My Testimony — Part 1
[Note: I have tried to condense this as much as possible so it would be easier to read. I also want to address the astral projection experiences that are described here. Really, I don’t know what to think anymore. All I can say is, it was very real to me. But was it real? I do not know. I certainly do not want to sensationalize anything that may have a probable cause behind it. In the case of Astral Projection, I still do not know. My personal opinion is, it is something that is dark, Occultic and demonic.]
Some Christians over the years have told me I “glorify Satan” when I give my testimony. Please know that is not my aim and never will be. My aim is to hope that others may be able to see, through my experience, that no matter who you are or what you have done, God cares and waits for you to call on His name.
Not all of us grew up in a church setting or went to a seminary to be taught by man the things of God. Some of us, through our own rebellion and wrong doings, have had to learn things a different way. Usually through the pain, loneliness and hard knocks we got along the way by thumbing our nose to a Holy God. That was my case.
I get no pleasure in sharing my past. As my past is just that — my past. It is not one that I am proud of or have any desires to go back to.
I have noticed that some in the church seem to idolize certain testimonies over others. As if the greater the sin in your life before Jesus, the greater your testimony. I abhor that. There is no badge given to any of us who have lived a wicked and evil life. There is no distinction before God. “For all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God. There is none righteous, no not one.”
If you are one that has not lived what you may think is a “wicked” life, then be glad that God kept you from some things. But, don’t you dare judge anyone who may have lived a little worse in your eyes. You too, still need a Savior. And for those who may have a testimony similar to mine, remember your deliverances and from Whom they came. Don’t let anyone make you believe you are somehow “special” because of your past. Because just like me, you are not. There is no special trophy for us. It is not about us. It is about He who saved our soul from hell. Let us not forget this.
Jesus Christ, the Son of God and God Himself, became very real to me in 1976. This is our story on how and when He came into my life.
From the age of 12 to 19, I studied and practiced the occult. It started with Astrology and then went on to phrenology, numerology, palmistry, astral projection, witchcraft, tarot cards, Ouija board and trying to communicate with the dead. But before I get into all of that, go back with me a little further.
When I consider Your heavens,
the work of your fingers,
The moon and the stars,
which you have ordained,
What is man that you are mindful of him…
It seems like I always believed there was a God. My father began teaching me about Him when I was very young. Sitting on my daddy’s lap in the back yard on moonlit nights, he would tell me, “Baby, see that moon up there? See all those stars. God made them.” I would gaze at the sky because even back them, the heavens were every bit as awesome to me as they are now. My father would say, “Baby, if you wink at the stars they will wink back at you.” With my thumb in my mouth, I would wink at the stars and sure enough, they would wink back.
Daddy would tell me there was a man on the moon and if I looked hard enough I could see him. I looked and looked and eventually I did see him. I still can see him. The awesomeness of Gods’ work to make a planet that actually looks like a face, tilting ever so slightly peering down at the earth still amazes me.
My mother too, taught me there was a God. She did this by teaching me how to pray at a very young age. Night after night of “God bless…God bless…God bless,” everybody I could think of while she patiently waited for me to finish.
But I never knew the name of this God. It would not be until years later that I would find out his name is Jesus.
At 12 years old a girl at school introduced me to astrology. I thought it was cool because of my previous fascination of the planets. I began to read everything I could on the subject and the next thing I knew I was studying numerology. By the age of 17 I had gone from just a child-like curiosity to a deep searching for truth. I longed for truth and sought it in the occult.
At around 17 (?) years old, I had a very unusual experience one night. After studying for a few hours I finally went to bed. I was not sleepy or tired, having insomnia. A couple minutes went by and then all of a sudden I heard a rushing noise in my ears. I will compare it to the waves of the ocean with a sound of buzzing in my head. I opened my eyes and I was floating over my bed watching myself lay in bed. The emotion going through me was incredible. One of complete peace and freedom.
I decided to go into my parents’ room to see if I could wake them up. I went through the hallway to their room and hovered over their bed watching them sleep. I called out to them but they did not move. I then went to my brothers’ room and did the same thing. I got the same response. Then a voice spoke to me and said, “Go to (a friends’ house) she will see you.”
I started to go through the exterior wall of the house and then a much greater voice spoke, “EVIL!” That voice shook me so terribly that I found myself back in my body, sweating, trembling and paralyzed. A sensation like a rubber band was trying to stretch something out of my body. I fought it. I became more afraid at not being able to move. Finally, after what seemed hours I was able to move a finger or a toe and I was able to move. I got out of bed and went to look at the clock to see the time. Twenty minutes had passed by. Just twenty minutes. I was shaken, but still curious and fascinated. At the time I did not know what this experience was.
A few months later, after finding a book at a used bookstore, I found out it had a name. I ignored the voice that spoke “EVIL!“ to me that night. I added astral projection to my studies and began to practice it at will.
A righteous man regards the life of his animal,
but the tender mercies of the wicked are cruel.
Later at the age of 19, I got my own apartment. Someone gave me a cute little puppy and I named him Sancho. He was my constant companion. I loved him, yet something in me began to treat him horribly. Especially after trying to read the Bible. I would try to read the Bible late at night, but the words in red made me angry. I would throw the Bible at the wall with a rage and if Sancho happened to be near me, I would pick him up and throw him across the room. The poor little dog would let out a whelp and then go hide behind the couch. Even now, just remembering my cruelty, sickens me and saddens me greatly. Thankfully, he never got hurt.
For those readers who are animal lovers and would be angry with me, I too am an animal lover today, I no longer treat animals that way, and not only that, but I have been forgiven. I do not say that lightly or flippantly. I still live with the shame of what I did to that little dog. I believe we can be forgiven. However, I believe sometimes God will allow us to remember certain things we did so we do not repeat them. Such as in my case.
My cruelty was not only towards my little dog but also my little sister who is ten years younger than me. Before I moved into my own apartment I enjoyed tormenting her. Frightening her at every opportunity.
Oddly enough, though, it was the love I had for my little sister that kept me from taking my own life many times. Many times, I was reminded by a voice in my head, “Do not kill yourself. Think of your little sister. What would she do if she did not have you in her life?” I was torn on how I could be so cruel yet feel such a deep love for her. I would be reminded of how my little sister came to be; how I prayed every single night for two years for a baby sister. I was eleven when she was born and how excited I was that this God with no name heard my prayer!
I began to hate myself knowing there was something very dark and evil in me and I didn’t know what it was. How I hated it, yet it kept telling me it was my friend. It told me that I needed it; in order to know what people were thinking as it would help me read the thoughts of others. The thoughts this thing helped me to read were never kind, encouraging, friendly or helpful. They were harsh judgments telling me things like, “they are not your friend, you can not trust them, no one likes you, you are too weird, you are evil, you will not be happy until you die,” and not to say the many vile names I heard them call me.
My relationships with others were good enough. I guess most thought I was a little odd if not weird. One friend was more special than the rest. I will call her Audrey for now. Audrey saw me during so many bad times. She saw me in times of complete weirdness of shutting down — slightly catatonic — and such times of despondency were as frightening to her as to me. There would be times where I could do nothing but sit and stare listening to the voices. She did not know what to do other than put her arm around my shoulder and cry for us both. Oh, and how she would weep. However, I could not and would not be moved by her tears. Something would rise up in me and hate her for her “being weak,” as the voices would call it. Many times I felt myself holding myself back from wanting to hurt her. But something always stopped me.
How can one be happy and yet feel sadness?
Is it a sort of madness?
And I set my heart to know wisdom and to know madness and folly,
I perceived that this also is grasping for the wind.
For in much wisdom is much grief,
and he who increases knowledge increases sorrow.
-Ecclesiastes 1: 17-18-
It was a sort of madness. I could not understand why my thoughts and emotions did not line up with one another. I began going to a psychologist and she diagnosed me as schizophrenic. I saw her every week or two at the beginning. She wanted to put me on medication and I refused, until one day in her office I had no other choice. Back then in the 1970s, you could smoke in a doctors’ office. I lit up one day and caught my long hair on fire. It was burning and I could not/would not/did not move — I felt nothing. My doctor jumped out of her chair and slapped the fire out. I still sat, not expressing anything. She sat back in her chair and said, “You need to go on medicine and if you don’t, I can have you committed right now. You need help.” I kind of argued with her but knew she meant business. I decided to take the medicine. She was able to obtain a couple of prescriptions and sent me home telling me to come back every week or so. I believe this was in the month of September of 1975. I took one drug to help me sleep at night. The other drug was an anti-psychotic. I did not notice any change other than I could sleep a little better. The voices and bad thoughts were still in my head, constantly tormenting me.
I kept on studying late at night and would not go to bed until dawn, as night time was increasingly becoming more fearful. Sometimes, when not seeking it out or not wanting to, I would astral project. One time (and I do know this will be hard to believe) I went to the home of my psychologist. I could not wait for my next session to tell her. When I began to share my experience with her she looked dumb-founded. I told her what her home looked like to the details I could remember. But instead of her being alarmed, she thought it was “cool” and wanted to hook me up with a friend of hers during our next session. She said her friend was into “stuff, just like you are.” I met her friend the next go round and sure enough, she also was a believer in the occult. We chatted about things, but I can not remember what. I don’t remember the purpose of even meeting her. I am sure though it was meant to draw me deeper into the occult. Nothing ever came of it.
But when I looked for good,
evil came to me;
And when I waited for light,
then came darkness.
As the sun went down, nighttime became unbearable. I hated the dark of night. I usually stayed up until daybreak waiting for the sun to come up. I began to have panic attacks at night. Many voices would be speaking in my head at the same time, sometimes shouting, calling me names, accusing me, speaking ill of others and telling me to take my life. I heard whispering around me and my name being called. Terrified, I would call certain people at night telling them I could sense an evil all around me. These precious friends would either listen to me or come and pick me up in the middle of the night and take me home with them.
One night after studying, I decided to try and get some sleep because I had to go to work the next day. One of the voices came to me and said, “What would you do if the lights went off in the middle of the night?” It was a taunting voice. Panic rose up in me. It went on, “You know you would be scared. So you better get a flashlight just in case.” I did what the voice said. I ran to my kitchen cupboard and grabbed the flashlight.
Leaving most of the lights on in my small apartment, I went to bed with the flashlight on my nightstand. I drifted off into a fitful sleep. A couple hours later I woke to find all the lights off. I could barely see, it was so dark. With a sense of dread and foreboding, I got out of bed, fumbling around in the dark, feeling for the flashlight. A slight sense of relief washed over me as I found it and turned it on. I looked out the window. All the apartment complex was dark. There had been no storms and I was puzzled as to what could have caused the power failure.
One of the voices came to me and said, “See. I told you, you might need the flashlight. See what kind of power I can give to you?” My fear of the dark went away for that moment. I went back to bed wanting more of this power.
There were times when I was compelled to hurt myself. One night at work, I was in the back washing dishes. Something like a trance came over me and was allowing scalding hot water to run over my hands. Something told me to keep my hands in the water and let them remain there. I felt no pain as I watched my hands get redder and redder. One of my co-workers and a very good friend, thought there was a fire with the steam being so great. She rushed into the room, seeing me, alarmed, she called out my name. I heard her. But could not move. She ran over, grabbed my hands and said, “What on earth is wrong with you!” I felt nothing. I was in a sense, dead.
Before I moved in the apartment, I began trying to communicate with my dead grandmother. She died when I was 11 and for some reason I found myself missing her. I began to have experiences of seeing her. Whether actual dreams or not, I still do not know. The first time I was still at home. She was in my parents’ room and looked so much younger than I remembered her. On my parents’ bed were laid out all kinds of pictures; photos of my past and photos I had never seen. I asked her, “How did you get here?” She said, “They sent me in a box.” Hunting for the box, I looked around the room for it. I saw no box but I did noticed for the first time the room had a bluish-whitish glow. There was a little bunny rabbit with the same glow around it. I laughed at the thought of a bunny rabbit coming from heaven with my grandmother. I asked her why she came. She said, “To warn you about driving, drugs and alcohol. I have a friend whose daughter was killed in a car wreck from drinking.” At the time I did not drive a car. And when I did go and try and get my drivers’ license many times over the years, her words haunted me. Causing me a terrible fear of driving.
I asked her what the pictures meant. She did not answer. She just looked lovingly at me. There was a picture of a beautiful young woman and I asked who it was. She said it was her. For some reason I can not explain, I became angry and said, “That is not you! That is not my Little Maw!” She spoke gently and sweetly, “We all change when we get there.”
Another picture had caught my eye. It was one of a young woman with long blonde hair, wearing a brown fringe jacket facing what looked like to be a mountain. I questioned her about this but she did not answer. (It would be a few months later as I was walking to my therapist that I would remember that picture. I was walking up the hill leading to the place that was in the midst of a woodsy setting. It was autumn and I was wearing a leather brown fringe jacket I had recently gotten. As I was walking, I noticed the hills and then I remembered the picture. I was looking up at what appeared to be mountains. The emotion I had at that time was both frightening and exhilarating. I began to believe I was receiving more of the power I coveted.
I stepped forward to hug her but the next thing I knew, I was back in my bed, able to see in my parents’ room. The event was so real I was certain she was still there. But all I saw was a slight breeze blowing through the shear curtains in the bedroom.
After this, I began to question more the mysteries of death. I really believed someone or something was giving me a power. I wanted to believe it was the God with no name. I tried invoking my grandmother many times after that experience. I even began praying to her asking her to take my prayers to the God that had no name. I asked for her help in living. The more I talked to her, the more I wanted to be with her. The more I wanted to be with her the more I wanted to die.
By the time I was out on my own, I could fairly guess the astrological sign of others. I used it to help me decide who I would let in my world or not. I was beginning to read tarot cards and could read palms fairly accurately. I was becoming more of a believer that the occult was where the power and truth was. I was convinced the meaning of life and my purpose was in this and nothing more.
I went to the apartment laundry mat one day and started up a conversation with two women who were new tenants. I began telling them about the occult and I asked if they would like to come over one day for coffee. They took me up on it. They noticed my tarot cards on the coffee table and asked if I could read the cards for them. I said sure and began to do so. I did not know anything about these women, yet, I began to read to them what the cards said. They were either humoring me or there was something going on there, being pleasantly surprised at the reading. I was too for that matter.
I began to get more proud believing the lie that some great gift of the heavens was being bestowed upon me. As the days grew into dark nights I nurtured the power by studying and seeking even more through all forms of the occult.
The movie “The Exorist” had been out the past few years. I had already seen it once. Tripping on LSD the first showing of it in 1973. I went to see it again taking my little brother who was 13 years old at the time. I could hardly wait to see his fear of the images on the screen. Something in me loved to see terror in others as much as I dreaded it in myself. I became ecstatic seeing his fear.
At the movie as I watched my little brother’s fear, a great sense of power and energy surged in me. It was like a drug. I laughed and laughed at him, mocking him, ridiculing him. It strengthened me in some strange way and caused me to have no compassion or empathy towards a little boy scared out of his mind. All I cared about was this high and keeping it.
My morbid desire to see others afraid would vanish as I began to sense a fear that almost crippled me. I stayed up and studied the occult until almost daybreak. One night, I was sleeping in my bed when I had a nightmare. Upon waking, I couldn’t remember anything about the dream. I just felt a great sense of evil and terror all around me. Getting out of bed, I went and laid down on the couch after turning every light on in the place. I believed that the light would drive the terror away. But it didn’t.
As I lay on the couch, listening to a soothing radio station, my eyes heavy trying my best not to fall back to sleep lest some great terror come upon me, a chant began to take over my head; “Something is going to get you. Something is going to get you. Something is going to get you even with the lights on.” Over and over it went in my head, taunting me, like it was almost singing.
A poster of Buddha hung on the wall. It appeared to take on life. I became paralyzed with fear. I made sure I stayed awake until day light. The next morning when the sun finally came up, I felt foolish for being so afraid of a mere poster. Everything seemed better during the day. But when the sun began to go down, fear would begin to grip me again. Night after night.
The nights began to get worse. I dreaded being alone. I asked the young man I was dating at the time to come over and sleep on the couch. I thought his presence would be enough to make the terror flee. But I was wrong. As I lay in bed, I began to get horrible images of him coming into my room with a knife. I tried thinking of others who I knew and trusted, tried to see their faces. But their faces had the same images. Images of hate and murder. All of them coming at me with knives in their hands. I wanted to get up out of bed, take all the knives in my apartment, bring them to the bedroom and put them under my mattress. But I couldn’t. I began to have thoughts and images of the knives floating in mid-air by unseen hands, lingering over my bed, teasing me with my own fear until they had their fun and decided to plunge me with the blades.
Terror and a dread of insanity began to take hold of me. My shrink really was not helping me much. The drugs she had given to help me were useless. Friends were beginning to not know how to deal with me. I was being compelled to distant myself from everyone.
I came to the conclusion that I had no other recourse than to make a pact with the one whom I finally understood was giving me power; Satan.
Therefore I hated life… — Ecclesiastes 2:17–
As a small child, I developed an obsession with death. At the age of 17 the obsession grew worse when the girl who introduced me to the occult, ended up missing and found dead six weeks later. It was a tragic time for all of us who knew her. When the murderers were caught and shown on the local news, I began to become disillusioned with the hippie movement. The murderers were two young men in their late teens. They both had the typical long hair and blue jeans from that era. They looked like any other normal teen-age boys. I can still see them and can still feel the surprise and horror at seeing them. I had expected some old creepy middle aged man as her killer. But, instead, they were of my generation. For me, the days of “peace and love” began to die that day.
One night, I called Audrey, telling her I was afraid I was going to die. She came right over. We sat outside on the porch stoop. I just sat in a semi-catonic state–yielding to the lying voices telling me, “Audrey is not your friend. Do not trust her.” I wanted to express what was going on in me, but couldn’t. Like other times, she did not know what to say and she would just weep for the both of us. I hated her silence. The voices told me she was “weak.” I could hear them mocking her somewhere inside of me.
It would not be until many years later that I would learn just what that did to her. Neither of us knowing Jesus at the time knew how to fight the demonic forces at work in me, she was as terrified as I. Maybe more so, in not knowing what to expect from me. But she never left me. It was a love that surely God had put in her for me at that time.
I began to get more paranoid, not trusting anyone. My therapist wanted to begin taping our sessions. Whatever for, I don’t know. Maybe she wanted to take our sessions home with her or to someone else. I don’t know. Whatever her reason, it only made me more paranoid! Our sessions did not go very far. I kept seeing devil faces everywhere; on the floor, on the cracks in the wall and on the ceiling. When I realized my therapist could not see them, I clammed up and would not work with her.
Being afraid of everything and not being able to sleep brought horrible stress. I quit my job and let the young man I was engaged to take over the bills. Having nothing to pre-occupy my time other than the occult, I studied it with an intense fervor. I felt as if I had all the time in the world yet no time at all. I did not think I would live to see my next birthday.
Ironically enough, this is about the time I picked up an old Bible and began reading the book of Revelation. I had an overwhelming fear of the end of the world since I was very small. It stemmed from my father telling me about the end times. I would listen intently as he would tell me the moon would turn to blood and the world would burn with fire. Reading the book of Revelation brought back those fears. Strangely, as hard as I would try, I could not read any other part of the Bible. There was something about the words in red. Something that drew me to them, yet something that angered me when my eyes rested upon them. I didn’t know Jesus was speaking the words in red. I didn’t know, I just didn’t know. When trying to read those words in red, a rage would overtake me, causing me to throw that Good Book violently across the room. My poor little dog would go hide behind the couch during these times.
I began to see by looking at the faces of other people and noticing their smiles, that I just was not normal. That something was very wrong with me. Oh, how I wanted to be different. I wanted to be like everyone else. Normal, with no voices or fear. Yet, I begin to believe a voice in my head telling me this darkness was something I needed to go through for some special purpose. As if it had a grand purpose destined to full fill some great plan. I can’t remember the plan other than it was a lie.
I began practicing astral projection more. It was not a hard thing for me to do at all. It came easily. Sometimes, a terrible fear went along with it. Like when I was not wanting to do it. A buzzing or a humming would come to me, a very heavy weight would make me paralyzed and then the next thing I know I would be half way out of my body looking at myself sleeping. It felt like I was going to die. I would panic thinking, what if I die, where will my soul, the part of me that is sitting up next to my sleeping body, go? One night I was out (I hate to use this word, never the less there is not other way to put it) flying in the field behind my apartment complex. I can’t begin to describe the exhilaration. Then all at once, the fear came and the next thing I am swooping down in my bed.
I began having thoughts of taking my life. One day while out walking I sat on a tree stump looking at the cloudy December skies. I began to talk to my Little Maw telling her it would not be long until I would be with her. I told her how sad I was and so confused. “I wish you were here to tell me what to do,” I said. “I’ll be with you soon, when God tells me the right time to die.”