Posts tagged ‘faith’

July 16, 2013

Testimonies from Street Outreach (Tommy & Clive)

Tommy & Clive shared some incredible testimonies on Sunday about how God is working in our community and city through us sharing His love! — You can listen to those stories, and how they tied into Sunday’s sermon on our podcast

March 1, 2011

Foreclosed Doors Opened


This is something that has been in the making for the last two years.  We moved into our house two years ago in May 2009.  The reason we were looking to move was God had added Raine to our family!  We needed a bigger place to accommodate a family of four.  Vanessa found our large single family house on Craigslist and we looked at the house that same day.  The leasing agent who showed us our house also wanted to show us a townhouse, which sits right across from Smith’s Park.  However, for some reason, we felt strongly drawn to our house.

There was a twist to our house.  We found out it was under foreclosure, the owner was trying to work with the bank about refinancing the current mortgage, prior to us moving into the house.  Even with that knowledge, we still felt at peace about renting the house.  Shortly after we moved in, I specifically remember sharing with Vanessa that I felt God wanted us to have this house.  I only made this point as we are not gullible regarding the foreclosure/mortgage process because we have had mortgages ourselves.

The first summer (2009) in our new house was an incredible blessing for not only our family, but also for our friends and families with kids.  We have a generous backyard and were able to use it for many different activities:  we had a blowup pool with a slide for families at CITC who have kids to enjoy the summer days, we hosted engagements, birthday parties, men’s get togethers, parties, grilling in the backyard, CITC’s first chili cook-off, and many other events.  The generous space within the house also allowed us to act as CITC’s storage room.

However, after the first 6 months at our new house, we found out the owner was keeping all the rent money we had been paying him.  He had not been paying his mortgage since January 2008 or trying to refinance his loan with the bank.  In fact, he was trying to get the bank to do a short sale with one of his friends/relatives so they could purchase our house at a deeply discounted price.  Needless to say, we felt taken advantaged of.  Without going into all the details, we decided to stop paying rent until he could ensure us that the bank wouldn’t evict us at a moment’s notice.  This went on for several frustrating months until I decided to bring this up to my fellow elders.  I wanted to be accountable with the men who together lead CITC.  I submitted the situation to them and they suggested that my agreement was with the owner of the house, and not with the bank.  I followed their suggestion and wrote a large check for all the months of withheld rent and continued with our lease agreement.

Despite all the conflicts with the owner, we still made an agreement to resign the lease in May 2010.  If you are reading this, it probably doesn’t make any sense to you as anyone with a little common sense would move out immediately.   However, we always remembered what God had spoken to us about this house and wanted to hold firm on His promise.  We didn’t want to worry about why certain things had happened or how it would end.  We just believed in His promise and had faith that He would make it happen.  We continued to walk into the callings He had for us and trusted in God to fulfill His promise.

To make a long story short, roughly three months ago the owner mentioned to us that the house was available again for short sale.  Apparently, the previous “deeply discounted” offer from his friend/relative didn’t get approved by the bank.  He needed to re-list the house and make it available to everyone.  I then told him that I would be interested in making an offer.  As far as I know, our offer, which was almost as “deeply discounted” as the previous offer, was the only one made and presented to the bank.  We found out right before Thanksgiving the bank had approved our offer.  We closed on our house on January 18th, 2011.

I wanted to share this story as a testimony of God’s promise and His incredible faithfulness.  He had promised us our house and He delivered.  In all honesty, there were many times we wanted to move and not put our two young children in a very illogical situation.  The only reason that we stayed was God’s promise.  He had spoken that the house will be ours and it has come to past.  This is now our house!  You may have noticed I had used the reference “our house” even when we were renting it.  It’s because I wanted to stress the importance of God’s promise.  Before His promise is fulfilled, we are to live as it has already been done.

Hue

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January 26, 2011

A Renewed and Healed Mind

Read this testimony Derek sent, and be encouraged: God is not finished with you! He has so much more freedom for each of us to realize.

 

This is a testimony of God healing me of panic disorder and agoraphobia. For nearly 20 years of my life I had been on medications and other treatment for the irrational and debilitating fear associated with these sicknesses. For the past 15 months I have not needed medication or treatment. My healing has not been an instant one, instead it has been a journey as my mind continues to be renewed and I believe the report of Isaiah 53 and 54. As the fiery darts of the enemy come, Holy Spirit continues to lead me to refreshing places that quench them.

A significant part of my journey has been and continues to be understanding, believing, and acknowledging the report of how good God really is. God has used many scriptures and people in the church to bring about this healing, so many that I can’t mention them all here. Certainly, the most significant thing that God taught me through others at church is the truth that it is not God’s will for us to be sick. As I look back before God healed me, there were two errors in my thinking that kept me in sickness. They were that God was using my sickness to “teach me a lesson” or that my sickness was a “punishment” for sin in my life.

I’ve listed below a few of the most significant scriptures to me for the release of healing in my life. I trust as you read them in context that healing and freedom will come to you. Through the power of the blood of Jesus Christ be healed!

Isaiah 53:4-5 At the cross, Jesus took our grief, sorrow, sickness and pain and was wounded so that we may have peace and healing.

Isaiah 54:9-10 In the same prophecy announcing the coming of Jesus, God takes an oath to never be angry with us again, instead He promises lovingkindness, peace and compassion.

James 1:17 and throughout gospels: Every good and perfect gift (including healing) comes from Him. Every bad thing (opposite of a gift, a curse I guess) comes from the devil. Jesus’ example on this one is super encouraging. He knew the will of the Father and He never gave anyone sickness or cursed them to teach a lesson, train or punish, but He always exercised authority to bring healing and wholeness.

Acts 3:6 and others: The apostles didn’t ask God to heal someone, they exercised their authority (the authority given to them and us by Jesus) to bring healing and wholeness.

1John 4:18 God’s love casts out fear, and fear exists where there is a possibility for punishment. God is not counting our sins against us (2Cor 3:19) to punish us, instead he already counted our sins against Jesus.

Colossians 1:23 and 2:6 The instruction here is to carry on believing just as you first believed (when I first believed, I hadn’t done anything to earn God’s favor or reward, no prayer-other than my first, no quiet time, no reading of the Bible, fully sinful, unable to stop sinning, yet because I responded to the free gift He gave with His belief I was reborn). It is this same simple belief that we are encouraged to continue today.

John 15:27 Jesus gives His peace to us and commands us to “not let our hearts be troubled or afraid.” Where Jesus seems to give a difficult command (don’t be troubled or afraid) He actually provides the resource, “peace” so that we can exercise our authority to “not let our hearts be troubled or afraid”. He doesn’t give the command unless He has already provided the resources.

I have also been encouraged considering the powerful original Greek words used and translated most often into English as “save” and “salvation” in the books of the new testament. “Sozo” (Strong’s G4982) – to save, preserve, or heal and “soteria” (Strong’s G4991) – rescue, deliver, and health.

There are many more specifics of prophecies and prayer for me. If you are sick, I don’t intend for my experience to be a “secret sauce” formula for you. Holy Spirit is the “secret sauce” and He will teach us the truth about healing because He already knows how it works. My journey receiving healing from God did not happen overnight, I was not immediately convinced of these truths, it took time to process these scriptures.  I trust that your journey will be much shorter.

It is truly amazing how much my life changed when I really believed the report of God’s goodness and favor that never run out. As thankful as I am for my healing, I am even more thankful to be blessed with a greater understanding that God is for me and with me all the time and nothing will ever separate us. Glory to God, freedom for all who believe!

Derek

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