I Prayed have prayed
Father, I thank You for the stretching and shaking that You are doing among the church.

There’s a famous house in Lubbock, Texas that is totally made of steel. It’s for sale right now, if you have a million and half bucks lying around. It’s almost indestructible…

So let’s talk about remodeling a home. Rather, demolition. I loved the demolition part of “Extreme Home Makeover, Home Edition” as much as I did the reveal. How fun would it be to take a sledgehammer and knock down the ugly and outdated—not to mention a powerful way to vent?

Lately, the word deconstruction has become quite popular among the church. Well, popular for some. It’s an Achilles heel to others. Me? I’m one of the ones being deconstructed. Only I prefer to call it demolition.

Demolition is messy, expensive, emotional, and annoying because it takes a very long time. It disrupts every facet of daily life. In renovation, one project leads to another and another and one regrets even getting started. Sometimes you even lose the vision of the pretty new structure you planned. One can’t trust every contractor or connection. You are vulnerable and don’t want to be taken advantage of. On top of that some friends or family members say it’s not worth all the trouble and expense.

Sometimes there are blessings in the demolition process: One re-evaluates priorities, maybe downsizes a little, or upgrades something they didn’t expect. Sometimes faulty wiring or dangerous things like termites or mold reveal themselves; fixing them is an unexpected gift.

My demolition, or deconstruction started with a Bible Study at my church: “Warrior Put Your Boots On” by Lisa Whittle. Then like many, during COVID, I had questions about my church shutting its doors. There were questions about so many things. Somehow, I found the Return simulcast with Johnathan Cahn, signed up for a prayer messaging board, which led me to Global Family Prayer 24/7, a small intercessors group from Pennsylvania, Ten Days of Prayer, Intercessors for America, and Give Him 15 with Dutch Sheets. I signed up for the Prayer Warriors group at church, where I met a friend. We attended Pray in the Heart of Texas and decided to lead 10 Days of Prayer Lubbock. I learned all about the Texas Apostolic Prayer network. This all happened in a 4-year span.

The demolition was messy and overwhelming. Much of the time I felt like I was taking a graduate course, immersing myself in a foreign country, or drinking from a fire hydrant. I had so many questions. I found pests, decay, and a few areas of weakness in my structure.

But at the same time, I was doing my normal life; attending my church but feeling out of sorts there. Quickly, I learned not to discuss my experiences or ask questions.

Skepticism, confusion and outright fear were typical responses to my sharing.

My friends were changing. My interests were changing and my husband was confused. I became close to my intercessor friends and for the first time in my life I understood real vulnerability and accountability. None of this was my doing. It was the Holy Spirit drawing me into a deeper relationship. He made the connections and determined the lesson plan.

In the process I navigated all types of emotion: Elation, disappointment, outright anger, grief, joy, peace, and frustration. I discovered that I was growing up. I could no longer be naive and ignorant. Staying in the “safe, comfortable” status quo was no longer acceptable to me. True, I had to get past feelings of victimhood and blaming others. Some of the walls that came down were really thick, like steel. Subsequently my pride was challenged because after all, wasn’t I becoming a superior Christian?

And I was learning forgiveness and grace. After all, the structure I had in the first place really had good bones. It was part of my identity. The teaching was phenomenal, as was the discipleship from childhood through adulthood. I was prepared for ministry. The fellowship was sweet and the environment was safe, at least in my experience. Worship was deliberate, except for revival and youth camp.

The one thing missing however, was the Power, the overwhelming Presence. All my life I have struggled with anxiety that I couldn’t quite shake, and church had become a form of godliness but without power. When there was a move of the Spirit they would say “God moved.” How does one go to church on Pentecost Sunday, and Pentecost and the Holy Spirit is not even mentioned?

So, part of the renovation was actual restoration. The Holy Spirit drew me back to Him, back to the encounter of passion and calling I first received when I was 16, at youth camp.  It wasn’t just an emotional experience. Actually I was filled with the Spirit, but did not know it at the time. It was accompanied by intense hunger for discipleship and launchpad for ministry. And now, in these last three years, through Spirit -filled intercessors, I have learned to soak and rest in the Presence of God.  I have witnessed miracles I would have been skeptical of previously. I have surrendered old paradigms and allowed prophecy to be spoken over me. Rather than doing the “right’ thing, I am just being, being a grown daughter of a King instead of an adult child of God.

If I could name my new home, it would be “The House of Presence.” This place, this new home, is the real deal. And I’m actually willing for more deconstruction to occur. The end result is beautiful, strong, full of power and joy. I don’t want to just be a steel house standing on a hill with a great presence, but no Presence.

Father, I thank you for the stretching and shaking that You are doing among the church. In Proverbs 3:12 it states that a father disciplines those he loves, and Abba you are such a good Father to us. You stated that You wanted no gods before You, hence the actual demolition that needs to happen is complete destruction of pride, idols, and strongholds in our lives. It’s a beautiful renovation. Because we are your Tabernacle, Your House of Prayer, a City on a Hill– where others are healed, discipled, empowered, and sent. May we be worthy of your In-dwelling. In Yeshua’s name, Amen.

Does this story resonate with you? Please share in the comments.

Wenona Andress is an IFA intercessor. Photo Credit:  ewg3D from Getty Images Signature on Canva Pro.

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Lauran Collins
February 29, 2024

Thank you for mentioning our steel house in Lubbock as we pray for reconstruction of homes and saving livestock in the Panhandle after the fires this week.

Bridgett Jabour
February 26, 2024

Yesssss. 🔥🔥🔥

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Charlene
February 26, 2024

Wow! This describes my life to a T. I was in a “Bible-believing” church for 20+ years and always knew “something” or “Someone” was missing! The Lord led me also through “The Return” in 2020, to see and hear things I had been searching for my whole life! I have been in a Holy Spirit, Revival seeking, Intercessory Prayer-leading church for the last year and a half and it has been life-changing…literally! My identity with Christ has been completely overturned! Learning to have an intimate relationship with the Father is a journey I would not have wanted to miss before entering into heaven. ~ Wonderful article! I imagine there are thousands with similar testimonies!

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Myrna Weaver
February 26, 2024

Beautifully written, Wenona! Many are going through the demolition/reconstruction phase. God is tearing down false identities and rebuilding true identities of the people inside the church as well as those outside of the church. He loves us too much to let us stay trapped. He needs the members of the true body of Christ who know who they are to step up and advance His Kingdom! We are to rule and reign with Him in love and power. Blessings!

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Karen Stavrinakis
February 26, 2024

Hi Wenona, this so resonates with me! So true, I feel God reconstructing me as well…chipping away the areas that need to go and teaching me such a better more exciting way of living. He is the good, good Father…

Then you will call on Me and come and pray to Me, and I will listen to you. You will seek Me and find Me when you seek Me with all your heart.
Jeremiah 29:12-13

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Sheri
February 25, 2024

Praise GOD for the divine connection He made between our lives. As your loved ones step into the flow of Holy Spirit with you, we know the reconstruction is becoming easier, and it will eventually excelerate. Buckle up! This House of Presence is a glorious GOD structure that will withstand the wind and water! The reconstruction of our house is never easy nor cheap, but it is totally worth it all. 🙌🔥❤️

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Bill Demlow
February 25, 2024

Thank you, Wenona. As a long term Christ followers, I have also felt the demolition as God draws me. In the process, He reveals things that need to be demolished in my life to allow me to be conformed more to Jesus. I am re-reading “Escape from Christendom” by Robert Burnell and am being challenged to be fully committed to seeking the City of God and not settling for anything less than His Presence. Bring it on, Lord!

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