October 12 2015

The New Age Deception

NewAgeOn a recent weekend, I had the most amazing getaway with my husband! We had not been away alone, without kids, in about 8 years! As soon as I found out we had a sitter for two whole nights, I started planning our trip. I was unbelievably excited, and I wanted it to be super romantic! After much searching around I decided to book a room at a little inn we went to 10 years ago where I first fell in love with my husband. It is a tiny town where a gorgeous river meets the Pacific Ocean. There are other little towns near by, and so I knew that we would have lots of adventures while we were there.

We got to the room late the first night, almost 9 o’clock, because we stopped to have dinner before checking in. We found a cozy restaurant with views of the river and the ocean, where we watched the sun set. It was a marvelous beginning to a romantic weekend! The room was actually a whole house with two stories. We resided mostly on the bottom floor, where there was a bathroom, kitchen, living room and bedroom. Not to mention a private deck with hot tub. The house was very old, probably about 100 years or more, and didn’t look like it received a lot of upkeep. We were excited nonetheless, because hey, we were alone!! You really can’t beat that, no matter how dirty an old house is.

It is funny because the house was kind of eerie. And when I say funny, I mean if you would have asked me a couple of years ago (before I was Christian) I would have told you that the house seemed haunted. There was just something about that old house that really creeped me out. Not to mention the Buddha statue in the back  yard. The next morning we went to the inn’s restaurant for breakfast. I noticed right away an altar in the corner of the room, complete with a large Buddha statue, crystals, and other such things. It reminded me quite a bit of the alter I had back when I was a witch. There was a sign attached about wanting to spread good vibes because there is enough negative in the world already.

Do not be anxious about anything, but in everything, by prayer and petition, with thanksgiving, present your requests to God. Philippians 4:6

My inner alarm was going off by this point. I knew that being near the ocean there was a chance that we would run into a New Age mindset, but I thought this sleepy little town would not be affected. Oh how wrong I was. This was only the beginning of the New Age movement I would see on our trip. We visited several stores, shops, and boutiques in the surrounding towns, and every single one of them was filled with charms, idols, crystals and other New Age items.

What exactly is the New Age Movement? New Age is a mix of different spiritual and religious practices that each person chooses to adopt for their belief system. It includes things such as witch craft and the occult, shamanism, mysticism, Hinduism, Buddhism, yoga and much more. It is a way to identify who you are spiritually, and to find higher ways of consciousness and thinking, or enlightenment. It’s main purpose is to help a person to connect with their inner being, and with the universe around them. New Age promotes oneness with the universe and the earth, because they are sacred and living beings in which we are connected to, and come from. The New Age movement teaches that everyone is basically good and a part of god. God can be one or many gods, but always an impersonal force that manifests in many ways, such as nature. New Age also teaches that evil does not exist, especially Satan and hell.

There is a way that seems right to a man, but its end is the way to death.

Psalm 14:12

I know this all very well, because I spent a good part of my adult life heavily involved with the occult and New Age. I had no idea that I was even involved in New Age though. It started with my interest in the occult (okay interest is not really the right word. I was a practicing witch.) I became very interested in Eastern Religions and everything about them. I studied Buddhism and Hinduism as I tried to understand higher levels of consciousness and loosing myself to be more god-like. I can’t say I really knew what I was doing, but I really wanted to be connected to the higher power I knew I was a part of. It just wasn’t the Christian God. I tried meditating and placing crystals and gem stones on my chakras and opening my third eye. I tried yoga, astrology, tarot cards and reading the I Ching. I did this alongside of my normal practices of casting spells and performing rituals as a witch.

They exchanged the truth about God for a lie, and worshiped and served created things rather than the Creator—who is forever praised. Amen.

Romans 1:25

When I stopped actively practicing witch craft I still had my New Age thoughts and practices to lean on. I was ever searching for the Truth of what the meaning of life was, and why I was here. I wanted desperately to connect with whatever higher power there was out there. I worshiped the earth and practiced being a good person and taught my kids about being good people. It was so very important to me to be ‘good’ and do rack up good karma points. I wasn’t sure what was waiting for me after death – possibly reincarnation, but probably just my spirit being released back into the energy I came from.

All of this might sound a little out there to some people, but to others a lot of this (or maybe even a little) is going to resonate as truth for you. You have been searching, and you may even already be a Christian. You have never made a deeper connection with God or maybe were not sure if you really believed that Jesus is God. You have been hurt and alone for so long, that you want to find that deeper connection. And very possibly you had no idea that you had been lured in to the New Age Movement. The New Age is very seductive in its ways. It comes to you wrapped in sweet-smelling incense, the health consciousness of yoga, and the beauty of connecting with your higher self or nature. It is so very appealing! Yet I am here to warn you on how dangerous the New Age Movement is.

Once I became a Christian I spent the first few months coming to understand who God the Father is, and what Jesus had done for me. I received the Holy Spirit and He began to do a great work in me, to help me understand the will of God. So I easily got rid of many of my New Age items. It was a process, because it took me a year to realize that the yoga I had been doing was also part of the Eastern Religions and was actually a form of worshiping other gods and inviting the demonic in. I easily got rid of the more obvious items, such as Buddha statues, books on witch craft, and tarot cards.

So if the Son sets you free, you will be free indeed.

John 8:34

It has been two and a half years as I write this that I have come to a glorious relationship with Christ Jesus. He has taken all of the New Age and occult beliefs I instilled in my heart for so long, and redeemed me and filled me with the Truth I so desperately had been searching for! I can’t tell you what comfort I have in the knowledge that I was created for a purpose! By a loving God who knows me by name and loves me deeply enough to die for me. And to know I was created, not evolved from monkeys are some sea sludge (yes I seriously believed that too). And there is no more fear of death for me, but sweet joy in the knowledge that I will be with Jesus in heaven! Hallelujah!

Thanks to the gift of the Holy Spirit in my life, I have been giving great discernment and understanding of the workings of the spiritual realm. Satan meant to destroy me with his New Age deceit, but God has turned it around for my good, by giving me this gifts. I now can see how the enemy has tried to harm me and many others in this world by propagating the New Age lies. The New Age Movement brings death and deception, unlike the Truth that Jesus died to save us from death and hell. What glorious freedom we have in Christ Jesus!

So back to my vacation. In times past I would have been very charmed by the shops with the Hindu gods on the walls, and the incense burning, and the Indian music playing sweetly in the background. I would have felt peaceful and enchanted. Now I felt repulsed for the first time by these things. I could feel the demonic presence emanating from these occult and New Age trinkets and other cursed objects. It only took two steps into a building to register the evil that had been welcomed into each place. At first I was repulsed and afraid. I know how to deal with the demonic and walk in the power and authority Jesus has given me, but it was surprising and overwhelming. But eventually I just felt sad and angry. The New Age Movement has brought death to so many people, while they unwittingly fall prey to its beautifully packaged lies.

But when he, the Spirit of truth, comes, he will guide you into all the truth.He will not speak on his own; he will speak only what he hears, and he will tell you what is yet to come.

John 16:13

cloudsI wanted desperately to help these people, to bring Christ into their lives. Jesus is the only True source of Power! So as I walked through the last of the shops I prayed silently or in a whisper to bring the Holy Spirit into these places. To ask God the Father to come in with His power and authority and make Himself known to these lost souls. We need our Father so badly. We just can’t do this life without Him, and we were not meant to. We were created by Him for a loving relationship. We are so passionately loved by Him, and He wants nothing more than to bring each one of His children into His Kingdom!

If you have fallen prey to any of the lies of the New Age, then rejoice now! Rejoice? Yes! Rejoice because your freedom is now here! It is as simple as renouncing all activity you have done that has purposefully or inadvertently involved you in the occult and New Age. Then repent of these things and ask God to forgive you. Which He has already done! Ask your Father to show you anything else you have done unknowingly to practice New Age beliefs and to cleanse you of them all. Then ask Him to bring you the knowledge and wisdom of His Truth. It really is that easy! Your Heavenly Father is here to walk you through this, by way of the Holy Spirit. He loves you and is not at all angry with you for any of these practices you may have done. On the other hand, He is very saddened to see His children be lured into this horrible deception that leads to the path of destruction.

Thank you Father that you have loved us so much that you sent your only Son to die for us. Thank you Jesus for your work on the cross, and for defeating sin and death for each one of us. Thank you Holy Spirit that you live in each one of us, and lead us in all Truth and wisdom. We love you so much, and we ask for your protection from any ways that the enemy might try to deceive us from this day forward. We pray this in Jesus mighty name. Amen!

See to it that no one takes you captive by philosophy and empty deceit, according to human tradition, according to the elemental spirits of the world, and not according to Christ.

Colossians 2:8

 

September 28 2015

Knowledge Is Not Power

knowledge“Knowledge is power”. This famous quote from Francis Bacon in 1597, has given many men inspiration over the centuries. When I look around our world today, I can see the influence this saying has had. We truly believe knowledge is power. We believe that we gain the most important things out of life through knowledge. We spend most of our childhood attending schools and then pursue higher education as an adult to advance our knowledge. Our knowledge leads us to higher ways of thinking and understanding the world around us and ourselves. It has birthed great philosophers and teachers into this world. We feel accomplished and important the more education we receive. We send our children to learn from the best teachers and schools we can possibly afford. We take out huge loans so we can attend this prestigious schools, causing us to go into debt for years. All because “knowledge is power”.

The fear of the LORD is the beginning of knowledge, but fools despise wisdom and instruction.

Proverbs 1:7

Where does knowledge come from? Let’s go all the way back to the Creation of man. God created Adam from the dust and breathed His life into him. God also gave Adam all of the Garden of Eden to take charge over and care for. In the middle of the Garden was a tree – the Tree of Knowledge of Good and Evil. God’s only command was to not eat of the fruit of this one tree. We cannot be sure how long Adam and Eve lived in the Garden before they tasted of this forbidden fruit, but we do know that while they lived there they walked and talked with God daily. How amazing this must have been for them. What a wonderful relationship, to be so close to our Creator, Our Father, in a way many people have not known, but long for!

Yet the day came when the desire for knowledge became greater than this wonderful relationship with God and the security of the beautiful garden, and the desire for knowledge overtook them. Satan was there with just right words to help Adam and Eve make the decision to ignore God’s heeding to not eat the fruit of Knowledge of Good and Evil. Was it all Satan’s fault? No, he just had great timing. He already knew that in their heart’s. Adam and Eve were longing for knowledge because secretly they felt it would make them better. In their hearts, they felt they were missing out on something – something that God was keeping from them.

“For God knows that when you eat from it your eyes will be opened, and you will be like God, knowing good and evil.”

Genesis 3:5

The blame cannot be laid solely on Adam or solely on Eve. Together both Adam and Eve ate of the fruit. Each of them had this hidden desire for more knowledge. And with this pursuit of knowledge came death in their relationship with God the Father. Somewhere in the hearts they began to believe God was not enough anymore, and that knowledge would bring them power. Satan is the great tempter, but he did not cause them to make this decision. Once Adam and Eve gave in to their temptation their whole world began spinning out of control. The knowledge that they believed would give them great power – that would indeed make them like God; instead gave them fear, confusion, pain and a separation from God. How deeply they must have regretted that decision. And we all have been paying the price for this sin ever since. Yet we have not learned how dangerous the belief that knowledge equals power is.

Don’t we all desire knowledge and believe that it can somehow advance us in our lives? Knowledge of what the future will bring, knowledge of how to handle problems at work or in a relationship, knowledge of technology so we can make our lives easier, and on and on. Yet we fail to see how knowledge in this world can become another temptation to be like God. Knowledge can become an idol. We crave more and more of it. We seek after it constantly, hoping it will bring power and fame and fortune. We seek to follow our own path, only to find that after years of pursuing it we have completely failed at it. That is because it was not the path God put us on.

After spending a long life in the dark, I have come to understand one vital fact. Knowledge of God is the only knowledge that has ever advanced me in this life. I did not know God, but in fact rejected Him. I embraced the knowledge of many other things however. Knowledge of many other religions, gods, knowledge of the world and of man, knowledge from my education full of facts and theories. All this knowledge never gave me Truth, nor did it give me joy or hope. I was completely lost in all this knowledge. I was confused, and constantly searching because I knew something much greater than myself was missing from my life.

God is the creator of and originator of knowledge. Knowledge is not about how much you know, how long you have studied, where you went to school, etc. Knowledge is about knowing God, our Creator. God who created the entire universe and everything in it will give you the knowledge of everything that you will ever need. How often do we spend countless hours seeking knowledge which only complicates our lives? Or confuses us? We were not made to know everything there is to know. We were made to know God. God has given us the Holy Spirit, and the Holy Spirit is our one true source of power. The power that God gives is not like the power of the world. It is true power – divine in nature, full of love and hope, healing and joyous. We were made to walk and live in power, but not the power that comes from worldly knowledge.

For the kingdom of God does not consist in talk but in power.

2 Corinthians 4:20

Have you ever considered that our endless pursuit for knowledge and power has been a distraction of the enemy? While we are so busy seeking to further ourselves in this world, we are falling further away from the work to be done for God’s Kingdom. We are to walk in the power and authority of Christ, heal people, bring life and hope into hearts, cast out and fear and depression, and live a life where miracles and wonders are not the exception, but the expected. How can we have time to live a life like that, a life that truly looks like Christ, when we are too distracted to give time to those that are hurting around us. How many times have you seen a prayer request and just ignored it because you knew you didn’t have time to pray for that person. Or maybe you just didn’t want to put the energy into it because there was something else on your mind? Distractions are everywhere in this world, and they are keeping you from the real power that you are desperately seeking.

rainbowOnce you accept Jesus Christ as your Lord and Savior, you are given the glorious gift of the Holy Spirit. When you have God living inside of you, you are walking with all the knowledge and power that you could ever hope to tape in to. Stop living life by searching through books and questioning teachers, and start living life learning from the greatest teacher you will ever know! The Holy Spirit is there to lead us in wisdom and guide us in Truth. There is no other Truth outside of the Bible and God. Man will always have his interpretation of how he understands God and the world, but that will always just be man’s interpretation. Seek ye the Kingdom of God first, and all these things will be given to you!

“Let not the wise boast of their wisdom
    or the strong boast of their strength
    or the rich boast of their riches,
24 but let the one who boasts boast about this:
    that they have the understanding to know me,
that I am the Lord, who exercises kindness,
    justice and righteousness on earth,
    for in these I delight,”
declares the Lord.

Jeremiah 9:23-24

 

 

 

September 21 2015

All Consuming Love of God

love of godHave you ever felt alone? Unloved? Unworthy? I know I have. I have many moments in life when I felt I was not only unloved, but unlovable. I wanted to be loved, but never felt that I could measure up to being good enough to be loved. I wanted desperately to feel approval from my parents, but never did. I wanted to know that I was valuable and important to someone, but no matter how many times my husband told me I was, I could never believe it. I wanted to look in the mirror and see someone beautiful and worth loving, but I could not even love myself.

I think many of us struggle with feelings of being unlovable and unworthy. Does that make it normal or OK? No, it does not. It is a lie straight from hell, and I am here to tell you so. If you feel that you are unloved, not worth love or unimportant, you are believing one of the most told lies in the history of the world. The originator of that lie is Satan himself. I am here to tell you about something absolutely amazing, something that is so important that it could change the way you live your life from this moment forward. God loves you with an all-consuming love.

“The Lord your God is with you,
    the Mighty Warrior who saves.
He will take great delight in you;
    in his love he will no longer rebuke you,
    but will rejoice over you with singing.”

Zephaniah 3:17

Let that just soak in for a moment as truth. I pray in Jesus name right now that this truth would become your new identity. It is very easy to hear the words “God loves you” and not feel any meaning to them. Or to hear about the love of God and not really understand it. Love is much more than a word or even a feeling. It is an act. The love of God has been pouring out on you since the moment you were conceived in your mother’s womb. Why? Because you are His child, and you were worth paying the price of blood for.

Even when I began to grasp the concept of the love of God, it seemed to hover just far away enough to be out of my grasp. No matter how much I wanted to know the love of God, it seemed still a difficult concept for me. I mean, why would the love of God be so strong that He would actually want to die for me? I am nothing but a mere mortal, not worthy of the attention of affection of God. And even as I began to intellectually understand the love of God, still on a deeper level I could not grasp the true meaning of it. I came to a point where I could say “yes, I know God loves me”, but that was just all in my head. It was a knowledge, not an experience, not a true understanding. It struck me one day that if I did not love myself, then how could I even began to see how great and deep and wide the love of God for me was. My own self-hatred was like a filter in which I was seeing God through. In my mind God loved me, but still saw me as unworthy and tarnished. Oh how very wrong I was. Yet another lie straight from the pit of hell.

Will our human minds ever truly comprehend the vastness of the love of God? I sincerely doubt it. I do however believe our spirit can know far more of the love of God than our minds can. God is not something we experience with worldly knowledge and intelligence. The love of God is something with come to know and experience as we begin to surrender to Him. One thing needs to be very clear though – there is nothing you can do ever, that will make God love you less, or look down on you. No matter how much you mess up, no matter what sin you commit, no matter how hard you rebel against God, His love is still an all-consuming fire for you.

This is how God showed his love among us: He sent his one and only Son into the world that we might live through him. This is love: not that we loved God, but that he loved us and sent his Son as an atoning sacrifice for our sins.

1 John 4:9-10

I  have done a lot of bad things in my life. I have done drugs, had promiscuous sex, gotten tattoos, practiced witch craft, hurt those I love, yelled at my kids and said horrible things to them. In my mind most of  these things qualified me for not being good enough for the love of God. Once I was saved and redeemed there were many things I let go of. I felt truly forgiven and was able to move on. Ironically from what I would consider some of the “worse” sins, drugs, sex, witchcraft. It was the things that I still struggled with like yelling at my kids or having tattoos of things from my past life that I could not move on from. I would look at my tattoo of a pentagram and see shame that would never leave me. How could the love of God penetrate even that? How could the love of God over look my inability to stop yelling at my kids and be patient and kind. Those are really important things in the Bible! Things I just could not do.

I have found it is very easy to walk in guilt and shame. As a matter of fact, I have been conditioned to walk in guilt and shame for the better part of my life. And no, I am not saying I blame my parents for the way they raised me. I blame the real enemy – the one who has been out to get me from day one. Some may say that sounds paranoid, some may say that you shouldn’t give the devil too much attention, but I say when you see a bully trying to keep you down, to call him out. Stop letting the enemy convince you that the sins you are committing right now are causing the love of God to fall just beyond your reach. It is time for it to stop, right here right now.

This is what God says to you: you are beautiful and dearly loved by your Father. The One who created you has always loved you, and nothing will ever cause me to stop loving you. Not one thing. I have been waiting for this very moment that you would draw near to me, and see how beloved you are to me. You are perfect to me. You came from love and were created by Perfection. Never forget where you came from. Draw near to me, dear child, and know YOU ARE LOVED.

And I pray that you, being rooted and established in love,  may have power, together with all the Lord’s holy people, to grasp how wide and long and high and deep is the love of Christ,  and to know this love that surpasses knowledge—that you may be filled to the measure of all the fullness of God.

Ephesians 3:17b-19

Stop dissecting every area of your life where you feel you have made mistakes. Stop looking at your past and seeing how you have failed. You are human, and you will make mistakes. That does not keep the love of God from your life. Nothing can. You can try to shut it out, and believe that you are unimportant. You can walk in shame and let the pain run over you until you are numb. You can believe all the lies that say you are no good. Yet just outside the wall you have built, the love of God is there. Waiting to consume you completely.

Crucifixion-of-Jesus1920I have to say that there have many times in my life that I was abused, usually by someone I cared for or trusted. There were many moments when I cried out “why me?” because I could not understand why I was to suffer so much. And worse yet, why God would let me suffer so much. As I have gone through many inner healing sessions over the past months there is one thing that has become very clear to me. Jesus has always been there, even when I did not see Him, He was there. He did not leave me alone to endure pain or hardship. He did not abandon me because I was making horrible mistakes. No. He was right there, with His angels, doing everything in His power to keep me out of harms way. Unfortunately we have free will and He cannot control that. And the love of God has more than redeemed my pain and my mistakes and indeed made me into a new creation.

So I beg you, stop looking at yourself as sinful and shameful, and start seeing yourself as you truly are – covered by the redeeming blood of Christ Jesus. Bought and paid for with the price of His sacrifice. You are a child of the One True King. You are amazing and special in the sight of your Father. Now tell the enemy to stop lying to you in Jesus name, and seek the face of the One who has died to be with you eternally. Let the love of God consume you, and open yourself to the life He has to offer you. Freedom and love in abundance!

For I am convinced that neither death nor life, neither angels nor demons, neither the present nor the future, nor any powers, neither height nor depth, nor anything else in all creation, will be able to separate us from the love of God that is in Christ Jesus our Lord.

Romans 8:38-39

September 7 2015

Your Testimony – The Pearl of Great Price

If you have ever read my testimony, you know that I was once a practicing witch, a drug addict, sexually promiscuous, and completely rebelled against God. As a matter of fact, I used Jesus name as a swear word. I have been told I have an amazing testimony, and have been thanked many times for sharing it. I really love to share my testimony, because it glorifies God and magnifies His wonderful love and commitment to us. I have also been told by other Christians, that they wished they had a “better testimony”. That their testimony was very boring and uninteresting. Well let me tell you right now, that is a lie straight from the devil.

And this is the testimony, that God gave us eternal life, and this life is in his Son. 1 John 5:11

Every believer in Jesus Christ has a testimony, and every testimony is valuable and important for the Kingdom of God. It does not matter whether or not you grew up in church, or came to Christ as an adult. It does not matter if you went to church and fell completely away and came back again, or if you have always had a faithful and steady relationship with Jesus. It doesn’t matter if you have been faithful, but completely caught up in sin and been imprisoned and miserable because of it, or if you have had somewhat of a perfect and blessed life. This is your testimony, your story, and it is by this testimony that you have the most wonderful gift you can ever give. Your testimony is the pearl of great price.

“The kingdom of heaven is like treasure hidden in a field. When a man found it, he hid it again, and then in his joy went and sold all he had and bought that field. “Again, the kingdom of heaven is like a merchant looking for fine pearls. When he found one of great value, he went away and sold everything he had and bought it. Matthew 13:44-46

Your testimony did not end the day that you accepted Jesus Christ as your Savior. No, my dear, that was only the beginning of the wonderful work that God began to do in your life! It was that pivotal moment that was to be the launching point for many other amazing works that God has and will do through and for you! And it is those stories, that testimony, that you must dare to uncover for the world to hear. Do not leave this treasure to remain hidden in the field! Leave it open for all to see, because through it you do not know who will find great value in it. Value enough to sell everything and give themselves over to the King who first gave this gift to you.

“Return to your home, and declare how much God has done for you.” And he went away, proclaiming throughout the whole city how much Jesus had done for him. 2 Timothy 1:18

We are here on this earth to usher in the Kingdom of God. Within us lies a storehouse of treasures to be shared and freely given to the world. Love, joy, hope, peace, and our testimony. Do you freely share your testimony of what God has done for you? Do you let your life be an open book, to show the good works of our Heavenly Father? Or are you ashamed of your life? Afraid of what people will know of you? Of what they may think? Jesus hung on the cross two thousand years ago open and exposed before the world, humiliated and laughed at, and He did it for you. He let go of His own will, His own shame and pain, there on that cross, and He did it because He knew ultimately it would glorify our Father. Do not let the enemy continue to lie to you and fill your head and heart with shame and guilt. There is no condemnation in Christ Jesus! Guilt is not from God, but from the enemy. He has come to steal, kill, and destroy you! Do not let him steal the glory of God’s mighty work in your life.

And they have conquered him by the blood of the Lamb and by the word of their testimony, for they loved not their lives even unto death. Revelation 12:1

So I ask you this, dear brothers and sisters, what has God done for you? Has He freed you from a particular sin? Or blessed you with a wonderful family? Or bestowed you with great gifts such as a job, a house, a car? Has He worked miracles in your life, saving you when you were desperate? There is so much to sing praises about for our wonderful God! We must rejoice in all He has done for us, because there in our praises lies power! Power to move forward into the work Jesus has for us in His Kingdom!

I will shout from the rooftops and proclaim the good favor that Jesus has given me, all the days of my life! Maybe your testimony does not seem as radical or life altering as mine – or maybe it is. Whatever it may be, I urge you, no I plead with you, share it! When we share the testimony that God has given us it is a mighty weapon against the enemy! He cannot stand for us to glorify God, and it takes away the power of the enemy and releases the Kingdom of God, right here on earth. What a wonderful joy that is!

testimonyYou may be asking, how do I share my testimony? Just be open and willing, and let the Holy Spirit guide you. You do not need to do anything special to share your testimony, other than to ask God to help you do so. He will bring the right people into your life at the perfect time. He will help guide you in the perfect words to say for each individual situation He places you in. Your testimony may sound a little different every time you tell it. I have told my testimony many times and I felt like a horrible failure! I just knew I sounded awful or ridiculous, but that was another lie! God works amazing things through our testimony, and I promise you that you will greatly bless others by sharing it.

My mouth will tell of your righteous acts, of your deeds of salvation all the day, for their number is past my knowledge. With the mighty deeds of the Lord God I will come; I will remind them of your righteousness, yours alone. O God, from my youth you have taught me, and I still proclaim your wondrous deeds. So even to old age and gray hairs, O God, do not forsake me, until I proclaim your might to another generation, your power to all those to come. Psalm 71:15-18

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August 24 2015

Alcohol Is Not A Sin

alcoholWhen I was about 16 or 17 I started drinking alcohol. My parents don’t really know this, but I waited one night when they were in bed and sneaked into a little cupboard where they kept hard alcohol. My parents did not really drink alcohol at this time anymore and it was probably years old. I reasoned that if I took just a little from every bottle it would be hard to detect any missing from the half empty containers. I combined them all in one cup. I think there was bourbon, scotch, whiskey and vodka, but it’s hard to say considering I knew nothing about alcohol at that time. To be honest with you, I just wanted to get as messed up as possible. You see, I was very depressed. I wanted to escape from reality and alcohol was easy access to an altered reality.

Alcohol was not as easy to get as other drugs, and it was not my most favorite high, so I didn’t drink as often as I partook in other substances. If ever it was available or offered though, I would drink it. Drinking alcohol is getting high and I wanted to get high. Drinking alcohol brings on a flood of joy and positive emotions at first. You feel good, sometimes you even feel great. You get more social and lose your inhibitions. All your problems seem to melt away and it’s all fun and happy. At least at first. That is unless you drink too much and you end up sick. Having a hangover is comparable to sea sickness. It is awful, yet somehow it never stopped me from drinking alcohol again on another occasion.

No temptation has overtaken you except what is common to mankind. And God is faithful; he will not let you be tempted beyond what you can bear. But when you are tempted, he will also provide a way out so that you can endure it. 1 Corinthians 10:13

I continued to drink alcohol over the years of my life, especially if it was in a social setting. When everyone else was doing it, I felt added pressure to do it. It was a social thing. People get a little weird when they are drinking and having a good time and you aren’t. You don’t want to feel like the odd one. Not that I didn’t want to, but there is just something about that added pressure to keep drinking, even though you know the end results. Once I start drinking alcohol, I don’t stop until I can’t drink anymore. And people love to keep refilling your drink or handing you another beer. It is kind of like an endless trap.

Alcohol is really poisonous to our bodies, especially when taken in for a long period of time in large quantities. I learned that the hard way. I remember going to a bar many years later and having a shot of vodka. I had to choke down the vomit right there on my bar stool. My body did not want that poison in it, but I wanted the effects of it. I wasn’t going to just let an expensive drink come back up. And then I had another shot. Disgusting you say? I agree. I knew I was an alcoholic, and I thought I had gotten a handle on it. Reality proved to be different though, because I could never turn down a drink.

Do you not know that your bodies are temples of the Holy Spirit, who is in you, whom you have received from God? You are not your own; you were bought at a price. Therefore honor God with your bodies. 1 Corinthians 6:19-20

It wasn’t until I started going to church and learning about Jesus Christ that I started feeling like maybe I should quit drinking. It wasn’t like I was drinking all the time or anything. We would buy a pack of beer and it would sit for weeks before we drank 1 or 2 each. I have always been quite adamant about not drinking alcohol in front of my children. I remember being a child and my parents would have friends over and I have memories of beer bottles and wine glasses littering the living room table in the early hours of the morning when I would wake up. I don’t have a big memory of them actually drinking, yet somehow the knowledge of it has invaded my subconscious.

Getting high has been a huge part of my adult life. It is only about a year ago that I realized why I desired to get high and drunk. We are made to get high. Yes you just read that right. We are made to get high – just not on drugs and alcohol. You see those things are a counterfeit of what we were made to have – a Holy Spirit high. We certainly don’t need to call it a high, but drugs and alcohol are a cheap imitation of the amazing and wonderful experience of being filled up with the Holy Spirit. Being filled with the Holy Spirit brings intense feelings of joy, ecstasy, love and so much more! Your spirit is ecstatic at being so connected to your awesome Creator! It is like finally experiencing wholeness. The evil one wants to keep us away from this intense Holy Spirit filled kind of life, so he slid a counterfeit in to keep us away.

Do not get drunk on wine, which leads to debauchery. Instead, be filled with the Spirit. Ephesians 5:18

Instead of seeking out God, we seek out drugs and alcohol. We convince ourselves that it is just to be social or just for fun. We tell ourselves it is the comfort and escape from our pain we need. When all the while God is right there sorrowfully watching us do damage to our body and mind when we could bring it all to our Father! The Holy Spirit is our ticket to heaven on earth! He has been placed inside of us so that we may be comforted by Him when life has brought us down. He has the joy of the Lord to give us, that would elevate our spirits out of the depths of our despair.

The day my husband and I were baptized we both had all desire to do any drugs or drink alcohol completely removed from us. 100%. That was just over two years ago as I write this, and neither of us has even thought about wanting to drink again since that day. It was an absolute miracle. I can’t really tell you why God took that away from us, because I know many people who struggle with addiction. I just thank and Praise God for what He has done. It took probably a year after that before I had my first real Holy Spirit encounter. That is not to say that it took that long before God gifted me the Holy Spirit, but that was when I first came to experience the presence of the Holy Spirit in a way that was very tangible. At first I was overwhelmed by His presence and even a bit afraid. But really being in the presence of the Holy Spirit is exciting and energizing and just fills you with love. Once I experienced Him I knew without a doubt how the enemy how used drugs and alcohol to deceive me for so many years. And what I had been missing out on! Absolutely a million times better than any high I ever had with mind altering substances.

But you will receive power when the Holy Spirit comes on you; and you will be my witnesses in Jerusalem, and in all Judea and Samaria, and to the ends of the earth.” Acts 1:8

drunkI really feel that the use of drugs and alcohol can become a block to our experience with God. It has great potential to interfere with our relationship with God. Like many other things, we easily become enslaved to addiction to these substances. Where once we thought we had control over it, we suddenly find that it has become our master. There is only one Master that we should ever allow ourselves to submit ourselves to, and that is Jesus Christ. We must be careful to take our whole selves before Him and ask what His will is for our lives. Jesus only wants the very best for us, and will always guide and direct our paths with love.

Be sober-minded; be watchful. Your adversary the devil prowls around like a roaring lion, seeking someone to devour. 2 Peter 5:8