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Generational Prayers

4 Things to Know about Generational Healing

Generational healing prayers are among my favorites. Why? Because I have seen such powerful changes through these prayers.

Consider this: Because of the power of Christ, you have the ability today to stand in for entire generations of your family and repent for generational sin. God can bring redemption and realignment to your family line, so your entire family can begin to walk in the calling and blessings God has given to you.

That's pretty powerful. 

Here are 5 helpful things to know about generational healing:

1. Numbers 14:18 tells us how generational curses pass through the family line. This verse also tells us of God's love and mercy. He wants us to be healed and He has made provision for our healing through Christ. Read Isaiah 61 about how Jesus has come to set the captives free.

Generational sin opens the door to these generational curses. They pass for 4 generations (10 generations for sexual sin – see Deuteronomy 23:2). This passing of the curse to 4 generations actually shows God's restraint (He could have made them pass longer). But if nobody repents, the sin keeps moving down the family line, becoming generational iniquity. Iniquity means a propensity to bend. It means the family has an inherited tendency toward that sin.

2. The Bible tells us to "bind the strongman" (Matthew 12:29, Mark 3:27, Luke 11:22). The strongman is the enemy who has plundered the generational blessings of each family. Read all of Luke 11 for insight into how the enemy plunders a family and how he is overturned by Christ. When we identify the strongman (e.g., addiction, pride, fear, sexual sin, violence, jealousy) and repent on behalf of the generations of our family, we invite Jesus in to set us free.

3. Generational sin is based in repentance. Through Christ, we have the ability to humble ourselves and choose to repent for the sin that has brought curses to our family. We forgive our ancestors who opened those doors to generational sin. We repent of the ways we personally have engaged in that sin. Then we stand in restitutional repentance on behalf of our entire family line. We ask God to restore the generational blessings He intends for our family. 

Often, we can identify those blessings because they are the direct opposite of the generational sin we have experienced. A family mired in generational fear has a blessing of power, love, and sound mind (2 Timothy 1:7). A family cursed with generational violence has a generational blessing of peace (Luke 8:26-39). A family that has been ripped apart over the generations by jealousy, strife, and contention is called to a generational blessing of love (1 Corinthians 13:4). The enemy tries to steal our gifts and blessings. Where he strikes us is the exact opposite of who we and the generations of our family are really supposed to be.

4. With generational repentance, the enemy will be silenced. He will no longer have such a strong hold on your family to compel each person into those generational curses. This doesn't mean the enemy will stop trying to trip people up. John 10:10 tells us he will continue to try and thwart God's plan for our lives. However, with generational repentance, he doesn't have the rights and the degree of force he had before. It gives people in your family a chance to come to their senses and hear the truth from Jesus. The generational truth becomes louder than the lies. 

Because of free will, family members may continue to choose to engage in a particular sinful behavior. The doors to sin that are open in a person's heart are complex. Jesus is the only one who can show each person how to heal and turn from those sins. But the difference, after generational repentance, is that the enemy won't have the same generational power as before to compel that behavior. I liken it to Jesus removing a megaphone from the enemy's hands.

This is where your prayers of intercession become so important. If a family member continues to follow in the old ways of the generational curse, you can intercede from a place of healing, truth, and blessing. You can't change that person's heart – only that person can do that, because of free will. However, you can pray for the Holy Spirit to help that person hear truth: that they are not a prisoner of fear, but rather they walk in power, love, and sound mind (2 Timothy 1:7); that they are not an addict, but rather they are adopted by God (Romans 8:15); that they are not a victim of generational strife and jealousy, but rather they walk in God's love (1 Corinthians 13:4).

As you walk in your generational healing, and take ground from the enemy (Ephesians 6:13), you will be inviting the Holy Spirit to work more deeply in your family line. Your prayers of generational repentance, your generational healing, and the ways you choose to walk this out with Christ will have a powerful effect on your whole family.

Today is a great day to repent on behalf of yourself and the generations of your family. It's a great day to step into God's generational blessings.

Thank You, Jesus, for healing us. 

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Janet Eriksson is a missionary of prayer in Dahlonega, Georgia and founder/coordinator of the Hometown Prayer Mission. She also volunteers with The Center for Inner Healing. She would love to hear from you at hometownprayer.org.

Have You Consecrated Your Land?

Sunday was a beautiful day out in the countryside as I participated in the consecration of a friend's pasture where her animals graze.

I've enjoyed many such land consecrations and they are always amazing. Praying in repentance for ungodly acts that have taken place on the land … inviting God's forgiveness and healing … pouring elements into the land that represent healing and new life … and inviting the Holy Spirit to reclaim the land and dwell in it … what a wonderful experience.

We learn from Deuteronomy 29:27 and Jeremiah 23:10 that curses pass with the land. But Jeremiah 31 gives us the good news of God's plan to restore the land and His people. We know God's restoration comes through Jesus Christ. When we accept Jesus as our Lord and Savior, our hearts our transformed, and His Holy Spirit comes to live within us. When we invite His power of healing and restoration to our land, we invite the Holy Spirit to dwell in the land that surrounds us.

Land consecration must be done by the owners of the land, as they have the authority to repent on behalf of sins in the land and invite the Holy Spirit to move in. When you rent land, you have legal rights to the space you are renting, so you can consecrate your rented land. You will have greater authority if you join with the owner of the land in consecrating the entire land, as I've had the privilege to do at several locations I've rented.

It is amazing to feel the presence of the Holy Spirit bubble up in the land during a consecration. The peace that settles on the land after the consecration is amazing.

As with all practices of prayer, there is no formula for praying to cleanse and consecrate the land. Ask God to reveal to you what you should do in consecrating your land – to reveal any Bible verses you should pray, songs to sing in praise and worship, elements to pour on the land, etc.

I've participated in consecrations where we've poured salt for covenant and cleansing (Leviticus 2:23; 2 Chronicles 13:4-5; 2 Kings 2:19-22; Exodus 30:34-35), wine for new covenant (Luke 22:20), grain for new life (John 12:24; Jeremiah 31:12), and oil to represent the presence of the Holy Spirit (Isaiah 61:1; Acts 10:38). Sometimes we've taken communion, opened and closed with worship, and sometimes planted a Bible in the center of the property.

Always, a land consecration should include repentance for sins that have taken place on the land, and any ways we have participated in those sins. Remember that participation might be spiritual more than literal. If murder has taken place on the land, ask the Lord if you have participated with murder of thought and tongue (Matthew 5:21-22; 1 John 3:15). If you don't know what sins have taken place on your land historically, that is okay. God knows what they are. Ask Him, and He will tell you. He will lead your prayers of repentance.

Remember too: When we bind up sin, we need to loose the Holy Spirit in its place (Matthew 18:18; Luke 11:24-26). So after you repent for the sins that have taken place on your land, invite the Holy Spirit to fill in all those places with His presence and to come and dwell on and in your land (Revelation 21:3).

Land consecration is such a wonderful gift to us from God – and it can also be our gift back to Him. I would love to see more land consecrated in our communities. Consecrating our land changes the atmosphere for the better. We will feel such a difference!

Have you consecrated your land? I would love for you to share with us in the comment section what your consecration was like, and the difference you've experienced since then.

***

Janet Eriksson is a missionary of prayer in Dahlonega, Georgia and founder/coordinator of the Hometown Prayer Mission. She also volunteers with The Center for Inner Healing. She would love to hear from you at hometownprayer.org.

The Praying Family – Part 1

“Mommy, I want to pray.”

Katie’s mom turned to look at her for a long moment. The rice on the stove boiled over.

“Okay,” her mom said slowly. She set down the spoon and lowered the flame. “Where did this come from?”

“From VBS! We learned that God likes us to pray, because it means we talk to Him.” She grinned. “He likes when we talk to Him. Plus, when we pray, things get better.” She tilted her head as she looked up at her mom. “Don’t we need things to get better.”

Mom’s lips tightened like they always did when she was trying not to cry. “We sure do.”

“So let’s pray!”

Katie held out her hands for her mom to hold onto, which seemed to surprise her mom even more. Mom pulled up a kitchen chair and sat. She took hold of Katie’s hands.

Silence.

“Do … you want to pray, Katie?”

Katie nodded.

“Dear God. We think you’re really great. And we need help. Love, Katie and Mom.”

Her mom smiled but she was crying.

“Do we need to pray anything else, Katie?”

“That’s pretty much it. I learned that whatever we say, He knows what to do.”

The front door flew open, slamming into the wall. Katie jumped, as always, and Mom shook her head. Justine was home.

Katie smiled as her older sister stomped into the kitchen. 

“What are you guys doing?”

“We’re praying.” Katie tried to stand taller. 

Justine’s face softened. Her voice dropped to a whisper. “You are?”

“Yes.”

Justine nodded, which puzzled Katie.

“Awesome. Did you pray for our family?”

“Of course!” Katie said. “We asked God to help.”

“I mean the whole family. Like, everyone in our family tree?”

“Our what?”

Justine looked from Katie to their mom. “We learned at Youth that if we pray for our whole family tree, God can bless everyone. It’s called generational blessings. They get blocked a lot, like a river that’s got a dam across it. When we pray, God breaks the dam.”

“Cool!” Katie said.

Their mom looked at Justine for a long time.

“Justine … have you been praying for our family tree?”

She lowered her head and nodded.

Katie felt covered with chilly bumps. “I want to learn how.”

Justine shrugged. “We just ask God to bless our family tree.”

Katie reached out her hands again, this time one for Mom and one for Justine. She smiled when they took hold of her hands. 

“Dear God,” Katie said, “thank you for helping us already. Help our family, and God bless our family tree.”

“Amen,” Justine and Mom said together.

“Now,” Mom said, “who wants some burned rice?”

“I do!” Katie said. “It’s going to be the best meal ever.”

Katie grinned as Justine walked to the stove to help their mom, something she almost never did.

***
How many lives did God bless through this one little family’s prayers? What do you think might have happened?

When we pray as a family, or pray for our family, including the generations of our family line, amazing things start to happen, in the lives of people you have never met. All it takes is to start asking God to help. He knows how to do the rest.

Someone talked to them

I'm continuing to research my ancestors. Tonight I added a few records and one was a census ledger listing the name of a great uncle I never met or even knew about, along with his wife. They lived in Alabama, along with much of the rest of my family at that time. There's something amazing about seeing their names written on a ledger. Someone was sitting there, talking to them, taking down their information. It makes them seem real to me.

Of course, I know they were real. But until now, as I pray through generational healing, to break curses, to loose blessings, when I think of my ancestors, it's more of an idea than a recognition of real people. Some people I know about, or I've long heard about from family members. They are clear in my mind, even if I don't know much about them or their lives. But the others have always been rather nebulous … as I would fully expect to be myself, if uncovered some day by a distant descendent.

But something about seeing their names on the ledger … A clearer image comes to mind. Just a person, sitting there, talking to someone who jots down their information. Waiting to get this meeting over with so they can get on with their day. Loving their family. Working hard. Uncertain about some things in life; very certain about others. Dreaming of the future … or worrying about the future. Wondering what the next day will bring. Taking time in the evening to reflect. Maybe talking to God?

I don't know how these individuals lived their lives. But now I know their names. And I've seen a ledger where another person – just as real as they were – wrote their names. There's a connection. I can think about them. I can wonder what their lives were like. I can thank God for them. And I can pray that their legacy, and the blessings God poured into them every day of their lives will continue to flow through my family line, to all those who were meant to receive and walk in these blessings, even today.

Thanks, God.

***

Janet Eriksson is a missionary of prayer in Dahlonega, Georgia and founder/coordinator of the Hometown Prayer Mission. She also volunteers with The Center for Inner Healing. She would love to hear from you at hometownprayer.org.

They’re my family too

I've been depriving myself all these years. I have an entire family line that I've never recognized as my family.

My mom's dad left when she was two and her brother was a baby. She never forgave him. All I ever knew growing up was that we didn't speak about him, as if he didn't exist. 

As I got into my late teenage years and wanted to know more of my roots, I'd hint around to her that I was interested in a few details. She offered me one or two thoughts, and that was it. I didn't realize at the time how painful it was for her to go there, and how she had blocked that part of her memory.

When my uncle, her brother, began to do family research, she made it clear to him that she was not interested in hearing the results. A cousin sent a batch of old photos, many of which included my mom's childhood visits, once a year, to see her dad. I stared at them for hours, amazed to put a face to this man we didn't talk about, to see this whole side of my mom's childhood that I knew nothing about, and wanting to ask and know more. She asked if I would please send the pictures to my uncle, for his research, and not let her see them again. I regret now that I didn't keep one or two photos for myself, but I honored her wish and got them out of our house.

I think from that point on, and especially as I grew older and discovered what it was like to have a husband walk out on a marriage (my own), I fell into line with my mom's thinking of just letting the past be the past.

But today, as I go through Christian inner healing, I'm beginning to recognize how much I've blocked out a whole side of my family line. I need to forgive … my mom, for closing him out; my granddad for leaving his family; and myself (to repent and forgive) for buying into the family lie of "we don't talk about him." I have a granddad I never knew. And he has a whole family of siblings, parents, grandparents, and so many others from whom I'm descended, that I know nothing about. 

I'm doing some research to learn what I can. I've missed out on a lot. I understand why, but it's okay for that to change now. I want to know the generational blessings God has poured into this unknown side of my family. I want to know who these folks were, and to bless them in turn, to thank God for them. 

It wasn't until I began my ancestral research that I realiized the true extent of this blockage. Ancestry.com produced a report from my family input that identified this man as "Your grandfather." I had never thought of him as my grandfather; merely as "the man we don't talk about." That really hit home, seeing him connected with me in such a close way. Then I realized that through him, I also have a great grandfather and great grandmother, cousins, aunts and uncles. I'm as much desended from them as from the folks on the others sides of my family.

Healing and restoration means accepting that, and not only accepting, but also embracing. I choose to embrace the family God has given me. And I will be blessed by anything God desires to reveal so that I can come to know these folks more.

 

***

Janet Eriksson is a missionary of prayer in Dahlonega, Georgia and founder/coordinator of the Hometown Prayer Mission. She also volunteers with The Center for Inner Healing. She would love to hear from you at hometownprayer.org.

God stopped the curse

In researching my dad's side of the family tree, I discovered my 2nd great grandfather was a Civil War soldier. I never knew that.

In prayer ministry and in traveling around the Southeast, I've experienced visions of pain and fire and death. At the leading of Christ, I've prayed to close the generational doors. I had no idea these things came from the pain of one man during the Civil War. Wow.

He died early – not in battle, but I can only imagine the pain that affected his life every day after the war. His son died prematurely too, as did his son's kids, and my dad … and I almost did as well.

A generational curse goes to the 4th generation (Exodus 20:5), and can recycle from there if it's not stopped. The longer a curse stays with the family, the more likely the enemy will come and dwell. The only one who can stop a generational curse is Jesus Christ. No one else has that power.

Thanks to the power of Christ, the curse stopped with me, and I lived to give the testimony.

You might ask why did the curse have to travel this far to be stopped? Why me? Those are certainly questions God can handle. And I've asked them. Here's what I believe He showed me. The real question is not, "Why did it take so long?" but rather, "God, what were You doing during this time? What angels were You sending, what mountains were You moving, what demons were You slaying in order to bring healing before it wiped out the family line completely?" It's not "too late" that the curse came all the way to the 4th generation. It's a miracle that He stopped it then. That He led me in prayer in time for me NOT to die prematurely. And the curse is broken.

This curse of premature death wasn't just on my dad's side. It was on my mom's side too. I knew about that, and had dealt with it in prayer. But then I discovered dad's side. That's a double-bind from the enemy. It had a stranglehold on my life until I invited Christ to break the power of the curse  – not just for me but for the generations of my family to live in freedom and full life.

Here's what the curse on my dad's side looked like: 

2nd Great Grandfather

Fought in Civil War age 42-45

Died age 63

His Son

Died age 46 (killed in a freak accident by a wild hog; come on, that's just weird)

3 of Son’s Children

Died age 4, age 22, age 26

My Dad

Died age 66

Janet – Cancer age 42 – Four generations – THANK GOD FOR JESUS!!!

If you'd like to learn more about how the Lord intervened to break the curse and heal me from cancer, my book I Choose Life tells the story. Go God!!!

 

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Janet Eriksson is a missionary of prayer in Dahlonega, Georgia and founder/coordinator of the Hometown Prayer Mission. She also volunteers with The Center for Inner Healing. She would love to hear from you at hometownprayer.org.

Got family stories? Someone wants to know

I’ve always loved history. In high school, I covered the walls of my bedroom with historical maps. It wasn’t about the dates, the who-did-what-and-where. It was about the people – the way they lived, their conversations, and the settings where their daily lives played out. When I visit an historical house, I usually spend most of my time gazing out the window, wondering how that scene might have appeared to the person who lived there, wanting to see the world through their eyes. What were their thoughts? Their greatest fears? Their hopes?

As I search through digital archives to find any indication of where my ancestors lived or worked, who they married and how many kids they had, I wish for so much more. I wish for stories. How did a husband and wife meet? What did they tell their children before bedtime each night? What was the conversation like around the dinner table?

I miss not knowing this.

The family I grew up in wasn’t much for passing along stories, and I was born a generation after most everyone in my horizontal line (my parents were old enough to be my grandparents, my sister old enough to be my mom, etc.). I don’t blame anyone – not anymore. God knows I did, for quite a while, but I’ve let that go as He’s ministered to the wounds of my heart.

But I sure wish I knew the stories.

Maybe I’ll find some, somewhere. But how I’d love to immerse myself, spend a day in the life.

I urge you to share what stories you know about your family. Write them down; record them; tell them. Make sure whatever you know gets passed along or documented somewhere, for someone to find who may be searching, wanting to preserve, to be a part, and to remember.

It’s not just the big events that need to be recalled and preserved. Even more precious are the everyday moments. The stuff that recreates life, so we can all partake.

What stories will you share, that someone will one day treasure?

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Janet Eriksson is a missionary of prayer in Dahlonega, Georgia and founder/coordinator of the Hometown Prayer Mission. She also volunteers with The Center for Inner Healing. She would love to hear from you at hometownprayer.org.

New hearts, new deaths, new life

I had no idea I would get so caught up in ancestry research. It’s captivating. With the Internet, it’s an emotional roller coaster too. One minute I’m tracking the sister of a grandfather who died before I was born. The next minute, I’m looking at a photo of her, taken 7 years before I was born, and 9 years before her death. The family resemblance is striking. My father must have known her, though he never mentioned her. One click of a button says, “She is your grand aunt.” Wow. I’m a grand aunt myself. My grand niece is one of my favorite people. This grand aunt never got to meet me. It’s strange, isn’t it, to compare similar relationships that are so different?

The emotions continue as I read about the premature deaths of my grandfather’s siblings. One died at four years old; another at 21. Another died very young on New Year’s Eve. Suddenly I was there, sharing in the grief of those who loved them. They were no longer boxes on a diagram. They were real people. People whose blood runs in my veins; whose lives have made a difference in my life, even though I never knew them. Their deaths were long ago but the grief was fresh for me. What did losing three of her children feel like for the mom whose husband had just died as well?

That last fact is the only thing I knew from my dad about his family. By the time I was born, my dad was 51 and most of his folks had passed on. He never talked about his past, at least not to me. Then he died when I was 15. But he did once talk about how his middle-age grandfather was killed by a wild hog he was raising on his farm. My dad didn’t tell me the story; I overheard him telling it to someone else. That tragic death always seemed horrible to me. But here I am, scrolling through time on a computer screen to find it wasn’t just one tragic death, but many. How did that mom – my great grandmother – survive?

Through many years of inner healing, I've learned to look for signs of generational curses that need to be broken. From my mom's side of the family, I recognized years ago a curse of premature death. I prayed to close those doors to the enemy, to repent and ask the Lord to turn things around, and to receive the biblical blessings of a long and satisfying life (Psalm 91:15-16). Not till today did I realize my dad's side carried the same curse. I'll be spending time in prayer today.

Despite the curses, I’ve heard many stories about a strong and tenacious great grandmother on my mom’s side. With the trauma in my life, I’ve thanked God for the legacy of this woman who endured so much. She drew her strength from the Lord and though I never met her, she modeled how I should live. When my husband left me and things were so hard, I even took her name as my surname, as a constant reminder that, “The Lord will get me through all of this.”

Today I’m blessed to discover another strong great grandmother on my dad's side of my family tree. To share in her grief and loss; to praise God she was willing to endure so much; and to recognize the things she sacrificed so that I might have life. I thank God for the generational healing that has broken the curse of premature death off my family, so that our descendants may live. I think my newly discovered great grandmother would join me in that celebration, and I wonder what words of encouragement she would offer if she were here.

Is there someone in your family line that died before you were born, but whose good legacy has shaped your life? What can you do to grow in appreciation of the life that person led? Are there curses you’ve seen traveling through your family line? Similar patterns that repeat themselves from one generation to the next? Ask the Lord to help you identify and repent for them, so those curses can be broken and blessings released in their place.

In the coming weeks I’ll share more about how the Lord has led me to break generational curses, and the changes I’ve seen. But start today by asking Him about your family, and what stands in the way of your generational blessings. You’ll be amazed what He will show you. He wants you to live free.

God bless.

***

Janet Eriksson is a missionary of prayer in Dahlonega, Georgia and founder/coordinator of the Hometown Prayer Mission. She also volunteers with The Center for Inner Healing. She would love to hear from you at hometownprayer.org.

Family connections and a slice of grapefruit

It's amazing how the simplest things can stir warmhearted memories that connect us to our families. Memories from deep in our hearts suddenly rise above the surface clutter.

My childhood relationship with my mom was never easy. It's harder to remember the good than the bad. Despite all the healing and forgiveness, and the fact that at times she was my best friend, I'm just beginning to put the good moments into the photo albums of my memories.

Tonight I was slicing grapefruit. I've been craving it all week and decided to indulge. I'm usually too impatient to eat fresh grapefruit unless it's already packaged in neat little sections. But this time, I bought the whole fruit and did something I've never done. I cut it in half and began to cut around each section, just the way my mom did when I was a kid.

The memories flooded back as the grapefruit spray hit my face. And though our relationship was as bittersweet as the fruit, all I could think was, "Wow. She did this for me." Almost every morning in the winter. We lived in Miami so grapefruit was easy to come by. But she took the time to section it for me. Who does that? A pretty cool mom does that.

Just like the latch that secures a family photo in a precious frame, that realization secured me a little more in the heart of my family.

What are the simple things that bring good family memories to mind for you? Memories you might have forgotten. A few sweet, even bittersweet moments that might displace the bad, or strengthen the good. What are they? I'd love for you to share them with me.

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Janet Eriksson is a missionary of prayer in Dahlonega, Georgia and founder/coordinator of the Hometown Prayer Mission. She also volunteers with The Center for Inner Healing. She would love to hear from you at hometownprayer.org.

The generational experiment

I grew up trying to escape my family. Anything to be someone else, somewhere else.

Fast forward almost 48 years … My greatest passion is generational healing through Christ. And that starts with my own family.

I've just embarked on a "generational experiment," praying through my family's history. I have no idea what I will discover but I'm excited.

One of the biggest obstacles to generational healing is unforgiveness. After an hour of searching through family records, I've discovered unforgiveness I didn't know I carried.

I can't wait to see what else is revealed in my heart, and what changes will occur through prayer, as I venture deep into my ancestral lines.

I look forward to the blessings that will grow from this adventure; the people I will meet along the way; and the cool things I will discover about people I never met, but who have shaped my life in more ways than I might ever know.

Let the journey begin.

***

Janet Eriksson is a missionary of prayer in Dahlonega, Georgia and founder/coordinator of the Hometown Prayer Mission. She also volunteers with The Center for Inner Healing. She would love to hear from you at hometownprayer.org.