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Jesus came to heal the brokenhearted and preach deliverance to the captives!

Before Laura and I came in contact with John Torell, we were living what I consider to be a typical lifestyle of idolatry, listening to rock music and watching ungodly television and movies. If we happened to have an extra glass of wine and got buzzed, it was all in good fun. We had no idea how these practices impacted us spiritually because we were spiritually empty. We watched the scariest movies we could find to try and get a spiritual ďfix,Ē and when the movies no longer filled the gap, we ended up searching for an alternative. We took a wrong turn on Netflix and viewed a documentary called Zeitgeist. While this movie raised some interesting questions, it did so with incomplete mainstream propaganda. This nudged us into the realm of the New Age and we started questioning the existence of Jesus.

Then we came upon David Icke and his reptilian theories but red flags started popping up in our minds. These New Age ideas were on the fringes of religion, insinuating an alien savior and how the Paladians were coming to evangelize us. I was intrigued but there was a subtle aftertaste of deceit because they avoided the Bible and the truth it offers. We had almost gotten to the point of throwing away our Bibles when the Holy Spirit gave us our final warning! My wife and I started hearing thoughts in our heads that were not ours. These thoughts were murderous, violent and pure evil. We ran as fast as we could back to the Bible and asked Jesus for forgiveness and repented for having ever doubted.

I turned off David Icke and found myself listening to a radio show on Blog Talk Radio called The Hagmann and Hagmann Report. One of the guests made mention of Shannon Davis on Omega Man Radio. We started poking around the chat room and listening to the archives and found that his show focused on deliverance through Jesus. We were fascinated and listened to a couple of the mass deliverances offered by some of the guest pastors. We started off with Ivory Hopkins, John Kyle, and Jim Croft among others. When we heard Pastor John give a teaching on the curses of the Bible and the relevance of the Old Testament, we knew that this was something that we had not heard before. Laura had a reflexology and acupressure business and she emailed multiple pastors seeking advice. John Torell was the only one that responded and told us that these practices are based in the occult. We shut down the business the next day and never looked back.

We had ordered a few different books on deliverance and for the most part they were all the same. Pastor Johnís book, Christian Dynamics Course 1, was completely different. It offered a more thorough introduction to the Christian faith and the dynamics of curses and bondage. As we studied and read through the book, we learned how to break the curses and remove the demonic legal grounds for us to be oppressed. We completed a fairly in-depth study of the book with Pastor John answering questions along the way. During this process we also cleansed our house of any occult items. The learning curve was pretty steep because everyday objects that we accept as simple decorations are actually doorways to demon oppression. We were financially strapped but decided nevertheless that we should see Pastor John in person. We had enough air miles to cover the flights and were able to get a discount on a room at a local B&B. It seemed that God wanted us to go!

I look fondly back on my childhood as being blessed with two loving parents who worked hard and provided for me and my sister. That having been said, I was never self-aware as a child or even as a young adult for that matter. I felt like a passenger looking out a window as things seemed to unfold around me. When going through the deliverance process, your memory is focused on all the traumas of your life from start to present. These traumas not only injure our physical bodies but they also scar the deepest parts of our soul. When these traumas occurred, my natural response was  to bury them and move on. My family never really addressed feelings. If there was something you had to do, you went and did it; it didnít matter if I was feeling anxious or fearful, there seemed to be an expectation thatís how everybody feels and nobody shows it. Move on and do what needs to be done. This led to buried feelings and the creation of an alter ego Ė the public self and private self. In public I was confident, climbing mountains and conquering oceans through sailing, but privately I was fearful and insecure. As I grew older, these alter egos eventually collided.

I can laugh about it now as I write this but I was a mess inside as a kid. I never seemed to fit in with the other kids and ended up playing by myself or with my sister. I look back upon my family life and it was a fun and wholesome childhood for the most part. I must say that my parents related most of my mistakes to a financial impact and how much it cost them when I screwed up. I remember having a remote control helicopter and every time I crashed, I could hear how much it was going to cost to fix it. I have fond memories of the short flights and the repairs from the many crashes. I learned the mechanics of a helicopter and how to diagnose and fix it without help. Itís unfortunate that the financial overshadowing left me afraid to fly it.

I was in the sixth grade and showed a classmate a ninja throwing star on the school bus and he told a teacher I threatened him with it. I was suspended for a week. His parents were lawyers and my father was furious when he came downstairs to where I had a table set up for model planes. He charged right at me and suddenly the table was gone as it was flung to the side and the contents were scattered. He was in my face and grabbed me by the scruff of my shirt and yelled, ďWhat were you thinking, they could sue us and take everything! Everything we have could be gone!Ē He stormed away and we never talked about it again.

I truly did err but this was how my family handled issues. They sat just below the surface until they boiled over and then everybody was scalded when it blew. This just goes to illustrate that no matter how much we love our children, they are going to receive our words in a different reality than how they were spoken. Perspective is everything. My perspective was rejection, fear and of being a failure.

The earliest trauma I can remember was being told that I had pyloric stenosis as an infant. This infantile disease required emergency surgery at only weeks old. I have some random memories of being scared of a spider as an infant. There were other traumas of which I have no memory and was only later told about. I was been bitten by a German Shepherd in the face as a toddler. The ensuing trip to the emergency room had multiple nurses and my father holding me down as they stitched my face.

I remember at the age of four being jarred awake by something unseen slamming down on the bed next to me. I brushed it off and went back to sleep. After that I would have these episodes that I can only describe as time warps. I would be going about my day and then all of a sudden my head would start to rush and it felt like time was moving real fast, swirling around me like liquid. I would be standing still, seemingly paralyzed. This left me feeling out of touch and out of control, unable to relate to playmates. Did they experience this as well? I had no idea. This lasted until about middle school. I remember one day after the last episode thinking that it had not happened in a while and then it never did again.

One day I was riding my bicycle over to a friendís house and the chain broke. I was peddling pretty hard and crashed in the road, sliding to a stop on my chin and palms. I remember getting up and assessing the damage to my bike. A car stopped and I can remember the look on their faces as blood had soaked the front of my shirt about halfway down. They called my parents and I took another trip to the emergency room. I remember getting stitched back together and having the self control to sit still, and yet in my head I was screaming and could not stop shaking, it was as if I was freezing.

Once the stitches healed, my mother started taking me for laser surgery to try and shrink the scar. I had to sit and endure what felt like a hundred bee stings on my face for about a minute. This was another example of having to endure something and not being able to control it. I remember telling my mother that it hurt but we kept going anyway.

My parents opened a lighting store somewhere around the age of thirteen. They initially had a partner invest with them, and in the interim, our families spent time together. The partner had a son named Jason. They had just moved from California and he seemed older and I thought he was cool because he rode dirt bikes. He became an impromptu role model. One night Jason ended up staying over. I had built a fort out of a blanket and some cushions and crawled in with my Nintendo Gameboy ready to hang out. He took it away and started to molest me. I resisted and told him that what he was doing was not right. Nevertheless, he cooed me and had me under some type of spell; I remember being powerless to stop him from raping me. He had me doing all kinds of things and all the while I was shrinking further and further into myself.

When I woke up the next morning, I remember sneering at him in disgust. I was changed and I knew it. He knew it too. He snickered at me on his way out. I didnít know how but something was drastically different. My soul was shredded and I could feel it. After this incident I became withdrawn and distrustful and developed a strange habit of tearing the skin off the bottoms of my feet and cuticles and eating it. I stopped mutilating my feet shortly thereafter but the cuticle tearing lasted for years. This is also when psoriasis started creeping in with extreme dandruff causing me anxiety in middle school. I had few friends at this point and spent a lot of time in the forest by myself. I would spend my time where I felt safest with the wildlife and the trees or on the computer playing games. I recently spoke with my sister about this. She related to me how I tried to tell my father what had happened. He refused to accept it and told her that he did not believe it and that I was just looking for attention. This trauma was apparently just as bad as any other because I completely blocked it out. 

School was initially easy for me. I was an early reader and a strong student until these traumas occurred in my life and my grades started to drop. I began to resent school as I was constantly failing socially, academically and in sports. I donít remember my parents helping me with my studies. This caused me to resent school even more because I was never taught how to be successful with my studies. It was therefore ironic that I became addicted to the written word. I read everything around me. Cereal boxes, instruction manuals, novels, shampoo bottles in the shower etc. This was something I could do and not mess up.

One summer before going off to camp, I remember my family talking about how skinny I was. This was really hurtful because I was facing rejection and hurt at seemingly every turn. Now my family had turned a critical eye toward me. It may have been said in an offhand manner but I remember being deeply hurt and self-conscious for years afterwards.

In the 9th grade my hair was constantly getting in my eyes. My mother took me for a haircut over the weekend and had them perm my bangs up out of the way. On the following Monday I was mortified as complete strangers came up and asked me if I had gotten a perm. If I could have crawled home in a ditch on the side of the road I would have. This just added to the mountain of anxiety I was hauling around. I believe it was around this time that I turned to masturbation for some type of emotional release and I became addicted. It was a shameful and private act but I felt as long as nobody knew it was okay. This lasted up through my first marriage.

Because of my social and academic rejections, I became an avid rock climber and windsurfer. I excelled at these sports as I only had to rely upon myself. I had no performance anxiety although Satan did get a hold of me on one of my last climbs in the Seneca Rocks of West Virginia. I got to the top and there was an off camber under hang that I had to negotiate to make the summit. Think about climbing on a sloped ceiling with 300 feet of free air below you. I was about to round the corner and I froze in fear. I had nothing to be afraid of but my hands would not move. They started to sweat and sweat is like grease on a rock. This caused me more fear and I was in the middle of an anxiety attack at the top of a mountain. Our guide had to talk me up the rock hand by hand, foot by foot. The attack was successful and it showed me that even something with which I was confident had a weakness. There was no spiritual source I could rely upon.

I went through a few rejections from girls and friends in general. After a few humiliations, it got to the point that I would get around a group of people and start to have an anxiety attack. I would get all sweaty and my head would start to swim. The only thing I could do to recover was to leave the situation. My biggest anxiety was passing out. I would pass out from having blood drawn. I would pass out having any kind of needle pushed into me. I once passed out watching a television show about the emergency room. If I saw blood, I was on the ground. I was just starting to get control of this through sheer willpower before my deliverance.

As I entered into high school, I did what many traumatized and rejected teenagers do with no spiritual source. I turned to drugs. I started smoking cigarettes and surprisingly my parents did not like it but they did not impose any sanctions to get me to quit. This led to chewing tobacco and the erosion of my gums. This in turn led me to smoking pot, eating mushrooms, cocaine, and tripping acid. I eventually settled on my favorites: pot and mushrooms. They seemed the most natural and if it comes from the dirt, it canít hurt, right? My motto at this point was written on the underside of my ball cap: ďIf at first you donít succeed, reject the world and smoke some weed.Ē

I ended up stealing from my parents to feed this growing habit. I had a key to their lighting store and the cash register. I would go in at night and take twenty and forty dollars at a time. I had no idea what the financial repercussions would be or that my mother covered for me. It was never discussed until years later, and even then, I only got one sentence from my father when I asked why they had closed down and moved to a different area. ďWe closed because somebody had a key to the register.Ē he told me. The reality of my actions did not hit me until years later when all was said and done.

My family was dysfunctional when it came to feelings. We never talked about feelings nor did we ever address the root of a problem that someone was experiencing. We merely buried things and moved on. I think we just accepted that we were victims of circumstance. The reality was that Satan had a whole crew working overtime on us. I feel like my parentís craved success and social recognition so much that they ignored some of the issues that my sister and I were struggling to deal with. I had a brief conversation about sex with my father and all he said was to never look lustfully at your mother and sister. Even though the thought had never occurred to me, I said, ďOk.Ē We never talked about drugs or any number of other things that I was being exposed to. I was never told that television and movies were not real. I think that at an early age I thought Big Bird from Sesame Street was real.

My mother initially tried to take me and my sister to church when we were young, but my father refused to go and I had no spiritual leader in the household to follow as an example. As soon as I was old enough, I fought and resisted church until my mother let me stay home. I read my Bible and attended Young Life as I got older. This turned into a charade of mixed messages and a chance to stay out late on a school night and smoke cigarettes.

Itís not realistic to think I can cover all my traumas here in this testimony. As these unending traumas and sins lay in my subconscious, thoughts were being shot into my head. Thoughts that I knew were not my own. I knew they were not my own because as soon as I had received them, I would ask myself, ďNow why would I think that?Ē

These were suicidal thoughts, thoughts about hurting or killing other people. Thoughts of stealing. Thoughts of vandalism. I would have these fantasies playing out in my head. Hypothetical nonsensical situations that read like a science fiction novel. I spent so much time in these fantasies that turning to video games was as natural as breathing except I could interact and make decisions that had a real impact.

I was easily distracted from reading almost anything at this point. I would be mid sentence and some storyline would start playing out in my head. I would ignore it and keep reading but have no idea what I just read. I would have to read everything again and again and it would take hours to get through a few pages and actually remember what I had read. This held true unless I was reading a non-fiction novel. Then the fantasy unfolding before my eyes was apparently enough. I think this also spun into my constantly lusting after women. I was never into porn as the stories in my head were plenty. I could not help but stare at women anytime they came within sight. This severely impacted my first marriage. I did not want anything to do with my wife sexually because she had rejected me by denying me affection and our marriage fell apart.

Things were different after I met Laura. She loved me and gave me the affection I had always needed to be a man. I was done with masturbation after our New Age phase and turned back to Christ. I was done with the shame of it and tired of the ritualized process it had become. It had taken on a life of its own and I saw it for what it was Ė sin. This was actually the first step in my turning away from sin as a whole. Even so, I still had the lustful eye in public. I could not help but look at the strange women even though I wanted nothing to do with them.

I did not understand that it was the demons in these women that were in fact lusting after me. I was playing right into their hands by looking. This was still a challenge after deliverance. The challenge was not to stop looking but to understand that I had to be able to look around in my environment. I could not function if I had to turn away every time I saw a woman. I learned through Pastor Johnís ministering that I was being tricked into thinking I had sinned when I had done nothing of the sort by just seeing these things. I did not clothe these women and therefore did not have to accept their appearance. In fact, I rebuke the demons when I see a woman filled with lust. The irony is that some of these women put on these racy clothes and then become self-conscious and try to cover up. They get uncomfortable when a man gives them attention and stares. Itís like the Holy Spirit is talking to them and they arenít listening. They are in just as much bondage as I once was!

My deliverance started off with an in-depth interview of my past, as well as family history and a list of traumas from my life. Then there was a list of known soul ties. All this information was compiled into a deliverance document and took about 4-5 hours. The next session consisted of going through individual curses and asking God to forgive me. I would repent and renounce the practice of the item. Then I asked God to heal the traumas to my soul. Then I asked for the ungodly soul ties to be broken and my soul fragments to be returned. All of this was done in the mighty name of Jesus. Lastly, it was time to forgive everyone that had hurt me, including myself, and ask God to forgive me for all the people I had in turn hurt.

The final part was the casting out of demons. I spent my time in silent prayer while they were verbally cast out and sent to prison in Jesusí Holy name. There were two other people present as the deliverance is done by a team. During the process I had some interesting thoughts come in my head as the demons struggled. They tried to trick me into rebuking Jesus and it was all I could do to pray and acknowledge that I loved Him and asked to be forgiven. I had a mocking spirit in me that made me laugh out loud a few times and smile like some crazed lunatic. This really made me upset as I had no control over this. I repented as strongly as I could and then all of a sudden it was over.

Pastor John and his wife Aina, along with my wife, then prayed over me to bless me and ask that I be filled with the Holy Spirit. As they left me to reflect and pray silently for a few minutes, I noticed how absolutely quiet it was. There was no background chatter in my head. There were absolutely no thoughts that did not originate from within myself. I could not believe it and the smile on my face was ear to ear. I had once been told in an English class that it is impossible to have a blank thought; that it is impossible to think of nothing. Now I know why! Laura and I noticed how clear our eyes have become. They are absolutely glowing. 

I was baptized in water the following day. I feel the Holy Spirit come strongly upon me as I pray now. It feels so good and wonderful. I will do anything I can in the future to avoid sin and keep my deliverance. We have eliminated every secular influence in our lives at this point. We donít have any secular music and only watch documentary type television/movies. I donít read secular fiction books anymore and we are trying to follow all of Godís commandments. This last bit is the true way to hold oneís deliverance. The first day or two after my deliverance felt strange in public as I was looking at the world through new eyes. The fog has been lifted.

I am so thankful to Shannon Davis for providing a platform for us to have been exposed to Pastor Johnís teachings. I pray that others will be able to connect with this ministry and gain freedom from oppression through Christ Jesus.

ďAnd Jesus returned in the power of the Spirit into Galilee: and there went out a fame of him through all the region round about. And he taught in their synagogues, being glorified of all.

ďAnd he came to Nazareth, where he had been brought up: and, as his custom was, he went into the synagogue on the sabbath day, and stood up for to read. And there was delivered unto him the book of the prophet Esaias. And when he had opened the book, he found the place where it was written,

The Spirit of the Lord is upon me, because he hath anointed me to preach the gospel to the poor; he hath sent me to heal the brokenhearted, to preach deliverance to the captives, and recovering of sight to the blind, to set at liberty them that are bruised, To preach the acceptable year of the Lord. And he closed the book, and he gave it again to the minister, and sat down. And the eyes of all them that were in the synagogue were fastened on him. And he began to say unto them, This day is this scripture fulfilled in your ears.Ē (Luke 4:14-21)

 

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