THE WAY BACK
By Rene V. Parault
Sitting here in the east, my husband and I have had time to look upon these mountain tops and reflect over the past year. Reflect over the lessons we have learned through our recent trials and tribulations in the ministry which was part of our life.
We want to first of all declare that we as ministers of the gospel for many years, have just been through a most trying and devastating situation. We know, by writing about it, that we might be able to help other ministers in similar situations. Also, we may be able to enlighten the Body of Christ on proper behavior within the Body. We thank the Lord for the grace that was wrought in us and to us during this time, and we certainly say without a doubt, that His mercy endureth forever.
Thinking of ourselves as adept ministers over the past years, having much experience and moving in the gifts of the Holy Spirit, we never gave a thought that we would ever be able to be deceived into believing a lie. We know that many ministers are going through much shaking and some even have made the national news media, much to the despair of many. But is this the case of all ministers? Books have been written concerning the “fallen minister,” but what about those ministers that “have not fallen” into sin? False accusations were labeled against them because of their human faults and mistakes. Then these ministers were brought under condemnation by believing these accusations. They have been convinced by the enemy into believing something that is not true.
Are we sometimes unable to see our own faults? Don’t we all have them? Are we ready to abandon them when we see them, so that we can walk in the Holy Spirit totally? Is that day here yet? Are we still learning the ways of the Spirit? Are we perfected (mature) yet? Or are we growing into perfection? Are the statements above for all? Or only for a few? You answer!
The enemy’s tactics are to take over the mind in the midst of deception. That’s right--for if evil spirits can enforce their will over one’s will, then we can lose faith and will lose confidence. Even after many years in the Lord’s service, it is then possible to be greatly shaken in the area of one’s confidence in the Lord. The result can be to give up the ministry and then backslide.
Let us go back to the beginning.
The Lord sent me out in 1979, giving me direction, and announcing audibly “Go.” I was living in Florida at the time as a single woman, working and finished raising my family. I have called it in my testimony, “The Release.” The Holy Spirit had come into my life, baptized me and empowered me into His service. The next five years were very active, as I was being trained for the ministry by the Holy Spirit, preaching in many churches, home fellowships, and becoming established in those localities. God’s work through me was done in Central America, and throughout other continents, which also included weekly radio and writing music and making albums. Prophetically, the Lord used me for His church and much was accomplished.
I met and married a wonderful man who, as myself, had come through a painful past. He had pastored many years. John was well-equipped with the Word of God, for it was his life’s work. Writing books were also in the making a that time. John suffered greatly from a break-up of his family, and even left the pastorate for a season of time and was put on the shelf. This waiting on the Lord in these trying circumstances was also a discipline of the Holy Spirit for him. But this too ended, and what a joy it was when we were united together by the Lord. Yes, supernaturally, the Holy Spirit put us together and there was no doubt in our minds that this was so.
We proclaimed to many about the wonderful union that God did between us; and we found immediate great love and respect for one other. Our marriage was to be a testimony to the Body of Christ.
The two of us in ministry was such a blessing for all and what an anointing flowed between us. When one would stop in the midst of the ministry, the other would take right over. We made a real team in the Lord.
How excited we were, for John had said how the Lord spoke to him and was sending him to a church. This direction by the Lord was given to him before we were even married. Yes, a little church (small group of people) in the mid-west which was my base for a few years. This little church was “birthed” out of my ministry. I had been so busy traveling in the previous years that my home and base, and church became one.
We settled down, newlyweds, in that little base. The anointing of the Lord was there and it was precious. The teaching of the Word was good and strong, able to deliver and heal. Prophesy flowed. John and I both ministered the Word of God and watched the people grow and come forth. Each time the church expanded physically, John would get the Word from the Lord, and the Lord always met us and He was faithful.
Our traveling was limited in those days as we had a responsibility over the flock. Our main thrust was that little flock, even though there was an occasional trip to Central America. (Work which we had established previously.)
God began to add and add. We began to record the prophecies that were given. It was becoming a strong prophetic church. Worship and Praise were raised up as musicians, psalmists, and dancers were added. The whole church learned how to come into worship and praise. (Which is a form of deliverance.) We always came together with an expectancy of what the Lord would do. Saints were growing in the knowledge of the Lord; marriages were coming forth, many babies were born (which was a delight to the Lord); and even a small school was in the making. Everything seemed well-pleasing to the Lord. Everything was seemingly so right, in the realm of the Holy Spirit.
Something began to creep in unawares.
One time, I remember very distinctly, John prophesied concerning “the critical spirit” that we, as a church, seemed to have towards one another. When we heard this prophesy, we went and repented to one another on different occasions. This seemed to smooth things over, at least we thought so. Surely this could be handled properly. But then other prophesy would sometimes tell of the same thing. The Word states, “a little leaven leaveneth the whole lump.”
John and I were so close to the situation. We loved the people with our whole hearts and were excited with them; we cried with them, and fellowshipped together with them. We had been faithful to them, this we knew, pouring out our lives to them, so that they could grow in grace. I had thought, surely these matters of criticism and judgmentalism would pass quickly. Even the matter of jealousy was surfacing. I had also noticed that prophesy was becoming stronger and stronger to that body.
Then it happened...... in the fall of 1990...
I saw it in a vision the day it happened. I saw that something had set itself up in the midst of the people in the church. It was an “image” of blackness, that is how I could describe it. It looked like an obelisk. The dictionary’s definition of “criticism” is.. “the art of judging, inclined to find fault, the art of judging the merit or any performance, to judge with severity.”
When criticism is spoken often enough, and even prayed as prayers and believed:
The criticism turns into a lie. A lie with force! The word states, “judge not least ye be judged.”
Fault-finding became the “crack in the wall” for the ministry and for the church.
Yes, after six and one-half years of pastoring a people and years of beforehand ministry, John and I found ourselves without a church and ministry. This was accomplished in exactly two months. We had become the target of that spirit, and had become the object of criticism. We were accused (by a few who were used of the enemy) of controlling the church. I was the first one that was accused, and was the so-called witch in control. I then agreed to sit down in midst of the congregation because I desired the unity of the church. After I did that, John, as head-pastor then became the next target. He was accused of similar. The lie spread throughout the whole church, pamphlets were handed out in secret, a packet of our wrongs, was delivered to our doorstep, and they gathered together (without our knowing) to “pray” us out. We were prophesied against,( more than once in the midst of the assembly) accusing us of our blood-red sins (out of Isaiah). (And to this day we still don’t know what those sins were). Even our marriage was lied about, claiming that it wasn’t God that put us together.
The lie grew.
This was an awesome shock to us because we thought we knew these people as family. What was happening? They were calling us false. And then the lie began to take root and grow in us. “Could we be that bad?? Were our shortcomings that terrible??? What sins had we committed?” We were being scorned, rejected, cursed. The Word of Grace and Truth that we had loved and taught, was trampled underneath. The lie began to gain momentum. Everything we said was twisted, every move we made was the subject of criticism and laughed at. Even the children looked at us with disrespect. The people trampled the prophecies of the years past, under their feet. Dancing, praise, and worship ceased. The Word of God which we held in high esteem was disregarded because it came from us. (It was at this time the Lord spoke to me and said He was removing the candlestick from among us).
We stood before them in the assembly, and repented of anything and everything we could think of. We even did that more than once. But would you believe, they could not receive it? They said it wasn’t from our heart. Again, “criticism”. It was a powerful unleashing in all it’s fury. They had become very angry, even in the face of repentance.
The tongues wagged and wagged. And so much went on it doesn’t even warrant to tell all of it.
Locally, no one wanted to get involved with us, and even some surrounding pastors had heard the spreading of lies and believed them. These were men we never met, who never met us, nor did they know us personally. Yet they were also quick to criticize, and give council. (so we heard.) We were literally abandoned.
This wonderful man of God that I loved and respected, stood and took full responsibility in the face of what was happening. If I ever understood “spiritual stoning” it was then. Even as Stephen the martyr was stoned 2,000 years ago, we have the same thing today. It is called “tongue stoning”.
The warm church setting was no more.
We had no choice but to step down as leadership. John said, the Lord spoke “Release, release” in his spirit.
There was no where to go, little money, and we were so confused. Lies were rampant. We even had a hard time functioning and at times found ourselves disorientated, because we were believing the lies. “After all these years, we were failures.”
We left that metropolis where we had lived for many years, and we began to make our way towards the mountains where our natural family lived, to begin again.
What happened to those left behind?
After we left, the church split. One group immediately sprang for power and for leadership. They gleefully rejoiced at their “new found freedom,” even naming their church after that understanding. But little did they know that it wasn’t freedom at all, but bondage of their own making. Then, in just a few months they began to devour one another until many of them were no longer speaking to one another. The church, building, and all are no more, and one year later all have scattered, each one doing what seems right in their own eyes; never recapturing the lovely anointing that we had all experienced in our midst from the Lord’s presence. It was gone.
A remnant remained.
Only a remnant repented as time went on, and they chose to go on. Praise the Lord! This little remnant kept in touch with us, and the Word we taught them was doing a good work within them. This was also something the Lord had spoken to my heart... “that we laid down our ministry that a remnant could come forth.” One of the sisters was awakened one morning during all of this, and a voice spoke to her. “I allowed this because they did not listen to my prophets”. What did the prophets say?? “Don’t criticize one another.”
What about us this past year?
We have spent it in the process of healing and deliverance. Yes, we have had to be delivered of the evil spirits that were assigned to us because of taking in a lie. The Lord has opened up our understanding to what had happened to us, and we had to fall on our faces and REPENT OF THE LIES WE HAD BELIEVED AND TAKEN IN. Yes, we had to repent before the Lord of the lies about ourselves. When we began to do that, then, and only then did we begin to experience the healing and deliverance.
Our battles in this past year have been over rejection, loss of ministry, loss of relationships, loss of family, depression, despondency, confusion, loss of joy, loss of praise and worship. Our faith was greatly shaken, and our warfare tremendous. Neither of us had ever experienced anything like this in our entire life in the ministry. (John’s work in the Lord went back some 30 years) We stood together, cried together, and prayed together.
The Way Back.
We had to get back somehow. Back to our position in the Lord. Then the Lord, through His mercy and love began to show us . . .THE WAY BACK!
Ministers (friends) came one by one, from different areas and gave us comfort in word of knowledge and council. One brother spoke “the word of faith” into us for five days straight. Prophetic word came, phone calls from old friends in other locations. What a blessing all of this was to us. The Lord was in control of our healing, and He sent those He had ordained, that we might learn some great lessons through all of this. His mercy and truth and grace was always with us. Even at times when we felt abandoned, we were not. The word we had preached - “GRACE” - was the substance we were learning to walk in.
Little by little the Lord began to build back into us what the enemy had stolen. John had to go to work part-time to sustain us. We also began to try the waters of ministry once again. “Would the Lord use us again, even wounded as we were?” “Were we still to be His servants in ministry?” “Would we ever preach again?” “Would we be able to prophesy again?” (for the enemy surely wanted to destroy that gift) “Would word of knowledge ever operate again, or the gifts of healing?” As we ventured out to minister, little by little He began to restore our confidence, our trust, our faith. Each time we went to minister, the enemy would whisper, “you will never make it, you are washed up, through.” Then we had to press into the Lord and overcome that voice and press on. The end result was always a flow of the anointing and the lie of the enemy was put down.
One year later, a time of restoration.
Now here we are on our mountain side in our little home which was provided by the Lord. We can look out at the beautiful scenery and feel the hand of God upon us once more. Yes, the grace of the Lord is present and how we have cried with great joy because we once again can feel His presence upon us. We know that we still have more healing, and more restoration to experience; and we also know there will be more spiritual battles for us to walk through. But one thing is for certain, we are
ON OUR WAY BACK! PRAISE GOD!
The songs of Zion are once more resounding in our hearts. Our trust in the Lord is that He will send us in days ahead to the places of His choosing. Whatever and whenever, we are coming back.
Much compassion and understanding has been worked into us this past year. We will close with this...whatever way we can help a minister or ministry in distress, our hands are out to him. For how would we be able to help if we had not walked through this ordeal?
We have no animosity towards anyone, and have prayed earnestly that the Lord forgive all.
Criticism is a terrible thing. May the Lord deliver us all from it.
SPRING 1994-three years later.
As I have sat down to put all this on paper, and look back, it’s hard to believe that we walked through such an ordeal. The Lord has restored us in these past 3 1/2 years. We can rejoice because He has used us to minister to many of His servants who have been devastated in one way or another. He has allowed us that privilege because we can say to them, “We know how you feel. Now stand on your feet and go on. God is faithful.”
The Body of Christ must begin to realize the preciousness of the body, which is His Body. We will have to become aware of cruelty of the tongue, and how the enemy is always lurking to do damage and discredit the message, which is the Word of God. We are in the days of deceiving spirits, and they are growing in momentum.
Let us learn from our past mistakes. Let us learn from this message “The Way Back” May we, with great zeal and passion, vow before Our God to do what is good and right in His eyes. May we do all we know to do in Him. To cancel out any debts we feel a brother or sister owes us. May we forgive, so that we can be forgiven from Our Lord. Let us walk uprightly in His Kingdom, loving good and hating evil. Let us pray that we will come to know the ways of the Lord, as His servant Moses.
May the grace of our Lord Jesus Christ be with you, and His mercy and love surround you, and that you would grow in the knowledge of Him, who is all in all.
Psalm 55:12-14 “For it was not an enemy that reproached me; then I could have borne it: neither was it he that hated me that did magnify himself against me, then I would have hid myself from him; But it was thou, a man mine equal, my guide, and mine acquaintance. We took sweet counsel together, and walked unto the house of God in company.”
Zechariah 13:6 “And one shall say to him, What are these wounds in thine hands? Then he shall answer, Those with which I was wounded in the house of my friends.”
Proverbs 6:16-19 “These six things doth the Lord hate; yea, seven are an abomination unto him; A proud look, a lying tongue, and hands that shed innocent blood, A heart that deviseth wicked imaginations, feet that be swift in running to mischief, A false witness that speaketh lies, and he that soweth discord among brethren.”
Galatians 5:14-15 “For all the law is fulfilled in one word, even in this; Thou shalt love thy neighbor as thyself. But if ye bite and devour one another, take heed that ye be not consumed one of another.”
James 5:16 “Confess your faults one to another, and pray one for another, that ye may be healed. The effectual fervent prayer of a righteous man availeth much.”
I John 4:20-21 “If a man say, I love God, and hateth his brother, he is a liar: for he that loveth not his brother whom he hath seen, how can he love God whom he hath not seen? And this commandment have we from him, That he who loveth God love his brother also.”
Year - 2001
John and Rene have been traveling and ministering in their walk of faith for the past few years. The Lord opened doors in New York, New Hampshire, Florida, Louisiana, England, Scotland, Puerto Rico, Costa Rica, Nicaragua, Honduras, Mexico and other places. The Lord has been increasing the ministry, and the best is yet to come. Many books have been written over these years, seminars taught, Pastors conferences given, but the best thing has been that God always makes a provision to find , “The Way Back.”
Year 2004 - 2005
We have found in the past few years, that which we walked through many years ago, others in leadership have had the same trials and tribulations. We have been able to consol such pastors, because we ourselves have known such a tribulation, and we minister out of experience.
God has continued to move in the ministry, and the work in England has expanded. There has also been a local fellowship that has been birthed, plus an emphasis on a training and teaching center. There has been seminars and the newest one will be in April of 2005. Also the vision of a ministry training and teaching center here in Franklin, NC right on our own land. So the Lord continues to build. We thank you Lord, for the “Way Back.”
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