Discernment: Does family heritage matter in the Kingdom? Maybe

HeritageQuestion: Does my family heritage matter if I am a Believer who’s heritage is the Kingdom of heaven?

Answer: No and Yes.

No: The moment we become Believers in Christ Jesus we are immediately adopted into the eternal Kingdom (Ephesians 1:5). We no longer belong to the human heritage but to the Creator of the universe. Essentially, the human methods of separating individuals by race, ethnicity, and tribe are moot. We either belong to the Creator of the universe or we belong to Prince of the Power of the Air (see Ephesians 2) aka the Father of Lies (John 8:44).

Yes: There are some communities that seem to have persistent troubles that seem woven into the fabric of the culture. In Christian outreach, one must consider the following when trying to reach communities who are not Believers. If there is any cultural history of tribalism, alcoholism, ethnic cleansing, sexual slavery, child soldiers, black on black crime, multiculturalism (forced secondary to slavery), etc. these persistent issues have a spiritual root deeper than the person or immediate family.

Exodus addresses this issue of generational/bloodline spiritual roots.

“You shall not bow down to them or worship them; for I, the Lord your God, am a jealous God, punishing the children for the sin of the parents to the third and fourth generation of those who hate me, but showing love to a thousand generations of those who love me and keep my commandments.” – Exodus 20:5-6

Often in communities where there is hardness towards each other and God, there are unresolved ancestry spiritual roots. One of the first things outreach workers should ask when one meets unbelieving individual(s) is “What is your heritage?”. This will give one a greater picture of the person’s potential spiritual baggage. If the unbelieving individual(s) have no idea of their heritage, this does not mean there are no spiritual roots. It may mean the individual(s) or community may be dealing with “orphan”, “abandonment”, or “trauma” spiritual blocks in addition to spiritual roots of “war” and “oppression”. Now think of communities where this might apply such as communities where there is no knowledge of where they derive or communities where there was trauma such as descendants of slaves or indigenous people who were pushed off their land into camps so new settlers could have a place to call home. Might these communities have some massive blood line spiritual roots to address before they will receive anything about God? These communities often state they would much rather give honor to their ancestors who were oppressed than give honor to a God who they believe was the source of turmoil in their communities (i.e. colonial “Christian” missionaries participating in slavery or land stealing practices).

Question: How does one in outreach begin to help individuals and communities with bloodline roots to become free and receive Christ Jesus?

Prayer.

PRAYER FOR HEALING THE FAMILY TREE

“Heavenly Father, I come before you as your child, in great need of your help; I have physical health needs, emotional needs, spiritual needs, and interpersonal needs. Many of my problems have been caused by my own failures, neglect and sinfulness, for which I humbly beg your forgiveness, Lord. But I also ask you to forgive the sins of my ancestors whose failures have left their effects on me in the form of unwanted tendencies, behavior patterns and defects in body, mind and spirit. Heal me, Lord, of all these disorders.

With your help I sincerely forgive everyone, especially living or dead members of my family tree, who have directly offended me or my loved ones in any way, or those whose sins have resulted in our present sufferings and disorders. In the name of your divine Son, Jesus, and in the power of his Holy Spirit, I ask you, Father, to deliver me and my entire family tree from the influence of the evil one. Free all living and dead members of my family tree, including those in adoptive relationships, and those in extended family relationships, from every contaminating form of bondage. By your loving concern for us, heavenly Father, and by the shed blood of your precious Son, Jesus, I beg you to extend your blessing to me and to all my living and deceased relatives. Heal every negative effect transmitted through all past generations, and prevent such negative effects in future generations of my family tree.

I symbolically place the cross of Jesus over the head of each person in my family tree, and between each generation; I ask you to let the cleansing blood of Jesus purify the bloodlines in my family lineage. Set your protective angels to encamp around us, and permit Archangel Raphael, the patron of healing, to administer your divine healing power to all of us, even in areas of genetic disability. Give special power to our family members’ guardian angels to heal, protect, guide and encourage each of us in all our needs. Let your healing power be released at this very moment, and let it continue as long as your sovereignty permits.

In our family tree, Lord, replace all bondage with a holy bonding in family love. And let there be an ever-deeper bonding with you, Lord, by the Holy Spirit, to your Son, Jesus. Let the family of the Holy Trinity pervade our family with its tender, warm, loving presence, so that our family may recognize and manifest that love in all our relationships. All of our unknown needs we include with this petition that we pray in Jesus’ precious Name. Amen.”

One of the first questions an outreach worker may be asked if they are a person of color who is ethnically ambiguous is “Where are you from?”. This simple question is an easy way to open the door to discuss family heritage and assess spiritual roots. You do not need to be a person of color to ask the outreach community the same question “Where are you from?”. Moreover, you do not have to pray the exact prayer above to free the outreach communities from spiritual blocks. But it is important that you do pray a prayer like it in order to release the individual and community from generational blocks in their home, culture, and community that blocks them from receiving Christ Jesus. – AMEN

Related Post: Heritage and Healing
Prayer: Saint Joseph, Patron Saint of Family Life
Photo Credit: Native American Lost Souls Geneaology

Dating & Marriage 101: Hey you! Wanna have some fun? Let’s Do it!

counterfeitThere’s a fun Cole Porter song called “Let’s Do it”.  It’s a cute early jazz standard about falling in love.  Have you ever found yourself bopping away to songs like this 1928 ditty and then find yourself going, “What?!”

When the little bluebird
Who has never said a word
Starts to sing Spring
When the little bluebell
At the bottom of the dell
Starts to ring Ding dong Ding dong
When the little blue clerk
In the middle of his work
Starts a tune to the moon up above
It is nature that is all
Simply telling us to fall in love

And that’s why birds do it, bees do it
Even educated fleas do it
Let’s do it, let’s fall in love
Cold Cape Cod clams, ‘gainst their wish, do it
Even lazy jellyfish do it
Let’s do it, let’s fall in love
I’ve heard that lizards and frogs do it
Layin’ on a rock
They say that roosters do it
With a doodle and cock
Some Argentines, without means do it
I hear even Boston beans do it
Let’s do it, let’s fall in love

When the little bluebird
Who has never said a word
starts to sing Spring spring spring
When the little bluebell
At the bottom of the dell
Starts to ring Ding ding ding
When the little blue clerk
In the middle of his work
Starts a tune

The most refined lady bugs do it
When a gentleman calls
Moths in your rugs they do it
What’s the use of moth balls
The chimpanzees in the zoos do it,
Some courageous kangaroos do itLet’s do it, let’s fall in love
I’m sure sometimes on the sly you do it
Maybe even you and I might do it
Let’s do it, let’s fall in love – Cole Porter

 

The last time I really listened to these lyrics, I had that “What?!” moment.  While the song speaks “innocently” of doing it or falling in love, there seems to be an undertone of something more.  The phrase do it in 20th and 21st century American culture has a whole meaning of its own and we’re not talking love.  I don’t recall learning in biology class about lady bugs and moths doing it or falling in love as Mr. Porter describes.  But I do recall learning in biology about their mating and reproductive habits.  I mean seriously, is he really encouraging us to be like lady bugs?  Sorry, I’m not signup up for that.  Double entendres are used often in media and could it be that this song is one of the earliest examples of media being used to promote something that counters God’s natural design.  If we were to do it like the lady bugs or bumblebees, we’d be purely mating and reproducing without any regard for the love God brings through the husband wife union.

Love is patient, love is kind. It does not envy, it does not boast, it is not proud. 5 It does not dishonor others, it is not self-seeking, it is not easily angered, it keeps no record of wrongs. 6 Love does not delight in evil but rejoices with the truth. 7 It always protects, always trusts, always hopes, always perseveres. 1 Corinthians 13:4-7

But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, Galatians 5:22

Love is patient, love is kind and is not jealous; love does not brag and is not arrogant, 1 Corinthians 13:4

Not once in any of these references does Abba describe or promote doing it.  But he does spend an extra amount of time describing how we should actually avoid the passion that this classic and other popular songs alludes we should desire.

For this is the will of God, your sanctification; that is, that you abstain from sexual immorality; that each of you know how to possess his own vessel in sanctification and honor, not in lustful passion, like the Gentiles who do not know God; Never harm or cheat a Christian brother in this matter by violating his wife, for the Lord avenges all such sins, as we have solemnly warned you before. God has called us to live holy lives, not impure lives. Therefore, anyone who refuses to live by these rules is not disobeying human teaching but is rejecting God, who gives his Holy Spirit to you. But we don’t need to write to you about the importance of loving each other, for God himself has taught you to love one another. Indeed, you already show your love for all the believers throughout Macedonia. Even so, dear brothers and sisters, we urge you to love them even more. Make it your goal to live a quiet life, minding your own business and working with your hands, just as we instructed you before. Then people who are not Christians will respect the way you live, and you will not need to depend on others. 2 Thessalonians 4:3-12

Flee immorality. Every other sin that a man commits is outside the body, but the immoral man sins against his own body.  1 Corinthians 6:18

I am afraid that when I come again my God will humble me before you, and I will be grieved over many who have sinned earlier and have not repented of the impurity, sexual sin and debauchery in which they have indulged. 2 Corinthians 12:21

The acts of the sinful nature are obvious: sexual immorality, impurity and debauchery. Galatians 5:19

But among you there must not be even a hint of sexual immorality, or of any kind of impurity, or of greed, because these are improper for God’s holy people. Ephesians 5:3

Put to death, therefore, whatever belongs to your earthly nature: sexual immorality, impurity, lust, evil desires and greed, which is idolatry. Colossians 3:5

Marriage should be honored by all, and the marriage bed kept pure, for God will judge the adulterer and all the sexually immoral. Hebrews 13:4

One of the things I’ve come to learn through Bible study is that repetition counts.  Anything a writers spends time repeating topics and themes, we should take notice that this is an area of high importance to Abba.  God calls the believer to live a life of purity NOT PASSION.  Anything that is encouraging us to live in PASSION is counter to Christ (yep that’d make it anti-Christ) and will earn us a one way ticket to the prince of the air’s promise land.  If you like it hot and steamy, you’ll get an eternal, endless supply of it there.  We’ve all seen the romantic comedies, soap operas, or friends display the “romantic love” (translation = lust).  Our imaginations get going and we ourselves become immersed in the passion that Abba tells us to avoid.  Something inside of us says do it.  That something encourages us to pursue that hot and steamy mess that violates and defiles the temple that Abba gave you.  That something is not of Christ but of the anti-Christ.

Here’s a wonderful excerpt from Grace to You
God’s will is that you be sanctified. Now what does exactly that mean? Let’s get real practical. Four things he says. One, that is, i.e., that you abstain from sexual immorality. Now we’re getting real practical. Stay away from sex sins. Somebody says, “How far away?” Far enough away to be separated from all sexual sin – very practical. This is God’s will. Sometimes you have a couple come in and want to get married and they sit in the office and I say, “Tell me a little bit about yourself. When did you meet?” And so forth and so forth. And through the years, I’ve always asked a question somewhere on the line, “Are you engaged in sinful sexual behavior?” It’s a direct approach. And then you see these, sometimes shining faces saying, “No,” and you know, “We’re waiting until marriage.” Sometimes these faces fall and sheepish looks and my response is, “Well, if you’re conducting yourself knowingly out of the will of God and are unwilling to obey the will of God which is revealed, then why would you assume that it’s the will of God for this relationship to go on?” Sometimes they’ll say, “You know, we think it’s God’s will for us to get married.” The first question is, “Are you committing sexual sin together? Because if you are you’re not in the will of God now. You got to back up. Go back, reestablish that relationship on a pure level. And when you have been obedient to that which is known to be the will of God, you’ll be in a position for God to disclose to you, pretty clearly, what is his will about what is not revealed.” Stay away from sexual sin. And of course it’s ubiquitous. It’s everywhere, always has been, there’s nothing new under the sun, just comes in different forms. Stay away from sex sin. And he gets more specific, verse 4, “Each of you should know how to possess his own vessel,” that’s body, “in sanctification and honor.” Handle your body to honor God. Handle your body in a pure way. Keep your body pure. Continuing reading sermon…HERE

Now unless you’re having hot and steamy fun with your spouse, I would encourage you to NOT DO IT.  Maybe you’ve spent the last few years “having a little fun”, “messing around a little”, or simply doing it without being married or with someone who is not your spouse.  Well my friend, you have been duped.  What you have is not love but passionate lust.  The father of lies (John 8:44) has done a masterful job of changing the description of love.  Abba created love, defined it, and gives it to us.  The prince of the air (Ephesians 2:2) has given you a COUNTER FIT LOVE also known as lust also known as premarital sex also known as messing around also know as having a little fun also known as sexual sin.  Sons and daughters of the most high, my challenge to you is ask yourself if what you are pursuing is God’s love or Counter fit love.  Any relationship that lands you in the back of a car, in your boy/girlfriend’s apartment/house, or only God knows where else, is NOT LOVE.  And I might challenge you to consider if the “Christian boy/girlfriend” who is encouraging to disobey Abba, is really a “Christian”.  Really?  Yes my dear one, really (see 2 Corinthians 11:14).  🙂  It might be hot and steamy passion but it’s NOT LOVE.  It’s time for the Body of Christ and the world to turn from this corporate stronghold of worldly love.  This worldly love is lust and is not of Christ but of the anti-Christ.  This worldly, hot and steamy love of doing it will earn you not the love that God intends but a bigger hole in your heart and possibly eternal separation from our Abba.

Abba, we repent of participating in the counter fit love of the world and we commit ourselves in purity to you.  We ask that you would bind up the lust of our flesh, the lust of our eyes, and the pride of life.  We ask that you would bind up all unclean, seducing spirits and all incubus and succubus spirits attacking us.  And we ask that you loose your Holy Spirit upon us and cleanse us Lord.  Purify us Lord, create within us a new heart that is consecrated to you.  Open the eyes and ears of our hearts Lord to listen to you and accept your truths.  Help us to be obedient and cancel Satan’s entrance into our lives via worldly love, lust, and sexual sin.  We are your sons and daughters Abba and are free from being the sons and daughters of disobedience (Ephesians 2:2).  We thank you for your merciful grace and continuing to perfect us.  Thank you Abba and please cover us in the Blood of the Lamb, Jesus Christ.  – Amen

Related Posts: Beauty ; Daughters
Photo Credit: Unfinishedman.com

Discernment: Heritage and Healing during the Holidays

trailoftearsI don’t know about you but my earthly culture of origin loves its identity.  I’ve always known my heritage from an early age and placed high value on it.  As I’ve grown into adulthood and in my faith I have come to know my heritage as a daughter of Eternal Papa.  I am one of the many daughters adopted into the eternal family of Christ.  My prayer is that we all would vest our heritage in our heavenly eternal family.

I don’t know about you but almost every month I get asked, “Where are you from ?”, “Did you grow up in the states?”, “Where are your parents/grandparents from…originally?”.  I never really identified myself as ethnically ambiguous but I guess in a country of many Nations and with a mixed heritage of many African nations, I guess it might be a bit confusing for someone trying to figure out my heritage.  I suppose I would rather have someone ask my heritage than stare and not ask.  Well earlier this year I was asked one of these questions by an older Somali man.  I gave him my usual “I am from America.”  He persisted in asking the nation of origin of my parents and I persisted with “America”.  He then persisted in asking the nation of origin of my grandparents/great grandparents and I persisted with “America”.  Then he flatly asked “Where in Africa is your family originally from?”  He was certain my family was from or near Somali.  I then shared that my family is from America and we don’t know where in Africa we are from actually.  He like many who have asked me this question persisted that I should find out.

Well minus one story of thousands of Africans non-willfully being brought to the Americas and mixed amongst each other, it’d be pretty hard to pinpoint exactly my true ethnic nation of origin.  There are some rare times when I am curious but that curiosity passes as my joy in my eternal heritage takes over.  Who can beat the eternal and royal heritage of the King of King, Lord of Lords?!  So the following story is about the Heritage of Americans and the Believer.

I agree that some of this country’s original immigrants (i.e. forefathers) were Believers.  Many worked tirelessly to get my forefathers freed from slavery.  But I also know that some of this country’s original immigrants (i.e. forefathers) were not Believers.  One that kills, steals, and destroys in the name of religion does not understand the Faith and is not my forefather.  Forefather is a powerful word that assumes the heritage and inherited “stuff” (good and bad including generational sins) to you.  One observation about this country is the varied views of how it was founded.  There are some of us who believe it was founded by Christians.  There are some of us who believe it was founded by European Explorers (sans the Christian faith).  Ask a Native American about who they believe founded the U.S.A and your answer might be different?  Ask a descendant of the American slaves (African American) about who they believe founded the U.S.A. and your answer might be different?  I think the view of the heritage of America will depend on your heritage and forefathers.  If your forefathers were Native Americans, you would likely claim the founders of this country came thousands of years ago from Asia to the American continent.  If your forefathers were African slaves, you would likely claim the forefathers of this country were also Native Americans who were pushed out by European explorers seeking a new land.

Why might there be so much unresolved racial division in the U.S.A.?  I would propose because we have not healed the wounds and generational sins of the forefathers of the U.S.A.  I am reading an interesting book by John and Mark Sandford on Deliverance and Inner Healing.  They presents some really good insights into strongholds that affect larger groups of people including countries.  Their example is Nazi Germany.  There was a concept of an empire spirit that seeks to take over and conquer other Nations.  It seems one root of it could be greed.  Nonetheless, this empire stronghold and generational sins of the forefathers of one group of Nations against others forefathers of other groups of Nations remain unresolved in the land of the U.S.A.  Great wickedness and bloodshed occurred in this land and often in the name of religion.  Great sins were committed against the original inhabitants of this land and other immigrants brought to this land.  I challenge the belief that this country was founded on the Faith.  Telling falsehoods or just occupying land that is inhabited by others is stealing.  Sending blankets filled with small pox to families of Natives with the intention they would get sick and die so one could inhabit the land is murder.  Purposefully taking women from their people in order to obliterate any future ethnic heritage (also known as white washing – done in both the Americas and Australia) is not pure in motives.  Stealing and taking other Nations of people as livestock to build a new Nation that they were told they could not enjoy because they were not human was not Godly and was not Christian.  Raping the same livestock that was also told was not human is not Godly or Christian, and violates Abba’s principles on sexual morality and love.

Yes my friends, this is part of the heritage and foundation of our nation.  There is much healing that needs to take place for our country.  One of the things you learn in the ministry of healing prayer is that before you petition God you clear things up that are broken.  You repent, you cancel Satan’s authority, ask for healing, and then petition/talk with God.  One profound area I learned is the need for us as Believers is to repent and cancel Satan’s authority over us in generational sins, word curses, and inner vows.  Often as Believers we are bound to things that we cannot explain and much of it has to do with bloodline sins.  Sometimes the sins is in the environment or in the land we inhabit.  The prince of the air has reign of this earth and he has no intention of letting this nation be a nation of Beliver’s heritage.  I think our call as Believers is to go back and heal the land, and heal the wounds of the descendants before us.  The descendant victims of the thievery and slavery in the U.S.A. have corporately not healed from the generational sins committed against their forefathers.

Have you heard someone say “Why are Black people so angry?” or “Why do the Natives drink so much or commit suicide so much?”  I’ve heard these statements and maybe the answer is spiritual (generational sin and unhealed land).  Might we consider that the Native peoples are still grieving spiritually the massive thievery committed against their forefathers and their land and culture. Might we consider the descendants of African slaves including my ancestors (African Americans) are still grieving spiritually the massive sins of abuse and thievery of the identity of their forefathers.  Two Nations of God’s people in the Americas have not healed completely from the sins committed against their forefathers.  There is a spiritual bondage and not letting go of the past.  We need to pray for the healing of the generational sins of our forefathers both the offenders and victims.  You may be like my husbands’ family who did not arrive to this land until the early 1900s and have no knowledge or generational linkage to the forefathers of the Native Americans, African slaves, or European explorers but your prayer to heal the land is still needed.  We need to welcome these Nations of the Native Americans and African slaves into the adopted family of Christ.  Though their earthly identity was stolen and great sins were committed against their forefathers (including my forefathers), help them to know that God is the ultimate healer and he is just.  As one of the descendants of the wounded Nations, I can live freely in knowing that my identity is no longer in the sins committed against or by my forefathers but my identity is in an eternal heritage with God the Father, Jesus Christ, and the Holy Spirit.  Please consider this on our American Holidays (Columbus Day, Thanksgiving).

Lord we ask that you would Bind up the wounds and generational sins of our forefathers and loose healing/freedom to each of us, securing our identity in your eternal family.  Thank you Abba.  – Amen

Related Stories: Does Heritage Matter? ; American History
Photo Credit: USG.edu
Resources: The Harbinger