Wednesday, December 21, 2011

Not For Sale: demoralizing the builders

Here is the church.
Here is the steeple.
Open the doors.
See all the people.

 Today, a spirit of confusion is rampant in our country, our schools, and our families. I believe that the American church is experiencing systematic demoralization and attack. The children of God are being demoralized by Satan himself. 

de·mor·al·ize

  [dih-mawr-uh-lahyz, -mor-]  Show IPA
verb (used with object), -ized, -iz·ing.
1.
to deprive (a person or persons) of spirit, courage,discipline, etc.; destroy the morale of: The continuous barragedemoralized the infantry.
2.
to throw (a person) into disorder or confusion; bewilder: Wewere so demoralized by that one wrong turn that we were lost forhours.
3.
to corrupt or undermine the morals of.

Here is the church.
Here is the steeple.
Open the doors.
See, the demoralized people.

Today, my heart is broken for the confusion that our society has fallen prey to. We must choose to be the Daniel's of our time-unwilling to compromise in the face of political correctness or oppression. Time pivots and the hand of God is soon to swoop down and deliver His children from this Earth. 

Here is the church.
Here is the steeple.
Open the doors.
Soon, there will be no more people.

When Nehemiah set out to rebuild Jerusalem's walls, it says that his enemies continuously tried to demoralize the builders. They simply attempted to stop the work. They tried extortion, accusation, physical threats, confusion, and yet the wall continued to be built.


A few weeks ago, I talked about our minds being our very own Achilles Heel. 

As Christians, battles are won and lost in our minds. 

We must understand that our feelings can be manipulated by people, culture, television, and even the devil himself. 
My mind is not for sale. 
Is anyone with me?
We do not have to accept every thought that floats through our minds as our own. As a matter of fact, the Bible specifically says "take every thought captive to the obedience of Christ" in 2 Corinthians 10:5. Do you know what that means for you and I? It means that no matter how bad the battle rages in your mind, you can choose your thoughts
Joyce Meyer says "right feelings follow right actions." I believe this with my whole heart. 

If your thought-life is unstable, powerless, depressing, or fearful, then you must consider that your condition could be the result of an arrow, a poisonous spear of deception, launched strategically at your mind! 

When you begin to understand that Christ can redeem every negative thought, feeling, or demoralized moment in your life--then you will begin to experience the peace that is only found in Christ Jesus. 
Do you know that one of Satan's greatest tactical weapons is a spirit of confusion.  It is a process of demoralizing a person to the point that they can no longer rationalize correctly. When we are God's children, yet we are not living in victory over sin, it is a good indication that we are being demoralized (or thrown into confusion) by the Enemy. Remember, he cannot tell the truth, for the truth is not in him. Are you being accused tonight? Are you being lied to about your life, your health, your marriage, your identity? 

{Lord, Jesus, I come to you tonight on behalf of my brothers and sisters in Christ and I command in Jesus name that a spirit of confusion be removed from our households. Your word says in 1 Corinthians 14:33 that You are "not the author of confusion, but of peace." Lord, we know that we do not war against flesh and blood, but against the rulers and principalities of this present darkness. Reveal to us where we have been deceived by a spirit of confusion. If we have given up ground in our minds to Satan willingly or foolishly, forgive us and set us free. In Jesus name, show us how to let the peace of Christ dwell in our hearts and minds.}

Monday, December 19, 2011

500 containers of $1.80 guacamole

Tonight I had a choice. 

We all get choices.

Sometimes, we are wise.

Sometimes, we are like the foolish man who built his house upon the sand. We make foolish decisions and we build our lives on sand. And the waves & wind come and beat upon our house, and as if in slow motion our world washes away with the tide.

After 12 hours of Christmas shopping, I sat down alone in Chipotle to eat my dinner. I got my bowl just the way I liked it. I got out a pen and paper and started writing and re-writing all the presents I had bought. I also felt guilty. Even though I had tried to be wise, somehow I had gone way overboard with my spending. 

Then, a man sat at the end of my long stainless table. 

He had a bag of chips and one, small $1.80 container of guacamole. I wondered if I was looking into the eyes of a homeless man. He was dirty and unshaven. His clothes looked like they hadn't been cleaned in a long time. He ate two bites and started towards the door. Immediately, I watched the girl across from me spring out of her seat. She ran towards him and called out. They talked in hushed words at the door and she brought him back into the line. 

She bought him a meal.

I looked at my list and looked at my half-eaten bowl and realized that my whole day was folly. With what I had spent that day, I could have bought that man 500 containers of $1.80 guacamole and chips. 

Another woman handed the stranger a wad of cash.

I packed my list up and shoved everything into my purse. I got some money out and approached the man too. 

We all get choices.

I handed the weathered old gentlemen some cash and told him Merry Christmas. He was polite and grateful. 

He told me thank you. 

I should have been the one thanking him. 

"Do not forget to entertain strangers, for by so doing some have entertained angels without knowing it." Hebrews 13:2
 











Monday, December 12, 2011

Feelings

"Right feelings always follow right actions." Joyce Meyer
I think she says it best. 



Friday, December 9, 2011

The Junk Drawer

Yesterday, I hated my junk drawer. 
We have a love/hate relationship.
Me and my junk drawer.
I love my junk drawer on days when I can hide things in it. Doesn't everyone have one? Maybe it's not ever a drawer. Maybe it's a closet or a room in your house. It's the place where all those things that don't ever seem to find a permanent home end up. Our junk drawer is filled to the brim. It started out looking so nice. It had some appliance manuals and school supplies in it. 
Then, one day a bag of foam letters exploded in it or shall I say a triplet dumped the whole bag out.
Sigh.
From then on it was all downhill; the manuals got crumpled, the pencils spilled all over the place, and erasers got thrown around like confetti. Then, somehow, Hello Kitty ductape came to the rescue and helped every resident of the junk drawer stick together.
Sigh.
I normally love that junk drawer. I can hide things in it. I can slide manuals and stuff into it. But, yesterday...
Yesterday, I hated the junk drawer.
Yesterday I needed something from it.
Yesterday, I needed the Foam letter Y.
Turns out, there was only one Foam Y in the entire junk drawer and our school project only lacked a foam Y. 
Do you know how much I hated that junk drawer yesterday. The only thing I hated more than the junk drawer was all the junk I had to pull out of it to find one, little, foam Y. 
Y me?
We got the project finished. 
We found one Y.
Then, it dawned on me, how our minds can be just like that junk drawer. We love the fact that people can't see what we think. But, God sees. He sees straight through our brains and right into our hearts. He hears every thought and knows the intent of the heart. We also hate our junk drawers when we can't control them. See, when we let junk live and take up residence in our minds; it only stays nice and neat for a season. 
Junk will be junk.
The junk in your mind goes straight to your heart and eventually spills out of your mouth. We might be able to conceal it for a little while, but it always catches up to us. 
Think about your mind today.
 Is it nice and neat? 
A place of peace where Christ comfortably dwells? 
Or is it filled up with junk? Fear? Envy? Hate? Insecurity?
Let's pray about it together. 

Friday, December 2, 2011

The Battle for Your Mind

Sometimes things don't line up like I expect. 
I get disappointed.
I get frustrated.
Take loyalty for example:
I am extremely loyal when it comes to my family, my friends, and my business relationships. 
Loyalty is a good thing.
But, a loyal heart scorned can get really ugly.
Soon, one of my best traits can send me spiraling into a really ugly inner-dialogue when someone doesn't return the loyalty.
I digress.
Suddenly, I'm bitter because I felt someone didn't treat me like I thought they should.
Then, the good trait becomes my Achilles Heel.
It kills peace. It kills productivity. It kills the present and threatens the future. 
Internal Combustion.
We smile and tell the world "We are doing great!" 
We put up our best pictures on Facebook and share how wonderful our lives are via Twitter. 
But, inside we are a mess, and worst off– we can hide it for a season.

I don't know about you, but Satan's not getting my mind.
It's a decision you and I have to make as our feet hit the floor every morning. 
It's something I fail at greatly, but strive for daily.
There is no easy button, but there is a solution:
Saturation.
It's a process of renewing our minds  continually with the word of God.
{If you turn to my discipline, then I will pour out my Spirit on you and teach you my words.}
Proverbs 1:23

We have a choice each day to have the mind of Christ–to put on the helmet of Salvation, or to let Satan rule our thinking. 

{The battle for your mind is one of the bloodiest battles you will ever face as a Christian.}

Today, I want you to see the tactical spiritual warfare for what it is:
If Satan can't have your soul, he's lost you eternally. However, if he can have your mind, he has your focus, your joy, your productivity– so he ultimately has you. 

{As a Christian, your mind is your Achilles Heel.}

He'll take any inch you give him; he'll twist, confuse, contort, lie, and destroy you from the inside out. Our help comes from the Lord and He is anxious to deliver us mentally, emotionally, and spiritually today. 

Phillipians 4:8 
{Finally, brethren, whatever is true, whatever is honorable, whatever is right, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is of good repute, if there is any excellence and if anything worthy of praise, dwell on these things.}






Tuesday, November 22, 2011

Home

Today I am blessed to be a guest blogger on my friend Tammy's blog. Or should I say, "I'm tickled pink!" If you click over, you'll see what I mean. Life has been moving at a pretty rapid pace for our family these days. I am trying not to let the "busyness" of fall roll over me. Sometimes, you just have to purposefully pause. God is good, is He not? Hope you will pause and enjoy my post today entitled, Home



Friday, November 11, 2011

Crying in my Wheaties

If you are struggling with your diet, the gluten-free lifestyle, food allergies, or just having a good 'ole game of tug-of-war with your food...

...hop over to Finding Heaven Today with Jenn and check out my guest post "Crying in my Wheaties."

Wednesday, November 9, 2011

Caped Crusaders + their Southern Belle Sidekick

It looks like our community can rest safely at night knowing these guys are around!

Tuesday, November 8, 2011

Disclaimer: Why I smelled at church on Sunday

I'm not so sure if this post should be A) public knowledge or B) tagged under 'Playroom' or 'Dirty Laundry' for it was surely some dirty laundry.


It all started Sunday morning with I know you'll be shocked a late start. Yet, despite my waking up 30 minutes late for church I managed to get out the door with make-up, hair straightened, and my favorite pair of black winter boots. Yes, it was cold in Texas for like a day. I was sans hubby and 1 triplet, but they were going to catch up with us at church. I can't remember why that happened either. So, I crawl into the car and notice that my car smells realllyyyy funky.

Moms know.

It's that combination between a hot dog and a dirty penny and no that's not Texas slang for anything. My car stunk. And it had not smelled the night before. There is evidence of life in my car at all times: jackets, old Sunday school papers, the occasional wrapper from Sonic, but I keep a pretty nice smelling car. And gratefully leather seats don't soak up spills whew!

I turn on the air and roll down the windows to make the smell go away.

At this point, I'm wondering if I'm crazy and maybe the smell was breakfast and in my head. I get out, check out the contents of the car and set my phone on the hood. I turn on the car and when I blast the air....the smell multiplied as fast as the dirty laundry does in my house. I put the car in reverse and slam on the brakes as I see a car pulling out behind me while I watch my cell phone fly across the hood.

And whose husband insisted that my phone doesn't need insurance. Oh yeah, that would be mine.

Baby A & C and I all start to gag.

Thankfully, no one throws up as Baby A has been known to trigger buckets of throw-up when she simply thinks about something gross. 


We arrive at church.

I stink.


I figure all I need is a little time. Time was my friend. However, time was not on my side as we were already 5 minutes late. To make matters worse, I was visiting a new sunday school class for the first time.

I head to the bathroom to let myself air out praying all the way that God would take away my smell!


 This smell had some serious staying power. 


I head to class. I arrive into a very intimate setting of ladies. Of all days... The only lady in the whole class I know comes to sit right next to me. Gosh. I didn't even know what to say, cause I knew I totally wreaked!

I lean in and whisper, "I'm sorry you're sitting next to me, I totally smell like food for some reason." And she just giggles while I'm sure she was quietly throwing up in her mouth.


Sunday school ends and I dodge as many people as I can to get to my seat. But, lo and behold my two new friends head over to give me a big hug (Sorry girls). I shake some hands and pray that no one sits next to me.

Enter in husband. 


I immediately go to explaining under my breath "I smell like a hot dog and a dirty penny and I cannot figure out why. Something is in my car or maybe a mouse died in my air conditioning vent or there is some penicillin growing on my floor board! I don't know but I stink so bad I cannot stand it myself!"

Husband holds nose and leans far away. 


Thanks, yeah thank you for YOUR UNDIVIDED LOVE AND SUPPORT! 


The service marched forward. I think I threw up in my mouth and knew everyone around me could smell me. There was just something about that smell. With time, it only grew worse, not better.

Once the service ended I told Robb to get the kids. I didn't want them to smell like me, even though I feared for their smell through sunday school too. I practically ran out of the sanctuary so that no one else would want to chat or hug although I am usually all about verbal and nonverbal communication alike.

As I pull out of the parking lot, Robb and the kids are heading to their car. And being the LOVING, SUPPORTIVE, MATURE person that he is, he has the children yell at the top of their lungs...

"YOU STINK!"

...as I bolted from the parking lot. Thanks guys - love you TOO!

When I get home, I began cleaning out the big blue beast. It wasn't so bad. And I still couldn't figure out why it smelled so bad. I set my keys in the seat and started lugging jackets, old Sunday school papers, and the occasional wrapper from Sonic to our big blue trash can. Why our neighborhood only allows one trash can, I am still not sure. Don't they know who we are? Anyhoo...

Then, I spot it.

A double-knotted Wal-Mart sack.


Now, if you are a mom and you have double-knotted a Wal-Mart sack, then we all know what that means. It means...dirty underwear. It means that the kind of incident that occurred happened at someone else's home who did NOT WANT THOSE THINGS IN THEIR WASHER. And in the name of thriftiness cause you throw away the REALLY bad ones already you get a Wal-Mart sack and you bag them up. You bring them home and you contaminate your own washer. Yes, I raise boys! From time to time, that little, double-knotted sack gets left...in....the...car.

And apparently, because I love to draw conclusions, if you leave a sack of streaked laundry in your car for 4 days ...it will smell the equivalent of a hot dog and a dirty penny. And so will you. Just a little word of warning.

To everyone that follows me on Facebook, somewhere before the discovery of doublet-knotted Wal-Mart sack with a surprise inside but very unlike a Happy Meal  is how my keys also found their way into the big, blue trash can.

Happy Tuesday Everyone! Happy Tuesday! And to whoever suggested it, you are so right, they need an APP FOR THAT!

Wednesday, November 2, 2011

In The Wilderness

The Israelites wandered in the wilderness for 40 years.
{That's}
...480 months
...2086 weeks
...14,600 days
...350,400 hours
...21,024,000 minutes
and 1,261,440,000 seconds.

{After the death of Moses the Lord's servant, the Lord spoke to Joshua son of Nun, who had served Moses: "Moses My servant is dead. Now you and all the people prepare to cross over the Jordan to the land I am giving the Israelites. I have given you every place where the sole of your foot treads, just as I promised Moses. Your territory will be from the wilderness and Lebanon to the great Euphrates River- all the land of the Hittites- and west to the Mediterranean Sea. No one will be able to stand against you as long as you live. I will be with you, just as I was with Moses..."} Joshua 1:1-5a

Are you wandering through the wilderness today? 
Your promised land might not be as far away as you think. 
Let's trust God today to lead us there. May we be willing to examine our hearts to make certain we are on the right road. 
{"...I will not leave you or forsake you."} Joshua 1:5b


Tuesday, November 1, 2011

Christian Witchcraft


Questions and Answers with Kristine McGuire Part 2

Q1: You mention in your testimony that you were co-mingling your Christian faith with witch-craft. Do you believe this is common in Christianity and other religions? Ever run any stats?

 I have never run the stats but I think it would be a good idea. No. I listen to what people are saying, the teaching made available in books or from pulpits. I've noticed the influx of mysticism into church thought (Eastern practices such as meditation, yoga). The prominence given to experiences over sound biblical teaching. The interest in the supernatural or paranormal (Christian Ghost Hunting groups are on the rise, Christians are going to mediums, or acting as mediums and psychics).The idea of being "spiritual but not religious" seems to allow some Christians to incorporate many beliefs into their own.

Q2: What has God shown you since you left your pagan roots about the danger of mixing light and darkness?
His mercy is never ending. He will chase us high and low, drawing us back to Him. The enemy is very good at counterfeiting God's good gifts (especially the spiritual ones). He put warnings about those practices in His word for our protection because nothing good comes from mixing the things of God with the things of the enemy or the world. 

Q3: I listened to the audio file on your website, wow! Can you tell us a little more about how you felt when you heard that recording for the first time?
Stunned. As I heard the scream (upon realizing what I was listening to) I thought "this is straight up scripture stuff. I'm listening as a demon responds to the name of JESUS!". It kind of freaked me out. And I'd seen and heard a lot of strange and scary things over the years but especially as a medium and ghost hunter. This topped them all in the significance of what it represented. 

Q4: I know my readers are probably wondering this: how do you biblically explain the presence of ghosts? Or do you?
I've actually written several articles on this subject. I'll share what I wrote most recently in "Why Are There Ghosts?":

The Bible clearly teaches that human beings do not remain on Earth after death. InHebrews 9:27, we learn "…each person is destined to die once and after that comes judgment…". Those who have accepted Christ as Savior enter into God's presence (2 Corinthians 5:6-8Philippians 1:23). Those who have not enter a place of punishment for sin, separated from God (Matthew 25:46Luke 16:22-24). 
The dead do not remain among the living.
The Bible does teach there are spirit beings who can and do interact with our physical world. Angels are spirit beings created by God to serve Him. They are holy, righteous, and good. Demons are angels who have rebelled against God. They are fallen, evil, destructive, and deceptive.
2 Corinthians 11:14-15 tells us "But I am not surprised! Even Satan disguises himself as an angel of light. So it is no wonder that his servants also disguise themselves as servants of righteousness. In the end they will get the punishment their wicked deeds deserve."
Impersonating a human spirit is certainly within a demon's capabilities.
The goal of a demonic spirit is to deceive human beings, draw us away from God. Appearances by and communication with the dead are one means by which they can accomplish that goal. People begin trusting psychics and mediums for spiritual counsel, adopting false beliefs about God and the after-life. This is why God vehemently opposes the practice. Even if the information obtained seems good, positive, or true when received through demonic sources (ghosts, ascended masters, spirit guides, etc) the result is corrupt and misleading.
Q5: I found a striking similarity in both yours and Marni Arnold's testimony: both of you mention how badly you were seeking answers to questions that Judaism and Christianity weren't giving you. Do you think Christians are failing at discipleship and why?

Yes, I do. When I began having serious doubts (started asking questions) I was told my problem was that I didn't have enough faith. I should stop worrying about just trust Jesus. No one was willing to talk to me. No matter how much I reached out, tried to make friends at church I couldn't break into anyone's circle. I was on my own. I think we as Christians have this idea that Sunday morning worship or attendance in Sunday school/home group, is meeting people's discipleship needs. Discipleship is more one on one or very small groups of people. Christians need to be studying the Bible for themselves (in addition to listening to pastors and teachers), walking out faith together. I'm sure there are many people who have that kind of fellowship/discipleship going on, but it wasn't my experience. I think a lot of people are being left out in the cold trying to figure things out on their own. This makes a person vulnerable to wrong teaching or belief. 
Q6: I know there are some practicing Wiccans reading today, what would you say to them about who Jesus is to you today? 
Jesus is everything to me. My rock, my deliverer. My teacher and friend. He is my Lord. 
Q7: What advice do you have for Christians that are dabbling in the dark side?
Don't. Playing with anything which has ties to the occult is opening a spiritual door into your  life. The Bible is our source of truth, wisdom, and life. Make it your goal to study it, absorb God's word into your heart and mind. Why turn to the things of this world (which may seem good/light/right for a time) when we can have an intimate relationship with God?

In Christ,
Kristine

Note from Jessie: I hope you have enjoyed Marni & Kristine at Jessie's House for the past four days. There is no end to how far our Father in Heaven pursues a love relationship with us. There is nothing that can separate us from the love of Christ. 

38 For I am convinced that neither death nor life, neither angels nor demons, neither the present nor the future, nor any powers, 39 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



Monday, October 31, 2011

A Christian Witch: One girl's testimony by Kristine McGuire


His Amazing Grace ~ My Testimony
Kristine McGuire

I was raised in a traditional Christian home.  I accepted Jesus as my Savior at Vacation Bible School when I was six years old. However, there were other influences in my life. I was aware of the unseen world around me. And I was absolutely fascinated by the occult. Ghosts, witches, mediums, psychics, haunted houses.
I wanted to learn about it all.
Growing up, my greatest ambition was to be a fortune teller (or a missionary in Africa. Go figure). My friends and I would pretend to be psychic or read each others palms. We would have “séances” at birthday  sleepovers, tell ghost stories, try to conjure the face of “Bloody Mary” in the mirror, or levitate each other with our fingertips.
As a teenager I started reading the Bible myself. I learned that God has warned against all of the mysterious, magical things I enjoyed. I loved God. I didn't want to offend Him, so I stopped participating in occult games and seeking psychic experiences. The problem---the desire remained. Even as I devoted myself to God, went to a Christian college, met and married a Christian man, there was a longing deep within me to explore those hidden occult interests.
My husband and I were very active in church. As a child I knew a relationship with God was based on His mercy but some how over the years I lost that vital understanding of my Savior. I forgot His mercy. I listened to others who suggested to be a "real Christian" you had to follow certain rules, live a certain way, to be godly. I became legalistic, replacing a relationship with God for religion in a quest to be “perfect”.
Over the years, I became angry. When life became difficult I was confused. All my efforts (prayer, reading scripture every day, attending church) seemed to be ignored by God. My family wasn't prosperous despite doing all the correct things or saying the right words.  Unable to live up to my strict demands of perfection I became depressed. I stopped reading the Bible and gave up on prayer. Church became a rote exercise. My relationship with my husband became strained as we struggled under unrealistic expectations.
I first learned about Wicca in 1995. Spiritually hungry, I began to study anything I could find which would answer the questions which were swirling in my mind. I found a book, drawn by the promise of understanding magic from the title. It wasn't until 1999, when I came to the conclusion that Christianity wasn’t working for me, that I took the information I learned about witchcraft and goddess worship as my own.
I began searching the Internet for information, joining pagan message boards, and befriending those with like minds or who could answer my questions. I studied mythology. I learned about herbs, crystals, colors, as well as divination techniques such as the tarot and pendulum.
For the first year I hid my mystical practices from my husband. He was going through his own emotional and spiritual struggles. I attended church, taught preschool in a Christian daycare. 

{I wore a convincing Christian mask.}

Eventually, I left my marriage and the church. I believed I had found freedom.
Over the next several years I worshipped the goddess, explored psychic development, and became a Claire sentient Medium. In 2005 I added ghost hunting to my ever expanding list of occult interests and activities.
And yet, despite my willful disobedience, God was not about to let me go easily. The Holy Spirit was always there, reminding me of His presence, convicting me of my sin. More than once I worried I'd made a mistake.  I would waffle between Christianity and witchcraft, throwing away all of my books and witchcraft supplies. If only there had been true repentance.  I tried to be a “good Christian”only to return to the Craft a month or so later.
You see, I still loved the Father, Son, and Holy Spirit. I wanted to be able to worship God but practice witchcraft. So I decided to bring my past faith into my current practice. I began culling from both Christianity and witchcraft, keeping what I liked from each while leaving the rest behind.
I became a Christian witch.
While creating my own unique (and hidden) spiritual path, I went back to church. Five years after our initial separation and several attempts to fix what was broken, my husband and I reunited. He had gotten his life and faith straightened out. He knew I was practicing witchcraft, working as a medium, and going on paranormal investigations. He decided to love me where I was and pray.
I believed I'd found my answer. I discovered other Christians who were “synchronizing” their religious beliefs with  mysticism as well. I was content for the first time in years.
God had other plans.
My husband was away, working in Georgia for eight weeks, when I got the call from my ghost hunting team. We were doing an emergency investigation a few days after Thanksgiving 2007. My job, as a medium, was to go into the environment and give a reading. No prior details, other than the address, would be given. I would conduct a videotaped walk through of the area. The team would hold "vigils" in the areas I had designated as supernatural "hot spots". 
That particular night I sensed a very hostile spirit in the home. I recognized it as demonic (what I called at the time "inhuman") spirit being. The team experienced some odd activity in the area where I sensed this presence most strongly. At one point during the investigation, I commanded the spirit to leave in the name of Jesus.
The team I worked with was very serious about paranormal investigation. Everything we did was from a desire to help people experiencing frightening or unexplainable events. We went in to every location armed with digital recorders, cameras, and other equipment. When an interesting EVP (electronic voice phenomena) was recorded the team leader would send it to me.  A few days after the Thanksgiving ghost hunt, he emailed me an audio clip from the investigation.
Donning my head phones I played it.
Over the two years I worked with the team I heard a number of interesting EVP's from our investigations. Whispers recorded when no one was in a room. Strange knocks or taps on walls.
I can honestly say I've never heard anything quite like what was on this particular audio.
The file began right after I commanded the "inhuman spirit" to leave the house in the name of Jesus. I'm recorded saying "You're uninvited!" after which the team leader quipped "You can't follow me home."  Suddenly you hear what can only be described as an angry shriek followed by a loud thump. Honestly, it's one of the weirdest things I have ever heard. As I sat there, listening to the audio clip over and over, I was completely stunned. Believe what you will, but I knew  I was hearing a demon scream in response to Jesus name.
I was as self deceived as a Christian could be. Jesus was still with me. Even coming from my lips, the authority and power of His name could still make demons scream and flee. It was as if a veil had been placed over my head all those years and someone had suddenly yanked it off.
My husband is a professional audio engineer. He tested the audio file. There was nothing fake or anything he could explain to account for the strange scream. I spent the next day or so reading my Bible. I read all the verses about witchcraft, mediums, consulting psychics, divination. I read  Matthew 6:22-23 (NLT):
“Your eye is a lamp that provides light for your body. When your eye is good, your whole body is filled with light. But when your eye is bad, your whole body is filled with darkness. And if the light you think you have is actually darkness, how deep that darkness is!"
I got down on my face before God and repented of everything, praying for hours, weeping, confessing, and rebuking demons I'd allowed into my life and family. God's mercy delivered me. My life is centered firmly in Jesus Christ. And I thank Him every day for His amazing grace.

Kristine McGuire is a Christian inspirational speaker/writer, sharing her testimony and encouraging others in their walk with Christ. She is a wife, mother, and Biblical Counselor through the American Association of Christian Counselors. Kristine is a featured columnist for Positively Feminine. Her book, Escaping the Cauldron, will be published by Charisma House in Fall 2012. Escaping the Cauldron is a personal memoir and Biblical study recounting Kristine's journey from committed Christian to witch, medium, and ghost hunter for eight years until restored to faith in Jesus Christ. You can connect with Kristine at: Kristine ReMixed, http://www.kristinemcguire.com on Facebook: 


Sunday, October 30, 2011

Wiccans: Questions and Answers with Marni Arnold


 
Q1: What was so alluring about Paganism/Wicca that enticed you to leave your Jewish roots to follow that path?

What was alluring to me was the control I was led to believe I had; to find the answers I never could get from any family, friends or respected teachers or Rabbi's about God, His ways, or the many "why's" of life. If no one else, even God Himself, wasn't going to answer me - I was going to find the answers on my own. I also deeply desired to find myself, felt that since Judaism wasn't providing me with the tools to help- and the books I was picking up on Wicca and Witchcraft were providing such answers - it was easy for me to embrace it as truth.

Q2: What was your first Halloween like as a practicing Wiccan?

My first Halloween, or Samhain (sow-en, is how it's pronounced - as it is Gaelic for "summers end"), was celebrated with a small coven (group of Pagans who practice together exclusively) that I had helped develop. We had a typical Halloween party for all kinds of people who attended - even those who weren't Pagan - but, in a back room of the house was a room set up for a particular ritual in which people could choose to participate in if they so wished (it wasn't forced upon them). It was a ritual that at first deeply spooked me, but then I found myself becoming comfortable with it because I didn't want to be afraid - even though I was.
  Q3: Did you worship Satan at all in your time as a Pagan?
No. The majority of Pagans, Wiccans, and Witches don't embrace the concept of a devil, or even Satan himself. However, in working with the side of life that God demands we stay away from, for it is very real; it has great potential to lure people into a life that works with a more negative, dark side that can easily lead one down the path that literally rides the border of hell itself. It has a lot to do with intent and motive.

{The reason God desires for us to be as far away from this part of life is because our human natures aren't designed to handle the spirit realm in this capacity}.

Q4: You mentioned in our private interview that Wiccans typically desire to dispel negativity, but did you find the lifestyle you ended up leading to be a lifestyle free of strife? In your experience, what was the personality culture within the various groups you were engaged with?

Very good question, Jessica - and the answer is a profound no.

For the most part, most Pagans strive to live as far from negativity as they possibly can. They don't welcome it into their lives willingly - however, it doesn't mean that negativity never finds it's way in at times. In my case, however, I constantly seemed to run into people who had deep power control issues that caused great negativity, and therefore it caused great strife in my life which kept feeding my desire to control my environment and discovery for answers even more.
 
Q5: Tell us about the illness you mentioned in your testimony, the week you decided to give up working with the Pagan public a year prior to your salvation?

I was violently sick to my stomach for five days due to the deep negativity that pierced through me while in the last public ritual I was in as a Pagan. My husband and I chalked it up as a spiritual attack, because it was the only reasonable explanation due to the fact our doctor couldn't even pinpoint why I was so sick.
 
Q6: At what point after you left the coven that night did you accept Christ?

One year, to the date. Dec. 21, 2002 - I left the ritual as sick, and burdened, as I could be in my life. And unbeknownst to me, I found myself at a Christmas Cantata on Dec. 21, 2003 in a Church accepting Christ as my Lord and Savior.

Q7: I want to run some global statistics by you. What is your gut reaction to this fascination with Witchcraft in our world?
1,000,000 monthly searches for the term "Wicca" via Google.
40,500 monthly searches for the term "Wiccan spells" via Google.
3,350,000 monthly searches for the term "Witchcraft" via Google.
7,480,000 monthly searches for the phrase "How to be a Witch" via Google.

Honestly, it doesn't shock me at all. The reason is because of the immersion I was a part of with this life. I lived this life for six years, and I met many people who you would never think would be practicing Pagans - even right here in the Bible Belt, where I live.

The allure of control, positivity, finding what works just for yourself, and making a religion that works within your own life view is very attractive. With a world that seeks to always control people, that is filled with negativity, and religions that seem (on the surface) to be extremely restrictive - it's easy for the human mind and heart to wander into ways that offer a seemingly easier way to live which already matched the ideals we hold within our minds and hearts. Paganism holds that kind of attraction to a good majority of people - Christian and non-Christian alike.
 

Q9: What advice would you give anyone interested in the supernatural world?

That with as much light, positive, beautiful and fantastic ideals that promise a life that is easier than the one you live now - question it highly, and don't accept it as truth.

Life has a great amount of darkness in this world, and it comes at us from all different angles and avenues trying to break us down to the points our absolute breaking points. Yet, it's in these breaking point moments where we have an absolute decision to make - do we rely on ourselves to make our lives right, or do we turn our lives over to the only One who can make them right; Jesus Christ?

Q10: What has God shown you since you left Paganism and became a Christian?

That a life lived without Him is no life at all. It's merely a facade of a life...an idea of what we think it can or is supposed to be.

Life is only found in Christ, for in our creation by our Father's hands, there is only life found in the creator of our lives; not the natural state of this world. Certainly, we are born (naturally) into this world, but our bodies...minds...hearts (physical, beating ones)...they aren't what (or even who) we are. Our true identity, our seeking out of who God truly is and the answers we so desperately want to know about Him and so much more, are only found in one place...Christ.

Q11: If there is anyone reading this today, who was where you were then, what would you say to them?

Know you are not alone. Though the Church at times can be a cold place for those redeemed of a life of Paganism, due to so many just being undereducated (or not even educated at all) within the Church, your life...your testimony...your voice in telling your testimony...it all matters. God deeply desires for you to "come out of the closet" again to reveal His glory in your life, to offer hope to others who are either dabbling with, or deep in practice of, the Pagan ways. It's our job to help educate those in your community and beyond about the realities of Paganism and Witchcraft, and why it needs to be avoided.
 
"Marni Arnold is a happily married wife, and stay-at-home-mom to one son - whom she home schools - in Charlotte, NC. Attending Liberty University Online for her Bachelor's of Science in Religion, she is also an author whom is working on her first book and blogs at RelevantBrokenness.com. Her professional background is in EMS/Fire, and comes from a very diverse spiritual background as well. Marni enjoys reading, meeting with people over coffee, music, movies, autumn days filled with leaf tossing and laughter, as well as art, science and historical museums."