“I think that it is rather interesting that you think I am here to clean your house.” Augusta went on to explain to my wife that in her church in Brazil before she accepted the job to work with us…it was prophesied in that church, that she had to go take that job because the people she would go to work for would eventually come to know the LORD and then go on to have their own ministry.” – Actor Stephen Baldwin Testimony
My friends, how many of us identify ourselves by our occupation? Augusta was not a housekeeper, she was an Ambassador and Intercessor for Christ and His kingdom. The Baldwin’s encounter with Jesus started because a Housekeeper said yes to intercession and a humble occupation was the strategy the LORD used to place this woman (a Spiritual Giant in God’s eyes). This woman forever changed a family’s entire trajectory in life. They know Jesus because she prayed and worshiped. Who would be changed in your work if you believed God had you there on a strategic assignment? How would your heart and attitude change if you knew this was more than a paycheck and provision.
The Morravians: two young men from Herrnhut, Germany were called in 1732 to minister to the African slaves on the Caribbean islands of St. Thomas and St. Croix. They were told that they would not be allowed to do such a thing, Dober and Nitschmann sold themselves to a slave owner and boarded a ship bound for the West Indies. As the ship pulled away from the docks, they called out to their loved ones on shore, “May the Lamb that was slain receive the reward of His suffering!”
Sometimes we lose hope and feel like failures when we’ve not enjoyed all of the success in life we believe we should. This phenomena even has a name, we call it a “mid-life crisis.” It often strikes at the mid point of our years but it can truly disturb and disrupt anyone. Don’t despise small, seemingly unimportant assignments. God may have you there strategically.
Surprised by the Love of God
He had never felt God’s love before, until the Lord broke in at Onething!
After nearly ten years of trying to pursue God and feeling like he “wasn’t really getting anywhere,” Jeff L. came to Onething.
At the invitation of his son, Tyler, Jeff drove from Rockford, Illinois, to Kansas City, Missouri, for the Onething conference in 2014. What the 62-year-old investment advisor didn’t know is that it would change his life and walk with God forever.
Tyler, who was working in the Partners department at the International House of Prayer, scheduled a prophecy appointment for his father with Ed Hackett and Chris Ferguson, two leaders at IHOPKC.
But instead of simply speaking encouragement over him, Chris and Ed sensed the need to get to know Jeff a bit first. When they asked, Jeff said he was feeling “stalled out” in his walk with God.
This prompted Ed to share a dream he’d had. In the dream, Ed was a defensive football player who picked up a fumble, but was immediately attacked by four large linemen as he started to run toward the goal line.
As he crossed the line, the Lord highlighted Hebrews 12:1–2: “Let us lay aside every weight, and the sin which so easily ensnares us, and let us run with endurance the race that is set before us, looking unto Jesus, the author and finisher of our faith.”
What Chris and Ed didn’t know was that Jeff coached defense for a high school football team in Rockford.
The men connected, and Ed shared his own journey of how he felt like he had to work his way to God until he had a radical encounter with Him.
“When you don’t know if you’re walking with the Lord or not, there can be a heaviness, and of course sin comes in there and tries to take us out,” Ed said, recalling the dialogue.
He then asked Jeff, “‘Is this the day you want to drive a stake in the ground for Christ?’” Jeff replied, “Yeah, let’s do it.”
When the men finished praying, the shift was evident.
“It seemed like his countenance was just bright,” Ed said. “You know the change when someone knows that they know—it’s not about your words, it’s what Christ has done.”
Jeff knew that things were different, too.
“Before that, I’d never had a deep feeling of God’s love for me,” he said. “At that particular moment, it started. I could feel something, and it’s only gotten better and better since!”
From there, Jeff went immediately into the prayer room, which is held at the Kansas City Convention Center during Onething, to spend time with Jesus.
“Usually my dad’s always like ‘go-go-go,’ but he was in there for hours, just sitting there. He didn’t want to come out,” says Tyler.
Jeff then attended Onething sessions with Tyler and Tyler’s wife, Katie Jo. This blessed Tyler, who had been praying for his father “for a really long time.”
“I had my dad on my right hand and my wife on my left hand, and we were just worshiping the Lord,” he recalls. “Just to be in the presence of the Lord with both of them like that was really special.”
Since the conference, Jeff’s experience of God’s love has only grown. It carried him through an emergency heart bypass surgery in February (“He got a new heart spiritually, and then physically,” Tyler says. “We both had peace before the surgery”), and now he wants to transition from his career and football coaching in order to pursue God more.
Jeff also wants to come back to Onething and bring his friends, most of whom “aren’t big believers and wouldn’t understand unless I brought them there. I tell them, ‘You have to be in that environment and you’ll feel it.’”
And to anyone who has never been to Onething, or is thinking about coming, Jeff’s invitation is just as encouraging.
“You’ve got to come to this because it’s life-changing, for you and your family,” he says. “You’ve got to get there. You’ve got to see it for yourself.”
Prophetic ministry is offered to Onething 2015 attendees. Registration opens December 28 and is available on a first-come, first-served basis.
“These Waters” – Hosanna Poetry Live Sessions
A spoken word about overcoming doubt, & taking a step of faith. You were made to walk on waters! You can Trust God your Father, you can do greater things than walk on water.
“Two Scariest Lies in Our World Right Now” Francis Chan from Doctrine Youth Study – Bluefish TV
Francis Chan teaches about the sinful condition of mankind, and God’s willingness to punish sin in spite of His love for us.
- You’re a good person.
- God does not punish.
We need Jesus, we need what He did on the Cross for us. We need to be saved by Him.
Healed from “Suicide Disease” with a Touch and a Prayer
Brandice Hudson – 700 Club Producer
“Out of nowhere I just had this lightning bolt of piercing, burning pain. It was the most excruciating pain I’ve ever felt in my life, come into the upper part of my left cheek and just pierce straight through my face,” said Chris Carlson.
It was 1997, when 25-year-old Chris Carlson started having the attacks. At first they lasted a few seconds but every day they returned, more painful, and more often.
“Chris would have one of the shocks, the pain in her face. I could see it instantly. Her eye would close up, her face would kind of scrunch up,” said Chris’ husband, Dave.
“My face would swell up with the pain and so literally my face would constrict,” said Chris.
Doctors couldn’t find the cause, and the faintest touch on her face or exposure to light would trigger an episode. The pain from her sensitivity to light became so debilitating, she had to leave her job as an engineer and isolate herself from friends.
“Our house was becoming darker and darker and darker. I mean a light bulb would go out and we wouldn’t replace it. And so literally it was dark and emotionally it was dark,” she said.
Finally after six years, doctors discovered Chris had a rare, chronic pain condition called TN or Trigeminal Neuralgia. It affects the trigeminal nerve that carries sensation to the face and brain. It’s also known as the Suicide Disease. “Because people just can’t get out of the pain. And so they will eventually take their own life,” Chris explained.
“It was very stressful. It controlled everything about our lives. Every decision that was made was controlled by the pain,” said Dave.
For the next nine years, doctors treated Chris with medications, injections, and surgeries but they provided only temporary relief. Chris and Dave say during this time they prayed for everything – except healing.
“We prayed to get the right doctor who would know what was going on. We prayed to get the right procedure, but never did we know to just pray to take it away,” Chris said.
So with all her options exhausted, Chris asked God to help her cope with the pain.
“You have to help me. I can’t do this…. A lot of just looking for strength. I was understanding I was going to have to live with this. ‘Well if I have to live with it God, you have to help me to live with it! I can’t do it all by myself so you’re going to have to step in and help me.’”
In August 2012, Dave encouraged her to attend a healing service hosted by a local pastor, Tim McCarthy.
Chris said, “Afterwards Pastor Tim said, ‘Marlene will pray for people if you’d like prayer.’ So I look at Dave and I’m like, ‘Okay let’s go. Time to go home.’ He’s like, ‘Are you kidding? You are going up for prayer.’”
Reluctantly she went forward. “I said, ‘Look, I don’t believe in this whole healing business.’ And she looked and she says ‘Okay.’”
Marlene remembers, “I was like, ‘Okay, I’ll believe for you. That’s not a hard task.’ Then I remember feeling that it was very important to touch the side of her face.”
“Nobody ever touched my face because it would just elicit extreme pain. So she puts her hand on my face and says just a simple prayer. She’s getting very bouncy and joyous and she’s like, ‘Oh, I didn’t expect that. There it is!’ And of course I don’t say ‘Yes, I’m feeling heat in the back of my neck.’ She finishes the prayer and says ‘Okay.’ Then I say, ‘Thank you very much. Have safe travels home.’”
As the couple headed home a tingling sensation spread throughout the left side of Chris’ face.
“For 25 minutes I had that. And then I had nothing. My face just opened up. My eye opened and I had no pain. We were both just confused. Where’s the pain? It had been 15 years! It was gone.”
Chris was in awe of what God had done. “In that moment I was quiet. The pain was gone but there was no reason for me to be healed. I wasn’t in the Word all the time. I wasn’t actively asking for healing. And I was healed, only because He loves me.”
Chris and Dave say the miracle made them reevaluate their priorities. They quit their jobs and sold their belongings. Today they travel as missionaries and spread the word about God’s healing power.
“Because He’s absolutely incredible – that I could go from being so sick, to this. It’s just amazing and we have the most blessed life,” said Chris.