Category Archives: healing

Overcoming a broken heart

I remember the incident like it happened yesterday. It was a Saturday around 9 pm. I was innocently scrolling through my Facebook notifications when a post appeared that he was tagged in: “..You are the best thing that has happened to me, I love you, I always have a smile on my face when you call…” STOP! I couldn’t read anymore. This can’t possibly be happening. Moreover, her Facebook surname was the exact same one as his. Could she be a distant cousin I never knew about?

I continued reading and saw that her friends were commenting on the thread and were congratulating her on her new-found love and relationship. STOP! I had to stop reading. I felt as if my heart was going burst out of my rib cage.

Out of curiosity, I snooped through her pictures. She was the complete opposite of me. Was I not good enough? Is this what I deserved to reap after all these years?

I started to cry uncontrollably, and called my prayer partner. It was the most unbearable pain I had ever experienced in my life. She told me I would be okay. I sent him a message with the screenshot of the Facebook post and said that we were done. He never responded. I felt humiliated, everyone that knew us had seen it. Some pretended they never saw, others comforted me, some even said I was to blame. The next day, I attended an event and he was present. No hello, no remorse; he looked the other way.

Is this the person I thought I would spend the rest of my life with? He jumped from saying that I was the woman he envisioned to one day be his life-long partner, to now a complete stranger. Painful.

I had seen the signs before, forgiven, prayed and fasted. However, how does God change one who doesn’t want to change? It is like making a house clean and the owner makes it dirty again. They did not ask you to clean their house and they are not ready to deal with their mess.

I decided to confide in one of my other friends, I showed her messages. She asked me: “why are you looking at this, just move on with your life”. I felt very alone, and it was as if those closest to me did not understand the pain I was in.

He eventually sent me a message, I was hoping it would have been a lousy “I am sorry” or “it is not what it seems like”. Instead, it read “why are you spreading rumours about me?”. That was the end of his communication, and he never apologized.

I asked myself why? What did I do to deserve such maltreatment? Why did things have to end this way? Why the heartlessness? Why the disrespect? Why the coldness?

Even through all the emotion, I kept hearing the Holy Spirit say: “he made a choice”.

I then had a dream, where God showed me my life years ahead from now. I was a mother to a child. As I was nursing the child, He was surrounded by women. He was never going to change.

As painful as it was, I thank God for the experience, because He saved me from a lifetime of pain. Sometimes we pray prayers without realizing that God is working i.e. ‘Let your will be done’.

People always say that time heals however God heals faster. He restored my heart, rejuvenated my spirit and has given me a positive outlook on life.


Overcoming a broken heart- pointers

  • Forgive yourself. We have all made some choices in life which we regret having made. However, God has preserved you; He still has a great life full of joy and blessings ahead. (Jeremiah 29:11)
  • Surrender all your pain to God. As humans, we tend to want to keep some things to ourselves. However, God wants you whole and wants to take the burden for everything that concerns you- even the most painful things. (Psalm 55:22)
  • Forgive. Don’t wait for the other person to apologize to forgive them; they might never do so. Your salvation is more precious than their apology. Ask the Holy Spirit for grace to forgive. (Matthew 6:14-15)
  • Gods plan is always the best. You may not see it now but God is working out a great life for your which will override this situation. (Jeremiah 29:11)
  • You will get through this. Not only will you get through this, but your latter days will be better than your former days. (Job 8:7)
  • Not all men all the same. As cheesy as it may sound, just as God has made you incredibly unique, so do men also differ,
  • Pray over ungodly soul ties. Whether sexual or emotional, for us to fully disconnect from an individual, we need to break spiritual soul ties. Ask the Holy Spirit to guide you in this prayer.
  • God will give you honour for your shame. You may not see it now, but your double portion is on its way! (Isaiah 61:7)
  • You are worth more than rubies. He might not see it, but we are not defined by what other people think of us, but what God tells us we are. Don’t allow this situation to define who you are (Proverbs 3:15)
  • Pray for him. As much as he does not deserve it, it is a spiritual level God expects us to be able to attain. Ask the Holy Spirit for grace to be able to do so. (Luke 6:28)

The blessed mourner

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Life has never been so overwhelming for me. I had encountered hardship and pain before, but this was one of a kind. There were days when I sat in silence and just did not know what to say anymore; I was puzzled and confused. How can so many hurtful things all happen at once, and why in this way?

The journey commenced in January 2015 when the Lord spoke to me and told me to urgently go to Uganda to pray for my grandmother. At first I doubted my hearing, especially since my grandmother was of a different faith. However, my prayer partner received the same revelation and said she would also accompany me on the journey.

So in April 2015, I went to Uganda. We asked my 87-year-old grandmother if she was receptive to us praying for her and she agreed. We laid our hands on her, prayed for her and her salvation. She was so grateful and asked when we would come back and pray for her. That was the last time I saw her. She passed away in December 2015.

Last time I saw my grandmother, April 2015
Last time I saw my grandmother, April 2015

             

I was shocked as I did not have an incline that she would pass, let alone that the significance of the prayer and that it would usher her into heaven. It really taught me that when God calls you to move and do something, you have to act instantly- no hesitation or doubt. I was really distraught by her death and as she passed away a few days before Christmas and my arrival in Uganda, it was a sombre mourning festive season.

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It was during this trip that I got my hearts desire to pray for John, a minister who spiritually guided me over the years (read blog post – Discerning the season). He was a man of God who I looked up to, who believed one-day God would use me and wanted to see its manifestation. He suddenly passed away in July 2016. It was very devastating and painful. For days, I would stay awake at night wondering if this was really happening. I just didn’t understand how someone who had just started such a huge ministry passed away so suddenly.

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Minister and close friend, John Baptist Mukajanga

During this time of mourning, is when I found out my cousin, brother and friend Hamim had been diagnosed with stage 4 lung cancer. I don’t even know if the word “shocked” can sum up how I felt when I got the news. Is this really all happening at once? How can a fit, athletic, non-smoker, 29-year-old have lung cancer?

I found myself for the next few weeks going to the hospital almost daily to see him, to try and encourage him. The good thing is that he had a lot of friends around him and a big family support. I continued to ask God to heal him and for his salvation (as he was of another faith) but he became worse every day. Within weeks, he went from being a healthy athlete to being unable to talk and eat. It was heart breaking. It was during this time that I went on a prebooked holiday to Uganda. Days after arriving in Uganda is when he passed away. This was August 2016. I just couldn’t believe that another close person had passed away within the space of weeks.

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With my cousin, brother and friend Hamim

The pain became unbearable- I could feel the physical heart ache. This lead to panic attacks and depression. Depression is a silent killer which brought along old bad habits/sins, confusion and disconnecting me from the Lord. I stopped hearing and dreaming and was unable to pray. The spirit of fear had taken over and I was unable to sleep at night. I allowed the pain to consume me, and that was a mistake I made. However, at this time, I no longer knew how to deal with it or what to do anymore.

A week after my return from Uganda, my mum woke me up at 6 am. She initially asked me how I slept and if I was okay. I said yes. It was at that time that she informed me that my other grandmother had passed away. This was a lady I had seen the previous week before my return to London. She was fit, healthy and jolly and there was no sign that it would be the last time I would see her. At this moment, I felt like bad news had become the norm of my life. As I continued to suffer from anxiety, I went back to old habits and sins. I felt trapped in a box.

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Last time I saw my grandmother, August 2016

During this time, people would still send me their prayer requests and would ask me when I was next posting a post on Pearl Sisters. But I thought to myself, “How can I encourage some else when I need encouragement myself?”

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As much as people told me I was going to be “alright” and “get through it”, the times when I was alone in my bed  were when the real manifestation of emotions occurred. It was at this stage that I realised that only God was going to get me through and strengthen me.

1 Samuel 30:6 David was greatly distressed because the men were talking of stoning him; each one was bitter in spirit because of his sons and daughters. But David found strength in the LORD his God.

The Holy Spirit reminded me that this was for a season (read the blog post Discerning the season), and this season would pass. I started to discern the tricks the enemy was using to destroy me and my ministry, and knew I needed to stand firm. So I took a step back from ministry to focus on myself, my healing and deliverance.  I knew I needed to continue, to encourage someone that everything will be okay.

I want to encourage you today that regardless of what you are going through, you will get through it alive and in one piece. We all go through stages in life where it is so difficult, painful and sorrowful. But this is the time you need to hold unto God the most. He is the only one who can restore and repair and there is always a great lesson to be learnt. It is okay sometimes to take a step back and reflect, seek God for direction and focus on yourself. Take your time, there is no rush. God has seen every tear, pain, and sadness and it is His will for your to be joyful. Take courage.


In memory of Jajja Namutebi, Jajja Namazzi, JB and Hamim xxx


Discerning the season

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Seasonal people, we are indeed seasonal people. How do we know we are in a particular season and when will it end? Discerning the season can be tricky at times, and requires revelation from the Holy Spirit. Revelation brings about more clarity to ones’ situation, teaches valuable lifelong lessons and gives one hope.

My current season has had more lows than ups and I pondered why God allowed me to walk this journey. It can be depicted as a strong earthquake destroying all that is around it, all in a short frame of time – it is for a season. One may want to ask God What His purpose is for the current season. What is God trying to teach you? How does one pass the test? As uncomfortable as the season may be, one must walk and battle through it to get to the next phase in life.

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My biggest pain in this season has been the departure of John. I was 21 when I met John. I was at a Christian retreat in Uganda and we sat on the same breakfast table . “God is going to use you one day and you will have your own ministry, he said”. At the time I thought it was the most hilarious statement one had ever spoken concerning my life. “I mean people operate in their spiritual gifts as soon as they are born right? I don’t have any and I don’t even know how to pray. Moreover, I have committed the worst sins ever, there was no way God was ever going to be able to use me”. But he insisted He saw the revelation clearly and told me He would walk with me during my spiritual walk. During the prayer meeting, John uttered a few words and the presence of the Holy Spirit touched me in a way I have never experienced before. The Holy Spirit was real and I felt transformed. I later found out that he was one of the ministers at the church and I always admired his humility.

When I returned to the UK, we remained in touch and whenever he had time he continued to guide me in the ways of the Lord. He became like a spiritual father to me. His church grew to countless numbers of attendees, God blessed him with a huge teaching and deliverance ministry. He had his own TV show on the Ugandan television and a slot on the Christian radio station. He was a man who loved people of all dominions and would always go to the hospital to pray for my Islamic grandmother. After witnessing him healing and delivering many individuals, I also witnessed a personal testimony which touched the depth of my heart. He prayed for my unbelieving mother and she received Jesus as her Lord and savior. That was one of the most treasurable moments of my life.

It was always my heart’s desire to be able to pray for the man of God. I wanted him to see the work the Lord had done in me in five years since the retreat. In January 2016, this came to pass and he was astonished by the spiritual growth. It was as if it was a proud father/daughter moment and he encouraged me to keep pushing my ministry.

However, July 2016, John unexpectedly passed away at the age of 40. It was such a tremendous shock to me and it felt as if my life was over. Why him? How am I going to be able to carry on this spiritual journey alone? I physically cannot take this pain. He was such a great spiritual figure in my life, within my family and had become family to us. Why did he have to go so soon? His ministry has only just started and the body of Christ needs him! However, it was his season to be with the Lord.

The Holy Spirit comforted me by referring me back to the disciples and how they responded to Jesus’ crucifixion. They did not fully comprehend His purpose and why He had to leave them. However, they knew they needed to keep walking, keep fighting the good fight of faith and to continue the work Jesus had started. That is what has encouraged me to keep on going.

As much as this season has been a time of mourning, it has also been a season of growth for me spiritually. I have had to learn to stand on my own two feet and strengthen my relationship with the Father. It is a season where I have been forced to be bold and keep my eyes on Jesus, despite my current circumstance. There are aspects of myself I would not have been able to identify had I not gone through this low season and in the long run it has made me a better person. I thank God for the season He gave me with John, for the valuable lessons I learnt from him and for giving me someone who believed in what God was planning for my life. I would not have been the Christian I am not today had I not met him. God has reminded me that the Holy Spirit who worked through John is still alive. We cannot give up, regardless of how painful our current situation is. We have to continue with His work as our time is precious and there is still a lot of work to do!


Ecclesiastes 3:1-8

To everything there is a season,

A time for every purpose under heaven:

A time to be born,

    And a time to die; A time to plant,     And a time to pluck what is planted;  A time to kill,     And a time to heal; A time to break down,     And a time to build up;  A time to weep,     And a time to laugh; A time to mourn,     And a time to dance;  A time to cast away stones,     And a time to gather stones; A time to embrace,     And a time to refrain from embracing;  A time to gain,     And a time to lose; A time to keep,     And a time to throw away;  A time to tear,     And a time to sew; A time to keep silence,     And a time to speak;  A time to love,     And a time to hate; A time of war,     And a time of peace


Let go and let God

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Letting go and letting God, is a statement we have been hearing throughout our Christian walks. It sounds so easy, yet takes the grace to be able to fully accomplish. We say to ourselves that we have fully surrendered all to God. But have we really done so? Are there some things we partially surrender and are keeping to ourselves?

Time and time again we deceive ourselves and say we have gotten over something, yet the residues are still hidden within our hearts. We tell ourselves they are not there and cover it up. Other times we are not ready to deal with them and again pretentiously neglect them. Or, we accept that they are there and refuse to let go of them.

A couple of weeks ago, I was feeling troubled. I couldn’t pray, I couldn’t serve the way I would usually do and I had no peace. I tried everything to pin point what may possibly be making me feel this way. It was then that the Lord brought a friend of mine to my attention. As I envisioned this person, emotions of rage, pain, unforgiveness, bitterness and hatred came to my spirit. I remembered all the hurtful things this individual did to me, and the fact that they refused to apologize for it all. I had made up in my heart that I would “forgive” them but never “forget” what they did unless they had apologized.

Jeremiah 17:9 The heart is deceitful above all things, and desperately wicked: who can know it?

The Holy Spirit encouraged me to love her, and see her the way He sees her. So I started to pray for her. I prayed for God to change her, for her salvation and for God to remove the heart of stone etc. It was at this point that the Lord gave me a vision, and I was standing in front of a mirror. It was then that He revealed the bitterness, anger, hatred, unforgiveness, lack of compassion and mercy that was buried in my heart towards her. He then showed me my house and it was a total mess. He then told me: You cannot ask me to change someone when you have all this clutter within you. You have clean your own house before you clean another someone else’s.

Matthew 7:3-5 And why do you look at the speck in your brother’s eye, but do not consider the plank in your own eye? Or how can you say to your brother, ‘Let me remove the speck from your eye’; and look, a plank is in your own eye? Hypocrite! First remove the plank from your own eye, and then you will see clearly to remove the speck from your brother’s eye.

It was then that I realized I had not surrendered everything concerning this person to the Lord, and was still holding unto it deep within my heart. Not only so, but the seed of bitterness had taken over my personality. My compassion and mercy for people had been taken over by this seed without me realizing.

We spend so much time focusing on how we feel and on the faults of others. We spend little time examining ourselves and the flaws we have. We are consumed with emotions. We forget how compassionate and pure in heart Jesus was. That even when He was being crucified, He prayed a prayer of compassion.

Luke 23:34 Jesus said, Father, forgive them, for they do not know what they are doing.

At times, we find it hard to forgive other people, but if God was to deal with us the same way, based on all the sins we have committed in our entire lifetime, we wouldn’t be worthy of receiving anything.

We are in a season where God is cleansing our hearts, our spirits, our households. The vision the Lord gave me was of a washing machine, and He said that He will use His Holy Spirit to cleanse and regenerate us, if only we are willing. My prayer for you today is that God will give you the grace to fully surrender all that is hidden in your hearts to Him and let go. He wants to restore you and make you whole again. I pray that You will get the courage to stand before that mirror and ask God to reveal all the things still hidden in our hearts that we still hold unto. Only He can heal you and make you whole again

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Let go and Let God – pointers

  • Make a list of all the things hidden that You have been unable to surrender to God.
  • Be honest with God about how you feel about situations you have been unable to surrender to Him.
  • Pray and ask God for the grace to surrender them to Him.
  • Pray for healing, deliverance and restoration with your heart, mind and spirit.
  • Imagine yourself standing before a mirror and ask God reveal all the hidden things within your heart that are not pleasing unto Him.
  • Pray and ask God to deliver you from these sins.
  • Use the word of God to speak positivity over these sins and replace them with positive words (e.g the fruit of the Spirit-Galatians 5:22-23).
  • Ask God to give you spiritual eyes to see His children the way He sees them.
  • Pray for God to give you a heart of compassion and mercy towards His children.
  • Ask God to give you a tongue that declares positivity over your life daily.

 


Let go and let God – youtube teaching

Reuniting the household

If one where to ask you to describe your family in five words, what would you come up with? How many of us would have positive things to say about our family members? Do we display a perfect image, and yet have underlying issues? Are we ready to deal with these issues, or are they better off buried away? Every family has issues- every one of them. With some, it is more evident than others and a lot of the time we would prefer to leave things the way they are, rather than dealing with them.

We are in a season where the Lord wants to restore our families. Not only does He want to restore, He wants to reunite our households. The family unit is very powerful, in particular when it operates in unity- hence why the enemy constantly tries to bring division. Just imagine your entire family sold out for Christ, praying and aligning to the will of God. You would collectively demolish the kingdom of darkness and contribute to building God’s kingdom.

God has given individuals as well as families a purpose that will add to His kingdom. However, most families are broken and that is not of God. He has seen the cries, pains, sorrows and disappointments within our families and He wants to knit us back together.

Joel 2:25-26 So I will restore to you the years that the swarming locust has eaten, The crawling locust, The consuming locust, And the chewing locust, My great army which I sent among you. You shall eat in plenty and be satisfied, And praise the name of the Lord your God, Who has dealt wondrously with you; And My people shall never be put to shame.

In this season, God wants to cleanse our hearts from the unforgiveness, selfishness, strive, bitterness, anger, jealousy, envy and all things that do not please Him. He’s clearing out our homes and rearranging it the way He ordained for it to be. God is tearing down the old foundation of our family and is building a new one.

Joshua 24:15 But as for me and my household, we will serve the LORD

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The scripture the Holy Spirit gave me is If a house is divided against itself, that house cannot stand – Mark 3:25. We need one another! Even within His Kingdom, He calls us the body of Christ. He has purposefully made us unique with different spiritual gifts. When we all come together and operate according to His will, we become an empire of greatness. God wants the same for our families. We all have a unique identity, duty and have role to play in our families. The way He showed it to me is that our families can me compared to a puzzle. Without each puzzle piece being put together, the puzzle is incomplete. You may ask yourself why God has placed you in your family? Why did He give you the relatives you have? It may seem like they don’t have a role to play in our lives. In fact, sometimes we wonder whether God made a mistake. However, when He created you, He knew He would raise you up and use you to intercede for your family and save not only a generation but a nation! Sometimes we are so focused on our own needs that we forget to ask God what His purpose is in it. And although the road may have been rocky at times, it was not in vain. There is always something for us to learn and God will always bring something good out of it

Genesis 50:20 But as for you, you meant evil against me; but God meant it for good, in order to bring it about as it is this day, to save many people alive.

In first vision I had, I saw God’s mighty hand capturing His children and bringing them back home. This included children who had driven far away from Him. He was drawing family members back to their households, like the prodigal son (read The return of the prodigal son) Hence why in this season it is crucial for us to keep praying for our lost relatives. There is no person who God cannot capture and rebuild in His goodness. In the second vision, I saw Jesus in our homes and He was weeping. As He shed tears, our homes were being cleansed. I then saw Him with a broom and He was sweeping our homes. He was removing all that He did not place in our homes and in our hearts. God is indeed with us and is doing a new thing.

Haggai 2:9 The glory of this present house will be greater than the glory of the former house,’ says the LORD Almighty. ‘And in this place I will grant peace,’ declares the LORD Almighty.”

I encourage you today to continue pray for your unsaved relatives and those who you find hard to forgive. It takes the grace of God. God loves them as much as He loves us and He as entrusted us to continue to pray for their salvation. May this year be known as the year where the Lord restored our families, reconciled us and did a new thing in our homes.


Reuniting the household- pointers

  • Come to the Lord with a genuine repentant heart. Ask Him to forgive you for your sins.
  • Pray that God will give you the grace to forgive all your relatives and for Him to heal and restore you.
  • Be honest with God about how you feel about particular relatives or incidents that have happened in your family.
  • Ask God reveal all the emotions/feelings we have towards one another and pray that He will remove them.
  • Restoration of headship. Invite Jesus into our home and pray that He will be the centre of your household.
  • Ask God to restore your home and for there to be divine order.
  • Make a list and ask God for all the things you want Him to do in your household.
  • Pray that the love of God, which is unconditional will manifest in your household.
  • Ask God to reveal all generational curses that may still be holding you back as a family, and ask the Holy Spirit to help you pray over these matters.
  • Cancel any negative word which was spoken by relatives and declare positivity over it.
  • Ask God what your families purpose is in the kingdom. Every single one of us has been given a spiritual gift and has a purpose.
  • Pray for the salvation of your lost relatives (see Salvation of a loved one)
  • Ask God on how you and your family can move forward together in unity.
  • Talk out your issues with family members. God wants to iron out our issues, resolve them, so we can move forward.

Let us stand together and pray in unity for the reconciliation and restoration by clicking on the video below:

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Why me?

1453022739779Why me? A question I repetitively asked myself throughout 2015. Everything that could possibly go wrong occurred. All that I feared happening in my life manifested. Why me? My prayers were not being answered the way I expected them to. Moreover, God was silent. Why me? Pain, grief, disappointmentFather where are you. Perhaps this was punishment for my former sins or maybe I was born to live a life of hardship. Everyone around me was having breakthroughs and my journey was getting harder- Why me?

I then found encouragement in the book of Job. Job was a perfect, wealthy, upright man that feared the Lord (read Job 1). One day, God gave satan permission to intervene in Job’s life and cause affliction.

Job 1:6-12 “One day the angels came to present themselves before the Lord, and Satan also came with them. The Lord said to Satan, “Where have you come from?” Satan answered the Lord, “From roaming throughout the earth, going back and forth on it.”Then the Lord said to Satan, “Have you considered my servant Job? There is no one on earth like him; he is blameless and upright, a man who fears God and shuns evil.” “Does Job fear God for nothing?” Satan replied. “Have you not put a hedge around him and his household and everything he has? You have blessed the work of his hands, so that his flocks and herds are spread throughout the land.  But now stretch out your hand and strike everything he has, and he will surely curse you to your face.” The Lord said to Satan, “Very well, then, everything he has is in your power, but on the man himself do not lay a finger. ”Then Satan went out from the presence of the Lord.

One would ask, why would God do or allow such a thing? Isaiah 55:8-9 For my thoughts are not your thoughts, neither are your ways my ways,”declares the Lord. “As the heavens are higher than the earth, so are my ways higher than your ways and my thoughts than your thoughts.

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The conversation between satan and the Lord was beginning of Job’s misfortunes and affliction. Job lost his cattle, his children, his honour all at once (read Job 1). What amazed me is despite this occurring, Job continued to worship God (Job 1:20-22   At this, Job got up and tore his robe and shaved his head. Then he fell to the ground in worship and said: “Naked I came from my mother’s womb, and naked I will depart The Lord gave and the Lord has taken away; may the name of the Lord be praised.” In all this, Job did not sin by charging God with wrongdoing).

However, this led to the Lord allowing satan to afflict Job for a second time.

Job 2:3-10 Then the Lord said to Satan, “Have you considered my servant Job? There is no one on earth like him; he is blameless and upright, a man who fears God and shuns evil. And he still maintains his integrity, though you incited me against him to ruin him without any reason.”  “Skin for skin!” Satan replied. “A man will give all he has for his own life.  But now stretch out your hand and strike his flesh and bones, and he will surely curse you to your face.”  The Lord said to Satan, “Very well, then, he is in your hands; but you must spare his life. ”So Satan went out from the presence of the Lord and afflicted Job with painful sores from the soles of his feet to the crown of his head. Then Job took a piece of broken pottery and scraped himself with it as he sat among the ashes. His wife said to him, “Are you still maintaining your integrity? Curse God and die!”  He replied, “You are talking like a foolish woman. Shall we accept good from God, and not trouble?” In all this, Job did not sin in what he said.

However, this caused Job great pain and he repetitively cursed his existence on earth. Job 6:8-10 “Oh, that I might have my request, that God would grant what I hope for, that God would be willing to crush me, to let loose his hand and cut off my life! Then I would still have this consolation— my joy in unrelenting pain—that I had not denied the words of the Holy One.

What did Job do to deserve great pain and hardship? In addition to this, he faced shame and even his own wife and friends rejected him during his time of calamity.

Job 19:13-20 “He has alienated my family from me; my acquaintances are completely estranged from me. My relatives have gone away; my closest friends have forgotten me. My guests and my female servants count me a foreigner; they look on me as on a stranger. I summon my servant, but he does not answer, though I beg him with my own mouth. My breath is offensive to my wife; I am loathsome to my own family. Even the little boys scorn me; when I appear, they ridicule me. All my intimate friends detest me; those I love have turned against me. I am nothing but skin and bones; I have escaped only by the skin of my teeth.

Although Job wallowed in self-pity, he did not curse God and Job passed the test of obedience

Job 7:20-21 If I have sinned, what have I done to you, you who see everything we do? Why have you made me your target? Have I become a burden to you? Why do you not pardon my offenses and forgive my sins? For I will soon lie down in the dust; you will search for me, but I will be no more.

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God  promises us that we will reap more than we have lost; all to the glory of His name.

Job 8:7 Your beginnings will seem humble, so prosperous will your future be.

And indeed after God’s purpose was fulfilled in Job’s life, He blessed Job with even more than He had lost out on.

Job 42:11-13 Then came to him all his brothers and sisters and all who had known him before, and ate bread with him in his house. And they showed him sympathy and comforted him for all the evil that the Lord had brought upon him. And each of them gave him a piece of money and a ring of gold. And the Lord blessed the latter days of Job more than his beginning. And he had 14,000 sheep, 6,000 camels, 1,000 yoke of oxen, and 1,000 female donkeys.  He had also seven sons and three daughters.

When I made a list of the hardships I faced in 2015 and compared them to the affliction Job faced, it was incomparable. Let us ask God what lesson He is trying to teach us, what His plan and purpose is for the affliction, rather than complaining and dwelling in self-pity (1 Thessalonians 5:16-18 Rejoice always, pray continually, give thanks in all circumstances; for this is God’s will for you in Christ Jesus).

Like Job, God knew that you would be able to handle the affliction, to pass the test He has set before you. He has placed a hedge of protection over you. No matter what hurdle comes into the path of His servant, you will jump over it victoriously. The book of Job also shows how powerless satan is, and that God Himself has the final say over your life.

Why you? Because God loves you and wants to use your life as a great testimony to others. Why You? Because God has installed greatness into you that will do wonders in His kingdom. Why You? Because you are His entrusted vessel who cannot be broken, and can withstand the challenges life offers. Why You? Because God was confident enough that you would overcome any misfortune that come your way. Why You? Because no plan of the enemy can destroy you, it only makes you stronger!!!

 

Forgiveness after betrayal

Think back at a time in your life when you were betrayed. How did you feel? What type of emotions did you have towards the person who betrayed you? Did you love and embrace them? Did you forgive them? Are you still holding on to the pain in your heart? Recently, I found myself replaying these questions over and over again. I could just not grasp why someone so close to me would betray me- After everything I have done for her”. And even after repetitively declaring that “I had forgiven her”, the anger and bitterness did not fade. In fact, I felt justified to not forgive her or ever speak to her again.

The Lord then convicted me, and reminded me of His own betrayal. The people He loved, prayed for, and walked with  turned their backs on Him, and yet He was blameless. Peter was chosen by Jesus to walk with Him and be a disciple. He knew Jesus personally and witnessed Him proclaiming the good news of the kingdom and healing sickness and diseases (read the book of Matthew). Jesus even healed Peter’s mother in law (Matthew 8:14-15 When Jesus came into Peter’s house, he saw Peter’s mother-in-law lying in bed with a fever.  He touched her hand and the fever left her, and she got up and began to wait on him).

Jesus declared a blessing over Peter’s life (Matthew 16:17-19 Jesus replied, “Blessed are you, Simon son of Jonah, for this was not revealed to you by flesh and blood, but by my Father in heaven. And I tell you that you are Peter, and on this rock I will build my church, and the gates of Hades will not overcome it.  I will give you the keys of the kingdom of heaven; whatever you bind on earth will be bound in heaven, and whatever you loose on earth will be loosed in heaven”).

And Peter was privileged enough to witness supernatural encounters 

(Matthew 17:1-8 After six days Jesus took with him Peter, James and John the brother of James, and led them up a high mountain by themselves.  There he was transfigured before them. His face shone like the sun, and his clothes became as white as the light.  Just then there appeared before them Moses and Elijah, talking with Jesus.Peter said to Jesus, “Lord, it is good for us to be here. If you wish, I will put up three shelters—one for you, one for Moses and one for Elijah.” While he was still speaking, a bright cloud covered them, and a voice from the cloud said, “This is my Son, whom I love; with him I am well pleased. Listen to him! ”When the disciples heard this, they fell facedown to the ground, terrified.  But Jesus came and touched them. “Get up,” he said. “Don’t be afraid.” When they looked up, they saw no one except Jesus).

And after all this, Peter still denied Jesus (Matthew 26:69-75 Now Peter was sitting out in the courtyard, and a servant girl came to him. “You also were with Jesus of Galilee,” she said.But he denied it before them all. “I don’t know what you’re talking about,” he said.Then he went out to the gateway, where another servant girl saw him and said to the people there, “This fellow was with Jesus of Nazareth.”He denied it again, with an oath: “I don’t know the man!”After a little while, those standing there went up to Peter and said, “Surely you are one of them; your accent gives you away.”Then he began to call down curses, and he swore to them, “I don’t know the man! Immediately a rooster crowed. Then Peter remembered the word Jesus had spoken: “Before the rooster crows, you will disown me three times.” And he went outside and wept bitterly).

In addition to this, His other disciple Judas betrayed Him  (read the book of Matthew) and yet Jesus still referred to Him as His friend (Matthew 26:47-50 And while He was still speaking, behold, Judas, one of the twelve, with a great multitude with swords and clubs, came from the chief priests and elders of the people. Now His betrayer had given them a sign, saying, “Whomever I kiss, He is the One; seize Him.”  Immediately he went up to Jesus and said, “Greetings, Rabbi!” and kissed Him.But Jesus said to him, “Friend, why have you come? ”Then they came and laid hands on Jesus and took Him).

How many of us would love, embrace and forgive someone after encountering all this pain and hardship and still call them our friend? My prayer for us today is that God gives us the grace to be more Christ-like and have a more forgiving heart. Let our eyes be fixed on Him and not humans, who will let us down- as HE never will.

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Forgiveness after betrayal- prayer

Dear heavenly Father,

I thank You for this time and for allowing me to come into Your presence. I thank You for my life and that of my loved ones. Thank You that though I am a sinner, You still chose to love me. I repent of all the sins that I have committed, knowing and unknowingly. I pray that You will have mercy upon me. Father, there are many emotions I am feeling concerning the betrayal of (state the person’s name). My prayer is that You will help me to forgive him/her. Forgiveness does not come naturally, and I pray that You will give me the grace to forgive (Matthew 18:21-22). I pray that You will heal me from this experience and help me to let go. Teach me to fix my eyes on You and not on man. Help me to put my trust in You, knowing that You will not disappoint me. Help me to acknowledge that (state the person’s name) is human and not perfect. Thank You for allowing me to go through experience. I believe something good will come out of this. I pray for (state the person’s name) that You will forgive him/her and have mercy upon his/her life. I speak Your blessings over (state the person’s name) life and that You will meet his/her needs. I pray that I will embrace (state the person’s name) and see him/her the way You do. I come against any lie of the enemy, any spirit of unforgiveness, bitterness and anger in the name of Jesus. I pray that I will only declare blessings over (state the person’s name) and not curses. In Jesus name, AMEN.

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Seasonal people

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The year 2015 has been a year of rearrangement, growth and isolation for me during my Christian walk; in particular, concerning the people in my life. The Lord has rearranged my friendship circle, brought individuals who have helped me spiritually grow, and kept me isolated to spend more time with Him.

The discontinuity within friendships is never an easy one to comprehend: in particular, when God mysteriously removes people from our lives. One wonders: “Why would God remove this person? We have been friends forever”. These friends are seasonal and have fulfilled the purpose God had for them in your life. When this disconnection occurs, one may feel a number of negative emotions. However, remember that God knows what He is doing and sees ahead of time (Isaiah 46:10 “I make known the end from the beginning, from ancient times, what is still to come. I say, ‘My purpose will stand, and I will do all that I please”). In addition to this, rearrangements allow us to move unto the next stage in our lives without hindrances.

Not long ago, I went through one of the most difficult seasons I have ever witnessed in my life. I was being tested in every area of my life and unable to cope. It was as if God was playing hide and seek with me and the trials and tribulations of this world had really gotten to me. I had not guarded my heart and the deceits of this world had started to creep in. I had gotten to a place where I was so overwhelmed and asked God to take me home (thank God He doesn’t answer all our prayers). But I remembered what Jesus did when the trials of this world got to Him (Mark 14:36 “Abba, Father, he cried out, everything is possible for you. Please take this cup of suffering away from me. Yet I want your will to be done, not mine).

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So I cried unto the Lord and asked Him to give me the grace to keep walking. And out of the blue, people started calling me saying that God had placed it unto their hearts to pray for me. Others had visions and dreams of my pain. These individuals were not my usual friends or people I would usually turn to in tough times. In fact, those people actually turned their back on me during this season. The individuals God sent were seasonal people, who helped me overcome the battles and pass the test.

Recently, I was not feeling too well and spent the day at the hospital. Unable to walk properly and in excruciating pain, I decided to download the UBER app to take a taxi home. However, for some reason the app refused to fully download and kept freezing at 2%. I turned my phone on and off, sat in various positions to get reception (though I had full reception) and it refused to load. I decided to give up and cross the road and take a bus home. In the far distance, I saw a lady cross over the road and walk towards me. Upon arrival she said: “ Excuse me, the Lord has told me you are in pain and that I need to give you a lift home”. I was in so much shock “Could this really have been God?”. I decided to take the leap of faith and went along with her to her car. I sat next to her daughter who was about 7-8. I asked her what her name was and she said Vanessa Anne (my full name is Vanessa Annelies). At this moment it hit me that God was with me, in fact He never left!

I just want to encourage you today to keep pressing on and keep walking. Our Christian walk is packaged with many challenges, but God will always bring someone to pray for you or use them to show you that He is still with you. Thank God for the people He has brought, the people He has taken away and the seasonal people He is bringing to help you reach your destiny.

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Seasonal people – pointers

  • Do not be upset when people leave your life, they have fulfilled their purpose.
  • Allow God to rearrange your friendship circle, He knows what is best for you.
  • Do not look at people you have helped to stand there with you during difficult times. God will send His seasonal people to stand with You.
  • Periods of alone-time are good, it allows you to hear God’s voice more clearly and have an intimate relationship with God.
  • When times are tough, look unto God and not unto man (1 Samuel 30:6 David was greatly distressed because the men were talking of stoning him; each one was bitter in spirit because of his sons and daughters. But David found strength in the LORD his God).
  • People will always disappoint you, but God never will (Psalm 118:8-9 It is better to take refuge in the Lord than to trust in humans. It is better to take refuge in the Lord than to trust in princes).
  • Guard your heart (Proverbs 4:23 Guard your heart above all else, for it determines the course of your life).
  • Focus on God and all things will fall into place (Colossians 3:2 Set your minds on things above, not on earthly things).
  • You are not forgotten and God has placed you unto the hearts of His servants to intercede for you (Galatians 6:2 Carry each other’s burdens, and in this way you will fulfill the law of Christ).
  • Ask God what He is trying to teach You in this season and ask Him help you to pass the test.
  • Strive to please God and not man. All other things will fall into place (Matthew 6:33 But seek ye first the kingdom of God, and his righteousness; and all these things shall be added unto you).Phonto (1)

A prayer of healing

Can God really heal? I pondered on this question for most of my Christian life. Are the testimonies we see were people “proclaim” they were healed by the Holy Spirit real? Is the same God who healed in the biblical days still able to perform miraculous healings? One will never know the answers until they fully surrender healing to the Lord.

I prayed but the person still died, why didn’t God heal them? (Isaiah 55:8 “For my thoughts are not your thoughts, neither are your ways my ways,” declares the LORD). In such situations, we thank the Lord that the individual has received eternal life and no longer has to suffer on earth.

Phonto

During the early days of my Christian walk, my father (see the blog post: Rejected but not forgotten) was diagnosed with a brain tumour. It was a very difficult time for me as I had just entered into adolescence and had only met him once at the age of 8. Growing up, I had a lot of resentment towards him for not playing an active role in my upbringing. I never expected that the next time I would see him that he would be lifeless using an oxygen mask. A few days prior to his operation, he called me and said “Vanessa, you are still so young and I didn’t see you grow up. I am not sure I will make it through this operation”. I remember spontaneously responding: “daddy you will be fine”. After the operation, we were informed that my father’s operation was successful and the tumour was removed.

However, he was in a coma and on life support. I was in the Netherlands at the time on holiday and my family took me to Universität zu Lübeck, Germany where he was. I remember seeing him for the second time after 6 years: tubes around his face and wearing an oxygen mask. I remember touching him and thanking God he was still warm and alive. I never knew that the next time I would see him; he would be in this kind of state. After the visit, my family sat me down and told me I needed to be strong and explained that the doctors where planning on taking him off life support the following week.

I remember thinking to myself: I refuse to be fatherless at this age, I want to have peace with my father. I want to forgive him, get to know him and give our relationship another chance”. At that point, I went on my knees, I don’t exactly remember the words I uttered. But I begged God not to take him. I grew up having a lot of bitterness  towards him for not being an active person in my life. I asked God to forgive me. My only prayer was that he would wake up, and that God would allow me to get to know him. I didn’t want my father to pass away without me ever knowing him. I never told anyone I said that prayer until recently. However, God was faithful and my dad woke up from his coma the following day and they took him off life support.

We went back to Universität zu Lübeck, and it was amazing seeing my father alive: talking, smiling and saying how tall I had become. Three years later, God fulfilled my prayer request and my father asked me if I could come and stay with him and get to know him. I stayed with him for 10 months. Less than a year after that, he passed away. I will always be grateful to God that He allowed me to get to know my father. It was not the most pleasant experience but it allowed me to fill a gap in my heart that I had desired for all my life. Also, I thank God for being merciful for extending his life for 5 extra years after the brain tumour- all glory to Jesus.

If there is a loved one you are believing God for to heal, don’t give up. Surrender them to the Father, He is still able. However, also acknowledge that it is His desire for us to join Him in heaven and that the greatest prayer You can pray for their salvation.

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A prayer of healing

Dear heavenly Father,

I thank You for everything that You have done in my life and continue to do. Thank You for waking me up today, for I know it was by Your grace. I come before You and repent of my sins. I repent for the sins I have committed knowingly and unknowingly. I pray that You will cleanse me with Your blood and forgive me. Today, I bring before you (state the persons name). Lord, I know that is Your desire for good things to happen in our lives (Jeremiah 29:11 For I know the thoughts that I think toward you, saith the LORD, thoughts of peace, and not of evil, to give you an expected end). I pray Lord, that You will heal (state the persons name) in the name of Jesus. For in Your word it states that by Your stripes we are healed (Isaiah 53:5). I pray today that Your healing power will manifest in (state the persons name) and that they will testify of your goodness in the land of the living. I pray for (state the persons name)’s salvation, that they will acknowledge You as their Lord and saviour. I pray that You will deliver them from the hand of the enemy and may Your angels protect them from all evil. I speak Your favour over (state the persons name)’s life. I also pray that Your perfect will be done in (state the persons name)’s life and may it be all for Your glory. In Jesus name we pray, AMEN

Phono