A STORY THAT IS REALITY – Part 4

Demons Manifesting – God Is Teaching Me

Novo Friburgo, RJ

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My years living in Brazil have taught me much – and there is more to learn.

Cal and I and our three youngest children are living in this city in some of the mountains that thrust themselves to the heights near Rio de Janeiro, Brazil. 

It is winter – and COLD at night.

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(Just to give you an idea, we can see our breath when we first get up; until wood is placed on the small fireplace to take the chill out of the house.)

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The small house we are renting has three bedrooms and two small bathrooms with electric showers – the more slowly one runs the water, the warmer the water is. Of course, if one runs the water too slowly, the electric shower quits working – and all you get is COLD WATER.  It’s a delicate task to maintain water at a livable temperature: which means one seldom succeeds.

Our two daughters sleep together with five or six blankets piled on top of them, our son sleeps in warm clothes plus many blankets, Cal and I have an electric blanket with one heavy blanket on top of it – and consider ourselves RICH!

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Most of you would think we were crazy to be thankful for this house – but there is a lot of laughter here, with many young people traipsing through.  Supper is usually after dark, with a good fire going so the house is warm, I learned how to make guava jam… that with fresh French bread, coffee and hot milk, and fresh lemonade made with the blender, 10 or 12 young people crowded around a small table…we could eat a LOT!

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A few weeks earlier, four of these youths had come and knocked on our door to ask if we would be willing to teach them Bible lessons.  Would we ever!
We began — now the group was growing and would soon grow too large to meet in our house.  But we weren’t there yet . . .

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Tonight, after we ate, we headed towards an apartment house of one of the girls to have a Bible Study in their building’s “social room.”
There were 20 or 25 there… It was a great time. 

Before leaving, we all formed a circle, holding hands, so we could pray.

The girl to my right (Elenor) who took my hand was the girl who had invited us to come here. We gave each other big smiles as we clasped our hands.

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One of the boys started the prayer – when suddenly –  bedlam!

It happened so fast, it took me a minute to grasp what was happening.

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The girl that had been holding my hand, was thrown to the floor and was writhing and screaming. All of the young people were praying at the top of their lungs and jostling each other, trying to put their hands on the girl. The noise and confusion was mind-boggling.

I couldn’t even hear my own voice.
I remember wondering what the people in the apartment building were thinking about the noise and racket coming from downstairs.
And I thought, “when Jesus cast out evil spirits, I don’t think this is the way He did this!”

I was able to work my way through the bodies and touch Eleanor. I started praying with a quiet voice, casting the spirits out of her. The noise level went down (that girl could really scream as the demons manifested), somehow Cal got those young people to start to pray quietly.

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I helped Eleanor get up, then hugged her.  All who were there, also came up and hugged her.  I explained a little bit of what had happened to her, and she told me she’d been attending spiritualist meetings. (That explained it all to me.)

Cal and I prayed with her one more time before she went up to her apartment. Everyone went home a little shaken, some not really understanding what had happened.

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(The following night, in our little house, we had a lot of teaching to do, explaining with our Bibles open, as we worked through the events of the night before. And why we could no longer return to the apartments social area.

However, before we met together that night, God allowed me to have an even clearer lesson I have never forgotten.

-voni

A Story that Is Real – Part. 3

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When I got out of bed this morning, I had no idea that God was going to make it an unforgettable day.

Cal dropped me off close to the American school where I teach  the 5th and 6th grades.  The school is in a former home that had been converted to handle the classes.  There are probably no more than 100 students for all the grades.  I enjoy the teaching.

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As I walk towards the school, the warmth of the sun on my back and the spots of shade from the trees feel wonderful  The sidewalk is wide – but broken in places, so one must be careful to watch where you step.
I walk slowly – for I’m arguing with God as I try to understand.

This is what had happened.
Maria Vitoria is a young woman I loved.  She was  an exchange student in Portland, OR, when we lived there, was in our home constantly, although we weren’t her official “parents.”

Her real home was in Belo Horizonte where we now lived, and we grew to love her parents and older sister.   Much of my learning about Brazil was in their home.  The family was Catholic/Spiritist and from the Alan Kadec branch of spiritism. They made me feel welcome whenever I was there, for they all spoke English. Their home became kind of a refuge for me – a place of “safety” .

About a month ago, Maria Vitoria had a nasty fall on a sidewalk, badly scraping her legs and knees.  Even after several visits to the doctors, her legs refused to heal.  A couple of days previously, she went to a spiritualist gathering and the medium healed her legs, immediately.  She was thrilled and telling all of her friends what had happened.

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I was thinking about this as I walked… and I am upset with God.

“Father, what is going on!  I know that Jesus healed people when He walked here on the earth, and I’ve read stories where people said they were healed these days. However, I was taught that the days of miracles and healing ended when all the apostles died.

But look at this!  Maria Vitoria was healed by a spiritualist medium. I believe her.  I know she is truthful and doesn’t exaggerate, and there is no possibility of misunderstanding her English. This really happened!

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How do I fit this into what I have believed is true?
Do the spiritualist mediums have more power than You?
No, I know that is not true. You are God the Father, God the Son and God the Holy Spirit!  You are God, Three in One.
All powerful. Omnipotent. King of Kings and Lord of Lords.
There is NO ONE OR THING more powerful than You!”

I am almost in tears. I do not understand! Quietly a calmness comes as a new thought breaks into my mind.
No, Satan and his spirits have no strength over God. But if they can sow seeds of doubt in my mind, they win.

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There is only one solution I can see.
God has the most power.
Therefore, He has more power to heal than any spirit
I was taught that miracles and evil spirits do not exist today.
That teaching was wrong!

God has ALL power. Satan used  man (Adam) to break the promises God had given to mankind. This  caused Satan to become Lord of this earth, instead of man.
A
man – without sin – had to die to restore that contract.
Jesus did just that.
He created a new contract and bought my freedom, destroying the divide between God and I  that Satan had created.
                                                                                    

Lord God, I  am beginning to have a new concept about everything!
I thank You for Your Holy Spirit, Who is showing this to me!  I need You to teach me how to win spiritual battles

Today we live in a world and a  spiritual battle field surrounds us.
I better open my eyes and see!!!.

I go up the stairs to the school, greeting the students and other teachers.
No one realizes that my concepts of life were totally altered by my conversation with God as I walked in the freshness of a morning in Belo Horizonte, MG, Brazil

As I look back to that day, I am aware that I also didn’t understand its significance, nor how God would continue to teach me until even today.

When a dear brother in Christ from Sri Lanka shared what he has learned about spiritual warfare, I perceived how the battles in the spiritual world are spilling over into our physical world, and today, it is time for me to start sharing. These battles will become more fierce, and we need to know what weapons God has given us with which to fight, and how to use them.     

– Voni-

A Story that Is Real – part 2 An Unnormal Day

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My next-door neighbor, Maria, and I are standing in her kitchen. She’s been talking to me, and now she is using a serious tone of voice.  I still must listen intently to understand – and my mind had wandered as I asked myself: (Maria – why is everyone named Maria, Even some of the men? A friend’s doctor is named José Maria Santos.  Why ???)

Suddenly, a word got through. “medium” …(in reference to the person who speaks to and hears from spirits, transmitting their requests – and orders – to you.)

“I’m sorry, I didn’t understand.”

 “You need to listen to me more carefully!” Maria sputters.
“I’m telling you that you NEED to take Joãozinho to a medium so he can get well!
He’s been sick for several days with a fever and diarrhea, and that is dangerous. He could become dehydrated and you wouldn’t even know it!”

My stomach turned over. Our three-year-old needs a doctor, not a medium.

Maria continues. “Think about it. Whenever one of my children gets sick, I take them to a medium I know. I would be glad to take you and Joãozinho.”

I thank her profusely
(I’ve learned how to do that well, as I discover how much the Brazilians like to help.) Then we kiss on each other’s cheeks (left cheek first, so you don’t bump noses) and I return to my house, talking to God as I go.


Lord, help! Why is Joãozinho so ill?  All of the children know to drink from the filter, and not from the faucet.  It isn’t the alligator tail we ate a few days ago – at least I don’t think so! I know it was well -fried. WHAT is wrong? “

I am worried. No phone to call for help. I walk and pray, check on Joãozinho and get some more water down him, then pray and walk.

About 45 minutes later, someone knocks on our front door. I hear Cal answer it, then voices talking.  I go downstairs. Paulo and Ana (a Brazilian couple who will be married in a few months and who both  speak English, Ana’s younger sister (her sister was with them as their chaperone – in 1967 any couple has to have a chaperone on a date) – and another man – who also speaks English. I am thrilled to have company and start to the kitchen to make some cafézinho. Paulo stops me.


Voni and Cal, I brought Dr.Fabio here to see Joãozinho. Dr Fabio is an obstetrician. Someone told us your little son was sick, and Dr Fabio wants to see him, first of all. Then we’ll have that coffee.”

I want to jump up and down, praising God.  This morning Maria told me I needed a medium.  God knew we needed a doctor, and He brought one to us!

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What I learned?  We were on a well, so I trusted the water. WRONG.
Dr Fabio takes a water sample for the labs, examinesJoãozinho, gives him medication-
then we adults had some delicious cafézinho , along with a wonderful visit before our guests left; and Dr Fábio giving me a condensed version of things I needed to do – immediately. I had to start boiling all water for 30 minutes before using it. 24/7 Even the water used in brushing teeth.
A few days later, the lab report stated the water was heavily contaminated.  So the water boiling regimen continued all the time we lived there..😊


That day will always stand out in my memory as a water-shed moment.
I still remember the shock of Maria saying I should take our son to a medium.
Spiritism was imbedded into their lives. Dealing with the spirits —  I had thought that evil spirits were in Biblical times but not now
I have had many lessons from God showing me this is not true.  Because of His grace, the lessons started gradually.  I’m going to share some of them with you, for I want you to be aware of the spiritual world that surrounds you and I.  It is just as real as my bones and flesh. We may deny that angels, evil spirits and/or miracles exist today. But what we think does not change the reality.

In the following stories I may change some of the names and not always give you the year . . . But what happened, happened.


– Voni –