I went to get my nails done and took my daughter with me. The salon was quiet, and there were three other workers sitting down at a computer. We talked as best as we could through the language barrier. About halfway into it, this gripping fear came over me, and I felt really nervous. I could not figure it out. The workers began to talk to each other and move about the salon, and it just didn’t settle right with me. I felt bad for feeling that way, but it was growing louder and louder. I began to role-play scenarios and contemplated leaving, even though my nails were only halfway done. I wanted to whisper to my daughter to stay alert but didn’t want to cause her concern. Finally, I realized there was indeed real and present danger, and I needed to move into action. I began to walk in my authority over it by commanding the fear to go in Jesus’ name and canceled any assignments of the enemy. I prayed for protection over my daughter and invited the Holy Spirit to stand on guard. I had no idea what was going on, what could have happened, or what I was sensing, except my spirit felt sexually unsafe, and I have the power and authority in the name of Jesus to do something about it. Ironically, the moment we got in the car, my daughter said, “Mom! Did you feel that? I felt so sexually unprotected in that place.” I asked why she didn’t say anything, and she said, “I just invited Jesus to come and deal with it.” We can introduce our children to their ever-present Bodyguard!
- Authority, Sexual Safety
Intimidation is a spirit that gets you to shrink back and remain silent and small. The enemy can work through circumstances, people, leaders, family members, or complete strangers to attempt to intimidate you. You expose it by realizing it is not always coming from within you but ON you, and it must be dealt with using your authority.
Ask any adult who grew up in Minnesota in the ’80s who Jacob Wetterling is, and they will tell you. He was an 11-year-old boy who was abducted while riding his bike home, and his body was not found for 27 years. It left a bone-chilling fear in parents that the same thing could happen to their child. Parents kept their children safe by not letting them go out at night or roam the neighborhood like they once did. Countless parents partnered with FEAR over what happened to Jacob, and it shaped their parenting. The children watched their responses and learned how to handle uncertainty and danger. As a mother now myself, I get it, but what happened is that it taught a generation in that region about fear and feeling unsafe. Those kids, myself included, grew up with an undying fear that something terrible could happen. It was nearly 30 years later that I broke agreement with the fear and learned that I was safe at night.
How you respond to current events NOW has the potential to shape your child and how they respond to future crises. Are you teaching and modeling for them how to walk in fear and panic or confidence and faith? They are watching you and are learning how to respond in times of crisis. If you are partnering with fear and want to be free from it, let’s talk about it. We have got to realign our children so that they do not grow up being afraid and managing fear. There is a difference between truth-based concern that should move us into wisdom vs. creating a demonic stronghold.
So many issues with children can be resolved with parents using their God-given authority both in the natural and spiritual realm. You have lost half the battle if you fear the devil or your child’s response. RISE UP and use your God-given authority over that sickness, fear, conflict, disunity, tension, strife, anxiety, stress, etc. Satan is defeated, not you, your situation, or your child.
This is written by a spiritual son, and I am so proud of him and his journey to freedom.
“I was first exposed to pornography in the 6th grade when a friend at school passed around a dilapidated nudie magazine he probably found rotting in the street somewhere. I had never had a personal conversation with an adult regarding sexuality up to that point, and public school sex education in the early 90s was pretty much solely focused on anatomy and function. Needless to say, when my turn came to take the magazine home, I sat on my bed, electrified by entirely new feelings of wonder, excitement, danger, and shame, which produced a healthy blend of irresistible fascination and self-loathing. Shortly afterward, I was exploring the basement of our house one afternoon and came across several hidden boxes of decades-old pornographic material. This reinforced a couple of beliefs that had been developing in my subconscious – that every person with a penis had a raw hunger for sex that would never be satisfied. And that the only thing worse than living with this unshakeable burden would be to open up and talk about it with someone else. The years that followed are a blur of cognitive dissonance in memory. At church, I was captivated by the message of God’s grace and acceptance. At school, I felt desperately insecure about how I (didn’t) fit in socially. And at home, I buried myself in isolating and self-destructive behavior, firmly believing that anyone – family, friends, strangers, Jesus Himself – who learned what I was really like would turn away in disgust forever. After high school, I moved across the country for college in hopes of a fresh start. While I grew in self-confidence and self-expression, my sexuality remained stunted and a source of shame, allowed to peek its head out only in the company of a computer screen in the darkness or in pushing boundaries in dating relationships that were never explicitly acknowledged or discussed. I felt increasingly compartmentalized between the good things I was being exposed to and challenged to pursue and my hidden life of sexual shame, to the point where I began to have regular nightmares about the house I grew up in, the basement in particular. The dreams varied in detail, but the theme was always the same, and each time I woke up uneasy with a sense of dread from someone having entered or trying to enter my house with a clear intention to do harm. I continued to have these dreams consistently over the next fifteen years. In my mid-twenties, I finally gave up on hoping for a magic bullet from God to fix my broken areas overnight and opened up to some friends about my struggles with sexual purity. To my immense relief, I learned that I wasn’t alone in this area, and we decided to meet weekly as a group. Relief soon turned to puzzlement and resignation as we quickly realized that none of us had any idea of how to actually help each other. Our friendships deepened through the experience, but none of us got any healthier. Several years, a few moves, a couple of other men’s groups, and a wedding later, I reached the point of moderately successful behavior control. I hadn’t grown in any healthy level of sexual purity, let alone come close to the kind of freedom Jesus and Paul gush about in the New Testament, but I was managing to ‘act out’ only once every few months. I joined a men’s group at church called ‘The Whole Man Project’. The very first night I walked into the room, I heard a message of freedom being preached from a place of conviction and experience that I’d never thought possible, and I left wondering if I dared to hope for true freedom for myself. I joined a small group and started on the gradual but upward journey of uncovering and processing the hurts, pain, and false beliefs stored up over a lifetime that was underlying my lack of sexual self-control. In my mind, I began to switch from fighting an unending defensive battle just to avoid stupid behavior to fighting to take ground in how I wanted my life to play out. Taking one step at a time toward the abundant life Jesus promised His followers. About six months after I joined The Whole Man Project, I was chatting with a mentor one morning, which turned into a ministry session where she led me through revisiting some painful experiences. The memory of the day I discovered the pornography collection in the basement was brought to mind. She instructed me to ask Jesus where He was at that moment and write out what He showed me. I saw Jesus in the corner of the room as I was about to open the closet, and I asked Him that if He was there, then why did He let me open the door? I felt Him say that He would never take away the freedom to act and to choose from either myself or those around me, but I felt His fierceness towards the closet. I felt Him say that the enemy wanted to plant something in me, but He had already planned the path to conquer it in advance. She then led me through prayers of forgiveness and generational reconciliation, encountering the heart of the Father, and receiving the equipping and empowering of the Holy Spirit. I realized that I had been waiting for God to chauffeur me to the promised land of freedom while I helplessly sat in the backseat when He had been inviting me to sit up front and take an active role in partnering with Him to move forward together. After that day, my recurring nightmares about the house I grew up in stopped completely. The truth is that we have been reconciled to the Father completely through the work of Jesus on the cross, but that is the starting point for abundant life, not the finish line. Each day, He extends an invitation for us to journey with Him towards wholeness and freedom; how far we want to take it is ultimately up to us.”
Over the years, I have gone after making sure the kids know the following safety boundaries:
We move in partners – period. To this day, we have a rule that whenever they want to check out another aisle at the store, go to the bathroom or hang out at the mall, they have to have a partner. It is non-negotiable and one of the ways to safeguard vulnerability. It has been a bit of a challenge over the years with my son, especially with public bathrooms. I generally find the family bathroom and wait for him outside. If he has to use the bathroom alone, I would stand at the door and say something like, “I will wait for you here,” but loud enough for others to hear. I do not believe this is helicopter parenting; I believe it is standing on guard in an area where people have preyed on vulnerable children.
Let’s talk for a moment about the process of isolation and lies as it pertains to sexual instability.
When a child faces sexual abuse or emotional trauma it affects their mind, body, AND spirit. After the event is over the door remains open in the spirit realm, which is why many never fully recover despite therapy or counseling. It is common for childhood sexual abuse and emotional trauma to be confusing to their underdeveloped brain. Sometimes the child deeply admires the one doing harm, and it confuses their heart. They love the person but dislike what’s being done to them. Other times a child is confused by the way the abuse made them feel. I am not saying a child liked being abused as their spirit is aware it is not okay, but sometimes the child values the attention being given and it confuses their mind. They associate affection and attention, a God-given need, with something that is twisted and unpleasant. The confusion and lack of clarity bring isolation and shame (something is wrong with me). If someone of the same sex violated the child, a spirit begins to influence the child giving them ‘evidence’ (lies) that they were created differently. It is essential when helping children process molestation, abuse and emotional trauma that we close doors in the spirit realm, as well so that the enemy no longer has a legal right to influence, harass and mentally torment.
Often people who struggle with their sexual identity will say they knew since they were at a very young age of their preference, yet a human body is not sexually activated until puberty. I, however, fully believe people who give this account of their journey because the enemy isolates and then whispers lies to children ALL THE TIME and their sexuality is not exempt. I believe it is a primary target of the enemy simply because of the profound isolation and shame it brings to the core of one’s existence. Never before have we seen such an epidemic of people struggling with the way they were born.
I have ministered to men who grew up in homes where their mom was so abused by the men in her life, she had a bitter judgment against the entire male race. Her son’s sexual identity threatened her, and she would attack anything masculine. The isolation is paralyzing for a young boy who doesn’t understand why being a boy is wrong and unacceptable to his own mother. The enemy isolates and then whispers the lie, “You should be a girl,” “If you were a girl your mom would love you.”
There is a girl who grew up in extreme emotional trauma (isolation) and would have paralyzing nightmares. She would go to her mom in the middle of the night shaking. Her mom would allow her to come in her bed, but she had to rub her back to stay. The girl began to believe that being comforted meant touching/affection with someone of the same sex. A friend was raped by a teen girl when he was just four years old (isolation). It opened the door in the spiritual realm to be harassed and tormented. He grew up with an unhealthy interest in private parts which was the evidence (lie) that he was born gay. He grew up in a home where his dad was physically and emotionally abusive (isolation), and when he was in the 3rd grade, a teacher called out in front of the whole class, “You will grow up to be a gay,” and then proceeded to instruct the entire class on what that meant (shame). From that day on, peers changed his name to a girl’s name.
If children aren’t taught by parents who they are created to be, the world around them will. Countless times I hear the story of a child who is born with gifts and talents that are different than the expectation of the parent such as a boy with a music talent or a girl who doesn’t like dresses and they are taught something is wrong with them (isolation) for their likes and interests. In isolation, the enemy whispers lie about their true identity. Their ‘evidence’ (lies) is that they must be born that way because they can’t deny their love and passion for their gifts and talents. This is inferior parenting, not something wrong with the child.
Many of you know my story where my mom asked me my entire childhood if my dad ever did XYZ in the name of sexual abuse. She never told me he did but asked me, putting the burden of discovery on my shoulders. The isolation of those thoughts tormented me every day of my life for nearly twenty years. It gripped me so deep, death was my only relief (lie). As I have walked out this journey, God revealed nothing happened with my dad. It was a lie. I began to process with God how in the world could a mother do that to her own child. What He showed me is PROFOUND. I pray that you have eyes to see what God revealed to me.
My mom had unforgiveness in her heart towards my dad through their failed marriage which is always an open door for the enemy to influence, but my mom saw a sexual spirit ON me, and the enemy put 2 and 2 together, but his math was wrong. My mom honestly believed my dad did something, but what she was really seeing/feeling was that I was exposed to porn from a neighbor and a sexual spirit was attempting to influence me through the shame of what I had witnessed. I was a girl who needed to be protected from that spirit, but because of the unforgiveness in her heart, the enemy influenced her with a lie that nearly cost me my life – literally.
The above story about the young boy who was raped by a teen girl is another example. The teacher SAW the sexual spirit on him, and because of his own heart, the enemy helped him to put 2 and 2 together that he must be gay, but the truth was HE NEEDED HELP! That precious boy was being abused and was in profound emotional pain, shame and isolation. He needed to be protected in private, not exposed publicly. He needed love, not shame; community, not isolation.
When Christians demand behavior modification when someone is struggling it only brings more shame and isolation. At the same time, I think the greater pain is when Christians move into apathy claiming, “We just need to love like Jesus.” It is NOT loving to hear the stories above and leave someone in their confusion, isolation or pain. It is not loving to accept the band-aids of those who have endured mental torment at the hands of the enemy because of what others have done to them. It is not loving to reject, nor it is loving to tolerate. Love looks like embracing those in our community who have walked through isolation so profound that the enemy has lied to them about the core of their existence.
The reason why this is such a heated issue between Christians and the gay community is that it IS a spiritual issue. We have failed to equip the Body with tools to help CHILDREN who are being sexually abused and in emotional trauma (isolation) and have only pushed in the wounds deeper by ignoring their experience and demanding they change their behavior. This breeds children who grow up to judge and rebel against those who failed to help in their time of need.
HeartWork – I want you to crawl back into the story of the young boy who was raped by a teen girl and how the teacher responded. Ask Jesus to show you a picture of His heart for that child. Let Him align your heart to His.
Shock and Awe
Shock and awe (technically known as rapid dominance) is explained as a tactic based on the use of overwhelming power and spectacular displays of force to paralyze the enemy’s perception of the battlefield and destroy their will to fight. This is true in the natural times of war and how the enemy works. The enemy takes situations (opening a bill in the mail, news of a death, low grade, car accident, trauma, etc.) and uses this shock and awe tactic on people, including children. Their entire being is on alert, much like a hand where all the fingers are flexed simultaneously. The brain, mind, emotions, and nervous system are overwhelmed, and in that split-second moment before logic and coping skills kick in, the enemy whispers his lie (“You are all alone,” “No one cares,” “Your God is not powerful,” etc.). When the body, mind, and emotions begin to calm down (like fingers that go back to a relaxed state), the lie remains because, at that moment, the lie FEELS true based on the evidence. The enemy then gets to influence us because we partnered with the lie.
Here is an excellent example of how this plays out. Many in the world are beginning to calm down from the shock and awe over recent events and are overcoming this tactic of the enemy. “No, no, no, I will not be influenced by fear. I do not partner with the idea of doom or lack. I will not bow down, lie down, or shrink back. I am a child of God with a Father who has defeated the spirit behind this attack. I will cling to Him, His Kingdom, His power, His voice, and His resources in this hour.” I WILL arise!
One of the greatest tools I have as a parent against the sex industry is to teach my children that it isn’t about laws, rules, or legalism but rather identity. People who do not know who they are will use their bodies for their worth and value. We aren’t just guarding our eyes but guarding the person who doesn’t know who they are. I often will say, “That is someone’s daughter,” or “No one taught him who he is,” and the kids have learned over time that sexual choices are rooted more in identity than in sexual behavior. Spiritual orphans use their flesh to feel worth and value. A Son and Daughter know their worth and value and can therefore manage their flesh accordingly. Don’t just read this and say AMEN. Go teach your children about it.
We got addicted to a fireman show during the quarantine season. Over and over, these brave men and women would run into the crisis while everyone else was running away, full of panic and fear. This concept in the spiritual realm has so struck me. If Jesus lives inside of me, I have the fire hose, ax, and respirator to run INTO the building (crisis), not away. A fire untamed turns into a wildfire. Firefighters have one goal: Containment (the action of keeping something harmful under control or within limits).
We are to be suited up with God’s armor and the tools of heaven to defeat the works of the enemy here on earth. Jesus gave His life for payment for that freedom. Ezekiel 37 – “The hand of the LORD was upon me, and he brought me out by the Spirit of the LORD and set me in the middle of a valley; it was full of bones. … Then he said to me, ‘Prophesy to these bones and say to them, `Dry bones, hear the word of the LORD!’’” Prophecy is simply hearing God for others and declaring it.
I say PROPHESY TO THAT STORM! Your words have so much power, they hold either LIFE or DEATH (Proverbs 18:21). Model this concept for them by looking at the sky and lamenting, “Oh no, it’s sunny out. My flowers are going to wilt, and all the bugs are going to dry up. This is the worst thing ever that the sun is out.” Of course, you are being silly, but we can take something and begin to declare destruction, fear, and death over it.
Make a list of things that are affecting them right now and PROPHESY over them. “I speak to the fear and say _____,” “Sickness, you have no hold on me,” “I declare my city will be safe,” “I will have an amazing school year.”
FACT VS. TRUTH – A fact is something that is proven true. But the truth is unchangeable.
Example: Kids at school wouldn’t sit with me for lunch – FACT.
Something is wrong with me – LIE.
It hurts that kids wouldn’t sit with me, but I am still wanted and belong – TRUTH.
There are a lot of things being exposed right now in the world – FACT.
The enemy is winning, and we are going to suffer – LIE.
God is exposing that which has been in darkness, and He still sits on the throne – TRUTH.
Do not mix your facts with your truth. It is the TRUTH that sets you free, not facts. We do not live an evidence-based life but a truth-based life. Ask, “Jesus, what facts have I grabbed onto?” “Jesus, what is Your truth?” Break agreement with facts and align your mind and heart with truth.
DO NOT PRACTICE WITCHCRAFT. This is VITAL right now. Prophecy is declaring the future through the power of the Holy Spirit. Witchcraft is declaring the future through the power of Satan. John 10:10 shares that the enemy comes to steal, kill, and destroy, while Jesus came to overcome and bring life. Your WORDS decide which side you want to camp in. We all know what a lie is and how much havoc it can wreak on our minds, hearts, emotions, and relationships. We behave based on what we believe. But witchcraft is when we begin to SPEAK IT OUT in declarations. “They hate me,” “I don’t belong there,” “This is terrible,” “We are going to die, “This is the worst thing ever,” “This year is going to stink.”
Some of you have been practicing witchcraft by your words. What we declare in the atmosphere becomes our reality. With so much going on in the world today, we need to be extra careful of our words as we could be strengthening the wrong kingdom. This is not just about having happy thoughts during a real crisis but declaring the TRUTH in the midst of it. If my kids are upset and say something like, “This is so unfair,” I validate that it may indeed look and feel that way. But I help connect them to the truth by helping them see God cares deeply about unjust scales and is a God of justice and help them rewrite their prophecy to say, “This feels so wrong, but God is in control and can make it right on my behalf.” There are no victims when God is in control!
Facts serve as kindling for the fire. Witchcraft is gasoline poured on a fire. His truth is the fire extinguisher that defeats the enemy from consuming those in your home, city, country, and world!
“Jesus, I confess that I have partnered with FACTS and allowed them to turn into words of witchcraft. Jesus, Do You forgive me?” (and then wait to receive His forgiveness).
When I see a fire starting, I will run into the burning building (storm) and prophesy the TRUTH over the situation.
TEACH THE CHILDREN – Take a piece of paper and draw a heart in the center. Share that the heart represents them and things that affect them, both good and bad. On the left side, draw a gasoline container (like the one Dad uses to fill the lawnmower), and on the right side, draw a picture of a firefighter. Take an example, such as not being allowed to see their friends. Point to the gasoline and begin using words of witchcraft and doom. “I will never get to see them,” “This is awful,” etc. Now point to the firefighter and declare words like, “I will get through this even though it is hard,” “This is not for forever,” and “God will give me a creative way to connect.” Help them to see the difference in what side they are partnering with.
In the days to come, when you see your child (or yourself) pour gasoline on the problem, be mindful that your words contain life or death, and YOU PICK which one you want to declare.
I have a friend whose teen daughter is fighting for her life after harming herself. I have another friend whose teen daughter ran away, and they don’t know where she is. I have another friend with a teen son addicted to porn. Another friend has a daughter in a psych ward. The one thing they all have in common is that they all passionately love Jesus. The battle for our children is real. We MUST equip our children with heaven’s tools to deal with hurts, lies, and offenses. As believers, we may experience the beginning of John 10:10, but we get to camp out in the last part! “The thief comes only to steal and kill and destroy; I have come that they may have life, and have it to the full.”