Category Archives: Christ

What to Pray for in God’s Will

Key to Successful Prayer

What is the key to successful prayer? You must understand that when you pray and believe, then your prayer and belief must be scriptural (2 Peter 1:20,21). Ask and believe and receive what God has clearly promised in his word!  Those who have faith can have whatever they ask for without doubting, when it is in agreement with God’s will and plan for them.

What is God’s will? To discover God’s will in prayer, accept his revealed will through scripture! Where God has made his will clear through His Word, you can accept it. Where he has not made his will clear, then pray like Christ: “Not my will but thine be done.”

Nine things you can pray for that are scripturally in God’s will:

1) Pray to receive the Holy Spirit (Luke 11:13)
2) Pray for believers to spread the Gospel (Luke 10:2)
3) Pray for other believers (Luke 22:32, John 17:20)
4) Pray for church officials (Acts 12:5)
5) Pray for those in authority (1 Timothy 2:2)
6) Pray for forgiveness of others (Matthew 5:44)
7) Pray that you will be judged worthy (Luke 21:36)
8 ) Pray for unity of all believers (John 17:21)
9) Pray for sick to be healed (James 5:16, Mark 16:15-18)

These are a few of the scriptural messages that are clearly in God’s will. There are many others. God promised you power to move mountains (Mark 11:23-25), but you must be sure to move the ones he wants moved. You will know what he wants moved if scriptural or if God’s words abide in you (John 15:7). God doesn’t give demonstrations just for our special entertainment!

1 John 5:14,15 This is the confidence we have in approaching God: that if we ask anything according to his will, he hears us. And if we know that he hears us-whatever we ask-we know that we have what we asked of him.

Vision of The Holy Spirit?

The Anointing

 

Now it is God who makes both us and you stand firm in Christ. He anointed us, set his seal of ownership on us, and put his Spirit in our hearts as a deposit, guaranteeing what is to come. 

2 Cor 1:21-22 (NIV) 

 

It was early Sunday, May 18, 1997.  It was shortly after midnight when I finished my goodnight prayer.   Later  today would be our church=s day which we celebrate as Pentecost Sunday.   

I was praying for the healing service and for several people on my prayer list.  I had started down our church=s prayer covenant which covers the objectives of the church, the pastors, other leaders and their families.   It was a prayer covenant that we had developed for the church.  A member in our healing group had suggested that we needed one to combat spiritual warfare.  He was concerned that our rapid growth would draw the attention of Satan and we would begin to be harassed by him.  The vision started with Jesus.

 

Jesus had been standing there, but now He reached forward with both hands with his arms outstretched and with palms down but with the fingers tipped upward so that I could see his palms.  There were two people kneeling before him with their backs to me.

 

He placed his hands on the two heads.  I could only see their heads from the back and slightly from their right side.  His fingers were together as he rested them on the heads, but cupped slightly over the heads.

 

I then began to see several other people, one at a time, but only from just below the mouth downward, and only as low as the lower part of the neck.   I don’t know who they were or why I only saw part of them, but I have the remembrance of more detail and also of flesh tones so this portion was in color. 

 

One was a woman, who appeared to be older, and another I decided was a man.  I decided these were people that were being healed.   The vision ended after several people came forward for healing.

 

I took this vision as a very positive sign.   Now we were going into a healing service with the very power of Jesus blessing us! 


Tongues from the Holy Spirit 

The vision was very short and I began to pray again.  Suddenly, I began to pray out loud and I no longer knew what I was saying!  It started as only a new syllable and then a word, and a few seconds later there was a stream of words that were in an unknown language!

 

As I continued to pray, I noticed a slightly blue silhouette of a figure clearly outlined in front of me, facing the same way that I was.  This figure was like a representation you see in a medical encyclopedia – a depiction of the nervous system.  No clothes, no hair, no apparent skin, but a man anyway outlined by ribbons of blue fire along the lines of the nervous system.

 

He was on his knees with arms stretched up to the Heavens, as if pleading to God.   Could the Holy Spirit in me be the very wiring of my nervous system?   A vast array of electrical networks that fire up my body?  I suspect that it was not; this was simply how the Holy Spirit chose to show Himself to me.

 

I don=t know any more about this figure, as I never saw Him again, but my guess was that I was speaking in tongues with the help of the Holy Spirit.   I never spoke in tounges again, and I’ve never seen the Holy Spirit represented to me again.

 

As I prepare this text for this Extraordianary Visions article, I’ve decided to begin a small series on the Holy Spirit as depicted in God’s word, the  Bible.   Maybe we can find out a little more about Him.  As the third person of God, He deserves more respect than most of us have given to date.

 

Oldtimer

 

Biblical Visions

Biblical Visions

After the remarkable vision of the Moving Hills, I began to read more about visions in the Bible. There are far too many visions in our Bible to discuss here, since this book is about visions by ordinary people. Those in the Bible are clearly seen and reported by extraordinary people.

Yet, as I moved forward in my visual experiences with God, I began to see some relationships to what I was seeing that helped explain what the ancients saw, and to comment on some of these may help the reader to understand what I saw as well.

. . . he said, “Listen to my words: “When a prophet of the LORD is among you, I reveal myself to him in visions, I speak to him in dreams.  Num 12:6 (NIV)

Now don’t take me wrong – I am not a prophet in any way, shape, or form.   The purpose of the verse above is to show you how God spoke to the prophets of biblical times.  I do not claim any such abilities or special connection with God.  I am that ordinary person in the title of this piece.

When He shows us things beyond our comprehension, all we can do is describe them in the context of our present knowledge and culture.  To understand what we are seeing today, it may be helpful to look at what the prophets of the Bible have seen and try to draw some comparisons.  

Describing the Indescribable.

God very likely showed visions, such as future events, and heaven (paradise) to the prophets of Biblical times in the same way that He shows them to us today. Like the Moving Hills vision, many of the ancient visions were shrouded in symbolic images. When the visions showed events far into the future, the prophets had a very difficult task telling what they had seen in words that others could understand.

Much like Ezekiel, if we were shown things thousands of years in the future, we would tend to try to describe those things that we did not understand in terms of things we did understand. We would put them in our own terms within the context of our present culture and knowledge.  We would try to describe the indescribable.

Let’s try a test. Look at the passages below as I comment on them and see if you can visualize the cherubim of Ezekiel 10 as an attempt to describe modern helicopters by a man that lived more than 2500 years ago. Consider the following passages.

The rotors of helicopters are moving wings, and if you have ever been near one landing or taking off, you know that they can be very loud.

The sound of the wings of the cherubim could be heard as far away as the outer court, like the voice of God Almighty when he speaks. Ezek. 10:5 (NIV)

The blades of very large helicopters intersect, much like a wheel intersecting a wheel.

As for their appearance, the four of them looked alike; each was like a wheel intersecting a wheel. Ezek. 10:10 (NIV)

A helicopter can move in any direction without turning.  Also, the twin window panels in the various sides of a helicopter could have looked somewhat like faces on each side of the machine to someone 2500 years ago.

As they moved, they would go in any one of the four directions the cherubim faced; the wheels did not turn about as the cherubim went.   The cherubim went in whatever direction the head faced, without turning as they went.   Ezek. 10:11 (NIV)

Ezekiel had no words for rotors, but “whirling wheels” would serve very nicely.

I heard the wheels being called “the whirling wheels.” (Ezek. 10:13 NIV)

Helicopters can rise vertically or hover, and the pilots would be in them.

When the cherubim stood still, they also stood still; and when the cherubim rose, they rose with them, because the spirit of the living creatures was in them.  Ezek. 10:17 (NIV)

In the following passage, visualize the helicopter’s blades rising as the blades begin lifting the wheels from the ground. Watch as it moves across the landing field to the east gate.

While I watched, the cherubim spread their wings and rose from the ground, and as they went, the wheels went with them. They stopped at the entrance to the east gate of the Lord’s house, and the glory of the God of Israel was above them. Ezek. 10:19 (NIV)

The above passages were from a vision that Ezekiel had almost 600 years before Christ was born. If we had seen that vision today, we would likely have thought “helicopters.” We very likely would have actually seen helicopters in our vision, because that would be an easy image to bring to focus for such an unfamiliar object.

The vision was very likely not about helicopters at all, but could have been. Although we do not know what Ezekiel actually saw, the commentary accompanying the scripture tells us that Ezekiel was describing four angels with interlocking wings, and he was depicting God’s glory leaving the temple.

It is our own knowledge and culture that transforms what he described into helicopters when we read it in the context of our own experiences! 

In our own words.

By similar fashion, when we see something in a vision that we have never seen before, we have no choice but to describe them in words that we have at our disposal – words we are familiar with, and images that we are familiar with.

Fortunately my own visions have been of modern structures, hills and of images of people, such as Jesus, so my descriptions are accurate and easily visualized by others. Such was not the case in many Biblical Visions.  On the other hand, my mind might have converted what I saw into the most familiar things I knew.  I’m reporting what I saw and see today when I replay them in my mind.

Symbolic Images.

Biblical visions were often shrouded in symbolic images, perhaps because there were no contemporary scenes that would sufficiently depict the message that God was delivering.

In the first year of Belshazzar king of Babylon, Daniel had a dream, and visions passed through his mind as he was lying on his bed. He wrote down the substance of his dream. Daniel said: “In my vision at night I looked, and there before me were the four winds of heaven churning up the great sea.”

“Four great beasts, each different from the others, came up out of the sea. The first was like a lion, and it had the wings of an eagle. I watched until its wings were torn off and it was lifted from the ground so that it stood on two feet like a man, and the heart of a man was given to it.” Dan 7:1-4 (NIV)

Deciphering the indecipherable.

According to commentary, the lion with eagle’s wings represents Babylon because of its swift conquests.

Although my visions are easily described in modern day language, their interpretation is not at all easy, and leaves much room for doubt. I saw them, and I can rerun them as often as I like, but unless I understand the meaning of the symbolic images, no accurate interpretation can be made.

Just Ask.

Sometimes the Biblical prophets had a way around this.  Ancient prophets often were able to ask bystanders how to interpret what they saw:

I approached one of those standing there and asked him the true meaning of all this. So he told me and gave me the interpretation of these things: “The four great beasts are four kingdoms that will rise from the earth.”  Dan 7:16-17 (NIV)

I had not been fortunate enough to hear spoken words in my visions so I had to ask through prayer, or depend on scripture to enlighten me. As you will see in The Eulogy, later in this book, when I received words, they nearly frightened me to death!  (Comment by Oldtimer June 2007 – The Eulogy has already been posted – some of these are out of order)

Cryptic Answers.

Sometimes however, angelic answers were cryptic or had ambiguous meanings, especially relating to time. For example, in the passage below, time, times and half a time can mean almost anything from a few years to millennia.

The man clothed in linen, who was above the waters of the river, lifted his right hand and his left hand toward heaven, and I heard him swear by him who lives forever, saying, “It will be for a time, times and half a time. When the power of the holy people has been finally broken, all these things will be completed.”  Dan 12:7 (NIV)

Sealed unto the end.

Sometimes the answers were deliberately sealed as in this passage:

I heard, but I did not understand. So I asked, “My lord, what will the outcome of all this be?” He replied, “Go your way, Daniel, because the words are closed up and sealed until the time of the end.” Dan 12:8-9 (NIV)

The common theme in visions is that they bring a message directly from God:

“I am the LORD your God, who brought you out of Egypt; I will make you live in tents again, as in the days of your appointed feasts.  I spoke to the prophets, gave them many visions and told parables through them.” Hosea 12:9-10 (NIV)

More to come.

God even tells us that as the End Times approach, He will increase the messages in great numbers.

‘And afterward, I will pour out my Spirit on all people. Your sons and daughters will prophesy, your old men will dream dreams, your young men will see visions. Even on my servants, both men and women, I will pour out my Spirit in those days. I will show wonders in the heavens and on the earth, blood and fire and billows of smoke. The sun will be turned to darkness and the moon to blood before the coming of the great and dreadful day of the LORD. Joel 2:28-31 (NIV)

The next section describes a dream that I experienced just as I was waking up that, at first, seemed to have no relationship to the Vision of The Moving Hills or to healing. As it turned out, it was clearly in keeping with both.   I call it The Comic Strip Dream – next.

Vision of The Fruit on The Cross

The Fruit

Most Christians have read the fruit and the vine passage by Jesus.  This vision was very brief and somewhat mysterious.  I think it relates to the fruit of the cross, for it is the cross that we most often use as a symbol of our faith.

I am the vine; you are the branches. If a man remains in me and I in him, he will bear much fruit; apart from me you can do nothing.   John 15:5 (NIV) 

Wednesday July 8, 1998

I had a brief vision that night, the first in about 6 months.  I saw a well-formed cross with shadows on the edges as if highlighted from the front, and seen from about a 45 degree view.   There was a very healthy, very thick vine growing around it with what appeared to be very large fruit hanging on my side of the cross.

If there were leaves, they were behind the fruit or behind the cross, as I did not see any.  I did see the vine quite clearly, from the thick roots at the base to the even thicker trunk looped over the cross arm. 

The thick vine was looped around the back, over the left arm of the cross, then draped across the front toward the right and then toward me on the right, and finally ended in the fruit. 

The fruit appeared to be a huge bunch of grapes, all in one large bunch, shaped somewhat like a large hornet’s nest.   Grapes?  Perhaps by suggestion only, as the idea seemed to be the the fruit was bountiful, pure and perfect in form.  Fruit in any event.

If these were grapes, they were either enormous grapes or the cross was small.  I did not have a good reference for dimensions, but the fruit stretched from just below the cross arm to about 80 percent of the way to the ground.  

There was one point later in the vision where the cross seemed to be much taller and thinner and there was something going on behind it, and the vertical part of the cross was brighter, almost shining, but I couldn’t see it in any kind of detail as the fruit remained the same size in my view and obscured much of what was behind it.

The vision only lasted a few moments, and then was gone.  I wish that I could have seen what was happening on the other side of the cross.  Perhaps I was only viewing the backside of it and Jesus was on the other or perhaps it was simply someone attending to the fruit that I was not allowed to see.  It is one of the mysteries of these visions that sometimes I’m only allowed to see a portion of it and most often they are accompanied by silence.   I am grateful for those few things God has chosen to reveal to me.   I’m not complaining.

There are many references to the fruit of the Holy Spirit, and this vision seemed to relate the fruit to the Cross.  Perhaps the fruit of the Cross is the Holy Spirit who was God’s gift as promised by Jesus.

I started receiving these visions after a “Clear Warning” that I was going to die.  It was an earnest prayer within God’s will that seemed to save my life.   I started relating these visions to you, gentle reader, some ten years later.  I did not start with the first visions that I had received in fear that you would think this is fantasy or fiction.  It is neither.  However, for the next few days I will go back to the first two visions I received.   There are a number of others that are end-time related and I’ve saved them for last.  

So next I will tell about the vision of The Monk and the Dark People.   It is a sort of an examination and is the very first vision that I received after the Clear Warning, and for that matter, the first ever for me.

The Visit

The Visit

After that, he poured water into a basin and began to wash his disciples’ feet, drying them with the towel that was wrapped around him.  John 13:5 (NIV) 

Thursday, March 27, 1997  (Maundy Thursday).

My wife and I went to Maundy Thursday services.   I had planned to participate in the ritual foot-washing, so I took the time to wash my feet carefully, and put on my best socks and shoes in preparation.

I had never been to a church that did foot-washing and I was not even aware that our church did either. Jesus washed the feet of his disciples and told them to then wash each other=s feet.  It is very moving.

 Now that I, your Lord and Teacher, have washed your feet, you also should wash one another’s feet.  I have set you an example that you should do as I have done for you.   

I tell you the truth, no servant is greater than his master, nor is a messenger greater than the one who sent him.  Now that you know these things, you will be blessed if you do them. 

John 13:14-17 (NIV) 

Soon after arrival, I knew that I could not join in the foot-washing because the Holy Spirit began to take hold of me and I began to grieve what had happened to Jesus on the cross.  I grieved as if I had personally put Him there.  I took full responsibility and I was just torn with grief at what I had done.

I prayed constantly throughout the service.  I prayed that Jesus would forgive me for what happened to him, and to forgive all men for the way we treated him.  I became so emotional that I knew that if I tried to wash someone’s feet, I would make a spectacle of myself in front of everyone, and would probably spoil the mood for everyone.

When the ministers began to remove the church fixtures, candles, podium, and communion cups as they began the ritual of stripping the church, I became more and more distraught, and began to sob.  I had not known what Astrip the church@ meant, but it hit home and I was torn apart. 

There was no way I could hide it or control myself.  Thankfully, as part of the ritual, they dimmed the lights and we were left in the dark to suffer the loss of Christ.   When the service was over, I completely broke down, crying on everyone’s shoulder and had to ask my wife to drive me home.  In the car I was in total and uncontrollable grief to the point that she almost stopped the car.

I had spells of crying all evening long.  It was as if I had lost everybody I had ever loved all at once.  Every time I thought of the church, I thought of Jesus on that cross and then I would break down again.

Friday, March 28, 1997 (Good Friday).

At prayers, about 1:00 A.M. the night of Maundy Thursday, (actually now Friday morning) I asked God again for forgiveness.  I was sincere about asking him to forgive me for what I had done to Him on the cross. 

I somehow felt personally responsible for Christ=s death.  When I began to find peace in my prayers, I proceeded with two requests. 

The first was that He allow me to see or talk to my Mother, and the other that He allow me to have spoken words accompany my visions.  As I explained it to God, I needed to tell my Mother how sorry I was that I had not been able to minister to her while she was dying of lung cancer the year before. 

I also explained to Him that the visions were difficult to interpret without words accompanying them.  I was afraid that I was going to read something into the visions that were not right.

The spiral.

Soon I had a vision of a very small, very distant light that became a white mist, sort of spiral shaped, highlighted by orange.  It was somewhat like a distant cloud at dusk, lighted by an orange sun over the horizon.   Out of that spiral came a woman, at first very small, very far away. 

She was flying, almost swimming toward me very rapidly, still moving through the spiral mist, twisting to its shape as she came toward me.  As she grew nearer, it was apparent that it was a young woman with dark hair.

She was draped with a white strip of cloth around her breasts and trailing past her feet, but showing that she was very scantily dressed.  Her face was filled with joy!

Not recognizing the woman, and fearing that this was some unwanted fantasy, I rejected the vision and it disappeared.  Immediately afterward, I began to think that this could easily have been my mother when she was about the age she was when I was born.   That would explain the look of joy on her face as she approached me.  

Soon I became convinced that it was Mother and I began to cry out AMother, I’m so sorry that I rejected you!@ 

By then it was too late, and I have never had the opportunity to see her again in my visions.  She has reappeared in some dreams however, and I am always glad to see her, and we often talk in my dreams.  But, I know that they are just dreams. In my dreams, she is always young and very much alive.  I will see her when my flame moves to the other side of the window and I join her with God.

There were no words spoken in this vision, as there have been no words in any other vision that I have had up to this point, nor within this vision.

However, the following morning, I had the surprise of my life when I heard The Eulogy.  My prayer for spoken words had been answered in an unexpected manner. 

I learned the hard way that you have to be careful what you pray for!  (Next)