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Father, thank you for your wonderful plan for mankind.  Thank you that You have created Your Kingdom, that will eventually rule over all the earth. 

The power needed for us live, act, and even pray for our nation is available when we understand the Kingdom of God and walk in it. An understanding and connection to the Kingdom and all its resources is available to us as believers and is crucial for us to sustain ourselves at this time in our troubled nation. I encountered the Kingdom of God and want to share that with you.

I love trees.  I live at the edge of the central valley in California where the hills just begin their upward push to become the majestic Sierra Nevada mountain range.  It can be quite warm here in the summer, with temperatures exceeding 100 degrees for weeks at a time.  In my suburban home, I have planted trees all around the perimeter to shade the house and yard from the intense heat.  When you first plant small trees, it is difficult to imagine how big they will grow.  After 10 to 20 years, they needed trimming.  I called a tree service.  They showed up one day last year.  I was working at home.  Three people showed up—a foreman, a young woman who picked up the cut branches and dragged them out front to the grinder, and Casey, a small wiry fellow who actually climbed into the trees to trim them.

The largest tree is in my front yard, just outside the window upstairs where I work.  I was amazed at Casey’s ability.  He was like a monkey, climbing around in the tree.  He had this keen sense which branches would support his weight.  He climbed high up into the tree to trim it.

I went back outside a few hours later to observe their progress.  While I was walking in my backyard, I found an object laying on the grass.  It looked like a medallion of some sort, about 3 inches in diameter.  I picked it up.  It was part ceramic and part metal, like brass.  On the front were the words “Put on The Full Armor of God.”  There was also a figure of the Roman soldier with his armor and scripture from Ephesians 6.  It was really beautiful.  I picked it up and the young woman came over to look at it.  I asked if it was hers.  She said, “No.”  I put it in my pocket and walked out around the side of my house to ask Casey.  I pulled it out of my pocket and asked “Is this yours?”  He immediately shoved his hands in his pockets and realized it was missing.  He was really surprised and asked me where I found it.  I told him.  He was very thankful that I found it. He told me that he carries it with him every day in his pocket and that he has never lost it before, even climbing around in trees in precarious positions.  He could not figure out how it could just be sitting on the grass in my backyard, as he could not remember doing anything in that vicinity to make it fall out of his pocket. I sensed something when I saw how shook-up he was over the thought of losing it. I asked how he acquired it, but the supervisor came up to us and told him to get back to work, so I went back into the house.

About 30 minutes later, my dog started bugging me for his daily walk, so I got his leash and out we went.  The crew was finishing up so I took a quick look at all the trees and shrubs and was very satisfied with the work they had done.  I headed out on my walk and about ¼ mile into it, I had this strong feeling that I was to go back and talk to Casey.  My first inclination was this is silly, just go on your walk.  So, I continued, but the feeling became stronger that I should go back.  I turned around and headed back home. I started praying and asked God, “Is this really You persuading me to go back?”  The feeling to return became stronger.  I then prayed, “What am I supposed to say to him, he is a total stranger to me?”  I felt God reassure me not to worry about that but to just get home and start a conversation with him.  As I was walking, I felt a little stressed now, as I was worried they would have packed up and gone to the next job. (I also didn’t want to look like a fool.)  But when I got to the house the crew was still cleaning up and putting away all the equipment they used.

I went up to Casey and asked him how he obtained the medallion. He looked at me troubled and said it was a long story.

“After a few years of marriage and the birth of 2 kids, my wife had an affair with my best friend.  She left me and married him.  I was so devastated I lost my job, became depressed, and checked into a mental facility for treatment.  I was discharged, lost my house, and ended up homeless.  I found my way to the Gospel Mission.  I was there for a few months and heard the gospel message. (He did not make it clear whether he accepted the Lord there or had before.)  Part of their rehab program was to take a class where they taught us Ephesians 6.  After graduating from the class, they gave us this medallion that you found.  It’s something to remind me of the battle we are in.  I carry it with me every single day.”

I was deeply touched by his story.  I could see Casey was still struggling with the pain of his wife’s infidelity and marriage to his best friend.  I said, “Casey, I understand your pain.  You were betrayed.  I have been betrayed by a spouse too.  It is the most devastating event I have ever endured.”  I then put my hand around an imaginary knife and placed the blade end of it over my heart and spoke these words, “It’s like a dagger being thrust into your heart”!  He looked at me startled; tears came quickly.  He took his hand around the imaginary knife handle, pulled it away from me, and put to his chest and said, “Six months ago I took my hunting knife and got the tip about 1/8 in. into my chest between two ribs just over my heart.  I was about to thrust it in and end my life, and I heard an audible voice say “stop.”  I knew it was God.

We both stood there looking at each other.  Tears were flowing down his face.  He looked at me and said “God is here right now with us; do you sense Him?”  I agreed, awestruck by the accuracy of the words I spoke without even knowing it.  It was a surreal moment.  It was like a portal opened up and the presence of God was so tangible.  The words spoken were beyond coincidence, and we both knew it.

I asked, “Casey, are you still struggling with suicidal thoughts?”  He cried and said yes, that at times he was tormented by it.  I silently asked God what I should say.  I then knew that I was to give him the tools needed to resist this enemy that was tormenting him and encourage him. I shared with him that he has the power over the enemy that works through his mind to torment him. I prayed for him about his current situation and rebuked that spirit of suicide.  I told him that if it should come back and torment him, to take authority over it and rebuke it.  Then, walk away from it.  Continue to do this and over time it will not bother you anymore.  For He that lives in you is greater than he that lives in the world. We also talked about forgiveness. I told him to stay faithful to God and in time He will restore all that you have lost.

Time was short as the crew had loaded all the tools into their truck.  Casey thanked me for reaching out to him. We hugged, and felt a kinship in our experience with God himself. I told him, “Whenever you feel discouraged, remember this day. God loves you so much He set up this meeting and included Himself.  He is real and close to you always.” He nodded and departed.

I write this encounter as just a brief glimpse into the Kingdom of God and how it operates in a believer’s life.  The one thing that impressed me was that the only thing I “did” was be available and possibly risk looking like a fool.  I simply wanted to obey God.  All the work was done by God.  He arranged our meeting with the medallion.  Casey was dumbfounded how he could have lost it.  He truly could not explain it.  Secondly, a word was spoken from God concerning the dagger in the heart.  When those words were spoken, it’s like it opened up a portal from the heavenlies to bring the Spirit to us. That is the only way I know how to describe it.  I had no idea what those words would mean to Casey.  After I spoke and prayed, I knew exactly what to say with confidence.  This was not a typical day for me.  I am still learning about the Kingdom and how to walk in it.  I have much to learn.

This encounter taught me something about my relationship with God.  As an Intercessor, at times I feel like I must pray for the nation because it’s going downhill so fast.  I must do something to stop it! I believe Jesus says My burden is light, because when in right relationship with Him and an understanding of the Kingdom of God, He works through us to actually further His Kingdom into the world.  He does it through His power, not mine.  That is why, I believe Paul says in 1 Corinthians 4:20, For the kingdom of God is not in words, but in power.   In this experience, the power of God was overwhelming.  It was like I was a part of it, but also I had to get out of the way. Like God was using me but also saying, “Get out of the way, Mike, and let Me minister.” My role was simply to bring the Kingdom to Casey.  I am still learning how to do this as an Intercessor when praying for the nation.

As I read the Bible, the more I see that the main message of Jesus to the world was to bring the Kingdom of God to earth.  The Kingdom is here now.  He said, “Seek first the Kingdom.”  This experience with  Casey showed me why I should keep seeking it to understand it and how it works in my life.  As I seek it, the more God opens it up to me, little by little.  The Kingdom is experiential, it is all about interacting with God on a personal level.  It is not about establishing a religion to practice, its about establishing a living relationship with God himself.  The Kingdom of God on earth today is evidence of the incredible love He has for us.  He has created this Kingdom for us to walk into and commune with Him. The appropriation of the sacrifice of Christ on the Cross is the key that opens the door to the Kingdom.  To enter the Kingdom, you must be born again, John 3:3.  Our efforts are to seek it and learn to walk into it.  I believe the knowledge of the Kingdom, what it is and what it means to us, is key to doing anything effective for God, whether its intercession or any other type of ministry.  We must prioritize it over everything else to find it and walk in it.  When we walk in it, as Jesus says, my burden is light.

Father, thank you for your wonderful plan for mankind.  Thank you that You have created Your Kingdom that will eventually rule over all the earth.  All other earthly kingdoms will perish, but Yours will prevail. I pray You lead us all to discover Your Kingdom and teach us how to walk in it every day.  Give us understanding in praying for our nation.  Show us how to unleash Your power in our prayers.  Transform our minds through the washing of the word to hear Your Spirit guide us to be more effective in prayer.

How were you encouraged by this article? Let us know in the comments below!

Michael Guidera is an IFA intercessor, retired from a 35 year career developing implantable medical devices that have brought help and relief to thousands of people.

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  1. wow amazing testimony thanks for sharing michael this speaks to so many of us. thank you for your obedience and humbleness unto the lord. sometimes i dont know how to pray and everything going around us can be overwhelming. but god is Preeminence over all things… what an encouraging and timely word for me. May the lord continue to bless you and continue to use you. Our father is faithful and he has equipped. i have so much to say amazing word.

    Amen! 17
  2. There are no words that I would consider sufficient to comment on this
    truly wonderful, God-proclaiming article. I am so thankful for you and
    your life that is a credit to our Lord and Savior.
    Just think, when you were planting trees for shade, God was planning
    to use you to help Casey!!!
    Never enough praise is my motto!
    Thank you so much, Michael!

    Amen! 24
    1. Thank you Marty, am overwhelmed by your kind words and those of the other intercessors. I believe God is preparing all of us for a greater outpouring of His Spirit and we will see His hand in our everyday lives.

      Amen! 7
  3. WOW. Praise God for your vulnerability through this article and in this man’s life and Thank you Lord for your love and intervention in Casey’s life. As he spends time above in the trees, please give him your perspective from above so that he can continually overcome the lies of the enemy with your truth and authority. This story brings the song “Champion” by Beckah Shae to mind. Her overcoming testimony is also quite powerful.

    Amen! 17
    1. Karen,
      Thank you for inclusion of Beckah Shae’s “Champion.” It prompted me to watch “Awake” also, which i forwarded to our Worship Team, even though it is more of GOD’s call to the church than worship. Thank you, again.

      Amen! 3
  4. I wrote a book on this subject. I only published it on face book a couple of pages at a time (Man ’21 thru Mar ’21. I titled it “The Other TWILIGHT Zone”. “The Kingdom of God and the Battles”. My first book didn’t circulate as expected, so I haven’t decided what vehicle to use for this one. For years now I have felt that so many Christians don’t even have a basic idea about the Power that is available to them!
    Thanks for imitating the discussion!

    Amen! 13
  5. Thank you for this wonderful story and reminder of how we are to walk in obedience to Christ every day. It is vital and I pray every day that I would be lead by Holy Spirit to encourage or speak to someone. You spoke life into Casey. God set up the appointment and you were willing. You exemplified an open obedient heart. Thank you for that reminder. May God bless you as He continues to use you to glorify His amazing kingdom here on earth. God bless you🙏🏻

    Amen! 41
  6. Love this, Michael. This was a teachable story and serves as an inspiration for us intercessors. Your Godly obedience led to a beautiful Spirit-led interaction between both of you.

    May we all be willing vessels for God in whatever He wants. Then, as you stated, we will be learning more about the Kingdom of God and God Himself.
    Thank you for this well-written piece and your prayer. I will print and keep this nearby. May we continually seek His face and know Him better.

    Amen! 40
  7. THANK YOU, Michael, for sharing this! “Coincidentally,” I have been experimenting with following Holy Spirit into exactly these kinds of encounters for some time now. Some lessons learned:
    Fear always has to be overcome. This is usually the biggest barrier for me. Usually it’s about reputation, but sometimes loss of job or even physical safety. Trusting God with the consequences is where I must pivot to get past fear and be able to act.
    Second, none of these encounters is ever the same. They happen with ALL SORTS of people; evidently Father really DOES love all of them! My inner life, then, must be conditioned around constant listening, deep humility, and profound repentance. Repentance is the necessary clearing of all the junk – and it apparently goes pretty deep. Humility has to do with being leadable and recognizing my own personal powerlessness to contribute ANYTHING to this encounter.
    Finally, the Call is to “make disciples.” I personally make a point to not collect personal information; sometimes I don’t even have a first name. I do, however, have business cards (available online for “free”) with my contact info but NOT my address. I give these to the folks I talk to as a means of following through. I make clear to members of the opposite gender that my spouse is also involved in ongoing conversations.

    Amen! 39
    1. Bless you John for your desire to allow yourself to be led by the Holy Spirit. As we learn we may make mistakes, but it is all part of the learning process. I encourage you to continue and pray that your understanding of your partnership with God will grow. It’s like learning to play an instrument and requires commitment and practice.

      Amen! 13
  8. I was so encouraged by this article. It reminded of a time when my mom had passed. I was struggling with hee death. A few months after her passing I was in church one morning when I felt this sense of urgency from God. It wouldn’t leave. I asked the Lord what it was about. I was to stop at the mall on my way home At first I thought, this can’t be from God and I dismissed it. After church, I got into my car to head for home and once again, I’m feeling this sense of urgency. I gave in and drove to the mall. Long story short. God lead me to talk with three different people in this bookstore. The whole time I’m thinking he was
    using me to lead someone to the Lord. Well, that didn’t happen. I walked out of the bookstore sad and confused. I said, Lord, what was that about? He said, it was your obedience to Me. I hurried to my car and the tears began to roll down my face. I can’t say that anything liked that happened again, but it did open my eyes to see what a needy world we live in and to be the hands and feet of Jesus when we are called to do so!!

    Amen! 42
    1. God bless you Sheri. We are all earning through practice. As our love and desire to know Him grows, I believe we learn to “walk” in the Spirit.

      Amen! 10
    2. Very quickly, I just want to say that it is the most important thing
      that we have to learn – how to wait on God.
      He will be very assertive in teaching us, if we want to know how to
      truly wait on Him.
      The secret to it is “Obedience”. Your relating your disappointment
      that after 3 people at the bookstore and no “religious” context was
      noted by you and God saying that it was your obedience to Him is being
      repeated in the Body of Christ now. We have to hear His voice!!!
      I thank God for your humility and open attitude to Him. You can be
      sure that He will know you are someone He can use for His kingdom.
      Thank you for sharing this with us. And thank You, Lord, for teaching us.

      Amen! 13
  9. Thank you for this beautiful message. I have experienced this same kind of devastation. I also have been found by the love of God and His saving grace for my life. And still to this day hearing this episode being repeated brings me back to those exact moments and tears just pouring down my face. I know the Lord filled me with deep compassion for this man and any and all afflicted people. I have been blessed beyond measure. Thank you.

    Amen! 36
  10. It is so easy to become discouraged by the onslaught of evil forces overwhelming our country right now. I struggle some days not to despair over what kind of world my children are to inherit. This article is a wonderful reminder that we must listen for God’s guidance and follow him.

    Amen! 48
    1. For us to walk in the Kingdom requires a transformation of our soul to allow the Holy Spirit to guide us. It doesn’t happen naturally. It requires a disciplined life. I believe seeking the Kingdom leads us into a desire to be disciplined and shows the purpose of it. We also see God’s grace in action in our lives which motivates us even more to want to know Him.

      Amen! 36
      1. Yes, indeed. Love is more a matter of discipline/obedience rather than emotions or feelings. This is an excellent article and response to Ms McMichael. Thank you so much for sharing.

        Amen! 2
  11. Excellent article! Recently, while meditating through Matthew’s Gospel, I was especially moved by Jesus’ words in 13:24 – 52. I believe we are “instructed concerning the Kingdom” that we “may proclaim the praises of Him.”(IPt2:9)

    Amen! 26
  12. This is a very encouraging and inspiring article! Thank you so much! I am becoming more emboldened to step out and follow the Holy Spirit lead in things like this. YES! It’s about expanding His Kingdom in the earth!! By touching another soul, sharing and encouraging one another!

    Amen! 52
  13. Simply beautiful! I was so amazed how God was so present but isn’t that just like Him. We serve a loving God Who is so relational. He inserts Himself in our everyday life. Thank You Jesus.

    Amen! 61

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