Laying Hands on Lions

Sitting in our minivan, I waited outside a local thrift shop while my wife perused for hidden treasures. A last-minute date night afforded me some extra time to connect and unwind with my most intimate ally and soul mate, and as I waited for her, I took the opportunity to ask the Lord a few questions.

I simply don’t consistently reflect His love the way I desire to. Why am I so moody? How is it I rest so easily at times in Him and then suddenly choose not to see people the way He does? On top of all this, I had become keenly aware that depending on what the Lord wants to talk with me about during the late watches of the night, my wife oft-times is honored to wake up to someone who might delicately be best described as “not a morning person.”  This too, needs to change.

My thoughts were interrupted as another vehicle parked alongside us. Out came four chaperoned  adults that I could see where broken in mind and heart. A keen sense of depression and rejection permeated the atmosphere around them. Words and feelings began to build within my spirit until I perceived a self-hatred coupled with the deepest sense of wounding I ever felt someone carry around without being suicidal. Burdens, heaviness, and conflicting emotions swirled within me as Father was allowing me to enter into their lives for the briefest of moments.

Trying to sift through “who was who,” I hopped out of the car and opened the door for them to enter the thrift shop. I smiled and asked the “caregiver” if I could help in any way. I was looking for what I would call, some “rules of engagement,” and was making myself a servant for the Holy Spirit to use.

The man thanked me with vacant eyes and a one word reply.  “No.”

Turning toward one in particular, a middle-aged woman, I tried to hone in on anything the Lord wanted to talk with me about. But I just couldn’t dial in. The pain was too great, and I felt overwhelmed. What was worse is that I knew I could not connect with them even if I did indeed gain some sort of conversational inroad. They were all too emotionally guarded.  I was locked out of being able to reach their hearts. Helplessness and uselessness began to creep over me, and as the reality of all their pain intensified, so did my sense of despair. The love, compassion and pain for them continued to build, as was that all too-familiar anger that rises like a storm within me.

And my date-night was just getting started.

That’s just great…

So I called “game-over.”  I wanted off that playground. I decided I would pick up my ball and play church with the Lord inside the safety of my own vehicle. I knew I would need a few solid minutes to re-adjust to the facade of this realm in order to be somewhat amiable again, and I turned away from the group.

Fumbling slowly for my sunglasses, hot tears already streaming, I prepared to fix my eyes on Jesus and enter His rest. I began my apology.

“Not today, Dad. Sorry. There are too many of them and I cannot reach them all. I am so sorry. There are just too many… I’m so sorry…”

But sometimes the Lord wants to finish what He starts, doesn’t He?

“Raise up fishers of men, David.”

The Lord was referring to the caregiver. The one who was so broken himself that I had guessed if I was actually addressing the person in charge. How that man was even given custody over these other people was beyond me. He was so crushed himself that societally, he was barely able to function.

“I will tell you about him.” The Lord said.

And so, exiting my car once again, sunglasses still on, ( a trick I began implementing this past year as it hides the tears until the last moment ) I headed inside to find him. As I searched, the Holy Spirit shared with me a portion of this man’s story.

Father-God gifted him with a very tender heart. He had so much love to give. His soul was soft to all that was around him. I had never felt such a person before. Pure, innocent and full of wonder was the fingerprint of his soul. The heart of a lion and a king. He was a unique and blessed child.

But…

My whole inner being began to writhe and twist as the Lord pulled back the veil a bit more.

From a very young age the boy suffered terrible scorn and ridicule. The kind that deforms one’s entire being from the inside out. His parents were unable to guard his heart and in many instances, were themselves the source of the pain and wounding. Because of the degree of his tenderheartedness he simply was not capable of developing very good external defense mechanisms. He turned inward. With no safe place to hide, he grew up from his earliest days, a small, fragile little boy who slowly began to hate himself. His mind began to darken and his soul began to fracture.  A most exquisite stained glass window… now shattered.

Trapped, and with no answers, that boy made a vow to God. If he ever survived his own hell, he would help others to never suffer the torture his heart was enduring.  He would guard the others… to the death.

A true shepherd.

I passed Maija, who was kneeling over something of interest, and as I did, our eyes locked. Everything unspoken was communicated.  Smiling up at me, she silently encouraged me to hang in there. She knew I was about Dad’s business and went back to her own task at hand.

“Raise up Fishers of men, David.”  He repeated.

Abruptly, turning an aisle corner, I now saw that little boy. That sweet, gentle, soft, and tortured child slowly shuffling away. His feet barely lifted off the ground with an outward gate that reflected his inward malady. A broad, mountain of a man, he stood head and shoulders above me.

“Sir,” I choked out, and introduced myself.

“This might sound strange, but when I saw you a moment ago, I just felt the Lord speaking to my heart about you. It may sound a bit odd but your Heavenly Father wants you to know He sees how much love you have for others…”   Pausing, I attempted to navigate the raging currents within me.

I called upon the Holy Spirit to sustain me; to keep that river of Father’s heart from drowning me. All I could see was that boy. I also understood I had to be careful and gentle. Deep down, underneath, I could feel the tremors of some other hidden, volatile pains within him churning.

I very quietly and very slowly, spoke. I conveyed how Father-God saw the pain he went through growing up and yet how he still chose to love, serve and protect others.  

“We can only give to others to the amount we have inside ourselves. You have so much love to give these people you are taking care of. Would you be offended if I prayed for you?”

Ever so gently, as if placing my hand on a lion’s mane, I touched his shoulder.

And… I very quietly…  gave all I had.

I held nothing back within my heart. My voice quivered and my words cracked. I didn’t care. I prayed for the Lord to fill this man with a revelation of how much he was loved. I thanked God for this man, and for him to come to know Jesus as His Savior and Friend. I allowed Father’s love to just flow through me and rest upon his heart and mind. I agreed with Heaven that this man would pass along a deep love of God to those he met.  It was a tender, soft prayer. I could only give to the extent I myself was capable, and to that limit… I gave all.  I finished my prayer and looked up.

Tearfully, he attempted to say something, but all he could manage was the faintest of whispers as he nodded and wept. A flicker appeared in his eyes… just a tiny flicker.

We stared at each other in silence. A lifetime of pain was, for the moment,  in reprieve. More than that, an initial balm had been applied. The kingdom had torn through.  

A beginning… This man would one day roar the sound of The Redeemed.

I went to give him a soft hug and the Lord thundered in my spirit to refrain.  I meekly offered up a handshake instead.

“He sees you…. He wants you to know He sees you and loves you… so much.  Thank you. I am honored to have met you. So honored…”

The man said nothing. He simply nodded and tried to blink his vision back into focus. Staring intently at him, I wiped my eyes. Then I placed my glasses back on, turned and walked out.

“Bring the kingdom.” The Lord instructed me some years ago.  I am nothing special. Truly. I can be moody, contentious with God, and certainly not always a morning person.  But, I do have a will. I do have choices. I get to choose each moment of my life if I will seek to get to know my Dad. We can only release the kingdom to the degree we are willing to seek and possess it within our own walk. This is why Jesus died for us.

“I pray also for those who will believe in me through their message, that all of them may be one, Father, just as you are in me and I am in you.

May they also be in us so that the world may believe that you have sent me.” John 17:20-21

This has nothing at all to do with works in order to feed a false, worldly-minded sense of identity. This certainly is not about striving to gain some false, self-righteous sense of holiness that flies in the face of the cross that made us holy by the blood of Jesus and that shed blood alone. It is time to put away childish things. We are already fully pleasing by what Jesus Christ did… not us.

The Word says we entered into Jesus’ death with Him… so we may also live the life He lived here on Earth. Jesus came to show us the Father. If we would find out what that truly looks like, then to that degree of revelation we also will show the will of the Father to those around us. This is called “outflow.”

“We were therefore buried with him through baptism into death in order that, just as Christ was raised from the dead through the glory of the Father, we too may live a new life.” Rom 6:4

This was a humble encounter where Father used an imperfect, turbulent and often immature son, to share the Living Gospel.  

Nothing more really…

… and certainly nothing less.

 

33 thoughts on “Laying Hands on Lions

    • Jen,

      If the Lord is able to use me, as unbroken as I am at times, imagine how much of the kingdom is yet to be released thru all of His bride as we, in one accord, continue to seek His heart in all things.

      🙂

      Like

  1. Brother David:
    Thank you for live out the truth, as wrote by apostle Paul in book Galatians 2:20. Thank you for being a living testimony for Christ! Thank you again for sharing your life story with us in your blog. It is encouraging and helpful!
    Joanna

    Liked by 1 person

    • Sister Joanna,

      I am so honored to say I am able to serve you and your husband in any capacity. Thank you for your willingness to be tortured for the sake of the gospel. I am praying for you and your husband and your travels back and forth to China.

      Please reach out anytime for prayer or in any way we can help you or our brothers and sisters abroad who are dying for the sake of sharing His love.

      Thank you… it is my honor.

      David

      Like

  2. Tears… tears.. as i read… be blessed brother David… I too use the sunglasses… way too often :)… please pray for me I want what you have… “our eyes locked. Everything unspoken was communicated. Smiling up at me, she silently encouraged me to hang in there. She knew I was about Dad’s business and went back to her own task at hand. ” Father give me this connection with MY wife which can only come from you.

    Love you David… press on and IN!

    Liked by 1 person

    • David

      I truly know little about doing things the right way.. but have noticed as He continues to break my heart with the love of His own revealed, every relationship is blessed as a result.
      My Wife truly is much better at loving.. which makes it easier for me to attempt to yield.

      God bless you David!

      Like

    • Oh Anna.. not at all the way I am certain Father desires to move through my heart!!

      But I am also certain He see my desire for ALL of us to release the great love that had been shed abroad in the heart of the child of God.
      If it comes to your mind, and you are led, pray I get a greater revelation of His love toward His children… I need more of Him.

      “Normal christianity” is not normal enough in my life… but he is not done will any of us yet, right? 😉

      I pray as I express my frailty and shortcomings.. others may not be so afraid to just give Him. it is so simple once we let go… why do I resist so very often?

      My greatest fear is that those who stop by would miss the cry of one small member in the body, which is to point to HIM in us.. HIM only. I am so far from anything special in the body.. other than the uniqueness of each and every one of His children,.. but those tender moments in which He uses His children.. my goodness.. are for ALL of us to walk in.. I am such a poor example, but hope that if others may see, read, study that we arte COMPLETE in Christ FULLY LOVED already… that NOTHING we can do makes us more or less special… we just release that love.

      At times I shy away from sharing, but that too is dark thinking as it underscores the lie that our worth is tied to our actions… or what others may wrongly perceive.
      Thank you for your encouragement. Its all ABOUT Him and His love He so longs to reveal experientially to us and those we may touch… I have so far to go.

      Father bless you Anna!

      David

      Liked by 1 person

  3. Truly powerful David ! I felt that .. Could see it like a movie .. I see my first born in some of that .. Perhaps you could pray for him also .. Blessings dear David !!

    Liked by 1 person

  4. I can only imagine the great big beaming proud smile on our Abba’s face as He looked on…and the swelling love in His magnificent heart as you co-laboured to bring love and encouragement to one of His lost sheep…God bless you precious son of the Most High King.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Imagine if I actually stepped out more? Thanks Nicky- I can close my eyes and feel our Dad’s love for this man every moment since… These types of encounters “brand” my soul.. and so I need the courage to not mind the love/pain so much… He is faithful though 🙂

      Thanks for sharing and the encouragement.

      Like

      • Ha ha…yes indeed, imagine. Imagine if we all stepped out more… And yet, I’m wondering what it would be like if we all ‘stepped in’ more…if we stepped in to that secret place of love and adoration for our Father…if we communed with Him and soaked in Him and grew to love and hunger for Him more than the air we breathe…to see the fire in His eyes and feel the furious love in His heart…oh imagine how we and our world would be transformed…it’s coming David…it’s coming. Step in…step in…step in. As Jesus lived and breathed love and communion with the Father and Holy Spirit so can and shall we…He said what He heard the Father say and He did what He saw the Father do…why?…because He took time to ‘step in’ to that sweet sweet secret place of encounter with the Father…that’s your destiny David…that’s my destiny…that is the destiny of the Body of Believers…His Beloved Bride…bring it on I say! God bless, Nicky 🙂

        Liked by 1 person

  5. Amen, Nicky. These are the invitations that transform us from the inside out… all we need do is have the courage to not care what others’ think…

    And just love them from Father’s heart.

    Thank you for shairng

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    • Yes, love them from the Father’s heart. When we are so soaked and marinated in the Father’s love, perhaps ‘having courage’ will not really be necessary?…or not something we need to be conscious of?…when Perfect Love has cast out all fear…when fear has no place to land in our hearts and minds…when we are so intoxicated by Him…when we trust without doubt that we are perfectly loved with a perfect love…perhaps His love is the most powerful and profound ‘Shield’ we will ever need or desire? Ha ha, He is our Shield, He is our Reward, our Very Great Reward…He is our happy place!! Isn’t He such a good good Father! 😀

      Liked by 1 person

  6. One of the things that I got out of your responses above, which I thought was intriguing is that you still can pull up in your heart what you were feeling when you first interacted with the gentleman. Most people who give a word of knowledge sometimes cannot recall what they said. Can you elaborate on that a little?

    Liked by 1 person

    • Great question.

      In order for us to really understand this we need establish a baseline.

      First- We are spirit beings who posses a soul.
      Second- We are not our soul. We are a spirit-man.

      So, when our spirit is getting insight through the Holy Spirit within us (our spirit-man) it gets passed along to our mind (soul). The more we sit and practice time in His presence the more our soul perceives and picks up on the things the HS is speaking to us (spirit-man) about.

      So… here is one reason why we “forget.” To the degree our soul is not actively yielded to our spirit-man (remember it is our spirit-man that is “born-again) we will not be as dialed in to the Holy Spirit and the things of the kingdom.

      There have been times I have shared a “word” and then a month later had NO recollection of the event. This is because I was yielded enough to pick up on what the Lord wanted to share, but not centered enough in my soul to really be dialed in to what was on His heart.

      Knowing and feeling His heart creates what I call “fingerprints” on our soul… and they don’t easily come off.

      As we continue to practice walking by the spirit (not as a cliche but as a true walk of life) where our soul is yielded to our born-again nature, we will be able to recall things because we are drawing upon our spirit that is in constant contact with the HS.

      The more we actively commune with Him the more we can see what He sees, Feel what He is feeling and know the mind of Christ.

      I hope this made some sense 🙂

      God bless, Sister

      David

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