The Whole Inheritance

Greetings from Rome!

I am here at Transform 2013, an outreach program of OM.  At the airport while waiting for the bus to the conference, I stopped at a coffee shop for an after-lunch espresso, as is my habit.  Next to me at the coffee bar was a friendly woman.  She smiled and spoke to me in English.  It turned out that she was also headed to Transform.  We hit it off in an instant friendship.  But Monica and I had no idea at the time just how compatible we were.

Transform in Rome is to prepare missionaries for short-term missions in the countries around the Mediterranean.  “Where are you going after the conference?” Monica asked me.  This would become one of the 2 most common questions to strike up conversation at the conference.  The other being, “Where did you come from?”  I told her that I’m from Texas, living in Milan, Italy, and going to Malta after the conference.  Her smile widened and she said, “Me too!”  Both our jaws dropped open.  Right on cue, the bus arrived and took us to the conference.  Monica and I rode together, each glad to have found a traveling companion.

When I arrived in Rome, I was already going on 2 nights in a row of only 4 hours sleep.  Monday night (or technically, Tuesday morning) I awoke at 2AM with a migraine attack beginning.  The enemy frequently tries to prevent me from going or from being effective on missions trips by attacking me with migraines.  But the Lord said to get on my feet and fight.  So I stood there in the dark room, rebuking the enemy silently so as not to awake my 3 roommates.  The migraine immediately went away and I was able to get back to sleep, but had a 3rd night of only about 4 hours sleep.  Something would have to break.  The next night (yesterday morning) I woke up again at 2 and simply couldn’t get back to sleep.  It wasn’t that my mind was busy, I just laid there feeling my breath going in and out, and not sleeping.  About 11 that morning, I was considering going to the room to see if I could sleep through lunch.

But my morning prayer partner suggested that I pray with someone who knows about generational curses.  She suggested this because I had opened up and told her about my concerns for my son, who had written on Facebook that he hadn’t been happy in a year, and had asked the question, “Why should I go on living?”  I noted that it was about a year ago that his grandfather (my former father-in-law) had committed suicide.  The person she led me to was Monica.

I told Monica about my son and father-in-law, and also that 4 months later, I also lost a close family friend to suicide.  She said that there is a spirit of suicide and a spirit of death that are generational spirits.  That means that they tend to cling to a person’s family, encouraging death among family members.  I had already broken other such curses off my family, but not specifically suicide or death.  I told her that in the last year that I lived with my husband, I suffered thoughts of suicide all day long, day-in and day-out.  And that finally, when I left him, I was literally running for my life—not because of physical danger from him, but because of the danger that I might, in a moment of weakness, act upon those thoughts because of how intolerable life had become for me.  One day I did come close, but instead called 911 and was referred to the County Mental Health Clinic, where I was given a prescription for an anti-depressant.

Monica took me to her room, laid hands on me and prayed for me, breaking the spirit of suicide and death.  She prayed for the healing of my memories and other things that I don’t remember.  What I do remember is that her hands smelled very nice and felt soothing on my skin.  When I commented on the fragrance of her hands she showed me a little vial of Frankincense.  It has a lovely smell!  It’s really very soothing.

After Monica’s prayer, I felt my energy return.  I did take a nap, but not until after lunch, and only for about 45 minutes.  Last night I slept very well, getting about 8 hours—6 in a row!—thank You, Lord!

Today almost everyone has gone into the city of Rome on outreach, taking many paperback Gospels of John in Italian, 3000 dvd’s of the Jesus film to give away, and thousands of tracts to hand out.  I decided to stay behind, knowing that without a nap, I could never last a whole day into the evening, walking around Rome.  On Fridays I pray for Italy from 3-4 in the afternoon.  So I went to the prayer room, with their big floor map of the Mediterranean countries.  I knelt down on Italy and prayed and wept over it.  Then I stretched out over Italy, my heart right over Tuscany.  For a long time I had no words to pray, just mute longing for the salvation of the people of Italy, and my heart beating over Tuscany.

Then I lifted up my head and saw the words printed on the corner of the map: “Ask Me, and I will make the nations your inheritance, the ends of the earth your possession,” (Psalm 2:8).  It was 3 years ago, just before I went to Transform 2010, that I received a prophecy, saying (in part): “You will not just receive the blessing, but the whole inheritance.”  So I stood to my feet and began to ask for the nations as my inheritance, and to claim the whole inheritance.  As brokenhearted as I had earlier felt for Italy, I began to feel confident that God will indeed bless and save the people of Italy—no matter what their background.

Then I remembered a prophecy I received a few days ago, but read this morning: “When your faith is in what you want Me to do for you instead just wanting Me, it is misplaced,” (emphasis mine).  Yes, my faith is in God Almighty, and He alone is the hope for Italy.  God, who helped me yesterday when I was in trouble, can help Italy, too!  God is good!

Where is Your Focus?

Day Seventeen

I am often surprised at how easily I am distracted.  Cleaning house can take several hours as I fly off on this tangent or that, cleaning details or organizing stuff, and in the end, I have to just rush through the job.

It’s the same with running errands, I see the card store and remember that I need something there, then I go into the supermarket because I need to pick up milk, and before I know it, I’ve gone a long way out of my way and still haven’t gotten the essentials done.

At one time I had 7 volunteer jobs.  I think it was a way to distract myself from the pain of an abusive marriage.

During the summer of my divorce, I began sitting at the front of the church.  I desperately needed to hear from God, and there is almost nothing to distract me.  I still like to sit at the front.

After the divorce, I was so mentally distracted that I could only manage to pray by writing my prayers in a journal.

Sometimes I think of the devil as a sleight of hand magician: distracting us with one hand while the other seeks to pick our pockets.

Today I feel like the Lord is telling me that I’ve got to focus on the important Kingdom work that He’s given me to do.  Don’t just do something: stop and pray!

I Missed the Train, But Made it to the Divine Appointment

I have learned that when I pray to make it to a train, plane, or bus on time, but miss it anyway, it is because God has some higher reason.  And yesterday was no exception.  When my train arrived from Pescara, I had to go back to my apartment to pick up copies of my new book, “Laughing in My Dreams,” to take to friends who pray for me in Biella.  I give my books to people on my prayer team because it is their prayers that help me along in my ministry travels.

Of course, I did my best to make it to the train.  I had calculated that although the time would be tight, I should be able to make it.  However, I got to the train station just as the train was departing.  I said, “Thank You, Lord, for whatever reason I missed the train.  Your plans are always better than mine.”

There was another train an hour later.  Since I had waited at the train station for an hour, I was one of the first ones on the train.  All the seats filled up very quickly, and I wondered if one the people near me might be a divine appointment, but two of the people talked the whole time about people they know, and the young man who took the fourth seat immediately opened his computer and started working.  It was the same on the connecting train.  Pastor Fabio was going to pick me up at the station on the original train, but he had a Bible study to lead.  Instead, he sent Gabriel to pick me up at the train station.

I didn’t know Gabriel or Mary very well, just brief encounters over lunch months ago.  Gabriel started telling me about their ministry.  They are starting a shelter/soup kitchen for the street people of Biella.  Immediately I understood that this was my divine appointment for the day: Gabriel was feeling the weight of his ministry, but was discouraged because things didn’t seem to be moving along like he had hoped.  I felt the Holy Spirit rising up in me to encourage him that this is important work.  Honestly, I don’t remember exactly what I said.  That’s the way it usually is when the Holy Spirit speaks through me.  The words don’t go through my human brain, so as I speak, I’m hearing the words for the first time, and often I don’t remember afterwards what it was that I said.

And that’s the way it was yesterday.  I missed the train, but made it to my divine appointment right on time.  Every day is a new adventure if you don’t let the little things like a missed train get you down.

P.S.  After posting this last night, look what was in my inbox this morning: http://www.guideposts.org/faith/bible-resources/turn-disappointment-to-god-appointment?utm_source=Bible-Alive&utm_medium=email&utm_campaign=2013-2-11_nl_turn-disappointment-to-god-appointment.  God is good!