Jesus shows architect His sweet fragrance of life
T experienced an unexplainable fear after two friends committed suicide. He sought help and was led to do a renewal prayer that led him to identify his suppressed negative emotions. To comfort T, Jesus manifested His presence through a sweet fragrance in the prayer room. Praise God!
A good friend of mine committed suicide last year.
He was not the first friend who killed himself. Another friend from a different circle of friends also had depression and committed suicide a few months ago. These two deaths affected me a lot.
After I went to the most recent funeral, I did not feel right. I felt such a strong fear inside me that I do not know how to describe it. It was so serious that I could not sleep. I had to switch on all the lights at home in order to sleep a bit at night. I realised this was abnormal and spiritual, so I asked a prayer counselor from church for help.
We prayed to cut off all soul ties with the territorial spirits of the funeral homes, the monks or religious masters of ceremony and the people around me who submitted to spirits of death and suicide. I also repented for taking part in funeral rituals that God would consider idolatrous.
After I brought all my grief, anger, confusion over my friend’s suicide to God, I felt peace deep inside my heart. All those fears were gone.
“The Lord bless you and keep you; the Lord make his face shine on you and be gracious to you; the Lord turn his face toward you and give you peace.” Numbers 6:24-16
I had heard about people experiencing spiritual things before, but this was the first time for me. At this point, I decided to do a renewal prayer to remove any other ungodly spiritual elements in my life.
I grew up in a non-Christian family in Hong Kong, and did not have many Christians around me. After I believed in Jesus Christ in my late twenties, it was a blessing that I was connected to different groups of Christians who loved me and supported me in growing in my faith.
One of my major struggles has been my relationship with my parents.
I do not have much connection or deep communication with them in general. When I was small, both of my parents worked on shift and we did not spend much time together. Even though my love language is ‘quality time’, I tried to tell myself that I felt okay that my parents spent so much time at work away from my brother and me. Overall speaking, they worked for the benefit of the family. We needed the money.
In Hong Kong, a typical family value is money. Money does not really bother me personally as long as it is sufficient. I am always content with what I have. But as I grew up, I started to get upset every time my parents picked money over other things. This has grown worse in recent years as Hong Kong has become less and less affordable.
Year after year, I have suppressed my feelings of disappointment and abandonment over my family’s focus on money..
A few years ago, I was extremely disappointed with my parents. My grandmother, who took care of us when my brother and I were young, sold her apartment in Hong Kong and moved to live with my uncle in Taiwan a few short weeks, over a dispute with my parents over money. She split the money from the apartment sale and gave it to my mum and my uncle. To me, money was the cause of all this. I was very angry but I kept my thoughts and feelings to myself.
All these toxic emotions eventually became a barrier to my relationship with God and with my parents as well.
I believed that God planned everything for us but it required a huge effort and faith in order to listen to His will and follow His way instead. I could not really feel the presence of the Holy Spirit. I felt that God, the Father, was unpredictable.
As a result, I often felt anxious, lonely and worried. Those emotions came more frequently when I was not happy and alone at home. I would wonder where I went wrong and would ‘replay’ the things that happened to me. The more I thought of them, the more I went into a downward spiral that made me feel even worse. I did not have much joy. I also had recurring bad dreams related to past failures in school.
Eventually, I learned to disassociate myself from painful situations and just tried to sleep or do something else to take my mind off the stress.
I thought that these were good mechanisms for self-protection, although I could not tell how I developed them.
During renewal prayer, I realised all these things were related back to my childhood. One of my most painful memories was of me playing alone in the living room at home when I was about five years old. I tried to feel okay about it. But inside, I felt bitter and lonely. That was the first time I revisited that scenario. My prayer counselors asked me to describe all those negative feelings and it took great effort for me to confess my bitterness.
Then I asked God if He was there. Indeed, at that instant, God showed me that He was present in the room watching and waiting for me to run over to give me a big hug. That day, I submitted my disappointments to God.
During the break of the prayer session, I smelled a sweet fragrance like strawberries in the room all of a sudden.
At first, I suspected it was from a pack of candies, but after I opened it, the candies inside smelled very different. I asked my prayer counselors what is that smell? They explained 2 Corinthians 2:14-15, that it is the smell of the Holy Spirit, He is present with us all the time. As followers of Christ, we are supposed to carry the fragrance of the Holy Spirit.
It was a joyful experience to know of His unconditional love even before I came to Christ.
“But thanks be to God, who always leads us as captives in Christ’s triumphal procession and uses us to spread the aroma of the knowledge of him everywhere. For we are to God the pleasing aroma of Christ among those who are being saved and those who are perishing.” 2 Corinthians 2:14-15
Today, I no longer have bad dreams. There isn’t a big improvement for my relationship with parents yet, but sometimes I would try to understand their feelings, even though I may not agree with their actions and decisions. I also pray for them, hoping they will be able to see the bigger picture and get to know God one day. Although I still struggle with my family relations, as well as concerns about my future, I know I can go to God because He is always with me.
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