Set Free from Evil – Coming to the Lord after much hurt
The form of "Christianity" I was taught when younger really was not truly what the Bible teaches. I was raised as a Catholic although I hardly ever went to church. We were taught that the way a person is saved was by taking communion. Jesus to me was some distant figure in the stained glass window who held a lamb over his shoulder. I never really knew who he was and what it was all about. All I knew is that he was represented as a person nailed to a crucifix.
I never knew God. All I knew were some meaningless church rituals. My mother never knew God either. She was later drawn to occultism in a search for something in the spirit world that was personal. God seemed like a million miles away to her. She began by getting into using an Ouija board to contact the spirit world. The board swore constantly. It's predictions came true quite often however. But my mother was afraid because it predicted bad things. It said that I would grow up to be a hellion. My mother and my aunt used to sit there blindfolded using the board and had a third person jot down everything that was spelled out. It went so fast the person barely had time to jot it all down. One day my mother and aunt decided to ask it what it was and it told them it was a female whore. They finally decided to break the board up and get rid of it. They knew this thing must have been evil.
Then some years later my mother got involved in drawing up horoscopes to predict people's future and reading Tarot cards for them. She also read several books by mediums such as Edgar Cayce and Seth. My mother and uncle went to psychic fairs where they had their palms read. They dabbled in just about every magic art that was popular at the time.
My mother read Tarot cards for a friend of hers one time and the prediction was that this person's next-door neighbor would die within a week. My mother laughed and thought that it was ludicrous and wouldn't happen. Well, that person's neighbor was mugged and thrown over a bridge in town and died by the end of the week. My mother then thought it was just some kind of coincidence.
Then she read cards again for another friend. This time she predicted death and the number two. She laughed again thinking it was silly. She returned to that friend's house two months later however and was approached by her friend's daughter screaming at her that she was a witch. The girl said to my mother crying, "Go away you witch!!! My best friend died on her 22nd birthday which was Feb. 2nd!!! I hate you, leave you witch!!" My mother then finally realized that it wasn't a game and quit reading cards.
When I was younger, about 12, during the time she was still involved with such things one day I went over to look at the cards on the counter. I touched them and looked at each one. One had a Satan symbol on it, another a pentagram, another was a wealth card, another was a death card. I put them down and went and sat on our couch.
Suddenly something came and paralyzed me. I just could not move a muscle. I tried to move my arm or leg and it wouldn't budge. I tried to open my eyes, I tried to scream. No matter how hard I tried I just could not move. And each time I tried to move I had a really horrible pain in the back of my head. I couldn't even move my finger! It was horrible. It was like my body was asleep but I was wide awake in it and trapped! There was nothing I could do but be stuck there. Then suddenly I could see the whole room although my eyes we shut. Then instantly the whole room turned silver and all of a sudden all I heard was hideous laughter coming from every corner of the room. I didn't see any figures. I just heard the laughter. It was hideous, horrible laughter and I was in the middle of all of it. And one laugh was louder than the rest. Then suddenly it stopped and I was able to move again.
I didn't know why this event had happened to me. I was unable to really process the whole thing. There was no one to talk to about it and if I told anyone they would just think I was crazy. So what I did was try and put the whole thing out of my mind. I watched tv and tried not to think about it.
This caused me to be an insomniac as a child. I would fear that this would happen to me again. And other things did happen to me. Although the events were few and far between they were so awful that I dreaded the next time it would happen. Things calmed down after my mother got scared out of Tarot card reading.
Then soon someone came along in my life who introduced me to something I hadn't really known before. I was only 15 but for the first time in my life had a male person love me. My father had left my mother when I was just four years old. So I had never known a father. It was a big gap in my life. This boy's name was Peter. He was the same age. We met in highschool English class while studying Romeo and Juliet. And boy I tell ya, for 15 year olds we were pretty "intense". I loved him more than anything I had ever known.
Then after being together for only 9 months he suddenly broke up with me one day. I was devastated. I was hoping he was just confused and we would get back together. But he totally ignored me. If I even said hi to him in the hallway, although I knew he heard me, he wouldn't even look my way. I was crushed. It as if some truck came and ran me over. I did not know how I could go on.
The whole summer break from school went by and I didn't bother him. But I still held out hope. Then when school started in September I was hoping he would have a change of heart. I picked up the phone and called him in the evening. It took all my courage to do it. And he answered. I talked but he acted like he didn't want to talk to me. He gave short answers like, "yeah" and acted bored. I suddenly cried, "You don't really want to talk to me!" And slammed the phone down. Then I ran out the door determined to run in front of a huge mac truck on the highway near where we lived. We lived off of a major highway that had huge trucks going by at the maximum speed limit.
It was a really rainy stormy night all of a sudden. It was pouring rain. It was so bad that on the road the traffic was barely moving. I would step out in front of a car and they would stop immediately because they would see me in their headlights. I finally gave up and walked over to my old nearby elementary school and sat on the swings.
As I sat there I thought about how unfair my life had been. How I had been jipped out of having a father. How I had a minor disability (dyslexia), how I was poor, how I was being raised by a mother who was cruel to me. And how I had been molested by some stranger at the age of four. I was most of all angry at God because I had lost this boyfriend I had dearly loved. I told God that he must have known what my life would turn out like and asked him why he didn't want me to be loved. I accused Him of not loving me. I truly felt at that moment that no one loved me. I was brokenhearted, devastated and empty. There was nothing to live for.
I then went back to the road hoping some stranger would just attack me and my life could be done away with. I didn't care what happened to me. Then my mother's car drove up beside me with my neighbor in it. They told me to get in the car but I just ignored them. Then finally when they saw that I was not responding and just kept on walking my neighbor got out of the car and physically forced me into the car. I fought her but I was no match for her as she was huge.
I sat there between my mother and neighbor looking blankly ahead. I didn't talk to anyone. My mother put her arm around me and told me she loved me. I just threw her arm off and said nothing. Then when we were home I was questioned by the both of them. But all I did was sit there looking hollow and not responding at all. My neighbor was so frustrated that she finally gave up and left. I finally went to bed around 11pm.
As I laid in bed everything was quiet, then I suddenly overheard my mother weeping to herself. She must have been crying over me I figured. I quietly laughed to myself glad that I had hurt her because she had been so miserable to me all my life. Then when she was finally done I started to talk to God in my head again.
This time I told God how much I hated myself. I told him I hated being me. That I wanted to be anyone else but me, that I hated my own company. I loathed myself so much that I told God that I wanted to go to hell. I told God to send me to hell. Then I told him that I was angry with him for what he allowed to happen to me in my life. I told him I had a lousy life and it was all his fault. And that if he loved me he would have made sure I didn't wind up in a life like this. I told him I hated him and called him every swear word I could think of. Then I told him that I would just live the rest of my life to hurt him back and I would do that by hurting everyone around me.
Then after I did all of that amazingly I felt really relaxed. Like some big weight had been lifted off my shoulders. It was as if something got up and left! It was like the struggle to be good in life had finally ended. I usually felt very "tense" all the time, but I felt really relaxed and went right to sleep.
But then a few hours later I woke right up feeling fear and a sense of some very powerful presence outside of my window. I could not see it but could sense it somehow. It was tremendously powerful. And I could hear a distant swirling noise. I was terrified. This sound came closer and closer and I found that I was unable to move. It happened just as it had in the past. My body was paralyzed. I couldn't move and every attempt met with a terrible pain. I was just stuck there as this thing came closer and closer.
Then this thing was in my room. Finally it was hovering over me. I still could not see anything. Then it came into me and as it did my thoughts were shut up like water would be behind a dam. It was as if I had amnesia. I suddenly had no recollection of who I was, where I was, my past, nothing. All I had was a feeling of "existence" and able to process what was happening at that moment. Suddenly I was transported to this place of outer darkness. Imagine stepping off of a space ship into the void of utter darkness and aloneness. I was alone in that place. There was no life, no earth, no people, no sunshine, no God, no nothing. It was the most horrible thing you can imagine. And actually you couldn't even imagine this. It is beyond that. It was so horrible that if it was hell adding fire wouldn't have made it any worse. It was a feeling of being lost. Nothing can be more horrible than that. Then suddenly I was back into my body. And I heard this voice speak to me. I still to this day don't know what spoke to me. But this is what it said, and I still haven't made sense of it either. It said this, "YOU DON'T NEED ME". It was this creepy, make your hair stand on end whispery voice. And I heard it not just with my ears but with every cell of my body. Then it left and I was able to move again and my thoughts came rushing back into my mind like the dam had been broken.
The first thing I thought to say was, "God, God, God, God…" over and over. I was so shaken that I could not even form a sentence in my mind right away. I was just hoping that God could still hear me. Then I begged him to forgive me for what I had said to him earlier. I told him I was sorry and that I would not live the rest of my life to hurt others or take revenge on him. I asked him to protect me from this place and told him that I would serve him the rest of my life. I told God I would give him my whole life and do whatever he wanted me to do with my life. I told God that I would start seeking for Him first thing in the morning. And I would continue to seek Him all my days.
Well, the next day the first place I went was to the public library. I really didn't know where else to start. So I went to the library and checked out a bunch of religious books. I took about a dozen or so books home and read them one after another. I would get to the middle of each book and realize that whatever I was searching for just wasn't there and threw it in the pile of half read books.
Then I came across this book called, HOW TO BECOME BORN AGAIN by Billy Graham. I had picked that book out of the library since I thought to myself, "I really do need to be born over again since I really screwed up this life so far." As I read that book I realized I had found some kind of key that I was looking for to the whole thing. I knew beyond a shadow of a doubt that I had found it!!
The book said that the Bible says, "All have sinned and fall short of the glory of God. That no one is righteous, no not one." And that we all deserve death and hell for the sins we have committed. I was already going to hell long before I had ever blasphemed God as I did. Then the book said that Jesus did not come for the righteous but sinners and gave a verse that said, "The healthy do not need a physician".
I was told that I could not earn my way to heaven by good works and that the Bible says our righteousness is as filthy rags. I was taught in the Catholic church that you had to earn your way to heaven by being good enough.
It then said that Jesus the only one who led a holy and sinless on life on earth. And that he laid his life down in our place to receive the punishment for our sins that we rightly deserved. A righteous God cannot have sin in his presence and Jesus atoned for our sins and his blood paid the due penalty for our sins. And that if we gave our lives to Jesus and accepted him as Lord of our life that our sins would be buried in his death. And that we would have a new life. The old life would die and we would be given a new one. The Bible says we become a "New Creature". And that we would be "Born Again". That this is what being "born again" meant. In this new life however I would die to myself and live only for Christ and he would lead me all my days. That his spirit would live inside me and guide me and teach me. So, I gave my life to Jesus on September 3rd, 1980. And that is how I became a Christian.
I was so confused back then about all the strange things that had happened to me and read this verse, "God is not the author of confusion". I told God to please make sense of everything so I can someday understand. And from that day forward I began to understand more and more. I understood that God really did love me after all even though I accused him of not loving me. The Bible says that we love him because He first loved us. He loved us so much that he gave his only begotton Son. No greater love has any man than this the Bible says, that he lay down his life for his friends. Jesus never lived any of his life on this earth for himself but gave up everything for our sakes and even died a most humiliating death. But he conquered death when he rose again from the dead. The Bible says he now holds the KEYS TO DEATH AND HELL because he conquered the grave. That he spoiled the principalities and powers and overcame the enemy (Satan). He promises all those who follow him that they will all be raised from the dead as He when death is swallowed up in victory and we will sing, "Death where is your sting?"
Revelation 1:18 I am the Living One; I was dead, and behold I am alive for ever and ever! And I hold the keys of death and Hades.