"Show how wonderful is your grace,
savior of those who seek at your right hand
refuge from their foes.
Protect me like the pupil of your eye,
hide me in the shadow of your wings
from the wicked, who are assailing me,
from my deadly enemies, who are all around me." Psalm 17:7-9 CJB
I usually depend not only on my study of the word throughout the week to teach, but also ensure that I depend on the Holy Spirit while actually speaking in front of the group. My desire is to allow him to teach through my vessel. That day, however, I listened to myself as I spoke and what was coming out of my mouth was pure confusion and error. I finally stopped, analyzed the next thought that presented itself in my brain and washed it against the text I was teaching. It was the complete opposite of the truth. At that moment, I brought the study to a screeching halt. I felt lightheaded and actually felt a burning on the top of my head. My thoughts were scrambled like a TV that was on the fritz. As I stood in front of the assembly in silence, I tried to regain my composure, but I couldn’t. I was confused and unable to speak as to what was happening. I stopped the study and every camera and asked everyone to take a break while I figured out what happened. A dear sister came up and laid her hand on my shoulder and prayed for me. Her heart went out and her words were beautiful. I thanked her and stepped out on my front porch and prayed. I wanted to know what I had done wrong. I wanted to know who was responsible. Soon, the answer came. Demonic attack. A spirit of confusion had fallen on me and it crippled my ability to teach. One of the deacons, a dear brother who has been with us from the start stepped out onto the porch with me. He asked if I was alright and I told him that I thought it was a demonic attack. He then told me that he had felt led to offer up a prayer request on my behalf during our prayer time. He confessed to having not done that and admitted his disobedience. I felt better because it let me know that this was a test.
I began our Shabbat meeting that day by addressing a question from a sister who said that there was someone who was interested in attending but she didn’t want to bring someone who would argue or cause trouble. I responded by reminding everyone that we had one of the easiest congregations to pastor as we all got along and even though we did not agree on every point of how to follow the Bible, our love for one another overrode that individualism and kept us as a loving family. I then asked if we were getting too comfortable because of that. In the study that day, we got our answer. We had grown too comfortable and took the easiness of our meetings for granted.
After we came back together, I informed the group as to what happened. The deacon who joined me on the porch told the group what he had experienced at the beginning of the service. A young man asked me that I had prayed for renewal and revival during the opening prayers and boy did we get it. Without another word, the group rose and joined hands to pray for me. Their prayers were like salve on a wound and the words they spoke were humbling and uplifting. Then the loving correction of the Father came to me.
All of the afflictions that were brought up in the group for prayer were brought forward and everyone prayed and laid hands on one another. We experienced a renewal of spiritual fire that we desperately needed. We gathered around each other and the love of YHVH poured from our mouths onto each other as we uplifted one another in agape love. The father of our worship leader ran home to retrieve his son to come back and receive prayer. When he returned, the young man had not come back with him. We were sad but we understood. We blessed YHVH for the food we were about to receive and the spirit at the tables was one of blessing and joy. Then the door opened. Our worship leader decided to walk back to our home and receive the prayer we offered. We rejoiced at seeing him there and prayed over him a prayer of healing and gratitude for the conviction YHVH had given him.
One of the most terrifying moments in my ministry became a time of renewal, revival, and fellowship. How much more will we experience this type of renewing spirit when the Enemy comes for us in a much more aggressive and hostile manner. I now know that I have brothers around me who will stand and defend me from the Enemy, the same as I would any of them.
Cole Davis and Other Contributors