This continues my discussion on spiritual doorways. After our small group cleansed our house, the demonic manifestations largely stopped, but still presences that scared her sometimes managed to invade her room. However, more frequently our daughter would still point to things outside the house, for instance at the window looking in. Sometimes we’d pray against them to make them go away, and sometimes we just ignored them.
But still, she would have many nightmares. Many, many nightmares. We prayed, we counseled, we monitored what she watched on television or read, … Nothing worked. We just couldn’t imagine what was causing her nightmares. These weren’t developmentally normal… they were terrifying.
Sometimes when our daughter would wake up, there would be a dark presence in her room, and she’d run into our room, or sometime the nightmare would be so real, it’d wake her up and she’d run in our room. Often, by inviting the presence of God in, peace would return, and the dark spirit would leave.
And then something happened.
My wife and I were going through a marital challenge at the time, and I was (unjustly) angry one night. I turned on a particularly violent movie on television… one of those goofy “B-movies” on SyFy. This one was about monstrous bugs graphically eating people. My wife wouldn’t watch it, so she went to bed. I sat there, watching the bugs mutilate the actors, and I realized I was numbing out on this violence. As a Follower of Jesus, I recognize that human life has value, and that God loves humans a lot. I felt like God was telling me that I was celebrating the symbolic mutilation of what he loves: people. So I turned off the movie, and decided to give up those kinds of movies, even though I really liked them, for 21 days.
That night, our daughter had another nightmare.
The next morning, I apologized to my wife for being a jerk, and told her of my fast. She told me she recognized I was numbing out, and had prayed I’d see that too. I thought that was kind of interesting (hint: if you’re married, pray for your spouse).
So 21 days passed, and I eagerly anticipated watching a violent monster movie. I had DVR’d several of them. I watched about a half hour of it, and shut it off. The violence was too graphic for me – although for decades I had easily watched far worse, and I wasn’t enjoying the movie at all. In fact, I was viewing it like “monster porn.”
That night, my daughter had a nightmare.
And I realized, she had been nightmare-free for 3 weeks. Now keep in mind, I didn’t watch these movies until after she was asleep and never at a volume where she could hear them. And yet, me watching those movies invited something to give her a nightmare. It was creating a doorway in my family to demonic attack.
I’ve given up those horror movies altogether, and she has been freed from night-terrors. And yes, I felt and still feel like an ass for inadvertently inviting demonic attacks all those years on her.
So am I saying graphic violence opens a doorway for everyone? No. But I’m saying things in our lives do open doorways to demonic attack. Here is a short list of things I know created doorways in specific instances. This is not everything… it’s just a list of actions I have encountered either personally or in ministering to others.
- Viewing pornography
- Abusing drugs
- Alcohol abuse
- Viewing self-harm actions, such as cutting
- Listening to death metal music
- Viewing and reading depressing images
- Viewing bloody acts of violence
- Viewing occult movies
- Reading graphic violence
- Reading occult literature
- Viewing paranormal movies about Vampires, Zombies, Werewolves, and Magic
- Playing with Oija boards
- Casting spells using demons
- Trying to control demons
- Invoking Magic
- Inviting and talking to spirits other than the Holy Spirit
- Trying to talk to ghosts
- Trying to talk to the dead
- Possessing little statues and idols
- Holding onto bitterness
- Experiencing rejection or abuse by a parent
- Having sex with someone besides your spouse, especially degrading sex acts
- Sexual abuse, rape, incest, and molestation
- Sexting with someone besides your spouse
- Cursing others
- Practicing legalistic Christianity or other religions
- Practicing Wicca and witchcraft
- Reading horoscopes and practicing astrology
What are they in your life? Ask the Holy Spirit to reveal them to you, and be willing to get rid of them.