When I was a new believer everyone thought my call was evangelism. I was fine with it because it made sense; I loved to share about Jesus with everyone because of the great darkness He rescued me from. I had an immediate boldness which was directly opposite of my personality prior to finding Him which kept me quiet and shy. That boldness got attention from many leaders who wanted me to use my gift as they directed. But something in me didn’t feel right when others “defined” what I was called for. I was trying to see who I was and often times didn’t fit into the armor they wanted to dress me in. Something felt constricting if others told me I was made to exist for the sake of promoting their ministries when all along I knew I had my own.
I immediately received “words of knowledge” and expected Daddy to answer my prayers as soon as I asked Him. I would see drunks sober up right in front of my eyes and gain confirmation on prayer requests through the Word. A pastor’s wife once said to me, “You’ll calm down one day because it isn’t always as exciting as it is when you get saved.” I remember asking her, “Wouldn’t my love for Jesus and zeal for Him increase over the years?” I walked away bewildered, but confirmed in my heart that I would press on to see all Daddy wanted me to see. My personality began to emerge and I changed from the solemn introvert I had become due to my upbringing, into a creative extrovert. Suddenly, I saw myself as someone who could make a difference in this world.
Not long after my salvation I was engaged to a man whose family would cringe when I walked into a room. I could feel the resistance in the atmosphere but took it on as being my fault because they didn’t understand Daddy in the ways that I did. Evangelism was definitely activated as one of my gifts because I needed exuberance to share of all the insights I was receiving from the Lord. Consequently, more gifts were emerging and I had a chance to operate in the gift of healing. My x-fiancé’s uncle was dying in the Veterans hospital and we were all called into the room to say our last goodbyes. The family didn’t want me to visit the uncle out of fear of bothering him with “Jesus” talk. I knew Daddy was setting me up for a chance to minister so I stood quietly and sought eye contact with the dying uncle. Our eyes met and I walked over to his bedside. He had tubes in his chest and could not speak. I told him to blink once for “yes”, and twice for “no.” I asked him if he “was afraid of death?” One blink. I asked him if he “wanted to meet Jesus when he did die?” One blink. I asked him if he would, “mind praying for ultimate healing and accepting Jesus to prepare for heaven?” One blink. I asked if, “He would pray a prayer from his heart for Jesus to forgive all of his sins?” One blink. I spoke slowly as I prayed a prayer of deliverance, salvation and healing; giving him time to pray it after me. He had tears streaming down his eyes when I finished. I had done what Daddy told me to do without having any knowledge of the healing, deliverance and salvation being scriptural of the Greek reference to “Sozo” that Jesus walked in while on this earth. I simply did what Holy Spirit told me to do. It wasn’t about being liked or understood by people in this family, it was about learning to walk as Jesus did, doing what Daddy said.
We left the hospital and ventured back through Virginia and crossed over the Maryland line when we got a phone call from the family. “You will never believe it”, they said. “Uncle Bob is completely healed and getting discharged from the hospital”, they exclaimed. I was stunned and my x-fiancé was speechless. Daddy not only resurrected this man’s life, but He gave him wholeness and delivered his spirit from oppression as well. This proved to me that we can do all things through Daddy’s strength. I realized just how important it was to be obedient to Him in the face of insurmountable circumstances. I was hooked on healing from that moment forward.
This experience launched me into greater expectancy for the miracles that Jesus did. I coupled my profession of faith with stories of healing everywhere I went. My personality was evolving through hunger for more of God. In attempts to find out what my gifting’s were I took the Meyers-Briggs personality test that was offered through my Christian therapist at the time. It took me twice as long as most to finish because so many of the questions had more than one answer that defined me and I wanted to be accurate in my assessment of myself. I would struggle to determine if, “I liked factual information or the ability to self-perceive it”. Due to my re-thinking of decisions concerning feelings, I literally need a bottom line result and the ability to decide if I agree with the facts in order to feel my pull toward a decision. “Give me the bottom line, what r facts? But it really doesn’t matter because Daddy can change it anyway”. The questions of choice required an “either, or” response, not both. But I am a conglomerate of feeling and thinking. Hence, I did not feel the test was expressive enough for my way of processing information. The results were in-conclusive, a split down the middle for every category except for being an extrovert. Amazingly, I no longer kept my expressions from other people, a real change from my growing-up years. I walked away however, from the test feeling constricted; why didn’t I have any distinct characteristics? Were my gifts evenly distributed or was I insecure in my identity? Since I both ponder and feel through my circumstances, how could I be more of a thinker in one case but feel through a different situation? Instead of seeing my good qualities, I walked away with sight on my shortcomings. I did this often at the doctor’s office too. I would see my long list of ailments that had plagued me since childhood, and believed that sickness was my lot in life and a cross I would have to bear. I would continue my education with college courses in psychology, trying to make sense of why I was the way I was. I was used to seeing therapists since a small age, so in choosing to continue the practice when I was an adult, I subjected myself to their “psychological to-do “ lists while managing the law at church. It seemed that for a number of years, I was allowing myself to be directed by the worlds way of systematic understanding. Even in the church, I was succumbing to a study that projected worldly belief on spiritual components instead of the spiritual components impacting the world’s belief. I knew Daddy wanted me to be free from all mindsets of doubt, unbelief and confusion. He was either capable of raising a spiritual standard, or not. I made up my mind of answering life’s questions through His definitions.
Since my first attempt at the Myers-Briggs test, I have seen multiple miracles, healings, signs and wonders and prayed for much of it myself. I have even had two therapists call me for prayer because they needed counsel and recognized that my ability to understand “unseen and unknown” things grew supernaturally in the time they knew me. Evangelism was a great stepping stone to counseling and I still do both, but after years of walking close to Daddy I am happy to say that my exuberance for all that He has, has multiplied. Recently, I re-took the personality test and discovered that my scores were directly opposite from when I first did it, and I’m just a few points shy of teetering on being an introvert. My test for ministry proved that evangelism is least on my list but all categories of the five-fold ministry were still very strong. This confirms my ability to change and be used as the Holy Spirit wants.
I like me and have persued my inner healing and deliverance for the sake of being used in multiple areas. I dream since I’ve become healed up. My wounding’s had me react in an “all or nothing” mindset but as I mature I see areas of gray. I am very different from the person I was 10 years ago when I was trying to find my place in the church. I can’t be defined by any one personality type and fitting into one out of the sixteen available prototypes seems small in comparison to Daddy’s scale. The very fact that I attend a charismatic church tells me that I am among many who exuberantly express themselves, but why would I assume He manifests the same way in everyone who tests with the same personality? It’s like saying He put us all on a conveyor belt and tweaked certain individuals to act in accordance to a prototype that is just “one quality” away from being like the person next to us. But if there are not even two sets of fingerprints that are the same, wouldn’t that mean Daddy is capable to create whatever He wants? All of scripture reveals the mysteries of God. I think it is safe to say that we as humans cannot quantify Him.
I have expanded past the realization that I can evangelize and pray for healing. I can do all things through Christ who strengthens me. If I am not walking out in the fullness of the Gospel than I am believing Daddy can only do certain things through me. John 14:12 says, “Greater things will I do than Jesus did”. In Him, we are one in the same and will grow through different seasons, utilizing different gifts stronger at times than others, but it doesn’t limit the capability of walking out in all things as we yield ourselves in obedience. Since Daddy is in the business of taking us from glory to glory it makes sense that as I sought my own “sozo” experiences in my walk with Him, to transform my limited view from a place of pain. The introverted persona I had prior to being a Christian was a result of abuse and wounding’s that told me, “I had no voice”, therefore I was reserved. After salvation I talked much more and came out of my shell once I knew Daddy cared about me and offered me new life. Later on in my walk I saw the importance of drawing near to Daddy in my quiet time and often looked forward to moments alone; making an introverted characteristic seem refreshing instead of the self-defined indication that I was a product of victimization. Our personalities are easily defined by this world’s system but it hardly gives credence to a supernatural Daddy who understands all that we have walked through. My background greatly influenced my character building and personal growth; my walk with Daddy and prophetic deliverance further shaped me into a new creation by the time I scored my second personality test.
I thought the concept of testing my spiritual personality from a world’s perspective was kind of backward, because business and corporate worlds use it to strategically place people in situations that are defined for “Producing a specific result” whether chaotic or productive. Is my personality evaluation going to place me in confinement when partnered-up with other “like” personalities because of how I scored? How am I supposed to be led by the Holy Spirit to learn new things if I have to succumb to a system that says, “I will respond best this way”, according to “test results”. What if I wake up on the wrong side of the bed? What if I have a hormonal imbalance because of sickness? Here’s the million dollar question, “What if I’m not delivered?”
This is where the rubber meets the road to me. We cannot quantify personalities with accuracy from a business approach. There are millions of people in the world. Do we honestly believe only 16 personality types exist from Daddy’s Kingdom when He made so many of us? Maybe CEO’s run companies like that, but the church isn’t supposed to be calculated, it’s to be inspired. Just factoring in the dramatic change in personality over an individual who has been delivered changes every dynamic about how he responds to circumstances. Pre-deliverance and post-deliverance tests that were birthed through the Holy Spirit are what the church needs to look for. Anyone like me who has lived life both oppressed by demons and then free of them can attest that one can only fully embrace the supernatural after the demonization is dismantled, and none of it can be understood by the world’s testing method. And praise God for that, because His mysteries are for us to live out and share so that all of the church is set free and releasing the captives outside its four walls.
Deliverance isn’t a “feel good” type of word but it should be. It has the power to give back a person’s true personality after he/she has experienced it. Daddy made each embryo with a distinct dream and then placed His dreams and destinies for each one into the design of the earth for a specific purpose. Even twins are not duplicates. Daddy is the original creator and expressed all of His creativity through our dreams and successes. He therefore understood the greatest need for His people to accomplish His plan so He sent His Son to be our deliverer from the snares of this world that would snuff out our spiritual advancement. The Kingdom of Heaven has always had a plan of deliverance in place through Jesus, and it isn’t scary or weird because Jesus came in peace and love; prophetic deliverance is what Jesus did. Isn’t it amazing that after Jesus delivered and healed people they were able to follow Him? Most of the time, they left His presence and brought their experience of freedom to a world around them that was oppressed. They felt good and were able to minister in new found ways, and see greater miracles in the lives of those they met.
Oppression comes in all forms. To qualify a person for ministry without his receiving deliverance is setting him up for defeat that makes him look within and feel ashamed, repent and strive forward seeking the next “Big touch” from God. Oppression is rampant in our world today but hovers more directly over the church in spirits of religion, unbelief, theology and fear. Just because some Christians don’t recognize the demonic realm, doesn’t mean it isn’t real. Take for instance the “doe-colored” Doberman Pincer, a breed of dog that isn’t recognized by the AKC of a breed that exists, yet the dog obviously does. Many people own this type of dog but because its color isn’t something certified from the officials, it gets no affiliation of being a dog and is therefore overlooked and dismissed as a reputable species. This is such the case with deliverance. Christians often speak of their ability to keep their eyes on the Lord so that the devil flees, hoping that the dismissal of satan’s power will be enough to convince them that they aren’t demonized. A method of striving comes into play because the Christian has to remind himself that the devil is defeated in order to secure his footing in the belief that God is bigger, all the while he succumbs to thoughts and behaviors that heap on guilt. Christianity as a whole is afraid to talk about or deal with demons so they chalk it up as a deficient ministry, negating that need for it exists.
Satan has bigger fish to fry in the spirit realm where he does his work and sends his demons to combat us on our level. Demonization is simply a demonic attachment to a lie or wound that one believed as a child and invites more to pile on throughout life as trauma’s re-occur. When one comes to know Jesus through salvation he should be surrounded by Christians who can prophetically see the chief and ruling demonic spirit that has kept all wounding’s in place, and tell it to leave. Immediately following, the Christians should fill those void areas with the power of the Holy Spirit because every smaller spirit has been expelled with the strongest. The healing process begins and hence the new believer is saved and delivered so he walk out in a sound mind without lying spirits oppressing him and therefore receive inner healing. Miraculously, his personality is transformed to align up with Daddy’s original design and destiny set before him when he was created as an embryo.
This complete process of salvation, deliverance and healing is the spirit of sozo that Jesus brought. I am not talking about the ministry called, “sozo” here but rather, the scriptural manifestation of what it is. Sozo is a Greek verb or action depicted in over 110 scriptures within the New Testament. It defines being saved, delivered and healed at once; it also could mean being raised from the dead, or raised from spiritual death. “Those who had seen it told the people how the demon-possessed man had been (sozo) cured.” [Luke 8:36 NIV] “The Lord will (sozo) rescue me from evil attack and will bring me safely to His heavenly Kingdom”. [2 Tim.4:18] “Though you already know this, I want to remind you that the Lord (sozo) delivered His people out of Egypt, but later destroyed those who did not believe.” [Jude 1:5]. To know the understanding of the Greek and Hebrew words in the Bible is to deepen the awareness of your inheritance.
“People need to be saved and brought to wholeness in every area of their lives. But before there can be a coming to wholeness, certain guarantees must be made to them. Otherwise they will not risk opening themselves to us enough to receive healing. We must have something they want.” (Jerry Cook, italics mine) To impart deliverance you have had to first receive your own. Jesus never gave anything bad to the people; it was always for their advancement in bringing the Kingdom that He healed delivered and saved them. For us to walk in His shoes and bring deliverance to our brothers and sisters, we cannot cause them harm. Bad deliverances have done some pretty bad stuff. If a child of God knows they need deliverance, asks for it and comes out on the other side of it worse than before, then they will not risk opening themselves up again. Who can blame them? But in reality it just means that the chief and ruling spirit wasn’t addressed. A simple declaration of the Word and commanding it to leave from a Christian who is delivered is all it takes for freedom. There is no voice raising, manifesting or resemblance to the movie “the exorcist.” Throwing up isn’t an option in the presence of the most High God and if it does happen it’s not coming from the ruling spirit and is more often a distraction. Jesus always valued the one He prayed for and did not “Lord” himself over them while seeming superior. He simply removed the problem.
The problem however is when the church negates that their problems could be demonic. The ultimate fear of demons keeps so many from stepping out in a ministry that could single handedly change the course of an entire church. Without the deliverance from demonization a person will never walk out in the fullness of their call in the miraculous, and you can bet that that goes for churches all the more. Deliverance is a gift from Daddy just as much as salvation, just as much as healing. “If you take away one single gift from a person’s life you lose a piece of the Lord’s character reflected through humanity. In time, the absence of that gift will jeopardize the overall color of God’s Kingdom on earth. It would be like taking purple out of the rainbow or the string section from an orchestra”. (Larry Randolph) Woe be to anyone who has the decision making capability to keep others from receiving all the gifts that Daddy has for them, not only will the course be thwarted, but prophetic words will have to manifest elsewhere.
I don’t know about you but, I want all of my prophecies to manifest and “then some”. My ability to be me has been a growing process and is still emerging, and I accept that some will reject me because of the messages I bring. I know people can distort what I say and use my testimony against me but they certainly can’t steal it. It’s my walk of deliverance and personality changes that give me the assurance of His wanting to do it for everyone. I’m not ashamed of how I have lived out the Gospel and through it all my motive has always been the same, share what I’ve learned because it was worth it all if it touches just one person. I am so much better off today knowing that I am saved, healed and delivered, and it is that message that I will teach, pastor, prophesy and give away.