Now is the only time we are given.
June Update Letter Part 3 of 4.
Now is the only time we are given.
Right now we are making significant headway on the house. Once the pluming is completed I will be finishing up the second bathroom we are adding in the master bedroom. This will be a great step toward being able to host people in need. Allowing them and us to have our own bathroom spaces will be a blessing for all of us. Since the existing plumbing had to be redone anyway, this was perfect timing. I will be very busy over the next month as the remodeling moves forward at a fast pace. I have also ordered 16 new windows to help with the windy winters. Our existing windows were neglected over the years and have become extremely drafty in spite of our efforts to remedy them. We also had central air installed for the sake of the people we will be hosting and for the regular group meetings and Prayer Resolution sessions we are having in our house now.
Immerse, the discipleship program I have started through Substance Church, is well underway now. God was amazingly faithful to provide the perfect people as our “disciples” and is bringing together some amazing spiritual leaders to teach on different topics. So far I have taught on prayer and forgiveness. We have also had others teach on identity and living under authority. I have really enjoyed teaching and have entertained thoughts of continuing to teach in other spiritual venues moving forward. Including the man who I was discipling before Immerse started, I am discipling four different men now. Amy, Michelle’s good friend and our roommate, is discipling the 3 women in Immerse. I can already see that these men will be well prepared to start discipling their own group of men soon (and so will the women whom Amy is focusing on). Now that we have taught on forgiveness we will be scheduling a Prayer Resolution session with each of them so that they can receive resolution for an aspect of their lives and will also be able to put into practice the forgiveness model we have taught them.
At Substance Church, Michelle and I continue to serve as Captains of the prayer team for the Saturday night service. We are constantly humbled by the amazing opportunity to speak blessings into people’s lives and help them to connect for further support. There are always new prayer team members joining whom we are responsible for training and empowering. We are also helping to develop official training lessons for the church wide prayer teams as we continue to develop and improve on the prayer team structure.
In regards to our Prayer Resolution ministry, I am currently finishing up going through the life of a younger man who is intent on being healthy so that he can be a blessing to the rest of the church community. It’s an honor to work with someone whose heart is set on serving the body of Christ. I have also been accumulating different stories from my own experiences with PR as a Safe Other so that I will be better equipped when I start doing more teaching on PR (God willing). It was a wonderful refresher to see the faithfulness of God and the work of the Holy Spirit to carry me through some difficult issues in people’s lives, bringing them to a place of full resolution and healing. Here is a story of God’s work:
Jill was the family’s Cinderella. She did all the work around the house. Her dad didn’t know how to act around girls, so she was discarded. He was very closed off emotionally, and she never heard him say, “I love you.” Instead she heard him say, “Oh look, I have another son,” after she came home from an already traumatic trip to a barber. Her step-mom had had all her hair cut off. Her mom didn’t know how to raise a girl either and through many subtle and not-so-subtle actions & words gave her the message, “It’s not okay to be a girl.” Her dad’s lack of affection and powerful words strongly reinforced that lie. In fact, she felt like she never belonged, even in her own family. She was now much older, but still lived in that pain. She still didn’t feel like she belonged and had developed the idea, subconsciously, that the only place it was okay to be a girl was in the bedroom. Everywhere else, she had to be “manly” in order to have any level of acceptance and to protect herself from abuse.
After accusing and forgiving the people who had taught her this lie, she rejected the lie that she was not acceptable as a girl and asked her heavenly Father to give her a truth.
She saw a massive, ancient, leather bound book lying open in front of her. The pages were turning. She loved books from the time she was very young. She saw the book close and her heavenly Father’s hand resting on top of it. She realized that she had not been living what He had written in the book and that she needed to stop living her own fairy tale and live according to his truth. Her heavenly Father spoke this truth to her, “You are who you are supposed to be.” Finally she felt like it was okay to be a girl, because that was how her Father had written her story.
Let me know if you would like to sit down and talk about how awesome our God is. I would love to grab coffee with you. If you would like to learn more about our ministry, please don’t hesitate to contact us. It would also be encouraging to hear about what God is doing in your own life! Please feel free to find either one of us on Facebook, e-mail us, or call us.
If you feel like God wants you to give to support what we are doing, we have a way where you can give a tax-deductible gift. Contact us for details.
Nathan & Michelle Banker
1236 Upton Ave N
Minneapolis, MN 55411