It amazes me when Jesus sets people free from any bondage they are in.
Some of our staff and I, have started to do discipleship. I told them that this would be a journey that we would walk through together. I don’t want to portray myself to them as something that I am not. The journey toward the Kingdom is one that should be done in community. It isn’t a solo journey. It isn’t one that should be led by anyone, but Holy Spirit. I told them that I would want them to be able to take what we discover about God and walk with others in their lives outside of work on this journey.
A couple of weeks ago, as we learned about how God is the best Father figure that we can have, a question came from one of the guys. The question that came out of the discussion was about what it means when the sins of the fathers are passed down to the third and fourth generations.
I explained that sins could affect not only the one committing the sin, but his children, grandchildren, and great-grandchildren. I told them that if the sin wasn’t dealt with, that it could repeat itself and affect the generations perpetually until the sin was dealt with. I told them that one could break the cycle by turning to Jesus and asking Him to bring an end to the curse. The man who asked the question said that he would like to put an end to somethings that he knew weren’t good for him or his family. I assured him that the following week, we would take care of it. For this week I gave them an assignment. To sit quietly in their prayer time, eyes closed, with the palms of their hands facing up. As they breathed in pray “Abba,” as they breathed out pray “I belong to you.”
When we next met, I asked the guys how things were going since our last meeting. Through their prayer time, one felt that he would be having a breakthrough. That he would experience God’s prosperity in the near future (something I will need to follow-up with). The other two felt that there was something heavy that had left their hearts. They both expressed issues with anger towards their families for little things, or even an irrational anger. I asked the third what his experience with anger was. He said he felt anger, but was able to exercise self-control. I found it interesting that the first two men are married and the third is not.
I could sense Holy Spirit say to me that there is a generational/cultural issue regarding anger that has been passed down through time. I have no idea what the root cause is. I don’t think that it matters at this point. Enough generations have suffered with this problem. People just need to be set free.
We prayed a prayer that recognized Jesus as Lord of every area of our lives. We prayed over the house and the compound that the home is on. Over the next three weeks I led each of the men through a few prayers breaking generational curses, and prayers of forgiveness. When we were finished, I asked them how they were feeling. One said that he was feeling better already and that a big weight had been lifted. Another said that he could feel Holy Spirit filling him up. The other one recognized that there were issues that he was going to have to address over time, but that he could sense a good change in his life. We gave God the glory and rejoiced over the victories.
For the two men that experienced what I would call “immediate freedom” (as I have no better term to use), each had amazing stories of reconciliation within their families and friends. Some stories revolved around people in their families wanting to turn from alcohol abuse. Other stories had family members calling within hours of the prayer sessions asking for forgiveness. One man had a friend who was a preacher and worship leader. The friend had walked away from Jesus and church life and turned to alcohol. As a result of a conversation about how good God is, the man agreed to stop drinking and return to church that following Sunday.
The great thing about living life in community, is that great follow-up can be done among us. I look forward to seeing how these men’s life have been changed by Jesus and how they are walking in freedom. I am also looking forward to seeing how Jesus uses them to set others free too!