Jesus reveals entrepreneur’s inner vows
C felt sluggish and struggled to feel true joy. She had unknowingly been living by her own laws and inner vows, and ended up accusing God for not meeting her expectations. Her disappointments blinded her to the good works that God had prepared for her, until the Holy Spirit lovingly revealed the truth to her. Praise God!
I’ve been a Christian since my youth and had been determined to work hard to successfully climb the corporate ladder.
In my first renewal prayer about a year ago, I uncovered and dealt with a lot of occult that my family had dabbled in, especially since my dad followed the practices of different sorcerers and masters. After that time of prayer ministry, I felt true peace and a deeper understanding of the impact of how the occult practices from my family had a stronghold on my life and blocked me from deepening my relationship with God.
But for the last few months, I had been feeling oddly unmotivated, heavy, and sluggish.
This was very odd for me to be experiencing. I felt like there was something holding me back, and I couldn’t figure out what was having a stronghold on me. Therefore, I again sought the Holy Spirit’s revelation again through renewal prayer.
We began by cutting spiritual ties and breaking off from even more family occult practices I had discovered since my first renewal prayer. At this point, one of the counsellors heard the sound of some chanting, as revealed by the Holy Spirit.
God immediately revealed a memory to me.
It was of an altar in my grandparents’ home. It had a crystal lotus and there was a small radio that played chanting 24/7. I didn’t understand the chanting, but I still have the memory of the tune.
After looking it up, we found that the chanting was a Buddhist chant, Namo Amitābha (南無 阿彌陀佛), about an infinite light, life, wisdom, and a call to take refuge in this idol. The chanting had welcomed unclean spirits into my grandparents’ home, and it affected me as I was physically in the presence of these unclean spirits. This was before I became a follower of Jesus Christ and knew how to pray and cut spiritual ties with the occult.
After breaking off from the occult and confessing on behalf of my family, my sense of heaviness went away.
Next, the Holy Spirit revealed that I had made some inner vows to “be happy” and to “be good at everything I do”. These inner vows developed over time to mask the unhappiness, failures and disappointments I felt.
I was unaware that I held many other inner vows that were so deeply hidden. These inner vows drove my life. I often set very high standards for myself in my personal life and at work. As a result, I also set very high standards for people around me. Being disappointed with myself and others became a pattern in my life.
This unknowingly trickled into my spiritual life and affected my closeness with God.
I yearned for Him and did all the “right’ Christian things – praying daily, worshiping, reading the Bible regularly, going to church, serving in ministry and actively looking for opportunities to share the gospel in professional settings. I did all these in hopes of being in deeper relationship with God.
These were some of the high standards I held for myself to be a “good” Christian.
But there were times I still found myself being disappointed with God. There were thoughts that seeped into my mind questioning, “If God is really that powerful, how could He let people ‘ruin’ my life?” when things didn’t go as I had planned. I realised I had been judging God based on my own set of laws and standards written on my heart. My own laws had been blocking me from hearing from God.
When God spoke to me through a prayer counsellor and brought me to this realisation, I went on my knees and repented. I repented of controlling my own life, writing my own laws, holding judgements on my own life, believing that I won’t be successful in the things I do, imposing my own standards on my family and those around me etc. Ultimately, I repented for placing myself above Jesus, and for hurting everyone who was wounded by me without my realisation.
I was blinded by my own written laws. I had accused God of being distant, cold, and never satisfying my desires. I painted God with my own emotions.
The truth is, God is a patient, gentle, forgiving God; He loves and accepts me exactly as I am. He does not need me to strive to work for Him. I thanked God for the highs and lows in my life, everything He’s given and taken away from me, and the journey He plans for my family and me.
The Holy Spirit spoke to me.
I had a vision of Him holding my head in His chest, saying “Come as you are, no more pulling on yourself, your heavenly name is Esther, today I give it to you. You are beautiful.”
The Holy Spirit told me to look at the crown with the big jewels that God had given me through a vision during my last renewal prayer and reminded me to wear it proudly. Every affirmation I longed for in my heart, He is willing to give me. He doesn’t need me to do things. I don’t need to work or perform. God just desired to be with me.
That night, I had a vivid dream of God speaking to me, pointing me to Scripture.
He pointed me to Hebrews 12. I woke up and quickly looked them up. This was the first time I had ever experienced such direct communication from God. Praise God for His victory, and the Holy Spirit for leading me patiently and gently!
I was entangled by these hidden sins of writing my own laws and living my life that way, it blocked me from getting closer to God.
The race that God had marked out to me is not one that this world has marked.
“Therefore, since we are surrounded by such a great cloud of witnesses, let us throw off everything that hinders and the sin that so easily entangles. And let us run with perseverance the race marked out for us,” Hebrews 12:1 NIV
God had put me in training to produce a harvest of righteousness and peace through the trials I had faced. Those are the ups and downs in life. It was not something I should be upset with God about, but celebrate that He has the victory!
“No discipline seems pleasant at the time, but painful. Later on, however, it produces a harvest of righteousness and peace for those who have been trained by it.” Hebrews 12:11 NIV
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