Overcoming the Powers of Darkness
"For the weapons of our warfare are not carnal but mighty in God for pulling down strongholds, casting down arguments and every high thing that exalts itself against the knowledge of God." 1 Cor. 10:4,5
"Therefore submit to God. Resist the devil and he will flee from you. Draw near to God and He will draw near to you." James 4:7,8
"For this purpose the Son of God was manifested, that He might destroy the works of the devil." 1 John 3:8
"Behold, I give you the authority to trample on serpents and scorpions and over all the power of the enemy and nothing shall by any means hurt you." Luke 10:19
The Testimony of a Young Adult
I grew up in a fairly average home in my country—well as average as a home can be with mum, dad and eight children!! I was the second eldest and the oldest daughter so helping to raise my six younger siblings was the norm. We were a normal Christian family. I grew up as a Christian, went to a Christian school and had all Christian friends. I did well at school and was involved in church activities from a young age. God had been a part of my life from my birth. I didn't know anything different.
What I did know from a young age was that I was not happy. What could a young child have to be depressed about? I grew up suffering from all types of abuse, sexual, physical, verbal and emotional. That’s a lot for a young girl to process and cope with. It was this abuse that would shape the person that I would become as an adult and affect the relationships that I had with others.
At the age of 18, I went to a Christian College to study nursing. On the exterior I was a happy but quiet, studious person. I had a few close friends and felt no need to socialize outside that circle. The real reason, however, I chose not to get to know people was because I didn't trust them, and although my friends thought I was happy, inside I was dying. I desperately needed help but just didn’t know where to get it. I would half-heartedly ask God to send me someone who could help with the pain, but I never really expected him to answer me.
I went along to a prayer meeting one night (which is not something I would usually do) and I remember listening to the guy that was leading out. As I was listening to him I felt God soften my heart and tell me that this guy could indeed start me on the path to healing. Well that’s just great I thought. How I am I suppose to go up to a complete stranger and say “Hi, I’m Susanne and I need help.” To be honest I really can’t remember what I said to him, but I wrote an email asking if we could meet and have a chat and he agreed.
I shared with him some of the pain that was inside of me, but I just couldn’t let go and express just how unhappy I really was. How could I trust this complete stranger with all of the details of my life? So even though I had finally gotten out of my system some of the poison inside of me, it certainly wasn’t enough for complete healing. The seed had been planted though, and from that meeting came a special friendship, and from that friendship which God himself enabled, came further healing and a new relationship with Christ.
While I was at the school I met another person that would make a major impact in my life but in a different way and we fell desperately in love—well, I fell desperately in love. He became my life. I had no need for anyone else because he was everything to me. He gave me all I needed to live a happy life, or so I thought at the time. I was still going to church out of habit but my relationship with God was non existent. I still prayed every night before I went to bed and I read my bible occasionally when I was feeling a bit guilty because it had been a while, but I certainly did not have a good relationship with God. I didn’t need him anyway, because I had a wonderful boyfriend and we were getting married. I had stability for the rest of my life. What could go wrong….A lot!!
The year was 2002. A lifetime of trials was about to hit me in a period of six months. My entire life and future was never going to be the same. February 16, my darling future husband who I just loved and adored more that anything in the entire universe casually announces on Saturday evening that he was “leaving me.” WHAT!!!! WHAT!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! Leaving me just like that. No explanation except that he was unhappy. Well, I was unhappy too but that was no reason to go and end our relationship, we could be unhappy together! (Yes at the time I did actually believe this!)
.A few months after “the separation” I had become unwell and ended up in hospital having to have a 5 and a 1/2 hour operation. While I was in hospital recovering from the op I received a visit from my now ex-boyfriend. Cool, I thought. I always believed that we would get back together. I was just waiting patiently for him to come to his senses. Unfortunately no sense came out of his mouth that day. He told me that he was moving to Albania, on Friday which was in three days time. So he packed up and left the country while I was still in hospital. Life just couldn’t get any worse, or so I thought.
Two weeks after I got home from hospital I received a phone call from my mum. She told me I had to come home straight away. “Dad’s got cancer and they have given him 3 days to a week to live.” Nothing I can say will ever explain what those words did to me. I hopped on the next flight home and watched my father die. From the time that he was diagnosed to the time that he died was six weeks. Six weeks of heart wrenching pain for us but unbelievable physical and emotional pain for dad.
I was home for a total of two months during that time supporting mum and the kids, who were still young. I was so busy running the household and supporting every one else I had no time to grieve for dad. I just wanted to get home to Sydney and be around my friends and get some support myself. The support that I needed though just wasn’t there. My friends didn’t know what to say? They would ask how I was and I would always reply “Good thanks”, even though I was on the verge of dying myself. I would go to church and sit up the back somewhere, hoping that someone would see I needed help and come and say hi but it never happened. People had no idea. What they saw was a quiet smiling girl, but I was far from it.
I got to the stage where I would imagine what it would be like to be dead. I would wake up in the morning disappointed because I had woken up. I didn’t want to be here. I wanted to die but I knew that if I committed suicide my family would never survive it. So I came up with an ingenious plan: maybe they would cope better with my death if it wasn’t “Suicide.” But how could I kill myself and not actually kill myself, and then I got it. The devil!! Getting involved with the devil is bound to be certain death and who knows, I just might have some fun while I am at it!! I was so angry at God because by this stage I had been begging Him for help but I just wasn’t getting any. So turning to the devil was also a way to say to Him, “See, look what you’ve done. You’ve ignored my pain so now I have to go to the devil for help. It’s all your fault.”
So, one night I stood in the middle of my lounge room floor and said to God, “I am so unhappy, but you just don’t care. I plan ways to kill myself, but have you sent anyone to help me? No! So from tonight I am turning from you to the one being in the world who I know hates me, and I know that it means death, but I don’t care. I want nothing to do with you anymore. I want to become a member of Satan’s kingdom.”
With that I started two years of occult activity. My house was full of rubbish that would attract demons. Various books on occult, vampires, anything supernatural. I thought that I was special. I believed that I had something that most people didn’t have, the power of darkness, and I loved it. I was still incredibly unhappy but I didn’t care. At least I was going down with a bang.
I got involved in various types of occult activity, but mainly witchcraft. I use to visit the spiritual world frequently by astral projection. It was during one such visit that I officially gave my life to Satan. There were countless numbers of spirits watching, demonic and human, as I walked down the aisle with a crown on my head. That crown represented the crown of life given to me by Jesus. I walked towards Satan, who was seated on his thrown, dressed in shining white. He was the most handsome “person” had ever seen. He smiled at me as I walked towards him. Only now do I realize that his smiles never reached his eyes. I went to him and handed him my crown, giving him authority in my life and allowing him to be my master instead of Jesus. I cannot explain the most triumphant laugh that Satan let out once he had my crown. Gone was the smiling handsome man. In his place was a cold and hard power, which I didn’t understand.
Even though Satan scared me at times, he would often present himself as a kind, loving, even caring person. He knows peoples weaknesses and he uses that to his advantage. I was desperate for love and acceptance so that is what he gave me. I was totally hooked. I had grand plans of becoming a high priestess in witchcraft, and eventually wanted to become a bride of Satan. Very few were ever trained for this privilege but I wanted it, right or wrong.
What I didn’t realize at the time was that people were praying for me. People were praying for my freedom and people were praying for my protection. It was around this time that my occult experiences started to change. They went from just knowing and feeling that evil presences were around, to waking up being strangled by demons. I would wake up paralyzed, not able to move or speak and realize that there would be a demon lying in the bed next to me, screaming in my ear. Because I couldn’t speak there was nothing that I could do to make it go away. I would lie there terrified and just say over and over in my head, “Jesus help me, Jesus help me.” Eventually I would be able to speak and would say, “In the name of Jesus go away.” It would stop immediately and I would be able to breathe. This would happen almost every night. I got to the stage where I just wanted them gone so I asked God for help.
I didn’t know what to do. I picked up my mobile phone and said to God, “If you want to help me, you have to make Mark (my friend from college) available to speak with me now.” I sent him a text and just as I pressed the send button, I received a reply. Call me at home. My heart was pounding!!!! What was I suppose to say to him. I knew I was in desperate need of help but just didn’t even know where to start! I have no idea what I said when I first got on the phone but after telling him I needed help he said the he felt God was going to set me free that night if I was willing. I was.
So for the next few hours we identified the strongholds that the devil had in my life, occult activity, anger, fear and much more. We started claiming back ground that I had given away, and gave it back to Jesus. I had so much anger and pain in me. It was that anger and pain that had really caused me to turn to Satan in the first place. It was important to identify and deal with the source of that anger and pain—if it’s not dealt with, the devil will use it as a doorway into one’s life again.
I came to see that life is like a chess board. Each little square on the board represents an event or person in your life. It you allow, Satan can use each event or square to his advantage and build a stronghold or castle there. Depending on how many squares you allow him to have on the chess board, he can build a whole kingdom! From each castle in your life, he can rain down arrows onto all the others areas in your life causing all sorts of problems. Satan had many castles in my life, and he was using them to kill me!
The relief I felt after I claimed Jesus back as my Saviour was immediate. I remember sitting on my lounge and being filled with such an amazing sense of peace. Demons would still come and bother me but I now knew that God had given me authority over them.
After a while life became routine again. I was going to church and spending time with God, but still letting fear rule my life. One day God started putting on my heart to move to another country. I ignored Him for two years. Then one day I finally said, “Fine. If You want me to go, You sort it out” and He did.
The registration papers that usually take months to receive and process for working as a nurse overseas took one week. When I resigned from my job I got a long service leave payout which I was not expecting. This helped me finance my move to the new country and buy a car once I got there.
The changes that God is making in me while I am here in this country are truly amazing. I still see areas in my life that are hindered by fear, but as I learn to trust God and give him more and more of my life each day, that fear is slowly disappearing. I am finding that God won’t immediately take my fear away. He expects me to do what He is asking, despite the fear, and as I step out in faith and trust Him He gradually takes the fear away.
The advantages I have from being a child of God can never compare to what I thought I had from belonging to Satan. God loves me more than my human mind could ever begin to imagine. He longs for me to spend time with him. He died so that I can live with him forever. He died so that I wouldn’t have to be a slave to Satan. Through Jesus, God has given me authority over Satan. I no longer have to fear him or his demons because they flee in the name of Jesus. I belong to Jesus Christ. I am a child of God and the privileges that come with that title are just amazing.
Satan has been defeated. He just doesn’t want us to know that. Satan hates us! Everything that ever comes from his mouth is a lie. He can present himself as a beautiful kind person but it is all a lie. He wants to draw you into his kingdom simply because he doesn’t want you to have eternal life. Satan wants us dead but praise God, through Jesus Christ, we have life.
God is moving in my life in an amazing way. In supernatural ways. The changes that He is making are astounding and I know that He is preparing me for even more amazing things to come. Nothing is impossible when Jesus is the centre of our lives. He can do all things. It’s so important to remember this.
Committing your life to Jesus is not a one off event. It needs to happen daily. We live in a world that is fallen, a world full of sin. It is so easy to get distracted by the things that the devil throws in our path. We must remain focused on Jesus. We need to look to Jesus in everything. Not just when we are having troubles. Look to Jesus everyday. Through him nothing is impossible. When we start to fear or doubt we need to remember to stop looking at ourselves—stop focusing on all the reasons why WE can’t do something and focus on all the ways Jesus can and WILL do it!
God is beyond our imagination. He can do anything. He saved me from the destruction that I had planned for myself and He is now changing me into the woman that He wishes me to be. God is going to use me to accomplish amazing things for him. Why? Because I have told him that I am willing. God takes lives that are surrendered to him and uses them to glorify himself, the King of the universe.
How privileged and blessed I am that God would accept my life and take it and change it and use it to show people the power of God.
Praise God for the work that He is completing in me!!!!
Are you struggling with Satan's presence in your life? Various materials are gathered at the following address that you wil find helpful: Prayer, Authority & Overcoming Satan
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