Tuesday, March 16, 2010

It is so good to hear that people have been healed

This will be a little of a composite article although I will try not to have too many things in it. Overall, it would be an article about my little “ministry” and a little of my sensing or wondering.

Every few months I will reflect on what has been happening in my little “ministry”. By the little ministry, for the benefit of readers who are new to this site, I mean the tiny bit or two that I believe the Lord is using me in, or even would like to believe the Lord is using me in. Principally, there is a bit which I am a little more certain that the Lord is using me in a tiny way; and that is in the broad area of healing. Of course, for many who had embraced the baptism of the Holy Spirit, and the power thereof, such things that I do, may not, in their eyes, amount to a ministry at all, especially when what I do, I do not do it in a full-time manner. But I want to call it a ministry, if not for any other reasons, it is better for me to view the things I do, as important to the Lord because the sinful nature in me, naturally will not want me to do the things that I do. It is tiny, yet I must see it as capable of being made wider, deeper, and greater; not that I can but the Lord is able, and He can enlarge if He so desires. Is there any other bit? I like to dream with the Lord, and based on what I see as having happened or is happening to me, I like to picture myself as a “healer” with a slightly unique slant, a singing healer. We all have many dreams. How about a dream with the Lord? I find that dreaming with the Lord is one thing, not difficult at all, but to make an effort for that dream, is altogether a different thing, not a easy thing, because the sinful nature in us doesn’t like that. The tug of war of us trying to live according to the Spirit, and not, to the sinful nature is really tough, as like the Apostle Paul said it, in his epistles. But that is the reality of this life; there is no escaping it, we have to face it, and learn to win in that tug of war of choices of life, bearing in mind that Scriptures said that the Lord’s grace is sufficient for us, and that the Lord is faithful. I am still learning, and one recent thing that I am trying to internalize completely is that faith attracts grace.

What is faith? What is a faith entity or a unit of faith?
Because of my last statement above, I will explain a little of the understanding I learned. I will just be brief without quoting Bible references; perhaps when I feel I should write a separate article, I will go at length at this. Faith is not just a belief. Belief is only half the story, so to speak. The other half is action consistent with that belief. A unit of faith is belief coupled with an action consistent with that belief. If you just believe, that is not a complete faith unit or entity. Of course, action, by itself, is not faith at all. When a pre-believer believes that Jesus died for him but does not confess that fact with his mouth, that belief is just a belief, not a faith. It is only when that belief is followed by an action, like the confession with one’s mouth (or even putting up of hands), is the belief, a complete unit of faith, that can be counted as righteousness by God. Closely related is therefore, a definition of righteousness, but we will not go there, today. Some faith units are small, some are bigger, units can be joined together to form bigger units, bigger faith.

Therefore, in connection with the little ministry that I am referring to with regard to myself, i.e. in healing, if I believe but I do not pray for the sick person, I cannot claim the promise of God. I cannot say I have exercised faith, give me my grace. I have to believe (a belief) and pray (go into action consistent with that belief), and expect the grace of God to be poured out for healing. Of course, grace of God, by its very nature, depends on God, because when it is grace, anything asked for is unmerited. But I believe faith in God attracts God’s grace. When there is no unit of faith in God, there is no attraction of God’s grace. I am not saying that God cannot grant grace when no one put up any faith. Sugar attracts ants, but it does mean that ants cannot come by when there is no sugar. If we want to see God heals through you, move into action, do not just believe and do nothing.

Is expectation important?
I said we have to believe and pray, and EXPECT the grace of God to be poured out. Expectation in prayers for the sick tells of two things: One, strength of your belief. You do not expect because you do not believe or believed enough to expect. Two, your compassion for others; you do not expect because your heart did not go out for the sick person. Our God is a God of compassion, and when we move with his compassion, we are moving according to his heart-beat, and if it is His heart-beat, He is likely to move. So expectation is very important. If you pray without expectation, ask yourself, what is your motive? Again, do not get me wrong; I am not saying that healing cannot come without your expectation. Nothing can stop God from wanting to do something, except Himself. But if you want to see more healing, pray with expectation. But take note also that we cannot dictate how God should minister. We only expect God to act, how He acts is up to Him.

With these in mind, I will now share my joy of knowing that some people got healed when I prayed for them.

The last time I shared a testimony was in Jan 2010 – “Intercede for others, and you’ll be blessed too”. So, after 2 months or so, some 2 weeks ago, I wondered if God would do more in and through me. I long for God to break new ground, and I share my senior pastor’s desire of wanting to see more healings, and more significant healings, for his case, in the church, for myself, in the church, or elsewhere, wherever I minister. All of us, of course, know that healing is God’s work not ours, but remember what I just said about expectation.

At church
Some 2 weeks ago, in the church’s Sunday 8.30 am service, I again released words of knowledge and prayed for people in ministry time after praise and worship. I was encouraged that consecutively, one after another, 2 people got slain. The moment I finished giving my words of knowledge, a woman appeared in front of me. She was slain but there was not a catcher behind her; I was holding her hands, just like I normally would do when praying for people, at least at the beginning, before I usually would then lay my right hand on people’s forehead. When she felt like she was about to fall backwards, she grabbed my hands tightly, and in an effort to break her fall I also tried to hold onto her hands. This lady had rings on both her hands, the kind that hold diamonds, and those rings really gave me a nasty pain in my fingers (If any, from the church leadership is reading this, I got feedback, afterwards, from the woman and the husband, that they feared not having catchers around; maybe the church should regularly encourage members of congregation to step forward to be catchers).

Next was a man who 18 years ago, was miraculously healed by God of some weird muscle inflammation from certain death. This man is known to many in church. He walked up to me at the middle of the sanctuary front. Because the slain woman was still on the floor, there was no space to pray for this man, in case he also fell. I walked him to the extreme left side of the sanctuary and prayed for him there. Despite having walked some 30 feet to the left side of the sanctuary, when I prayed for him, I soon realized that he too was going to fall. I tried to break his fall, and he was slain to the floor. This gentleman had problem with his hip, and he told me that he had to be very careful when he put on his trousers because every time if the angle was not just right, he would experience extreme sharp pain on his hip. Afterwards, outside the church I passed by this brother, and he said he had experienced a tremendous release, which I took it to mean he had experienced the healing touch of the Lord.

TV program!
The above type of visible experiences excites me, and each time I would look forward to more. During the week, as I was watching a TV drama serial, 2 characters in the program talked about their experiencing a freshness going to work, just like the first days they started work. This set me meditating on the zeal that we must have concerning our work for the Lord – the first love. It got me thinking how much attention I gave to my “little ministry” when it first begun some 2 years ago. I began to remind myself how absorbed I was in the earlier days, although it is not to say I no longer did the things I used to do. The zeal and eager expectation sometimes eluded me. I reminded myself that many people, when they have not experienced God’s use of them in the supernatural, they long eagerly for such an occasion, but when they have tasted how it is like, they, soon, do not want to put themselves through “all the troubles” to be used by the Lord. I always keep in mind what a veteran itinerant preacher said about being used by God in the supernatural. These are his wise words: Anyone can be used by the Lord, but to be used consistently by the Lord one needs to get right with God, and stay right with God, even to grow. It is not difficult to understand, supernatural works are not works of men, and therefore clearly God is involved, consistent use of a person may imply a stamp of approval which God does not anyhow put on a person. God does look after His Name. So, you see, there are the “all the troubles” which, often times, people are not prepared to face.

FGBMF meetings
When I learnt from the Friday of 5th March 2010, that Michelle Hamilton (an Australian) would be sharing her testimony at the Jurong East FGBMFI(S) chapter (or now we called it gate) on the following Friday (12th March) , I was thinking to myself that I might want to be absent from the meeting. The reason was simple she had already shared the testimony in my church before, and I did not feel I want to hear her testimony again or would benefit from it. Do not get me wrong, Michelle Hamilton had a fantastic swept out to sea experience that completely changed her life. The experience happened some 20 years ago in Philippines, and today she was still sharing that testimony because it was that life-changing. Some of you, the FGBMFI(S) people know that I am part of the core Committee of the Jurong East Gate. I was supposed to provide the presence and support to the meetings, role of which I duly embraced for more than 1 year now (I am now on the 2nd term). I do not do very much at these meetings, although I have believed that my presences often helped. Still at this occasion, I just felt firstly I did not think that I would benefit from the coming to the meeting where Michelle Hamilton would be sharing, secondly, I was not really contributing much to make a difference; at least, that was what I thought sometimes. I had not been able to move much in the words of knowledge for healing in these lunch meetings as they are short, had its own liturgy, often attended by the same few persons. Often times, there was no room to pray for people, either no time left or I had better defer it to the invited speaker.

But because of the double slain in church, and the subsequent meditation of the first love, as a result of a prompting by the Spirit from the TV drama serial, I finally gave in to attend the Friday (12th March) FGBMFI(S) Jurong East Gate meeting where Michelle Hamilton was scheduled to give her testimony. I reminded myself that I was to serve, to give, and not to receive. On my way there to the lunch meeting, while driving, I told the Lord (I often did that) that alright I was to serve and to give, and asked the Lord to make my time at the meeting to count.

By the way, I just checked my blog entry on “A special Resurrection Sunday indeed (2009)”, and if my memory did not fail me, from my re-reading of that article, Michelle Hamilton spoke on that particular Sunday in my church (now confirmed from church online sermons site). I heard that testimony of hers 3 times that weekend, no wonder I did not feel like wanting to listen to it again. But this recollection, brought on a powerful connection that made me even more certain that I should pen this article down. When I re-read the 2009 article, I realized that what I did in that 10.30 am service in my church in April 2009 was exactly the same things I did on the Friday, 12th March 2010, both occasions of which Michelle Hamilton spoke.

At last Friday’s meeting, just like when I was in the April 2009 church service meeting, while I was seated, I received multiple sensations on my body, which by now I have learnt from “constant use”, to know these sensations were “words” of knowledge for healing. Those of you who were present at the meeting can compare what I said at the end of the meeting with the only recording that I had of my words of knowledge experiences in my church on this blog site, found at the end of the 2009 article. I gave out the words of knowledge in like manner. I am amazed at this similarity of the 2 occasions, many things were so similar, the words of knowledge were given at the end of meeting (in my church setting, that was uncommon, if you read, words were given outside the normal time slot), followed by many people responding to the words, I prayed for many people in this small meeting (maybe 8-10, and there was a proxy case even!), and I can recall that even when I was praying for people in this meeting, several persons were also being prayed for by Michelle Hamilton, like in 2009.

Back in the 2009 Resurrection Sunday session, I prayed like I was a great servant of God. For this FGBMFI(S) Friday session, although, I did not see anyone slain (in the 2009 session, also, no one was slain despite many were being prayed for), I remember I prayed with faith, just believing. For one of the women I prayed for in this FGBMFI session, I sensed heat on my hands when I prayed. I prayed with faith and expectation in that Friday afternoon.

All with early days’ vigor and zeal
So any healing took place from this Friday afternoon session, you are eager to know? After the meeting I realized it had been an extraordinary session, especially when it was such a small meeting of some 20+ people. While talking to the Lord before the weekend church services (both Saturday and Sunday services), I brought the occasion before the Lord, noted it was somewhat exceptional, but no people got slain. I entered the weekend church services with expectation. For those church services, I released words of knowledge, prayed for people, with great faith. I had hoped to see some tangible signs of God performing miracles in the church sessions. I was hoping I could at least see someone slain but I did not. Nevertheless, I was satisfied at the end of that weekend that I did my best for all the sessions, from Friday through to Sunday; I had gone into service for the Lord with the early days’ vigor and zeal.

Hello, so was there healing for the Friday FGBMF(S) lunch meeting at Jurong East Gate? I know some have feedback that my articles are too long-winded but please understand that these articles also served as a form of journaling for me of my journey with the Lord, and so I penned down things that I want to capture for my own record as well. The answer is affirmative. The news of the healing came on the Monday following, 15th March 2010, in the FGBMF(S) AGM. Before I go into the news, for the purposes of my own journaling, and also to encourage the brothers and sisters of FGBMF(S), please bear with me for a little recording of what I felt at the AGM.

For the benefit of those not knowing what FGBMFI(S) stands for, it is referring to the Full Gospel Businessmen Fellowship International, Singapore. I want to say that I could sense the Holy Spirit’s presence at that evening’s AGM. I usually sense the presence of the Holy Spirit physically. Not wanting to lengthen this article, I would only say that in this current season of my life I could sense the presence of the Holy Spirit by sensations in my ears, and on my forehead. The sensation was very strong when the central leadership was praying on the stage in the banquet hall. Also, when the people were asked to pray in the spirit (in tongues), I realized that when I did that, I prayed with a new tongue. Now, I have the gift of tongue for more than 20 years. I know I do pray in multiple tongues, and I am sensitive to the Lord’s doing of new things, like the giving of a new tongue (language) to me, in addition to those I already have. So, what I am saying is that I believed the Holy Spirit had given me a new tongue that evening. Because of the strong presence of the Holy Spirit, to which I usually would ask the Lord what he would want me to do; I prayed for the wife of the member who sat next to me. The member and the wife are new Christians, a year old. Both are old, over 70 years old. The lady was wheel-chair bound as a result of multiple strokes in the past, the last one happened some 8 years ago. May the Lord continue to grant her the peace and joy of the Spirit all the days of her life, just like I prayed for her that evening. Of course, I prayed for the Lord’s strengthening for her physical body to keep up with the long life the Lord has been granting to her.

At last, the 2 healing news from the Friday Jurong East Gate session. At that meeting, the words released included a condition of problem in the mouth, bad tooth, gums, or the jaw; pain in the knees; back pain; and breast disorder. The first thing that an Indian brother who had attended the Jurong East Gate session said to me, at the AGM dinner, was that he was healed. When I confirmed the details with him, he was indeed being healed of the first condition. This brother was having very bad glum and ulcers problem for over a week. He said it was so bad that he could hardly eat. I remember after that afternoon meeting, at the eating place (we always have lunch after each Gate session), this same brother thanked me for praying for him. This brother shared with me, on this Monday AGM evening that, that afternoon, after the prayer, his condition had already shown sign of improvement. He said by Sunday/Monday, he was healed. Many of us have experienced such nasty mouth ulcers or sores. Especially for those of us who are older, such ailments can really take a long, long time to go away if we leave it to our natural body immune system to heal the ailments. I thank God for He cared.

The next was a lady at the same table I sat. The Jurong East Gate members were spread over 3 tables in the AGM “banquet” meeting. She is the wife of another member of the gate. Both of them attended the gate meetings regularly. The husband goes out on mission trips from time to time, and the wife was relating to me on the Friday that I prayed for her, that each time the husband was to go out for mission trip, something would happen to her, she would get sick, pain in the eyes, mishap happened, etc. This time the husband is scheduled to leave for mission trip at the end of the month. She had a fall and injured her knee. Again, this couple is old; and old people when we fall, and injure ourselves, it can take quite long for physical injury to muscles, tendons and bones to heal; even bruises and blue-black marks take a long time to heal or go away. This sister said that by Sunday she was better already, and she had wanted to tell me and thank me on Sunday when she was at church (this couple attends the same church I attend), but somehow did not have the chance. To confirm her healing, she decided to wear high heels to the AGM. She even showed her shoes. Hallelujah.

Anthony Chia – Thank you Lord for the encouragement, and I must learn not to want to see people slain as a sign that you are working. But Lord, like my senior pastor, I want to see more significant healings, not that what you have done for the people were not important, you know that I know that, but more, Lord, more.

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