This year’s Community weekend ‘Unbound: Keys to Freedom in Christ’, was another testimony of God’s faithfulness and his unending desire of setting His people free and making them ever more whole. Neal and Janet Lozano shared many insights on “deliverance” and how God delights in breathing His freedom into our lives. They specifically focused on a method they have been using for years in their own ministry, based on 5 Keys: Repentance, Forgiveness, Renunciation in the name of Jesus, taking Authority in the name of Jesus and receiving the Father’s Blessing. Many of those who attended testify to how God reached out to them, each according to his or her needs. Some have shared the following about their experience of the weekend.
‘Deliverance’ was never my favourite topic. To a certain extent, I always kept my distance and read just enough to see me through. So I came for this weekend not sure what to expect. However, on Friday evening and Saturday morning, I understood in a very clear way, even though I must have heard it before, that ‘Deliverance’ is for everyone, we all need to be delivered. I also realized that deliverance can be confrontational but not necessarily. Immediately I started seeing my need to be delivered and the possibility of helping those around me to be delivered. Scales were falling down from my eyes and I was exposed to this ‘new’ reality. On Saturday this ‘new’ experience left me pleasantly surprised, very much at peace. Sunday was a day of blessing. Our Loving Father ministered to me in a very intimate way and invited me not to stay any longer in the outer courts but to enter into the inner courts, to move on into the holy of holies. For sure I do not deserve this; but I know Jesus paid my debts in full. As I left Gattard on Sunday, I was conscious of the start of a new journey, a journey of intimacy with the Lord, a journey that leads to the inner chamber, the holy of holies.
It was beautiful to witness the freedom and joy that God brought to so many people. But He also worked in my heart revealing His Father’s heart to me in a new way. I experienced His embrace and love once again and knew His presence with me.
More than anything else, following this weekend, I will treasure in a new and deeper way, God’s imprint of His amazing love and mercy. The awesome times of praise and worship filled my heart with an overflowing joy, while the talks opened my eyes to who I am in Jesus Christ and reminded me once again of His everlasting faithfulness to me in wanting to set me free and in never being finished with working in me.
For years I struggled with a constant fear and lack of trust in those around me. This resulted in a strong spirit of independence which would shy away from the help of others as well as God. I came to the weekend, expecting it to be intellectually stimulating, what with the topic of deliverance being something I was morbidly acquainted with already.
During the Saturday morning talk about “Authority”, I realised that in over ten years of following the Lord, the concept of Authority never really set in. As adopted children of God, the Authority to rebuke evil is not just the liturgical wording in our baptism but is actually our birthright as children in God’s royal family.
The day after I immediately began to notice several changes in myself. Naturally, I still realise that this must be cultivated with prayer and an effort of the will, but although we call it a place of vulnerability, I must say I rather like it here.
Matthew Galea Debono
I came to the community weekend with a desire to receive and a desire to be set free from all that was blocking me to move on.
During the time of ministry, I renounced all that I felt and that the Lord showed me was blocking Him from being my Lord and Saviour. After many years I was specifically shown instances and people from my childhood who instilled fear in my life. Having renounced fear, forgiven those who instilled it, and also renouncing other things which were burdening me made me free in Him. It was awesome!
I really thank The Lord for having invited me to enter into a deeper level of this journey with Him which is surely going to be something very exciting I’m sure.
Fr Claude Portelli
I want to thank and praise God because He is such a personal God that knows all our deepest hurts prayers and desires. I have been praying for so long and he has heard my deepest prayer. I know that he has delivered me from my insecurities. I felt something being lifted as we were praying. I started crying, not knowing why I am crying and then I knew why and I felt something coming up and leaving me. I knew it was my insecurity. I had passed through so much and finally He set me free. I felt so free and at peace, undescribable. For this, I want to thank God and praise Him.
‘So if the Son sets you free, you will be free indeed’ – John 8:36
Before coming to community weekend I prayed that God will surprise me. During the talks I got to know about areas in my life which were not dealt with and I didn’t realise they were blocking the growth in my relationship with God. I experienced that letting go of past issues and forgiving people made me feel more whole and at peace. Truly experiencing freedom and God’s love, because He loves me for who I am and He has a unique place for me. Hence, even though I might sometimes lose the way, He always welcomes me back with open arms, because I am His daughter.
One of the moments I will always treasure following this weekend, is when Neal asked us to think of a person that we need to forgive. God surprised me at that very moment. I needed to forgive my mum.
My mother has been, and still is, battling chronic liver cancer and the chemo was starting to take its toll on her. So it was hardly surprising that she recently told us that she was seriously considering refusing to have any more chemo if the need arose. As far as I knew, I had accepted this decision and in fact I had told her that I would support her in whatever she did. However, I realised that, even though I knew how badly the chemo made her feel, my mother’s decision had indeed hurt me because it increased the harsh possibility that I may lose her sooner than I expected. Now, after the weekend, I have not only forgiven my mother, but I have given her and her situation to God with renewed acceptance, trust, and full confidence that He knows what is best for her. And I always try to keep in mind the prayer Neal had said: “Lord, forgive me for believing that I love my mum more than you do.”
During the time of ministry, God did heal me at a very deep level. An long-time unknowing unforgiveness and pain had become a stumbling block in my life in community.
The breakthrough came during one of the times of prayer in the weekend. I actually felt the warmth of my father’s love, and felt the deep warmth of God the Father’s love. For the first time ever, I could actually stay long enough infront of God the Father. All through the following week I prayed to God the Father, through Jesus and the Holy Spirit. For the first time ever, I could pray spontaneously to God the Father.