© 2005, George
Hartwell M.Sc., www.HealMyLife.com,
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Potential gains through Life Transformation Therapy:
New life, energy, optimism.
A positive personality shift.
A fruitful relationship with God as 'one with the Vine.'
Ability to enjoy marital intimacy.
Openness to real community.
Communication with God as a life style.
Post Traumatic Stress Disorder
Root personality patterns that destroy marriage
anger /forgiveness issues
anxiety and depression
emotional immaturity and emotional intelligence
grief and loss
Two ministers with experience in deliverance (traditional and Ellel) sat in on and provided feedback on a Christian couple experiencing a therapeutic Life Transformation Christian Retreat.
The Basic Principle of Life Transformation Therapy is that "An encounter with God heals our lives."
As a result of these principles the prayer encounters that I have used in Listening Prayer Therapy are both more precise and effective than previous methods. These advances characterize the Third Generation of inner healing:
1. PRECISE: We let the Holy Spirit guide us to the precise point to intervene with maximum impact. For example, the Holy Spirit can bring a specific memory to recall.
2. FOCUS ON CORE BELIEFS: That healing of a traumatic memory needs to deal with specific core beliefs lodged in and behind the negative feelings in specific memories. The Holy Spirit will help us to recall what we believed in the hurtful event. An experienced interviewer will search out all of the beliefs resident in a specific memory and the feelings experienced around that memory. Cognitive Behavioural Therapy - CBT - has proven that effective therapy (depression) deals with the client's core beliefs. Cognitive Prayer Therapy - CPT - is effective for the same reason - focus on the Core Belief system.
3. REVELATION: Listening Prayer - that is listening for God's truth - enables the Holy Spirit to send God's (Rhema) Word to us. This REVELATION, this encounter with the living, active, penetrating, powerful "God's very Word spoken to me" brings great power to bear on wrong belief. REVELATION, received through Listening Prayer - this "God's very Word spoken to me" - countermands ( nullifies, erases, and overcomes) the power of the beliefs resident in the memory and replaces them with God's word. God's Word is powerful bringing new attitudes (including forgiveness), perspective and peace.
These methods are safe, fast, effective and result in enduring life healing. In comparison with secular Psychology, these Life Transformation methods are safer, faster, and more effective.
This guide to the Heal My Life Prayer Encounters gives an overview of the methods I use and teach. More detail is present under articles.
Life Transformation advances beyond therapy (healing) of core issues to the discovery of the new identity (including the positive attitudes and feelings of our new creature in Christ), the declaration of that new identity (put into "I am" affirmations) and the consolidation of this new identity through imagined practice techniques.
Many of these prayer encounters are described in more detail in articles by their name.
© George Hartwell (416) 234-1850, www.HealMyLife.com, E-mail
The "Put it on the Altar" prayer encounter allows you to offer people, situations and things to God. It allows God to be involved, bless and receive what we offer. The result is often deep peace, relief of burdens, and freedom from worry.
The scene we invoke, the picture we imagine, is based on the Biblical practice of making sacrifices to God on an altar. Put burdens, sacrificial service, worries, loved ones, work, and one's marriage on your imagined altar. Watch, listen and feel. What do you experience?
When we lay something on the altar, and picture ourselves doing it, we often experience a heartfelt release of control and deep peace as we let God have control.
Do this with a friend when they express their problems to you. Are you tired, burdened, heavy hearted with working it all out yourself? This is a great first step toward letting God take charge of your marriage, relationships, children, work or finances.
You not only can feel lighter but you have given God the right to move, to heal, to save, to deliver, to counsel, to comfort and to enhance communication.
The "Self Image Prayer Encounter" allows us and God to pull down the "Idol" we have made of ourselves. God, we know, has little tolerance of idolatry. God cannot bless you and your relationships, at least not fully, until it stops being "All About Me."
I've discovered that God acts to shake down our idols. When God acts we are humbled. We (like king N. in the O.T.) eat grass.
Restoration requires a change of heart, a dying to "Self-Image" so that it is not 'All about me.' In this prayer encounter: confess idolatry, submit the self-image idol to destruction, and picture it happening. I notice that things go much better when we die to our need for (worship) constant acknowledgement, affirmation, and positive feedback.
The right to be lord, "king of the castle," 'top dog,' the one with the most control, power or say is laid down in this prayer encounter. Control, (need for dominance) usually out of fear, destroys love; just as perfect love casts out fear. Love does not 'Lord it over the other.' Prayer involves confession and picturing getting out of the 'top dog' position.
In this prayer encounter one steps out of the role of Judge, giving up the right to judge others, to condemn, accuse, label and rail at their weaknesses. This resigning as Judge comes out of the recognition that when we judge we usurp God's right to be Judge. A repeat of the scene is necessary to admit and deal with judging ourselves.
One of our unhealthy patterns is being morally superior. This may be manifested as always getting the last word in every argument, or flaunting superiority in knowledge, skill, memory, etc. The prayer involves confession, forgiveness and picturing the prayer.
A prayer encounter for stepping out of the role of family Saviour - the one who sacrifices to keep peace, who diminishes their own needs and focuses on others to 'keep it all together.' It is unhealthy, unbalanced and, ultimately idolatry to be stuck in the role of "Family Saviour." It eats away at our relationship with God, intimacy, community and our own physical and emotional health. Instead of waiting for an emotional breakdown one can confess, receive forgiveness and picture stepping out of this role.
The mind becomes an idol when intellect is our source of security and our way of staying in control of life. The analyst, the thinker, the answer man, the 'know it all' often trusts mind over God; relies on self. This independence from God (autonomy) could be called sin. This means something is unhealthy, out of balance. There might be the pride that comes before a fall.
It is unhealthy for you or your partner, pastor, leader to see them as a god (goddess.) We know God has zero tolerance of idolatry and wants proper place in our lives but do we realize that we put another under an intolerable burden if they are to meet all our needs. Frustration and anger; hurt and disappointment; withdrawal and disconnection; obsession with the other; pleasing the other (with loss of our own true identity) are some of the results. Often this goes back to a history of disappointment with a parent that left our inner Child yearning and hoping for our parent's approval, love, acknowledgement or faithfulness (non-abandonment).
This prayer encounter is way to tackle the problem that we are expecting of our partner only things that God can provide. The purpose of the prayer is to refocus on God as our primary source.
A relationship involves both healthy and unhealthy holds, attachments and control mechanisms. Cutting unhealthy bonds, cords and attachments is freeing. It frees us from unhealthy relationship patterns and pressures. In the freedom from unhealthy ties (picture spiritual umbilical cords) a healthier more vibrant relationship can grow. Invite Jesus to cut the cords and picture Him doing it. Picture the person you have the unhealthy umbilical cord to. Picture that cord to yourself. Ask Jesus in to cut the cord. See Him doing it. Invite Jesus to step in between the two of you to be your shield. This simple powerful prayer has many applications. It invokes deliverance which we touch on next.
Prayer Encounters in Listening Prayer Therapy effect deliverance from evil while minimizing the attention given to darkness. Jesus is invited to do the deliverance and He does. Simple. Gentle. Clean. Quiet. Beautiful. Glorious.
On learning that a wrong spirit is present because of a connection with another person, invite the person to picture the two persons and then to ask Jesus to step in between. This simple powerful prayer and the associated image has many applications. It will deal whith something that transferred from another person including illness, worries, etc.
When doing the healing of memories one first invites Jesus Truth to replace the negative belief. If there remains a strong negative feeling in the memory invite Jesus as the Life to replace that feeling.
Given that 'Jesus stands at the door and knocks' invite Him in and ask Him to clean up the house. Let Him do it. Designate a room filled with the wrong feeling and ask Jesus to clean it up.
A good way to increase communication with God is to pull down idols - those things that get in the place of God in our life. Some of the above can be seen in terms of pulling down idols: "Autonomous Mind," "Self Image," "Saviour of the Marriage," Partner on the Pedestal" and "Here Comes the Judge."
The 'People Pleaser' fears people. That is to say people define how I act, what is right and who I am. People are my focus and the source of my hope for love and affirmation. It might be wise to die to the 'People Pleaser' identity and find out what one's identity in Christ is.
One image of the idol is some object we worship. This person or object has been invited or allowed into the sacred space within that is reserved for God. Since Jesus cleansed the Temple we know He can cleanse the temple within of those idols that interfere with our knowing and worship God in spirit and in truth.
Our inner child (also called our inner man, heart or human spirit) can be the most creative, life-giving, spontaneous part of us. Inner healing of our inner child especially refers to our life in memories in our first 5 years. John Regier says that Jesus more often provides a story rather than truth in language form when responding to the healing needs of our inner child.
Listening Prayer Therapy as developed by George Hartwell always includes picture, story and imagination. If you practice my Prayer Encounters you will find Inner Child work to be a simple extension of that work.
This simple, beautiful and powerful Prayer Encounter should be used
whenever someone has experienced events creating deep grief and the
possibility of a broken heart. Just invite the person with the broken
heart to picture putting their heart in Jesus' hands and leave it
there. Ask them how it feels when they do this.
Benefits: Comfort. He can mend our broken hearts. He can help keep us from hardened hearts. This enables us to love again.
Imagine a place where you feel safe to meet with Jesus. For some it is a nature setting: a beach, a garden or a field. Some need a special sphere that they can go into with Jesus to be safe. For meetings of our little child (of different age levels) it helps to have a designated safe place. Sometimes just going there to be there with Jesus, to play or to talk is a great healing experience.
Children need a chance to play. In 'Inner Child Work' that often means taking time to play with Jesus. Jesus can use these times to lead our child into needed healing experiences or just needed fun times. This lets our inner child become comfortable with Jesus, with ourselves and with playfulness.
Children that have been deeply wounded or shocked need comfort. This means time in the arms of Jesus the Comforter. Do not rush this prayer encounter. Leave the child in Jesus arms for ongoing comfort between sessions. Having Jesus as one's comforter heals; strengthens and bonds one to Jesus.
The Holy Spirit can bring to recall key memories that need to be dealt with. Healing dreams: the listening prayer begins from the strongest feeling in a dream. For problem behaviours pray from the state that occurs just before a problem behaviour. Discover the feelings and thinking resident in the memory. Invite Jesus for His truth to get liberating truth to replace the imbedded negative belief.
Start a session with prayer inviting God's presence, protection and guidance. A time of sharing helps you to find the focus. Be sure to find out what the person wants to change in their life.
State to God - out loud in a counselling session - what you would like to have cleaned up in their life. This is the answer to Jesus' question "What do you want?"
Have the person declare (out loud) that Jesus in charge and that He is Lord, Healer, Savior and Deliverer. Always needed if the person prays for God to "help" them with their problem under the declaration of intent. You don't want 'help' to cope with it, you want Jesus to deal with it completely.
A. Sometimes it is appropriate to ask the person to ask God for forgiveness for their part in this problem. (Use your discretion. Only do this if it is clear to them that this would be appropriate.)
B. It may help the person to picture himself or herself with Jesus asking for forgiveness and asking him "Do you forgive me?" Have them notice His response and report this to you. Tell them whenever they put a prayer into picture form to wait for the response and to report to you what is happening. Benefits: this provides an experience of the Love of God.
Translating the stated problem into a picture almost always helps engage the Healing presence of Jesus. Talk to them about what picture would work for them to put this need into picture form. Have them do it and tell you what happens.
After any inner healing ask them to report on their feelings. Deepen the experience and report of positive feelings. Have positive feelings stated as "I am -----" statements to state the new identity. Ask them what it would be like to life their life with these feelings and this new sense of who they are. Ask them to imagine a day in their life with these feelings. Does this picture come clear and how does it feel? Also picture a week, a month and 3 months with these feelings and this new identity. Have them write down the "I am" statements to review daily and to start each day be imaging what it would be like in this new identity.
Personal note: As a professional Christian counsellor, I must have the skills, ethics and experience of any other therapist. I bring over 30 years experience, a Masters degree in Clinical Psychology and follow the ethics of the College of Psychologists in Ontario.
Another Professional Christian counsellor in Southern Ontario, Canada, makes use of inner healing in his clinical practice. Alf Davis wrote the manual "A Theory and Process of Christian Counselling and Inner Healing" which he has used to teach in 18 nations. He likes to call his practice "Christ-Centered Inner Healing" as he mentions on his web site www.lovehealstv.com.
Faith brings the comfort, guidance and transforming power of God to my therapy sessions. Careful study, over the 34 years of being a committed Christian, brings wisdom and knowledge to the prayer therapy component of the session. It is my desire and nature to do so in a gentle, respectful and professional way.
To learn more about setting up a phone consultation with the developer of Life Transformation through Listening Prayer Therapy - phone 1 (877) 854-3990 or (416) 234-1850.
Marriage Counselling Decision
Dreams and Life Dysfunctional Personality Patterns Family System Faith of the Heart Inner Healing Life Crisis Life Transformation Therapy Love Letters to God Nervous Breakdown Smart Fear Theophostic Counselling Other Articles by George Hartwell