Blog Introduction

This blog is the story of how my husband and I faced the illness and death of two of our children. Each blog post is essentially a chapter in the story, so in order to truly understand it, you are going to benefit by starting at the beginning.
I hope you find our story touching, and in some way find comfort and hope through it as you face your own storms in life.

Thursday, May 17, 2012

The Retreat That Wasn't a Retreat, But a Victory, Part 2

The front of the room had been sectioned off with a scrim to provide an additional place of privacy and symbolic safety for those being prayed for.  Women often came to these retreats carrying heavy burdens, and during prayer, cries and sobs could be heard as these burdens were released.  No one needed to be gawked at, or "wondered about" during these times; they were private between God and the individual.  The scrim was a thoughtful feature.

I had managed to force myself to the front, and as I approached the scrim, one woman stood near the opening; she was the "gatekeeper".  Only a handful of leaders were praying at the time, so everyone had to wait their turn for the next available prayer partner.  I was next in line; waiting and watching, hoping that Pastor Dawn would be the one to pray for me, and not someone who knew nothing about my situation. I waited, and waited; the minutes seeming like hours.  Thoughts of leaving crossed my mind, but the tears were already beginning to form as I felt the fear and the years of grief rising to the surface. God was already starting the work. I must have looked a little freaked out because the "gatekeeper" reassured me it would be okay, and that I didn't need to be afraid. She didn't realize how prophetically she was speaking. Then she turned to me and said, "Pastor Dawn is going to pray with you!" She announced it as if it was a gift, and in my eyes, it definitely was. Pastor Dawn came over to me, took me by the arm, and started leading me into the veiled area, but before we took four steps in, I began to fall to my knees.  In that anointed environment, I actually felt the weight of everything I had carried all those years, and it was crushing.  Everything I had held in emotionally and spiritually now manifested itself in the physical realm, and anyone could see the immensity of it as I went to the floor under its heaviness. My face contorted into the image of one in agony; the screams of a soul in torment visible, but no sound came, no tears would release. As I remained on the floor, Pastor Dawn began to pray for my release, breaking the chains which held me captive for so long. She prayed with wisdom and with Godly authority. She commanded the head of the snake to be cut off; destroying the power the enemy had over me and his hold on my life. With the chains broken, I cried softly for a short while, and then sat peacefully contemplating what had just occurred.  Was it finally over?  Was I really free at last? I wasn't sure.

The evenings events were over, so Sharon and I walked slowly back to our cabin.  I was exhausted physically and mentally, and was eager to go to sleep. We lay in bed talking about the events of the evening, while I fought to keep my eyes open. I felt as if my body would fall into immediate deep sleep if I simply shut my eyelids, but it was not to be. I remained awake. The best I could muster was fitful episodes of light sleep, frequently interrupted by the torment of anxiety and restless discomfort that comes when the battle is still not over.  The next day would bring more than I, or Sharon, or Pastor Dawn could have imagined.  As Dawn would later state, "that was intense".

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