One day, near the beginning of my spiritual journey, I began experiencing pain in my side... it was excruciating. It felt like acid burning deep within.  I went to the Doctors and was diagnosed with a tubular pregnancy. I was shocked to discover I was pregnant again, even through I was on the birth control pill. I had no idea a woman could become pregnant in her fallopian tube either. I had never heard of this before. The doctor scheduled me for surgery as soon as possible. 

When I mentioned this to someone at church they suggested that I ask Father God to heal me. They also suggested that I go to my Bible and read about all of the times Jesus actually healed people. I did so... and am still amazed to read how very much time Jesus actually spent offering God's love... demonstrating the forgiveness of our sins through acts of compassion.... and how often He was condemned or falsely accused for doing so by the religious leaders of His day. Even so... God's love and forgiveness was consistently confirmed through the healing of bodies and the delivering of souls ... to the amazement of all standing by. According to the Bible... no one else had ever had the power or God's authority to do so before this...  and no one had God's authority or power to authorize another to do so... lest they be called of God.. as an representative of Him... and His power. A confirmation they were being sent in His name... which represents His will and loving nature... would be the signs and wonders and miracles which would follow and be manifested through their lives.  Forgiveness and healing references**

 Of course, I thought God made this body... He can heal it! 

My faith having been increased through these readings, moved me to say something to this effect, "Heavenly Father, I have surgery scheduled, and I am afraid. You know all the facts. You made this body, so I am asking You to forgive me of my sins and heal by body, if it be Your will. Since in the bible Jesus healed people... and I have His Holy Spirit in me now, Who will pray His perfect prayer in my behalf... I am going to just sit here and yield to the voice of His Spirit, with the special language His Spirit prays... while I wait for Your will to be done."

Since this language comes at will... I began... I fully expected to be healed... or for something to happen... to tell me why not... since I believed God would be faithful to speak to me when I need to hear Him. As I prayed with my gift of prayer... in a tongue unknown to me, I began to notice a quiet voice speaking from deep within. It was repeating, "Go off of the pill." 

I don't know how many times it had spoken before the words finally registered. I remember responding with the question... "Go off of the pill?" 

I will never forget what I heard next.  God's Spirit spoke from deep within with the words, "I am the creator of life and death. I desire for you to trust me with your entire life... including your birth control, you no longer have need of it. You know you are not the one in control now... having surrendered your life to me for my purposes... and it would be foolish for you to use birth control.  IF I desire a life to come forth... it will... if this is not my plan for your life, it won't. All you need do is trust Me and My purposes for You and Them."

It was then His Spirit reminded me of my previous pregnancies... and the ways in which they had been conceived.... as well as their outcome. Through the eyes of hindsight, I could see, no attempt on my part had empowered me to prevent them... nor to make them happen according to my plan. I recognized as well, I had always wanted His will to be done, on some level deep within. Realizing I had not really known what was best for my future... I only thought I did... I now understood that God simply wanted me to trust in His plan. Surrendering to this awareness... I came to a place of deep peace and joy within.

Upon receiving His forgiveness and understanding, I was able to surrender to His will. The excruciating pain left immediately, never to return. 

When I went to the Doctors... upon examining me... he found no sign of a pregnancy.... so I shyly revealed to him my experience. Although I knew I was healed, and was praying God would reveal Himself to the Doctor through this event, what he said next surprised and encouraged me, "This has to be a miracle! If I had misdiagnosed you, a cyst of that size upon bursting... would have sent poison throughout your body and you would be dead. I am beginning to have a lot of women who are coming into my office who also say they have been healed after prayer... so who am I to say they are wrong. I myself, have no other explanation."

Each time my husband and I came together after that... I recognized He was a part of our union. Although I no longer desired to have other children... due to life not turning out like I thought it was suppose to, I surrendered my will...  hoping I would not conceive. Graciously Father God worked on my will... to conform it to His plan for my life..  I was invited to work in the church nursery after that... and being around the babies and other mothers... began to stir within me, the desire for another child... which I attempted to resist the best I could.

I will always remember what happened after that... it was Christmas... and as was my habit, I asked God to protect us from having another child. unless it was His will for us, when in response I heard, "Tonight you will conceive. If it is a boy call him Joel, if it is a girl, call her Bethany."

I was amazed... I had never heard a response before this moment, when I had asked before this, so I believed this must be God and not my imagination.... even so, I wondered. 

When I discovered I was pregnant, I told my husband about the night God spoke to me that I was going to conceive that night and about the names I was given... he was furious.  I had not discussed my decision to trust God for birth control with him... it never occurred to me to do so, beyond telling him about my healing.  Besides, nothing else had worked and I believed this was something which was understood between us, my having already told him of my having surrendered my will to God and the subsequent healing. Even so... he took offense... feeling betrayed and out of control, which only caused a thicker wall of protection, concealed in resentment, to come between us. 

Due to increasing problems in the world around us... and within our own life to include our marriage at times, and the abuse he was raised with... through his parentís severely dysfunctional marriage, my husband no longer desired to bring more children into the world. Due to the resentment, which was attempting to rise up between us, which I felt powerless to stop, outside of prayer, I became deeply concerned as to whether this tension between us would wound the Soul of our baby within.  Because of my concerns... I prayed for God's divine intervention and protection... that our relationship might be healed and my hubby would come to know of God's great love... and that this baby within... would be healed of any wounding within it's Spirit or Soul through our sin... and the inherited sins through our genes, and those who had come before us. 

By now, I was beginning to understand some of the spiritual mysteries hidden within the Bible. My family and others like ours, would be consecrated, set apart for a pure work of God... due to our having given God control of our lives...  so we... and our descendants would all be set free from the power of sin, it's curses and it's consequences, to include sickness and death and a corrupt nature. I had come to understand Jesus took all of these consequences upon Himself when He died as a representative of sinful man, so we could be liberated... redeemed from the work of the flesh nature, ruled by evil forces... personified through the rebellious dark nature of the devil and his fallen angels. I had come to understand... a promise was given to those of us who chose to die to this rebellious nature. Through our identification with Jesus He offers us a new life... free from the ruling nature of man.... that we might become spiritual beings. Thusly, the Holy nature of God would grow... and come to rule our desires and our choices... as we denied that which had originally corrupted us through rebellion and embraced His ways... which are rooted in love and truth. I believed this to be true... and received it in all of our behalf, by faith, recognizing the more of us who appropriated these truths/mysteries by faith... the quicker we would all become of One mind... enabling God's Spirit to rule through grace, love and truth. By then, having met others of a like mind... it was even more obvious to me... His Spirit had awakened within me and others, having imparted His Life through His Spirit... and He within was nurturing and fine tuning us as each new day dawned and we were transformed from within, with fresh revelations of Who He is and who we were... and were to Become.  

I embraced His promises to me/us... and prayed that this child would be born knowing God and His truth... that God's Spirit would come into it even while it was yet within my womb if this were possible. I asked that it would always know His Voice... and become the person God has created it to become... as I thought of John the Baptizer... and how within the womb, it is said, his spirit leap for Joy when it recognized the life of Jesus within Mary.  It was at that moment, the Holy Spirit fell upon Elizabeth... causing her to prophecy with regard to the soon coming Messiah... confirming... and encouraging both she and Mary to believe in that which had been promised them. Read Luke 1:5-56 in context.  

I began to pray over this life growing within me... feeling impressed to lay my hands on my stomach...  offering myself as a conduit for His energy... to be imparted to this baby within... singing in the spirit to it as I did so... singing with an unknown melody and tongue acknowledging it was God praying over it through me. I did this for my other children as well... bathing them in prayer too... even though they just thought mommy was singing.... or never knew I prayed for them... laying hands on them while they slept. I asked God to extend this prayer to their spouses and to their children to be, as well.

When I could get away with it... I would touch my husband while he slept, and would pray for his wounded soul as well. I ached for him... the pain of his childhood broke my heart. My prayers for him increased as the wall between us seemed to be increasing... rather than coming down.... and he looked to other means for comfort and love. By now I recognized his drinking was something which came through his genes and preconditioning through the lifestyle he grew up in and I stood in the gap that someday he and our children would be freed from that curse.... that it would stop with him.... and so far it has.  

In the beginning I prayed these types of prayers for my family daily.... as God revealed my corrupt nature to me a moment at a time.  But as time went on... something changed within me... I lost my peace. When I sought Him as to why.... I came to understand it was no longer His Spirit within me which was planting seeds of faith through prayer... but a religious spirit rooted in fear which was beginning to drive me to pray a formula... almost like a obsession, a form of bondage, telling me if I didn't keep praying these same prayers daily God couldn't answer them.  It was then God's Spirit told me to simply release my desires and concerns to Him... to stand with Him and  to let Him be God... to trust in His Spirit within me, to move me to pray by faith... not through fear.... to remind Him of the solution... and not of the problem... to ask for His will to be done, then to simply trust Him to bring it to pass, even if I did not agree or understand His ways or timing.  He reassured me it would be He in me who originated the prayers in the first place... when I asked for His mind... His perfect will... reminding me... Jesus lived in me ever interceding... as a mediator, imparting the desires of His heart. He reminded me He would watch over our lives as His will came into being for us... according to His timing.... but not according to our limited understanding. He reassured me His Spirit would move on me or another to pray His desire into being, when the time was right... He had everything under control. He explained, for me to be motivated by fear... that I must do something... He has not called me to do at the moment... would be a form of witchcraft and it was then He revealed to me... a lot of prayers which have been prayed in His name, which go unanswered... are because they are rooted in fear, self will and the need to be in control due to the desire to be God or due to selfish motives... rather than faith. He released me from the fear and confusion which was attempting to overtake me... and imparted a peace, which surpasses human  understanding.  

I stand in awe of Him... as I watch our lives unfold... seeing his wisdom through the big picture, not just in the details.... reassuring me, we have entered into the land of the promises of God... to receive that which has been stored up for us... and as an answer to not only our prayers... but the prayers of those who have gone before. He says this generation... will be the recipient of that which so many have cried out for... in times past! He assured me the greatest outpourings of His Spirit that man has known to date is about to take place.... it will rise up through a mist of darkness, a time of great tribulation on the earth... when men will face great fear through that which they see coming on the earth. This fear and darkness... will cause them to turn to Him for His sake keeping.  It has not always been easy to stand in faith... but I have been given the faith to know it will indeed all work out for the good... He having called us to a perfect work and this spiritual revolution.

Eventually my husband got over his shock of my being pregnant again... and embraced this child to be... but not until Father God's desire to pray for the future of my children and the generations after them, receiving the answered prayers of the generations who had gone before... was instilled into me. Eventually I began to include all children in my prayer... as well as the rest of humanity as a whole, God having given me as well as others, a greater understanding of His eternal plan. Ultimately I have come to see the joys... trials and tribulations of life... are there to teach us through contrast... of what is and what could be.... giving us the free will to choose to make a difference. They are also there... to offer us an opportunity to make a choice with regard to how we will relate with or to our Creator.... and all of life.... as once again... we, walking in unison with God... living as co-creators with His Spirit, take dominion over every living thing upon the earth.... beginning with ourselves as a child of God.

Shortly after I became pregnant, my husband came to me and told me he did not like the name Joel... he preferred a more Irish name. He clung to this new name he had chosen.... I said nothing.  There was always the possibility I might have heard wrong... so I gave the conversation to God... and asked Him to change the heart of my husband, if he did indeed desire to call our son Joel... were we to have one.  

Two weeks before our baby was born... my husband returned to me and said, "If we have a son, we can call him Joel... I'm tired of the other name, I don't like it much anymore."

After our child was born... Sept 11th... I discovered names and dates have a spiritual significance... so I looked up the names Joel and Bethany. The source I found stated, Joel means...'Jehovah IS (his) God'  Jehovah means... the eternal self existing One who keeps His promises for Us and Bethany means... 'Temple... or House of God'. We are the temple of God because God's Spirit lives in us... Please read 1 Corinthians 3:16 and God's house is to be a house of prayer. read Matthew 21:12-16 

I discovered my spiritual names means 'Sword of the Spirit' or 'Beautiful Woman' and 'Gracious Gift or Gift of Grace'. The sword of the Spirit is the revealed and spoken word of God which is a part of God's armor, which He provides for us as we stand with Him against the lies of the devil. Please read Ephesians 6 in context for a fuller understanding. Please read the letters written to the Romans and the Hebrews, in context for a better understanding of grace.

To be continued....