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The Truth Will Set You Free

A prayer for revelation is answered

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“Pastor, I’m going to share a story with you that I’ve never shared with anyone else,” Carlos said. “I believe that a big part of my problem with my father stems from this situation.”

Carlos comes from a Christian family that, although strong in the knowledge of the Lord, has struggled to find victory in Christ. I had been discipling this young man from our church and had come to realize that there was a generational stronghold of anger in the home that the enemy has manipulated for his benefit.

I had told Carlos that he needs to have a good witness in the home before he can enlarge his territory of ministry in the future. His relationship with his father is strained as they both tend to be opinionated and a little stubborn. I had advised Carlos that in order to improve the situation, he needed to consider helping his father with some home repair projects.

A Secret Shared

One night Carlos confided in me about why he quickly gets nervous, frustrated and angry when he has to work with his father.

When he was five years old, Carlos broke his bicycle and his father told him to fix it. Carlos tried every day, but because he was so young he did not have the strength to remove the nuts and bolts. His father would come home and ask him if he had fixed the bike and encourage him to try once again. After several nights, his father took off his belt and punished his son severely. To this day Carlos remembers this experience, and whenever he works with his father, he gets nervous to the point of rage.

You can imagine the emotions I was experiencing as a minister—I was hurting for this young man, I was angry for the injustice, and I wanted to fix it for him. However, I remembered that Rev. David Pletincks, my pastor in the United States, asks God to speak into a person’s pain with the truth. At times, the Lord will whisper comforting words or reveal something new. But often the Lord gives the person a miraculous word.

I submitted to the Spirit’s prodding to pray like Pastor Dave. I expected God to tell Carlos that He was there during that time or that although Carlos’ earthly father disciplined according to what he thought was correct, Carlos’ heavenly Father corrects with perfection at all times (Hebrews 12).

With Carlos’ permission I prayed, “Lord, You are the Father of truth. Permit Your Holy Spirit to speak into this difficult situation so that Carlos can experience the truth that will in turn set him free.”

Imagine My Surprise

Carlos began to weep as I patiently waited to hear what the Lord had told him. You can imagine my surprise when Carlos finally spoke.

“Pastor,” he said, “first, God told me I was not 5 but that I was 10. He then told me it was not a bicycle but my grandmother’s wheelchair. I had broken it, and my father had asked me to fix it. But day after day, I did not. In the end, I told him directly that I would not fix it. It was because of that rebellion that my father spanked me with the belt. But God has told me that I’ve been believing something that is not true. He has told me the truth.”

I shared with Carlos that Satan is the father of lies (Jn. 8:44). He can’t take our salvation from us, but he certainly can cause a lot of problems. He tries to leave the Christian incapacitated through a belief in something that is not true. The devil was telling Carlos for many years that his father was cruel for treating him the way he did. But the truth of the situation set Carlos free.

“Pastor, it is as if a weight in my brain has been removed,” Carlos told me later. “I feel lightheaded. Praise the Lord!”

God revealed something to Carlos that I could not, because I did not know the truth. The lesson for me is to have more faith in my Lord and depend wholeheartedly upon Him throughout my ministry.

As you are thinking of missionaries around the world, please pray that we would always depend on the Lord and engage in His ministry of truth, which brings freedom to those in bondage.

Transforming Power

Recently, I visited the house of Carlos in order to follow up. I’ve been encouraging him to tell others (especially his parents) this testimony. When I arrived, Carlos was out front mixing cement while his father, Juan Carlos, was indoors painting the living room. Both greeted me with a big smile, a handshake and a hug.

I see something in Carlos that is very special. He would like to go to seminary, and I’ve been gradually encouraging him. I say gradually because I’ve been waiting to see if he is serious or if this is just a passing fancy.

I approached him about seminary and was disappointed when he told me the next day that his father wasn’t supportive of this path. I couldn’t fault Juan Carlos for his perspective, since part of the Paraguayan religious culture is that the pastor has an established career or title prior to studying for the ministry. Yet I wanted to encourage Carlos to step out in faith and go through the open door God was providing. My advice to Carlos was to continue with his good testimony in the home and to pray.

When I visited, Juan Carlos told me how thankful he was for the change he has experienced in his son. “He is working alongside me without problems. He is different, and I am thankful to you and to God.” Then he caught me by surprise when he continued, “Pastor, if Carlos believes that the Lord is calling him to study theology and if he continues as he is doing now, I’ll support him in that decision.”

After complimenting his son, Juan Carlos planted a big kiss on Carlos’ forehead. We serve the only true God, who is transforming lives every day.

—J Spurling

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