Blog Archives

Deadly Words Spoken – It’s a Trap!

Lately I’ve been paying attention to the words people use. I’m noticing a pattern – especially after my 3:30am Battle the other night. Some words are like a trap door – if we’re not careful, we will fall into believing they are true. Here’s a list of deadly words that are often used:

  • Nobody
  • No one
  • Nothing
  • Everybody
  • Everyone
  • Everything
  • Never
  • Always

When we use these words, it is rarely accurate (meaning there is deception in there somewhere). Often these words are used to manipulate our emotions – to bring death to our soul instead of life. Whether we speak them or someone speaks them to us (or we simply hear them in our head), they make the situation seem hopeless. That’s deadly!

For instance

  • Nobody listens to me.
  • No one cares what I have to say.
  • Nothing ever works out for me.
  • Everybody has a _(job, car, spouse, child, etc)_ except me.
  • Everyone else has it better than me.
  • Everything is my fault.
  • I’ll never get that job I want.
  • I always get blamed for everything!

I once had a male friend that whenever his girlfriend would say, “You never …” or “You always …”, he would reply. “Darlin’, I’m not that good. I never always do the same thing.” and he would kind of chuckle with a twinkle in his eye. He was trying to lighten the mood while also reminding her that he was just as human and unpredictable as we all are.

When we use sweeping words like Never, Always, Everything or Nothing, it can make us feel like our circumstances will not change. It saps our hope for the future. It can make us feel powerless to make changes for our good – which actually becomes kind of like a self-fulfilling prophecy. My husband often tells me, “If you believe something, life has a way of proving you right. So if you believe nothing ever works out for you, you’ll be proven right. But if you believe things will work out for you, they often do.” It goes both ways.

When those sweeping words are used against us, it’s usually an accusation. And like my friend said – we’re human and unpredictable and we rarely ALWAYS do the same thing.

It’s good to pay attention to the words you use (or are used against you) and determine if they are TRUE. Especially when that voice in your head says them. [Remember we recently discussed God’s Voice vs Other Voices: How Can You Tell the Difference?]

Context is Key

It occurred to me that the positive side of these statement can also be manipulation and deception.

For instance

  • Nobody can do this as well as you can!
  • No one stands a chance against you.
  • Nothing can stop you now.
  • Everybody wants to be your friend.
  • Everyone admires you.
  • Everything you do is amazing!
  • You’ll never regret taking that job.
  • I’ll always be there for you.

Most of these sound like positive, encouraging statements … except that they are deceptive. They are focused on inflating your ego with false expectations – not good and not realistic. A set up for disappointment.

How Do I Get Out of This Trap?

So how do we keep out of the extremes? Think carefully about what you want to say (or what you hear). Keep it balanced. Try substituting words like Some or Might. Notice how changing these words takes the “bite” out of those negative statements:

  • Some people don’t listen to me.
  • Some people don’t care what I have to say.
  • Some things don’t work out for me.
  • Some people have a _(job, car, spouse, child, etc)_, but not everyone.
  • Some people have it better than me but not everyone.
  • Some things are my fault.
  • I might not get that job I want.
  • I might get blamed for some things that I didn’t do.

Pay attention to the accusations you hear in your own mind. Change the wording. See if that seems more accurate. It will empower you to take action instead of feeling like a victim.

Don’t allow these words to manipulate your feelings – leading you to a sense of hopelessness that things will “never” change. That’s not God speaking to you, I promise. His words bring hope.

There’s always hope.

(See, there’s a healthy use of the word “always”. There are a few of them. Use it sparingly.)

Advertisements

Spiritual Warfare 101: Battle at 3:30am

Yesterday on the way to the doctor, I heard this song in my head – it’s a worship song from the 1990’s.

The enemy whispered into my mind determined to wear me down. Alert in the Spirit I am not blind – my confession of faith has the enemy bound! I will rejoice; I will rejoice – I will rejoice for I’ve made my CHOICE to rejoice in the Lord! – Bob Fitts, I Will Rejoice, Maranatha Music

Odd. I haven’t heard that song in years. I wonder why that song would suddenly pop into my head. I even remembered the lyrics clearly. Hmm, maybe this is for a reason? The day was busy, life went on and before I knew it, it was bedtime and I fell asleep.

I awakened at 3:30am – time to empty my bladder. As I rolled back under the covers, I was immediately assaulted with all kinds of doubts and disturbing thoughts. One minute I was still in “sleepy-brain mode” and the next, I am wide awake and can’t sleep.

Earlier this week, I had sent out an email to our closest friends asking for prayer for my husband’s upcoming surgery. A few had responded, but many had not. No response – why?

My mind started churning, thinking about the email. I had specifically requested a response, especially since we all get inundated with so many emails. I wanted/needed to know they were supporting us in prayer.

I began to doubt myself – maybe my email wasn’t worded correctly. Maybe that’s why they didn’t respond. Maybe our friends just didn’t care enough to respond – some of our relationships didn’t feel as close as they used to. Could people have just stopped caring about us?

The more I experienced these thoughts, my emotions were being stirred up. I tried several times to quiet my mind and go back to sleep. Impossible!

I could feel this emotional pressure pushing on me. I felt small, vulnerable, unloved, insignificant, uncared for … basically invisible. All because a few friends didn’t reply to my email.

Wait – that didn’t add up for me. I’m not usually like that.

Suddenly a light-bulb went off – this is an ATTACK!

I was still feeling it, but now I knew this was more than just random thoughts. This was an assignment from the enemy to hurt me.

So I prayed – out loud. “Jesus, please help me. What’s going on? What IS this?”

It suddenly became obvious to me – this is Baal! (that’s the gift of discernment at work)

Baal Unveiled

Baal is a very common name mentioned in the Old Testament. You might remember the showdown between Elijah and the prophets of Baal. Baal was this god that demanded human sacrifice – he was a very violent, bloody god associated with child abuse, rage, greed and lust.

I call him “the orphan maker”. All the fruit of his works leads people to believe they are orphans in this world – that no one really cares about them or will protect them from evil. In modern lingo, we refer to this as the “victim mentality”. Poor me, nobody knows what it’s like to be me, my life sucks, nobody cares, I’m all alone, etc.

We’ve all felt that way at one time or another. Probably more often than we are willing to admit.

Once I realized the pattern in the thoughts that were bombarding me at 3:30am (now it was 5am), I recognized this as the assignment of Baal. [By the way, that’s what I call it. You might have a different name for it – that’s okay. You get the main idea, right? Just stick to that for now.]

Now keep in mind – these were MY thoughts and MY emotions I was experiencing. They sounded like me – until something didn’t add up. I don’t usually get so worked up about whether or not someone responds to an email. I know everyone is busy – I would have just sent it again about a week later and said, “Hey, did you get this?” No big deal.

The devil overplayed his hand. When things didn’t add up – that’s when it occurred to me, “Hey, these are NOT my usual thoughts. Something’s not right here!” Maybe the sleepy-brain was interfering with my ability to distinguish this sooner, who knows? Either way, I got it – finally. After wasting an hour and half tossing and turning.

The Lord taught me a strategy for dealing with Baal (aka orphan thinking) in the past:

DON’T RESPOND. Don’t look at what he wants you to focus on. Look at God’s goodness instead. Pay attention to the love of God instead.

So that’s what I did. In my heart and mind, I immediately stopped obsessing about the email and started thinking about God’s goodness to me. I started thinking things like, “It doesn’t matter who responded. If we need prayer, God will stir people’s hearts to pray for us. I know he often stirs my heart to pray for our friends. I’m sure He will do that with them too. Of course, they love us – they’re just busy living life. I don’t have to worry about this because God’s got us. He’s a good father and He is taking very good care of us. God has given me peace about this surgery – I’m not worried. God’s good to us.”

Immediately all the mental and emotional distress I had been feeling literally VANISHED! Like instantly – as soon as I turned my mind and heart to focus on God’s care for me. It was amazing. The darkness dispersed – POW! No more negative emotions – no more emotional pressure. No more stress!

I felt light and peaceful inside. Whew! Yay, God!! YOU ARE AMAZING, JESUS!! ❤

I felt so peaceful I started to drift off to sleep – at 5:30am. Just as I’m nodding off, my husband got up to go to work. Now I was awake. I got up with him. He had a particularly hard morning and I’m glad I got up with him. I helped him get off to work.

The timing felt significant – it was important that I was awake when I was so I could help him. I was actually more alert than he was – sometimes he wonders about that, but what can I tell him? “I’m wide awake because I’ve been fighting with Baal for the last 2 hours?” I did tell him later but not then – he’s still had sleepy-brain. 🙂

As I headed back to bed, I thought about the fact that sons and daughters are led by the Spirit. That’s a hallmark of adoption. It may have felt like a sleepless night to me, but in reality it was just me being a daughter of God. Being led by Him to do battle with dark forces at 3:30am (which is actually a prime time for that).

When I got up a few hours later, I wanted to post this somewhere:

But I thought it might be too weird for some people. So instead I posted this:

If the enemy can get you to doubt the love and goodness of God toward you, he’s won. Don’t believe his lies for a second!

Now I know why that song was playing in my head yesterday! Those words turned out to be the exact strategy I needed to overcome!

Here they are again:

The enemy whispered into my mind determined to wear me down. Alert in the Spirit I am not blind – my confession of faith has the enemy bound! I will rejoice; I will rejoice – I will rejoice for I’ve made my CHOICE to rejoice in the Lord! – Bob Fitts, I Will Rejoice, Maranatha Music

Too weird, huh? Yeah, that’s why I write this blog. These things happen to me a lot. I don’t feel comfortable just casually sharing these kind of things. Can you imagine having this conversation with a friend:

“So, how was your day?”

“Well, pretty good. I spent 2 hours fighting demons and then realized that the battle strategy I needed was given to me earlier in the day in some song lyrics from the last century. I lost sleep but somehow God orchestrated it beautifully so that I could help my husband get off to work this morning. I now know a little bit more about the demonic assignment of Baal and I’m telling the world through my blog. So, how about you? What’s new?”

I certainly hope this article helps somebody somewhere. Please let me know if it does. Because I sure WISH I had this knowledge when I was a younger Christian. It can feel overwhelming when the enemy floods your mind like that and you don’t know what to do. Now I know and I’m telling you – SO GO BE DANGEROUS to the kingdom of darkness, okay?

Let me know what you think. I’d love to hear if this post helped you. Thanks 🙂

P.S. If you want to hear the original song I’m referring to, here’s the YouTube Link:

Hearing God – How Do You Know It’s REALLY God?

At 1:30am, I awoke to the voice of God. It surprised me. I wasn’t expecting it – I had been deeply asleep.

How do I know it was God?

  1. It came out of nowhere. I didn’t initiate this.
  2. It was full of compassion and love.
  3. It was a complete thought instantly – an immediate download of information that came with such sudden depth of understanding that I did not have before it came. It was instant insight that took me 9 paragraphs to record in my journal.

What did it “sound” like?

Like my own voice in my thoughts. But I knew it wasn’t MY thoughts for several reasons.

  1. I couldn’t have made this up. This was entirely new insight that I didn’t have before.
  2. It was not a logical progression of thoughts, one by one, like what normally happens when I am trying to figure something out. It was like a waterfall of instant understanding. (Like Neo in The Matrix receiving instant information about how to fly a helicopter.)
  3. I was asleep and was awakened just as it started. That’s not normally the way my mind works. It takes me awhile to wake up and start thinking clearly.
  4. It was full of love and compassion.
  5. It started with, “It’s not what you think it is …” Why would I say that if it was my own thoughts?

I write this as an example for those who are unfamiliar with hearing from God. There are times like this where you KNOW it’s God. It’s not always this clear. And that list of how I know it was God is not a checklist – it doesn’t always happen that way.

What IS pretty consistent is the waterfall of new insight – to me that’s a clear indication that I’m hearing from God. You can’t make this stuff up. And if the insight is connected with selfless love and compassion, you can’t go wrong. Some people tell me they are hearing from God, but I wonder about that when it’s not leading them toward Love.

Always look for the Love – the insight should come with love, or move you toward greater compassion. That’s the litmus test of authenticity that you are hearing from God. Look for the Love! ❤

Intimacy with Jesus Christ

Having a deep, personal relationship with Jesus Christ is better than any relationship you can have with another human being anywhere in the world. When you know Him and you allow Him to know you (to come into your heart and life) – it’s the best thing you can ever experience. I don’t even have words to describe the incredible benefits that this life-giving connection has on your body, soul and spirit.

We all long for connection. To feel like someone “gets” us or understands us on a very deep, personal level. Have you ever had a special experience happen to you and afterwards you immediately thought of that one person you wanted to tell? Why did you think of them specifically? Because you share a very personal connection with them and they would understand why that experience was so special to you.

That’s called intimacy – when we know someone well and they know us well. We often share that kind of intimacy with family members – we’ve known each other all our lives so there’s a certain degree of intimacy. They remember what we were like as kids or they were part of significant events in our lives. Shared experiences build a certain kind of intimacy.

But even then, there’s a deeper intimacy we can have with someone where we CHOOSE to share ourselves with them. We find that one special person that we like and trust. It might be a family member or a best friend. With this person, we share our more personal thoughts and emotions, our dreams and our fears – the kind of things we don’t share with just anybody. We reserve them for that special person.

Jesus Christ can be that special person, if you let Him.

One thing that’s really cool about Jesus Christ is that He’s God’s Son. God knows everything! So when you become close to Jesus, He already knows everything about you. I love that. No need to keep secrets or wonder if you should tell Him something – He already knows! This makes Him a great friend because He already knows your favorite color, your favorite music or movies or books, your favorite flavors, your favorite places, etc. Usually it takes a long time for someone to care that much about you to learn those kinds of things and remember them. He already knows all that stuff! (And He loves who you are!)

He also remembers everything. This is helpful when you are dealing with something from your past that you need to talk to someone about. He was there. You can talk to Him about anything because He knows what happened and He can empathize with your emotions about the event (good OR bad or both). This is so incredibly comforting. He lived on the earth so He knows all the stuff we struggle with – the good, the bad AND the ugly. He really knows what it’s like so you can trust Him to understand what you’re going through. He wants to be there for you. And He’s a GREAT listener. ❤

No one understands like Jesus Christ. He “gets” you like no one else on the face of the planet can. He feels what you are feeling. He knows what you are thinking. He loves to hear your voice and to have you talk to Him. Like He literally gets excited to know that you want to talk to Him! He waits to hear your voice.

So, what are you waiting for? Just talk to Him. From your heart. Be honest. Be real. Just be yourself.

Then do it again the next day. Then the next. Pretty soon you’ll be very close and you’ll wonder how you ever made it through a day without spending time with Him.

I hope this has encouraged you. Please feel free to share any thoughts that this post inspired in you.

Listen, obey – don’t second guess!

Trust & Obey

A man shared this story with me and I thought it would help to illustrate the importance of following the Holy Spirit.

He was on a business trip and contacted some old friends he hadn’t seen in years. They picked him up for church and then invited him over for lunch. He spent several hours with them, enjoying their company and getting to know their three small children. (He loves kids!)

The following weekend, he was making plans to see them again. As he was getting ready, the Holy Spirit impressed on him to prepare to give them some money – $120 in cash. He wrestled with the idea. When he had visited them, they had seemed to be doing okay. Their house was nice, their children had toys and were dressed well. They didn’t appear to have any financial needs.

Especially as a man, he didn’t want to embarrass his friend by offering him the money and implying that he wasn’t a good provider for his family. He kept wondering, “Why do I feel this nudge to give them money? This doesn’t make any sense!”

But this man has walked with God for many years – so he knew better than to second guess. He put the cash in an envelope and prepared to give it to them at the right time. Even though he had no idea why.

He visited with them and just before he was ready to leave, he spoke to both the husband and wife together. He said, “I felt from the Lord that I was to give you this money. I’m not sure what you need it for – maybe for Christmas or something.” The couple politely thanked him and then his friend drove him back to his hotel.

As they drove, his friend told him what a HUGE blessing that money would be to them. He told him that just a few days before, he’d given his wife his last $40 to buy groceries for the week. He had put $10 of gas in her car and $3 in his, hoping to make it to the end of the week when his next paycheck would come. They had been able to meet their basic expenses like rent, electricity, gas, etc, but right now, they had no cash flow and things were very tight.

His unexpected cash gift was a BIG answer to prayer and came at just the right time!

Isn’t that cool? From the outside, they looked like any other family. The man had no idea they were in need. They never mentioned it to him. But thank God, he listened to the Holy Spirit, he obeyed and didn’t second guess himself. Not only did it increase his faith, it also increased theirs – God demonstrated Himself as their Provider without them saying a word to anyone! I love that! ❤

Have you ever had an experience like that? Please feel free to share it below. 🙂

Confronting Intimidation

Yelling boss

Jenny* called me on her drive home from work. She told me how her boss was not treating her well. He was humiliating her in front of other employees. Now the higher up boss was doing it too. She felt so embarrassed when they did this.

What made it even more infuriating was that she was filling in for 4 other people who had left the job. She was working really hard, really long hours trying to keep everything running in her department, but instead of being appreciated and thanked, she was being called out on every little mistake they were finding. She was exhausted, both mentally and emotionally.

When she first got this job, they had shown her a lot of respect. She had many years of experience in the industry and they were very happy she had joined their team. Now she felt intimidated daily by all their accusations and frustrated no one could see the good she was doing. She was angry, tired and feeling overwhelmed.

I listened and tried to empathize with her. I recognized a pattern – this was similar to the previous job she’d had. That boss had accused her and treated her badly as well. She justified his actions because she knew he had mental health issues and was on and off medication. This time there was no justification.

“You’ve got to deal with this in the unseen realm,” I told her.

“This is not normal. You’re right. What should I do?” She agreed.

“You need to take authority over this spirit of Intimidation so that it doesn’t harass you at work any more,” I said.

“But how can I? It’s my boss. I don’t have authority over him. I don’t want to be disrespectful of his position,” she replied.

“You’re right. You do want to respect his position. But you don’t deserve to be treated disrespectfully. That’s not right! I learned something that I believe will work for you. You cannot change his actions, but you can bind that spirit of Intimidation from manifesting in your presence. Then you’ll just be dealing with a normal human being – not one that is being influenced and empowered by an evil spirit,” I suggested.

She agreed to try it. I sent her some prayers to pray before work. I put them in an email so she could keep it easily accessible on her phone. Here’s the message I sent her:

Here are 3 specific prayers that will help you stand and take authority in your situation.

You don’t deserve to be treated with disrespect. You don’t deserve to work in an environment where you feel intimidated.

1. I come out of agreement with fear and intimidation. I release peace and trust in the Lord into my soul. (pause for a moment)
2. Spirit of Jenny, I call you to attention. Please come forward and lead. Soul, please go to the back and rest. (pause for a moment)
3. I take authority over Intimidation operating through (name of person). You do not have permission to manifest in my presence. I release the fear of the Lord, wisdom, humility and teamwork right now, in Jesus name! Thank you, Lord!

Save this email. When you cannot think straight, say these 3 prayers in this order.
Also say them before any time you know you will speak to your boss, supervisor, etc. Any person who is not treating you right – say this prayer before you talk to them. I would encourage you to say these prayers each day before work.

You WILL see this situation change – I promise!

The next morning I sent her a short text message reminding her – she said she got my message while driving to work and immediately pulled over so she could say those prayers.

At the end of the day, I got this message from her:

“I don’t have words enough to thank you for your time listening and your time writing this for me. Thank you for your prayers. Today was a good day at work. I haven’t had a good day like this in a very long time.

Many times the issues we have with people are not about the people themselves. It is an attack against us by demonic forces. They want to see if you know who you are – your identity in Christ.

Paul said in Ephesians 6:12:

For we do not wrestle against flesh and blood (human beings), but against principalities, against powers, against the rulers of the darkness of this age, against spiritual hosts of wickedness in the heavenly places.

Especially when you see the same pattern happening over and over in your life, it’s safe to assume there’s something spiritual going on. Ask the Lord for insight and understanding. Feel free to adapt these prayers to fit your own situation.

I hope this post will help someone today – it certainly helped Jennie! 🙂

Feel free to share below any specific prayers that you have found helpful so we can learn from each other. And if you try these 3 prayers – please let me know how it worked out for you. I expect you’ll see a shift in how people are treating you at your job too!

*name changed to protect privacy

For more information about prayer #2, follow these links: Spirit vs Soul Part 1 and Part 2

Help Me, Holy Spirit!

“Help Me, Holy Spirit!”

I have found this to be the BEST prayer for everyday life. The Holy Spirit is referred to as our Helper in John 14:26:

But the Helper, the Holy Spirit, whom the Father will send in My name, will teach you all things,

and bring to your remembrance all things that I said to you. – Jesus Christ, The Bible

Oftentimes we don’t know what to pray. Life situations can overwhelm us. We can get so tired or so busy that it seems like an effort to connect with God.

Jesus said that the Holy Spirit would be sent to us by the Father. The Spirit has many functions – one of which is to help us! Isn’t that cool?

I don’t know about you, but I need help every day.

When I’m trying to figure out what to cook for dinner and my mind is drawing a blank, I say, “Help me, Holy Spirit!”. Pretty soon a dinner menu drops into my mind with the ingredients I need (or already have on hand). I know what to make and I know how to make it. Instantly! Sometimes when my family asks, “What is this?” I tell them, “This is a new dish – never before seen on the earth! It’s a new creation. I hope you like it.” They dig in and usually love it! But don’t ask me to make it again because I won’t remember how I made it. It’s like art – you can’t mass produce it and make “prints” from it. 🙂

When I haven’t slept well and the day seems challenging with all that I need to accomplish, I have often found myself walking toward the store saying, “Help me, Holy Spirit.” I discover the energy I need to accomplish all that is on my list to do that day. When I fall into bed that night, I am often amazed at how much got done. I whisper, “Thank you, Holy Spirit, I know that was YOU.” The Spirit can quicken our mortal bodies to have the energy we need to finish our daily race (Romans 8:11).

When a friend calls with a serious relationship problem or a deep question about the meaning of life, I silently pray, “Help me, Holy Spirit!”, as I listen with my heart. Miraculously I open my mouth and say things that seem to help. Often times I’ve never even thought of the things I say – I learn even as I’m speaking! It’s really cool – instant download of new revelation from the Holy Spirit. I call that “hands-on training”. One minute I had no idea what to say and the next minute I sound like I have all this wisdom to help my friend. That’s the Holy Spirit!

Jesus said the Holy Spirit would help us by teaching us all things. He also said the Spirit would bring things to our remembrance. That is very comforting – especially as our minds age and we start forgetting things. Whenever my husband or I misplace something (i.e. keys, wallet or glasses), we cry out, “Help me, Holy Spirit!” and guess what? The missing item shows up. Every time.

I remind people who are in school that if they are struggling with a specific subject (i.e. Calculus, for instance) that they can pray, “Help me, Holy Spirit!”. They will receive supernatural “teaching” to help their mind comprehend what is necessary. And it can’t hurt to pray that same thing just before a test, asking the Spirit to bring to your remembrance the material that was studied. I often experienced supernatural memory recall when I was studying and taking tests for my Masters degree. It reduces your anxiety about big tests when you rely on the Holy Spirit to teach you and help you. 🙂

There are so many situations where this simple prayer can help

  • making decisions
  • parenting children
  • choosing a career
  • planning a vacation
  • making new friends
  • developing a business idea
  • making sales calls
  • writing a proposal

I encourage you to practice saying this prayer this week and then watch to see what happens. Please come back and tell us what you experienced!

I love this simple prayer! It cultivates in me an attitude of reliance on the Holy Spirit to lead me, guide me, teach me and help me. 🙂

Physical Symptoms of Discernment

Sometimes you can experience physical sensations in your body that tell you something is going on in the unseen realm. Has this ever happened to you?

A reader of the blog sent me this question:
“I sometime will feel the sensation of worms or ants crawling under my skin. Sometimes it will be all over my body, other times just on my head or back of shoulders. I know I’m sensing something demonic and it partly has to do with the enemy speaking lies and trying to manipulate. Why do I feel it in different places and what is the Lord trying to tell me?”

Good question! I had never experienced this before so I sent this question to a few friends who are gifted with discernment and have been walking with the Lord for a long time. Three people told me they had experienced it before. Two people said it was related to witchcraft. Witchcraft is a form of manipulation.

Regarding why it is felt in different places – one person replied that the location on the body didn’t make any difference to him. It was just God’s way of getting his attention that something wasn’t right and he needed to pay attention. Another person responded that the different locations are likely tied into the type of witchcraft – perhaps one is atmospheric witchcraft (on the head) whereas the one on the back is a specific person manipulating you.

Very interesting responses – I like that each person had their own experience of this and was able to provide some insight. We see in part and know in part (I Cor 13:9-12). This is why I started this blog – to open the conversation regarding this topic because none of us has it all together!

This question made me start thinking of other physical symptoms of discernment – what I mean is you have a physical sensation in your body and this tells you something spiritual or unseen may be happening. Often you also get a certain kind of “knowing” that it’s not just a physical sensation, especially if it happens suddenly. There are no “rules” that say, “This symptom always correlates to this particular spirit”. I know that makes it hard for those who are just starting out. The key is to never assume. Just ask the Holy Spirit – He will tell you what you need to know. If you don’t get an answer, maybe you don’t need to know. Or sometimes you might be asking the wrong question.

Why aren’t there “rules”? Because spiritual gifts are meant to draw you closer to Jesus. You become more dependent on Him as you seek Him for understanding. If there was a simple chart or book that explained it all, then why would you need to depend on Him? You could just lean on your own understanding – not a good idea, when it comes to spiritual warfare and discerning what it happening in the unseen realm.

That being said, here are some symptoms that people have experienced in relation to specific spiritual influences. This might help you as you ask the Lord what is happening – if nothing else, it might make you feel better that you’re not crazy and you’re not alone. (One of the main reasons this blog exists, by the way!)

Witchcraft:
Sudden sharp headache – might feel like an ice pick in one side of the head
Ringing in the ears, also means something is shifting in the spirit realm (usually not good)
Sudden Nausea
Painful pressure on the chest

Fear:

Butterflies or knots in the stomach
Tension on the back of the neck, tingling up the spine

Eyes twitching/burning – May be blocked from seeing in the spirit

Ears irritated/plugged – May be blocked from hearing from the Lord

Feeling of being squeezed – Python/Divination

Pain in the lungs when breathing – Needs filling with the Holy Spirit, related to Python perhaps?
Sharp pain in lower left stomach – Rejection

Heaviness on the shoulders – Carrying a heavy burden that was not meant for them
Sudden drowsiness – Leviathan, a spirit that comes against leaders & their followers

Sometimes when you experience one of these symptoms, the discernment is for YOU. To warn you to pay attention and pray for more clarity. Sometimes you are discerning something for another person. It’s very important that when physical symptoms suddenly come that you ask the Lord to help you figure out whether it is for you or for someone else. Also use some common sense and determine whether your body is responding to something in the natural realm. Don’t ignore physical symptoms. But also be careful not to over-spiritualize them. If they are part of the gift of discernment, then the Lord will give you clarity as to what to do with them. Once you take the action He tells you (pray, decree, bind, loose or whatever), the symptom will disappear. If it doesn’t, it might just be a headache. Rest, drink water and it will go away. 🙂

Was this post helpful? Please leave a comment below. If you’ve experienced a physical sensation related to discernment, please let us know.

Sexual Harassment from the Dark Side

 

I was having coffee recently with two female friends. Linda* was telling us about a man who was pursuing her romantically. She felt very uncomfortable with his behavior and was trying to figure out how to handle it appropriately. She was afraid to confront him. It suddenly dawned on her that the situation reminded her of when she was a child and was abused. It also reminded her of when she spoke up as an adult regarding sexual harassment she experienced at an organization where she worked. In both situations, she had no voice. She tried to speak up and instead of being defended, the situation got worse. It brought tears to her eyes.

“I can relate. Something happened to me when I was young and I felt the same way. I told my mom and she did nothing. For years, whenever a man would stand too close to me, I would immediately get tense and feel very uncomfortable,” Yesenia* said.

“Maybe the Lord is allowing this man to come into your life to stir up these issues – so you can be healed,” I said.

“I hope so. I thought I had put this behind me – I’m surprised that I got so emotional just telling you about it right now. That must mean there’s more healing for me to do,” Linda replied.

“You know, there’s a spirit behind that man that’s making you uncomfortable,” Yesenia said.

“I know! I was thinking the same thing! His behavior makes me feel intimidated. Last week, we were both at an outreach event and someone put their hands on both sides of my waist briefly. I felt something touch my butt. When I turned around, he was the only one nearby that could have done it. It made me so mad but I didn’t want to make a scene,” Linda vented.

“Man, I would have been angry! How dare he touch you like that without your permission!” I interjected.

“That’s a very intimate way to touch a woman. He crossed the line right there,” Yesenia sympathized. “I’m sorry that happened to you.”

“That’s sexual harassment AND intimidation,” I said. “Intimidation is a spiritual force. It often comes with a spirit of Control.”

“Yeah, someone else told me that he’s very controlling. I’ve seen that aspect of him sometimes. He used to be so humble, but lately he’s become very opinionated and seems to know it all. That reminds me of my ex who abused me,” Linda remarked.

“I bet this is a challenge of your identity. The enemy wants to see whether you really know who you are. You used to be the woman that men could take advantage of – but not any more! As you allow the Lord to heal your heart in this area, you will become more confident. And I bet that guy will leave you alone,” I said.

Just as we were discussing the spiritual forces behind this man’s behavior, a stranger walked into the coffee shop. He started speaking loudly as he approached our table. He was cursing and making sexually explicit comments. He got right in our faces. We were shocked. He looked disheveled and unkempt. It is obvious he was under the influence of drugs or alcohol. Nothing he said made any sense.

We felt so uncomfortable that all three of us grabbed our purses and walked toward the exit. Linda turned to him and said, “I feel bad for you. I’m sorry you’re in pain.”

He called her several vulgar names, yelling them as we left. He was really creating a scene. I looked around and there were no employees behind the counter. Where was the manager?

We got outside and found an employee sweeping the outdoor tables. We told him to find a manager and get rid of that man because he was harassing us. As we left, we saw through the front window a manager and that employee talking to the man.

Linda was shaking. Yesenia was angry. I was concerned but not afraid.

“He called me names I’ve heard before. It really shook me,” Linda confessed in a quiet voice. “But I also saw how broken he is on the inside. I feel so bad for him.”

We walk her to her car and watched as she drove away. Yesenia and I walked to my car. The man walked toward us. I got in my car and locked the doors. As I was pulling out, I saw the man following Yesenia to her car. I stopped and waited for her to get in and leave. He was not far behind but thankfully we both were able to drive away without further confrontation.

Yesenia called me as we drove home.

“Do you realize what just happened? That was spiritual sexual harassment! That guy was out of his mind and he came straight over to our table, saying all those obscene comments. It was targeted at Linda.”

“Yeah, I was thinking the same thing. What are the odds that just as we were revealing the spiritual forces behind her current situation that some random guy comes in trying to intimidate us with such sexually explicit comments? And did you notice that there was a policeman there just moments before the guy came in? He disappeared – I guess he left after getting his coffee. That makes me think about authority. If he’d been there, that strange guy would never have gotten away with his behavior. Identity and authority are linked. When Linda recovers her true identity in this area of her life, she will have the authority to stop this harassment she is feeling from this man in her life.”

We paused and pondered what had just happened to us.

“Wow. God is so good. He even uses what the enemy meant for evil to bring about His purposes. I’m so glad we were together,” I said.


*names changed to protect privacy

Does that story sound crazy or believable to you? It’s hard to believe – unless it happens to you. That guy was under the influence of demons. He came in and confirmed that what we were talking about was accurate and important. If it wasn’t, he wouldn’t have come.

The dark side hates to be revealed – just talking about it brings it to the light and reduces its power. Now Linda knows what’s going on and what the Lord wants to work on in her life. That helps her because now she won’t be so worried about this man in her life. Instead she will be focused on allowing the Lord to heal that place in her heart that is afraid to confront this man’s behavior. This will strengthen her in her identity and give her the confidence she needs.

I am so thankful that the Lord joined us for coffee that night! He said he would be there whenever two or three are gathered. 🙂

Has anything ever happened to you like this? Feel free to share it in the comments below.

Lack is a LIE

The Lord has been really emphasizing to my heart that “Lack is a LIE!”

Jesus Christ has given us everything that pertains to life and godliness. He IS our Life. He is all that we need and He is our Provider.

The enemy uses deceptive strategies to get us to believe the lie of Lack. Like a magician’s illusion, we rely on what we see with our eyes and we become convinced that we lack.

But in Christ’s kingdom, there is no lack. He provides for all our needs.

Part of the enemy’s strategy is to get us to question whether or not God is a good provider. The question behind the strategy is always, “Is God really that good?”

If we give in to this doubt, then we believe the lie of lack and just like the law of attraction says, we will attract lack to our lives.

Lack is feeling alone, like no one cares. Lack is not having the resources you need (i.e. money to pay bills, the right job, etc.). Lack is feeling “less than” in your sense of self or in your relationships. There are so many areas where we can experience Lack.

But if we will turn to the Lord and say, “Lack is a Lie. I don’t believe it. Please show me where my provision is.” He will show us!

Many of us are familiar with the acronym for FEAR as False Evidence Appearing Real. Here’s one for LACK – Lying About Christ’s Kingdom.

When we focus on the lack and put our faith in its reality, then we are lying about Christ’s kingdom. We are saying there isn’t enough, God is not a good provider, I am all alone and no one cares about my lack.

We are NEVER alone, God is always providing what we need (maybe not always what we want, but always what we need) and there is always enough! God is always looking out for everything that concerns us. He cares for us like a good parent.

Ask the Lord to show you this personally. I’m just sharing what He has been saying to me … I hope it gives you courage to stand up to the lie. 🙂