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A Hair Raising Experience

A Simple Walk to the Park

I talked a couple of weeks ago about healthy and unhealthy fear. Earlier this week I had a hair-raising experience which refers to both kinds. See what you think.

I’ve been playing nanny to my three little grandchildren. On the way to the park I had the eight-month-old in the stroller, the two-year-old in tow right behind it between me and the stroller, and the three-year-old was hanging on to the front right side. We’d had a pleasant morning and going to the park was a joy for all of us. I’d taken the family shelty along on a short leash.

Just a few houses from the park entrance, I saw a middle-aged man approaching us with a German Shepherd dog. The dog looked young and untrained since the man seemed barely able to control it. As they approached we halted and moved over to accommodate them.

The fellow did not give us a wide berth as they approached us. He was too close and his dog was too strong for him. The shepherd came alongside of the stroller, snarled and lunged open mouth at our dog, with the two-year old in between. Using my legs as a shield, the two-year-old bumped into the back of the stroller. Our dog, Thor, met the challenge with his own snarls and snapping rage. The three-year-old stayed where he was, hand on stroller. The dog’s mouth brushed my legs and the stranger yanked hard on his leash, and no one was hurt. The potential danger passed and I stood frozen in shock and distress.

The three-year-old broke me out of my freeze mode when he asked, “Can we go to the park and play now?” We were all back in motion and the boys romped along to the park as though it was just another day.

When I arrived at the park near the play zone, I was shaking. I attached Thor to the park bench, checked on the baby who was content in her stroller, and let the boys play in front of me on the slide and climbing structure. At that point I melted in tears and called my praying friend.

The Prayer Time

My prayer friend, Karin, is a gifted compassionate woman who prays for the healing of many. She has been trained in many methods of healing prayer and has more experience than most as she works as a full time missionary to the inner city. When she picked up the phone that day, she heard the distress in my voice and excused herself from where she was and took herself to a private place.

As I was blubbering about the dog into the phone, she was praying for guidance and listening for clues about what the problem was. With my eyes wide open on the boys playing in front of me, I managed to get the story out. In and of itself it was a shocking situation, but I’d been bitten by a dog only a few years ago and the memory was still vivid and I had the scar to prove it.

As we prayed through the former incident, I saw the Lord push me out of the snarling dog’s reach. It had only snagged my calf and drew blood. It had not gotten a grip of my leg. That would have been much worse. Then the Lord told me that the occurrence was over and would not happen again. I gave the Lord my fear, my shock and I forgave the owners who allowed that to happen. I released every part of the pain to the Lord to carry for me and He gave me peace about it.

From there we looked at the apparent attack by the German Shepherd. Again, I saw the Lord push me between the child and Thor (our dog) and the stranger’s dog. One angel grabbed the man and his leash and yanked his dog back from us and sent them on their way. Another guarded our back. Again, I forgave the man for not controlling his dog and for not giving us enough space as he walked around us when we were stopped to let him pass. I gave the Lord my fear, my shock and confusion. He gave me peace.

At that point I saw something new in the spirit. It’s like God just pulled back a curtain and there were angels playing with the boys. There were guards all around. There was even an angel cooing to the baby, and the Lord sat beside me on the bench. He reminded me of the first time I saw angels. At that time, I asked why they were there as I saw many in and around my home. He told me that they were there to protect His interests in my family. What a wonder, that God should have an interest in our family. I felt safe and secure and loved.

By then I was ok and very grateful for Karin’s availability and we said goodbye. I continued to talk with the Lord about our family and I had a sweet time with Him. During the entire hour we were in the park, only one person walked through it and did not glance our way. The boys were both ready to return home at the same time and none of the children seemed the least bit perturbed by the earlier incident.

My Prayer for You

Would that everyone had a friend like Karin. It is my prayer for you that as you go through life, you will find Jesus to be your best friend and that He will add people to you who are so much like Him that you feel very safe in their presence knowing that they are connected enough to the Lord that they can help you to hear from him when you find it difficult. May you be able to find such a friend that you can call on in a time of crisis who you know will seek the Lord’s guidance and then pray for you. I pray too that you might become such a friend as well.

Freedom from Fear

Fear is that four letter word that can keep us from so many benefits in life. Although fear is intended to protect us from physical danger, out of its normal function it can prevent us from taking emotional risks that will not harm our physical bodies. That kind of fear is based on our belief that we believe will be hurt beyond what we can bear.

Have you heard the acronym FEAR is False Evidence Appearing Real? As I have dealt with many fearful people in my years as a Healing Prayer Specialist, I have hundreds of stories of people overcoming fears based on false beliefs. There are three stories that come immediately to mind.

I’ve found that many men particularly have a difficult time expressing feelings. Sometimes this can cause serious problems in their relationships. Because three men’s stories are similar I will describe them as one whole composite.  Their common problem was not a refusal to share their emotional selves with their wives, but that they simply were not in touch with their feelings at all.

We will call this fellow Jackson since I don’t know anyone by that name. Jackson’s wife brought him to the prayer team because she was desperate to experience a fuller relationship with her husband. They had been married ten to twenty years and in all that time she had never seen him angry, sad, laugh out loud or cry. All he ever did was smile and talk in a relatively mono tonal voice. His countenance never changed even when their daughter was diagnosed with a serious illness and his parents had died.

She wanted his support in their time of crisis and she didn’t feel supported when he couldn’t share his emotions on what mattered to them. She left her husband with me and my teammate and went elsewhere to pray.

The Conversation We Began

As we talked about her concerns he sat casually with his arm hung over the back of the chair and one leg crossed over the other. His tone was easy going and the smile on his face never changed. We talked about several moments in their lives when one might have experienced pain. They had experienced two miscarriages before their first child was born. They had a loss of job, a house fire and most recently the diagnoses of very serious consequences for their daughter who was a teenager. All of these situations he spoke about as if they were simply circumstances in a fiction book and of no consequence.

I asked him if he felt any emotion at the time of the incidents. “No,” he replied. “That’s why I’m here, isn’t it?”

Next, I asked him, “Are you willing to explore where your emotions are?”

“Sure,” was the easy reply. “Oh, there they are,” mildly surprised, “They are in the basement behind a locked door.”

“Are you willing to open the door?” I asked.

“Yes, but I can’t. It’s locked,” was the reply.

“According to the Truth, who has the key?”

“Why I do,” he said, again mildly surprised, but smiling in the same manner.

“What do you believe might happen if you opened the door to your emotions?” I asked him.

The Surprising Answer to His Question

He looked at me and paused, clearly thinking. I waited. Then he told me of the last time he let himself express his emotions when he was with his dad as a boy. His dad had sharply reprimanded him for being so emotional and told him to never be a crybaby again. He believed that any emotion was bad and that if he got emotional, he was bad.

We asked the Lord for His truth in the matter. He was assured that emotions did not make a person bad. All of a sudden, Jackson looked at me and said, “I can open the door now. I’m ready.”

I waited for him to act on his statement and watched his face as his eyes swept back and forth. He looked puzzled, then happy, then a bit confused then a huge smile swept across is face. He took a deep breath then looked back at me.

“Would you mind telling me what just happened?” I asked.

“Don’t you know?”  he seemed surprised.

“No, this is your experience not mine.”

“Oh,” pause. “Well I didn’t experience what I expected.”

“What did you expect?” I asked.

“I expected to be overwhelmed by a flood of emotions” he responded.

“What did you get instead?”

Again he smiled broadly. “I got peace…. and a little bit of joy. It makes me want to giggle like a school girl.” at which point he threw his head back and laughed out loud. As he recovered from that, he grew more serious and said, “I got the impression that it’s ok to laugh and cry. I also got the impression that our daughter will be ok. There is a treatment plan in place and we will all be ok now.”

The Aftermath of Truth

Weeks passed before I saw Jackson again. His wife was with him and she was smiling broadly. They were in a giant mall walking hand in hand down the way. His face was animated as they were in conversation and they waved at me from a distance.

As I said this is a composite of three different men. Most times I do not get to see the results in the lives of most recipients of this type of prayer, but one of them, I did. Seeing the resulting change in a relationship because of healing makes my ministry very rewarding.