Jesus shows administrator His amazing grace
A was born into a life of luxury which was turned upside down as a result of a few tragic family events. A persevered to follow God in spite of her subsequent low esteem and bitterness towards her father. Through a time of prayer, God showed her the meaning of grace and rewarded her for persevering to follow Jesus and for forgiving her earthly father. Praise God!
What is life? We all think about this at some point in our lives.
I began deliberating this question often since the age of thirteen, dwelling on philosophy and deep thoughts, as if looking for a reason to justify myself for being here.
After much wandering around in the dark, I came to Christ in my teens. Through God’s love and power, I experienced some progressive and magnificent changes in me. But I also noticed that after the “honeymoon period,” my faith journey seemed to be an extreme rollercoaster ride.
On a good day, I would be most happy to spread love and care, delight in studying the Bible, and fully engage in prayers. On a bad day, I would rather hide in my own cave than talk to God.
It wasn’t that I stopped experiencing God’s goodness but as some life difficulties continued, my spiritual and emotional struggles became amplified. Maintaining the most routine daily activities seemed to be the biggest battle. After trying everything possible I could think of, I found myself hanging off a cliff, losing strength and reason to even hold on.
I asked God, “Why? Why all these afflictions? Why won’t You let me go?”
I became bitter. I became most weary.
One day a friend invited me to join a discipleship course. I had not told her about my state, yet she said, “There is a way out of darkness and hurts.” I knew it was God who was reaching out to me.
Through the course, I came to realise that my lifelong habit – detaching from real emotions – was greatly quenching the Holy Spirit. Rationalising made it worse, as I denied myself of all my needs and feelings.
I always turned to my own brain, rather than reach for God.
Growing up in a family with little emotional support, I felt I must handle everything alone. With this ingrained into my subconscious mind, I always “managed” all troubles and struggles by myself, no matter how detrimental things were.
My sisters and I lost our mother unexpectedly when I was very young. Yet no one ever talked to me about grief. I was left to fend for myself and so I pretended that I was okay. I did not know how to reach out for help. Many things at home changed drastically afterward, and my father became a major target of all my blame and bitterness.
I also came to realise that I had somewhat overlapped God’s image with how I saw my earthly father; detached, insensitive, unpredictable, and authoritative. Sometimes when I prayed to God, I would even say “dad” instead.
As contradicting as it may sound, I actually made my father into my idol – a god, and I gave him a lot of power over me.
Wrestling with my own pride and stubbornness, I could only cling on to one thing I was confident of God – His faithfulness. So after the course, I asked to have prayer counsellors pray with me.
Right at the beginning of the renewal prayer, my prayer counsellor was deeply moved by the Holy Spirit to wash my feet, just as my Lord did for the twelve disciples in the Last Supper, including Judas.
Through the prayer counsellor, Jesus said to me, “My child, I want you to know how much I love you. Today, I ask you to be my disciple.” My counsellor was in tears as she repeated Jesus’ words, and I could feel He was truly, deeply hurt to see me dwelling in pain. “My child, no matter how dirty you think you are, I can wash you clean.”
My tears welled up, and flowed and flowed. I could only utter meekly in reply, “Yes, my Lord.”
Deep down, I had rejected God for a long time. I rejected His will for me to be happy because I had been in deep self-rejection, remorse, and low self-esteem for longer than I had realised. To cover up, I used pride.
Even as a Christian, I relied on my own strength, unknowingly doing things for my own justification. I only wanted to use God for my own plans. But still, our Lord Jesus – the highest King – chose to kneel down in front of me, wash my feet, and cover me with His forbearing love because He knew everything that was in my heart.
We spent much of the time repenting and cutting off the occult rooted in my life and my family’s lineage.
I subconsciously “married” myself to Hades in childhood from reading fantasy stories; I pledged my lifespan to idols in exchange for things I wanted; and I consulted mediums to bring blessings to me and curses to others.
All my life, I struggled with an inevitable attraction to darkness and death. As I was completing the renewal prayer form, I was shocked to find similar footprints of death in my ancestors, and the Holy Spirit showed me these were not mere coincidences. The witchcraft I practiced myself also gave Satan more footholds in me.
As we prayed to break off the grip of the occult and death in the name of Jesus, my whole body warmed up more and more.
My body felt like it was resurrecting back to life. In fact, my cheeks and lips got so rosy that my prayer counsellors were amazed!
I knew way before the prayer session that I must forgive my dad. I was aware that I wilfully held him responsible for my family’s suffering, albeit knowing he was helpless and emotionally crippled. In my heart, I believed, “He owes it all to us!” So I imagined it would be dramatic and excruciating when it came to forgiving him.
The Holy Spirit first made me aware that I allowed myself to become bitter against my dad as an “entitled revenge” on behalf of my mom.
When I continued to accuse my dad, God simply said to me, “I forgave you for repeatedly taking your own life”. Suddenly, I was out of words. I had attempted suicide four times. The last time, I was miraculously saved with no side effects. I knew it was God’s grace that kept me alive. Now, I placed myself on a higher, more righteous ground than my dad, when I really was not.
At that one moment – after decades of harboured hate and judgement – I was able to willingly forgive my dad and repent of my sins with much ease.
We also spent time dealing with my heart, which had been caged up by a mixture of past wounds and inner vows. After clearing many of the obstacles between God and me, I was asked to enter His throne room.
Immediately, I saw a pair of heavy doors and I could only knock. (I did not communicate about the doors I saw to the prayer counsellors.) Then I saw a peaceful garden with a clear brook running. But I could not see God. After a while, I felt Him walking up from behind me. I was overwhelmed and trembling, but He led me to sleep peacefully on the grass, telling me I no longer have to do everything on my own and that I can just “stay here and rest.”
At this point, I didn’t dare look at God face to face.
I had bought into Satan’s lies and saw myself as a murderer of Jesus. I also saw myself as being too lowly, filthy, and undeserving of God.
The Holy Spirit then prompted the prayer counsellors to lead me to forgive myself. I was asked to turn from focusing on the cross with Jesus still being there. Instead, I felt Jesus take me to the empty grave, happily telling me, “Hey, I don’t feel the pain anymore!”
I was also reminded to turn away from condemning myself. As promised at the beginning of the prayer, there’s nothing too filthy in me that God cannot clean!
The heavy doors before God’s throne room symbolised my fear, block-out, and sense of unworthiness.
As I prayed to forgive myself, foregoing my own judgement against myself, I saw Jesus breaking the doors with me, tearing them like thin pieces of paper. Finally, I was able to see God. I ran to my Father, and He joyously received me with His arms wide open. He led me to breathe in deeply, like breathing in life.
When I was asked how God sees me, I saw myself clothed in an oversized, thick and lush red robe. I even doubted when I saw myself wearing a crown and when the word “royalty” came to me. God said He is proud of me and He created a noble nature in me.
James 1:12 ESV Blessed is the man who remains steadfast under trial, for when he has stood the test he will receive the crown of life, which God has promised to those who love him.
These words are too precious and I had to confirm them with my prayer counsellors. Through them, God told me I can hold my head high, and He sees me a really, really good daughter. He knows all of my most difficult struggles and honours all my efforts to go to Him.
I saw myself shrinking back into a little child.
Before the prayer session, I had read the parable of the prodigal son several times but was unable to personally relate to it. I always felt like God’s servant, unworthy to be anything more. I judged the prodigal son for all his misdeeds whilst reading the verses. I also did not believe God will treat me the same way as in the parable.
But that day, God showed me that I am the prodigal daughter, where God my Father, the highest Almighty, dashes out to welcome me, calls for a feast, putting on the best robe on me when I felt myself too low to even become a servant.
Being new to this life from Jesus, I am still a little clueless about navigating my life.
I am still practicing many things, just like any new-born. But I am more open to receiving good things from God as He lavishes them on me. My heart is much softened and restored, and it’s reassuring that I no longer need to rely on my own strength.
I can enter into God’s presence, not because of what I did, but because what Jesus did. I have entered fully into God’s rest.
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