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I am one of those people who can sit in a room where prophetic ministry is being perofrmed and if 75% of those in room are prophesied over and I'm still never called out. Serriously, if everyone but 10 people in the room receive a personal prophesy, I am always in the group of 10 that did not get a prophesy. In fact, if they have meetings three nights in a row and only 10 people in the whole room don't receive words each night, I will be one of those 10 on each of the 3 consecutive nights. This has actually been a bit of a frustration for me and I've often asked God why He never gives me prophetic words by established prophetic ministers in a public setting. (I've only ever been called out once in my entire life, which was one time when Don Pirozok came to our church. And then, Don was doing a word of knowledge for a specific condition and did not know he was calling me out... but I was the only one in the room that night with that condition. So I got prophetic ministry ... that was my one and only time of ever receiving public prophetic minisitry.)
When I first went to the prophetic conference in St Louis (Oct 2-5), I was not even thinking in terms of receiving prophetic ministry. I came because I wanted to gain a better understanding of how to move in that gifting. But they did do a lot of personal prophetic ministry at the conference. And the folks minstering were established prophets who had a solid track record... Larry Randolf, James Ryle, Graham Cook and Jim Goll. So, as I watched lots of people getting "called out" and ministered to, I began to feel that old frustration welling up in me again. I silently began to ask God how come He never had a prophetic word for me. Was He mad at me?? Did I not have enough faith?? Why??
Well, Saturday was the last day of four day conference. We had a great morning session (two speakers). Then a new-wine luncheon. Then there was an afternoon workshop. I intended to go the workshop on "Getting started in the prophetic" by Jim Goll. But something went wrong with the room assignments. So I went to the room expecting Jim Goll and ended up in a Larry Randolf's "prophetic protocol" workshop instead. Also, I carefully choose to sit at the back of the room (the very last row) so I could sneak out and check out some of the other workshops too. I saw Craig Webber (a fellow new-wino) standing up in the front row. So I went up to greet him, fulling intending to come back to my carefully chosen back row seat. Craig, mischievious pastor that he is, decided to start praying for me... renewal style. (He also mentioned that this was Larry Randoff's workshop, not Jim Goll's.) I told Craig not to pray for me, because I would end up on the floor making a scene and I knew Larry Randoff hates it when folks get drunk and laugh out loud in his meetings.
Craig promised he'd help me up and get me safely to a seat by the time the workshop was ready to start. Well, it did not take much prayer for the Lord's presense/joy to overwhelm me. I ended up on the floor in no time flat and Craig sat on the floor beside me. He kept saying that "M" word ... you know... MORE! They did a worship song and I convinced Craig to help me up. He helped me to the empty seat right next to him in the 2nd row. Well, so much for being in the back row so I could sneak out to check out the other workshops.
Actually, Larry's teaching was great and I was really glad I ended up in his workshop...even if it was by accident. Then, after the teaching, he decided to do a bunch of prophetic ministry, and invited a friend of his to minister alongside of him. Well, they started calling out a lot of people around me. I found those old familiar frustrations welling up inside of me. How come everyone near me was being called out and I was being skipped? Would God ever have a word for me?
Now, I had been going through an unusually difficult period these past three months. This led to some insecurities about the my sense of self-worth and about whether or not God had a call on my life. Everyone around me was getting these awesome words. They were being told what their gifts were, what type of ministry God was calling them to, what types of doors would open up for them, etc. Many were being confirmed or established in their prophetic calling. I felt that I really needed some of this for myself. After all, I'd really been through the ringers lately. I was beginning to doubt my own ability to discern His voice. I sure needed God to speak some sort of confirmation into my life. So I started really begging God to have a word for me.
A few times Larry would look at me, then he'd just keep scanning the crowd. My mind started telling me, "See, you've been passed by again." Sigh. I started feeling really desperate for a word and let God know about it in a "no holes barred" manner. I even resorted to a very low blow... so low I'm almost embarassed to admit I said this to the Lord... "God, don't You love me anymore? You never call me out. If You loved me, You'd have a word for me." (Looking back, I can hardly believe I had the nerve to say that to God. But at the time I was feeling so desparate to hear from Him that I really was not praying fairly.)
Well, Larry was just about to wrap up the workshop. I went from desparation to self pity "Oh, rats. God passed me by yet again. Poor me..."
Then Larry pointed right at me and swept his arm to the left. "Something's happening in here with you ladies. I'm not sure exacatly what, but would 3 or 4 of you come up. The three ladies on my left were quite clearly together. But Larry had pointed right at me and I had been praying so hard for God to have a word for me. So, even through I was not positive whether or not he meant me, I decided to go up with the other ladies. (I am sure I would not have had the nerve to do so if he had not pointed right at me before he scanned his finger to the other ladies.)
Suddenly, the "poor me" was replaced with two other feelings. One was a bit of nervousness about being in front of all those people (along with a slight fear that maybe Larry would send me back to my seat saying he only meant the other 3 ladies). The other feeling was a jublient joy that God might actually have a word for me. I had been so hungry for one!
Larry lined us up (I was on the end), discovered the other 3 were together and had one of them move to stand on the other side of me so I would not feel out of place. Then he started ministering to the two ladies on my left. He was telling them about their giftings and callings and having words of knowledge about the ministries they were already in. I remembered feeling really happy for them, but also feeling very excited for myself because I knew I was next. Maybe God would give me an anointing or speak into my life or establish my calling. As a minimum, He would confirm to me whether or not I was hearing Him correctly in my intimacy and prayer times with Him.
Then I became painfully aware of what I had said to God -- "Don't you love me?" Ouch. How could I have said that to Him?? I immediately fell into silent prayer and told Him how sorry I was. I realized how graceous He was to have a word for me after the little tantrum I'd silently thrown.
Larry had just finished prophesying some incredible promises regarding future ministry and calling on the two ladies lives. I remembered thinking, 'I hope God has some wonderful promises/callings like that for me'. Then Larry started praying for the ladies. It looked like God really fell on them with power.
Then Larry moved to stand in front of me and focused his attention on me for a few moments. A big grin came across his face. I remembered thinking, "oh he's smiling. God must have something good for me." (Unfortunately, they were not making a tape of the personal prophesies. I don't remember what he said word for word, but this is the jist of it.)
"I see you as a little girl standing in a corner, very frightened. Sometimes your parents had a tendoncy to punish you very harshly-- much more harshly than the offense merited."
I nodded. That was true. I remembered an instance where I was about 4 and had been put into a dark closet all afternoon for spilling my milk at lunch. I was terrified and huddled in the corner. I was pretty pretty sure that was the instance he was referring to.
"I see that this one time you were punished very harshly for a relatively minor offense. When this happened, a very deep hurt entered into you and the enemy gained some ground in your life. God is coming with deliverance for you today. He is going to set you free from this because it has been effecting you, even as an adult."
I was hearing what he was saying, but I was feeling confused. Deliverance? Was that as in demonics? I remembered thinking, 'now all of those people are going to think I'm demonized. This could get awfully embarassing.' It wasn't at all the type of thing I hoped the Lord would address. I wanted Him to bring forth giftings or callings in my life. I wanted some type of confirmation of what I thought He'd been saying to me lately in my private devotional life. This was really out of the blue and quite unexpected. But I really did not have time to process my thoughts as I wanted to listen to what Larry was saying.
"Now, trust me, this is a word of knowledge. The things that are happening in your body are related to this hurt that entered into you from this overly harsh punishment. God is going to set you free from the effects of this today."
I was trying to listen. But it just did not make sense to me. What things were going on in my body that he might be referring to? I ran a mental inventory and could not come up with anything. What on earth was he talking about?
"It's not a matter of forgivness -- you're already dealt with that quite well. In fact, you are very good at walking through forgiveness, and that pleases God. But now God wants to address this hurt that you have taken into yourself when you were unjustly treated as a small child."
'Oh good,' I thought in response to the comment on forgiveness. 'I've really been trying hard to honor You Lord in the area of forgiving others. Thank You, Lord, for being pleased with my efforts in that direction.'
"God wants you to know that He loves you and He is not unduely harsh. He will not punish you severely for minor offenses like your parents did. No matter what you do, you can always come safely to Him and He will not reject you. He is a good and loving Father."
I knew that! I was mildly offended. I have had this wonderful intimacy with God and picture Him as a very loving and very good father. Why on earth would someone need to tell me something like that propheticly?? It just did not make sense to me. If this was really from God, then He knows this intimacy with Him that I've been walking in these past 5 years or so. Why on earth would God say something like that to me? It just did not make sense to me at all. I know Larry's reputation as a prophet, but I was beginning to wonder if he might be 'missing it' in my case. This just did not feel right to me. Yet I had so much respect for Larry, and could not imagine Him getting it wrong. So I was not sure what to make of this. And yet, he did have the word of knowledge about the harsh punishments I went through my entire childhood. They began to flash before my eyes, several incidents coming up.
Then Larry began to pray for me. I don't remember exactly what happened. I remembered thinking, 'is that all? No confirmation of what God has been speaking to me, no call of God on my life, no release of anointing or gifting? Is this it?'
Not much seemed to happen when he prayed for me. I think my arm shook a little, but I could not really sense anything happening in the spirit. I could not really sense the Lord's presense on me or anything. I knew there was a catcher behind me. I did not think I would be needing one, as not much seemed to be happening. After a little while, I decided to do a courtesy drop (something I almost would NEVER considering doing). But I had such a respect for Larry Randolf and did not want to embarass him by having it appear that nothing happened when he prayed for me. So I finally forced myself to collaspe backwards into the catcher's arms.
I figured I'd lay there for a few moments until attention was off of me and then get up and go back to my seat. Oddly, I felt the Lord's presense surround me as I lay there. I felt pretty disappointed with my experience at receiving prophetic ministry. Since I was down anyhow and the Lord's presense had shown up, I decided to talk to Him about it. I told Him that if this was all that He had for me in prophetic ministry, I really had not missed much by being passed by all those times.
"Teresa," He said, "you can plead with Me to have a word for you, but you can't control what I choose to say to you or what I choose to do for you."
I felt rebuked and loved all at the same time. I guess He was right. I was trying to get the Lord to speak to me about certain things and was not really open to listen to what He wanted to talk about. Of course, that does not work. I don't get to control God, He gets to be boss. So I gave in to Him and apologized.
"Now, Teresa, I am offering you a healing that you need. Will you accept it at My hand?"
"You mean I have a choice?" It never even occurred to me that I had the option to accept or reject what He was doing. I assumed it had just happened when Larry prayed for me.
"Yes, you have a choice."
"Ok, Lord. This wasn't what I hoped for, but it is probably what I need. I choose to accept what You are wanting to do here. I choose to accpet this healing from Your hand." I still felt a bit disapointed that God's agenda was different from mine, but I decided to buy into His agenda. I still had some reservations about some parts of the prophesy, but I was a bit afraid to talk to Him about them just then.
That night, Graham Cook taught on how God needs to discipline us to make us trustworthy to be His mouthpeice. Then he invited us to make a vow with God to speak only His words and stop grumbling, criticizing and complaining. In that vow, we gave Him permission to bring whatever fires and/or trials into our lives that were necessary for Him to mold us into someone He could use. And part of that vow was promising to God that we would not whine, complain or pull away when He choose to apply pressure to mold us and make us trustworthy as His prophets. Then he prayed for a release of prophetic anointing on those of us who willingly took the vow.
The next morning I flew home. I found myself grumbling and complaining during the flight. Then I suddenly remembered the vow I'd taken the night before and how my mouth was supposed to be set aside to speak only that which edifies or builds up or is a word from the Lord.
"Opps," I thought, "I blew that. I am sorry, God. I guess You are going to really come down on me hard now, since I just made that vow last night and broke it already."
"Teresa," He replied. "Do you remember what I told you propheticly yesterday afternoon?
"'God wants you to know that He loves you and He is not unduely harsh. He will not punish you severely for minor offenses like your parents did. No matter what you do, you can always come safelyh to Him and He will not reject you. He is a good and loving Father.'
"You were offended when I said that to you during the ministry time, but you really needed to hear it. Now you know why..."
Since then, several times I've made mistakes or been unfairly jumped on or past hurts have come up or whatever, where I've felt like God was going to be mad at me and clobber me. Each time, the Lord would remind me of that part of the prophesy... the part that made me suspect that maybe the prophet had "missed it" on my account -- the part where he was telling me something I already knew very well as though it was a new revelation to me. At the time of the prophesy, I had no idea how much I needed to hear that, but since then it has become both very meaningful and very precious to me. It has become very clear to me that God really knew what He was doing. He really ministered to me deeply when He gave me that word -- that word I was so disappointed with at the time I received it. Good thing God knows what He is doing, even when He is doing something very different from what I want Him to be doing.
I have a little footnote to add to this story. Remember how Larry Randolf had the word of knowledge about 'the things that were happening in my body being' related to the hurt that I had taken into myself as a young child? Remember how I puzzled over it? I had no clue what he was referring to regarding 'things that were happening in my body'. Well, God in His divine sense of humor, used another Larry (my friend Larry Wilson) to explain that one to me. I had shared the prophesy with Larry sortly after I got back from the prophetic conference. I mentioned to him how everything made sense to me now except that word of knowledge about what was happening in my body.
Larry Wilson instantly knew what that referred to and explained it to me. As soon as he did, it made perfect sense to me as well. Ed (my husband) and I are unable to have children and the doctors say it is my condition, not Ed's, that prevents us. In fact, back in the 1st half of 1995, we saw a specialist who tried to help us have children, and that was unsuccessful. My friend Larry said that perhaps that was the condition that Larry Randolf was referring to. Oddly, that was the word of knowledge that had gotten me up for the prophesy from Don Pirozok last April... "a woman who is unable to have children". I guess it will be easy enough to test and see if that was the physical condition the prophesy referred to. If it was, I guess I should get pregnent in a few monthes or so.... I will let you know what happens just as soon as I find out.
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