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Before you express frustration with me for taking this matter to another level, consider this: we require our eighth grade health teachers to talk about these things in very vivid but positive ways and so it should be okay for those of us contending against our pornified, over-sexualized and increasingly violent culture to speak up too.

You are flat wrong if you, as many have in the last few days, think I am somehow obsessed with the topic. For twenty-five years my work has been to help people who have been used, abused and hurt and at some point it’s okay to stand up and tell the truth.

If you are fishing for an undercurrent motivating me on this matter it is the degradation of women and the exploitation of children by men who have lost control of their lusts.

Let’s start with some common ground, with several things that are self-evident.

1. Violence and sexuality are unbridled in our culture; entertainment, everyday life and relationships.

2. Women are being degraded, children are being robbed of their innocence.

3. There is enough blame to go around. It’s not just those homosexuals. Heterosexuals and Christians are just as bad.

4. No matter the politicized American Psychological Association has rewritten the DSM-5 (Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Illness) to say what we once said was not good, is now good — regardless… good remains good, and bad remains bad.

The context for this post is a bit of a far-reaching firestorm I got myself into this week with comments relating to gay sex. A gay couple in our state got married in another state and it was front and center news all week about their intent to legally challenge our state’s Constitutional Marriage Amendment. As an elected official I waited a bit, noticed no one else saying a thing, so I wrote a letter to our state’s medical and psychological communities asking them to weigh in.

It is my opinion that like with global warming, a) the science is not settled on any of this that b) there are medical people who feel intimidated and silenced to say anything negative about degrading and destructive perversions of what is self-evident biology and nature.

Within the backlash were many who made the point – Hickey… you are aware heterosexuals practice anal sex too? Certainly, I am aware of that and retort… and what do doctors say about it?

My article here is on my church blog and relates primarily to Christian couples and deviant sex practices. Frankly, we need to look closer at how we can “feel bad” about women being sex trafficked, yet view a guy like me as a bit of a prude for saying men need to treat women with respect, love, and quit with the porn and perversions. Over the years I have come to believe that sodomy and anal sex degrade women and in dynamic ways mix these two unbridled beasts in our culture, sex and violence. Self-respecting women can and should say, No way, buddy. 

The Bible says, “keep the marriage be pure or undefiled” (Hebrews 13:4).  We traditionally interpret that to mean we should not fornicate before marriage or commit adultery after the wedding day. It means that and it means more. Defilements, both spiritual and physical defilements are a big topic in the Bible.

The Bible says, paraphrasing, don’t take a crap inside the camp. Nothing impure should defile the camp of the people of God. The King James Version (humorously, I think) phrases it this way:

Thou shalt have a place also without the camp, whither thou shalt go forth abroad: And thou shalt have a paddle upon thy weapon; and it shall be, when thou wilt ease thyself abroad, thou shalt dig therewith, and shalt turn back and cover that which cometh from thee. (Deuteronomy 23:12-13)

By any science, health, and religious standard, human excrement is a defilement. The Church in third-world countries teaches these basic Deuteronomic societal health practices to people living in filth. Yet, is it the case our marriage beds here are defiled?

The marriage bed is a place of purity and innocence, love and affection, intimacy and enjoyment. Do I really need to spell this out anymore? Deviant and degrading sexual behaviors have no place in the Christian marriage bed.

For sure there are a myriad of positions and couples can talk though what’s degrading to them or whether sodomy is a subtle or even overt form of abusive submission. It may not be for some couples. For others intimacy is lost when one is pushed down or when one person faces away. In any case, I submit Christian couples need to keep the marriage bed pure and undefiled.

Never before have I been so forthright in such a public manner. You’ll be hard-pressed to find any other example of me talking forthrightly about sex. However, please spare me the faux-shock and outrage that has come in the backlash this week; mainly from those who bring us the shock-value Pride Parades pushing obscenities and vulgarities down our Main Streets in full view of our impressionable elementary kids.

[Sorry, I have turned the comments off on this post because I can’t keep up with the obscene ones that need deleting.]

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Last week I was excited to get an advance copy of a new book written by my friends Randy and Kelsey Bohlender, The Spirit of Adoption: Winning the Battle for the Children.  The book is now in and can be ordered here.  A group study guide is in the works.

Randy and Kelsey have shared the adoption message a couple times in our church and each time they’ve come, people adopt more children, and people give lots of money for others to adopt more children. Kristen and I are delighted to see that they have taken the time to put, in book form, the anointing they walk in so strongly… the Spirit of Adoption.  They make the case that, as the positive alternative to abortion, “adoption is the next frontier for those who call themselves pro-life.” As a couple who has devoted years to contending for the plight of the unborn, the Bohlender’s have noticed… “while the church has been highly vocal in it’s opposition to abortion, it has largely failed to think about what it means if we get our way.”

If we overturned Roe v. Wade tomorrow, what would happen to those 4500 babies born each day?

The Bohlender’s are asking, will “the Church step up to the task of caring for the orphan, the cast off ones, the unwanted…. the harder question was would we?”  When Kristen and I first met Randy and Kelsey a few years ago, God did something in my heart… I had to repent of my increasingly frequent empty nest fantasies. (We have two kids lefts at home, a junior and a senior in high school.) Kristen and I enrolled in foster parenting that next fall and took an unwed mom and new baby into our home. I’m sure that’s just the beginning.

Lou Engle’s zeal for LIFE oozes in the foreword he wrote for this book.  He sets the book in the broader context of what God is doing raising up a new army of rescuers. He comments on how the Bohlender’s own adoption story is “off the charts.” That story is woven throughout the book and if you haven’t heard it yet it alone is worth the price of the book.

The Spirit of Adoption is a crash course in one of the central burdens God is laying on the church in this hour. The Bohlender’s make the case Biblically that the nearer we get to the end of the age – wars, earthquakes, and judgments that kill masses of people – “this will lead to a huge number of orphans wandering the face of the earth, looking for a home.”

Equally sobering are the chapters where the Bohlender’s alert us to the others that are vying for the unwanted children of the world – the sex trade and the homosexual community. The mandate of God for the church to step up to the plate comes through loud and clear in these pages. There is an open challenge here for lawyers, social workers, doctors, and others to join forces to make adoptions happen. The reality of the high cost of adoption, and not just the financial cost, is addressed.

And, those of you who still have no true grasp of the fact that YOU are adopted into God’s family will see that matter is settled in this book – the Great Finalization… “for you did not receive the spirit of bondage again to fear, but you received the Spirit of adoption by whom we cry out, ‘Abba, Father.'” (Romans 8:14-15)

Randy blogs here and has a recent post on adoption here.  He and Kelsey founded the Zoe Foundation which promotes adoption as a positive alternative to abortion.  They have seven kids (3 adopted) and are intercessory missionaries at the International House of Prayer in Kansas City.

Can you imagine… I wouldn’t let my three teenagers go see the most recent Batman movie because I’m convinced the spirit of death was/does operate in it.  Lead actor Heath Ledger died of an accidental overdose of sleeping and anxiety meds during the filming of it and confessed the weeks before to struggling with insomnia since the filming began and that the movie “messed with his head.” His friends noted something came on him during the filming because he just looked different, drained.   

One of the spiritual gifts listed in the New Testament is the discernment of spirits. If you are wondering how I can conclusively say the spirit of death was operating in the movie Batman all I can tell you is I discerned the spirit and, coupled with my experience in deliverance ministry, coupled with police chaplaincy, my own personal testimony with the occult, and I’m telling you this isn’t the Batman of twenty-five years ago.

Go ahead and chuckle at me – but most of you haven’t been to the number of teen suicides I’ve been to in the last twenty years. I look at what’s on their walls when I walk in to see them hanging by their neck in the doorway. I’m not saying your kid will go kill himself if he sees Batman, I’m saying demonic spirits have full access to our kids today through media and entertainment venues and parents are clueless.

twilight-2And here, though I’ve not personally seen it, I’m going to urge you to keep your kids away from a hugely popular movie and book series – Twilight. I have only seen the preview and that was enough for me to shut the gate in terms of allowing this teen craze into my household.

My 14 year old daughter reports to me Twilight has fully captivated her high school peers. I got online and watched the trailer and learned it’s an action-packed, modern-day love story between a teenage girl and a vampire (a vampire is a corpse that returns from the grave to terrorize and drink the blood of the living – the idea that there is a good one out there, one who is lovable is dangerous fantasy and deception at its peak). 

The Twilight Saga is a Gateway drug –  lowering inhibitions and desensitizing.  It creates a fantasy world where girls experience Edward’s advances vicariously within their own imaginations – writes a Catholic blogger who has written extensively on this series. The movie and books are targeted to adolescent girls.  350 different fan websites are now on the internet averaging 31 female fans for every male. The demonic is after our daughters. It’s a part of the devil’s ancient war on women.

Parents need to be careful to not expose their daughters to the darkness that strategically emminates from this movie. One parent/Catholic school teacher reacted this way…

I agree, this is a female mass intoxication with disturbing implications. The book, which I finished yesterday, is hypnotic and addictive. The mixture of sexual stimulation and bloodletting/violence is sickening, yet despite having such strong misgivings, I did find myself anxious to read the book again. ..to see what happens.

Take a good look at the picture  above and see if you can’t figure out a few reasons why I don’t want my daughter imagining herself in the arms of that spirit. I don’t want my daughter running around joking with guys quoting this movie – bite me, I want you to bite me.  Or how about this…

What would you say if your high school aged daughter told you she was dating a vampire who had to fight the urge to kill her and suck her blood every time they were together?  And you thought dating a football player was bad enough!  If you were a sensible parent you would intervene and end the relationship, fearing that it might end in tragedy.  In fact, you would have an obligation to protect your daughter from the danger she was unwilling to recognize.  Your love for her would compel you.  So, what would you say if I told you your high school age daughter really is dating a vampire, vicariously, by reading The Twilight Saga?  Oh come on – you might think – it’s not the same thing at all.  The story is just a fantasy.  What’s the big deal?  Nobody is really getting hurt here.  Or are they?

Do you think I’m over-reacting? Here’s the deal, we do deliverance ministry week in and week out here at our church. These seemingly minor things – like movies, books, posters, charms – are welcome mats to the unseen evil world. We have discovered all it takes is one willful glance at soft core porn to release powerful demonic spirits of lust and perversion into seemingly strong men. Within months, good dads start walking around like zombies fully captive and bound to their perversion. Families are destroyed.

I discern the same demonic, blood-drinking spirit in Twilight that I battle against in the abortion industry – a demonic spirit that targets our daughters to drink the fresh blood of the emerging generation that bears the image of God.

Evil has a world-class marketing department and they are masters at packaging stuff to touch deep needs in the human heart. And there is no sector of our society more receptive and vulnerable than adolescent girls. Wake up parents! My wife was a middle school teacher and for years she kept current on the literature marketed to adolescent girls today. She regularly commented to me it’s far worse than parents realize in terms of sexuality and sorcery.

Some will say I’m sheltering my kids too much. Thanks for your concern but my kids have been in public schools and I’m pretty sure they aren’t in for much culture shock when they enter the “real world.” But hello? Isn’t my role inherently a sheltering role? I will continue to stand in prayer and in practice between my daughter and the demonic.

Here is a link to some other critical reviews of Twilight. Though a couple of my favorite Christian and pro-life bloggers are loving the Twilight series I do not share their enthusiasm.

I’ll end on a bright note. Youth today are wide open to the reality of the spiritual world. Between Christmas and New Years again this year our family will head to Kansas City for the annual OneThing Conference. It’s with great joy I report my three can’t wait to dive into the Book of Revelation which is to be the main focus of Biblical exposition this year at OneThing. This same God-given curiousity that the darkside is exploiting in movies like Twilight can been seen at One Thing as 30,000 young people pursue the One who is love and fully supernatural.

The answer to the question – can God heal Fibromyalgia? – is YES! The Bible says, he forgives all our sins and heals ALL our diseases! (Psalm 103:3) There isn’t one disease or diagnosis that is beyond his ability or desire to heal today. I hope that is a hopeful truth for somebody who is hurting right now.

I’m led to post on this topic today because people very close to me, whom I love dearly, are getting pummeled by Fibromyalgia. We have seen God physically heal people here at Church at the Gate in numbers into the three digits. However, we have only seen what I’d call temporary relief as we pray for healing from Fibromyalgia so far. Also, I’m hearing Fibromyalgia being regularly called out through the Word of Knowledge in healing and revival meetings throughout America – I do believe the Great Physician is giving great and full victory to many people from this devasting infirmity. I have more many more questions than answers – so pardon my ignorance – is this only an American malady? I’ve seen/heard nothing of it in the healing meetings I’ve attended overseas. I want to hear from those of you who have been freed of Fibromyalgia where ever you are.

If you, or anyone you know has been healed by God from Fibromyalgia, please share your story here in the comment section of this post. The Bible says we overcome by the blood of the Lamb and the WORD OF OUR TESTIMONY. If you have been healed of Fibromyalgia, please share your testimony for the benefit of others here. If you have experienced any victory from Fibromyalgia through Christian healing prayer, please share that here. If you know of someone who has been supernaturally healed of Fibromyalgia, encourage them to share their testimony here.

Our local newspaper today did a brief story on “Mysterious Fibromyalgia.” (The link is to the original article in the Jackson Clarion Ledger.) The subheading is “Chronic pain brings on insomnia, depression, loss of brain activity and IS INCURABLE.” The last two words paint a hopeless picture. Here’s the opening paragraph of the artcle…

Imagine hurting all over, every day, with a physical exhaustion that never completely subsides, not even with adequate sleep and rest. Add insomnia, brain fog, and depression. The worst part – there’s no cure. Sufferers of fibromyalgia don’t have to imagine that nightmare. They live it. Daily.

The article gives these facts… according to the National Fibromyalgia Association, 3-6% of the population suffers from it. Women are most affected by it. And, there are physicians that don’t believe the disease even exists.

I’ve spoken recently with some of our doctors and it’s a mixed bag – some think it’s a “catch all” diagnosis for something that no one can really explain. One said she never saw these symtoms twenty years ago and now she sees them every day in her office. Others say “its real” and relief can be found in various treatments – acupuncture, chiropractic care, osteopathy, pain meds, etc. but that there is no cure or any real understanding of root causes. I’ve spoken to some of our counselors and mental health people about it – some say they have found it relates to previous trauma or (sexual) abuse. Some of my friends in healing and deliverance ministry also say this is the case, and this is how a demonic spirit of infirmity first gains access – through some trauma or abuse. I was given a Gulf War Vet newsletter minutes ago that says the United States military now lists Fibromyalgia at the top of the list of Post-traumatic Stress Disorder manifestations.

I am no expert, nor am I a doctor. Those of you reading this who suffer from Fibromyagia know light years more about this than I. If you are struggling with Fibromyalgia, I hope you’ll join the conversation here and dialog with others who comment here about their victory. I do welcome you to comment about your journey into supernatural healing and even mentioning how people have prayed for you in not-very-helpful-ways (as long as you stay positive about it). I think there is something to learn from unsuccessful well-intentioned attempts at divine healing.

I seek no controversial debate or attack here, nor do I want to lay a lack-of-faith guilt-trip on those who honestly and desperately desire a touch from God. I have a pastoral heart and desire to see God touch peoples lives. I’ve seen him do amazing things and I know he loves people. I’m throwing this post out there to solicit comments from people who’ve seen God heal Fibromyalgia. The most valuable thing about this post is not in what I have to say, it will be in what these folks share. In fact, I probably won’t offer much in the comments section because again, I’m not an expert and have little more to say. I would welcome comments from people in healing and deliverance ministries who have insights into how to pray for healing for people suffering from Fibromyalgia and more importantly, what are the spiritual dynamics behind this infirmity. The article I quoted above said there is some thought that this is genetic. But even there, I don’t want this to be a medical discussion. I’m asking for testimonies of how God healed people of Fibromyalgia and graceful dialog about the spiritual realities here. I’m hoping hope comes forth.

Here are just a couple “rules” for this post and commenting. I don’t want to hear anything about turning to Buddhism for relief or anything like TM, yoga, Oprah, or anything other than Jesus and Biblical Christianity. If you suggest anything else is our hope, I’ll delete that comment immediately. Jesus is our only hope. If you are among those who’ve given up hope concluding Fibromyalgia is your “lot in life” I’d rather you not share that here either. If you think it’s God’s Will that you are sick, I’d rather that get discussed elsewhere also. Not here. Really, if we are unsure it’s God’s Will we have relief from Fibromyagia we better sort that out before we even go to a doctor seeking relief. With that thinking, taking meds would go against what God wants for you. I don’t like to debate if healing is God’s will and don’t want to open that can of worms here. I just want to pray for the sick and let God be God. I want to hear testimonies of the grace of God. I do know God uses suffering and that there are redemptive purposes for pain but I also know one of the reasons God allows sickness is to reveal himself as Healer.

My sole purpose and hope in bringing this up is to provide a place where one beggar can share with another beggar where they found bread. I’m not the baker. But I know the answer is in the one who multiplies the loaves.

A month or so ago Brenda David submitted a guest post here on the plight of Chinese girls like Xia Fen – you can read her story here and how she jumped several stories to escape the sex trade and ended up in a wheelchair.

chinese-girl.jpg

This is a follow up to her story written by one of her doctors.

With the prayer and support from many friends, Xia Fen is beginning her new life leading to independence and dignity. On March 8th, my friend Dr. L.R. came from [location] to bring Xia Fen for her rehab therapy there…. Dr. L.R. got to know Xia Fen’s situation through our newsletter and immediately offered to help her. He decided to bring Xia Fen to [location] for a FREE rehab therapy. He believes that it would be the first step for her independent living… We went together to the village where Xia Fen is living with her sister’s family. In the small shabby room, we saw Xia Fen in her bed. It seems that she was still in the shock of the incident and in deep sorrow though she was eager a new life. The miserable life deprive of her dreams as many young girls have. After a brief check-up and evaluation, Dr. L.R. was confident that Xia Fen could have a much better life after the therapy and some trainings following it…. From the pictures I got recently, I know Xia Fen is doing well in [location]. Dr. L.R. gave her a better wheelchair to meet her need, and help her start a systemic rehab therapy plan. Xia Fen is having new friends there and smiles coming back to her face. With the love and help of so many people, she is not only rehabilitating physically, but psychologically and even spiritually, for she really could see some HOPE for her broken life now.

Keep praying!

brenda.jpg
GUEST BLOG POST:
I’ve asked CATG’r Brenda David to share the testimony of a young Chinese girl she and Phil are helping through the Luke Society. Phil is the international ministry coordinator of the Luke Society which offices here in Sioux Falls. Brenda is the Luke’s Society’s prayer coordinator. The Luke Society is an interdenominational organization of Christian health and business professionals dedicated to medical missions. They support indigenous Christian health professionals who have a vision to reach their own people. My comments resume after the pictures below. SH

CHINA DOLL BROKEN BY THE SEX TRADE
Xia Fen is a 21 year old girl in Anshan, China, who was raised by her grandparents since she was five. She was a bright and diligent student with big dreams but sadly had to give up her education because of her family’s poverty. Her grandfather died leaving her with a grandmother too old and feeble to care for her. At 21, it was her now her turn to take care of the family. She decided in Aug. 2007 to go to Hai Chen, a larger city nearby, to find a job. She soon met a “kind” young man, seemingly out of nowhere, who approached her and who began courting her. He was full of charm and promised her the world. He assured her he’d help her find a good-paying job in another city. She was naive and believed him and went with him to Gai Zhou. And there her new “job” began.

She was taken to a hotel and locked in the room. Just like all the other stories you’ve heard, Xia was abused over and over again and until she was “broken.” Then she was forced to provide sexual service to the hotel clients. She screamed, cried, struggled and resisted….but to no avail. She was devastated with the reality that she had been kidnapped and was no a prisoner. After days of staring at the hotel window, she decided it was her only escape. She finally got up the nerve and jumped out of the window which was several stories from the ground. Four hours later, she was found unconscious and taken to a hospital. It was too late for surgery to repair her spinal cord. She had no money, no insurance, and no hope….and now no use of her legs. She had escaped the sex trade, but sacrificed her legs to do it. She had to find a way to survive. She went to live with her sister – also struggling in poverty – who could only provide the her barest of necessities.

A friend who helps provide wheelchairs contacted Luke Society’s Dr. Xu Zhang who went to visit her. His heart broke for her as he found her teary-eyed in a cold and bare room – depressed and dependant on others for everything. Dr. Xu, himself a Chinese surgeon turned China’s version of Joni Earekson Tada, made sure she was examined again by orthopedic specialists, but they were told it’s just too late. She would have to learn to live with her condition. She was provided a wheelchair through Dr. Xu’s Bethesda Rehabilitation Clinic along with a copy of Joni Eareckson Tada’s book. Xu and his team are committed to help her gain some independence and meaning in her life. She’s beginning to smile again. And she’s discovered she has a talent for embroidery which she hopes will bring her some income. She doesn’t want to be a burden on others.

Pray for Xia’s salvation, and that God will heal her heart and help her find purpose in living. ………No that’s way too small….pray for a miracle of early-church apostolic proportions. We’ve been promised the lame will walk and the blind will see and the deaf will hear. This beautiful China doll has been broken in every way. Let her walk again, God! Xia is one of my intercessory assignments. I feel a responsibility in praying her into wholeness. Will you lift up a prayer for her? BD

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SH: In countries like China where girls are not wanted and have been aborted, abused, abandoned now for decades, we are seeing the emerging epidemic of the global sex trafficking. Wait, I thought Planned Parenthood was on the side of women?? No!! They are THE leading organization worldwide exploiting and exterminating women. In a 1997 report, the World Health Organization estimated that more than 50 million Chinese women were “missing” from the current female population. According to euthanasia.com, the lopsided male-female ratio in China caused by sex-selection abortions is worsening, pushed up to 120 men for every 100 women. Pre-birth sex selection and female infanticide in China has resulted in a population distortion and imbalance leaving 111 million men in China – more than three times the population of Canada – who will not be able to find a wife.

I yanked this paragraph from a Concerned Women of America article; “China is a major destination country for sex trafficking because of the shortage of marriageable women there. Pakistan and Afghanistan have significant numbers of sex-selection abortions, but the problem is not yet having the impact that it is having in China and India. In addition to sex trafficking, there is a rise in bride trafficking — Korean men, for instance, are finding brides in Vietnam.” Women are trafficked from North Korea, Burma and Vietnam and sold to the highest bidder.

Granted some girl babies have been adopted internationally, but it’s estimated that a million or so “orphaned” girls are consigned to state institutions so abysmal that one documentary film referred to them as “dying rooms”.

Imagine a woman getting beaten by her husband just moments after she gives birth to a girl, being thrown out in the cold and told not to come home with the baby. She abandons the infant girl at a police station and it goes to an orphanage. This happens in shocking numbers in China today. Our silence creates a veil over this thing and we become complicit in it.  Will there be silence even now in the comment link above?

I like to make up words. That’s no surprise to anyone around here. Made one up last weekend… “unmuzzleable.” That’s how we ought to be! It means you can’t shut us up… let justice roll on like a river, righteousness like a never-failing stream!

Moments ago I made up another word while reading my friend Dino Rizzo’s recent blog post on what is happening among the women of his church. Sounds like every Monday night down there is Chick Night and the Healing Place Church women have reached the point of unstoppability (another new word… now I’m on a roll!). POP! Into my head comes this new word… womentum! It’s momentum on estrogen! It’s when the sisters plow past the brothers in pursuit of the things of God. The serpent doesn’t stand a chance against her heels. In my head right this minute I hear Esther from Sanford & Son saying, “whaatchit sucker!” Even her name is prophetic – Esther!

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