Thursday, October 9, 2008

Three Simple Words...

Trust in God. Three simple words, yet the most challenging words at times. Why is that? I know it's because we're human and all, but really? When we are young children we are totally dependent and trusting of our parents, yet when we get older, we sometimes find trusting in God to be challenging. Maybe it's fear of the unknown, or not being able to control certain outcomes, maybe both. Maybe some people don't really know the power of God. I have a couple of events that have happened in my life that I would like to share. They all took place at a prayer group at St. Mary's. Here's my stories....
I have been brought up Catholic and I am very comfortable in the Catholic ways meaning the gifts of the Holy Spirit. My grandfather use to be a deacon at St. Mary's and I often heard him and my grandmother speak in tongues, so this was the usual for me. In the summer of 2007, I began to regularly attend charasmatic prayer meetings at the church that my parent's lead, however we all knew God was the actual leader. All they do at these prayer meetings is sing praises to God, and after each song, whomever feels lead to do so will speak in tongues, sometimes prophecize and sometimes decipher the prophecy. This one evening, I began to pray aloud in tongues. (I believe that God gives us the gift of tongues as a way that our inner spirit can express or talk to the Holy Spirit in the most intitmate way possible.) As I was doing so, a picture came to my mind. It was very clear, yet I kept thinking that my contacts were messing up, you know, trying to make a scientific reason for what I was seeing. In my picture was a beach. It was sunset and I could clearly see the sand. I saw footprints in the sand and a man walking down the beach. The man was wearing some type of cloak or robe. Also, there was a dove flying in the distance. I could see the waves slowly coming to shore as it was an extremely peaceful evening. I kept asking myself, why am I seeing this picture? Am I making it up or what? At that exact moment, I heard my dad's voice and he began to describe a picture, or vision as he called it, of the exact same beach, sunset, sand with footprints and dove and the man walking. I began to burst in uncontrollable tears for at that moment I knew that God was using me as his tool. At that moment I had God's full attention and he had mine, simultaneously. My dad went on to say these words: "Follow in my footsteps and I will give you peace." I was balling like baby so much that I couldn't even utter a confirmation that I had seen the same vision. Soon after that moment, a lady began to talk and explained that she felt that God was using those words to talk to her for she was going through a rough time in her life. I will never forget that evening.
The second most unforgetable evening I had at this prayer group came a couple of months later. For this meeting, some of the Sisters from Prayer Town were able to attend. We began to sing songs of praise and at the end of one particular song, I felt lead to speak in tongues. As I did another vision came to me and this time I knew I better speak aloud of it because it could mean something to someone else, or confirm what someone else is seeing themselves. After I described what I had seen, a couple of the other Sister's confirmed what I had seen, and then gave even more detail and they hit my vision right on the money. We had all seen a picture of a river or stream, flowing peacefully, and a lady sitting in the shade under a tree, and she was drinking from the river. After we had prayed a little bit on this vision, a lady in the room said she felt lead to read the following verse from John 7:38 Anyone who believes in me may come and drink! For the Scriptures declare, ‘Rivers of living water will flow from his heart.’” [ Or “Let anyone who is thirsty come to me and drink. 38For the Scriptures declare, ‘Rivers of living water will flow from the heart of anyone who believes in me.’”] WOW! THAT WAS TOTALLY AMAZING!!! I was so overflowed with joy and happiness and I was so humbled that God would use me, of all people, me, as his tool. Why me? Later that evening we were given an opportunity to go and pray with a Sister and a couple others, for whatever we needed prayer for. By this time I was completely broken, so I thought. Up until this night, I had been carrying around baggage from my past. You see, I had made a choice in my life when I was a teenager that I didn't need to wait until I was married to have sex. My friends were doing it, and they seemed fine, so why couldn't I? After all, this would show my boyfriend that I really did love him if I gave him the very most of me. After losing my virginity I soon realized that by giving him the most of me, I felt like I had lost a huge part of me. From that point, I somewhat spiralled down further and further from "me". TV portrays sex as not an intimate time between a husband and a wife, but rather catagorizes it the same as chewing a piece of gum, or driving a car, it's something everyone does and it's not that big of a deal. That's so sad.
Ohh how I was carrying around that guilt 10 years later. I felt that because of choices I had made in my past, I was being punished at that time. That's hard for me to explain to you, but maybe you understand what I'm trying to express. I walked into the room and the Sister asked me what I needed prayer for. I hesitated because I was with my dad and my grandpa who is a retired deacon, and I didn't know the Sister either so sharing something so intimate was a challenge. So I thought I'll leave it vague, I'll ask for guidance. So that's what I did. Then the Sister and my dad and my grandpa placed there hands on me and began to pray over me in tongues. I also opened my hands and began to pray the tongues my heavenly Father gave me. Then all of a sudden I began to cry and I felt so unworthy of this prayer. I wanted to get out of that chair, leave that room and pretend none of this had ever happened, but I felt glued to the chair, I couldn't get up, my body felt so heavy. I began to cry even more as I realized God had me right where me wanted me, truely broken. I began to have flashbacks of the choices I made 10 years prior and began to feel so ashamed and dirty. Just then the Sister stopped praying in tongues and said aloud," Brandy, why are you crying tears of sadness? Cry tears of joy for the Lord says for you have been forgiven by Him. You have to forgive yourself. The Lord doesn't want you to be burdened by these mistakes of the past any more. He wants you to rejoice in his presence, have a peace about the past because he has forgiven you. He forgave you a long time ago. He loves you Brandy. No more tears of sadness but tears of joy for you have been forgiven." (Now, can you explain to me how a woman I had never met knew that I needed to hear those exact words whenever I asked for a prayer of guidance?? Truely a miracle from God.) I wept even more but it was like a peaceful cry. Then my dad's hand and my grandpa's hand grew hot to the touch, felt like someone was putting heat pad on my head and on my shoulder where they were touching me. And just like that, I felt a sense of freedom I hadn't felt in 10 years. I felt so light, as if I was no longer glued to that chair and about to fly away, but the hands of the Sister and my dad and grandpa were holding me down. I felt a surge of calmingness flow through my body. I could smell the spirit, feel the spirit all around and inside of me. I came to the realization that it was Satan that had been controlling my feelings of being punished in the present day for my sins of the past. Once I realized that, the bars were broken and I could then begin to rebuild a relationship with myself and love myself again because God still loved me and had forgiven me years ago, why couldn't I do the same for me? Afterall, we all know that we can only love others as much as we love ourselves. I walked out of that prayer meeting a new woman. I now hold my head higher and my's so much more than I could've ever imagined. My faith and trust in God has gotten me through some tough times I've encountered this past year. Trust in God.....three simple words I now understand. God Bless.

Thursday, October 2, 2008

So here's Thursday and I am looking positive towards a Friday:) This week actually flew by for me. I think it's cause we've had something to do every night this week instead of our usual go home and rest after school. My oldest son got his report card yesterday. I was really nervous to look at it considering the grades he was bringing home. Much to my delightful surprise, he had A's and B's. I was soo proud of him and I could tell he was proud of himself too. He also got the balls to pull out this tooth that had been dangling for quite some time now. He was so scared to pull it out because he thought it might hurt, he cried the entire time he was trying to yank it. After 45 minutes of debating about it, he finally did it. In the meantime, my daughter was in the background telling "R" (my oldest son) to quit being a baby and just pull it out cause she didn't cry at all when her's came out. It was kind of humorous.
Well I seem to have somewhat of a block of what to say today. God Bless.