By Mike Manzie & Rocky Pisor
Each day I have the great privilege of hearing the wonderful testimonies that come out of our counseling sessions. Often these are breakthroughs where the Holy Spirit guides the session in a manner that exposes a genuine need. Once revealed, that need can be addressed then and there through prayer or more specified guidance. Our counselors feel the impact of these sessions too as they experience God’s goodness in their midst.
We are privileged to have people at NCM who have a keen sensitivity to the Spirit of God. This enables them to bring a broken person to a healing God for a face-to-face encounter. Deep issues of brokenness or sin are addressed regularly in the counseling work we do. But this year, in sessions with several new clients, the ultimate issue has come to light: the need for salvation. Here is a story from Rocky about how God directed his session with a new client:
As I neared the end of our ﬁrst session I heard the Holy Spirit speak softly to my heart, “Fredrick doesn’t personally know me.”
In my heart I said back to the Lord, “Fredrick has great respect for your Word. Should I share Romans 10:8-11 so he can receive you as his Savior and Lord by praying the scriptures?”
“Yes” was the answer.
With mounting excitement I turned to him and said, “Fredrick, have you studied Romans chapter 10?”
“No,” was his reply.
I explained that our God (who Fredrick addresses as “The Most Holy”) desires each of us to know him personally. Romans ten describes how to do this. Fredrick shifted his attention and was engaged in what I was saying. As our eyes met, I quoted the verses and asked him if he saw what action he could take.
He thought it through and said, “I could say, Jesus is Lord.”
“Yes, you’re beginning to see it!” I replied. “Scripture says that from the abundance of the heart our mouth speaks (Luke 6:45). You can absolutely verbalize that Jesus is Lord. The other action you can take is to believe that God raised Jesus from the dead. Do you see the promise of ‘The Most Holy’ in these verses?
He wasn’t sure what I meant at ﬁrst. So I shared with him about being saved, living life with the risen Christ, and about God’s promise that “you will not be put to shame” (from Isaiah 54:4). I have learned that every image-of-God person who walks into my office is dealing with some form of shame.
Fredrick was leaning forward; his eyes reﬂected a new understanding and a ﬂicker of hope. I invited him to pray these scriptures in his own words from his heart. He did and a spiritual transformation began within him. I prayed and asked the Holy Spirit to activate this new life in him fully. The atmosphere within the office shifted. There was a tangible feeling of hope and new beginnings! I shared that being saved and building a personal relationship with God was the perfect way to begin his redemptive journey of recovery and restoration.
I’ve seen many clients since January but during that time I’ve had the privilege of watching four of them begin their redemptive journey by praying this prayer. So many of the men and women we see at NCM carry deep sexual brokenness and a profound level of toxic shame. However, it thrills me beyond words to see our clients connect with God (some for the very ﬁrst time). I’m also thrilled when they begin healing from life-long shame! These are two of the many keys to recovering the life God intended each of us to live.
As you’ve read this has something stirred inside you? Is there a longing for deeper connection with God and others? Is there a place of shame that you’ve kept hidden deep in your heart that you really need Jesus to heal? Take a moment to ask God about this. Then listen to His loving response. Reach out to a fellow believer you trust or call and ask our prayer team to include you as we pray each Wednesday. May you, too, continue on your lifelong redemptive journey. Peace, grace, and hope to you.