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Holding onto the Horns of the Altar: Grieving the Sacrifice, Reaping the Blessing

Updated: May 11



I would like to share a story with you today. It is a supernatural story. It is also a real account of my last several months and it is a testimony to the omnipresence of God and how He cares about every aspect of our daily lives. This real-life account serves as a lesson to pay attention to the details, to your dreams, to the verse you read somewhere, to the simple words of a prayer someone prays over you, and that a Kingdom community is of the upmost importance. The Holy Spirit can speak to you in a variety of ways, and this is an account of how He spoke to me to help prepare my heart and save my son’s life once again.


The middle portion of this blog’s title has been repeating in my spirit over and over for the last 6 months or so. Grieving the sacrifice...grieving the sacrifice...grieving the sacrifice. I was grieving everything I had sacrificed for the Lord. I have given up so much of my old life. I had put everything on the altar. My marriage, my kids, my family, my career, church family, childhood and college friendships, my own selfish desires, my brokenness, even the hidden rooms of my heart I had completely shut off. I decided to give everything of me, to do the will of my Father in heaven. And for everything I had given up, God blessed me with new and more beautiful connections and even more provision I have ever had in my life.





But the sacrifice…when I thought about the life I let go of and the people I had to leave behind for a season of who knows how long, I felt a heavy sadness. "Rejoice!" the Holy Spirit kept whispering in the midst of this stretching, knowing He already won the battle. He brought me back to the encounter I had with Him where He gave me a choice. It was an encounter where the presence of the Lord was so heavy it took my breath away. As I laid on the floor before Him, He told me the road would be hard, but He would be with me every step. I chose Him over everything in the midst of the pain, knowing there was a great reward for laying down my life for His purpose, instead of trying to find my own.



 

For if you choose self-sacrifice and lose your lives for My glory, you will continually discover true life. But if you choose to keep your lives for yourselves, you will forfeit what you try to keep. For even if you were to gain all the wealth and power of this world—at the cost of your own life—what good would that be? And what could be more valuable to you than your own soul?


Matthew 16:25-26

 


Back in September 2021, I started taking my youngest son, General, to a medical daycare here close to our home. I delayed enrolling him for almost a year, but finally decided it would be nice for him to have somewhere he could go and be around other kids. If you haven’t read my past blogs, my son, General, was diagnosed with Spinal Muscular Atrophy type 1 when he was 8 months old. Spinal Muscular Atrophy type 1 is a degenerative neuromuscular disease without a current cure. Before I received his official diagnosis on Black Friday of 2016, one of the neuromuscular doctors advised me to research this condition after his EMG. This debilitating disease lived in our DNA—passed down to our son due to mutated genes.


That was the beginning of this great sacrifice. I call it my Abraham and Isaac moment. I laid my life on the altar. I laid my son on the altar. I laid my marriage on the altar. I laid my children on the altar. I proclaimed YOUR WILL, NOT MINE and screamed it with every fiber of my being. I mention this moment so often in my life because it was that powerful. I cried out, He heard me and my journey into a deeper relationship with Christ began…It also began the discovery of supernatural healing, the prophetic, and true inner healing and deliverance that comes with truly serving Jesus and living out the gospel He preached.


My dream life instantly resurrected. I hadn’t dreamed in years, but what I was dreaming started happening in real life, sometimes that week, sometimes not until a year or two later. Through an organic process I learned I was receiving strategy, warnings, and correction in my dreams from the Lord. He even brought back memories of dreams I had as a little girl that were still significant. When I listened to what God was saying to me there was a grace that surrounded my actions, even when I misheard or took a wrong step. The path I walked, crawled at times, was continually confirmed with prophetic words at church, conversations with other believers, and scripture I read in my own time with the Lord.


 

“Therefore, my brothers and sisters, be eager to prophesy, and do not forbid speaking in tongues.”

‭‭1 Corinthians‬ ‭14:39‬ ‭NIV


 


For anyone who is not familiar with what a prophetic word is, it is a word of encouragement, and can also be corrective, from the Holy Spirit through another person. Usually, this person knows something they would never be able to know about you or your situation, unless God spoke to them. The word should resonate and be in alignment with what the Holy Spirit has already spoken to you personally in your own time with Him and it also needs be in alignment with the Word of God, the Bible. People who do not believe in God, will go to Psychics or Tarot Card readers to get direction, however when you are a Christian and in a relationship with the God who created the universe, there is no need to get this information from another spirit, which is demonic in nature. It is possible to get your purpose and direction straight from the Holy Spirit. God will use other believers filled with the Holy Spirit along your journey to help you along. If you have never read "Pilgrim's Progress" by John Bunyan or seen the movie, I highly recommend it as it helps bring clarity to this concept.



After a few weeks of taking General to the new daycare, I was feeling pretty good about my new routine. A few months earlier, I acted on another word I received from the Lord to go to culinary school, so having extra time to do my labs without suctioning General in between felt amazing! Plus I joined the gym and started swimming again. Life felt good. The daily disciplines I had been intentionally working on were improving, goals were being achieved, words I had been given were coming to pass. I had felt better than I had in a really long time.


Monday, September 27th, 2022, I took my son to daycare and as I drove towards the gym, I received a phone call. The nurse said my son looked like he wasn’t doing well and I needed to pick him up. Five minutes later 911 was called. As I ran through the doors, I heard the Holy Spirit say almost audibly, “STAY IN MY PERFECT PEACE.” It was command, not a suggestion. I saw General’s face. His eyes rolled back; he wasn’t there. He was unresponsive and he was struggling to breathe. I stepped into nurse mode, I started coughing him with his cough assist while praying in tongues in front of the staff. I didn’t care if they thought I was crazy. I knew the benefit of serving a living God. I declared His Word, “My son will live and not die!” A couple of the nurses said they were praying too. Minutes felt like hours, and next thing I knew we were looking over the San Diego coastline on a helicopter to Rady Children’s Hospital. It wasn’t until we arrived at the hospital that he started to come back. The emergency team deep suctioned him twice, which helped him stabilize his breathing and he was able to be put back on his bipap. We stayed in the hospital for 3 days.


Once we were out of the hospital, I struggled to gain the momentum I had been moving in before. I went back to the daycare and retrained the entire staff on all my son’s equipment as requested. The next day they told me they wouldn’t be able to take him back due to not having enough staff to take care of his needs. It made me sad. Sad that my son would miss the opportunity to learn in a different environment and sad that he was considered a liability. I understood that it was for his protection. God knew better than I did, even though it was frustrating. I still held onto the promise that God made me. I heard Him say so clearly that He would heal me first before my son…I wondered how long it would take. When God? Why is this happening? Is my son going to die before this miracle that I am faithfully believing for even happens?


After our crazy hospital stay, I took him to our cranial chiropractor, Dr. Hamel, who is a believer in Jesus as well. During our appointment, I said somewhat insecurely yet still trying to sound confident, that God said to me that He was going to heal me first before He was going to heal General. He whispered this to me, after so many times of me bringing my son to supernatural healing services and asking every man and woman of God to pray for my son. The Holy Spirit spoke to Dr. Hamel later that evening giving her a word for me. She said she was reminded of the story of Abraham and Isaac and how Abraham laid Isaac on the altar. She said God was asking me, “Are you willing to go through a period of testing regarding your son and your health in order for Him to make the healing and the miracles He will do in our lives more relevant?” This word was in alignment with what God spoke to me already regarding my son. He brought me back to the beginning of my journey with Him, when I said I would surrender everything. He was correcting me when my own selfish agenda started to creep in. I had become so wrapped up in wanting healing for my family in my own timing. This life devoted to caring for General in addition to trying to take care of all the other aspects of my life was becoming more intense. I was tired. In this moment I realigned myself with God's timing and the way He wanted me to walk out this journey, instead of what I desperately wanted for my son, instant full restorative healing now…in my timing.


That same weekend I attended a service about worship led by Rick Pino. The sermon, incredibly inspired, convicted my heart. I wanted to worship God with my life, in every way possible, but then not even an hour later I sobbed alone in my car, terrified of what God might ask me to do. Would my son have to die first? How far would this disease destroy his body? Would I have to suffer through autoimmune disease after autoimmune disease like my mom did? I was grieving all the horrible scenarios I might have to endure in this lifetime, even though I knew God's plans for me and my entire family were good. It was necessary for me to grieve and be real with God about my deepest fears, so I could then put on my armor to stand in His promises over my life.




I picked myself up again. It felt like this was the thousandth time I had been knocked down. It was a little easier to get up and pick up where I had left off. I felt the benefit of the endurance and perseverance He helped me build. I continued focusing on raising my kids, taking care of my son, going to culinary school, and working to build and steward the businesses He had placed in my hands. I even had the opportunity to teach Sunday school at my church and to serve. I felt the rivers of living water flow more effortlessly and a deeper freedom in the Lord. As God continued the deep healing in my heart, I started hearing the Holy Spirit more clearly. I learned to be more prudent on what He wanted me to share and what was intended for just me and Him. I started interceding for specific people and situations He had given me dreams about and He started to show me how He was working on their behalf.


On Sunday, March 13, 2022, Tom Moffett and his wife Gardenia had come to my church. Tom is known as "Moffett the prophet" and the congregation at Summit San Marcos looks forward to the accurate prophetic words that the Holy Spirit gives through him. However, as powerful and as exciting as it is to watch a true man of God on the stage call out an individual who needs to hear from the Lord, God saves some pretty exciting and powerful moves of His Spirit in the places people don’t expect. Pastor Daniel called me up to the front for prayer to stand for my son that morning. He said the Lord kept showing him my face and that we needed to pray for my son. I came to the altar and waited. Many prayer warriors had surrounded others up at the front, but I stood alone for a moment, not sure if they saw me or not. I waited knowing I was called up for a reason. One guy came and asked me if I was waiting for prayer, I nodded my head yes. He went and asked Pastor Gardenia to come and pray for me. It is important to know that Pastor Gardenia did not know me before this day. I had not met her personally, she had never seen my son and my son wasn’t with me that day. She didn’t know his condition. She just asked the Holy Spirit how to pray. She is a humble vessel for the Lord to work through and this is when the prophetic grace on someone’s life works best. She may not know me or my situation, but God does. And because she has surrendered her life for His will, she reaps of the benefit of having the Holy Spirit move through her in a powerful way for God’s people.


She had a vision of my son. She saw a helmet of some sort. We continued praying, it wasn’t clear what the helmet meant so we prayed that he was completely armored in the armor of God…the helmet of salvation…we continued praying, she interjected, and she said I think this helmet is actually hindering him. We prayed that any hindrance of the enemy over his mind would be removed. She then had a vision while we were praying of me. I was hanging on the horns of the altar. In the moment, I honestly had no idea what that meant, but it sounded like an important symbol. In the midst of us praying, the same guy who went to get Pastor Gardenia to pray for me, came back and said the Holy Spirit told him to come and tell me it would be a favorable outcome, better than I could have ever imagined. He said the Holy Spirit would come and confirm it in my alone time with Him later that week when I was in my car. I was excited even though I didn’t have a complete picture. He stayed this time as we stood in a circle fully feeling Jesus in the midst. His presence is powerful. Pastor Gardenia then heard two words, “Iron Lung.” She asked, “What does that mean?” I looked at the other guy who knew the meaning as well, the “Iron Lung” was a medical contraption that helped kids and adults with polio breathe. It was the first ventilator. This woman had no idea that my son had a degenerative neuromuscular disease similar to Polio in many ways. She didn’t know my son used a bi-pap ventilator to help him breathe when he is tired. She didn’t know, but God did. He was showing her something to help me in the future and we both weren’t exactly sure with what yet either. She came up to me after the service, saying she felt led to give me her card with her contact information. Right after church I sent her a picture of my son and a text that read, “Thank you for letting God use you this morning. He just gave me confirmation of the next step I need to focus on and heavenly strategy for his healing.” In my mind, I was thinking God was confirming a holistic treatment I had been thinking about for my son… but it wasn’t that at all. Somehow, I knew in part that she had given me divine strategy.



God gave me hope. A mini revival within. And He was about to give me another deeper revelation of His love for me. Just like that kind man said, the Holy Spirit met me in my car the next week while seeking Him. I asked the Holy Spirit, “What does hanging on the horns of the altar even mean?” And God’s presence filled my mini SUV. I discovered that hanging onto the horns of the altar was a significant act written about in the Old Testament of the Bible. The horns of the altar are described in Exodus when the tabernacle was being built and in Exodus 29 it talks about how the horns were covered with the blood of the sacrifice in order to consecrate Aaron and the Levite priests.


 

“Seven days you shall make atonement for the altar and consecrate it, and the altar shall be most holy. Whatever touches the altar shall become holy.”

After God gives instructions on what must be offered on the altar, He said, “There I will meet with the people of Israel, and it shall be sanctified by My glory. I will consecrate the tent of meeting and the altar. Aaron also and his sons I will consecrate to serve me as priests. I will dwell among the people of Israel and will be their God. And they shall know that I am the Lord their God, who brought them out of the land of Egypt that I might dwell among them. I am the Lord their God.” Exodus 29:43-46


 


There is also a story in 1 Kings where a man, Adonijah, feared for his life and he ran to the horns of the altar for refuge. During this holy moment in my car, I learned the horns of the altar are a symbol of refuge, consecration, and purification. The revelation that the Holy Spirit gave me for my situation is that His altar is a symbol of the ultimate sacrifice, God sending His only son to die for our sins, knowing that He would rise from the dead, conquering death. When I ran back to Jesus and I held onto Him, He became my refuge. When I placed my son on the altar, He promised me full healing and life. The more I put on the altar, the more of myself I gave to the Lord, the more the devil wanted me to let go of those horns, he tried to make me fear my circumstances, my future, what people thought of me, or even what my life looked like to everyone else. My son’s health was challenged again and again. My health started deteriorating even though I was eating all the right foods and doing every healthy thing I knew how. The devil wanted to make me doubt God’s goodness and plans for me, but I continued to hang on with everything I had. I knew God was good. I knew Jesus saved me. I had reaped the benefits of being in His will. He has been consecrating me, He had purified me in the blood of Jesus and He considers me righteous. And He cares about me, so much so that He gives me strategy to defeat the enemy who has been trying to kill and destroy everything I cherish in my life. This battle has been long and difficult, but My God is the God of supernatural strength and perseverance. He said this was my season to build with one hand, and fight with His sword in the other. I keep putting one foot in front of the other, declaring God’s promises, praying for my friends and for the restoration of my family, for the people God has instructed me to pray for, to work for, to bless, knowing that laying my life down for Jesus is worth it, no matter how difficult it seems.



Two weeks ago, on Wednesday, April 6, 2022, I took another step forward in my holistic health journey following divine instruction as God heals not only my mind, my heart, and my soul, but my temple where He resides as well. Right after that step, my best friend and I went to Urth Café in Hollywood with her two youngest kids and General along with us. It was so hot outside, and I could tell General wasn’t feeling his best, but he seemed ok. We decided to go eat inside to have the AC so he could cool off a little. Right when we got to the front of the line I looked over at General. He was lifting his shoulders up and down trying to breath. Something was stuck, a mucus plug maybe…and he lost consciousness. I picked him up and brought him to my shoulder pounding his back to loosen up the mucus, trying to revive him. It was the same way he looked at the daycare. Eyes rolled back, pale, non-responsive. I had just shared the helicopter story a day before with the chef I am interning under.


 

“Stay in His perfect peace, stay in His perfect peace,” I repeated under my breath in between praying in the Spirit. “What is happening?! God! I need you! My son! Don’t let him die! Please don’t let him die!”

 


I held his limp body close to my shoulder running to my car that we had parked in front of the valet. I opened the back of my trunk. He wasn’t breathing. He was so pale. “General! General! Breathe baby, breathe baby! Come on, breathe!!” I could feel the tremble of my lower lip, knowing the presence of God was with me as I quickly grabbed the cough assist and started coughing him, trying to dislodge the mucus or whatever was in the way of him breathing. Call 911! Kelly was on the phone with the operator. They had passed her to 3 different people and the last one being rude and difficult. “Start chest compressions,” she finally said. A nurse walked by the commotion and started helping me do CPR. I saw her hesitate to put her mouth on his, she wasn’t sure if she was allowed to give CPR due to COVID, and asked out loud if she was allowed to do this. It was strange to me in the moment as it wasn't time to ask whether it was ok to save a life. I put on his bi-pap to help him breath. The fire fighters and police came. I gave my name as they grabbed my son. I hopped into the police SUV. The hospital was right around the corner. Thank God!



 

I had a dream on September 12, 2021. I was starting a new job as a nurse…a fellow nurse in the dream prayed for me. She said in the dream, the Lord wants you to seek Him, seek Him like in James to ask for wisdom.


"My dear brothers and sisters, what good is it if someone claims to have faith but demonstrates no good works to prove it? How could this kind of faith save anyone?" James 2:14



 

Back to real life, that felt like a bad dream… I entered the emergency room with my son’s lifeless body on the hospital bed. I knew my job, I was a fellow nurse aiding in the task of saving my son. A nurse who looked like the same woman in my dream came up to me, she put her arm around me and asked if I needed anything, I asked her to pray for my son. She responded back, “I am praying for your son.” The risk of failed extubation is high for kids with the same condition as General and most of the time they end up needing a tracheostomy. I asked the doctors to wait to intubate until it was absolutely necessary. The doctors put him on bi-pap. “He needs a deep suction, somethings stuck…” I offered. For a minute he held his oxygen levels, but then he started to drop again. Emergency intubation was needed. “He doesn’t need a paralytic,” I informed the doctors. I have learned to advocate for my son in the hospital. It is another area the Holy Spirit has trained me in. They decided to test for seizures to find some sort of explanation for what happened. The tech placed a sticky gel-like glue on his scalp and made him a gauze helmet to cover the electrodes attached to his head. He was completely out of it. He didn’t seem to know who I was or where he was. I played worship by his ear, I prayed and sang in my heavenly language over him. I knew God was with me. He had given me a dream, I was living it out. I was called out for prayer a month before for General. God knew there would be an attack on my son’s life. Last time this happened, He told me to stay in His perfect peace and General came through and recovered. I remembered all the times God had been faithful to His promise.




This was the first time I didn’t post on social media. I knew I needed to focus. God said to ask Him for wisdom. I read the whole book of James. I praised and worshipped Him in the middle of this storm. I reached out to specific prayer warriors, the women’s Bible study I attended, and Pastor Gardenia—there was indeed a reason I needed her phone number. The first night when General’s dad stayed with him in the hospital, I was able to find a hotel close by 40% off. It was one of the nicest hotels I have ever stayed in. Everything was gold, and when you stepped in the lobby, golden angel wings were painted on the wall by the elevator. “Rest, my daughter.” Parking was $50 a night for the hotel, but I walk in God’s favor. He saved a parking spot for me right out front for free.




Just like my dream, I was treated like a staff member at the hospital and attended daily rounds regarding my son. I was respected and listened to. I shared the specific protocols that are best for my son’s condition, using the same documents I printed years earlier when I first had to advocate for him in the Rady’s PICU. These same documents helped change the policies for my son with the doctor who created them. After the first day in the hospital General kept having high fevers and was still unresponsive for the most part. The second day the neurologist came to talk with me. She asked me questions about General and then said that there was some seizure activity even though they didn’t see anything on the camera and she asked me if I saw anything. I said I wasn’t sure, that he was still out of it but I didn’t see a seizure. They immediately wanted to treat. It didn’t feel right. “No.” She looked at me like I was crazy. She sent two more doctors to convince me that we may need to treat to make sure this didn’t happen again. What this doctor didn’t know is that I have been walking alongside my best friend through her painful walk of watching her husband have debilitating seizures. I have learned about the toxic and dangerous side effects of the medications used and how to treat seizures in a more natural way. I rebuked that doctor's report with a confidence that this is not what God had for my son. “God, I need Your wisdom in this situation.”


I needed to take a walk and eat dinner and as I was stepping out another SMA mom reached out to me to see how General was doing. She offered to buy me dinner and I jokingly asked her, “How did you know I was just about to step out and get something?” I already knew God was taking care of my every need in such a beautiful way. I was in the midst of luxury, in a Jewish tower, in Beverly Hills. The first restaurant I was able to walk to was Tocaya, an organic Modern Mexican place. It was perfect. I was served delicious gluten free tacos on a golden taco holder in front of a sign that said, “LOVE.” Before I left that heavenly spot, I prayed for my son, rebuking every attack of the enemy over his life.




I remembered another dream I had December 9, 2019, in one part of the dream I was sitting in a luxurious spa with golden chandeliers above me sharing how God gave me new fillings in my teeth, and in another part of the same dream I was walking through a shopping center that was attached to a hospital. I realized as I walked back from Tocaya, located on the far side of the Beverly Shopping Center, I was right across the street from Cedar-Sinai Hospital a couple blocks away from the Beverly Hills mansions. Is this real life? I know I am supposed to be here, right in this moment. Supernatural peace surrounded me as I checked in with the guard at the hospital entrance.


As I entered my son’s room, a doctor wanted to talk to me. He told me they made a mistake. He said one of their EEG techs had sent the wrong report to the doctors. The seizure activity wasn’t General's. Jesus! Thank you!! This mistake would be apologized for by different doctors over the next 3 days. Wait a minute…a helmet…an iron lung?! My son now breathing on a ventilator, wearing a gauze helmet- and the gauze helmet was placed on his head to see if he had seizures…my son was sweating profusely with non-stop fevers because of this helmet. This was the helmet that was hindering him. God knew. He had prepared us to fight and gave us strategy. There wasn’t any seizure activity that they could see at least until the false report was sent. They kept saying they were going to take off the gauze helmet, but then kept it on. As I shared the good news about the false report with my best friend, the divine strategy clicked…it was the wisdom I was asking for. I immediately asked for the helmet to be removed. The nurse said they were given permission to remove it, but they had to do rounds first. This would take at least another hour. More delay...I had enough delay. A fire was lit by the Holy Spirit and a new boldness came over me. I told them the helmet needed to come off now. I started removing it myself, and they quickly started helping me. It was after this moment, General’s fever started to come down. The next day he started responding more and raising his eyebrows to say yes to movies.



This was an act of obedience that was important. It was a small instruction that had huge benefits. Pastor Gardenia, like so many other believers who have helped me along in this difficult walk, was obedient to the Holy Spirit’s leading when she shared her vision with me. God used her obedience to help me in my obedience to Him, accomplishing His will. God continued to bless me during this hospital stay. He opened doors and gave me opportunities I wouldn’t have had otherwise. While General was in the hospital, I started working for my first private client as a Holistic Chef. I also took the opportunity to meet my instructor and mentor from Bauman College in person. I took communion and prayed with two beautiful women from my Bible study. Deeper connections were made, testimonies were shared, and faith grew. When the doctor told me there was a 90% chance of my son needing to be reintubated, I stood in full faith and confidence and let her know I believed that percentage was much lower.




General was extubated successfully using the protocols I shared with the doctors, wisdom God had given me. He was discharged a day later. We arrived home late Wednesday night on April 13th and we celebrated his 6th birthday a few days early on Resurrection Day, since his birthday was on April 20th. God resurrected His only Son for my life, for your life, and for my son’s life. God also miraculously resurrected my son and I am eternally thankful. My faith has grown. My intimacy with the Lord deepened even deeper. The way I saw Him use the people behind the scenes in such a beautiful, synergistic way made me love Him even more. This hospital trip was different than the others. I didn’t feel like I was knocked down, rather lifted up. I felt completely protected. I am holding onto the horns of the altar and I will not let go. I have laid my life down as a sacrifice, I have completely surrendered again and again and I am in a place of complete refuge. God continues to consecrate and purify me from the inside out and I am reaping the blessing of being a child of the Most High.




A special thank you to all the powerful women and men of God who prayed for General and I while we were in the hospital. I am so grateful for my Kingdom family that God has surrounded me with, you know who you are and I wouldn't be able to do what I do without all of you and your obedience to the one and only true God and King, Jesus Christ.






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