Category Archives:Abuse

Be Aware: Occult Symbolism that is Hidden in Plain Sight

Over thirty years ago I was involved with Menconi Ministries, an organization founded on keeping parents involved in their children’s lives. The purpose was to aid parents and grandparents in connecting communicating with their children and grandchildren so they could instill family values and lead them to Jesus. One of these ways was to be informed as to the music these children were listening to and to share with them the dangers of the modern day musicians. As most of you know, Lucifier, (Satan) was the Worship leader in Heaven. He  is now the worship leader of the Earth. Not of Christ Jesus, but to himself. This is a perfect example:

There are many symbolisms and occult references that stand out in the music culture today. From historical artifacts, to the music artists today, it seems the occult world has never really gone away, but in fact has become more flagrant and blatant. The problem is that many are unaware of the meanings behind what many consider to be just artistic entertainment that appeals to the senses with no real hidden meanings, or agendas behind them. There are many artists that promote their music through occult influence. The evidence that will be provided will show striking similarities with occult ideologies that are synonymous with many artists in the music industry.

Kanye West is a popular musical artist who promotes music and imagery with deep occult meaning, which is rooted in Freemasonry. The pictures presented will parallel historical pictures from ancient cultures to recent ones. There are too many similarities for it to be just coincidence. The music culture has aligned itself with something much more than just poetic lyrics and sounds, but is progressing into something much bigger that is symbolic of the veil that is thinning between the physical and spiritual realm. It is important to be aware of the occult agenda that is manifesting in greater force these days.

The representation of the pillars behind Kanye West are ubiquitous with many cultures as an entrance, or gateway which holds the key to power and enlightenment. Kanye West is pictured at the gateway as the chosen one to represent the hidden rulers of the world that reside behind him.

The ancient Egyptian god, or deity known as Horus was considered to be the Sky god, which represented the symbol of the single seeing eye. The one eye is the most well known in occult symbolism as the all-seeing-eye; the Great Seal of the United States originates from Horus

The symbolism of Horus is very important in Freemasonry. The path of the initiate, through the Masonic degrees, is described as the process by which the Eye of Horus is opened.

The pillared gateway is for the exclusive illuminated ones. Kanye West is wearing a Horus pendant, which has importance and significant meaning not only in ancient Egyptian culture, but in Freemasonry as well.

The horned females next to Kanye represent two goddesses ofancient Egypt, Isis and Hathor. Isis was the goddess of nature, magic, and motherhood. Hathor was the goddess of music, dance, and fertility. They are known as the protectors of the dead as they journey into the afterlife.

In the occult, the initiate symbolically dies and is reborn. Kanye West is standing under the sword of Damocales as part of a Masonic ritual to obtain the 33rd degree. The rite happens in public; the more there are witnesses, the more power is given. In a metaphorical sense, Kanye West kills off his former self and is reborn to receive power right in front of the eyes of the public audience.

 

Eight Ways Jesus Suffered for You

1. He was betrayed by His disciple Judas. Jesus’ pain was not just physical. Can you imagine the sorrow He felt when one of His own trusted friends became the ultimate traitor? We aren’t exactly sure how to calculate the modern value of 30 pieces of silver, but many scholars suggest about $950. All the pain Jesus endured on Good Friday began the night before, when Judas took blood money to have his Master arrested.

Think about it: There’s a bit of Judas in all of us, and we all betrayed Jesus to get our own way. Yet He chose to forgive us!

2. He was abandoned by His other followers. We often focus on Peter’s denial of Jesus. But the Scriptures remind us that all of Jesus’ disciples “left Him and fled” after His arrest (Mark 14:50, NASB). Jesus had to suffer alone. All the men He had taught and invested in for three and a half years abandoned Him in His hour of need.

Think about it: Jesus paid it all. He accomplished His work of redemption without our help. But He forgave us for our denials!

3. He carried the burden of the sins of the world. Jesus’ greatest agony didn’t start on the cross. It began at Gethsemane, where God laid on His Son the sins of the world. Jesus agonized so intensely in those moments that He sweat drops of blood (Luke 22:44). Scholars say He probably developed a condition known as hematidrosis, in which blood is emitted through the sweat glands because of intense stress.

Think about it: Your sin was transferred to Jesus’ account, and He bore the punishment you deserved!

4. He was falsely accused and rejected by Jewish leaders. Can you imagine the heartache Jesus experienced when the very people He was sent to save spat in His face, blindfolded Him, cursed Him and accused Him of blasphemy? The Sanhedrin set up a kangaroo court and sentenced the Son of God to death.

Think about it: Jesus did not open His mouth in self-defense when He was falsely accused. Now, when Satan accuses you, Jesus argues your case and declares you not guilty!

5. He was mocked and abused by Roman guards. After Pilate caved into pressure from the Jews, Roman soldiers flogged Jesus with a whip, drove a crown of thorns into His scalp, beat His head with sticks and mockingly pretended to worship Him. The flogging alone—which would have involved leather cords with pieces of lead or bone attached—would have drained much of Jesus’ blood.

Think about it: Jesus could have called on angels to stop His torture—but He chose to endure the pain because He loved us!

6. He was crucified between two thieves. We cannot even fathom the pain of crucifixion. Metal spikes were driven into Jesus’ hands and feet, and He had to slide His mangled body up against the wood of the cross in order to catch His breath. And because it was the habit of Romans to crucify criminals naked, Jesus endured the ultimate shame. What’s more, He hung on that crude cross next to two men who had been convicted of crimes—while He was completely innocent.

Think about it: We should have been on death row, not Jesus. But He took our place!

7. His body was pierced with a spear. Even after Jesus took His last breath, a soldier jabbed a spear up through the chest cavity—most likely to make sure Jesus was dead. John tells us that blood and water spilled out (John 19:34), evidence that the spear pierced the pericardium, the sac around the heart. Jesus’ heart was literally broken for us.

Think about it: Just as Adam’s side was opened to bring forth the first woman, Jesus’ side was opened to bring forth the church. His piercing produced a fountain of life for us!

8. He tasted death for all. This is the most horrible reality of the cross. Christ did not die metaphorically or symbolically. He died literally. The Son of God, who had never sinned—and who was least deserving of death—died so we could have life. His heart stopped beating, He stopped breathing and His spirit left Him. First Peter 3:18 says: “For Christ also died for sins once and for all, the just for the unjust, so that He might bring us to God.”

Think about it: Because Jesus died in our place, we no longer have to die. Eternal life is His free gift to us!

This Easter season, ponder the steps the Savior took from Gethsemane to Golgotha. Look at His nail-pierced hands and feet. Take a careful survey of His wondrous cross, and thank Him for hanging there six hours for you.

 

Christians and Alcohol

Amazing Fact
According to Paul Harvey, tests show that after drinking three bottles of beer, there is an average of 13 percent net memory loss. After taking only small quantities of alcohol, trained typists were tested and their errors increased 40 percent. Only one ounce of alcohol increases the time required to make a decision by nearly 10 percent; hinders muscular reaction by 17 percent; increases errors due to lack of attention by 35 percent.
Is it biblically permissible for a Christian to drink alcohol? If so, how much?
This controversial subject has evoked many passionate opinions among Christians. Why? Is God’s Word silent or in any way unclear about alcohol?
I submit that the Bible is in no way ambiguous when it speaks on alcohol and how it relates to God’s followers. I hope the following study will assist you in forming your own biblically based conclusions on this important subject.

Two Opposing Camps
Among Christians, there are two primary camps of thought on this sensitive topic. The first group argues that Jesus Himself drank wine, and since a Christian is a follower of Christ, how can it be forbidden? And generally, they add with a moderate air: “but even so, drinking should not be done to excess.”
Then there is the other position: Alcohol is an addictive and destructive drug that no sincere Christian should use to any degree.
Of course, between these two diametrically opposed poles, there are countless variations of opinions. In fairness, I will state from the beginning that I am firmly in the unfermented camp! I believe that scriptural references to Jesus’ use of wine are of the grape juice variety.

What Is Alcohol?
Let’s begin with a definition. There are many forms of this compound called alcohol. However, there is no mistaking that all of them are classified as poisons—toxins to the human body. The alcohol found in beverages such as beer, wine, and brandy is ethanol (C2H5OH), a clear, highly flammable liquid that has a burning taste and a characteristic odor.

What happens when one consumes this type of alcohol? Well, death usually occurs if the concentration of ethanol in the bloodstream exceeds about five percent! But even for those who use it sparingly, immediate behavioral changes, impairment of vision and unconsciousness can occur at lower concentrations. That’s interesting, isn’t it? That’s exactly the same effect that other illicit drugs such as heroin, and even marijuana, have on those who use those substances. I doubt there are any Christian churches that would ordain the use of these drugs in even a casual social setting—or even to “calm the nerves” before bedtime. Is there any reason that alcohol should not be included in this list of drugs to avoid?

Two Types of Wine-Biblically Speaking
The word “wine” in the Bible sometimes refers to the new—or fresh juice of the grape; other times it is used to describe the aged or fermented product containing the drug alcohol. The translators never used the term “grape juice.” In the Hebrew text, the writers use different words to distinguish between the two. The word tîyrôsh is used for new unfermented wine, and yayin is generally used for fermented wine. However, in the New Testament, only one Greek word is used to describe both fermented and fresh grape juice: oinis . But this shouldn’t be a problem. By simply understanding the context of the word in a passage, the appropriate meaning will usually surface. So unless the passage says old or new wine (as in Matthew 9:17, Mark 2:22, and in Luke 5:37–39:And no one puts new wine into old wineskins; otherwise the new [fermenting] wine will [expand and] burst the skins and it will be spilled out, and the skins will be ruined. 38 But new wine must be put into fresh wineskins. 39 And no one, after drinking old wine, wishes for new; for he says, ‘The old is fine”), the context will often tell us what kind of grape juice is being described. Note: A skin was a bag made from the skin of an animal. New wine was always put in a new bag so that the bag would stretch as the wine continued to ferment, and then the bag would harden. An old bag would burst if new wine was put in it. Obviously, the new wine would be the fresh unfermented kind.
Additionally, from the Old Testament, in Isaiah 65:8, we read,

“This is what the Lord says,

“As the new wine is found in the cluster,
And one says, ‘Do not destroy it, for there is a blessing and benefit in it,’
So I will do for the sake of My servants
In order not to destroy all of them.

It is clear in both these passages that the new wine is simply grape juice.

Clarifying Confusing Verses
The whole of Scripture is clearly and adamantly against the consumption of alcohol, but human nature will look upon any textual ambiguity as a “loophole” to justify drinking alcohol.
An example of this reasoning is the wedding in Cana, where Jesus turned water into wine. “And when the headwaiter tasted the water which had turned into wine, not knowing where it came from (though the servants who had drawn the water knew) he called the bridegroom, 10 and said to him, “Everyone else serves his best wine first, and when people have drunk (or have become intoxicated) freely, then he serves that which is not so good; but you have kept back the good wine until now!’” (John 2:9,10). Those who support the intake of alcohol suggest this must have been alcoholic wine—after all, it was a wedding, and every wedding has wine—right? But let’s pause to consider the implications. There were six pots for Jesus to fill, and each of those would hold 20 to 30 gallons. That’s up to 180 gallons of beverage!
Are we to believe that Jesus made 180 gallons of a destructive drug—enough to get every guest drunk and launch this new marriage with slurring lips and staggering feet? Indeed, He would have been acting against His own Word! Examples: Habakkuk 2:15 “Woe (judgment is coming) to you who make your neighbors drink,
Who mix in your venom to make them drunk
So that you may look at their nakedness!”
Luke 12:46:  the master of that servant will come on a day when he does not expect him and at an hour he does not know, and will cut (a hyperbole for severe punishment short of execution) him in pieces, and assign him a place with the unbelievers.

Ephesians 5:18:  Do not get drunk with wine, for that is wickedness (corruption, stupidity), but be filled with the [Holy] Spirit and constantly guided by Him).

If we approach this passage relying on the whole of Scripture, we must surely come to the conclusion that Jesus made unfermented wine—and the governor of the feast complimented the groom on its pure quality. (John 2:4610: Jesus said to her, “4[Dear] woman, what is that to you and to Me? My time [to act and to be revealed] has not yet come. 6Now there were six stone waterpots set there for the Jewish custom of purification (ceremonial washing), containing twenty or thirty gallons each. 10and said to him, “Everyone else serves his best wine first, and when people have drunk freely, then he serves that which is not so good; but you have kept back the good wine until now.

Whatever the Heart/Soul Desires
There are additional passages of Scripture that at first glance might lead a person to think drinking a little fermented wine in moderation might be biblically condoned. In the next few sections, we will address some of the verses that are sometimes construed to condone fermented wine, when in fact they do nothing of the sort.
 You may spend the money for anything your heart desires: for oxen, or sheep, or wine, or [other] strong drink, or anything else you want. You shall eat there in the presence of the Lord your God and rejoice, you and your household. Deuteronomy 14:26. The phrase “strong drink” is translated from the word shekar. A Shekar is condemned by Solomon as a “brawler” (Wine is a mocker, strong drink a riotous brawler; And whoever is intoxicated by it is not wise. Proverbs 20:1). And Isaiah pronounces a woe upon those who “run after strong drink(shekar)” (Woe (judgment is coming) to those who rise early in the morning to pursue intoxicating drink, Who stay up late in the night till wine inflames them! Isaiah 5:11). Strong drink was also prohibited from the priests “(This prohibition may imply that intoxication precipitated the irreverent behavior that resulted in the death of Aaron’s two older sons)Do not drink wine or intoxicating drink, neither you nor your sons with you, when you come into the Tent of Meeting, so that you will not die—it is a permanent statute throughout your generations— 10 and to make a distinction and recognize a difference between the holy (sacred) and the common (profane), and between the [ceremonially] unclean and the clean;11 and you are to teach the Israelites all the statutes which the Lord has spoken to them through (Lit by the hand of) Moses.” Leviticus 10:9–11, and Nazarites as stated in Numbers 6:2–4: Say to the sons of Israel, ‘When a man or a woman makes a special vow, the vow of a Nazirite, that is, one separated and dedicated to the Lordhe shall abstain from wine and strong drink; he shall drink no vinegar, whether made from wine or strong drink, nor shall he drink any grape juice nor eat fresh or dried grapes. All (Lit All the days of his consecration and so throughout) the time of his separation he shall not eat anything produced from the grapevine, from the seeds even to the skins and in Judges 13:3–5: And the Angel (“Angel” has been capitalized here to reflect the likelihood that it is God appearing in a visible form (see v 22 and note Gen 16:7) of the Lord appeared to the woman and said to her, “Behold, you are infertile and have no children, but you shall conceive and give birth to a son. Therefore, be careful not to drink wine or [any other] intoxicating drink, and do not eat anything [ceremonially] unclean. For behold, you shall conceive and give birth to a son. No razor shall come upon his head, for the boy shall be a Nazirite (The rules and regulations for a Nazirite are stated in Numbers 6:2-21. Ordinarily a person would take the vow of a Nazirite for a limited period of time as a voluntary act of dedication to God, but Samson’s was a special, divinely-ordained case) [dedicated] to God from birth; and he shall begin to rescue Israel from the hands of the Philistines.”

So how could God so clearly condemn the use of “strong drink” in one place in the Bible, and yet approve of it in another place? Like the word yayin (“wine”), shekar is a generic term that could refer to either an alcoholic beverage, as noted above, or to a sweet, unfermented drink as is indicated in Isaiah 24:9: They do not drink wine with a song; Strong drink is bitter to those who drink it.

Shekar is defined by the Popular and Critical Bible Encyclopedia as: “Sweet Wine or Syrup. Shechar, luscious, saccharin drink or sweet syrup, especially sugar or honey of dates or of the palm-tree” or “Date or Palm Wine in its fresh and unfermented state.” In fact, “sugar” and “cider” are derivatives from shekar. Therefore, since shekar could mean either a sweet unfermented drink or an intoxicating drink, we must interpret the word according to the context of the verse. Would God encourage the use of tithe money to purchase a beverage that causes intoxication, health problems and diminishing of moral capacities? The only reasonable conclusion is that this verse is referring to the sweet palm-wine beverage in its fresh and unfermented state.

The Last Supper
Many argue that if Jesus partook of wine at the Last Supper, and even employed it as a symbol of His purifying blood, then how can drinking a little wine, even just casually, be erroneous? Indeed, the very seeds of the New Testament were watered with wine from the Last Supper. There is no arguing that Jesus used wine at the Last Supper, but it is a mistake to assume that the wine was of the fermented variety. 
28 for this is My blood of the [new and better] covenant, which [ratifies the agreement and] is being poured out for many [as a substitutionary atonement: By laying his hands on the head of the sacrifice the one offering the sacrifice identified himself with it and through its death it became an atonement or covering for his sin. Because the unblemished sacrifice “covered” his sin, it placed the one offering the sacrifice in a right relationship with God, just as later under the new covenant the perfection and sacrifice of Christ would cover (atone for) the imperfection and sin of those who identified with Him and accepted Him as Saviorfor the forgiveness of sins.29 But I say to you, I will not drink of this fruit of the vine from now on until that day when I drink it new with you in My Father’s kingdom. Matthew 26:28–29. Indeed, here Jesus uses the new wine as a symbol of His new covenant with His people. Jesus also calls wine the “fruit of the vine.” However, after wine goes through the process of fermentation, it is no more the fruit of the vine than yogurt is the fruit of a cow.
Furthermore, we also know that the Passover meal was to be free from all forms of leaven ( Seven days no leaven shall be found in your houses; whoever eats what is leavened shall be cut off and excluded from [the atonement made for] the congregation of Israel, whether a stranger or native-born. Exodus 12:19). Fermentation is the identical process of leavening! If the bread was to be free from leaven, which is a type of sin, then we can be sure that the wine, a symbol of Jesus blood, used at the Last Supper would also be free from the poison of alcohol. The perfect, sinless blood of Jesus would never be symbolized by corrupt and putrefying old wine.
Jesus compared His pure teachings to wholesome new wine (Nor is new wine put into old [a]wineskins [that have lost their elasticity]; otherwise the wineskins burst, and the [fermenting] wine spills and the wineskins are ruined. But new wine is put into fresh wineskins, so both are preserved. Matthew 9:17). Indeed, all corrupted doctrines are likened to the fermented wine of Babylon! Babylon was identified as a place “with whom the kings of the earth committed fornication, and the inhabitants of the earth were made drunk with the wine of her fornication” (she (Lit Babylon) with whom the kings of the earth have committed acts (figurative reference to cult worship practices and idolatry) of immorality, and the inhabitants of the earth have become intoxicated with the wine of her immorality. Revelation 17:2).

When Jesus hung parched on the cross, Roman soldiers offered him fermented wine mingled with myrrh. But as soon as Jesus tasted it and recognized it was fermented, He refused it. If Jesus refused this beverage even as His body was tormented with extraordinary thirst, why would He have drank wine normally (they offered Him wine mixed with gall (myrrh, a bitter-tasting narcotic) to drink; but after tasting it, He refused to drink it Matthew 27:34)? And more to the point, why then should we?

The Most Deadly Substance on Earth

Abraham Lincoln said, “Drink is a cancer in human society, eating out its vitals and threatening its destruction.” So much devastation is caused by alcohol in our community, on the roads and in homes, that this is hardly a bold or surprising statement. Indeed, even if the Bible were silent on the subject, the object lessons of devastation from a thousand years of history would still be crystal clear. But the scriptures say plenty.
Who has woe? Who has sorrow? Who has strife? Who has complaining?
Who has wounds without cause? Whose eyes are red and dim?
30 Those who linger long over wine, Those who go to taste mixed wine.
31 Do not look at wine when it is red, When it sparkles in the glass,
When it goes down smoothly.
32 At the last it bites like a serpent And stings like a viper.
33 Your [drunken] eyes will see strange thingsAnd your mind will utter perverse things [untrue things, twisted things].
34 And you will be [as unsteady] as one who lies down in the middle of the sea, And [as vulnerable to disaster] as one who lies down on the top of a ship’s mast, saying,
35 “They struck me, but I was not hurt! They beat me, but I did not feel it!
When will I wake up? I will seek more wine.”
(Proverb 23:29–35).
Is it a wonder that with a nation consumed by the false merriment of alcohol, it encourages consumption even to our youngest? There is strong evidence supporting widespread alcohol use and the surge of crime committed by young adults—and even children. (Did you know there are 3.3 million problem drinkers in America’s high schools alone?)
Today, they still teach “moderation” with alcohol, but history has shown that moderation with an addictive drug is impossible.

According to Zig Ziglar, authorities know that approximately one in sixteen people who ever take a social drink will become an alcoholic! Would you even step one foot on an airplane if you knew there was a one in 16 chance that it would crash and end your life? (Actually, the odds for a commercial airliner crashing are closer to one in a million—but even with those odds some people will not fly. Yet many of these same people will take a drink!)
Consider this other well-known fact: In the next 24 hours, alcohol will be responsible for nearly half of all…

  • … the homicides.
  • …the people who will die on the highway.
  • …the people who will be admitted to the hospital.
  • …the people who will be incarcerated in jail or prison.
  • …the people who will be arrested for domestic violence.
  • …the people who will be born with birth defects.

In addition, alcohol deserves a mention for being responsible for a quarter of all suicides.
It’s clear enough from these appalling statistics that any clear-thinking citizen, especially a Christian, would feel profound conviction to avoid a drug that accounts for a veritable tidal wave of misery to every culture it touches. If we truly love our brother and God, how can we defend drinking alcohol in any degree? Paul said he would neither eat flesh or drink wine or do anything that caused offense to a brother: “It is good [to do the right thing and] not eat meat or drink wine, or do anything that offends your brother and weakens him spiritually” Romans 14:21).

With so many alcoholics struggling to be saved from their addictions, we must never cause them to stumble again by being even slightly inconsistent in our example.
So submit to [the authority of] God. Resist the devil [stand firm against him] and he will flee from you. Come close to God [with a contrite heart] and He will come close to you. Wash your hands, you sinners; and purify your [unfaithful] hearts, you double-minded [people]. James 4:7-8
Put simply: It lowers a Christian’s resolve to resist temptation. Why would any Christian want to make it easier for the devil to snare them? Many men and women have awaken after a night baptized by a few glasses of wine or bottles of beer to discover they have violated the Seventh Commandment and forever scarred their lives and reputations.
Therefore if the Son makes you free, you shall be free indeed” John 8:36

Everyone Worships Something. Yes, I Said Everyone!

While I am NOT an expert in any of these areas, I have experienced many of them. By the grace of God I am an overcomer. It is a daily struggle but I trust in Him to get me through one day at a time. He has brought me through so much in my 58 years of life; He can and will do same for you if you will allow Him.

As a child, I led a normal life with the exception that I felt closer to my dad than my mom. At the age of 13 I discovered that my mom was not my birth mother. Truly it did not matter, as she always loved me as her own. My only regret is that my parents had not been honest with my step-brother (I call him brother to this day) and I sooner.

When I was a baby, 1-1/2 years old, my biological mother left my two half-brothers and I with my dad to be with another man. Granted I was too small to remember, but my half-brothers were older. After approximated six weeks following her departure, my dad took my two half-brothers to their maternal grandmother’s house a short distance away from where we lived. We were not to see one another until I was 19 years old.

My mom, the one who raised me, married my dad when I was 4 years old. She brought with her my brother with whom I was raised. We had a fairly normal life. We were a happy family. About two weeks before my 13th birthday I was caught shoplifting at our local mall. I had been shoplifting for close to two years by this time. Honestly, I was glad that I was caught. I knew right from wrong and it ate me up inside. You see God has created all of us with the need to worship. Who or what we choose to worship is our choice.  Praise and worship seems to be universal. Have you ever heard of an explorer finding a new tribe or culture that doesn’t worship? Worship is a natural instinct and a basic need for every person. A simple definition of worship is to regard with great devotion or to honor as a divine being. Take a second to think about what you are most devoted to in this life and ask yourself, “Is it worthy of my devotion; do I worship a divine being?”

We don’t all worship the same God, but everyone worships something or someone. Since we all worship, we should question the reason for this desire. The most logical conclusion is that we were created by a higher being for the very purpose of worship. Addiction is a worship problem.

The ongoing quest of man is to find answers to the fundamental questions of human origin, human nature, and human destiny. There is one book that has the answers to all these questions, including our questions about worship. The Bible is the wonderful and mysterious book that God has chosen as a way to communicate with us. God loves you and will not force you to love Him back. That’s genuine love.

The Lord your God is with you,
the Mighty Warrior who saves.
He will take great delight in you;
in his love he will no longer rebuke you,
but will rejoice over you with singing.” Zephaniah 3:17.

In the weeks to follow I will be sharing more of my journey thus far with you in hopes that God will touch your life and lead you to a relationship with Him. He never promises that we won’t go through trials and suffering, but if you are truly a child of God, He promises to get you through it. Jesus teaches us, “I have told you these things, so that in me you may have peace. In this world you will have trouble. But take heart! I have overcome the world.” John 16:33. I implore you to give Him chance. You will NEVER regret it.

Please feel free to contact me through this website, confidentially of course. I have added a ‘contact me’ page for this purpose.   I do not have all the answers, but I will do my best to get you any help you might need throughout this journey we call life. Blessings to you all.

Are You Struggling With Addiction (s)? 

Although a churchgoing Christian,  for many years I had secret addictions, sex and primarily, drugs.  What I have learned is that instead of depending on my own power , I learned to be filled (continually as Ephesians 5:18 teaches) with the power of The Holy Spirit.  That is where I found my Victory.  Halleluyah! It was not until I finally admitted defeat and began to humbly walk with the True and Living God,  the Creator of heaven and earth and all living things,  that I began to experience freedom.  I know without a doubt that there are many others like myself who are struggling with addiction;  perhaps drugs,  perhaps gambling,  perhaps sex or even abuse.  Take it from me hope is available.  Call on Jesus.  Yes,  you may need rehab but consider it a blessing,  a start to your freedom..  Might I suggest that you also confide in someone you trust (I confided in Pastor Chuck Smith) and use a facility that is led by Christ.  I pray this will bless you. Don’t beat yourself up.  Besides,  God Almighty already knows.  Nothing is hidden from Him.  He loves and values you.  You are His treasure !

God Is Good

The Lord is good (Nahum 1:7),

That is a basic foundation of theology that we must, all of us, incorporate into our own understanding. God is good. If you don’t know anything else, know that God is good. It’s important that you know that, and that is something that I accept by faith. Believing the word of God, I accept by faith that God is good, because not always would my circumstances indicate that God was good. And Satan is constantly assailing the truth of the goodness of God. And so often, as I’m looking at adverse situations, I’m prone to say, “If God is so good, then why is this happening?” Don’t you hear that so very often from people, “If God is good, why are there so many people starving in Cambodia? If God is good, why does He allow this to happen in the world? Why does He allow a little nine-year-old girl to get kidnapped if God is good?” There are always those challenges to the goodness of God that are thrown at us. Satan is always challenging that truth. And thus, I need to have that truth deeply, firmly ingrained within me. God is good, that I know.

There is a very interesting Psalm, it’s about the seventy-third Psalm, where the psalmist begins by the declaration, “Truly the Lord is good unto Israel, and unto all those that fear Him.” And he begins that psalm with that basic premise. But then he said, “As for me, man, when I tried to understand the world around me, I was almost wiped out, my foot almost slipped when I saw the prosperity of the wicked and I saw how well they got along. I looked at my own problems and everything else, and here I’m trying to serve God. I’ve tried to have a clean heart. I’ve tried to do the right things, and everybody’s just pushing me down, and I’m in trouble. Here are these guys cheating, lying, stealing, blaspheming, and they seem to have no problems at all. Everything seems to fall in line for them. When I sought to know this,” he said, “it was too painful for me; I almost was wiped out!” Satan can really play games with your mind. Especially regarding the goodness of God. He challenges that continually. The psalmist said, “I was almost wiped out when I tried to understand it,” he said, “until I went into the sanctuary of God. And, then,” he said, “I saw their end. I was jealous of the wicked; I was jealous of the ungodly man. It seems he has everything, until I went into the sanctuary of God.” And then what happened? His vision was corrected. In the sanctuary of God that nearsightedness was corrected, and he began to get the long view of things. You see, the goodness of God is that which is always challenged by our nearsightedness, when we are only looking at the immediate things that surround us. It is then that I’m prone to challenge the goodness of God. Things are going bad for me today, “If God’s so good, how come things are going so bad today?” See, it’s today, and it’s my hurt right now, and it’s the pain I feel right now. I don’t look down the road; I’m only looking at that which is right in front of my face. “Until I went into the sanctuary of God, and then I began to get things in perspective, and then I began to get the eternal view, and the sight of eternity comes into view, and somehow in that eternal view things begin to balance out.” That’s our problem is that we don’t have the long-term view, and we get confused. Satan can really upset us. But how many of those things as you look back in your own life that you thought were disasters, now as you look at them, you can see the hand of God and realize how important they were for your development, or how important they were even for your future. God put me in some places that you just can’t believe. I mean it was just plain tough. And in those situations, down on my knees before God, the questions, the challenging of the goodness of God, “God, if You’re so good, why do I have all these problems? Why did You put me here, God, in this place with these people?” And yet, now as I look back on it, oh the invaluable lessons that God was teaching me. How important those lessons that I learned. I could not have the ministry that God has given to me today had I not gone through those experiences. There were things that God had to work out of my own life before He could really use me effectively. And though I cried, and though I just went through torture mentally, yet as I look back, now I wouldn’t trade those experiences for anything, for the lessons and the value that they’ve brought to me. As God was working though, I could not see it and I could not understand it. Now I look back and I say, “Oh, the Lord was so good to me!” But I sure didn’t think so at the time. I thought He had forgotten me, forsaken me, and yet, God is good. I need to remember that. Don’t forget that. “And all things work together for good to those who love God” (Romans 8:28). Not only is God good, the prophet said,

[He is] a stronghold in the day of trouble (Nahum 1:7);

God doesn’t promise that you’re never going to have trouble. In the book of Job it says, “As sparks fly upward, so man was born for trouble.” Now, I don’t know of anybody who hasn’t had trouble some time in their life. Trouble is just a part of life itself. In Psalm we read, thirty-four, “Many are the afflictions of the righteous.” Somehow, we think because we’re righteous we should never have any affliction, everything should go well, after all, I love God and I’m trying to do the right thing, everyone should love me and treat me nice. Nothing evil should ever happen to me because I love God and I’m willing to serve God and I’m wanting to please God, therefore everything should always be wonderful and beautiful around me. Well, it wasn’t so with Jesus was it? Jesus said, “Hey, if I being your Lord, and they haven’t received Me, they persecuted Me… Servant’s not greater than… They’re not going to receive you. They’re not going to open up and accept you with open arms. The world’s going to hate you because you love Me!” You’re going to have trouble. But whenever the trouble comes, the Lord is a stronghold. I’ve got a place I can run, I’ve got a place where I can find strength, I’ve got a place where I can be protected. The Lord is a stronghold to those that are in trouble. The thing is, if you’re not a child of God, when trouble comes, you have no place to go. But the child of God always has a refuge. “The name of the Lord is a strong tower, the righteous runneth into it, and is safe.” Then he declares,

and he knoweth them that trust in him (Nahum 1:7).

God knows those that are trusting. God knows you, isn’t that great? God knows me. Not only does He know me, and of course, this is just boggling to my own mind, and it’s just, again, that gap between the finite and the infinite, and the ability for… inability for us to really bridge it. But God not only knows me, He’s thinking about me constantly. That just blows my mind. That God would be constantly thinking about me. David said, “And if I should number thy thoughts concerning me, they are more than the sands of the sea.” How I love to go down to the beach and just take and pick up sand and let it run through my hands and watch the little grains make a little pile on the beach there. And as I do, I think, “Every one of those grains of sand there is a thought that God is thinking of me.” Fabulous! Then I look up the beach and I see all those grains of sand. I think, “Oh, God, who can fathom Your love, and Your wisdom, and Your glory, that You should think of me?” How many grains of sand are there in the earth? Someone has estimated there’s ten to the twenty-fifth power. That’s an awful lot of thinking. It’d take an infinite God to have that many thoughts. God is thinking about you. God knows you. God knows the situations that you’re in. God knows the trials that you have. God knows the problems that you face. Really that’s all that I need to be reminded of when I’m in trouble and I start to despair. All someone has to say is, “Hey, don’t worry, Judi. God knows all about it.” Oh, thank you. I needed that. God knows the way of the righteous. His ears are open to their cries.

 

Lose Yourself to Gain Yourself

When I was dealing with despair I noticed that it was because I was putting my focus and trust in everything else besides God. I was constantly dwelling on my problems and taking my eyes off of God.

When you do this that gives the devil an opportunity to tell lies such as God is not near you and He will not help you.

Please don’t listen to these lies. I found out what I was doing wrong and I went into prayer mode.

Take your eyes off the things of this world. Allow difficulty to bring you to your knees in prayer. Fight off those lies by crying for help. Trust in the Lord, not your circumstances.

The key to overcoming despair is keeping your mind on the Lord, which will keep your mind at peace.

Take your eyes off the things of this world. Allow difficulty to bring you to your knees in prayer. Fight off those lies by crying for help. Trust in the Lord, not your circumstances.

My Story

I was born in Orange California in 1958. When I was 1 ½ years old my biological mother took my grandfather’s car and abandoned my dad, 2 half-brothers and I. She had an affair with a friend of my dad’s and moved to Illinois. After six weeks or so my dad and grandpa went to bring the car back. Dad took my brothers to their grandma’s house and proceeded to get sole custody of me; very rare for the courts to award custody to the father in 1960. For approximately four years dad raised me on his own with the help of my grandma and aunt. In 1964 he married the woman I call mom, and I gained a mother and brother.

For many years I knew something was different but couldn’t put my hand on what it was. When I was twelve I was caught shoplifting at our city mall. I was not arrested, but my dad was furious. My mom was much more gracious.

On my thirteenth birthday my childhood best friend and I spent the night with my grandparents. I asked my grandma if mom was in fact my biological mother. Grandma told me to talk to my dad. I told her I was asking her because I knew she wouldn’t lie to me. So I found out the truth. When my mom found out that my grandma told me the truth she banned me from seeing my grandma until I was eighteen. Our next door neighbors arranged for my grandma and I to meet at a shopping mall in Costa Mesa. I was elated. Dad knew that I was meeting her and never said a word to my mom. She did find out later, when I was seventeen and they almost divorced over it.

On February 20, 1973, when I was fourteen, a friend in Jr High invited me to go to church with her. We watched a movie entitled “A Thief in the Night.” To this day I love the song, “I Wish We’d All Been Ready.” Afterwards, Billy Graham gave the invitation to accept Jesus in my heart and I responded. The following evening my brother joined us and also gave his life to Jesus.

I counseled teenage new believers whenever Billy was in town. He was an amazing man, so loving and gentle spirited. I also became active in our church choir. Our choir, Presbyterian Youth Chorale traveled every summer to sing for various churches across the United States. My new best friend and I had Bible studies in the hay loft above her family’s garage. We named are secret meeting place “Bethel,” which means “House of God.”

That same year I ended up in the ER for severe stomach pain. The doctors told my dad that I had gonorrhea. He told them he would bet his life I didn’t. After evaluating me and taking x-rays, the doctor told him that I had endometriosis and needed to go to a gynecologist. So I did, and was told I could never have babies. I was devastated, as I had baby sat since I was nine, and loved children. After graduating from High School and attending one year of junior college, I became pregnant. I was engaged to the father of the baby and my dad told him that he would marry me. Against my beliefs, I got an abortion. A couple weeks afterwards when I used the bathroom a little limb came out of me. Instead of getting help I turned to drugs.

I started working for a floor covering company and ended up having an affair with my boss. He was married with three beautiful daughters and one on the way at the time. Even worse, we discussed having an affair. He eventually divorced his wife and we were married after living together for over two years. By now I had an addiction to cocaine and overdosed on my birthday in 1984. We both quit drugs and became involved in ministry at Calvary. My dad never accepted him. Then, two years later I had another affair, and after marriage counselling we my husband and I decided to separate. I am thankful that he has forgiven me, to this day we are friends.

I met a man in 1987, and starting dating him. I became pregnant again, not knowing who the father was, my estranged husband or boyfriend. After talking to them both about the situation, I chose to keep the baby and be a single mom. The baby belonged to my boyfriend, who is in fact an amazing father. Praise God !

In 1991, my half-sister was murdered in Nevada and when I came home after her funeral, I again became pregnant with a girl. Her father wanted me to abort, but this time I refused and chose to keep her. My son’s dad said he would adopt her so she and our son would both have a dad and the same last name. Eight and one half months later my son and I were in a car accident only one block from our home.  The police offered to take me to the hospital, but I chose not to go as I felt her moving and had a doctor’s appointment the next morning. When my doctor examined me, there was no heart beat from my baby. Labor was induced and five hours later Alexandra was still born. The placenta was lodged in my left rib cage and I had emergency surgery, and given a couple units of blood. By this time, I was attending Calvary Chapel of Costa Mesa again and Pastor Carl led the funeral service. I have never gotten over this completely. The loss of a child is difficult to accept.

Angry at God, I again backslid, this time I did even stronger drugs and led a very promiscuous lifestyle. This led to me getting date raped three months after the loss of my daughter and again had an abortion, even though it was against my beliefs. I tried to justify it with the fact that I was raped.

Later that year I began dating a man and it lasted four years. In 1996, I again became pregnant and made the decision to abort. After the fact, I found out that my boyfriend would have married me and wanted the baby.

In 1997, I rededicated my life to the Lord and my son was saved the following weekend. God is so good. We were baptized together by Pastor Chuck Smith at Pirates Cove, San Clemente. Papa Chuck told me that this time I was going to serve my Lord. This is a day I will never forget as my son and I were baptized together at the same time. It was awesome! We went on a retreat shortly thereafter and were baptized in the Holy Spirit. Hallelujah!  I now began counseling new believers every Sunday and Monday evening at Calvary and annually at the Harvest Crusades in Anaheim. My son,  at eight years old hung out with the Christian artists that led worship on these occasions and became really close to most of them…Phil Keaggy, Crystal Lewis, The Kry, OC Supertones, Dennis Agajanian, Two or More, and DC Talk. Oft times he woulds hang out in our church’s cafe and play chess with those who were there at the time. It is my understanding that he never lost!, I met my second husband while counseling. Unbeknownst to me he and my son had been hanging out for six months while I was counseling. We were married exactly one year to the day from my son  and my baptisms. After only a year we were having problems; my husband was very controlling and I was a strong willed woman. February 2000 I had a nervous breakdown at work and was placed in a state mental facility for 2 weeks, I think. When I came home I began cutting myself by slashing my wrists. My spouse would not let me see any of my family or talk to them, and would tie me to my son’s bed with neckties while waiting for the police to arrive.  In July the same year we moved to Indiana and things just got worse. Sadly, my husband would not hold a job and was verbally and mentally abusing me to the point of my continued self-mutilating, and several attempts at suicide. I was placed in the mental unit at our hospital several times for bipolar personality and panic disorder. My doctor did not trust my husband and honored my wishes to keep him away from me while I was hospitalized. At this time, I was on 17 different medications and was hardly able to function. My now ex-husband would whisper in my ear that if I ever left him he would find and kill me. But God was still in control, and I met my best friend Sue Bee who is still my spiritual sister. She has had cancer in several parts of her body for 16 years and has a prayer ministry for others who have cancer.

We moved to North Salem IN in 2001 where I began a youth ministry, “Solid Rock.” The board gave us a generous budget for our kids. In 2003, I finally quit cutting myself and attempting suicide.

In 2004, my dad became sick with lung cancer while my mom was living in Memphis with her sister for close to eleven years. That summer when my son went to visit his dad in California, they stopped by to check on my dad and called to inform me of my dad’s illness. I called my mom who told me he was fine. Prior to this, I had two pulmonary embolisms, blood clots in my lungs, had carpal tunnel surgery and also had my ankle rebuilt after several sprains. That November, one week after my ankle surgery, my mom called and informed me that my dad was dying, my son  and I had a plane ticket waiting for us at Indianapolis International Airport leaving the next morning for Cali. A couple days later dad was sent home with a diagnosis of six months to live. Five days later he died, while my son, the only grandchild,  was headed back home to Indiana. After attending my dad’s funeral, I also flew home to Indiana.

I started attending Lakeview Christian Church in Indianapolis, an AG affiliate, His teaching second grade Sunday school and counseling teens. My husband  began having an affair with my coworker, and I took the opportunity to file for divorce. My son and his best friend came and moved me back to California in 2009. I rented a house behind a house from a lady over the phone, little did I know how important she would become to my life. We are still very close, and she now lives in Kentucky.

I found out in 2011 that I was the victim of identity theft and the culprit was my ex-husband. My cousin passed in 2011 with complications from colon cancer. Praise God that Sue Bee led him to the Lord.

In 2013 I was living with my mom when Irvine PD informed me that my ex-husband was in town. His name showed up because he received a traffic citation. My brother chose to believe rumors about me imposed by another family member, and on Christmas Eve my brother and sister in law kicked me out of my mother’s home. I moved back in with my son and his wife for a couple of months. They had just married that August. God gave me Psalm 42:8 for comfort:

The Lord will command His lovingkindness in the daytime,

And in the night His song shall be with me —

A prayer to the God of my life.

Needless to say, I moved to Missouri to start over. My son and I reconciled before I moved, and only he and my precious daughter in law (daughter) knew where I was. Safer that way. The rest, you all know, I met my soul mate  and we married 22 months ago. Last year I received a phone call from my mom and she and my brother and sister in law apologized with tears for what they did to me. God always has a way of making things right. It has taken me all of this time to truly forgive my ex husband, so freeing; I honestly feel that if I were to see him again, I would thank him as I have never been happier or closer to God. My son and his wife visited for four days last Christmas and my son told me, “Mom you left everything behind and God has blessed you tenfold.” No words have ever been truer from his precious mouth.

Needless to say, despite my efforts to be rebellious, God has always been there, placing amazing people in my path, including you all. In closing, PBPGINFWMY (Please be paitent, God is not finished with me yet.) Halleluyah!

Terms and Their Definitions….

Before we can embark upon our journey together we must first learn the meanings of words that ourselves, and society use. I have included the Webster’s dictionary definitions for many challenges we face in life. Please read them and contact me with your personal definitions, as they will definitely vary; I know mine do. God bless you and thank you for your participation.

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Abuse:                        To use wrongly 2. to mistreat, esp. by inflicting physical or sexual harm on 3. to insult; revile (n wrong use 2 mistreatment esp., by the infliction of physical or sexual harm 3 a corrupt practice 4. insulting language

Physical:                    Of nature, and all matter, material 2. Of or according to the laws of nature 3. Of, or produced by the forces of 4. Of the body as opposed to the mind

Verbal:                       Of, in or by means of words 2. In speech; oral 3. Of, like, or derived from a verb

Emotional:                 Of or showing emotion 2. Easily aroused to emotion 3. Appealing to the emotions; moving

Emotion:                    strong feeling 2. Any specific feeling, as to love, hate, fear, anger

Mental:                       Of, for, by, or in the mind 2. Of, having, or related to mental illness 3. For the mentally ill

Anxiety:                      Worry or uneasiness about what may happen 2. An eager but uneasy desire (anxiety to do well)

Panic:                         (as inspirer of sudden fear) a sudden, unreasoning fear, often spreading quickly

Broken:                      Splintering, fractured 2. not in working order 3. violated (a broken promise) 4. ruined 5. interrupted; discontinued 6. imperfectly spoken, 7. tamed

Bipolar:                      Of or involving poles or polarity 2. having alternating periods of mania and mental depression

Mania:                        A (specified) type of mental disorder 2. an intense enthusiasm for

Disorder:                    A lack of order, confusion 2. breach of public peace, riot 3. an ailment 4. to disrupt the normal function of

Self-Mutilation:

Self:                            The identity, character, etc. of any person or thing w. one’s own person as distinct from all others 3. One’s own welfare or interest

Mutilate:                     To cut off, damage or mar an important part of

Anorexia:                   An eating disorder characterized by obsession with weight loss

Bulimia:                     A continuous, abnormal hunger 2.A disorder characterized by eating large quantities of food followed by self-induced vomiting

Depression:              Depressing or being depressed 2. A hollow or low place 3. Low spirits, dejection 4. A condition marked by hopelessness, self-doubt, lethargy 5. A decrease in force, activity 6. A period of reduced business, much unemployment

Borderline:                 On a boundary 2. indefinite

Schizophrenia:         A mental disorder characterized by separation between thought and emotions, by delusions, bizarre behavior

 

Obsessive Compulsive Disorder (OCD):

Obsess:                     to haunt or trouble in mind; preoccupy (to be obsessed or preoccupied.             Obsession     2. An idea, desire, etc. that obsesses one

Compulsion:             A compelling or being compelled 2. A driving force 3. An irresistible impulse to perform some act

Phobia(s):                  An irrational, excessive, and persistent fear of some thing or situation

(Webster’s New World Dictionary & Thesaurus, 2013)

 

Do You or a Loved One Suffer From…

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Do you, a loved one, or a friend suffer from a broken home, phobias, anorexia or bulimia, bipolar personality, depression, obsessive compulsive disorder (ocd), borderline personality, schizophrenia, anxiety, panic attacks, abuse-physical, emotional, mental and verbal? This website is dedicated to you. I too have suffered from many of these. In the weeks to follow I will be sharing my story with you in hopes of physical, emotional and spiritual healing. May God bless you as we embark upon this journey of healing together.