haiti_map

“A Gentile woman who lived there came to him, pleading, ‘Have mercy on me, O Lord, Son of David! For my daughter is possessed by a demon that torments her severely.’” Matthew 15:22 NLT

I was recently invited to speak at a men’s conference designed to encourage those dedicated to serving in church leadership. There were about two hundred in attendance from two states and about fifty churches. It was a great honor. I was one of only two speakers on the program of this all-day event. I spent the first session sharing the exciting things I found in the Bible about heaven, which led to my first book, “My Search for the Real Heaven,” and the second on thoughts from my newest release, “ My Search for Prayers Satan Hates.”

In all my travels I have never charged anyone a speaking fee. Don’t get me wrong—I don’t turn down money. I have bills like everyone else. But I have never charged, and I never know when I accept an invitation to come speak whether they are going to pay me or not, or even whether they will help with expenses. I just made the decision long ago to simply trust that God will take care of that stuff. I just ask if I can set up a table with my resource materials in the back and make them available to anyone interested. It always seems to work out. It’s all about faith, right?

It was no different at this event. I had a small table set up in the foyer, and went there to greet folks after I was finished. I love people, and was busy meeting many of them in the lobby when a tall, shy-acting man slipped up quietly and stood patiently nearby. When I had a short break he slipped up and introduced himself, asking to speak privately when the event was over. I readily agreed, and instructed him to hang around so we could be alone for a visit. He did.

“I need to tell you about my daughter,” he began. “We have three children that we home school, and she is the oldest. She is ten years old now, but she was only seven when her personality suddenly changed—for the worse. She started saying things that were mean, ugly, even sinister. She might say to her brother, ‘I’m going to take a knife and cut you,’ and to her sister, ‘I’m going to burn you.’ She even said, “I’m going to kill you.” We were all shocked since she had never talked like that. And where were these evil ideas coming from? We home school!”

“We sat her down and began to question her,” he continued. “It took time, patience, and focused questioning, but she finally said something about those words coming from ‘Legba.’ Who is ‘Legba,’ we asked, and she finally explained that Legba was the one who came and sat at the foot of her bed every night, watching her while she slept. Obviously, we were shocked and terrified to hear this. It was demonic. We didn’t know who to tell—or much less—what to do. Would people think we were crazy?”

They were desperate. And they felt infinitely unqualified to remedy the situation. They finally decided to share the problem with their minister. He was very kind and understanding, and had just read my book on demons, prayer, and spiritual warfare, “My Search for Prayers Satan Hates.” So they laid hands on the girl and prayed about this whole situation.

“Things definitely got better,” he told me. That had been three years ago when the little girl was about seven. “But there still times we have been worried.”

“How are things now,” I asked. “OK,” he said, but there are still problems, and it seems to have been getting a little worse lately. I love your idea of staking out the property with tent stakes covered in Bible verses, but I don’t have any money to buy them.”

“Here,” I said handing him a set, “they are free to you. Let me know how it goes.”

He thanked me and we parted.

The next morning after I spoke in a Bible class and in their worship service I met his wife and the little girl. The girl came up while her mother and I were talking and rudely interrupted with some petty complaint. Her mother—in a rather irritated fashion—reminded her that she was the mom and that she was busy talking. The girl obeyed, but was obviously angry about something.

I thought a lot about this girl and Legba on my return home. Children are innocent. Children trust. And children are inquisitive. I wondered what the girl thought when she saw someone (or something) at the foot of her bed the first time. How do children usually respond? She might sit up and say, “What’s your name?” And she probably did. And how might the demons respond in an effort to gain her trust? “My name is Legba, what’s your name?”

I went on home Sunday afternoon, and went to bed early after such an eventful weekend. I was very tired.

But I awoke suddenly in the middle of the night and sat up in bed. I had been dreaming and realized that I needed to call the little girl’s father and get him to ask her three questions. I didn’t hear an audible voice, and I wasn’t at all afraid. I can’t explain it. I just knew I had to get him to do that.

The one other time this had happened in my life I had been praying about how to put my heaven book together, deciding on the chapter titles and the order the information should be presented in. I felt completely unqualified to organize and write a book, so I prayed for God to help me get things in the right order. One night at three in the morning I woke up. It was like I was listening to a recording of a long list of very specific things. I listened, it finished, and I started to doze off. It started over. I listened again, it finished again, and I started to doze again. When it began the third time, I realized I needed to get up and write it down. It was a list of the titles of the chapters and the order I needed to put them.

I realized in this case that I needed to call the man the next day and get him to ask his daughter three specific questions. But I was very sleepy and very tired from the weekend trip, so, although I had never done this before, I said, “Lord, I’m really tired. I promise I’ll do this tomorrow if you will just remind me, OK?” Looking back, I can’t believe I did that to the Lord of the universe, but I did. I talk to Him now like He’s my best friend. Then I lay back down in the bed and went to sleep.

The next morning when I awoke, I had no memory of the dream. I ate breakfast and went straight to the hospital because a friend was having surgery. I prayed with them and then sat in the waiting room with the family and friends waiting for the report from the doctor. I was there most of the morning, and my friend’s prognosis was excellent. (Prayer still works.)

When I finally sat down at my computer it was about noon. I had no sooner sat down before I remembered my dream and felt a sense of urgency to call the father and get him to ask the girl three questions. I reached for a blank piece of paper and said out loud, “What were the questions?”

I had just gotten my pen and paper ready and uttered those words and the three questions immediately came to me:

1. Did Legba touch her?
2. Did Legba give her anything?
3. Did Legba introduce her to anyone?

I got the father’s number from the minister at his church. It was a little after noon when I dialed their home phone number. He picked up on the first ring.

“I had a dream last night,” I quickly explained. “God gave me three very specific questions you need to ask your daughter. Please get a pen to write them down word for word.” He did, and said they would ask her immediately and call me right back.

Five minutes later my phone rang and it was the dad. “We asked her the questions just as you instructed,” he began. “Legba didn’t ever touch her or give her anything, but when we asked if he introduced to her anyone she said, ‘Yes. All his friends.’”

“That’s not good,” I said, “she’s talking about other demons.”

“That’s not all,” the father continued, “she also said that Legba invited her to go with him to ‘Funland.’”

“What’s ‘Funland,’” we asked.

“I don’t know,” the girl responded, “I never went. But I thought it was something like an amusement park.”

Then we asked her, “Honey, do you remember when the preacher came over and prayed with you about all this?”

“Yes,” she quickly said, “And after that prayer Legba couldn’t talk anymore. He still came and sat at the foot of my bed every night to watch me sleep, but he couldn’t speak.”

“Did he ever leave?,” the dad asked.

“Yes,” answered the girl. “One night I realized that since he couldn’t talk to me anymore he was going to start talking to my little sister in the other bed. That made me mad, so I sat up and said, ‘No. Leave my sister alone. You need to go now.’ And that’s when he finally left.”

Notice that the demon left when the little girl got angry and told him to go.

After hearing this additional information, I knew they needed to ask the girl one more question. “Write this down,” I told the father. “There’s one more question you need to ask her. Be sure to word it exactly as I relate it to you: Is there a magic word or secret way she can always go to Funland?”

“I’ll call you right back,” came the fatherly reply.

Five minutes later he called right back.

“We asked her exactly as you instructed: ‘Is there a magic word or secret way you can always go to Funland?’”

When we asked her this question she looked down at the floor for a very long time. We waited patiently, giving her space, but determined to get the answer. Finally she looked up and said with fear on her face, “Yes, Daddy, but I’m not allowed to tell you.”

Why would a 10-year-old girl tell her own parents she was “Not allowed” to tell them something. I realized immediately that the demon had threatened her in some specific way. He instructed her that it was a well-guarded secret and that if she revealed it he would do something harmful to her, her sister, or her family. It was the only thing that made sense.

Somewhere in this discussion the father let me know that the girl had become interested in being baptized.

“Good,” I said. “Tell her you can’t be baptized and hold one hand up out of the water. It’s all or nothing with God. If you don’t get this out of her now, it could haunt her for the rest of her life.”

At last report, their preacher had helped this family by meeting with the little girl and trying to get her to come clean so to speak. Whatever the demon had threatened was causing this girl to hide something from her own parents.

As a follow up note, I shared this story with a pastor I knew well. The next day he texted me the link to a web site dedicated to the worship of Legba. It stated that Legba was a demon in charge of “openings, doorways, communication, and tricks.” It also said he, “Makes things happen in all sorts of humorous, unexpected, impossible sorts of ways.” It informed of his “colors:” “white in Rada and red in Petro.” It invited you to decorate his altar with red and white candles. It went on to describe specific acts of worship to Legba that involved pennies and chicken sacrifices. Let me tell you, folks: evil is real. Very real. And evil is after our children.

Lord, I praise You as the giver of dreams and solver of problems and lover of little of children. Please deliver this girl and her family from evil. Help her family and support group have the right things to say at the right moment so this won’t haunt her the rest of her life. In Jesus’ Name, Amen.

Bible-Based Thoughts Based On This Event:
Demons can invade a Christian’s own home.
Demons can sometimes target innocent children.
Demons can communicate with innocent children.
Demons can use threats to control innocent children.
Demons strategize, leaving a way allowing their return.
Innocent children can effectively command a demon to leave.
Demons can have their communication bound through prayer.

“What Are The Stakes?” by Steve Hemphill – Pages 127 – 136

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I was speaking to a non-denominational church in Oklahoma. I taught on spiritual warfare and the Spiritual Warfare Stakes.

During my lesson, I noticed an older woman (perhaps in her 70s) softly crying on the second row. There were tears running down her cheeks.

I expressed to the group that I was uncomfortable sharing these stories, since they didn’t jive well with my very conservative background. I’m the LAST guy they should be hearing miracle stories from.

After the lesson, this lady came straight up to me.

“Thank you for having the courage to share this,” she began. “This is real. The enemy is real. Over 40 years ago, when my son was only 11, he started having night terrors, bad dreams, or demonic dreams, whatever you want to call them. They went on for weeks. It was at the same time every night. The procedure was the exact same every single night. He would wake up at the exact same time on the clock screaming and crying out for me. I would jump up, run to his room, scoop him into my arms, and–though he was already 11 years old and his feet almost drug the floor, I would rock him and softly sing church music.”

This reminded me immediately of Saul’s harassment from evil spirits. When they would come on him, David would be called to come and sing praise songs–some of the psalms–until the evil spirits departed.

“When the evil spirit from God troubled Saul, David would take his harp and play. Then the evil spirit would leave him, and Saul would feel better.” 1 Samuel 16:23 NCV

“Once my son settled down and began to relax in my arms,” the woman continued, “I would take him back to his bed to tuck him in, and then return to my bed.”

“This went on for weeks, and he began to be afraid to go to sleep. So one night, after I had him settled him down and tucked in, instead of returning to my own bed, I went back to the rocker to pray.”

“Lord,” I began, “We can’t keep this up. Please tell me what to do. …”

“After saying these words,” she said, “I looked up from my rocker and saw a large, black demon with piercing red eyes sitting on our dining table staring right at me, and I immediately knew what to do. I went and got some oil, and I put it on every entrance to our home–every window and every door–praying as I went for the protection I knew we needed from God against the enemy and his forces.”

“My son never had another bad dream.”

Steve Hemphill, author / inspirational speaker
“My Search for the Real Heaven”
(Also Available In Spanish)
“My Search for the Real Heaven Workbook”
“My Search for Prayers Satan Hates”
“What Are The Stakes?” (God Markers On the Land)

Demonic Dreams

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Demonic Nightmares

”When an evil spirit leaves a person, it goes into the desert, seeking rest but finding none.” Matthew 12:43 NLT

Honestly, because of my very conservative Christian background, I went home and thought, “How am I going to write this story and not look weird to all of my friends?”

I got a call one day from a teacher. “Is it true,” she began, “that your next book is about demons and prayer and spiritual warfare?”

‘Yes,” I replied, “Why?”

“Then I’ve got to come talk to you right now,” she continued. “Can I come over?”

“Sure. Come on over.”

When she arrived, you could almost see the fear in her bloodshot eyes. We sat in the living room and her story came spilling out.

She had been on a mission trip with her church to a foreign country. After she returned, she had demonic nightmares. This had never occurred before in her life. They were very real, extremely frightening, and gave her the feeling of being violated in every possible way. She woke up in terrified a cold sweat and remembered every awful detail. Then she was too frightened to go back to sleep. In the low light in her room when she awoke, she could see figures in the darkness—not clearly, but absolutely present and demonic. She couldn’t feel safe in her home anymore, and was exhausted from the lack of sleep. “What should I do?” she demanded.

Much later I discovered that Job 4:13-17 revealed a demonic encounter that was exactly what she had described:

“It came to me in a disturbing vision at night, when people are in a deep sleep. Fear gripped me, and my bones trembled. A spirit swept past my face, and my hair stood on end. The spirit stopped, but I couldn’t see its shape. There was a form before my eyes. In the silence I heard a voice say, ‘Can a mortal be innocent before God? Can anyone be pure before the Creator?’” Job 4:13-17 NLT

Keep in mind that Satan is called the accuser:

“The accuser of our brothers and sisters, who accused them day and night before our God, has been thrown down.” Revelation 12:10

So here we have an “Accusing” by a demonic entity.

I really didn’t know what to suggest, but could feel her desperation, and my mind raced through everything I knew, looking for some tidbit that might help. Without really thinking, I asked, “Did you bring anything back with you?”

She thought for a moment and then answered, “Two things. A brochure about one of the local gods worshipped there, and a letter from a lady I studied the Bible with.”

“What did the letter say,” I inquired.

She hesitated, then answered, “Well,” she began, “It said, ‘Thanks for coming, but Buddha is the true God, Your God is not the true God.”

“OK,” I replied, “I have two suggestions for you if you’re willing.”

“I’ll do anything,” she answered, “At this point, I’m scared to go to sleep.”

“First,” I began, “Burn the brochure about the local god. And, burn the letter from the woman.”

“Second,” I continued, “stake out your place.” Since she lived in an apartment, and didn’t own the property, I encouraged her to stand the stakes in the four most remote corners. She complied. Then she prayed for God to make her home a place of peace, privacy, and safety from all evil in the Name of Jesus Christ.

The nightly episodes of terror abruptly stopped. Problem solved by the Word of God.

Lord thank You for the power of Your word and your promises. Thank You for protecting and providing. Please make my home a place of peace and safety just like You did for her. In Jesus’ Name, Amen.

Bible-Based Thoughts Based On This Event:
Demons can act today just as they did in ancient times.
Demons may attach themselves to literature on demonic gods.
Demons can be persistent, returning to the same place night after night.
Demons may attach to seemingly innocent items that can be given to you.
God’s Word can protect you from continual nocturnal demonic harassment.

Demonic Nightmares Returned

”When an evil spirit comes out of a person, it travels through dry places, looking for a place to rest, but it doesn’t find it. So the spirit says, ‘I will go back to the house I left.’” Matthew 12:43-44 NCV

The most comfortable place for a demonic spirit, I have learned, is the place where it’s already been. A familiar spirit desires greatly to go back where it has been. Which also coincides with the fact that bad habits are hard to break. There’s a definite connection between the human tendency to relapse and the spiritual being to revisit familiar territory and continue to entice you to experience and enjoy evil.

The lady I just described who had experienced her terrifying nightmares coming to an end called me back one day. “The nightmares are back,” she began in a panic. What did I do wrong?”

“Tell me about them,” I inquired. She did, and it was much the same as before. Same verbiage. Same fear. Same panic. The exact same desperation was in her voice. She had lay in her bed with every light on, trembling with panic, waiting for morning to dawn so she could call me and ask what to do.

My first thought found voice: “Did you have any visitors in your home yesterday?” I asked.

There was a moment of silence—like it hadn’t dawned on her that another human could bring a demon into her personal, protected territory.

“Yes,” she said very softly; as if the event was replaying in her mind like a familiar movie, “Just one,” she concluded.

When she didn’t continue with any details, I asked gently, “Who was it?”

“A man I’ve been seeing.” She spoke this softly, too, as if she really knew deep down that this man might not be of the highest character. But lonely people don’t always use wisdom as they search for a companion, do they?

Not wanting to get too personal, but sensing that this individual was the root of her new problem, I gently asked, “Was there any physical contact?”

“Yes.”

“That’s the problem,” I responded. “You invited evil in by inviting a person in who is personally involved in evil. And your physical contact with him—however innocent it might have been—also invited the unseen evil on him right into your place of safety. And it’s not safe right now.

“What do I do?”

“Sever contact with the man,” I suggested, “and clean up the house again, just like you did before. Ask God to forgive you and to give you discernment for this in the future.”

All this she did, plus she added an additional set of stakes, a prayer sticker on her car, and prayers stickers on every window and door.

Early the next morning I texted her. “How did you sleep?”

“Great,” she quickly replied. “It worked.” Then she thanked me. Then I thanked God, the Great Protector.

Lord sometimes I return to the evil thing I thought I had learned to avoid. Forgive me—again. Cleanse me from the inside out—again. And help me to do better in the future. Fill me with Your Spirit, and lead me closer to You each day. I don’t want anything in my life to separate me from You. In Jesus’ Name, Amen.

Bible-Based Thoughts Based On This Event:
Demons sometimes go right back to where they just came from.
Demons that have been expelled for a time are still near, hoping to return.
Demons can attach themselves to people who are actively participating in evil.
Demons attached to evil people who penetrate and invade the defenses
of a protected person can then remain inside those defenses.
Demons can be expelled a second time (after re-invasion).

“What Are The Stakes?” (God Markers On The Land), by Steve Hemphill – Pages 17 – 20