Models of Christian Inner Healing
Christian Inner Healing by George Hartwell M.Sc.
I am a Christian marriage counsellor and individual therapist who learned from mentors who discovered and/or developed the tools of Christian inner and emotional healing.
I have been blessed by Leanne Payne's books and attending a CPM. listening prayer therapy. She focussed on the practicing the presence of God during inner healing prayer times.
I learned from John and Paula Sandford's Transformation of the Inner Man and Healing the Wounded Spirit. They kept reminding us that inner healing is based on the confession and forgiveness of sins.
We listened attentively to Neil Anderson's truth encounter alternatives to power encounter deliverance. He showed that there are new and safer ways to accomplish inner healing and deliverance.
Ed Smith's theophostics (TheoPhostic) brought inner healing to a new level by teaching us to focus on misbeliefs (lies) in a memory. Smith showed us that God's very word spoken to me (Rhema or revealed in the moment) was extremely effective in dealing with my wrong beliefs.
What is Inner Healing?
I have described inner healing as the experience of rapid, deep and significant release from addiction or negative habit patterns, from haunting memories from trauma and abuse, from negative feelings generated by negative beliefs, from negative self-concept and identity into a more fulfilling life filled with more positive feelings and experiences.
Leanne Payne's Inner Healing Focus - Practicing the Presence of God
Leanne Payne notes that resloving past abuse, trauma or issues in one's life brings about a new identity (self worth, sense of self and core beliefs). For Leane Payne this new identity is sustained by our listening. Where we focus begins to determine our identity. Therefore, we need to be focused on God's life giving voice - the word of god spoken to us - through listening prayer and the discipline of "Practicing the Presence of God." Leann Payne experienced the "Healing Presence of Christ." Jesus had His identity confirmed by listening prayer at His Baptism. He 'heard' God, the Father, say: "You are my beloved Son." Like Jesus, as we submit our lives to God, as we are baptised by water and the Holy Spirit, as our identity to confirmed by hearing the inner voice of the Father, then we will minister in the power of the Holy Spirit, speak with inner authority and make decisions with greater speed and confidence. Leanne Payne would say that we find our true selves through incarnation - a descent of the Spirit into our deepest being and lives. See The Healing Presence, Preface pg xiv, Crossway Books, 1989. To visit Leanne Payne's website see: Christian Listening Prayer and Christian Prayer Therapy
John and Paula Sandford's Transformation Model of Inner Healing
John and Paula Sandford saw inner healing as an extension of the call to confession and the forgiveness of sins as seen in James 5:16. They write: "What actually transpires is nothing other than the confessional, the revealing and confession of long-forgotten sins." They describe the root problem as 'imbedded guilts' and the fruit of these are the behaviour patterns that rob Christians of their promised abundant life.
They see inner healing as the bringing "into full effect that conversion, death, and resurrection which has already happened." It is receiving more fully the blessed fact that man's sin nature has died. It is "Helping Christians reckon their life as dead in Christ (Rom. 4) in order to claim the new life." Restoring the Christian Family, page 142, Logos, 1979.
Application to Listening Prayer Therapy: The Hebrew definition of "Confession" means literally "open hands." Confession is being open and honest. Confession is bringing what is hidden in the dark chambers of our heart out into the light of day.
But more than that what was hidden in our hearts, remembering that Theophostic means God's light, is brought out into the light of Christ. In listening Prayer Therapy we ask God to reveal what we have believed and decided in the wounded parts of our heart. When, in the process, we become clear and state about what we believed - that is confession. (The 'sin,' 'fault' or 'weakness' is our wrong belief which, of course, is a form of unbelief.)
Our unbelief confessed we are then open to hear God's truth. The light of Christ shines into the darkness. What was hidden and dark becomes revealed and light. Praise God for that.
The Bible notes that: "The Word of God is living and powerful, and sharper than any two edged sword &ldots;" Hebrews 4:11. So Listening Prayer Therapy is effective because it is a form of confession. It is also effective because our unbelieving heart hears the living Word of God - a personal word - God's very word spoken to me. And God's personal word for me is powerful. The skilled Listening Prayer Therapist will be able to set up situations where one receives the word of God in one's heart to be healed.
The Christian model of inner healing is one I call "Listening Prayer Therapy." In this model one deals with core issues at the heart level by listening for God's wisdom or waiting in His presence.
One fact you should know about trauma is that time does not erase the pain. Second, talking about and understanding trauma does not bring relief. Psychotherapy often brings understanding without significant healing of one's life. In the presence of God a skilled therapist who understands the process of listening prayer therapy can guide you to emotional freedom - significant healing of core issues at every session.
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