Testimony & Thanksgiving: I Have Been Renewed

by Joanne Salim

I came into the Treasure retreat feeling very troubled and worried, in search of some clarity for my life.

At the start of the retreat, I received an image of Jesus walking around to touch the participants one by one, and I cried out desperately to Him to not pass me by. He walked to me, placed His hand on my forehead, and I rested in the Spirit. I received a vision of myself as a fetus in my mother’s womb, and the big hands of God making the individual veins of my tiny heart. I felt safe and comforted in the hands of my maker but I also felt a huge wave of unworthiness. Who am I that the God who made the universe, the King, would call me and love me, a sinner?

As I entered deeper into the retreat, the Lord revealed to me past trauma I thought had been resolved. All the hurt and pain resurfaced. I yearned and prayed for joy, and to be set free from the chains of self-hatred, guilt, and shame. During prayer, a sister who prayed for me received an image of me as a little girl; Jesus was walking in front of me, and I was hopping joyfully behind Him, carefree and happy to follow Him. This was almost the exact same image I received the night before when another sister prayed for me. Through this encounter, God filled my heart with expectant hope and peace, as well as an assurance that He is always with me. I left the retreat with a renewed sense of freedom, knowing that all I have to do is to continue to follow and hop along joyfully behind my Father, and He will reveal where I am to go, in His time. I can claim the truth that I am no longer a slave to fear, I am a child of God.

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