I should say upfront, I don’t believe in ‘ghosts’. I believe that when you die, you die. Your spirit leaves the earth,no lingering, no hanging about, no haunting.
Having said that, I still believe the supernatural world is very real. I believe there’s an epic battle taking place around us constantly, a fight for what’s right and a fight for what’s evil. And sometimes, humans get caught up in the crossfire.
I’ve had unusual experiences in the past, strange dreams, feelings that something wasn’t right, but I was staying at a hotel recently and as soon as I walked into the room, something in my spiritual guts seemed to recoil. Before I even unpacked my bags, I prayed out loud, asking God for his protection, for his angels to stand guard.
The feeling of ‘off’ persisted and that night, I kept waking up feeling uneasy and deeply on edge. Numerous dark images filled my dreams and the following morning, I was exhausted after a broken night’s sleep.
The following night, it seemed to get worse, but this time I woke up with a sensation of some thing grabbing my feet and shaking the bed. This happened two times, and I then decided, enough was enough!
I texted a few people and asked them to pray, I declared Psalm 91 out loud and I asked God again for his incredible protection. It was a long night, and if I’m honest, I alternated between feeling victorious, understanding that Christ had already won, and then falling momentarily into the muddy swamp of fear.
I write all this not because I’m wanting to glorify an unseen evil world. But because I want to glorify an unseen, heavenly world.
The truth is, sometimes it takes a brush with evil, to remind us of the extraordinary power and peace of God which we can tap into, whenever we need it. It’s also a gobsmacking reality check/reminder that we ARE surrounded by unseen spiritual forces, and better still, we are given the tools to fight back.
But we have to open our eyes, practice using our spiritual ‘senses’ and discernment to know when something is just wrong or ‘off’.
Know who you are.
It’s the most basic and obvious of Christian theology but it’s something so many of us fail to truly believe; who we are because of what Jesus has done. If we knew who we were, we’d get angry at a spiritual attack, we’d certainly not tolerate it. Knowing who I am, means I actually can take authority. I am the boss’s daughter. I have rights and no evil is allowed to come near my dwelling.
The problem is, fear gets in the way, stampeding across our perspective, making it tricky to see the wood from the trees. But it’s time to understand, to know, to claim our real authority in Jesus.
Keep fighting, even when nothing’s happening.
In the middle of fear, when we don’t feel immediate peace or get instant answers, it’s easy to stop fighting. It feels like this is just not working. But even in the middle of the stress, even when it feels as though your words have no power, God’s Word always has power, even when it doesn’t feel like it. The enemy knows God’s Word, he despises it and because it’s the truth, it pushes him back. A Christian who knows her Bible is a fearful thing.
It’s possible (as I discovered) to have peace, even in a very odd and uncertain situation. I didn’t like what was happening but I also knew ultimately that God has promised to set his angels to guard me. It didn’t change what I was experiencing, but the knowledge that God was greater, bigger than any vicious attack, was something beautiful and pure to cling on to.
As dawn broke on my second night, the gloom started to lift. Lying there, wondering if I’d just imagined it all, listening to the birds twittering outside, I knew that whatever sort of fight I’d just been dragged through, God was still in charge. It’s not clear why he sometimes allows us to go through fear, stress and difficulty. But I do know one thing, getting a glimpse of darkness, gives me an even greater glimpse and gratitude for the power of God.