I'M A CHRISTIAN...NOW WHAT?
Chapter 8: Healing From Trauma...God's Full Armor Of Protection...Spiritual Warfarfare Continues
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Hello, my name is Mark Diaz. Welcome to chapter 8 of the book ‘I’m A Christian…Now What?” In this chapter we continue to expose the enemy’s tactics regarding Spiritual warfare. We will examine the tactics he’s used over the ages. By knowing his predictable tactics we are able to be proactive against him…using God’s full armor of protection.
This work is copyrighted and not to be used for any commercial purpose but please share it freely with your friends. All Scriptures are from the New King James Bible unless otherwise noted.
Chapter 8: Healing From Trauma…God’s Full Armor Of Protection…Spiritual Warfare Continues
Coming up in this chapter we have a CLASSIC example of how the enemy works regarding the corruption of the church: We know the enemy’s days are numbered. Satan and the angels that fell away with him are not eligible for God’s Salvation (Matthew 25:41). Satan is working overtime in the battlefield of the human mind…he is pulling out all the stops. He has had thousands of years to corrupt every human institution. Please prayerfully study the Scriptural References in all the previous chapters.
There is something that is called the ‘Lazy Christian Syndrome’ in this book because that is what it is…theses are people who are too lazy to get to know God so they ‘hire’ others to do it for them.
Let’s examine a Scriptural case where a man named Simon (not Simon Peter the Apostle) was traveling with Philip and later John and others. This man Simon had been a magician prior to seeing God’s Miracles. At one point Simon asks to buy God’s Power in Acts 8:17 it begins; “Then they laid hands on them, and they received the Holy Spirit. (18) And when Simon saw that through the laying on of the apostles’ hands the Holy Spirit was given, he offered them money, (19) saying, “Give me this power also that anyone on whom I lay hands may receive the Holy Spirit.” (20) But Peter said to him, “Your money perish with you, because you thought the gift of God could be purchased with money!
God is not for sale! He already owns everything
There is another very dynamic and dramatic example that makes the point God’s Miracles and Blessings are not for sale. It is the account of when Jesus entered the Temple and was outraged by what was going on there. The account is recorded in the Gospels of John, Mark and Matthew.
Please study all three of the different Gospel Accounts for yourself…it really hits the point home regarding Christ’s hatred for the corruption of God’s Temple…Christ’s Church…His Bride. The accounts are in (John 2:13-17, Mark 11:15, Matthew 21:12).
In John 2:13-23 John writes: “(13) “Now the Passover of the Jews was at hand, (14) And He found in the temple those who sold oxen and sheep and doves, and the money changers’ doing business. (15) When He had made a whip of cords, He drove them all out of the temple, with the sheep and the oxen, and poured out the changers’ money and overturned the tables (16) And He said to those who sold doves, “Take these things away! Do not make my Father’s house a house of merchandise!”
(17) Then His disciples remembered that it was written “Zeal for Your house has eaten Me up” (Psalm 69:9).
Among many other points, He made the point quite clearly that One cannot BUY personal prayer or pay others to commune with God for us…we cannot ‘buy and sell God’s Blessings.
Just IMAGINE Jesus as He was righteously raging through God’s House occupied by, as He said a den of THIEVES!!! He had made a whip and He was in a righteous rage!
Jesus was chasing everyone and their oxen and sheep out of the Temple!
They were selling SACRIFICES…DOVES as required to be sacrificed under the Old Mosaic Covenant…and making CHANGE for these sacrifices…in other words, SELLING GOD’S BLESSINGS!!!...or trying to.
Then HE started throwing their wares around and ‘poured out’ the ‘changer’s money’! And then began overturning the money changer’s tables!!! Can you imagine!? This was the only instance in the Scriptures that Jesus became angry!
I imagine the corruption of the Temple as something that resembles a flee market…but with the very finest decor…can you imagine going into a casino in Vegas and start ‘pouring out’ the ‘money changers’ money??? Or actually overturning the ‘money changer’s’ tables? I mean money has been guarded by men with life and limb since it was invented by man…yet here Jesus is in a righteous rant…cutting Himself through the crowd like a hot knife through butter whipping everyone in His path!
Those people MUST have been in SHOCK!
He knew that He was at the end of His Ministry here on earth. He was making a point to all of those most guilty of Corrupting God’s House of Worship…He was really, really ticked off!!! Then in the account written in Matthew 21:14 we learn that after the dust had settled the blind and the lame came to Him at the temple and He healed them…the temple, literally…for that short time was back in the Hands of God.
We cannot depend on others doing our homework for us. God requires us to have a personal relationship with Him. The ONLY way to develop that relationship is through personal prayer and study. Galatians 6:4 says: “Let each one examine HIS OWN work, and then he will have rejoicing in himself alone, and not in another”. In order to have the personal satisfaction of knowing God we have to earn it, individually…by investing the time…personal time… in prayer and study in order to get to know Him…just as it is an investment required in ANY relationship…time…lots and lots of time.
2 Corinthians 13:5 says: “Examine yourselves as to whether you are in the faith…” In other words we have a personal responsibility to God and to ourselves to get to know Him through personal prayer and study. Everything we need to know is in the Scriptures…all we have to do is ask for His Wisdom and He will give it liberally…without reproach…He will never make us feel stupid for asking questions…we are admonished to pray for His Wisdom in ALL things…the only dumb question is the one we DON’T ask…please prayerfully study the previous chapters of this book for Scriptural references.
We refer to something we call the ‘lazy Christian Syndrome’ in this book.
The result of this Lazy Christian Syndrome is illustrated in an example of a brother’s account of what happened to him at work: I grew up knowing this brother’s family in Arizona and know for a fact that he is a man of character.
His account is so typical of how the enemy has corrupted many of the churches…how some church membership is looking to Priests and Pastors for their Salvation and Blessings rather than looking to God and developing a personal relationship with Him…through Christ…in order to understand His Will for them as individuals.
The process of Spiritual Maturity is a life-long process…a Journey with God that is always growing (or should be). Be patient with yourself…God is. Stay in the race
The following account is one that I have heard dozens of times over the years…the people involved change but the enemy’s tactics remain the same. The subject is usually about either sex or money but can be anything regarding morals, ethics or values…it is a common example of Spiritual Warfare in our modern lives.
Please bear in mind that a HUGE part of my ministry is simply watching God do His Work and then reporting on it. I LOVE my job!!! I get to see some TRULY AMAZING things that God does EVERYDAY!!! Thank YOU FATHER!!!
Over the decades I have seen very CERTAIN patterns emerge regarding the enemy’s tactics. His tactics have not changed in thousands of years. By teaching other Christians about the enemy’s tactics it makes us all ‘vigilant’ (Colossians 3:25, 1 Peter 5:8) situational awareness…proactive against the enemy. The following account addresses just one of the many patterns that the enemy follows…in his folly against our Father.
If you have had similar situations occur in your life or in the life of someone you know…don’t be surprised…let this simple account serve as confirmation that this occurs, perhaps millions of times per day…around the world…there are currently about 7 billion people on planet earth and the enemy is very active.
1 Peter:3:15 teaches us: “…sanctify the Lord God in your hearts, and always be ready to give a defense to everyone who asks you for a reason for the hope that is in you, with meekness and fear (respect toward God).
Three male employees of an air conditioning business in Arizona were talking one day during a break. The subject of sex came up. All three men claim Christianity as their faith. The young brother, Allen Brown, who I have known for many years, was shocked by what was coming out of his ‘Christian’ brother’s mouths. They were saying things about the opposite sex that was obviously not pleasing to Father God.
Allen, who is obviously NOT a lazy Christian, had read for himself what God’s views are regarding sexual immorality. His view of sex is God’s view. It is reserved as a Blessing, a Gift from God designed for a husband and wife. Something sacred…souls are touching and a new human life is being created.
Because of the context of the other brother’s views on promiscuity, fornication and adultery, Allen, who had been married for 6 years at the time, was shocked that these supposedly mature, Christian men were condoning the world’s view (satan’s view) of sex. In other words they thought it would be ‘cool’ to sleep with a certain Holly Wood celebrity…have sex with her and other celebrities and to do so with impunity toward the Holy Spirit.
These other two men might be mature in years and mature in the world but they were undermining the sanctity of marriage in general and embarrassing themselves before God…they were lusting over women who they were not married to and indeed purposely trying to stumble this young brother who truly IS a Christian with Christian morals, ethics and values.
Imagine that folks…the enemy slithered into their minds and they chose to listen to his suggestions…they used their precious God given minds and mouths to spew very disgusting, graphic depictions of what they would do sexually with these celebrities if given the opportunity…I wonder what their wives would have thought given privy to their views. No doubt Father was grieved…their tongues must have saddened Him greatly.
At one point the faithful young Christian brother had had enough. In the spirit of love he spoke up and quoted a Scripture; Matthew 5:28…and this is red letter counsel from Jesus Himself folks…it says “But I say to you that whoever looks to a woman to lust after her has already committed adultery in his heart”. Where a man allows his mind to wander, he will follow.
The other two men started taunting Allen, making comments about him as a man. They asked him what he does when he sees a woman who is provocatively dressed…he said:
“I look away out of respect for God, my wife, myself and the woman who dressed herself that way…she is someone’s daughter, sister, girlfriend, wife or mom”.
The other two ‘Christian’ men started making fun of him and to argue with the young brother…he soon realized that they were not arguing with HIM…they were arguing with God Himself! They began laughing and taunting him even more!
Then Allen said something to the effect that he didn’t write the Bible GOD did. At that point one of the so called Christian men angrily through out: “I’ve been a Christian ALL MY LIFE!!! How long have YOU been a Christian!?”
The young brother had been studying a few years…can we see how, so far, the false teacher was trying to demean the younger brother? This wasn’t coming from God folks.
He stuck to God’s Guns and said something to the effect that his Authority was God and His Word…the ONLY Authority that he recognizes!!!
When the enemy saw that he wasn’t getting anywhere in trying to stumble this faithful young Son of God’s he spoke through one of the men who said: “Well the Bible was written by men and has been corrupted through various translations”.
Imagine that…you can’t trust God’s Word! We KNOW this was not coming from God. In an effort to justify his own immoral thoughts and conduct he was willing to listen to the enemy and IMPUTE God’s Word!
He would rather re-write God’s Word to conform to HIS bad behavior…rather than conform his mind, heart and soul (his way of living) to what pleases GOD!!!
He wants God to conform to HIS way of thinking! Sure…why not…let’s just re-write the Bible…it would be laughable except it is so true and tragic in this modern Sodom and Gomorrah.
Undeterred, this young brother allowed God to speak through him…he didn’t know exactly where the Scripture was but he KNEW it was in the Bible…he quoted 2Timothy 3:16 “All Scripture is given by inspiration of God, and is profitable for doctrine, for reproof, for correction, for instruction in righteousness”.
How could a Christian deny the Word of God! Who IS their authority? Confucius? Chinese fortune cookies? Dear Abby? The Family Guy? Saturday Night Live? The nightly NEWS!? The daily horoscope?!
Their Authority certainly isn’t God folks…and there are only two powers…God and satan and if it isn’t coming from God it is coming from the enemy…does anyone argue that pop culture and most of the media is OWNED by the enemy?
At one point this young brother realized the enemy’s tactics… (what these two men were trying to do…and their minds being used by the enemy to do it!) and he listened to God…he walked away…Matthew 7:1 tells us that “if we cast a pearl to a swine the swine will resent it as if we threw a rock at him…reproofs will be called reproaches”.
God’s Pearls of truth are precious and not to be wasted on the enemy…Allen’s conscious is clear regarding trying to teach to them God’s Truth…they chose to argue with God…their free will at work.
Perhaps as God sends other Intercessors in the future they might have receptive minds and hearts.
This young brother neither allowed himself to be stumbled or falsely taught because of his dedication to God and His Wisdom…he dusted his feet off so as not to take their filth with him…as a testimony against them (Mark 6:11, Luke 9:5).
As he walked away they actually followed him trying to hammer and verbally shake his faith…to no avail. Can you imagine them just prattling away behind him, following and badgering him as he quietly walked away…so as not to be distracted, angered or loose his joy because of the enemy that was inside the minds of these men.
This is such a common tactic used by the enemy…to follow someone who is doing the right thing. Jesus Himself said “Get behind me satan” when the enemy was trying to tempt Him: Luke 4:8; And Jesus answered him “Get behind me satan! For it is written ‘You shall worship the LORD your God, and Him only you shall serve.”
I have heard this same scenario countless times over the decades…the enemy is so predictable in his tactics as to become boring. He has had thousands of years to display his patterns and tactics. A HUGE part of this ministry is to expose his tactics so that Christians can recognize them and proactively, through Christ, neutralize the enemy’s influence in our lives.
The good news is that this young brother represents the epitome of God working in us and through us. Allen didn’t know exactly Chapter and verse where all the Scriptures were…but he new they WERE there and he remained faithful to God’s Word and was led by Him.
It is interesting that Jesus seldom quoted Scripture either He would say something like “It is written”. What is important is that this young brother prayed for God’s Wisdom whether consciously or subconsciously (out of habit…faith tool chapter One of this book) and God was there inside of his mind, heart and soul and He strengthened him.
We have had some very good questions regarding the previous chapters of this book.
We received an email from Jasmine in Jakarta…she writes “Mark what is the difference between the ‘mind’ and the brain? Aren’t they the same”?
Others have asked the same question and it is a GREAT question!
The answer is that there is a difference between the mind and the brain, although the brain and the mind work together and need each other. The word ‘mind’ is the word used in Scriptural References in the previous Chapters of this book…and all throughout the Scriptures. In the New King James Bible the word ‘mind’ occurs141 times in 123 articles…please prayerfully read all preceding chapters of this guide book and all of the Scriptures for yourself for deepest understanding.
Think of the brain as being like the ‘hardware’ in a computer system…the Central Processing Unit and the ‘mind’ is the software that controls the brain…it is in the mind that choices are made…free will. Animals operate off of ‘instinct’…pre-programmed instructions…they have the ability to learn but they do not have free will…an animal is governed by pre-programmed instructions.
At conception the human soul is created with a blank slate, the brain is but mere molecules in size. As it grows and develops it is ‘imprinted’, programmed, with information from its environment. The mind is formed during this process. Our sensory inputs; seeing, smelling, hearing, taste, touch all contribute to our learning.
Studies show that a baby in the womb is influenced by such things as what music the mother listens to…calming music will calm the child…music that is ‘agitating’ will agitate the child. Expand that to ANYTHING that is in the mother’s and baby’s environment and you will get a clearer picture…the mother’s environment affects the child because the child’s mind is being formed as the brain is growing…and the mind is programming its brain…from conception.
The medical experts tell us that every memory is imprinted and stored somewhere in our brain…those memories are accessed through ‘triggers’ that remind us of certain experiences or anything that is stored such as knowledge and any and every memory that the human has experienced…these things are all processed with the ‘software’ that is the human mind…again, the mind is where we make decisions…such as free will decisions…choices.
The interesting thing about the human mind is that we can, at will, re-program it by consciously choosing to replace bad habits with good habits…bad information with good information.
We can replace bad or destructive behavior with growthful behavior. In Romans 12:2 for example Paul writes: “And do not be conformed to this world (satan), but be transformed by the renewing of your mind, that you may prove what is that good and acceptable and perfect (mature) will of God”. And in Ephesians 4:23 Paul says basically the same thing and talks about putting on the ‘new man’ or new personality that matures after becoming a Christian…and that it is in God’s Will that we do so…that we renew or make new our minds.
There are 141 occurrences in 123 articles in the New King James Version of the Bible using the word ‘mind’…many of these Scriptures have been sited in previous chapters of this book…but here is one we just can’t resist mentioning here and it will be expounded upon later in chapters regarding Christian conduct:
In First Thessalonians 4:9 Paul, Sylvanus and Timothy are together and Paul writes to the church in Thessalonica regarding Christian conduct, especially in regards to one another. He starts out in verse 9 talking about brotherly love, then in verse 11 he says simply; “to mind your own business”…it all begins in the mind folks, everything that a human does…including malicious gossip…where the mind wanders the man will follow…just refer to Cain…God told him to not even think those murderous thoughts…he would be exalted if he turned his mind from such thoughts.
Studies show it takes about 30 days to replace a bad habit with a good habit because we are actually ‘retraining’ the brain using our reprogrammed (renewed) mind…the software that controls the brain…if the software is retrained then the brain will automatically respond accordingly. That is why we often say that the mind is the boss of the brain and the brain is the boss of the body…where the mind wanders, the man will follow (please refer to all the preceding chapters of this book for the Scriptural references and a deeper understanding).
The brain is where all of the bio-mechanical orders are processed for the body to function…but it is in the mind that decisions are made…free will.
In the previous chapter, chapter 7, we studied the basics of Spiritual warfare. We gave an example of Michael Lee Washington in Great Falls Montana…his Testimony on how God healed Mike in the most dynamic way of the most profound maladies.
In this chapter we will continue with the theme of healing and God’s Blessings and Miracles in our lives…and how Spiritual Warfare is an important part of this process.
Please study chapters 5 and 6 and all the Scriptural references for a deeper understanding of healing and miracles…evoking God’s Miracles and Blessings is all part of Spiritual Warfare…neutralizing the enemy in our lives. The best defense against the enemy is a strong offense using God’s Power in our lives.
There is a very simple and effective prayer tool that we ALWAYS encourage Christians to use…and it ALWAYS works; whenever you are feeling down turn to God. Remember satan is the one from whom all negative thoughts come. He places those thoughts trying to distract us from God’s Thoughts (again…please prayerfully study all preceding chapters and the Scriptural references for the deepest understanding).
The Prayer Exercise is to find a quiet place with no distractions. Then just say a simple, heartfelt, prayer giving yourself over to Father God…through Christ with the Holy Spirit inside your mind, heart and soul…and ask for His Inspiration…His advice…in other words, His Will…as the Scripture says…pray for His Wisdom..He will give it liberally and without reproach…He won’t make us feel stupid for asking…the only dumb question is the one we FAILED to ask Him…we are to ask for His Guidance in ALL matters.
Prayer Exercise: Find a quiet place with no distractions, take your Bible and randomly open it and thumb through it KNOWING that God will guide the pages. He will take you EXACTLY where you need to be. He will give you that miracle as confirmation that He is there with you. The simplicity that is in Christ.
We have taken this simple prayer exercise and expanded it to the most profound and dynamic situations; God has inspired a healing exercise that we will examine in this Chapter:
PRAYER TOOL FOR TRAUMA SURVIVORS
The idea of this Prayer Exercise is for the person to ‘re-live’ the experiences in a safe environment while in prayer...while communing with God (meditating, focusing on Him as a person…the Ultimate, Loving, Wise Parent). So that when any of the ‘triggers’ are experienced in daily life that would normally cause traumatic thoughts...instead they trigger God's Healing powers.
In this way the ‘triggers’ or ‘reminders’ take us back to prayer and meditation And God’s Healing Powers instead of to the traumatic event...in a very real sense they take us to God instead of taking us to the perpetrator…the enemy.
Also it is important to stress that this exercise works with ALL trauma…from relatively mild trauma such as what we experience in an auto accident to the deepest and most profound, protracted, trauma such as what happens to men in battle, kidnap victims, rape and torture victims…the principals are the same. Trauma is trauma…it varies with intensity and duration of the event and frequency of the trauma…sometimes the trauma occurs repeatedly over years such as in cases of childhood abuse…but the Great Healer is willing and able to heal in ALL circumstances (Matt. 8:1, Matt.14:13, Mark 6:30, Acts 3:12, and 185 other occurrences in the Bible…please refer to chapter 5 of this book for deeper understanding).
Before I describe the Prayer Exercise we need to understand the principles behind it in order to understand why it works:
We humans learn from experience. During any experience we are constantly taking in 'sensory input' from all of our senses...those being; hearing, smelling, tasting, seeing and touching. During every one of our millions of experiences in a lifetime we are constantly taking in information from our environment and storing that data in our brains and cross-referencing these things for future use.
For a lack of a better term we use the term Psychologists use...these sensory signals are called 'triggers' or ‘reminders’ because just as a computer link will execute a set of predetermined instructions to the 'brain' of the computer for execution of the instructions, so will these ‘triggers’ (reminders) set off memories in the mind.
This occurs whether they are pleasant memories or horrific memories…and the mind will then dictate to the brain a certain set of behavioral responses such as anxiety, fear, anger and so forth. If it is a pleasant memory then, of course, the response might be joy, happiness, laughter etc.
The triggers (reminders) and/or a combination of triggers (reminders) are endless and can be anything that comes from any of our senses. The memory of a pleasant day at the beach can be triggered by the smell of a certain brand of beach lotion. The color of a towel...the sound of a certain song...a tone of voice...on and on and on. Likewise the triggers that set off traumatic memories are equally varied and complex…and normally the ‘triggers’ ‘remind’ us of the perpetrator and the negative experience that resulted from the trauma.
The best part of this exercise is that no other person is needed for it to be successful. It is something that can be done strictly between the person and God alone…through Christ with the Holy Spirit inside your mind, heart and soul.
Find a quiet place...no phone, no interruptions. Take a Bible and say a simple prayer to God, through Christ…giving yourself over completely to Him just as we do in the basic prayer exercise noted above. It is fine to have other Christians around you that you trust but it is not required. Take your Bible as you say your prayer giving your complete trust over to God...then randomly open your Bible knowing He will guide you...He will give you this miracle as confirmation that He is with you…read what you are led to read.
The next step…and this is important…is to then write down the traumatic experience(s), in detail, while in a Prayerful Conversation with God. Writing is important because it exercises our senses and writing helps 'imprint' the exercise into the mind, in prayer while communing with God the Great Healer...and to take it a step further, we should 'vocalize' what we are writing...we should read the words regarding the experience during and after writing them down...vocalizing further imprints the experience into our mind and brain and ties it to our Prayer Experience (and God) rather than to the traumatic event (and the perpetrator). The triggers from the trauma(s) then, eventually, become ‘healing triggers’ rather than ‘traumatic triggers’.
Wherever possible recreate all possible sensory inputs such as sight, smell, sound, taste and touch…anything that is reasonable…any sensory triggers that were present at the time of the trauma. For in doing so, these triggers will direct your memories to the Great Healer instead of to the perpetrator...healing instead of pain...God instead of the enemy.
The words you write and speak regarding your memory of the events surrounding the trauma do not have to be eloquent or even spelled properly...the sentences don't have to be complete...God already knows the details, the fact that we are turning to God makes Him smile in our time of need…it is a demonstration of our love, faith and trust in Him…His Blessings WILL follow.
You will see results even after the first session with Father God…but remember; you are growing a garden that needs to be tended…constantly.
Even after you feel like you have completely been healed, this practice will keep the garden tended.
It has worked with many men and women to whom I have ministered...the ones who are most diligent are the ones most often healed long term...and by tending their garden with God on a daily basis their Spiritual progress has been most impressive. We are all works in progress...be patient with yourself...God is…Diligent thought and obedience to God, guarding the mind and following through with action is called, in Scripture, ‘Walking in the Spirit’ (Galatians 5:10, 5:16, Romans 8:1-17) …please refer to all previous chapters for a full understanding of these words.
Remember every detail of every event that you can. The most important events will come to mind first.
There are elements of faith that are expected by God in order to evoke His Blessings and Miracles (Study Chapter 5 for a deep, Scriptural understanding of ‘God’s Recipe For Miracles”, also Chapter 6 ‘Why Won’t God Heal Me?’).
Here are some testimonials that we have received over the last couple of years or so regarding the prayer exercises and the faith tool that we suggested earlier in this book:
This first one is from a sister in New Mexico, Rosa Velasquez:
She writes: “Dear Mark: I don’t know if you remember me but we had regular Christian Counseling sessions on (website name deleted). I used both the ‘faith tool’ and the prayer exercises that you suggested. THANK YOU GOD!!! And thank you Brother Mark for the work that you do”! (The faith tool referred to is found in Chapter One.)
“My trauma was not as severe as many people suffer but I would have bouts of anxiety and depression. I was taking rather heavy doses of daily medications that were adversely affecting my liver and stomach. You advised me to not go off any medications without consulting my physician. You advised that abruptly stopping any medication could be dangerous and cause ‘back-lash’ effects.
I am blessed to have a Physician who is a full Gospel, non-denominational, Christian man. He is also on our prayer team at church. He agreed whole-hardheartedly with your approach”. (Note: This is not my approach by the way…its God’s approach but we know what sister Velasquez means).
Sister Velasquez continues: “During my car accident one of my children was eating a chili dog in the back of the van that my husband was driving. I was in the front passenger seat. A song by Casting Crowns was playing in the CD player. I had just given my husband some men’s cologne and he was wearing it, also I was eating a chocolate bar when we were going through a green light and a man ‘T-boned’ us, he had ran the red light going 90 plus miles an hour and hit on my side of the vehicle.
Our van was completely totaled and unrecognizable, the spinning action (a full 360 degrees) caused something called ‘brain shear’…the synapse in my brain became misaligned and it caused temporary memory problems and other symptoms. By God’s Grace that is all that happened…no one else was injured physically, not even the driver of the truck who hit us. Praise to God!
The physical injuries cleared up within a few months but I suffered from nightmares, restlessness, a constant feeling of ‘dread’…as if something terrible would happen at any moment. I began taking medication for anxiety and for sleep.
In addition; the ‘triggers’ you told me about during Counseling were all too true. I could no longer smell a chili dog, that particular cologne, eat a chocolate bar or listen to that particular song without going into a ‘panic attack’, also whenever I would hear an emergency siren I would nearly go through the ceiling!
I took your advice and used the PTSD prayer tool. I recreated all the ‘triggers’, the chocolate bar, cologne, chili dog and the music…slowly, one day at a time. Sometimes the prayer team from church was with me, sometimes it was just me and God, but bless you Brother Mark for this suggestion. (Note; again its God’s idea, not mine).
After a few weeks of using this exercise and under my Physician’s care I was completely weaned off of the medication and ALL symptoms had disappeared. Originally my Doctor had told me that I could be on the medication for the rest of my life because the meds just ‘mask’ the symptoms. God healed me; there is NO doubt about that!
My Physician is recommending this Prayer Exercise to patients, when appropriate, and our church has adopted it as regular fare for healing” quietly, in small groups.
I replied: “Dear sister Rosa…Of course I remember you! In fact it was during one of our prayer sessions, on the phone, early on in the Prayer Ministry that God inspired the Prayer Exercise we are talking about now!
I remember being hit by the Holy Spirit so hard that I could barely speak! The inspiration was so obvious it was almost BLINDING”!
Side note: When I say ‘hit’ by the Holy Spirit, folks, I don’t mean punched…I mean the presence inside us both was so strong and it hit so suddenly that I almost dropped the phone and all my senses focused so strongly at that moment that there was an almost blinding flash that occurred inside of my mind…talk about a ‘light bulb going off’ in my head…this one was like a ‘million candle power’ light bulb.
There have been many other, very dynamic and dramatic instances where this PTSD (Post Traumatic Stress Disorder) Prayer Exercise worked on men, and women, who were traumatized in very profound ways over a protracted period of time:
This is an account of a young sister, young to me, she was age 40 when we met in a Christian chat room, and she was seeking Christian Counseling for PTSD.
At age 12 Jeanine ran away from home. She was kidnapped and held prisoner for three months by a motorcycle gang. The abuse and torture this young child endured is unimaginable and unspeakable. Jeanine came to Christ about 3 years ago as of this writing in August of 2009. The trauma affected her even after coming to Christ.
She is married to a fine Christian man and they have 2 young children but when we first started Christian Counseling she felt a wall between herself and her husband. Also a wall between herself and her children...even a wall between herself and God. She knew this was a wall that she had placed because she was afraid to love. She had a rage that would pour out onto her husband, her children...even onto Father God.
She writes: “Dear brother Mark; God is truly the ultimate loving Parent! I am now 42 years old. I carried the effects of my kidnapping for decades. I had been in therapy and taking medication for all those years. The medication only masked the symptoms. The trauma was still there and would build up until I exploded! The problems would manifest themselves in other ways even with the medication, I became compulsive and obsessive, I thought that in order to be loved I had to be perfect.
I developed habits of counting; I would count practically everything, when making spaghetti I would count the individual noodles from the package before I would put them in the pot to boil. There had to be an exact, certain number before I could bring myself to make dinner. I would keep my mind occupied on the most trivial things in order to avoid thinking about the memories of things that had happened in my childhood, when I was kidnapped.
When I came to Christ, thanks to my dear husband, I knew that God is the Great Healer but I didn’t know how to tap into His Power. We came across a ‘faith healer’ who told us if we gave him five thousand dollars he would guarantee that I would be cured. Of course, as you say, this was rubbish, God is not for sale and neither Jesus nor any of our examples of people God used for healing ever charged money for the work they do for God.
Supporting a Ministry is a blessing, but to be charged a set rate and have it appear to be on a menu of some kind is shameful. For money to be required at all goes against everything the Gifts of the Holy Spirit stands for.
Thankfully my husband knew better than to try and ‘buy’ God’s blessings and miracles but it seemed to me that if God really loves me then he would heal me.
Then one night my husband came across you in a Christian chat room and you were teaching the ‘simplicity that is in Christ’. The two of you prayed together and others joined in. Frank was absolutely GLOWING after that prayer session.
He was filled with the Holy Spirit and could barely speak. I could feel the energy coming from him; I could see God in his eyes. Frank and I prayed together and we have never felt so close to each other and to God. We realized that for our marriage to be everything it should be, everything God had planned for it to be, we had to make Him the center of our lives.
Mark, I know that you are just a guy who loves God and people as you say, but Frank and I thank God that you are doing His work, and that we came across such an anointed ministry. (I thank God constantly for His Will and being willing to share His Wisdom…all we have to do is ask, pray and study as you say so often).
We prayed for and found a Full Gospel, non-denominational Christian church, a ‘healthy church’ as you say. We used the PTSD Prayer tool that you suggested and in just the last few months, under my Doctor’s direction, I have been able to slowly drop ALL of my medication! (Thank You Father).
ALL of my symptoms have gone away. It is as if all those years of lost growth have been restored. You told us about the ‘arrested development’ that often happens in severe cases of trauma. You were right! In so many ways I had stopped maturing emotionally after I was kidnapped at age 12. During my ‘episodes’ I would act like a raging 12 year old. All of the hate and anger that I felt for my abductors would come spewing out of my mouth! I would say the most vial things to my husband, even to God.
They were not the source of my pain but I knew that both Frank and God would forgive me so I became a perpetrator and they were my victims.
When I pray for God’s Inspiration and ask His advice I have come to realize that everyone that I have ever known has had God’s Miracles in their lives…perhaps many Miracles…and never took time to realize it…never even stopped to thank God for His Miracles…because they didn’t even notice…because the enemy distracted them…through a storm at them like he did the Apostle Peter…just as you have pointed out Scripturally. Bless you Mark. Thank you so much Father God, you ARE the GREAT HEALER!
Her family and I had exchanged phone numbers and I called back after receiving her email.
Spiritual warfare…the battlefield that is the human mind…by knowing the enemy’s tactics we know how to be proactive and put on God’s Full Armor of Protection.
Paul, writing to the Ephesians, said: “Finally my brethren, be strong in the Lord and in the power of His might. Put on the whole armor of God that you might be able to stand against the wiles of the devil. For we do not wrestle against flesh and blood, but against principalities, against powers, against the rulers of darkness of this age, against spiritual hosts of wickedness...(Ephesians 6:10-12) See also Romans 8:38, 2nd Corinthians 10:4, Isaiah 11:5, Luke 12:35).
In 1st Peter 1:13 it says: Therefore gird up the loins of your mind, be sober, and rest hope fully upon the grace that is to be brought to you at the revelation of Jesus Christ”. It says the ‘loins of your mind”…the loins are often referred to as that which causes procreation…life…it all begins in the mind fellow Christians… everyday Spiritual Warfare.
It is also in the human mind where the everyday battles are fought and won…where the mind wanders…the man will follow…it is up to us to train our minds according to God’s Wisdom…not the world’s wisdom…not the enemy’s wisdom…life…eternal life with God and His blessings and miracles all begin in the mind according to what we feed it…garbage in, garbage out…as it has from the beginning…just refer to Adam and Eve.
This is a poem God Blessed me to write…hopefully you will find it inspirational. He gave me these words at a time of difficulty…a time that my faith (my mind) needed maturing:
GOD’S MARATHON FOR US TO RUN
1st Corinthians 9:24)
Challenging is the work of God
A runner suffers pain
Training and discipline
In sunshine and in rain
Faith muscles rip to grow again
They grow back stronger more
The eyes on the prize we keep
For Him we do adore
Our race is to obedience
The enemy to defeat
How dare that silly Lucifer
Think he can compete
Against the true Creator
When God’s work was deemed good
That silly little bitty snake
In God’s defiance stood
And said I’ll steal your power
Your glory and your will
I’ll prove to you all men will follow
Your creation I will steal
Free will God gave us all
Even Lucifer the snake
One third of the Host he stole
Our beds we all do make
And so our God to make His point
And sort out those with faith
Gave that silly god of demons
His time to make mistakes
That dirty little viper
Now crawls among the weeds
And tries to bite those mighty runners
Who plant God’s mighty seeds
A time will come as Satan bites
The runners’ heals will bruise
Satan’s head, God will crush
God’s marathon he’ll loose
COPYRIGHT 2009 MARK DIAZ ALL RIGHTS RESERVED
NOT TO BE USED FOR ANY COMMERCIAL PURPOSE BUT PLEASE SHARE
FREELY WITH YOUR FRIENDS
Well…that concludes chapter 8 of the book, “I’m A Christian…Now What?”
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Until next time God Bless you and remember to hate what God hates and love what He loves…hate the sin but love the sinner.