You laugh at empty tombs

September 30, 2010

Isaiah 43:25-26 (New King James Version)
I, even I, am He who blots out your transgressions for My own sake;
And I will not remember your sins.
Put Me in remembrance;
Let us contend together;
State your case, that you may be acquitted.

O Lord God Almighty,
You rolled away the stone from Your Son Jesus’s tomb and laughed. You make a way.
Roll away the stones that block the healing of neurologic disease, especially autism spectrum disorders and Friedreich’s ataxia, and laugh. We are contending with You, Lord. We remember that You are the Lord of life. We remember to choose life.
We choose the Blood of Jesus and we laugh!
By His Blood our transgressions and the transgressions of our ancestors are blotted out. By His Blood our sins are forgotten. By His Blood we laugh. We are laughing, Lord, for You are the Way. Amen.

Hosea 6:1-6

September 30, 2010

Come, and let us return to the LORD; for he has torn, but he will heal us; (Hosea 6:1a)
      LORD, we, your people in the Episcopal Church, are torn with dissension; help us return to you, guide our steps back to you.

he has stricken, but he will bind us up. (Hosea 6:1b)
      Jesus, bind up the wounds in your body the church. Help us recognize that we are stricken.

After two days he will revive us; on the third day he will raise us up, that we may live in his sight. (Hosea 6:2)
      Jesus, let the power of your resurrection be manifested in our lives.

Let us know, let us pursue the knowledge of the LORD. His going forth is established as the morning; he will come to us like the rain, like the latter and former rain to the earth. (Hosea 6:3)
      Holy Spirit, rain on us; let your living water flow through us to others around us.

“O Ephraim, what shall I do to you? O Judah, what shall I do to you? For your faithfulness is like a morning cloud, and like the early dew it goes away.” (Hosea 6:4)
      Father, restore in us steadiness in you.

“Therefore I have hewn them by the prophets, I have slain them by the words of my mouth; and your judgments are like light that goes forth.” (Hosea 6:5)
      Father, your people hear your word and do nothing; help us repent and return to you. Let your words cut us to the heart.

“For I desire mercy and not sacrifice, and the knowledge of God more than burnt offerings.” (Hosea 6:6)
      Holy Spirit, guide us and teach us. Restore mercy and the knowledge of God to your church and your people.

      Father, you love us so much; help us respond to your love for us.

      A word received: Come to me. Don’t hold back. Come to me with all your griefs and pains and sins. Come to me.

Thursday: 105:1-22; * 105:23-45; Hosea 5:8-6:6; Acts 21:27-36; Luke 6:1-11
Friday: 102; * 107:1-32; Hosea 10:1-15; Acts 21:37-22:16; Luke 6:12-26

Albany Intercessor

Friedreich’s ataxia et al

September 29, 2010

Friedreich’s ataxia is unique in that an ancestral point of origin has been uncovered by geneologists. Many cases of Friedreich’s ataxia can be traced to one common ancestral couple arriving in New France in 1634: Jean Guyon and Mathurine Robin. Quebec was established at the site of a long abandoned St. Lawrence Iroquoian settlement.
Guyon was a stone mason, but I’ve uncovered no connection to Freemasonry. He came to Quebec as an indentured servant but violated his contract. The land had previously been surrendered to the English in the Anglo-French War, but was returned to the French before Guyon’s arrival. Guyon’s heirs disputed over the land after his death.
The story of their lives is marked by contention over land.

In 1578, the English explorer Martin Frobisher celebrated the first Thanksgiving in Canada in gratitude for his safe return from an expedition. I’ve seen no documentation that this tradition was continued in New France.
Samuel Champlain, the Father of New France, established a series of banquets and plays called the Order of Good Cheer to get the settlers through the harsh winters. As best as I can tell, these celebrations were secular, rather than religious; some accounts refer to strippers. From a brief Internet search, it is hard to know what is legend.

We give You thanks for the beauty and bounty of the land in French Canada. In You we live and move and have our being. Through Your providence, the original settlers of New France existed. Through Your providence, the settlement survived. We pray for a spirit of gratitude to wash over that region, gratitude for all of Your good gifts. May a spirit of gratitude infill the descendants of Jean Guyon and Mathurine Robin.
Anoint the patients with Friedreich’s ataxia, especially Sally, with a spirit of thanksgiving. Fill her with Your Holy Spirit. Let song flow out of her heart. May new songs break old cycles. Fill her life with praise. Let the notes of praise surround each and every chromosome and mitochondrion. May every gene and every biochemical pathway in her body magnify Your Holy Name. May she give thanks always for all things unto God and the Father in the name of our Lord Jesus Christ. Fill her life with new songs, Lord. New songs.
We don’t know the ancestral points of origin for other neurologic diseases. Yet, we work with the lessons learned from Friedreich’s ataxia for them. Fill them with Your Holy Spirit, especially Lauren, Chris, and Joseph. Let song flow out of their hearts. May new songs break old cycles. Fill their lives with praise. Let the notes of praise surround each and every chromosome and diseased cell. May every gene and every biochemical pathway in their bodies magnify Your Holy Name. May they give thanks always for all things unto God and the Father in the name of our Lord Jesus Christ. Fill their lives with new songs, Lord. New songs.

Ephesians 5:18-20

Luke 5:36-39

September 29, 2010

Then He spoke a parable to them: “No one puts a piece from a new garment on an old one; otherwise the new makes a tear, and also the piece that was taken out of the new does not match the old. And no one puts new wine into old wineskins; or else the new wine will burst the wineskins and be spilled, and the wineskins will be ruined. But new wine must be put into new wineskins, and both are preserved. And no one, having drunk old wine, immediately desires new; for he says, ‘The old is better.'” (Luke 5:36-39)
      Jesus, we keep trying to put patches and Band-Aids on the tears and wounds of your body. Help us drink the new wine of your Holy Spirit and put on new clean garments of praise and worship. Father, help us come into your presence, washed and cleansed by the blood of your son Jesus. Clothe us with your righteousness. Thank you.

      A word received: Hope! Pray for my people to hope in me. I want them to place their hope in me. I AM the only secure foundation; I AM the rock to stand on.

Wednesday: 101, 109:1-4(5-19)20-30; * 119:121-144; Hosea 4:11-19; Acts 21:15-26; Luke 5:27-39
Thursday: 105:1-22; * 105:23-45; Hosea 5:8-6:6; Acts 21:27-36; Luke 6:1-11

      Notes from the Front Line

***** Below is the list of upcoming Sunday 4pm Healing Services at the Spiritual Life Center.

Oct. 3rd.
Oct. 17th

Nov. 7th
Nov. 28th

Dec. 12th
(only one service this month, due to Christmas Holiday)

***** Date: Wed, 29 Sep 2010
From: Noel Dawes
Subject: WHI ­ West – Day 2 – Tue, Sep 28th
Welcome Home Initiative (WHI) Retreat West – Day 2 — Tuesday, September 28th
      To Our Faithful Welcome Home Initiative Intercessors!
      Today has been another excellent day. Long but very good. Again, your prayers have been very efficacious and we have seen the answer to many of them in the way the day has gone and the healing we have seen. It is certainly true that whenever we pray the Lord always does something!
      After a core team prayer and debriefing meeting followed by a lovely continental breakfast our morning session ran from 9 AM to noon. We had a group discussion on the clinical effects of trauma and then suggested a rationale for spiritual healing in Christ. The trauma discussion, led by our ‘on site’ trauma nurse, was serious and passionate as retreatants spoke from personal experience. Most participants on this retreat are involved in giving leadership to a variety of ministries dealing with Wounded Warriors, Traumatic Brain Injury (TBI) or in other ethical and moral circumstances. As the morning wore on a prophetic insight received overnight became evident — that these participants seemed not to be seeking to take care of themselves. So many caregivers first care for others and, as a senior Army Chaplain said two weeks ago, they neglect their personal responsibility to care for themselves. Some discussion took place about this duty and we were all encouraged to allow the Lord to work in us at the personal level on this retreat.
      After another more than adequate lunch of subs and potato salad, we were back in the ministry room listening to a short encouraging talk about the need to debrief and tell our story. Healing often starts with this. A retired USAF Chaplain modeled how to do this for us. He had been the senior of two Chaplains present when the Khobar Towers (Saudi Arabia) truck bomb exploded without warning quite late at night on 25 June 1996. Having had a miraculous escape from being shredded alive by flying glass, he and his fellow Chaplain spent the next many hours at the point of greatest need. Firstly this was at the medical triage facility, where over 250 casualties were dealt with. Then it became the site of the explosion as recovery teams searched for the wounded and dead. Later it was the mortuary where, amongst other tasks, they had comforted those responsible for identifying the mutilated bodies of the 19 US servicemen killed by the bomb. Adrenalin kept the two Chaplains going until they started thinking of the spouses, children and families of those killed. The Lord had healed the Chaplain on our retreat from cancer about a year later, after surgery, and he felt his auto-immune system had been depleted by the lack of sleep and other stress in the few days following the bomb explosion. In spite of this strain he had felt a very tangible and incredible peace from the Lord in the days after the bombing. He was convinced that the Lord would work things out for His glory. Later he had survivors guilt which the Lord healed. Since the bomb he has never taken the gift of life for granted. His faith helped him to be resilient even though he felt exhausted and prayed much for strength. He exhorted us to build our lives on a strong base now, so our spiritual and personal foundations are strong and we can better weather the storms of life. He has found that telling his story has been redemptively good in his and many others lives.
      We split into 4 small work groups in different parts of the church and encouraged the telling of stories. We invited Jesus to heal memories. Hands were laid on several retreatants and others were anointed with oil. We are not able to share much detail about this most intimate part of the retreat in order to respect and maintain confidentiality, but suffice to say that many found significant release from their trauma this afternoon. It was SO GOOD to see the healing taking place in front of one’s eyes. But please continue to pray for the wholeness in Christ of two participants who didn’t feel able to share or ask for personal prayer. Even so, this ministry is often like the peeling off of the layers of an onion. Everyone has allowed God the Christ to peel off at least one layer of the onion of their life.
      After dinner, we deliberately lightened the atmosphere and St. George’s Vicar (responsible for pastoral care, preaching and liturgy) hosted Comedy Central for us. We laughed hilariously at videos of several comedians and then split into teams to play Reverse Jeopardy. In this the answers are given and teams have to guess the questions! It was huge fun and achieved the aim of encouraging healing through laughter.
      As the retreatants wended their way home at the end of the evening, beautiful quilts, from Quilts of Valor ( were handed to the combat Veterans. They have taken them home to consider the blessing of an unconditional gift of grace. The quilts are made by ladies all across the USA. Their hearts are simply filled with love for Veterans they will probably never meet — and all to say, “Thank you for your service!” We saw healing this evening as Veterans reacted to their gift.
      Tomorrow is our last day. Please pray with renewed vigor again — and again!
      After breakfast we plan to have a time of healing prayer where everyone will be offered the laying on of hands, anointing with oil, an opportunity to seek and express forgiveness, and Absolution. As appropriate we hope to anoint ‘trigger’ fingers, or other parts of the hands which might have carried out legitimate (sometimes illegitimate) acts of horror against an enemy and which the Soldier now wants to be cleansed from.
      The Retreat ends with a closing service of praise and thanksgiving starting at 11:30 Central. It will embody a message of hope for the future from an active duty Army Chaplain who has seen more than his fair share of combat deployments in recent years. Finally, over lunch, the guests at the closing service will have the opportunity to stay on and thank our Veterans for their service and say, “Welcome Home!”

Albany Intercessor


September 29, 2010

We received a report that one of the neurologic patients we’ve been praying for, an autistic, has been having some very good days.

Psalm 37:4-5 (New International Version)
Delight yourself in the LORD and he will give you the desires of your heart. Commit your way to the LORD; trust in him and he will do this.

We give You thanks, dear Lord, for Your tender mercies. Amen.

El Elyon

September 28, 2010

Daniel 4 relates the story of King Nebuchadnezzar’s prophetic dream of his insanity and how it came about. For seven years he lived outside and ate grass as oxen.

Daniel 4:34-35 (New International Version)
At the end of that time, I, Nebuchadnezzar, raised my eyes toward heaven, and my sanity was restored. Then I praised the Most High; I honored and glorified him who lives forever. His dominion is an eternal dominion; his kingdom endures from generation to generation. All the peoples of the earth are regarded as nothing. He does as he pleases with the powers of heaven and the peoples of the earth. No one can hold back his hand or say to him: “What have you done?”

The name for God he uses is El Elyon, God Most High. This same name was first revealed to Abraham after he and his 318 men defeated four kings and armies. Afterward Melchizedek king of Salem and priest of God Most High (El Elyon) said

Genesis 14:19b-20a
“Blessed be Abram by God Most High, Creator of heaven and earth. And blessed be God Most High, who delivered your enemies into your hand.”

El Elyon, God Most High,
You are sovereign. We give You thanks for all things in the name of our Lord Jesus Christ.
You rule supremely over all. All things work together for good to those who love God, to those who are called according to His purpose.
Joseph honored You in Potiphar’s house, in prison, and in Pharoah’s court, and You made Your face to shine upon him. We give thanks in all circumstances, for this is God’s will for us in Christ Jesus.
No person or spirit, no circumstances of life, can thwart Your plan. You can take what was meant for evil and turn it for good. All the earth shall be filled with the glory of the Lord!
At the name of El Elyon, Amraphel king of Shinar, Arioch king of Ellasar, Chedorlaomer king of Elam, Tidal “king of nations,” and Nebuchadnezzar king of Babylon must submit. El Elyon is God Most High!
The world was called into being by Your word. Your spoken breath framed the world. We trust in You. By Your kindness we are not moved. We are not moved by Your enemies. We are not moved by the spirits that moved Amraphel, Arioch, Chedorlaomer, Tidal, and Nebuchadnezzar.
We lift up those who suffer from neurological and psychiatric disease, especially Joseph, Chris, Lauren, and Sally. Make Your face to shine upon them. Embed them in Your kindness. Lay hold of all their enemies; your right hand will seize their foes. Keep them from being moved. Keep them from being moved by the spirits represented in Amraphel, Arioch, Chedorlaomer, Tidal, and Nebuchadnezzar. Amen.
Numbers 14:21, Ephesians 5:18,20, Romans 8:28, 1 Thessalonians 5:18, Genesis 45:5-8, Hebrews 11:3, Psalm 21:7-8

Inspiration for this prayer came from The Peace and Power of Knowing God’s Name by Kay Arthur.

Luke 5:16

September 28, 2010

So He Himself often withdrew into the wilderness and prayed. (Luke 5:16)
      Jesus, help each of us often find a quiet place where we can pray.

[An art school project where I had to copy a famous drawing.]

Tuesday: 97, 99, [100]; * 94, [95]; Hosea 4:1-10; Acts 21:1-14; Luke 5:12-26
Wednesday: 101, 109:1-4(5-19)20-30; * 119:121-144; Hosea 4:11-19; Acts 21:15-26; Luke 5:27-39

      Notes from the Front Line

***** Date: Tue, 28 Sep 2010
From: Noel Dawes
Subject:WHI ­ West – Day 1 – Mon, Sep 27th
      Welcome Home Initiative (WHI) Retreat West Day 1 – Monday, September 27th
      To Our Faithful Welcome Home Initiative Intercessors!
      Thank you so much for praying through the day with us today! We have truly felt the power of your prayers.
      The day has gone very well and, as always, it was completely different in dynamics, tone and nature to any of the other 7 Retreats previously done at the Spiritual Life Center.
      After a team meeting at 10:30 AM, followed by lunch, the 10 retreatants arrived and registered by mid-afternoon. The facilitators, trauma counselor and triage nurse were already there and we noticed the really good interaction amongst us all right from the start. We hope to be joined by another spouse tomorrow as well as another Veteran on Wednesday, making a total of 22 participants altogether, including 7 Veterans (4 Army, 3 USAF). Our Veterans have served in combat in Vietnam, Operation Desert Storm (Gulf War), Operation Northern Watch, Grenada, the bombing at Khobar Towers, Northern Ireland, Iraq, Afghanistan. Two active duty Chaplains are taking part.
      Bishop Dave Bena introduced the Retreat and asked our host, Canon Mike Williams, to cover necessary housekeeping points. Mike is a WHI ‘alumni’ and a former USAF Chaplain with operational experience. We were led in worship by Bishop Derek Jones, another WHI ‘alumni’ (who has the gift of being able to lead us in the right song with the most appropriate of words for the moment). We introduced ourselves briefly to each other and considered the question, “What do you hope the Lord will do for you during this retreat?” Some want to find healing, others want to learn and be equipped to serve others with similar trauma wounds better. A couple of folk weren’t really sure why they came. Please pray that the Lord will meet the desires of the hearts of all present and make His purposes clear to those who are unsure.
      Bishop Dave led a discussion about the experiential aspects of trauma and asked in what ways did we react to what he had said. Most of us identified with Dave’s experiences in one or more ways, for example, the inappropriate and often sudden sense of rage or the wrong diagnosis of a trauma leading to the wrong medications. The need to forgive was mentioned more than once as a key aspect of healing. Another person said how healing comes day by day, hour by hour and minute by minute as we open our lives up to Jesus (actually sudden and substantial healing has also been our experience too). Someone said that PTSD can never be cured. Later, another said that the trauma that caused the PTSD will always be there and cannot be hidden but that our experience shows that the affect, PTSD or lesser depths of trauma, can be healed by Christ the Healer. Debriefing or talking about traumatic situations was highlighted several times as being essential and someone else found writing poetry to be healing.
      We thanked the team of 5 very warm hearted ladies who are preparing the meals and had an excellent meal of barbecued beef and potato salad followed by key lime pie and ice cream. We assembled back in the discussion room and considered the question of what works in finding healing for trauma. A lively discussion ensued which raised the question of how faith helps us to be resilient and deal with trauma in better ways. It seems that trauma is often a reaction to a situation which has assaulted one’s core value system and that seemed to carry significance for several of us. After considering different ways some of us deal spiritually with danger, we concluded the evening with prayer at about 8 PM.
      Talking of prayer, we must mention again the overriding power of intercession and our encouragement to each of you to pray persistently and with even greater fervor. As we do so, we are exceedingly grateful to the small (3 or 4) ‘on site’ who prayed us through today.
      There is a team meeting at 7:30 AM and, after continental breakfast our program starts at 9 AM. Many participants find the second day to be an emotional one, especially in the afternoon. Please pray for openness to the Holy Spirit’s desire to see each of us made whole in Christ.

Albany Intercessor

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