BELIZE JOURNAL, PT. 1. For years I have advocated developing an inner healing ministry that gets to the roots of deep wounds and besetting sins in Belize. It is one thing for the churches to oppose drug decriminalization. It is another to release drug addicts from their habits. In the same way the churches rightly oppose the gay agenda. But are we setting gays free from their destructive lifestyle? We have taken strong stands against sin. But Jesus came to save, not to just condemn. Where is the Jesus who brings good news to the afflicted? Who binds up the brokenhearted? Who proclaims liberty to captives? I have not yet seen an inner healing ministry in Belize which does these consistently until last week.
I was one of 80 leaders who went to YWAM Belize for Westwood Ministries’ Potter’s Institute on August 20-23. This ministry is based in Kerrville, Texas. Westwood started coming to Belize to do healing intensives for leaders in 2003. It is now building a ministry center near YWAM in Roaring Creek. And Westwood is training Belizean leaders to carry on this inner healing ministry year-round.
Westwood’s three-day Potter’s Institute the most impactful three days I have ever experienced. And it is because the teachers let God do the work in us. At each session they shared profound biblical guidelines for an interior journey with God. Then they gave us one hour for a one-on-one encounter with Him. We had a series of probing questions to ask of Him. We had seven of these quiet times alone with God.
The subjects of our private conversations with Him were: What do You want to do with my life in these three days? What are the deepest heart issues that You want to address? What masks do I wear that You want me to renounce and destroy? What emotional wounds under these masks do You want to heal now? What besetting sins do You want to forgive, and give me power to overcome? What new identity are You giving me, and what destiny do You want to fulfill through me? And what is Your battle plan for preserving these gains, and gaining more ground?
It was the most comprehensive overview of my life and overhaul of my soul that God has ever done with me. And this was only their basic seminar! We examined the seven spiritual disciplines of abstinence and the seven spiritual disciplines of engagement. We grew in the habit of journaling our time with God. We saw how to reorder our priorities in our relationships. God comes first, then self, spouse, children, extended family, church, career and world. We looked at the variety of masks we use in these relationships to hide our wounds. But God sees them. We must let Him inside to do inner healing (see Ps. 32:2-5).
We learned the principles of inner healing. Our present outlook is often a projection of a painful memory. Our present emotion is often an echo of a past wound. A lie gets attached to this wound, and turns it into a bitter root that defiles many. I must confess the lie. I must enter into the wound with Jesus. I must give the wound to Him on the cross. I must receive His resurrected life in its place. Only then will His inner healing Truth set me free. He suffered our wounds before we did. He let them kill Him so He could give us His new life (Heb. 12:15; Isa. 53:5; Jn. 8:32; Rev. 13:8).
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