I am telling you about a four-day healing prayer conference I attended last July in Wheaton, Illinois. It’s the Ministries of Pastoral Care conference associated with writer Leanne Payne.
These are the major points I learned there, which I think may be of interest to others in reformed, somewhat intellectual churches such as mine.
The worship time was amazing. Hours would go by and I didn’t notice. It was like taking a shower in the Holy Spirit. Now, worship at my church is nice, but it’s not like this. So what can I take away from that to apply to my home church?
- God made us to think in symbols. During the Reformation, we threw out most of our symbols because they had become idols. But we still need symbols. In any worship situation, you could focus on something that could symbolize God or Jesus to you. It could be a cross, or if there isn’t one, perhaps a window where light is pouring in. Of course we must never revere the symbol, just what it symbolizes.
- Repentance beforehand is essential. Our Holy Spirit receptors are blunted. I need to go through my litany of habitual sins ahead of time and ask the Lord to forgive me. Daily!
- We are made for God. We are able to sense His presence, if the veil between us is lifted a little bit. I could feel tingling in my palms as I lifted them during worship. We can pray for the Lord to lift the veil, during that time and place.
- We must continue to sing hymns that come from scripture.
We need to do more listening and less talking. If you’re like me, you need to lose the laundry list of items to ask God for, or at least lose it for a while. Instead we need to sit and wait, and hear what He will say to us. This is after repenting of our sins of course. To illustrate, let me tell you about a little book by Mary Geegh, a reformed missionary to India.
Her first year had no results. “I preached to the people; I prayed for them, but I did all the talking. Sometimes I pleaded with God a whole night for a person to change and turn from the power of Satan to the power of Christ. Nothing seemed to happen.”
Then another missionary came to town. Amazing miracles started happening just as soon as he got there. The people pointed out the difference to her and told her, “He taught us how to have the power of the Holy Spirit in our daily lives.”
She asked the other missionary, Dr. L. R. Scudder Sr., how to begin to have the power of the Holy Spirit.
“He told me: ‘The first step is to ‘wait’ … ‘be still’ … ‘listen.’ ”
She changed her methods to match his. She would sit for 15 minutes with someone who came to her with a need, waiting for the Lord to tell them something. Then amazing things started happening for her too. (from God Guides by Mary Geegh, published by PrayAmerica of Lansing, MI)
In my prayers, I have had the habit of always doing all the talking. Am I afraid to listen because I’m afraid to hear from the devil instead of the Holy Spirit? This is a false fear.
Inner healing prayer:
Most of the conference involved praying for inner healing. The basic steps are these:
- Receive forgiveness
- Forgive others
- Hand your negative emotions to Jesus on the cross.
The Lord showed me something from my childhood that needed healing, and healed it. There were healings going on all around me at the conference.
When we ignore the power of the Holy Spirit, we are poor as a result.
John 16:14 He (the Holy Spirit) will bring glory to me by taking from what is mine and making it known to you.
Psalm 46:10 Be still and know that I am God.
2 Cor. 3:16 But whenever anyone turns to the Lord, the veil is taken away.
Col. 3:16 Let the message of Christ dwell among you richly as you teach and admonish one another with all wisdom through psalms, hymns, and songs from the Spirit, singing to God with gratitude in your hearts.
On symbols: John 3:14 Just as Moses lifted up the snake in the desert, so the Son of Man must be lifted up, that everyone who believes in him may have eternal life.
On symbols: John 4:13 Jesus answered, “Everyone who drinks this water will be thirsty again, but whoever drinks the water I give him will never thirst. Indeed, the water I give him will become in him a spring of water welling up to eternal life.”