Healing, Joy, Revival!

Thanks to Andrea (Upland, Indiana) for sharing her story in February 2024.

It’s time to birth this word

I was hiding in a closet, crying, when I heard the audible voice of God at 4 ½ years old. Despite growing up in a secular home, I remember saying something like, “Jesus when I grow up, I want it to be different to this.” The reply I heard said, “Andrea, when you grow up, you’re going to be a good mummy. And you’re going to write books that will help Mummies like yours, and little girls like you.”

I carried that word in my heart for 50 years. Then the Lord told me it was time to birth those words: I started to write my first three autobiographical fiction novels. I simply took my prophetic world and dreams, turning them into books.

A cancer diagnosis

A verbal deal for seven books had been done with a Publisher. I was about to birth the word the Lord had given me.

And then all hell broke lose in my life. An aggressive walnut-sized tumour had showed up on my chest almost overnight. When you receive news like that, your world changes. The Lord said to me, “Do you want to be in my army? Then you have to have joy. I’m taking you to scary places and you’re going to be wounded. I will be glorified. But you’re going to have to have real joy.”

Supernatural connections

In October 2022, persistent chemotherapy had made me bald. On top of that, my Dad had passed away, and I knew I needed space to grieve. Not only had the Lord told me the title of my fourth book: Mama Bates Goes to War: A Normal Christian’s Guide to Joy and Suffering,’ but He told me I was to write a chapter on grief. And to think that my plan had been to write about my joy and other people’s suffering!

My Church Pastor invited me to an event, ‘Voice of the Apostles,’ “Andrea, you need to come… our friend is going to be there and you need to meet him.” I said I’d pray about it as I was incredibly unwell.

I woke up the next day knowing I was supposed to meet this man, Richard Fothergill, and he’d be the inspiration for one of my book characters, as the Lord had promised me. I knew nothing about Richard, other than he knew my Church Pastors, Nicolas & Kathy Curtain Johnson in South Africa. So I started to write.

Two months later, I would meet Richard. And I was floored. Everything the Lord had told me to write for this chapter on grief started to happen that October 2022…

Discovering joy

In the meantime, through a series of events, I ended up at ministry school. I said to God, “I’m busy dying and you want me in a supernatural ministry school?” The Lord said to me, “During worship [at school] I want you to start painting… Paint the new heart I’m going to give you.” So I started painting. And during this time, I resigned myself to fight for three things:

  1. God is good, no matter what your circumstances are.
  2. I would write as much of these seven books as I could for Jesus!
  3. I would fight for revival, even if I fought for it to the grave

Baptised: like in my book!

Fast forward a year to September 2023, and Richard Fothergill and daughter Anna came to stay at our house. I was having symptoms similar Alzheimer’s (which can sometimes come with chemo). Even the Oncologist said my heart function was going down with the chemo, and brain and heart were being damaged.

One evening at dinner, Richard asked me, “Is there any water that we can swim in?” and I say, “Yes, will you baptise me in it?”

That week, I was baptised in Taylor’s Lake at the University my husband worked at!

I realised I had written about my own baptism: baptised in water by a man I had unknowingly written about, before I’d even met him. In book four, Vicar Breathe (Richard’s character) prays for the main character (loosely me). She goes under water and down to the bottom of the sea to die. She’s screaming, “Don’t leave me Vicar Breathe!” He follows her down to the bottom of the ocean and prays for her. And it was a foreshadowing of a deliverance that was still to come.

A prodigal returns

In January 2024, my healing continued. God spoke to me about attending a church in our community, which he’d asked me to go to 20 years previously. Every bad thing that happened to me as a child was within three miles of this church. “Why do I have to go there?” I’d asked. He said, “If I can change you, and I can revive you, you will testify. You be the revival… You go wherever I take you.”

It was noon on a Wednesday as I joined two other ladies at their prayer meeting. The next thing I knew, I was on my face and knees, repenting… for all the places I should have gone and didn’t… like a prodigal. I heard a mighty sound in the room, and the Lord told me it was an angel of revival that I would see with my spiritual eyes. He said this angel was about to come to this church. It was time to start coming!

During the next prayer meeting, I shook during worship and prayer for about 45 mins. The Lord said, “You stay on the floor and when the sermon is over, stand up in worship.” On standing, I knew my body was healed! He’d given me a new heart! I started laughing and crying, and saw there were bodies everywhere at the altar!

During the next prayer meeting, I shook during worship and prayer for about 45 mins. The Lord said, “You stay on the floor and when the sermon is over, stand up in worship.” On standing, I knew my body was healed! I started laughing and crying, and saw there were bodies everywhere at the altar!

A healed brain

And through another course of events in February, reading Laura Brett’s book, ‘Losing Liberty, Finding Freedom’, my brain was healed!

Every detail of your life, He has scripted for you. You may not know what it means this side of heaven, but it’s all for his glory.

Healing through a book

Despite feeling my body was healed… I hadn’t been able to read anything. The writing came from visions I’d had and I didn’t need to see the words. I’d had to rely on listening to books on Audible.

Richard told me to get Laura Brett’s book, Losing Liberty, Finding Freedom. I would walk past it sitting on the dresser next to my bed. I wanted so badly to read it… and even if I tried, I wouldn’t be able to process it, knowing I wouldn’t remember any of it.

One day, the Lord said, “OK. I’m healing your brain. Read this one!” I contacted Laura and said, “I haven’t been able to read, and Richard told me to read your book, so I’m going to read it.” The Lord told me to give her play by play action as though she was a fly on the wall watching me read. So I did. I started sending her all these wild pictures of me reading. It took me two days to read: I read through the night under a blanket, so I wouldn’t keep my husband awake! I was able to say to her, not only did I love the book, but I’m healed, I can read now!

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