to something like, "There is no medical treatment that will cure you, but a miraculous healing is always possible."
We owe it to our patients, friends and family to speak hope, however small it is, into their lives.
Jan 20, 2011
Jan 17, 2011
As was coming out of the bathroom, the mother was on her way out the door and asked the aunt “if she needed the Tylenol,” and expressed that she
had already taken some.
I’m always looking for excuses to pray for people, so I asked them if they were alright. "Oh, it’s just sleeping in the hospital. You know, chairs and that daybed. They give us such pain in our necks and we’ve had headaches all day.”
“Do you mind if I pray for you?” They didn’t mind. I prayed for the mother first, placing my hand on her shoulder, and when I commanded the pain to go, I snapped my fingers. The moment I did that, heat shot into her neck, and the pain lessened. Since God was doing something, I just let God do what he was doing, and prayed for the aunt.
At Holy Spirit’s leading, I commanded a spirit off of her, and the pain lessened slightly. Both women felt a lessening of pain, but it was not all gone. The mother was getting all freaked at this point, and we started talking.
I explained that sometimes people get healed instantly, and sometimes it takes a couple rounds of prayer. They had a couple other questions, which I answered as best as I could, regarding God and healing and such. It turns out they were believers, but had never encountered God as Healer. I told them that Jesus didn’t die so we could get healed halfway, and prayed for them until the pain left entirely (which only took a minute or two).
The mother then asked me, sort of hesitantly, “Do you think it would work for her?” pointing to her daughter lying in the hospital bed.
“Certainly!” I replied. The daughter was upset, verbally told us that she didn’t want prayer, and was adamant about it. Had it been another time and place, I would have started praying for her by commanding spirits to be quiet and to come out of her (as that was, in my opinion, the reason she was so resistant) but it was neither an appropriate time nor place, so I skipped it, although I REALLY wanted to.
I had the mother and aunt lay their hands on her, and had them repeat after me a really simple prayer. I said something like “Jesus died so that we could be healed, so I command healing into this body and cancer to go in Jesus’ name.” We waited for a few moments afterwards, and I then said “That’s how you do that” and encouraged them to continue to pray for her in such a fashion until she was better.
Normally I would have the daughter test out the injury, but since it required a blood test to determine if the cancer was gone, that would have to happen at another time. I hugged them and then left.
While we had been talking, there was one other thing that God was doing, which I had never experienced before. The mother said to me at two different points during that ten minutes we were talking and praying that she felt something happening inside her while she was listening to me talk. I didn’t know what it was at the time, but I figured it out later. While I was talking, God was depositing HOPE into the mother to believe that God could heal her daughter. He might even have been depositing faith, but I KNOW she was receiving an impartation of hope. I believe this was what prompted her to ask if healing prayer would work for her daughter.
When I left, I was thrilled that the women got healed, but what touched me most deeply was the virtue God deposited in her. What had only ten minutes before been a very dark and painful situation became just a little less painful and a ray of hope had just cracked through the clouds. And the whole time, I was still getting paid to do it. ^_^
Jan 15, 2011
I've been asked, "Exactly how do you walk up to a complete stranger in a store and heal them?"
Every person we'll ever do anything with is a stranger to us at one time. Everything we do from the time we meet them is either building or destroying a relationship. If we intend to heal a stranger, at minimum we should probably learn their name. Personally I think we ought to go much further, but it's a start.
You could stand on a sidewalk with a loudspeaker announcing your desire to heal people and command them to be healed from ten feet away. You might even heal some people. I don't know if it would qualify as effective ministry.
It's difficult to receive ministry from a stranger. Most of us want to know something about the one representing God before we give them our time and our ear. When a stranger speaks at a church they're introduced by someone who knows them and their expertise or credentials are presented. It's part of our culture.
A few years ago I met a man whose writing inspired me. I liked the stuff he wrote so much that I began bugging him by e-mail. He was very gracious; patiently answering some of my questions and encouraging me to find the rest of the answers on my own.
One day I wrote something that provoked him. I received an unexpected reply that has provoked me ever since.
This was his reply:
"Some time ago, I had this image of a network of islands in a vast sea, connected by a variety of bridges. The islands are people, and the bridges are the relationships. Some of the islands have many bridges, some just a few, and a few islands have no bridges at all. And the bridges are of all varieties. There are some rickety footbridges, some rope bridges or narrow wooden bridges. Some are just a fallen log. Others are well-made stone bridges, and there are a few modern steel or concrete bridges.
“No man is an island,” or so John Donne says. Nobody is completely self-sufficient. I may produce quite a lot of what I need on my island, but there are some things that I’ll need from others. Besides, if I get by with only what I can make myself, then I subject myself to a very primitive lifestyle: no cars, no cell-phones, no laptops or toilet paper: none of these can be produced without heavy industry.
If I want coffee, I can trade some of the things I make on my island (let’s imagine I’m a carpenter) with someone else for their coffee, but only if I have a bridge. But not just any bridge. I need to have a bridge that I can carry my wood furniture over: the rope bridge won’t do. In fact, the fallen log is out, and many of the narrow wooden bridges. The guy with the coffee can make use of most of the bridges, but my work requires a bigger bridge. The stonemason on the next island over needs really strong bridges.
I heard Rick Joyner say one time that when God sends him somewhere to minister, he’s always interested to see how they receive him. If they recognize him as a pastor or ministry leader, then there’s a certain amount of ministry he can bring. If they receive him as an author and a teacher, then there’s more he can bring. If they can accept him as a prophet, still more, and if they welcome him as an apostle, then he can bring the entire arsenal for them.
Rick is looking to see what kind of bridge exists between himself and the people he’s ministering to. If it’s a smaller bridge, built with less trust or less understanding of the things of God, then he’s able to bring less ministry over the bridge, perhaps just the ministry of a pastor. After a number of visits, perhaps the bridge is strong enough to support apostolic ministry.
If I don’t have any relationship with you at all, then it will be very difficult for me to minister to you, to strengthen you, encourage you, to equip you for the assignments that God has given you. Likewise, it’s nearly impossible for me to receive any strength or encouragement from you. There are people I know professionally; most of them don’t have a bridge with me that would support a prophetic word or a revelation from scripture.
When I speak with a group of people, the first thing on my agenda is to build relationship with them. I only have a few minutes with them, maybe an hour, so we have to work fast; I do that work with jokes, stories, illustrations. Fortunately, I have a teaching gift from God and the Holy Spirit loves to inhabit them: He makes the job much easier and faster, but it still takes time, and if I hope to carry something of value to them, I must have a bridge to do it!
Even Jesus saved his heavy revelation for the Last Supper, after Judas had left to collect his 30 pieces of silver. Only there among his eleven most trusted friends did he share his most significant secrets. Those were the only relationships that were able to bear it.
For a more scriptural example, let’s look at 1 Corinthians 3: It’s my opinion that this is essentially what Paul is saying: “Your end of the bridge isn’t substantial enough for this ministry.” They were acting like “mere men” which prevented him from teaching them weightier subjects. Same with Hebrews 5. The seven sons of Sceva may be an example of the bridge of relationship breaking because they tried to carry too much weight over it, but Stephen certainly is such an example.
Recently, I needed to bring a very strong word of correction to a brother in Christ. I actually had the word two years earlier, but the word was heavy enough that our relationship couldn’t support it. We built a relationship over those years, and eventually he invited me to speak into his life on that subject, and when I did, our relationship supported the weight of the word: he made the needed changes in his life (it took a few years), and we’re still friends. Now we both speak into each others’ lives.
Now the question is whether you and I have enough of a relationship to support this much meat? It’s not really a lot of weight, but then, we don’t have a lot of experience relating to each other either. "
[End of e-mail]
I thought about his words for a long time.
I thought about people in the church who can't receive correction from leaders, because they've never established a relationship strong enough to support a word of correction. They go from one church to another.
I thought about the sidewalk evangelist who brazenly walks through town condemning people to hell, without every stopping to ask their name or demonstrate one act of compassion.
I think about street healers who go around healing injured people just to gather testimonies to share with anyone who will listen....and leave without anything else being said.
I came to this conclusion:
Ministry Flows Through Relationships
We must learn how to develop bridges of relationship with people if we hope to ministering healing (or anything else) to them. Even if it's a small bridge, they must have a reason to trust us. Healing may just be the beginning of their life in the kingdom. After healing or deliverance they'll need to be discipled. Who does that? It might be us if we have the relationship to support it. We need an approach to ministry that's relational. What kind of model do I use?
I look at Jesus when I think about how we should minister. He healed people in a variety of ways. Sometimes the sick came to him. He didn't need to establish who he was in those cases. The sick knew he had the power to heal. All he did was release the healing to them. But we're discussing a different type of ministry here. One in which the person we want to minister to knows nothing about us. In those cases we need to do something to give them a reason to let us into their world.
My favorite encounter is where Jesus met the woman at the well of Samaria in John 4. Here's a brief overview of their encounter:
- Jesus departs from Judea and heads toward Galilee, passing through Samaria. (verses 3-4)
- He meets a woman at the well and asks for a drink (verse 7)
- She is offended at his request (verse 9)
- They discuss the nature of water. (verses 10-15)
- Jesus gives her a prophetic word about her current boyfriend and previous husbands (verses 17-18)
- She recognizes him as a prophet (verse 19)
- They discuss religious practices (verses 20-24)
- She brings up the subject of the Messiah (verse 24)
- He reveals that he is the Messiah (verse 25)
My suggestion is simple. Take a few minutes to get to know the person you want to heal. If they have an obvious injury ask how it happened. Ask about the weather or their children. Ask them about anything you might have in common with them. If you see sadness ask what it's about. If you sense fear ask that they're afraid of. Listen to what they say and respond (out of compassion) if it seems appropriate.
Take time to establish a bridge of trust before attempting to minister to someone. People don't care how much you know until they know how much you care.
Original Post: "Ministry Flows Through Relationships":
Jan 13, 2011
Jan 11, 2011
I went with my daughter to the grocery store. I'm not deliberately trying to influence her in the direction of healing. It just sorta....happens.
Leaving the store, I noticed a middle-aged woman limping toward the parking lot.
I almost heard the Holy Spirit say, " Go get her."
I approached, gave her my best smile and asked why she was limping.
She shot me a grin and asked why it was any of my business.
I presented my credentials:
I'm a paramedic. I work in Tacoma. I'm not crazy and I'm not a stalker. I just like to see people blessed by the healing power of God. You can ask my lovely daughter....honest, lady!
We talked for about ten minutes. She asked every question under the sun. I gave every decent answer I could think of. She grilled my daughter again about me.
I said, "look, why don't we walk to your car and talk about it on the way. (We were creating a scene in the entrance to the store)
She limped pathetically toward her car. She let me push the shopping cart.
As she walked I could see it was her knee. She couldn't bend it. I asked what was wrong. She had a torn meniscus in her left knee and needed surgery which she couldn't afford. She was terrified about what would happen if she couldn't work because of the injury.
I said, "May I please try to get your knee healed? What will it hurt if I just try?"
She reluctantly agreed.
I placed my hand on her knee and commanded the pain to leave in the name of Jesus. I commanded the spirit of pain to leave and never come back.
I asked how she felt. She said it was a little better. I commanded it to be healed one more time and asked how it felt. All the pain was gone.
She looked at me and said, "Are you for real?"
I said, "Jesus is more real that you know and he's the one who healed you. He loves you and he has a great plan for your future." I asked if she had any other conditions I could pray for. She let me pray for back pain and high blood pressure. I gave her a card to the website and we talked for a while about the goodness of God. She gave me a hug and we left her with with a huge smile on her face.
My daughter was grinning from ear to ear as we walked to the car. I love showing her how our Father loves His kids.
Jesus is the reason for the season. Have a wonderful Christmas.
Jan 8, 2011
Jan 5, 2011
Here's one solution:
On recent call, we took an elderly man home from the hospital. He had terminal metastatic cancer of the spine that had spread to multiple organs. When we got to his home we were met by his family. His daughter wanted to help us lift him into bed but couldn’t. She had a severe back injury. My partner and I moved him over with ease then I asked his daughter about her back injury.
She sustained a crushed vertebrae in a car accident years ago. Typically, the damaged bone is repaired surgically with bone grafts. Metal plates or rods are attached to stabilize it further. Unfortunately, many patients suffer severe pain after the procedure. This was one of those cases.
She has severe pain every day. She's on the waiting list for a vertebral implant; a device that replaces the damaged bone. It's used with a bone graft to fuse the vertebrae together.
I asked if she wanted to be healed. She asked what I had planned and if it would hurt. She wasn't very trusting, but I decided to have fun with her.
I told her I wanted to show her instead of tell her.
She asked what I was going to do.
I asked her to trust me.
She wanted to know if it would hurt. I promised not to hurt her and asked if I could place my hand on her back.
She gave in.
I placed my hand on the middle of her back and commanded it to be healed in Jesus name.
With a huge smile that soon turned to laughter she said, “I just love my holy ghost friends.”
I asked if she felt anything.
“Just the presence of God.”
I spoke to the spirit of pain and commanded it to leave, then commanded her spine to be healed and asked how she felt.
Twisting back and forth at the waist she said, “I can’t feel any pain.” She bent down and touched her toes and informed me that all the pain was gone.
She wrapped her arms around me and gave me a big hug and thanked me.
She's bound to have an MRI soon. I wonder what they'll find.
She asked if I’d pray for her dad who we brought from the hospital. I didn’t get a chance to pray with him in the ambulance because I was driving. We knelt down beside his bed and prayed for healing. I gave her some infomation about how to keep the pain in her back from returning and gave her a card to the website.
She thanked us and we left.
I can't describe in words how wonderful it is to be used as an instrument in the hands of God. Nearly everywhere I go there are people who need the great physician's healing touch. Some are on the waiting list, hoping for man's best invention as a remedy for their pain.
Jesus is so much better at healing than we are.
Jan 1, 2011
He told me of the time he lay dying while pounding on the door of the sobering center. He was desperately trying to be let in before they opened. After crashing from being drunk, he began vomiting blood. He thought it would stop, but the blood kept coming.