Miracle Deliverance From Injustice and Captivity
In the past twelve years of ministry to the people of God, I have encountered people in trouble with just about every affliction and attack possible. I have counseled, prayed for and taught hundreds and hundreds, yet never before have I been so grieved about the condition of God's children. Never before have I witnessed such discouragement, weariness and hopelessness. People who are seemingly doing everything in obedience to the admonition of the scripture who are loving God and serving Him out of pure hearts. Even though I am witness to God answering prayers all over the world, via this ministry over the Internet, I am also sensing in the spirit realm tremendous travail and transition for most people. I want to encourage you not to give up. As the scriptures warn us, satan knows that his time is short and he is unleashing more pressure than ever before to try to discourage us and get us out of faith in our God. No matter what is happening in your life, I want to remind you that God is greater and God is on YOUR side. He is actively involved in your life to the degree that you desire and allow Him to be. The power available to you to overcome any and all opposition is unmatchable. God's peace is no match for satan's pressure! Just like it is impossible to have faith when you are in a fearful spirit, it is impossible to have peace when you have pressure on your mind and emotions.
I cannot admonish you this way without giving you some evidence that I am a credible teacher that practices what she teaches. This is why I sense that I am suppose to tell you about the pain and tribulation that my children and I have had to endure for the past ten years. I have no desire to give testimony to the negative, but rather to tell you enough that you will understand where we have been and how far God's love has carried us. We know firsthand about pain, loneliness, heartache, loss, abuse, discouragement and sadness. We know all about injustice, betrayal and being falsely accused. We know about rejection - even from our 'Christian' friends. We know about oppression, captivity, bondage and helplessness. In other words, I can relate to just about anything that you are going through and have a word today that will help you.
After 16 years of marriage, my husband suddenly left me for another woman. We had been in the ministry together for nearly 14 years and were actively pursuing the plan of God for our lives. Our son was four and our daughter nearly two years old. I had recently made an entry in my daily prayer journal that "I never knew life could be so satisfying". Only if you have personally experienced the turbulence of pain, betrayal, anger, rejection and so forth, could you understand what hell on earth this type of experience entails. One month after his adultery was exposed, I found out that I was pregnant with our third child. I still shake my head in total bewilderment that I actually lived through that first year. It is only by the grace of God. I hurt so badly that I thought I was dying. I wanted to die. I wanted to escape the pain any way that I could. I knew there was no way to live with such pain. God had His hand on my life though and we did live. He made Himself so obvious to me during those early days as I pressed into Him more than ever before. I have awesome testimonies to tell of His divine intervention into our lives. He sustains us while we wait for the time and season of His promise.
After giving birth, my husband filed an emergency measure with the court, to take the kids away from me. Based solely on his ability to provide greater financial stability, the Judge granted him not only the kids, but the house and all of our possessions as well. I suddenly found myself homeless; no car, no job. Nothing but a broken heart and aching arms crying out to be filled with my children. Again, I know beyond any doubt that the only way that I lived through that terror was the Lord's hand on my life. It would have been more reasonable for me to be in a mental hospital or a graveyard then to be here telling our story to you. You see I took my position as a mama very seriously and loved my family exceedingly. It was pain enough that my husband no longer wanted me, but when he took my babies (Katie was only 6 weeks old) I experienced such emotions that I never knew existed.
I went through the valley of the shadow of death, where I had tremendous fears of evil. Nothing seemed to be going my way. Everything seemed to explode around me. Nothing was working the way God's Word said it would work. I could rarely find God. It took months of flailing before I was able to stabilize and receive the heavenly help and healing that the Lord gave me. It would take pages that I don't have in this newsletter, to adequately portray what a meager existence I lived during these times. I found out that faith must be there when there is no evidence of God even hearing a prayer. Faith that scriptures were true and that God was Who He said He was. That He was doing what He said He would do. That I was who He said I was and that I could have all that He said I could have. If I was going to call Him Lord I had to trust Him to be Lord of everything.
Nine long years ago, the Lord promised me that He would release my children from captivity and would bring them back again into my home. In the middle of every circumstance and every word that the enemy was speaking, I had to resist and stop the attack by focusing on the Word of God. It was not easy. It took tenacity, perseverance, discipline and total trust in God to make good on His promise, to see me through the years of our imprisonment. The scripture the Holy Spirit reminded me of when I first heard the devastating news of the losses was from Habakkuk 3:17-19 Amplified Bible:
"Though the fig tree does not blossom and there is no fruit on the vine, though the product of the olive fails and the fields yield no food, though the flock is cutoff from the fold and there are no cattle in the stalls. Yet I will rejoice in the Lord; I will exult in the victorious God of my salvation! The Lord God is my strength, my personal bravery and my invincible army; He makes my feet like hinds' feet and will make me to walk (not stand still in terror but to walk) and make spiritual progress upon my high places of trouble, suffering or responsibility!"
This is the secret to our getting safely through the 'perilous times'. Taking a position of faith in God that is not moved by the way things look, feel or seem to be. Isaiah 26:3,4 (Amplified Bible) says:
"You will guard and keep him in perfect and constant peace whose mind (both its inclination and its character) is stayed on You, leans on You, and hopes confidently in You."
Keeping our eyes on Him alone. These are words that we hear often but it is easier said than done. It calls for crucifixion of the flesh - the 'lower nature' that the scripture refers to. The part of us that demands our own way and it better happen in a hurry or else. Most believers think they live by faith, but they falter if circumstances don't change or if they worsen, within the time frame of their mental reasoning. The testimony of Joseph and his longsuffering in the long years of his imprisonment was so encouraging to me. I read it over and over and over again to give me courage. I knew I could make it too, with the help of my God.
It is not necessary to write you the details of the severe oppression that we have endured - the 29 court appearances, over $25,000 in attorney fees, a bogus psychiatric evaluation, being publicly turned away from my child's theatre production at school, of the shame and humiliation that seemed to haunt at every turn. There were the odd looks from people in the church, the quick changes of a conversation when people realized you could hear, the questioning looks in my children's eyes. My list could go on and on. But I know you are getting the picture. The knowledge of the pain that my children were going through was the worse suffering that I had.
It was here that I really learned how far my trust in God had to take me. To know that He was just as much God when they were with me than when they were away. The Lord reminded me of the story of Hannah praying for a son. God answered her and she gave birth to Samuel. When he was still a young boy, she honored her commitment to God and gave her son to the service of the Lord in the temple. The priest was Eli. He was the father of two sons. Eli was a weak father and he allowed his sons to do whatever they wanted. They desecrated God's Holy temple with the vilest of activity. Yet Eli looked the other way. Finally God judged Eli for his failure to parent his sons, allowing the sons to be killed in battle and ending Eli's life prematurely for his disobedience. Yet it was here that Samuel was raised. A priest, pure and holy. A young man that heard from God in a time when God rarely spoke. A boy that grew to be a faithful man of God even when raised by the worst. The Lord told me it was because his mother had learned the power of prayer and it was her continued prayers for her young son that shielded him through the worst of circumstances. I think Samuel learned how to be a leader to the rebellious house of Israel by learning from Eli's mistakes. This testimony too gave me strength, because I knew that my prayers availed much on behalf of my children. I knew that they would come through the fire without burns, scorches or even the smell.
Now, I've shared this testimony from time to time in ministry and many of you already know much of what we live with. It has been difficult to preach and teach the love of God and of His desire to heal the broken hearted and set the captive free when my personal life had such evidence of captivity. In spite of the contradiction I know in my heart and mind it is already done - it is already settled. I have been able to get on with my life knowing that at any moment my children will be living with me once more. I love life and live it to the fullest. Experiencing peace, joy and contentment. It is no longer me that lives, but Christ in me. As I go about ministering to others I receive the greatest blessings.
It is with the greatest of pleasure and in giving of thanks to our Father and the Lord Jesus, that I am able to now start the final chapter of our story, with the return of Winston and Whitney (my two oldest children) to my household within the past few weeks. Glory to God for a sudden move that brought about this change! And with the victory, our enemy has turned up the pressures even more - with two wasp stings under my eye, broken eye glasses, a broken water pump on my car, the freezer quitting and food spoiling, strained relationships, more bills than money, oppressive heat, temptations and fears of failure...and that's just the past three days! I tell you this to say that the troubles will never end, not for us, not for you. There will never be anything but short relief from the storms of life for any of us. And if we are forever waiting for that magical day to arrive, we will live our lives in wasted expectations. It is not so much WHAT is happening as to what you chose to do about it. You see, when I started this newsletter last month (the first two pages) I did not know that within a few days the tables would be turned and I would have two of my children returning to me. My faith in God and my rejoicing in all that He is doing is a continual and constant factor that has become a way of life for me. My boast is not in myself, but to boast of the grace of my God. And with the gain of two of my three children to my home once more, my faith that the Lord will complete the work of restoration and the unification of my family remains strong. There are many more obstacles to get around and some are ones we've never had to face before. But in all these things I am confident that the Lord is in control, that He leads and guides us and that He is faithful to finish all that He has started.
In the circumstances and painful experiences of your life you must trust God and be obedient to Him. "Weeping may last all night, but in the morning there is joy!" Above all else, trust His love for you and abide in His perfect and lasting peace. Refuse to give in. Refuse to give up. Do not grow weary for in due season you shall reap! In this season of the harvest, this time of Jubilee, we must persevere at all costs. The harvest will come!
Last week, completing a year and a half of more court hearings, more psychiatric evaluations, court ordered counselors and therapists, hiring an attorney to represent my children, having to suffer additional pain in not seeing my youngest daughter for over six months and denied any access to speak with her, the court handed down a very disappointing decision. The specialists felt it was in the best interest of Katie to leave her status quo, giving her limited visitation with her brother, sister and me. Devastated with the obvious suffering of Katie especially, I again turned loose of any control and gave the matter over completely to God for His divine intervention. Katie expressed nothing but strong desires to be united with us, yet out of 'fairness' these adults entrusted to protect her, did not care. Splitting up the kids seemed the rational solution to them. Deeply moved with compassion for her, very angry at the incompetence of these bureaucrats and the continued injustice of the court system, I made a demand on the power of God. Either I am empowered to set the captives free or I'm not. Either the power of heaven is on my side or it isn't. While throwing rocks into the river, I felt a righteous indignation come up from deep within me. "I refuse to live this way another day! There is no way this is going to continue! Either I am a child of Almighty God and His power is here to deliver my family, or it isn't. But if all that I believe is true, then this is the final word. I refuse to live without my daughter for another day! I have put my confidence in God and in God alone." Following the leading of His Spirit, I began to pray the love of God on all those that did not know what they were doing, when they made this decision. I forgave and I released them from this sin. For those that consciously sinned against God's will, I prayed for Holy Spirit conviction that they would turn and repent. But I made sure that my heart was right before God. Absolutely refusing to turn loose, I hung onto God for a miraculous turn of events. Within 24 hours, Katie's attorney was on the phone to me . very sheepish, very humiliated, he stated that Katie's dad had 'changed his mind' and decided that he did not want Katie after all. Katie was coming to live with us! And that quick, after all those years of tolerating that ungodly situation, my children and I were reunited completely! Praise God for the leading of His Spirit and our ability to hear and follow!
We have absolutely flourished in our relationships with each other as we stand in testimony to the power of God's divine intervention! Enjoying the freedom and liberty that is sweeter to those once bound and held captive. Free from court rule ~ free from worldly oppression ~ free from violent and perverse men. Thank God for where we have come from that has helped to make and mold us into who we are today! Alive and well, serving God with all our hearts, in love and devotion to one another. Grateful, thankful and extremely appreciative that we serve a God Who is alive and well and deeply interested in the lives of His dear children. We stand as a memorial along the way, to remind people that put their trust in God that He is faithful and just. He is a rewarder to them that diligently seek Him. Even when ten years ~ eleven years ~ twelve years go by without seeing His hand. We never wavered or quit in our faith that God would see us through. If we could do it then you can do it. We have not been given any power or ability that is not available to you as well. Constant and consistent in our faith walk. Knowing that God is well able to keep that which we commit unto Him.