Partial fulfillment of Christian Leadership University Course
COU301 Prayers That Heal the Heart
By: Denise Balasa
(reprinted with permission)
This course; Prayers That Heal The Heart, has been a beneficial course to me. I have learned a lot of things through it. It has been enlightening and has also confirmed a lot of things the Lord has shown me throughout my life.
Where to start is the real question before me. When I first started to read the book, Prayers That Heal The Heart, it took me a long time to get through the first five chapters, which put me behind immediately in the course. But I spent so much time putting into action everything I was reading. I went through a lot of tears in those first few chapters. The book has a way of getting right down to the core of the heart. This book will prove to be invaluable in the ministry of counseling.
Let me start with the counseling I received in my inner thought life. I received inner healing in my walk with the Lord. I learned that reasoning is a lack of faith, which I never looked at like that before. I prayed and renounced the spirit of doubt in myself. That was a few months ago, and though every now and then the enemy plants thoughts in my mind about doubt, I now recognize it and cast away any thoughts that do not line up with the Word of God.
My prayer life has totally changed through this course. I no longer just pray. I ask the Lord to direct my prayers. When I am praying for others in our prayer line at church, I ask them what they need prayer for then I wait for the Holy Spirit. I have always in the past just jumped in and prayed. Sometimes I would feel the presence of the Lord, other times it would just be me praying. Well, now I wait for the Holy Spirit and follow His instructions while I am praying. The fire that has been coming upon me during prayer is unbelievable. A recent Sunday, I literally was shaking from His presence in corporate Sunday morning prayer. What is so important to me is that it is not I praying, but the Lord. As I learned in this course, it is imperative to wait for the guidance of the Holy Spirit in all areas of counseling. It is something I have known about doing, but never had the patience to wait upon Him. He has healed me of my impatience.
Through this course and others, I have learned to journal my prayers. I have received so much growth, just from this one source of communicating with God. I see Him in a whole new light. It has been beneficial to me in respect to my view of God and how He views me.
I also received ministry from God, when writing out a prayer in my journal. He showed me that I am my own worst critic. That I am harder on myself then He is on me. He is not the accuser of the brethren, satan is. So, when I am critical of myself, whose voice am I listening to? Not the Lords. This was a breakthrough for me and for my walk with the Lord.
I received ministry in negative expectations and inner vows. I really need to pay close attention to my thought life and what I speak out of my mouth. I have fallen prey to this a lot throughout my life. I have always said that I wear my emotions on my sleeves. That is not good because I have had a fixed idea in my mind about how I perceived people perceived me and how they were going to treat me. This is not at all how the Lord intends for me to live. I put faith into what I believed: that no one likes me, I am not worthy, pretty much a lot of the thoughts on the list.
One area goes all the way back to my childhood. I was always called stupid and dumb. Because of others telling me these things, I really believed I was dumb and stupid. God has healed me of that. I have the mind of Christ. I now put faith in God and His thoughts and have put away every thought that does not line up with the Word of God. Though this is a habit that has taken me my whole life to perfect, God has moved mightily in me to overcome. I have many Scriptures to take the place of thoughts. I am living the Word of God and His thoughts, not mine.
As I am looking at the assignment for chapter four of Prayers That Heal the Heart I am noticing something I would like to share. This is to get an idea of what I was going through while reading this book. I want to share what the first thing is I said, I have to say it is taking me a long time to read this book. I have to have a box of tissues next to me as I am reading it. Well, that says a lot and it says what it was like for me at the beginning of this book. I went through so many changes in my spirit. It flowed over into my flesh, praise God. I went through the cleansing of the Holy Spirit.
I received healing from traumatic pictures I had in my mind. I really needed a deep healing from the hurt of being a born-again Christian who had four miscarriages. First of all, I realized it was a generational curse. But once that was gone, I needed the healing of my heart. I went into prayer and allowed Jesus to show me where He was when I lost the last baby. This baby was the latest one, and I was in shock when it happened. You see, God has already blessed me with two children, so a miscarriage was the furthest thing from my mind. I was shocked when it happened and went into a severe depression around the time the baby was due. But, lets get back to where Jesus was. I went into prayer and asked Him to show me where He was and what He was doing when this happened. I saw Jesus holding me, crying with me. He told me He feels my pain. That there is nothing I have ever gone through that He wasnt present with me. I then saw Him holding the baby, and He told me that this baby is in heaven, that every baby of mine that has died is with Him. One day, He told me, I will be with them and meet each one of them.
I had such a release from this pain. I have had the Lord tell me before that all of my babies were with Him, but I never saw Him in the pictures. Seeing Christ and hearing Him was such a comfort to me. I now have a new scene to look at, one with Christ there with me, and not myself going through it alone, with Christ in the distance. He was there when it happened and it makes perfect sense to allow Him to show me Himself there. He is my Comforter.
Throughout the years I have been through a lot of things, as I am sure most people have. I have hung unto many negative pictures from my past. I have received healing from a lot of them. It seems that when the Lord removes one and replaces it with His divine pictures, another one comes up. He is so good and wants me to walk in total victory. I know that I am growing in a lot of areas in the short time I have been taking courses through Christian Leadership University. It is amazing how much the world and its cares have affected me.
I am learning to focus on the imperishable things of God and not on the perishable things of this world, to live in the vision of Jesus and His omnipotent presence in my life.
The book Blessing and Curses: You Can Choose, is another outstanding book that taught me a great deal of things which I did not realize were true.
Being a Bible study teacher, I have taught on many different things. I did a study for the Bible study on generational curses. This book did teach me some things that I did not know and found to be very useful in my personal life.
I realized that there were some generational curses still at work in my family. I realized by taking a close look at my fathers side of the family, that there seemed to be untimely deaths at very young ages, my brothers death at age 32 included. I then realized that the four miscarriages I have had fell under that curse. I believe that it was a curse of witchcraft.
My Grandfather carried an unusual ability to heal burns. If someone was burned, no matter how little or big, he would blow on the burn with his mouth, and the burn would be gone in a few days. But, this Grandfather was as far away from the Lord as anyone I know. I have been told that this ability would be passed down from the carrier to another person. I do not know how it would be passed down, but the person would consciously do something to pass it down. My Grandpa never did pass it down before his death. The first time I heard about this, I was a Christian, and it left a bad feeling in me. I could not put my finger on it, but something seemed strange about the whole thing. I even mentioned to my Dad that something didnt seem right to me. My Dad said that because it was something good, what harm could come from it? What a revelation this was to me when I read in this book and realized this was probably a form of witchcraft. Because it was something that was passed down, I really felt led of the Lord to break the generational curse that came from it. I broke that curse as soon as I could. That curse no longer has a root in me or my household, praise God.
I did receive healing in the relationship between my Mother and myself. My Mother went to be with the Lord two years ago. I can honestly say that I had no feelings of guilt after death. But, after reading this book, the Lord did convict me of not forgiving her for some things that had happened. My Mom had a mental illness and was a difficult person to be around at times. The Lord revealed to me that I needed to forgive her of some very hurt feelings I had. I did do this and repented to the Lord. I praise God that even though Mom is with Him, she is still blessed by me forgiving her.
Another curse was brought on my family, again from my Fathers side. What is so amazing is that my Great-grandfather was a pastor. His son, my Grandfather, is the one who has brought curses on the family. He hated the Jews and made it very well known. I have forgiven my Grandfather and have repented for that sin in our family. It was so enlightening to realize why so much has happened in the family. There have been so many people who have died young. My Aunt Shirley has lost three of her four children, two of them in separate accidents and the other from a heart attack when she was in her early thirties. I pray that my Dad will have a revelation about this himself.
Legalism was another area of my life that I needed healing from. The Holy Spirit revealed to me that there were many times when I had used legalism in my walk with the Lord. I confessed and repented. I am leaning more and more on abiding in Christ.
Carnality is another downfall I had to repent of. Throughout the beginning of this course, in my journal, the Lord told me over and over about walking in my flesh. I am allowing Him to heal this area of my life as I repent for it. It is a daily, or moment-by-moment, sacrifice to the flesh. It is an ongoing ordeal, not just a one-time thing. I am learning to become crucified with Christ, that it is no longer I that live, but He who lives in me. The Spirit of the Lord is alive in me and working out all things in me for good. I am keeping my eyes not on the circumstances, but at the outcome. Praise God!
I received conviction from the Holy Spirit in regards to my children. The Lord revealed to me that there have been times when I have abused the authority He has given me over my own children. I was convicted of being too controlling over them. I repented and confessed to the Lord, and I also asked my children to forgive me for this.
Through this book God made known to me that I really need to watch what comes out of my mouth. I didnt realize that I could actually invoke a curse on myself or others by what came out of my mouth. There have been things I have said in my life that I never knew were imposing a curse on myself. He says that His people perish from lack of knowledge. I repented and am very careful now about what comes out of my mouth. Not just what I say about myself, but others also. I lean on the Holy Spirit before I open my mouth. I never knew that even when joking with my kids or others I could actually be putting a curse on them. All this information has been very beneficial to me. I leave this area of my life in the Lords hands and He does immediately let me know if I have said something I need to take back.
I learned so much from this book about sowing and reaping. Not just in tithes and offerings, but also in our actions and even our thoughts. I was asked to discuss the root meaning of Matthew 7: 1-2. This is what I wrote: It is from the verb translated to judge that the English words critic and criticize comes from. When I criticize others, especially our fellow believers, I am pronouncing judgment on them. I am disobeying Scriptures and am guilty of rebellion toward God. If I judge others the same measure of judgment will be used on me. This was a revelation to me. I had to repent big time of this. It is an area that no Christians wants to admit they are guilty of. The truth is, I am guilty of this. I confessed and repented to the Lord for my rebellion against Him. I take this offense to God very seriously. I was rebelling against Him by the way I judged others, especially fellow believers. I require and need the help of the Holy Spirit every day in this area. This is an area that falls under the flesh, and I moment by moment, lay down my life and abide in Christ. It is something I cannot change on my own, but Christ can change me and my thought life.
I found the area of soulish prayers to be very enlightening. I learned what a soulish prayer is, which knowing what it is helps me to recognize it. I ask the Holy Spirit to teach me to pray and to pray through me. In doing this I am praying in the will of God. Praise God that even my prayers are not my own, but His.
The Lord revealed to me sins of my Father and cause of curses in my ancestry. He revealed several to me which I took to the cross. I have forgiven my ancestors and have repented for these sins and curses. I praise God, that He wants us to walk in total victory, not just over my own sin, but also over sins of our ancestors and curses they invoked.
God has given me authority to become His child. I have learned through this course to exercise this authority. Like the Israelites, God is showing me each step I need to take to possess victory and walk in the promises He has given me. God has given me authority over the enemy. God revealed to me that the enemy has had a field day with me over the years. In Christ, I am exercising my authority to overcome all the powers of the enemy. This book has been a blessing to me. The Lord wants to not only continue to walk with me into the blessings, but He wants to walk my husband and children into them, also. He is the way, the truth and the life. His work on the cross is finished; He has made the way that we should walk in. He says to follow him and He will lead me into the Promised Land.
God reinforced what I already knew about my spiritual warfare with the enemy. This was informational to me because it took me even deeper into this war. God revealed even more to me. He continually is teaching me things. The following is what He showed me.
To obtain access into the kingdom of God and His promises, I have a battle before me. God has given me the tools to fight this battle against the enemy. I overcome the enemy by the Word of my testimony and the blood of Jesus. It is at the cross that Christ defeated Satan, and his hold on me. I am to take the kingdom of God by force, with the Word of God. My mind is the battlefield and I need to dwell on the Word of God, and speak it out of my mouth and the enemy will not be able to come against it. I need to press forward regardless of what the enemy throws at me. He has been defeated. God has revealed to me that I need to keep focused on His promises and look at the world through His eyes. In His eyes, I have victory, I have overcome, and I have His presence at all times within me. These are the things I must dwell on. But, I am to be aware of the warfare, not to give the enemy a foothold to try to pull me down. I must keep my eyes and my focus on the Word of God and fix my eyes upon Jesus.
What was a new revelation to me is where my focus needs to be. My eyes fixed upon Jesus and the Word of God is the revelation. What I mean is that I now have heart knowledge of this. To keep looking forward to the end results as Christ did. He, for the joy set before Him, the joy of the outcome of the cross, endured the cross. I need to keep my eyes fixed upon the end and not the circumstance before me. The enemy wants me to get caught up in all of lifes circumstances, keeping my eyes fixed on them. Well, I have news for the enemy: my eyes are fixed upon Jesus.
From the book, You Can Be Emotionally Free, I experienced healing from something that had happened a long time ago. It was amazing to me that God brought up the incident. I did not realize it, but I had held onto this bitterness for many years. It happened at school, I was in either 7th or 8th grade. This teacher has long since become a writer for a local newspaper and every time I would see his picture, the memory of that day came flooding back in my mind. No matter how much I tried to forgive him, I still had a root of bitterness in me from it. God led me to choose this incident for healing in one of the exercises from this book.
This is what I wrote God did: I was embarrassed by a teacher in front of the class. He called me a fool in a loud voice, getting right into my face. As I went into prayer, the Lord took me back to the schoolroom where it happened. Jesus walked in the door just as the teacher was calling me a fool. I looked at Jesus, and He looked at me with sympathetic eyes. He walked over to me and hugged me. He told me that He loves me and He loves the teacher also. He told me I needed to forgive the teacher. I looked at the teacher and told him he hurt my feelings and embarrassed me in front of the class. He told me he was sorry, that he did not mean to hurt me and he asked me to forgive him. I forgave him.
I received healing from a root of bitterness I had towards a family member. In working through the Contributing Strands Worksheet, the Lord has removed this root of bitterness from me. This is such a testimony to me. I held onto this bitterness for three years. I forgave her, but I could not look at her without feeling bitterness. When I started the worksheet, I knew that this was the one thing that I have been hanging onto. God wanted me released from it. The Lord led me in prayer and showed me where He was and what He was doing when the incident took place. He gave me a new scene to look at. I saw Him holding my daughter and speaking to her. She was the one that was really hurt in this incident. I can and have been able to see her without any bitterness in my spirit at all. He then, through the new truth Bible meditation sheet, led me to a story in the Bible. I was shocked when I read this story and angry that I did not read it before. I was not really angry, angry, but I wished that this would have been revealed to me years ago. It would have saved me a lot turmoil that I have gone through because of bitterness. He revealed to me the root of the problem in the spirit realm, that my sister-in-law is actually not to blame. I needed to forgive her, for she knows not what she is doing, and that there is a spirit of jealousy that needed to be taken care of. I have to say that God healed me completely of this hurt. The incident has been totally forgiven and the root of bitterness has been pulled out. I feel such a release way down deep in my spirit from this. I praise God, that through this worksheet, in just a few days He has healed me. He has healed me of something I held onto for three years. I am attaching the worksheets from this, New Truth Bible Meditation worksheet and Memorial Stones Celebration worksheet.
I have learned invaluable information from this course. I know I finished it later than I should have. But, I have applied the principles I have learned through this course to my life. I read these books slowly, absorbing what they were teaching. Now that I am finished with the course I will be reviewing all the materials over and over. It is impossible to absorb everything in just twelve short weeks. I praise God for leading me to this course. He definitely has His hand on this course. I have received confirmation after confirmation on a lot of things I have been learning through it. I have learned things that will have an everlasting impact me. Praise be to God.