Christian Life,  My Salvation

Conformed To This World

worldYesterday I had the most amazing experience. As I was driving I was praying and worshiping God. The sky was bright and the clouds were painted across it. The world felt alive and it was as if heaven itself had opened up and was signing praises to God. I was filled with a sense of awe, reverence and love. In that moment I knew that God was literally everywhere. Then I realized, this is exactly what is going on around us, every day, every minute. All of creation sings to us the glory of its Creator. God pours out His infinite love into His creation, embracing us and speaking to us, constantly. Intellectually I knew it was true, but now for the first time this truth became real to me.

Praise the LORD, all his works everywhere in his dominion. Praise the Lord, my soul.   Psalm 103:22    

During most of my adult life I was a self-proclaimed pagan. That meant something to me – a lover of nature, a worshiper of gods and goddesses, a friend of the earth. I was a witch and proud of it, but first and foremost I was pagan. Wild, free and in tune with the universe. I was obsessed with the moon and the ocean. I literally worshiped them. I would sit in my backyard on nights when the moon was full, and bask in its glow. The moon was a goddess – alive and beautiful. I would pray to it and speak to it. The power and the magnificence were so real and glorious!

I would often take trips to the beach. The power of the ocean was staggering. To behold it was almost more than I could bear. The crashing of the waves became one with my soul. I just knew that it was there that the first life crawled out into this world. The primordial ooze that slowly over millions of years evolved into who we now were. I would sit and just enjoy the sound of the waves and know that there was something so much bigger than me out there.

For his invisible attributes, namely, his eternal power and divine nature, have been clearly perceived, ever since the creation of the world, in the things that have been made. So they are without excuse. Romans 1:20

It was not just my worship of the moon and the ocean, I was enamored with this world. The earth was Mother Goddess. She was our home – sacred and alive. She had feelings and could consciously act. She took care of us and punished us when needed. With a flick of her mighty hand she could cause earthquakes and hurricanes to put us in our places. Yes, it was very real to me. Animals were equal too, if not greater than humans. Humans were meant and harmed our mother earth and our animals friends. I not only studied the occult, but many other religions. Animals are often revered in other religions or were symbols of power and greatness. My deep love for the earth and all its life was what defined me. I would balk at the thought of animal abuse, but not even bat an eye at abortion.

For although they knew God, they neither glorified him as God nor gave thanks to him, but their thinking became futile and their foolish hearts were darkened.  Although they claimed to be wise, they became fools  and exchanged the glory of the immortal God for images made to look like a mortal human being and birds and animals and reptiles. Romans 1:21-23

Life to me was about freedom – about being who you are. Letting your soul shine through and expressing it to its fullest. Diversity was beautiful the way it came through so many people. Gay, bisexual, transgender – I celebrated it. Love is something you cannot change! You are who you are, and you love who you love. And love is about two souls uniting and becoming one. I actually got into a huge argument with my Grandmother who was a devout Mormon. I had never spoken to her like that in all my life! Yet I knew it was true and I was willing to stand up for itI knew and had friends who were gay or transgender. I even questioned my own sexuality for a while and experimented with being bisexual. I was pretty sure everyone was born bisexual and that monogamy was a forced concept. (That is until I got married myself.)

Therefore God gave them over in the sinful desires of their hearts to sexual impurity for the degrading of their bodies with one another. 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 1:24-25

Life was free and religion was confining. Christianity was like a prison. Nothing but rules and condemnation. I didn’t want to hear that I was a sinner going to hell – I didn’t even believe in hell! Or Satan. He was just another myth to me. Just like that Christian God. And Jesus? He was just another swear word. It was funny to make fun of His name. It meant nothing to me. I literally knew nothing of who He even was. Some guy who lived a long time ago? It didn’t matter to me. The earth and all her creatures – that is what mattered to me. And my family. The rest of people of the world could fall apart for all I cared. My essence was going to be released into the atmosphere when I died along with all the other dead spirits anyway. Then we would go back to where we came from. The great universe which spawned us in the first place.

Had I rejected God? No way. I had only rejected the Christian God. I wholeheartedly believed in many gods and goddesses. I believed in the great connection all life had. I believed I was a part of something greater than myself and certainly there was a god. Just not that God that was in the Bible. That God was nothing but a lie. And I had read books on witch craft and its ancient roots to prove it. Christian’s had stolen everything from us pagans. I had experience real life through nature and my practices with witch craft. I was sure that I knew that truth, and there was no changing my mind.

It wasn’t until I began to know the Living God and read His Word in the Bible that I began to see how wrong I was. I had so many questions at first – how could God have created everything in just 7 days?? The earth is millions of years old – there is proof! How could there have really been a great flood? I mean, that is impossible! Yet I delved into knowing God and who He really was with all my heart. I had been seeking truth for so very long. I yearned for truth like a deer that pants for water. After so many years I was still thirsty and never satisfied with anything I had found.

My soul thirsts for God, for the living God. When can I go and meet with God? Psalm 42:2

The moment I found the Truth the weight of the world was lifted from me and the veil was removed from my eyes. I knew with every ounce of my being that this God I was learning about was indeed the only God. The One True Living God. That there were no other gods, no goddesses. That every word in the Bible was true. It didn’t all make sense how it could have happened, but any doubt of the Truth of the Bible was erased from me completely. I got on my knees and gave my whole life over to God. From that day forward I literally did not see the world in the same way. It was like I had new and fresh eyes. It was like I had been living with glasses on that were rose-colored or muddying up everything I saw, but now everything was clear as could be. The world was a completely different place than what I had been living in. Somehow I had given myself over to beliefs of how the world is and what life is, but all these things were lies. I was in shock at how many deceptions I had fallen for.

You belong to your father, the devil, and you want to carry out your father’s desires. He was a murderer from the beginning, not holding to the truth, for there is no truth in him. When he lies, he speaks his native language, for he is a liar and the father of lies. John 8:44

chainHow could I have believed all these false things for so long? Evolution, abortion, homosexuality, feelings create who you are and are the most important thing. And so much more! But anyone can fall prey to these lies. Everyone is susceptible. It started all the way back at the creation of man, when Adam and Eve listened to the first lie and believed it. They believed it, because they wanted to. Because it felt good and it looked good. Because they wanted to see what life was like when they were in charge, not God. And so it has gone all through the ages, that man has walked away from the protection of God and given themselves over to what looks good in the moment. Man has listened to the serpent tell them they don’t need God; that God doesn’t know what He is talking about anyway. And when you don’t already have a relationship with the Living God, oh how easy it is to believe the lies.

Satan wants nothing more than to tear us away from God. And we make it so easy for him to do so. The fruit looks tasty, and if someone I love says it’s OK, then it must be. Right Adam? God’s Word has stood the test of time. His warnings to us to stay away from pagan practices, magic, homosexuality, idolatry etc. were to protect us, not to control us. The Israelites fell into these practices over and over again. They replaced the living God for idols, they stopped teaching their children about His grace and mercy, they forgot the fact that He rescued them from slavery. This has all been laid out for us so we too can remember the dangers that lurk in this world. Yet day after day we sell ourselves over to slavery.

“I am the vine; you are the branches. If you remain in me and I in you, you will bear much fruit; apart from me you can do nothing.” John 15:5

We are being held captives by the traditions of man and the deceptions of this world. What do we do? We love. We have compassion. We pray. We work side by side with Jesus to free the captives. Yes you. You can help free the captives, starting with yourself. What lies of the world have you let creep into your heart? In what ways have you let the enemy tell you that God is wrong and the Bible doesn’t apply to you? Be set free and begin to start to see a broken and dying world around you. In this world the demons of hell have been let loose to play. Yet not so we should run and fear, but so we can learn to battle them and win! Jesus has overcome the world! Take His hand and ask Him how you can help speak the truth in love and pray for the oppressed. Ask Him to give you His compassion and love for others.

I ask you this, if you were to die tomorrow, would you have lived a life that glorified God or that glorified man? When you go before the judgement throne of God, will you know that you lived your life to point others to Jesus? Nobody is perfect, and you are not saved by your works, but faith without deeds is dead. God has a special calling on your life. A way that you can experience His power and glory in His Kingdom! Whether it be to do mission trips abroad, or help the homeless, or pray for the lost – whatever it is – just ask God to show you what He has for you. Life with Jesus is so much more exciting than anything else I have ever experienced. To know Him and partner with Him in this world is almost like heaven on earth. And it is available here and now for all of us.

For everyone who has been born of God overcomes the world. And this is the victory that has overcome the world—our faith. 1 John 5:4-5