TESTIFY!!!

Who wants a challenge?

In the spirit of the Easter holiday (or, as my friend DB’s dad called it, “Resurrection Day”) my pastor put together a short video with his phone camera. On a regular Sunday morning, he came up to various people in the church and asked us how we know that Jesus is alive today. Some of my friends were on it. So was I – not Ryan’s fault, if I see a camera, I basically jump in front of it. We were challenged to tell the camera, in 10 to 15 seconds, how we know that Jesus is alive today. The answers ranged from philosophical, to testimonial, to just plain cute (one little girl was asked, “How do you know Jesus is alive?” Her answer? “I don’t know, I just do.” Cue everyone in church going Awwwwwwwwwwwwwwwwwww.)

It was so cute, only this kitten-playing-with-a-baby-duck can compare to the experience.

Then, on the heels of my last post, where I expressed some concern about three teenage girls in Arizona claiming to cast out demons, I decided that I really didn’t know anything about real exorcism – or even if it exists. Now, my pastor Jay has mentioned witnessing some kind of demonic activity in the past, although I’m not sure it was an exorcism and I don’t want to put words in his mouth. So when I say that I don’t know if it exists, what I mean is this – if Skeptical Buttface Dan were to walk up to Newfangled Christian Dan and say, “Hey, so. . . how do you know that demons are real and people need to be exorcised of them?”, and I responded, “Well, some people I trust tell me it’s the case,” Newfangled Christian Dan would get laughed at by Skeptical Buttface Dan.

Also, Skeptical Buttface Dan is a little girl, as many have pointed out to me throughout the years.

Just sayin’.

So I emailed Ryan and asked for book recommendations, especially because I’ll be attending a Society of Vineyard Scholars event this weekend, but I’ll miss the session about demony type things on Thursday night because I can’t make it until Friday morning. He recommended a couple of books, and the one I picked up is “Authority to Heal” by Ken Blue. Right off the bat, I dig that the book I’m reading about people throwing up split pea soup (in theory) is first and foremost a book about healing. Although, admittedly, I was expecting something a little more awesomely dark, like the Malleus Maleficarum, but this Kindle book is okay, too!

"Oh, it's bound in just, like, regular. . . cow. . . skin? No, no, that's cool. . . I'll just download it to my e-reader, I guess."

I’m looking forward to digging a little deeper into the more blatantly spiritual side of following Jesus – not because exorcism is cool (I’m not going to open up that can of worms by temping the devil with a pissing contest) but because every single supernatural experience has the potential to grow my faith. My skepticism runs very, very deep in me. It’s part of who I am. And I hope, some day, to replace my skepticism with “discernment,” like Jay told me a couple of weeks ago. But before I can discern between the true and the false, I need to learn more about the true. That’s what I’m trying to do now.

Who wants to help me? Raise some hands, people!

I want the comments section on this post to be flooded with testimonials. I want you, the “What the Faith?!?!” readers, to tell me about supernatural occurrences that have changed your life and strengthened your faith. I’ve told a couple of stories before (like this one) but now I want to hear yours. Do you know someone who has been healed? Have you witnessed a possession and subsequent spiritual healing? Do you have stories that seem so unbelievable that you hesitate to tell them? I’d love to hear this stuff.

About Daniel Mitchell

50% of "What the Faith?!?!", a blog about two skeptics who turned to God for no apparent reason. View all posts by Daniel Mitchell

8 responses to “TESTIFY!!!

  • visitingmissouri

    Awe man! No demons here, although I had some experiences with the Holy Ghost. No, Skeptical Buttface Dan, He didn’t introduce himself, but I still know. I’ll tell about one.

    I was raised as a christian, my dad being a minister and all. At age 19, I was in a christian college and started to know other christians. Not all are the best example and I started having my doubts on faith. On an unrelated note (is what I told myself), I was dating a girl who didn’t go to church. I stopped going to church and after a few months wounded up practicing physical activities that I now believe are meant to be exclusively enjoyed by a married couple. After one of those activities, I was reminded of a christian kids song that I heard a lot when I was young. When I started humming it, the room filled with ‘joy’, through my arm I could feel an incredible amount of energy flowing to my girlfriend’s head and she started crying and asking ‘What’s happening?’. I realized I wanted to go back to church (still cynical) and my brother was giving a testomony in church. After that, the same kids song was playing and I started crying (I don’t fully remember, but I’m still afraid it might have been so loud, it ruined the song for everyone). There’s more to the story, but this is all the supernatural I feel there is.

  • Rebekah Grace

    You lost me at supernatural occurences! None come to the top of my head, so I guess that wouldn’t make me ‘visiting missouri’s’ old gal pal :)

    Seriously, I don’t even like the word testimony. That’s my junk though. I would have to say it’s my life, in general. Kind of the thing where you’d have to know me back ‘then’ to go, “Hmmmm, what’s up with her?” And not in an uber religous way, I can’t even stomach church yet (that’s a longer story than I’m willing).

    Actually, before I even gave my life back to Christ (late 2007) I started praying the pillow prayers (early 2007). Mostly asking for forgiveness…..I’d done some doozies. A few months after that my oldest daughter is turning 21 (mid 2007), it’s midnight the night before her birthday and she heads out to the bars. I’m so concerned that she’s about to muck up her life with booze like her Dad and I’d been attending Al-Anon and AA meetings so was hearing alot of stuff on surrendering, so I say to God, straight up…..”She’s yours!!” And in an instant there’s this peace washing over me. It’s warm, it’s total, and it’s good. It was proof He had heard me. Me! Me? Didn’t He know all the shit I’d done? Didn’t He know how I loved being the rebel child (and still do)? Didn’t He know…..turns out, He did, He does and He will….But His love in Christ is bigger than all my past.

    And that, my new friend, is my story and I’m sticking to it!

    • Rebekah Grace

      The way I wrote wasn’t clear, but both my husband and I let alcohol rule for a time in our lives. It’s a demon for sure. Slick, exciting at first and then……nothin’ but screwed up lives to show.

    • Daniel Mitchell

      I would consider that supernatural. I know what it’s like to have something come into your head/heart that you know didn’t come from you. And anyone who has ever been in any kind of emotional pain, and desperately wanted that peace to come, and didn’t get it – those people know that a peace like you felt is a BIG FRIGGIN’ DEAL. I’ve had an experience like that as well. I don’t think I blogged about it, but maybe I’ll throw it up during a story time in the future. :)

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