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Posted by: In: Uncategorized 23 Jul 2018 1 comment
Blog Post by Jessica White Davis

I have spent the past few days reading research on trauma.

  • How it affects us in every way- physically, emotionally, and spiritually.
  • How our brains store memories of trauma and how our bodies remember even what our minds don’t.

This picture represents trauma to me. It was an accident. My rational mind knew that. But as soon as I saw the shattered mirror, my mind and body betrayed me. Suddenly my heart rate sped up and I broke out in a sweat. I was driving a friend’s vehicle and less than half a mile from having to tell her what had happened. In my mind, she was going to explode on me. I pulled into her driveway and found her standing outside. Nausea rose and my hands were shaking. I got out of her truck and braced myself as I told her about the bird which had hit her mirror as I drove along the bay. Her response? She simply said ok let’s get some tape. I expected and prepared for an explosion. There was a trauma place stored in my mind and body which caused me to expect the worst. What I received instead was grace. The tape that held this mirror in place also mended something in me. Well, that and the prayer my mentor gently led me through later that evening….

Even the deepest traumas can be made whole in the hands of a loving Father. What we see as shattered may be just the thing God uses to heal something in us we could never heal on our own.Click To Tweet

 

Prayer

Father,  I commit my pain into your loving hands and ask that the blood of Jesus go into every cell of trauma and bring healing.  Remove every sight, sound, touch, taste, and smell associated with this trauma.  Thank you for putting the cross between me and this trauma, healing the joy center of my brain and bringing every cell of my body into its original design and vibration no longer ruled by fear and terror, all low-level anxiety must go. In Jesus name.  Amen.

Posted by: In: Uncategorized 16 Jul 2018 1 comment

Blog by Ann Kling

For Christmas, my neighbor gave me a Poinsettia with beautiful red leaves. By Easter, all the leaves had dried and fallen off. I started to trash it but noticed some small green leaves. So, I kept it, not knowing what to do with it. Even though I fertilized and watered it, the leaves are still small, and some fell off. Just as I was thinking of tossing it, I heard the words, “root bound”.

Ah, it needs a new and bigger pot. Simple solution. My husband reminded me that I couldn’t just transfer it to a bigger pot. There is a process for the plant to be able to thrive in its new home. He explained pruning back the part of the plant that is no longer growing, to take a knife and slice through the roots to loosen them from the compacted soil and to add new soil to the bigger pot for the plant to grow in. When something is root bound, it must go through this painful process or it will do no good to transplant it. I’m sure it will be thriving before long.

 

 

In need of transplanting?

This started me thinking about my life and the various times I was root bound and Holy Spirit had to cut my roots to transplant me to a larger area.

Jesus talked about how Father is a gardener and He will prune the dead branches. In Romans 8:28, “And we know that God causes everything to work together for the good of those who love God and are called according to His purpose for them.”

 

We can get root bound in all kinds of ways. Physically, emotionally, spiritually, socially, occupationally, etc.Click To Tweet I experienced being root bound spiritually after 10 years in my first church after salvation. In prayer, I kept asking, “Isn’t there something more?” My spirit hungered to grow. I felt the season I was in, was longing for a new one. Like a root bound plant, I needed a bigger pot. A place spiritually where I could grow and get more Son (Jesus). Pruning can be uncomfortable. So can staying in the same pot. I got to the point where the desire for more was stronger than the desire to stay the same. Even though it was a painful process to be pruned and the roots cut loose, God moved me to another denomination to reveal what I was missing.  Even though I missed everyone, my spiritual growth was exponential.

Another time in life, we were root bound by possessions. Jobs, status, etc. God pruned our roots by having us sell or give away all of our possessions and fly halfway around the world to live on a small island for a year to share the gospel. That was a severe root pruning, but it increased our faith, deepened our love for others, and enlarged our understanding of the Kingdom.

 

A few years later, I experienced another root pruning. I was emotionally root bound.  I had been programmed in childhood to be co-dependent and a people pleaser. Holy Spirit began to show me how my roots have been choked out and bound by this behavior. He revealed that living my life this way; I was not growing to the fullest potential and plan He had for me. He taught me what it meant to live a life of pleasing God and not people. Although this was a painful process of feeling emotionally raw from releasing old, unproductive ways that had me bound, it was so liberating how God healed me and replaced the pain with freedom and peace. God removed the emotional bondage, cut away that which wasn’t growing and loosened the roots in preparation for His plan and higher purpose for my life. I got a bigger pot to grow in! His rich, fertile soil once again produces much fruit. He expanded me and expanded my capacity to love people unconditionally.

 

 

Are you willing to submit to the process?

If God saw that you were root bound and not able to exhibit the beautiful fruit He created you to be, would you cooperate with Him and allow Him to prune your roots and transplant you into a spacious place?Click To Tweet

Or would you resist the pain involved and try to survive in your current condition? How long will it take for your desire to grow and change be stronger than your desire to stay the same?  There’s the pain of change or the pain of regret. Which category do you fall into?  Oftentimes, God’s promises are on the other side of change.

Lots of things can cause us to be root bound:

  • Generational influences
  • Negative Words
  • Fear
  • Confusion
  • Addictions
  • Emotional Scars and the list goes on and on

Allow Holy Spirit to reveal if you are root bound in an area and why. He will gently cut away the roots and set you free.

Psalm 18:19, “When I was fenced in, you freed me and rescued me because you love me.” CEV

 

Prayer

“Father, I give you permission to reveal to me any area of my life where I am root bound. I desire to be free to spread my roots in a spacious place and bear good fruit to show Your glorious love to others. I accept your gentle root pruning, so I can be set free. In Jesus name, Amen.”

Posted by: In: Uncategorized 20 Aug 2016 1 comment

by Brandy Edenfield

As y’all may have noticed from my last couple blog entries, I am a HUGE lover of words. I love the power of words, the way one word can create a picture in our minds. The way it can stir up strong emotions and move us to action. I like digging into the meaning of a word and asking God to show me what the picture of that word looks like and how it applies to me and my life.

I was reminded this morning of the first time I felt this “love for words”. God dropped a word into my heart through a friend just months before I gave my heart to Jesus. I met Kenny at the restaurant I worked at in Raleigh, N.C. when I was 19 years old. Kenny was a 24 year old, skinny, white guy from Chicago and also the Lead chef at the restaurant. He was kind to everyone and had a joy and acceptance that overflowed to every person he met, no matter how “bad” the person was. Everyone loved Kenny.

After several conversations, I learned that Kenny was a Christian rapper and to my great surprise, he was VERY GOOD! He introduced me to several of his songs and some other artists that he liked. One day, he shared his story of rescue from a life full of crime, drugs and gangs. In sharing his truth, he said “God reached into my nightmare and paid a ransom to set me free when nothing and no-one else was willing nor had the resources to do so.” He shared one of the songs he wrote that described this “ransom”. It talked about bondage and slavery in a way that touched my heart so deeply. He painted a picture of captivity that he was powerless to break free from.

I didn’t know Jesus personally at this point, so I couldn’t fully grasp what Kenny had experienced, but it felt real and powerful when he talked about Him and I found myself wanting to know more about HIS Jesus. I grew up knowing of Jesus and remembered all the stories and old hymns from growing up in church, but THIS Jesus seemed more dominant and commanding. Much more like a mighty superhero than an old story about some guy that lived thousands of years ago. We talked several times over the next few weeks and I listened to his CD over and over and that one song became my favorite and I memorized every word.

One night while laying in bed, I couldn’t fall asleep and those lyrics played continuously through my head. The word “ransom” hit me hard! I didn’t recognize the images in my thoughts as the Holy Spirit then, but I know now that He made that word relevant in a way I could understand it through pictures. In my minds eye, I saw a young woman snatched up off the street, and placed, kicking and screaming into a black van. She was beaten, gagged and tied up. There were several large men surrounding her in the back of this van. The picture then changed to an old abandoned warehouse where she sat tied to a chair in middle of a room, gagged and blindfolded. I could feel her terror and fear. It felt so real!

Then a phone call was made to her father, a ransom demanded to be paid to ensure her survival. The price tag was EXUBERANT! MASSIVE! And the girl slumped with discouragement, not knowing if it was even possible for him to obtain that amount of cash, specifically in the short period of time that they demanded it be paid in. Then she heard her father boldly say “DONE!! Anything for my precious daughter! Where and when?”

The time and location were set and the transfer was made. She was released into the arms of her father, met with tears of joy and relief. She asked how he made it happen? He responded “I traded all that I had to pay your ransom because you are the only thing that matters. Being reconciled to you was worth everything.” Her ransom was PAID and she was FREE!

RANSOM: Price paid to return a possession or person.

Jesus paid my ransom! He paid the HIGH price that ALONE, set me free from bondage and captivity.

Isaiah 43:1b (NLT)
Do not be afraid, for I have ransomed you. I have called you by name: YOU ARE MINE.

Posted by: In: Uncategorized 05 Aug 2016 0 comments

by Brandy Edenfield

 

Talking with a young lady last week, I had the opportunity to share with her one of the most profound “nuggets” of truth God has ever dropped into my heart. I’ve gone back to it time and time again over the last several years and I’ve shared it with others many times. Maybe it will settle into your heart as it has in mine.

I was in a season of transition, just moved from Baton Rouge to Foley, left an amazing church and some incredible friends and wrapped up 18 mos. of heavy, hard inner work with my mentor counselor, Murphy Toerner. Murphy and I had worked through some major rejection issues and most freeing, we did a lot of work in the area of “religion” and legalism in my life and my family. I came to Foley free of so many heavy weights that had held me captive for years.

God strategically placed us in an environment that, no doubt, was where we were supposed to be, we felt certain, as a couple that this was right. But being in this place challenged every mindset shift I had about myself and who God truly was in my life. There was a heavy spirit of legalism and a strong push by our leadership to “perform” and “look the part” as a Christian. Oh how this stirred up turmoil in my spirit. I wanted to walk in the freedom I had found; yet I knew I was suppose to be in this place. Many days in those first few months, I cried out to God asking “How could you call me back to such oppression and suffocation?” Brian and I would pray and fast, yet the answer was always the same, “This is where I want you to be.”

One afternoon it felt especially overwhelming at a women’s luncheon. I was sitting in the most gorgeous setting, enjoying some food and fellowship with these ladies, and I felt COMPLETELY out of place! They were all soft spoken, meek, proper “church” women. And me? I’m loud, opinionated and outspoken. And I simply did not fit with these ladies. So I created an opportunity to excuse myself and proceeded to have a giant pity party for the rest of the day.

Ancient Egyptian HieroglyphThe next day, during a conversation with Murphy, I burst into tears and told her of my experience the day before and how I just didn’t fit in with these ladies. “They’re so churchy and sweet and proper and God just didn’t make me like that. Why? Why didn’t He make me soft? His word says ‘Blessed are the meek.’ If that’s what makes us blessed, why didn’t He give me that?” AND HERE COMES THE NUGGET!!!!

Murphy, in all her infinite wisdom, says to me (in her most maternal, loving voice) “Baby girl, He did. You just have a wrong idea of what ‘meek’ means. In the ancient Egyptian language, many years ago, they often used pictures to describe things instead of words (hieroglyphs). Honey, do you know what the beautiful picture for meek was?” Through sniffles, I said “No ma’am.” She said “The picture for meek was a velvet covered brick. Soft on the outside but strong and unbreakable on the inside. Your inner strength is that, powerful and bold. But your heart shows on the outside and it’s kind and gentle and trustworthy because it’s real and authentic. He didn’t create you to BE like anyone other than His son.”

A VELVET COVERED BRICK! This truth has set me free in ways that I can not fully express. I’m free to be who He created me to be and not what He created someone else to be. I hope this sets you free to be uniquely you too!

Matthew 5:5 “Blessed are the meek, for they will inherit the earth.”

Posted by: In: Uncategorized 25 Jun 2016 2 comments

Brandy-Edenfield_blogbanner

“For He will deliver the needy who cry out, the afflicted who have no one to help.”
Psalm 72:12 NIV

Seasons of change in life can be so exciting. But if you’re like me, change can often bring with it a real spirit of fear & even insecurity. I thought I had crucified these two emotions in my life (well maybe not crucified them, but certainly minimized them SIGNIFICANTLY). It took a lot of time & prayer & work & it was hard, but I was walking in the victory of knowing these two emotions didn’t control me anymore like they once had.

Fast forward to this season of counseling others & me asking God to grow my compassion, mercy & understanding for the broken-hearted. “Help me to understand your grace on a deeper level.” WOW!!! Not a wise prayer! Because He is faithful and we truly gain these spiritual gifts ONLY from experience. So, I have found myself in new territory. A space in life where all things “black & white” somehow seem much more grey when you ask Him what His love & grace looks like in the “tough cases”. Truth is, I’ve been floundering a little, realizing I “know for sure” much less than I thought. ENTER FEAR & INSECURITY!

Then add in a new, exciting job for my spouse and some major changes in the life of my 16 year daughter in regards to her biological father and his family. Folks let me tell you, my world has flipped upside down in the last two months. The fears & insecurities that have stirred up inside me have been nearly paralyzing at times. I have TRULY not experienced such a storm of spiritual warfare in my life. It’s really been a daily battle to just to keep these horrible spirits from tearing me and my life apart. I’ve questioned myself and my life in ways I thought I never would. I’ve faced fear & insecurity in a physical way that I never have before. It’s humbling & it’s real. The spirits come on strong and battling them in prayer has been a “repeat real” that I’ve spoken over and over.

But I can see His grace & love for me so much clearer from this vantage point! It’s all about Him & finding myself in HIM & believing His love & plan for me is ONLY good. He wants me to have more love & grace & understanding for the broken-hearted because I am her. I am broken & damaged & in need of my savior & His grace.He alone can crucify these evil spirits in my life. Yet, through these tough times, I have learned that I need these lessons from Him because they teach me to keep my eyes on Him & to know that my strength & joy come from Him ALONE! I can not stop negative thoughts and fears from coming into my head, but I can choose to give them to God and not entertain them. God is my defender and in HIM I can place ALL my trust.

 

Posted by: In: Uncategorized 17 Jun 2016 1 comment
Ashton Brook photo

Ashton Brook

A little girl was flying a kite on the beach today. She would run and keep her eyes on it. As she ran, it would fly higher and higher. She would yell in excitement because she got the kite so high. As soon as she would look away from the kite, it would fall to the ground. Every time she would get it in the air, get excited, look away, it would fall…

Girl Beach KiteIs that just like our fellowship with God at times? We get it going good and its fun and exciting, but we get distracted and look to other things, then our fellowship with Christ falls away.

We have to pick it up and get it going again! Only this time we must keep our eyes and focus on HIM so it keeps going until it’s so high that we can tie off the kite and find rest in knowing that our fellowship is secured. We can then go help others with their kite and help them get there kites in the air! …but we still have to keep checking our kite, because sometimes they fall even when we think they are secure and WAY up in the air. The higher they are the less likely they will fall but we must stay focused…

Are you focused today on the only thing that will take you higher?