Of Miracles and Theophostic Prayer

It started with an article I read in the Dallas Observer when I was sitting at Bic's waiting for Nancy one morning several weeks ago. Andrea Grimes wrote an article on theta healing in the irreverent, wry style she does well.

The article saddened me deeply. Not because Andrea questioned if there really was a God. (That is a big, common and completely understandable question.) But because the theta healers seemed to be doing more effective work than the church.

My Christian faith runs deeply, but I have to confess, in 41 years, I have only once seen a true "rise up and walk" moment. My frustration was this.....If Jesus came to “bind up the brokenhearted, to proclaim freedom for the captives and release from darkness the prisoners,” then why am I so completely powerless to do the same in the lives of those around me? I can pray for people. Show love to them. But I usually have no ability to truly alleviate suffering (emotional or physical) on a long-term basis or to make any immediate and lasting changes on the complexities of living in a fallen, hurting world.

Moreover, if Christ is really, really, really, real (and I believe He is), then all the excuses in place ("you don't have enough faith" "it is God's will" etc.) are incongruous with what we teach of Him lame. Yet, no one seems to notice that.

My google search started with "theta healing" and through a random assortment of hypertexts wound up at "theophostic prayer." The official site, www.tpassociation.com has a directory of people who practice it. I contacted one of them and made an appointment.

The focus of Theophostic Prayer is on letting God do the healing (no mental gymnastics required) and for God to shine light on the lies in the person's life that are believed.

Simple? Yeah, I know.

I met with Carol and her prayer partner, Annette. (Theophostic prayer ministers work in pairs). My specific issue was in dealing with some very dramatic physical reactions to an emotional trauma I experienced. The office is in a little white house with chickens in the yard and flowers all around it. As I walked up the porch I was very, very nervous.

I wasn't sure what to expect. As for "enough faith" I can promise I didn't have it. I was just sort of taking TP for a test drive. The interior of the office was warm and welcoming. I took a seat on the flowered couch and made a mental note of the tissue box nearby.

They asked me what happened. I shared. Then they prayed, simply. No large vocabulary words. No copious reading of scripture. Just a simple request to God and periodic questions about what I was thinking or feeling.

Our session--which took way longer than I thought it would--was cut short because they had another appointment. Though I didn't have dramatic results, it did feel good to talk openly to people with such kind eyes. I made another appointment. (Again, not really sure that it was worth the time, but they work on donation so it wasn't like I was being charged hourly if it didn't.)

What happened over the next four days, was completely unexpected...as if some big plan to heal me were set in motion. The physical symptoms were bad Saturday night, and I woke Sunday morning to find John's hand on my head. "Are you praying for me?" I asked.

"How did you know I was praying?"

(Okay, don't weird out at this part.) "I felt God's power coming from your hand and flowing into me. Pray out loud so I can hear you."

He did. As John and I lie there praying, I began to join him. I prayed like the theophostic prayer minister had and began asking God to expose the lies I was believing. They started coming to mind and I began confessing them. The moment was so holy and so powerful, I can't find words to express it. It was as if God were right there in the room.

For the first time in my life, I experienced a dramatic "rise up and walk" moment for myself.


NancyJ said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
NancyJ said...

talk about radical transparency

CrossPointeDave said...

what an awesome confirmation of the power of prayer! As a minister, I have only experience that feeling you described with John with one lady who came to an anointing service we held at my church in Chattanooga. I remember placing my hand on her head while making the sign of the cross with oil on her forehead and praying for her. It was almost like electricity for both of us. I don't recall what chronic illness she was battling but I do remember her reporting that it improved dramatically. Sadly, I have prayed for healing in the same type of way for my sister-in-law's with a different result.

Mrs. Troy said...

Prayer is a powerful thing. Powerful like sunshine, like rain, like the long cold months when wild seeds lie still under rotting leaves. We only notice the flowers of spring, but the power to make them started on the other side of winter.

I see the power of Jesus in the lives around me like that. I see His supernatural power in countless ways. I think Jesus is primarily a nurturing creator, and prefers deep, profound change over the quick showy stuff. Sure, He does that, too - like the TV landscaper than transforms an overgrown backyard into a outdoor showroom over a weekend. (Like my friend freed from addiction in an instant) But, the real skill is in maintenance and planning for the longterm. (Jesus, show me how to pay rent this month... give me wisdom to deal with my kid... teach me a song to sing because I feel very sad...) Constant, constant, our needs never stop. Who has the patience and love for that? Jesus does - that he never gets tired of caring for us daily is the most profound miracle of all.

Ronbot Van Helsing said...

"Theophostic Prayer Ministry" is Scientology in disguise.

A "TPM facilitator" (Scientology Auditor) leads the seeker (Preclear) through a "session" (same term as in Scientology Auditing) of "guided imagery" and "directed visualization" ("Dianetic reverie", "mockups" and "mental image pictures") towards "mind renewal experience" ("Clear") by dealing with past buried memories that may still be bringing you down today ("Engrams").

They claim that they seek to bring you to self-responisibility (Hubbard's "Self determinism") even as they keep you addicted to more and more "TPM Sessions".

They call each person's session a "case" (just like Scientology) and offer "training", "courses" and "seminars" (just like Scientology) in TPM Facilitating, which is simply Auditing without the E-meter.

Cathy Hutchison said...

Hi Ronbot,

This wasn't my experience.

BTW, have you met Scientologists? The only one I ever did wouldn't break eye contact.


It was way creepy.

I appreciate your comment though.

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