Healing the Waters and Retaking the Land
Hearing news reports from East Palestine, Ohio, recently, I felt overwhelmed during my prayer time. In pleading for the Lord to heal the land, I was reminded of a very familiar verse: 2 Chronicles 7:14. If you are an intercessor, you probably have that verse engraved on your heart. It is our blueprint in praying for the nation.
But as I prayed, my focus shifted to the prior verse, in which the Lord says: “When I shut up the heavens so that there is no rain, or command locusts to devour the land or send a plague among my people …” (2 Chronicles 7:13 NIV).
According to this verse, the Lord withholds His blessings from the land in consequence of our sinfulness. Our wickedness goes deeper than to merely affect us personally, it affects us nationally. The sins of the people directly affect the land, and therefore the land must be healed as well as the people.
The effects of sin in the land are listed in 2 Chronicles 7:13, but the solution is cited in the next verse: “ … if my people, who are called by my name, will humble themselves and pray and seek my face and turn from their wicked ways, then I will hear from heaven, and I will forgive their sin and will heal their land” (2 Chronicles 7:14 NIV).
Our prayer strategy personally, corporately, and nationally involves humility, prayer, and seeking his face — in repentance and in forsaking our wicked ways. The Lord’s response: I will hear, I will forgive, I will heal your land.
In whatever way the Lord chooses to answer that prayer, we can be sure that His response will be to our actions. Prayer is the starting point, but obedience seals the deal.
While praying for East Palestine and the surrounding areas, I felt led to pray for the rivers that have been completely contaminated. As the rivers flow, they spread into surrounding cities where the rivers meet. That flow has been polluted, killing off fish, wildlife, and crops, all of which rely on that lifegiving water. The people are hurting, and creation is crying out.
Prophetic Acts in the Bible
As I prayed, I remembered the story of the prophet Elisha:
Now the men of the city said to Elisha, “Behold, the situation of this city is pleasant, as my lord sees, but the water is bad, and the land is unfruitful.” He said, “Bring me a new bowl, and put salt in it.” So they brought it to him. Then he went to the spring of water and threw salt in it and said, “Thus says the Lord, I have healed this water; from now on neither death nor miscarriage shall come from it.” So the water has been healed to this day, according to the word that Elisha spoke (2 Kings 2:19–22).
Something in this river was leading to unfruitfulness and death. We already know that there’s a connection between sin and land. Elisha cast the salt into the river as an agent of purification, and the waters were healed. The waters that had become barren became fruitful again. The curse was broken.
This is one of many examples in which the Lord commands His servants to complete a prophetic act and thus release His healing power. The Lord can do anything without any help from us, but He often does use us as vessels to carry out His plans.
In Exodus 15:22–25, Moses threw a piece of wood into the bitter waters of Marah, and the waters became sweet enough to drink. In 2 Kings 20:7, the prophet Isaiah applies figs onto Hezekiah’s boils, and the king recovers by the word of the Lord. Jesus had healed many people through His spoken words alone, but one blind man receives a mud paste mixed with the Lord’s saliva and is then told to go wash in the pool of Siloam before he is finally healed (see John 9:1–7).
The Believer’s Authority Over Our Land
I was speaking with an intercessor friend about the Ohio derailment and the resultant pollution of the rivers, and she said something that piqued my interest. In 2015, some Tibetan monks had visited a river in her city. There, they performed some religious rituals and then threw mandalas (a mandala is an intricate geometric display containing millions of grains of sand or crushed stones) into the river. She mentioned that one northern region would regularly experience periodic flooding. The following year, her husband, who is a pastor and an intercessor, began a study of mandalas. He prayed and was led by Holy Spirit to intercede over the river systems so that they would be delivered from the curses connected to the mandalas. The Lord gave him authority over the rivers and turned the curse into a blessing. My friend told me that though some cities in her state have since then experienced flooding, their particular region has not.
Why does this matter? Well, the word mandala means “world in harmony.” One mandala can take days to create, and each is used for guided meditation. They are said to contain a “lesson” that brings enlightenment, and they will often have themes of healing, prayer, and world peace. All of that may sound good, until you dig deeper into the purpose.
“Traditionally, mandalas are created for the purpose of invoking a specific deity and to assist meditators who are being initiated into the meditation on that deity,” said Geshe Nyima Tsering, a spokesman for the monks, as reported in The Atlanta Journal-Constitution.
Prayers of protection and peace, and themes of kindness and compassion are woven within every mandala, but because a deity is centered within each one, the prayers are to foreign gods. Upon completion of the ritual, each mandala is destroyed. The sand is often given in small bags as souvenirs to those who come to view the ceremony. The remaining sand is frequently poured into the rivers, with promises that the act will bring healing. Sound familiar?
Moved by what my friend had said, I researched my own city. To my surprise, in 2017, some Buddhist monks had created a mandala and thrown it into the main river in my city. Further searching revealed how widespread this practice is. Many states either have some type of mandala for the protection of a city, or they have them poured into the rivers.
The Potomac, Hudson, Ohio, and Savannah rivers, to name just a few, have all had mandala ceremonies performed over them.
This means that our waters have been dedicated to other gods under the pretense of healing and protection. Does this not put our land under a curse?
I believe this is a prophetic call to action. We as believers must ask Holy Spirit for strategy in praying within our cities and states. We must continue in the blueprint laid out for us in 2 Chronicles 7:14, but we must also be a people of action. Just as my friend’s husband had sought the Lord to take back the land, I believe we can and must do the same for our own regions, and we must continue to pray for an outpouring of God’s Spirit.
Let There Be Rivers of Revival
In Ezekiel 47:1–12, the prophet has a vision about the river of God flowing from underneath the temple. This is no ordinary river. It rises from ankle depth to knees, waist, and then depths that cannot be measured. It is a river of life that transforms and revives. Barren trees bear fruit again, salty waters are healed, and even sea life is revived. Although this vision involves a river of healing that points to a time yet to come, the river is also symbolic of Holy Spirit. He transforms and revives; He makes the barren places fruitful; and wherever He is, life flourishes.
This river also represents revival, and we desperately need that. In April of 2019, I had a dream that America was in trouble. The country was barren; the land was void and dark; America appeared to have been completely destroyed. All at once, a massive tidal wave swept over the land, and I knew this to be the glory of the Lord over the land. He brought the dead things back to life, and the rivers that had become dried up were then filled with clear, refreshing water. The scorched, cracked earth became lush and green. The dead trees bore fruit and green leaves again. He restored everything He touched, just as in Ezekiel’s vision — wherever the river went, life flourished. Oh Lord, revive us again and heal our land!
Let’s pray together:
Father, we look to You. We are in a time of great needs, but You are a great God. We seek your face. We ask for wisdom. We ask for a divine strategy in taking back our land and everything the Enemy has stolen from us. We recognize that this is a time in which the line has been drawn in the sand — and You are calling us to take a stand. You are calling us to be shining lights in the darkness. You are raising us up to be a city on a hill, which cannot be hidden. Give us the words to speak as we stand in the gap, and the courage to stand forth on the battlefield.
We know that You are with us, Lord, as we pray for You to heal this land. We ask You for signs and wonders in the land, to show forth Your glory in the sight of everyone. We pray that as Your people take back the land the Enemy has stolen, living waters will flow again. We pray that life would thrive where this river flows, bringing comfort, provision, and so much more. We pray that the Spirit of the Lord would come in like a flood: bringing revival, restoration, and renewal — spiritually and physically. In Jesus’ name. Amen.
Will you pray for your own city to be delivered? Share your thoughts and prayers!
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