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Independence Day Prayers

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God loves a good celebration!  I’m fascinated by the feasts He created for the Israelites to enjoy, appointed times to remember God’s goodness to them. As we near Independence Day, God delights in our celebration and remembrance of what He has done for us individually and what He did in forming our nation.

Take some time to ponder our history and how God has formed our country and sustained it through the years.  What makes us unique?  What gift are we meant to be to other nations?  How can we fulfill the destiny God has for us individually and as a country?

We also realize America is not where it should be.  We have the promise of 2 Chronicles 7:14 that remains as true today as when it was recorded, “If my people…will humble themselves, pray and seek My face, and turn from their wicked ways, then I will hear from Heaven and will forgive their sin and heal their land.”

As we celebrate and thank God for our freedoms, let’s also cry out to Him to heal our land!

Here’s a prayer from the only time congress convened on a fourth of July.

1861 (July 4), Senate Prayer

The following prayer was offered by Rev. Byron Sunderland, D.D.

Almighty and everlasting God, be not angry with us for our sins, which we only confess and deplore; but pardon our offenses and extend to us Thy favor. We thank Thee for Thy goodness on this anniversary of the nation a day tenfold more precious by reason of our present troubles, and sacred to the heart for the ever memorable Declaration of our fathers, in which Thou didst begin more openly to give us a name among the nations of the earth. We thank Thee for all Thy manifold and abundant mercies hitherto to make our nation exceedingly great and glorious; but now disasters have befallen us and darkness broods in the land. And now we ask Thy mercy as the Senate is convening at a most momentous crisis of our history. Give to Thy servants all needed help. Add to their deliberations wisdom and unanimity, and profit and speed to their conclusion. Bless Thy servant, the President of the United States, our veteran Commander-in- Chief, and all that have functions in the civil and military power. May the angel of Thy presence walk in the Cabinet and in the Congress and in the camp, to go before, to purify, and to direct the now greatly and universally-awakened love of country. And we beseech Thee to guide us, to overrule and order all things, and so to cause that nothing shall fail, that the disorders of the land may be speedily healed, that peace and concord may prevail, that truth and righteousness may be established, and that Thy Church and Kingdom may flourish in a larger peace and prosperity, for Thy Son, our Saviour, Jesus Christ’s sake. Amen. (Source: Congressional Globe, 37th Congress, first session, new series, 1, 4 July 1861.)

 

Inner Healing Prayer, Part Eight – Deliverance

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Many of us might fear the topic of deliverance, however, when we look at Jesus’ ministry (and the early church), deliverance was a natural part of it.  One aspect of Jesus’ (and our) commission is to “…set the captives free.”  (Isaiah 61:1) In some of Jesus’ last words to His disciples, He said that those who believe in Him would cast out demons (Mark 16:17).

People commonly ask, “Can a Christian be demon possessed?”   I believe the answer is no.  However, part of it is in the language we use.  Older translations use the words “demon possessed” but newer ones the more accurate word “demonized” indicating that Satan has a stronghold or foothold in that person’s life.  I believe the word “demonized” can apply to a Christian.

I personally don’t recommend deliverance outside of an inner healing process.  Often the demons got a foothold or stronghold from issues of unforgiveness, bitterness, from trauma (particularly a spirit of fear) or generational sins.  If these issues are not dealt with, it can open the door for the demons to return. (Matthew 12:43-45)

It’s not recommended to converse with or make demons manifest.  Simply binding them and then commanding them out in Jesus’ name is best.  You don’t need to know the “name” of a demon.  They are liars.  Ask Jesus to reveal anything you need to know.

If you need help, find someone who is walking in Jesus’ authority and has had experience with deliverance.

Here’s four steps from the book “Set Yourself Free” by Robert Heidler:

Crowd them out – Fill your life with Jesus

Starve them out – demons feed on works of the flesh/sin

Command them out – Exercise your authority in Christ

Stand your ground – “Therefore submit to God.  Resist the devil and he will flee from you.”  James 4:7

Sample Prayer for Self-Deliverance:  In the name of the Lord Jesus Christ, I come against you demonic spirits and I bind your activity in my life.  I declare that I have confessed and repented of every known sin, and that Jesus Christ has forgiven me.  I declare that Jesus is my Lord.  My life belongs to Him!  I confess that I am redeemed by the blood of the Lamb out of the hand of the enemy!

Spirit of _______________, I speak directly to you.  The blood of the Lord Jesus Christ has redeemed me and set me free from your oppression.  You have no legal right to touch me.  I drive you from my life now and I command you to leave in the name of Jesus!

Thank you, Lord Jesus, that Your blood and Your authority have set me free! (Adapted from “Set Yourself Free” by Robert Heidler)

 

Inner Healing Prayer, Part Seven – Spiritual Pollution

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We don’t often think about spiritual pollution and how it affects us. Our enemy wants to use whatever means he can to pollute our atmosphere and cause us to stumble.  For many years I was ignorant of the impact that idols can have in our lives. Yeah, idols.  This can be anything from a real idol (often from other countries) to occult objects to anything we’ve made an idol (put above God).  The power is not in the object itself, but in the attachment the enemy has on it.   Sometimes when traveling, we buy items that we think are just “art” or decoration, but if it has been dedicated to a foreign god, it brings pollution into our atmosphere.

Years ago we had a foreign exchange student stay with us for a couple of months.  As a gift, she brought us an incense burner in the form of an idol.  We didn’t think much of it at the time and because it was a gift, were sentimental about it.  However, we grew increasingly uncomfortable about it over the years and after learning more about spiritual housecleaning, realized it had to go.

Take some time to go through your home asking the Lord if there is anything that is there that is polluting your atmosphere.  It might be photos from an ungodly relationship, occult objects or things used by the enemy or a gift that has attachments to it.   Use the steps below to do spiritual housecleaning in your home:

House Cleaning Exercise:

  1.  Dedicate your home to the Lord – Invite God’s presence
  2. Take a Spiritual Inventory of your home – Ask God for discernment
  3. Cleanse your home of ungodly objects – Burn items if possible
  4. Ask forgiveness –
  5. Cleanse each room and the land – repent for known sins committed
  6. Consecrate your home and property to God – Declare Joshua 24:15
  7. Fill your home with glory – Worship, take communion, etc.

(From “Setting Yourself Free” by Robert Heidler, also recommend the book “Protecting Your Home from Spiritual Darkness” by Chuck Pierce)

Jun 9, 2014 - 101-150    No Comments

Inner Healing Prayers – Part Six – Generational Patterns

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In the beginning, God created us so that from generation to generation blessings would flow from parent to child in ever increasing ways.  This principle holds true even though sin has brought an added dimension.  Now, not only are blessings passed on, so are patterns of sin or iniquity (a bent towards sin).

We want to honor and bless the good that we receive from our parents, but to also identify those areas the enemy is seeking to ensnare and destroy our bloodline and deal with them, so that we do not pass them on to our children.  These patterns may include traits like pride, stubbornness, lying (see the pattern of deception in Abraham, Isaac and Jacob) as well as things like adultery, divorce, alcoholism, etc.  We don’t need to be discouraged when we recognize these patterns!  God has given us a way out of these through Jesus’ blood!!!

Set aside some time to ask the Lord what issues He wants you to address.  Write down what He shows you.  You can then use this sample prayer taken from the book “Set Yourself Free” By Robert Heidler (a book I highly recommend!  You can get your copy at www.gloryofzion.org)

Dear Lord,

I confess that my family (nation, church, etc) is guilty of ______.  I acknowledge that through these sins we have opened a door to judgment, curses and demonic oppression upon ourselves.

I agree with You that these things are wrong.  I choose, as an act of my will, to renounce these sins and turn from them.  I claim the forgiveness and protection of the blood of Jesus.  Thank You that Jesus took my curse and judgment upon Himself.  By His authority I now break every curse and demonic assignment that has come against me as a result of these ancestral sins.  I thank You that the blood of Jesus has set me free.

I pray that the blessing of salvation be released to my family line in Jesus name. Amen.  (Taken from “Set Yourself Free” by Robert Heidler)

Inner Healing Prayer, Part Five – Healing Prayers for Trauma

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We all experience it.  There’s no avoiding pain and trauma in our lives.  Much is healed in Jesus’ presence through worship, prayer and time spent with Him and His body.  However, there are situations when we experience particularly intense trauma that needs attention to heal appropriately and to be able to move on in healthy ways.

I grew up with the belief system that emotions were inferior, weak and even bad and needed to be stuffed or reasoned away.  It was a surprise for me as an adult to realize that God has emotions and that since I was made in His image, He gave me emotions for good reasons.  While we don’t want to be ruled by our emotions, they are an important part of our make-up and we need to learn how to express and process them appropriately.  The enemy wants to use our emotions against us, but God gave us emotions to express the beauty and variety of being able to feel as He does.

When we experience intense trauma, our tendency is to stuff emotion, particularly if it is negative.  We need help to process those with the Lord and others so we can move on in wholeness.  The enemy can also use trauma as a place to gain a foothold in our lives through fear.  We don’t want to become a victim but to learn ways to overcome the lies of the enemy and the fear that may invade as a result of the trauma.  God has a plan for our victory, turning every test into a testimony, every pain into praise.  Sometimes there is an instant healing through prayer, in other situations it make take a process to work through.  Trust God for your journey.

If you realize you’ve experienced trauma that is still haunting you, don’t hesitate to get some help!  Here’s some resources:

Hope in Life Ministrywww.hopeinlifeministry.com  Brenda Zamorano – 916-932-2384

Sacramento Healing Prayer Ministry – Ann Fish – annfish@surewest.net  Chandra Domich – cdomich@comcast.net

 

Inner Healing Prayer, Part Four – Forgiving Others

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A significant part of inner healing prayer is forgiving others.  Unforgiveness keeps us in bondage to the other person and hinders us from walking in the fullness that God has for us. Forgiving others sets us free and allows God to work redemptive purposes in the person who wounded us.

Forgiveness is not:

Excusing sin

Tolerating abuse

Pretending something didn’t happen

Forgiveness is:

Making a conscious choice of our will to forgive

Choosing to see the other person through Jesus’ eyes

Releasing our pain to the Lord and trusting Him to heal our heart

Praying blessing for the one who wounded us

There was a man who deeply wounded my family and me when I was growing up.  A number of years ago, I had been processing this with a prayer counselor and yet didn’t feel fully free.  In desperation one day, I cried out to the Lord, “How do you see this man?”  In that moment, God gave me a vision of meeting this man in heaven.  The atmosphere was so full of love, healing, peace and grace.  I could see sorrow in the eyes of this man for what he had done, but not guilt, shame or condemnation.  It was a very healing picture for me.

Because this man was not a believer when I knew him, I assumed at first that in the intervening years someone must have brought him to the Lord.  However, God began to show me that I had the privilege of praying this man into the kingdom!  This is why God asks us to pray for our enemies!  Maybe no one else would pray for this man.  I’m looking forward to meeting him one day in heaven.

Who is God prompting you that you need to forgive?  Here’s a great forgiveness exercise from the book “Set Yourself Free” by Robert Heidler (To purchase your own copy of this wonderful book, go to www.gloryofzion.org)

On a separate sheet of paper, list in one column those who have hurt you.  In the second column write how they hurt you.  Then go through the list praying this prayer over each person and situation:

I forgive you______________________ for___________________________.

As an act of my will I choose not to hold you accountable for these things.  I give up my right to think about them, speak about them, vindicate myself or seek retaliation.  I fully and freely release you and set you free for the Lord to deal with in His grace.  By the grace I’ve found in Jesus, I now declare you to be forgiven.

Inner Healing Prayer, Part Three – Lies we Believe

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One part of inner healing is recognizing lies we believe about ourselves, God and others that influence our daily life.  One of the enemy’s greatest tactics is to get us to believe these lies so that we won’t walk in the fullness that God created for us to walk.

Most of the lies we don’t immediately recognize as many of them we’ve been “taught” since our first breath.  The enemy would often use those closest to us to speak things over us that aren’t in alignment with God’s heart.  Because of some teasing early in my life, I believed I wasn’t creative and from another incident, that I couldn’t speak in front of people.  It’s taken healing prayer to expose those lies and to agree with God and walk in the truth.

Some inner healing methods simply have you repent and renounce the lie and declare the truth.  Other methods involve asking the Holy Spirit where the lie came from in the past and have you walk through a process of healing.  One healing stream that teaches this is called “Theophostic Prayer”.  Through this process, the source of the lie is identified, the person is asked “where was Jesus in that incident?” and led to a place of healing as the lies and trauma of it are exposed and truth, light and Jesus replace the lie.

I would add a word of caution.  I’ve seen many people greatly blessed by what is called theophostic prayer and others who were not.  There is some controversy over this method.  I believe the basic principles are sound and that God does want to heal past trauma and speak healing into our lives, but some methods may not be helpful and may border on new age techniques or the person feeling the need to “produce” a response with guided imagery.  As with many good things, there is a true and a false.  I don’t want to throw out something just because some have used it wrongly.  The Lord will give you wisdom and insight as you seek Him.

What lies are you believing?  What truth does God want to speak into your heart?  One way to help reinforce God’s truth is using declarations (see previous blogs) or writing our own based on Scripture.  Here’s one a wrote a number of years ago to help me overcome the lie that poverty is “righteous” based off of Exodus 1:7 and Proverbs 13:22

I thank you Lord for causing us to be fruitful, to increase abundantly and to multiply and to grow exceedingly mighty.  I thank you that we pass on to our children an inheritance of fruitfulness and favor through Jesus Christ.

Inner Healing Prayer, Part Two – Sozo

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Sozo is the Greek word translated “saved/healed/delivered” and is an inner healing method used to bring transformation and wholeness to individuals.  The goal is to identify root issues that may be hindering the person from moving forward in their walk with Jesus and through prayer, set them free.  Sozo is not counseling, but a time of seeking the Holy Spirit’s leading in a time of prayer.  As with any inner healing process, groups may use different methods and call it “sozo”.

Because inner healing is a delicate issue and much damage can be done by well-meaning people, it’s important that not just anybody prays for you.  Go with people you trust or come highly recommended by people you trust.

Inner healing is not typically a “one time event”, but part of a process of growing and maturing in Christ.  One of the down sides of how some groups do sozo is that it is thought of as a one-time encounter and no need for further sessions.  Any healing ministry that proposes an “instant” cure or the opposite, years and years of intensive focus, should probably not be your choice.

If you live in the Sacramento region, we will be having a workshop on Inner healing on Saturday, May 17, at The Rock of Roseville.  Go to www.intercessorsworkshop.com for more information.

Inner Healing Prayer, Part One

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What’s inner healing prayer? Why do we need it?  If I’m a new creation in Christ, why am I still struggling?  These are some questions we will be answering in this and upcoming blogs.  If you are in the Sacramento area, click here for an upcoming workshop on this topic!

Inner healing prayer represents a broad spectrum of types of prayer developed by various streams in the last couple of decades based on Biblical principles.  The focus is to help heal trauma from the past, deal with strongholds of the mind and heart and generational sins.  It can include prayer for deliverance.

My first introduction to inner healing was through Elijah House, a ministry based in Idaho (for more information, go to www.elijahhouse.org).  My husband and I went through a week of intensive prayer counseling that opened our eyes to understanding more about the process and journey God takes each one of us on in bringing healing and restoration.  Years later, we discovered a local healing prayer center that offered the same type of prayer as well as training.  What we encountered there radically changed our lives, breaking us out of performance religion into experiencing Jesus in new ways.  Are we perfect?  No way!  Has it been an easy journey?  No, but joyful in growing in God.  Is there more to be done?  You bet!  But we’ve learned that it isn’t about being “perfect” but about enjoying the process of growing into maturity in Jesus.

Some people teach just to shut the door on the past and move forward, but I’ve found that God, who lives outside of time, is present in my past, present and future and where my past is hindering me from moving forward, He wants to reveal things needed to escape the snares of the enemy and keep going.

Inner healing isn’t about being “perfect” or putting a patch on an old garment or trying harder to do right, but about a joyful journey of growing in God, who loves us deeply and delights in our process.  In future blogs, we will look at specific methods and the strengths and weaknesses of each.

 

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