In 2004, my life changed. Within six months, we moved out of state, started another company, I got sober, we became Christ followers, became pregnant with #2, lost everything, felt the calling from God to go into ministry, hubby landed a dream job, had baby #2, hubby left dream job, began our calling in ministry, and we all lived happily ever after. Okay, maybe not. The truth is, what’s been real in our lives has been more like demonic oppression than “happily ever after.” Sound dramatic, scary, or just plain weird? Maybe it’s all those things. But I’ve come to believe that even though influence and interference from the unseen world may be real, it doesn’t have to be scary. And we’re not powerless!
Okay, back to the not-so-happily ever after. For us, it’s looked like this. The day my husband and I prayed together about our call to ministry, I got a migraine. It lasted three years. Literally. We’ve been in ministry for over 12 years, and in those last 12 years I’ve experienced illness, surgeries, miscarriage, tumors, testing, and more. These past five years I struggle more to get out of bed each day. My body hurts so badly that I’m unable to exercise, cook, or play with my children. I must be careful not to overdo it. There have been times when I’ve prayed for healing and received it. But it’s been a battle. It’s a daily battle for me not to let the enemy into my mind, making me feel powerless or hopeless.
I realize this may be strange to read about. But, I do believe we have a spiritual enemy. I believe the Bible, so I also have to believe our enemy has minions called demons who seek to carry out the will of the enemy. But what do they do? They can inflict suffering. They scheme to lure you away from God. They will tempt you to sin, and they want to keep you from God’s will.
I say all of this not to scare or discourage you. Quite the opposite! Yes, demonic oppression happens, but God is so much stronger. Let God ground you in love, not fear. With His help, you can persevere and overcome every pain, lure, temptation, and stop sign our enemy may throw your way. The Bible says we can put on a spiritual kind of armor that helps us fight and resist the attacks our enemy hits us with. Read about God’s armor here in Ephesians 6:10-20. Notice how His armor isn’t about what you can do—but rather about leaning on Him for strength. He is your salvation, your truth, your righteousness, your peace. The power of the Holy Spirit Himself is your sword—meaning His power inside you is what will help you fight. Persevere. Hope. Your faith in what God can do is enough to help you win every spiritual battle.
What Helps Me Stay Strong in the Daily Battles
- Pray with authority. The day my husband and I prayed together about our call to ministry, we prayed with the authority of the name of Jesus knowing that He was in control of our lives—and no matter what He asked from us, we knew we could do all things through Him. We expected oppression, but I am not sure we were 100% ready for it. That day in particular, we said we would take one step and allow God to do the rest. We didn’t want to get in His way. We wanted to trust Him, no matter what.
- Pray with strength. We all go to war in our lifetime. Go through war. We go to battle every day. When you pray, remember to put on the armor of God you read about earlier. We find our strength as God’s warriors by emptying ourselves and filling ourselves with God. We can use what happens in our lives as a gift. As tough as that may be to read, it’s tougher to walk through. When we humble ourselves in prayer, we are praying with strength.
- Pray for help. I have Hashimoto’s thyroid disease, fibromyalgia, chronic fatigue syndrome, chronic mono, and adrenal failure. There’s much more, but think of my body as in constant battle mode. My body is at war within, mistakenly attacking itself. I’m fighting each day with everything I know how to get into remission—including embracing rest and the healing that only rest can bring. There is no medical cure. I’ve learned to pray for help. There is beauty in that. Slowing down also means that I hear His voice. When we pray for help and comfort from God, He gives it. He is our Comforter. If you want someone to pray for help with you, just ask.
- Pray for discernment. At some point, all three of my children have been told that they have a severe health issue and disabilities that cannot be cured. I pray daily for my children’s health, but let me tell you, there have been times when I absolutely had no idea what to do next to help them. The devil is real. He attacks my family through our health, as you can see. The devil came to steal, kill, and destroy. But the beauty is—God came to give abundant life! I pray for clarity, discernment, courage, and peace. I pray for my next step. I know, personally, how sweet it can be to realize your every move is only made through Jesus. And I’ve learned how amazing it is to receive peace or courage about a next step. When I don’t know what to do next, God does. He always does. And he can make the next steps clear to us, helping us to resist even the most painful of demonic oppression.
I don’t know where you are in your life or what you may be experiencing, but I want you to know this: God’s love stays the same. God loves you right where you are in your life. He is waiting for you. You don’t have to fear darkness because God is not overcome by darkness. He is the light that can defeat any oppression you may be facing. He is the source of your miracle for deliverance from darkness!