How to Grieve Healthfully

by Dr. MaryAnn Diorio

WINNING WITH THE WORD

“Winning with the Word” is a weekly blog that will help you to be a winner in life by applying God’s principles for living the abundant life as found in the Bible, God’s manual for life.

AN INVITATION TO YOU: To follow this blog, click here. 

If this blog has blessed you, please encourage your family and friends to subscribe as well. Thank you!

______________________________________

 

 

 

Do you prefer listening instead of reading? Then click below to listen to today’s blog post:

 

 

 

______________________________________________

Hello and Happy Day! This is Dr. MaryAnn Diorio, Novelist and Life Coach, welcoming you to another episode of Winning with the Word. Today is Monday, May 11, 2020. Today’s Podcast is Episode #19 in Series 2020 and is titled “How to Grieve Heathfully.”

Grief is a part of the human experience. Not a pleasant part, but an inevitable one. Yet, grief brings with it some dangers of which we need to be aware. 

There are many types of grief. Probably the worst kind of grief is the loss of a loved one, whether sudden or expected. Either way, we are never prepared for the death of someone close to us.

But there is also the grief that comes from the loss of a friendship, the loss of a love relationship, the loss of a job, the loss of a dream, the loss of a bodily function, the loss of finances. I could go on and on and on. 

No matter the cause of the grief, the process of grieving is similar. Let’s take a look at this process, keeping in mind that there is a right way and a wrong way to grieve. We discover the right way to grieve in God’s Holy Word. Here are three important keys to grieving healthfully:

1. Grieve! This may sound obvious, but some people resist grieving in an attempt to be stoic. But the Bible not only permits grieving; it encourages it. 

When referring to the death of believers, the Apostle Paul wrote this in 1 Thessalonians 4: 13: “And now, dear brothers and sisters, we want you to know what will happen to the believers who have died so you will not grieve like people who have no hope.” 

Paul didn’t simply write, “so you will not grieve.” No, he wrote “so you will not grieve like people who have no hope.” In other words, Paul encouraged grieving, but the right kind of grieving–the grieving that was filled with hope. What hope? The hope of being reunited one day with one’s loved one in Heaven. This is the wonderful hope experienced by those who are born again.

2. God wants us to express our grief to Him. The Psalmist David is our example in this. David frequently expressed his grief to God. But almost always, his expression of grief turned into an expression of praise. Expressing our grief to God lightens its burden as God replaces our grief with His comfort.

3. God wants us to express our grief to others. God has placed us in relationship to others so that we can bless one another. Part of blessing another is to share our pain during times of loss. Allow others to comfort you when you are grieving. Sharing the load will lighten it.

Grief becomes dangerous when it becomes pathological. Pathological grief is inordinate grief that remains stuck and cannot resolve itself. This most often occurs when the person has not gone through the stages of grief in a healthful manner. Although I won’t get into them here, these stages of grief include denial, anger, bargaining with God, depression, and acceptance.

If you are experiencing grief, know that God cares. As you give your grief to Him, He will take it and, in due time, restore to you the joy of living. 

Jesus died to take away our grief. If you do not yet know Him as your Savior, pray this simple prayer with me now to receive Him:

Lord Jesus,You, above all others, are acquainted with grief. I come to You now, giving You my grief and asking You to come into my life to save me, heal me, and restore me. I receive You now as my Savior and Lord. In Your Name I pray. Amen.

If you prayed this simple prayer, please write to me at drmaryann@maryanndiorio.com. I would like to send you a little booklet that will help you get started in your relationship with Jesus Christ. I also encourage you to get yourself a Bible and read it every single day, starting in the Gospel of John, which is in the second half of the Bible. The Bible is God’s love letter to you, His manual for your life. In it He reveals Who He is, and He instructs you how to live.

Finally, ask the Lord to lead you to the church of His choice for you where you can learn about Him and have fellowship and encouragement with other Christ-Followers.

For those of you who may not know, I write fiction about many of the issues I deal with in this blog and podcast. My latest novel, In Black and White, recently won First Place in the Historical Fiction Category of the 2020 Christian Indie Book Awards Contest. It is the compelling love story between a white woman and a black man as they face great grief in overwhelming the many obstacles that threaten to destroy their love. You can purchase your copy in print or ebook format on Amazon, Barnes & Noble, Kobo, iBooks, and other popular venues. 

  

BUY NOW!

For additional resources on living the abundant life in Christ, visit my website at maryanndiorio.com.

If you have been blessed by these messages, I also invite you to become a Winning with the Word patron on Patreon. As a patron you will enjoy special benefits only for my patrons. Just go to Patreon.com and search for Winning with the Word to join. I would like to thank all of my patrons who are making this podcast possible. It is now reaching 19 countries throughout the world with the message of the Gospel. I could not do this without you.

Thank you so much for listening. This is Dr. MaryAnn Diorio, novelist and life coach, reminding you that God loves you just as you are and just where you are, and that He will help you to keep on winning with the Word.

To subscribe to “Winning with the Word”, click here.

To receive my monthly newsletter, click here.

Listen to the podcast here:

________________________________________________

Now it’s your turn:  “What steps have you taken to overcome perfectionism?”  Please leave your comment in the Comment Box below. Thank you!

PLEASE TWEET:  “How to Grieve Healthfully” by Dr. MaryAnn Diorio (CLICK TO TWEET)

Please tell your family and friends about “Winning with the Word,” and please pass this post on to them. Thank you!

Check out these three popular Winning with the Word podcasts below. You may also search for a particular topic in the search box at the top of the sidebar on this page. 

__WHY the Corona Virus?

__You Are ALREADY HEALED!

__The Dangers of the Enneagram

__Is the World Coming to an End?

__The Coming Global Cataclysm

 Are you new to this blog? If so, what is the “Winning with the Word” blog and why will it bless you to read it?

“Winning with the Word” is a weekly blog that helps you to deal with the daily problems of life by using the Bible as your guide to solving them. The Word of God will make you a success in life!

AN INVITATION TO YOU: To subscribe to Winning with the Word, click here.

_____________________________________________________________

Copyright 2000-2020 by Dr. MaryAnn Diorio. All Rights Reserved. This article may not be published or printed in any form whatsoever without the written permission of Dr. MaryAnn Diorio. You may contact her at info@maryanndiorio.com to request permission.

Amazon.com Required Disclosure: MaryAnn Diorio is a participant in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program, an affiliate advertising program designed to provide a means for sites to earn advertising fees by advertising and linking to Amazon.com.Disclaimer: This site uses cookies. Your continued use of this site constitutes your consent to our use of cookies. 

“Is It Wrong to Use Crystals and Gemstones for Healing?”

WINNING WITH THE WORD

“Winning with the Word” is a weekly blog that will help you to be a winner in life by applying God’s principles for living the abundant life as found in the Bible, God’s manual for life.

AN INVITATION TO YOU: To follow this blog, click here. 

If this blog has blessed you, please encourage your family and friends to subscribe as well. Thank you!

______________________________________

\

Do you prefer listening instead of reading? Then click below to listen to today’s blog post:

____________________________________________________

Back in the day when I was in high school and college and studied history, I used to marvel at the barbaric practices of people in earlier civilizations.  Surely, I thought, we are becoming more civilized as time goes on.  These kinds of practices are done and over with forever.

How wrong I was! It seems as though we in the 21stcentury have regressed as a civilization. Despite the amazing advances in technology and the incredible accumulation of knowledge, we are still spiritually primitive at heart. 

A case in point is the contemporary rise of the occult. For a generation that prides itself on human reason, this resurgent interest in the occult seems mind-boggling, if not downright absurd. How could a generation of educationally advanced people still engage in practices once considered associated with educational poverty? Yet it is happening before our very eyes. All around us we see signs that the human mind, despite all of its advances, is still rooted in sin.

Let’s consider the occult practice of using crystals or gemstones for healing, a practice sometimes associated with the false Hindu god Ganesh, the supposed remover of obstacles, including sickness. Using crystals and gemstones for healing is a practice that is widespread today and, sadly, is gaining in popularity, especially among young people.  This practice is rooted in eastern mysticism and teaches that certain crystals, gems, and stones have healing powers when placed on specific parts of the body called “chakras.” Many people claim to have been healed by using gemstones and crystals.

But beware! While a real healing may seem to have taken place, what the persons who uses this modality do not realize is that demonic forces have entered their bodies to inflict a deeper sickness on the levels of the soul and the spirit.  This deeper sickness often does not show up until after the false physical healing has taken place. As the old saying goes, “All that glitters is not gold.”

An undiscerning Christian might think, “What’s wrong with using crystals and gemstones if using them heals me? After all, they’re just stones.” No, they are not just stones. They are conduits for demonic spirits who seek only your destruction through deception.

The Bible describes Satan as an angel of light. This means that he can counterfeit healing and use it as a lure to draw a person into his deathtrap.  Just as Pharaoh’s astrologers were able to counterfeit the power of God operating through Moses, so can New Age healing practitioners counterfeit healing power through the use of Satanic practices. But don’t be deceived! The healing is a false healing, inflicting worse and lasting damage to your soul and your spirit.

The results we get from a particular practice should not be the basis for whether or not we engage in that practice. The end does not justify the means. Instead, we must evaluate every practice by the standard of God’s Word. What does God say about the practice of using crystals and gemstones?

The Bible is quite clear about using any practice that attempts to manipulate the spirit world. Doing so is called witchcraft, and witchcraft is forbidden by God. Consider Deuteronomy 18: 10-12: “Let no one be found among you who sacrifices their son or daughter in the fire,
who practices divination or sorcery, interprets omens, engages in witchcraft or casts spells, or who is a medium or spiritist or who consults the dead. Anyone who does these things is detestable to the LORD.”

Using gems and crystals for healing is a form of witchcraft and is, therefore, contrary to God’s Word and is strictly forbidden. Nowhere does the Bible mention the use of crystals and gemstones for healing. On the contrary, the Bible is clear in its warnings against participating in any practice associated with superstition and the occult. 

When a person uses crystals or gemstones for healing, he is placing his belief and trust in the power of the crystal or gemstone to heal him instead of placing his belief and trust in the power of God to heal him. This is idolatry, or putting someone or something above God.

While we can appreciate the natural beauty of crystals and gems as creations of God, we must not look to them for healing. We must look to the Cross.  As 1 Peter 2: 24 tells us, “By the stripes of Jesus, you were healed.”  It is only through the scourging Jesus took on His back and the blood He shed on the Cross that we are healed. 

The Apostle John gave us a warning in his first letter, chapter 4, verse 1: “Beloved, do not believe every spirit, but test the spirits to see whether they are from God. For many false prophets have gone out into the world.”

In 1 Corinthians 10: 20, the Apostle Paul warned us against participating with demons. The false Indian god Ganesha, mentioned earlier, is a demon. We are forbidden to worship him or any other false god. To do so is idolatry, and idolatry is a sin against the First Commandment. 

Remember this: As is the root, so is the fruit. If the root of a practice is Satanic, the fruit will be Satanic. If the root of a practice is Godly, the fruit will be Godly.

NOTE: I wish to thank blog follower Susi Moffitt for recommending this interesting topic. Thank you, Susi, for your valuable input. 

Listen to the podcast here:

Now, it’s YOUR turn:  Did you learn something new from this post? Please leave your response in the Comment Box below. Thank
you!

TWEETABLE: “Is It Wrong to Use Crystals and Gemstones for Healing?” by Dr. MaryAnn Diorio

Please tell your family and friends about this “Winning with the Word” and please pass this post on to them. Thank you!
_______________________________________________________________

Shedding Shame

WINNING WITH THE WORD
by Dr. MaryAnn Diorio

“Winning with the Word” is a weekly blog that will help you to be a winner in life by applying God’s principles for living the abundant life as found in the Bible, God’s manual for life.

AN INVITATION TO YOU: To follow this blog, click here. 

If this blog has blessed you, please encourage your family and friends to subscribe as well. Thank you!

______________________________________

Do you prefer listening instead of reading? Then click below to listen to today’s blog post:



____________________________________________________

Shame is to the heart as chains are to the body. It imprisons us and causes us great emotional pain.

Shame keeps us bound to the past and prevents us from moving forward into the future with joy and expectation.

What exactly is shame? In his wonderful 1828 dictionary, Noah Webster defines shame as “a painful sensation excited by a consciousness of guilt, or of having done something which injures reputation; or by that which nature or modesty prompts us to conceal. Shame is particularly excited by the disclosure of actions which, in the view of men, are mean and degrading.”

Most, if not all, of us have experienced shame in one way or another.

I come from a poor family of eight children. Were it not for the generosity of the nuns at the Catholic school I attended, we would have often gone to bed hungry. Frequently, the nuns would graciously give me a big bag of their leftover egg salad sandwiches to take home to my family. As I rode the school bus with that large shopping bag filled with the nuns’ pungent sandwiches on my lap, I felt shame. Shame because the other kids on the bus not only knew what I was carrying, but also why.  Shame because I believed the lie that poor people were inferior. 

Shame is the lie that says you’re not good enough. While guilt says I MADE a mistake, shame says I AM a mistake.  

Where does shame come from? Shame has two sources:

1-Shame can come from our own sin.
2-Shame can come from the sins of others against us.

Let’s look at each source.

First, shame can come from our own sin. When we disobey God’s Word and do something He has commanded us not to do, we feel shame because we know we have done wrong. We also feel shame because we have been found out by God–Who knows everything anyway–and shame because we may have exposed ourselves to the displeasure or scrutiny of others and, as a result, have gone down a notch in their estimation of us.

Shame from our own sin makes us want to hide. And so we do. We hide in our jobs, in our hobbies, in social media, in our relationships, in our busy lives. Anything to avoid facing the pain of our shame.

Second, shame can come from the sins of others against us. For example, our parents may have spoken negative words to us as children—words that wounded our hearts.  Have you ever heard these words as a child?

__”You’ll never amount to anything.” 

__”You’re so clumsy!”

__”You’re stupid.”

__”You’re fat.”

__”Our family is poor.”

__”No one will ever love you.”

__”I wish I never had you!”

__”You were an accident.”

__Why can’t you be like your brother? Your sister?

__”You’re ugly.”

__’You’re (You fill in the blank).”

Words such as these linger with us all of our lives, imprisoning us in shame, unless we deal with them.

One of the worst things about shame is that, if we don’t deal with it, we tend to pass it on to others, especially to the next generation. We do this by blaming them for our problems or by shaming them. For example, a mother who hates her own overweight body will often criticize her daughter’s food choices, thereby passing on to her daughter a sense of shame about her body. A husband who was belittled by his boss during the day will come home and belittle his son in order to soothe the shame inflicted on him by his boss. Unless stopped, shame passes from one generation to the next.

Shame is a painful emotion that comes from our belief that we have fallen short of the expected mark. When we sin, we have, indeed, fallen short of God’s expected mark. Romans 3: 23 says that “all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God.”

Whether our shame came from our own sin or from the sins of others, we don’t have to continue to live with it. God has provided a way out of our shame. His Name is Jesus Christ.

When we repent of our sin and receive God’s forgiveness, He cleanses us from all shame, regardless of where it originated.

Has your life been filled with shame?  If so, read this promise from the Lord to you: “Instead of your shame you will receive a double portion, and instead of disgrace you will rejoice in your inheritance” (Isaiah 61: 7).

Would you like to shed your shame and receive a double portion of honor instead? Then accept Jesus Christ, the only One Who can release you from your shame. Pray this simple prayer with me now:

“Lord Jesus, my life has been filled with shame. I don’t want to live with this pain of shame any longer. I receive You now as my Savior and Lord, as the only One Who can free me from shame. I give my shame to You and in exchange I receive a double portion of honor. Thank You, Lord, for freeing me of shame and for saving me. Amen.”

If you prayed this prayer, you are now a born-again child of God. Please write to me at info@maryanndiorio.com. I would like to send you a free booklet that will help you get started in your relationship with Christ.

In closing, my prayer for you today is this: “May God take the former shame of your life and turn it into the strength of your life.”

Before you leave, please check out my resources for overcoming shame: my non-fiction book titled You Were Made for Greatness! and my fiction series titled The Italian Chronicles whose heroine deals with shame. You will find links to both below.

Listen to the podcast here:

Follow the page-turning saga of Maria Landro as she struggles with shame.

The Italian Chronicles by MaryAnn Diorio


THE ITALIAN CHRONICLES: THE COMPLETE TRILOGY

Follow the page-turning saga of Maria Landro as she struggles with shame.

PURCHASE HERE

God made you for greatness! Learn how to become great in Christ.

Purchase your copy here.

WHERE WILL YOU GO WHEN YOU DIE?

by Dr. MaryAnn Diorio

WINNING WITH THE WORD
by Dr. MaryAnn Diorio

“Winning with the Word” is a weekly blog that will help you to be a winner in life by applying God’s principles for living the abundant life as found in the Bible, God’s manual for life.

AN INVITATION TO YOU: To follow this blog, click here.  

If this blog has blessed you, please encourage your family and friends to subscribe as well. Thank you!

______________________________________

Do you prefer listening instead of reading? Then click below on the PODCAST LINK to today’s blog post:

PODCAST: “WHERE WILL YOU GO WHEN YOU DIE?”
by Dr. MaryAnn Diorio

______________________________________

 

Hello and happy day! This is Dr. MaryAnn Diorio, your Virtual Life Coach welcoming you to Winning with the Word!.

Today I’d like to start our program by asking you a very important question. It’s a question that may at first sound negative, but in reality, it’s one of the most positive questions I could ever ask you. In fact, it may very well be the most important question anyone could ever ask you.

The question is this: Do you know where you will go when you die?

Perhaps you’ve never thought about that question before, or perhaps it has crossed your mind on occasion, but you quickly brushed it aside because you did not like to think about it. After all, no one really likes to think about death.

Do you know the reason people don’t like to think about death or even to talk about it? The reason is that the concept of death is foreign to God’s original plan for humanity. It was not something He ever intended for man to experience. On the contrary, when God created man and woman, He intended for them to experience only life forevermore. He intended them to live in total health of spirit, soul, and body, to enjoy abundant wealth. and to be happy and full of joy forever. Somewhere deep down in our hearts, we know that we were meant to experience this kind of life. We know that we were meant to live forever. Consequently, the thought of death troubles us. 

“The concept of death is foreign to God’s original purpose for humanity.”

Furthermore, because we believe that death is beyond our control, we try, in a variety of ways, to get a handle on it so that it won’t seem so frightening. Have you noticed that when you acquire knowledge about a particular topic, any fear you may have had about it loses its power over you? Well, subconsciously, we believe that if somehow we can figure out death, we will be able to master it, that if somehow we can arrive at an understanding of death, the fear of death will lose its power over us.

One of the ways we try to get a handle on death to gain some control over it is by coming up with all kinds of explanations as to what happens to us when we die. For instance, some people believe that death is simply the end of life and that there’s nothing beyond it. This belief spawns what is commonly called an Eat, drink, and be merry, for tomorrow you might die philosophy. After all, if this life is all there is, why not throw ourselves recklessly into living it by doing whatever we want.

Others believe that everyone will go to heaven because God is good, and a good God would never send anyone to Hell. Even if we’ve done terrible things during our lifetime, when it’s time to die, God will feel sorry for us and let us off the hook.

Still others believe that if they live a good life, they will make it to Heaven, although they won’t know for sure until after they die. These people are great at doing all kinds of good works, because they are convinced that the more good works they do, the better chance they will have of making it into Heaven. At the same time, however, they live with a continual undercurrent of fear and worry, because they won’t know until they die whether or not they actually made it to Heaven.

Then there’s that group of people who believe what the Bible says, which is that after we die, we go to one of two places: Heaven or Hell, and that, not only is the choice entirely up to us, but also that we make that choice while we are still on this earth. I belong to this last group.

In the Bible, God’s operating manual for humanity, Jesus says in John 3: 3 that “unless a man is born again, he cannot see the kingdom of God.” What does it mean to be born again? Simply put, to be born again means to be restored to a right relationship with God. This can be done only by accepting Jesus Christ as the means of restoring that relationship. Jesus Himself said in John 4: 6, “I am the Way, the Truth, and the Life. No one comes to the Father except through Me.” Contrary to much prevalent opinion, there is only one way to receive eternal salvation. And that way is through Jesus Christ.

In Acts 4: 12, the Bible affirms that there is no other name under Heaven given among men by which we must be saved. This means that no other name of any other god can save us–not the name of Buddha, nor the name of Allah, nor the name of Sofia or any other god or goddess. For no other god rose from the dead with power as Jesus Christ did. No other god is still alive today with the power to heal the sick, drive out demons, and raise the dead. No other god can set people free from alcoholism, drug addiction, mental illness, sickness, and disease as Jesus Christ can and still does today.

You see, Jesus Christ alone is the one true God. He was God before He came to earth. He was God while He was on the earth, and He is still God now that He is back in Heaven. According to His Word, and to the surprise of many, He will come back again as God to establish His millennial reign of peace and eventually to judge those who rejected Him.

Jesus Christ is the focal point of all history and the focal point of Christianity. You see, Christianity is not a religion. It is a vital, living, dynamic personal relationship with God through Jesus Christ, His son. When Adam and Eve sinned, they willfully severed that relationship, thus allowing sin and evil to enter the world. Without someone to rescue them, Adam and Eve were doomed to Hell and eternal punishment.

When God created Adam and Eve, He created them to live forever. It was His intention and desire for them never to die in any way–spiritually, mentally, or physically. God’s dream was that Adam and Eve would live with Him forever in total health and well-being, in peace and joy.

God’s dream, however, was temporarily thrown off course when Adam and Eve sinned against Him. At that pivotal moment in history, spiritual death entered the human race, and with spiritual death, there came also physical death. It is due to Adam and Eve’s sin that evil is present in the world today in all of its forms: wars, earthquakes, tornadoes, broken relationships, sickness, disease, and death.

When Satan tempted Eve, he thought that he would destroy God’s dream forever. But God isn’t One to let anyone or anything steal His dream. He had a backup plan to restore humanity to its original state of life. That backup plan was Jesus Christ.

You see, when Adam and Eve sinned, they sinned against God who is perfect. Since they themselves were no longer perfect, they could never pay the perfect price of restoration that the perfect God required. Only a perfect person could do that. Since no such person existed on earth, God, in His great love, sent His own Son, Jesus Christ, to be that Perfect Person and to pay the perfect price for our sin. Because Jesus was God, He was perfect. Because He was also man, He could represent humanity and pay the price for our sin.

And that’s exactly what He did when He died on the Cross. He took our sin, and the punishment that goes with it, so that we could be restored to a right relationship with God the Father. In return, He gave us His righteousness;  that is, His right standing with God.

But, in order to experience the benefits of what Jesus did for us, we have to accept His gift of salvation. If I offer you a gift, but you don’t know that I’m offering it to you, or you don’t believe me when I say that I’m offering it to you, you won’t accept it and it won’t be yours. Or, if I offer you a gift and you refuse to take it, it won’t be yours.

The same is true of salvation. Jesus is offering you the gift of eternal life that He earned for you through His death on the Cross and through His resurrection from the grave. But you have to believe that He died on that Cross and that He rose from that grave for you personally. In fact, He would have done it if you were the only person on the face of the earth.

Listen to what the Bible says in John 3: 16 about why God sent Jesus Christ to die in your place: “For God so loved the world that He gave His only begotten Son, that whoever believes in Him should not perish, but have everlasting life.” The reason that God sent Jesus to die for you is pure and simple. God loves you! He loves you right now, this very moment, exactly as you are and exactly where you are. He loves you if you’re on drugs, if you’re an alcoholic, if you’re addicted to pornography, or if you smoke 30 packs of cigarettes a day. He loves you if you’re sitting in a prison cell, or even on death row. He loves you if you’re divorced, if you’ve embezzled from your company, even if you’ve killed someone. What you’ve done does not change the truth that God loves you!

You see, God’s love for you is unconditional. That means that you do not have to earn it. In fact, it’s impossible for you to earn God’s love. There is nothing you could ever do–no good work, no act of service, no huge charitable contribution–that could ever earn you God’s love. You could never be good enough to earn God’s love. So, stop trying to earn it. Just accept the fact that God loves you just as you are right now and no matter what situation you’re in. You could be in the midst of the worst sin, the worst problem, the worst mess, and still, God loves you. You could have committed the worst crime, told the worst lie, stolen the most money, yet still, God loves you.

I know that this is a difficult concept to grasp, especially since we live in a world where mostly everything has a condition attached to it. Also, it is a rare person who has grown up in a home where he or she was loved unconditionally. Even though your parents may not have meant any harm, they still may have implied through their words or their actions that their love for you was contingent on your performance.

For example, perhaps they accepted you when you got good grades, but they disapproved of you when you didn’t. Or perhaps your father accepted you as long as you played Little League, but when you told him you wanted to be an artist, he disapproved and grew distant. Whatever your situation may have been, these kinds of experiences can make you skeptical when it comes to believing that God’s love for you is unconditional, that He loves you with no strings attached. Nevertheless, it’s true. God loves you just because you are you! It’s a concept that we cannot grasp with our minds. We have to grasp it with our hearts.

Romans 5: 8  tells us that God proved His love for us by sending Jesus to die for us while we were still sinners. You see, it’s the sinner who needs a Savior, not the righteous person. It’s the sick person who needs a doctor, not the healthy person. And since every human being is born into this world spiritually sick, we all need a Savior. The Bible confirms this in Romans 3:23 when it says that “all have sinned and come short of the glory of God.”

So, if you are a sinner, you are a candidate for salvation. You are a candidate for Christ’s gift of eternal life through Jesus Christ. No matter what kind of a mess your life is in, you can receive forgiveness of your sins, and total restoration of all that sin has stolen from you. You can receive the love of Jesus Christ that makes you whole.

I want to emphasize the word receive because that’s what it takes on your part, to experience God’s love in your life. The Bible says in John 1: 12, that “as many as received Him, to them, He gave the right to become children of God”. So it takes both believing and receiving to be saved. You have to believe in your heart that Jesus is the Son of God, that He died on the cross for you and that He rose again from the dead, and you have to receive personally His precious gift of salvation.

If you have never received God’s love gift to you in the person of Jesus Christ, I invite you to do so now. Just repeat this simple prayer after me.

Lord Jesus, I come to you just as I am. I admit that I am a sinner in need of your mercy and grace. I believe that you are the Son of God, that you died for me, and that you rose again on the third day. I invite you now to come into my life. I receive You as my personal Savior, and as the Lord of my life. Make of me all that You created me to be. Amen.

If you sincerely prayed this prayer, you are now a born again follower of Jesus Christ. I invite you to write to me at drmaryann@maryanndiorio.com. I would like to send you a little booklet that will help you get started in your Christian life. I also invite you to visit my website at maryanndiorio.com. And if you don’t attend a church, ask God to lead you to the church of His choice for you where you can be blessed and fed with the Word of God, and where you can use the gifts God has given you to bless others.

Until next time, remember that God loves you just as you are, and just where you are, and that He will help you to keep on winning with the Word!

Do you prefer listening instead of reading? Then click below on the PODCAST LINK to today’s blog post:

PODCAST: “WHERE WILL YOU GO WHEN YOU DIE?”
by Dr. MaryAnn Diorio

______________________________________

Now, it’s YOUR turn: What about you? Do you know where you will go when you die? Do you want to know? Please share your comments in the Comments Box below. Thank you!

TWEETABLE:  “WHERE WILL YOU GO WHEN YOU DIE?” by Dr. MaryAnn Diorio @DrMaryAnnDiorio (Click to Tweet)

 ____________________________________________

To be sure you don’t miss any of my future blog posts, please subscribe to Winning with the Word. CLICK HERE

For a list of my blog posts by date, please click here.

____________________________________________

JOIN MY TEAM and get my monthly newsletter delivered to your inbox. Each month you will receive an update about my writing ministry and my family plus an opportunity to win a free e-book. You will also receive a special family recipe straight from my kitchen to your. So, don’t delay! Sign up now by clicking here!

____________________________________________

Check out my You-Tube series, YOU WERE MADE FOR GREATNESS!, based on my popular book by the same title.  

_______________________________________________

NOW AVAILABLE FOR PURCHASE:  In Black and White: A Novel

“Can endurance and faith sustain the love between a white woman and a black man as they are threatened by rejection, violence, and racial injustice? Can love alone reconcile their starkly different worlds, lighting the way to a bright future together? 

AMAZON
APPLE iPAD
BARNES & NOBLE
DRAFT2DIGITAL
KOBO
SMASHWORDS

NOTE: In full disclosure, the above are affiliate links. This means I earn a small commission on each sale made through these links. 

_______________________________________________

If you found this post helpful, please forward it to a friend. Thank you! You may also be interested in reading the following popular posts:

Living in a Violent World”

“How to Handle Offense”

Is the Apocalypse Near?” 

“Convergence: Clear Sign of the End Times”

“The Rise of Wicca, Witches, and Warlocks” 

Please check our archives in the right sidebar for older posts on a variety of topics. You may also search for a particular topic in the search box at the top right. 

For additional encouragement, check out my podcasts at the following links:

A Moment with MaryAnn – Podcasts on Living the Good Life

Winning with the Word Podcast Series

Write Your Heart Out! – Podcasts for Writers

Please tell your family and friends about this blog and my other resources, and please pass this post on to them. Thank you!

___________________________________________

Copyright 20111-2019 by Dr. MaryAnn Diorio. All Rights Reserved. This article may not be published or printed in any form whatsoever without the written permission of Dr. MaryAnn Diorio. You may contact her at info@maryanndiorio.com to request permission.

Amazon.com Required Disclosure: MaryAnn Diorio is a participant in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program, an affiliate advertising program designed to provide a means for sites to earn advertising fees by advertising and linking to Amazon.com.

Disclaimer: This site uses cookies. Your continued use of this site constitutes your consent to our use of cookies. 

The Dangers of the Occult

by Dr. MaryAnn Diorio

WINNING WITH THE WORD
by Dr. MaryAnn Diorio

“Winning with the Word” is a weekly blog that will help you to be a winner in life by applying God’s principles
for living the abundant life as found in the Bible, God’s manual for life.

AN INVITATION TO YOU: To follow this blog, click here.  

If this blog has blessed you, please encourage your family and friends to subscribe as well. Thank you!

______________________________________

Do you prefer listening instead of reading? Then click below on the PODCAST LINK to today’s blog post:

PODCAST: “THE DANGERS OF THE OCCULT”
by Dr. MaryAnn Diorio

 

 

______________________________________

 

With Halloween just around the corner, I think it appropriate today to discuss the dangers of the occult. While occult practices are widespread in our country throughout the year, they become particularly intense around Halloween, since Halloween is considered a religious holiday, if you will, among those involved in the occult.

Webster’s Dictionary defines the occult as “matters involving the action or influence of supernatural agencies.” I’d like to clarify this definition a bit by saying that the occult involves the action or influence of demonic supernatural agencies. Angels are supernatural agencies, but they have nothing at all to do with the occult.

Many people today are involved in the occult and don’t even know it. Perhaps you are one of them. Let me ask you a few questions.

  • Do you start your day by reading your horoscope?
  • Do you call the psychic hotline when you’re facing a problem?
  • Have you gone to a fortune teller, attended a séance, or spoken to what you thought was the spirit of a dead relative?
  • Have you played with a Ouija board or experimented with levitation?

If you’ve done or are doing any of these things, then you are involved in the occult, and you are in serious danger. So, listen very carefully. 

If you’ve experimented with the occult to any degree whatsoever, even if just once, you’ve probably encountered forces outside the natural realm. Most likely, these forces, also called evil spirits, have produced fear in your life, perhaps even nightmares or panic attacks. In some cases, these evil spirits may have even taken over your personality. If so, I want to encourage you today, for there is a way for you to be delivered from the influence of evil spirits.

The Bible God’s instruction manual for man, in Deuteronomy 18: 9-12, has this to say about the occult: “Let no one be found among you who sacrifices his son or daughter in the fire, who practices divination or sorcery, interprets omens, engages in witchcraft or casts spells, or who is a medium or spiritist, or who consults the dead. Anyone who does these things is detestable to the Lord.”

If you are involved in the occult, you are on a road that will surely lead you to destruction and death unless you make an about-face. Why? Because the occult is the realm of Satan and his demons, and involvement with Satan and his demons always leads to spiritual and often physical death. Demons are fallen angels that sided with Satan when he rebelled against God. As a result of their rebellion, they were thrown out of Heaven and now roam the earth enticing unsuspecting people into their evil traps.

The primary goal of demons is to get you to doubt what God says in the Bible. In other words, to get you to doubt God. This is exactly how Satan tempted Eve in the Garden of Eden. He got her to doubt the truth of what God had said to her.

Let’s take a look at this passage in the third chapter of Genesis: “Now the serpent was more crafty than any of the wild animals the Lord God had made. He said to the woman, ‘Did God really say you must not eat from any tree in the garden?'”

Let’s stop here for a moment and notice the key to Satan’s strategy of deception. Satan tried to plant a seed of doubt in Eve’s mind as to the integrity of God’s character.  Satan asked, “Did God really say?” Up until this point, Eve had never questioned God. She simply believed everything He said.

But Satan’s question to her planted a seed of doubt in her mind, a seed that Eve chose to receive. In so doing, she shifted her focus from what God said to what Satan said. In other words, she chose to question God’s integrity.

Satan has not changed since he tempted Eve. He still uses the same trick to get us to fall into his trap. For instance, he’ll say to you, “Can it really hurt to play the Ouija board just this one time? After all, it’s only a game.” Or, “How bad could it be for me to go to the séance with my friends? After all, I’m just going to watch. I don’t plan to participate.”

Getting back to Eve in the Garden, now that Satan has planted a seed of doubt in her mind as to God’s integrity, he brazenly contradicts what God said to Eve. Listen, as I read, beginning with Genesis 3: 2: “The woman said to the serpent, ‘We may eat fruit from the trees in the garden, but God did say you must not eat fruit from the tree that is in the middle of the garden and you must not touch it or you will die.”

“You will not surely die,” the serpent said to the woman. “For God knows that when you eat of it, your eyes will be opened and you will be like God, knowing good and evil.”

Here, Satan makes an outright attack on the integrity of God’s Word. He says to Eve, “You won’t die. God told you not to eat the fruit because He doesn’t want you to be like Him, knowing good and evil.” In his craftiness, Satan tried to make Eve think that God was holding out on her, that He was keeping something good from her. Satan tried to make God look bad, and Eve fell for Satan’s deception.

Satan hasn’t changed his tactics since Adam and Eve’s day. He still tries to get us to doubt the truth of God’s Word. He still tries to make us think that God is holding out on us, that God wants to keep something good from us, that God wants to keep us from having fun or from enjoying life. Satan still tries to make God look bad, and people are still falling into Satan’s wicked traps.

One of his most subtle traps is the trap of the occult. Satan sets this trap by preying on a person’s desire to know the future. He presents the occult as a seemingly fun way to determine what lies ahead. What Satan does not tell you is that once you’ve bitten his bait, you are trapped and poisoned for life unless you turn to God and repent.

We mentioned that the primary goal of demons is to get you to doubt the truth of God’s Word. Their primary weapon in attempting to achieve this goal is deception. How do demons deceive? They deceive primarily through your thoughts, through what you think.

You see, demons talk to you. They talk to you by planting thoughts in your mind. Thoughts that put God and His Word in a bad light. Thoughts that question the good character of God.

For instance, regarding the occult, demons will try to convince you that involvement in the occult has no serious consequences. They may tell you that playing the Ouija board is only a game or that reading your horoscope just helps you to make wise decisions about your future. But, beware! Like Satan, their leader, demons are liars by nature. And speaking of Satan, the Bible tells us in John 8: 44 that Satan is “a liar and the father of lies.” In other words, there is no truth in Satan, nor is there any truth in his demons.

So, whenever demons speak to you, you can be sure that they are deceiving you.

But, you may ask, “How can I know when a demon is speaking to me? That’s an excellent question. Here is the answer. You can know when a demon is speaking to you when the thought in your mind contradicts what God says in the Bible. So, you see how critically important it is to know what God says in the Bible.

The Bible is the voice of God speaking to you. In order to recognize the voice of a demon, you first have to know the voice of God. And the way to learn the voice of God and to recognize it is by studying the Bible.

Bank tellers learn to recognize counterfeit money by handling only real money. They’ve become so good at recognizing real money that when they pick up a counterfeit bill, they can immediately feel the difference. The real money that they’ve handled is the absolute standard against which bank tellers determine whether what they are handling is real or counterfeit money.

Likewise, the Bible is the absolute standard against which we measure the truth or falsehood of a thought. When we fill our hearts and minds with the true thoughts found in the Bible, we will immediately recognize a false thought that enters our mind. We will immediately know that it is a thought put there by Satan and that it is a lie.

Remember, if a thought or a statement does not line up with the Bible, then it is false. Get rid of it, put it out of your mind immediately and replace it with a true thought from God’s Word.

If you are involved in the occult or have only tried it once, here are some things you must do: 

1. Run to God and repent of your sin. God is full of mercy, and He will gladly forgive you. If you have never accepted Jesus Christ as your Savior, do so. In a few moments, I will show you how.

2.  Read the Bible every day. The Bible is your spiritual food. Just as your body needs food in order to function properly, so does your spirit. The Bible is food for your spirit.

3. Find a church that teaches the Word of God without compromise. Sad to say, there are some churches today where the pastor preaches what the people want to hear. Stay away from that kind of church. Go to a church where the pastor boldly preaches the full Word of God.

4. Seek deliverance from evil spirits if you are oppressed by fear, nightmares, panic attacks, etc. Involvement in the occult opens doors for evil spirits to enter your life. While in most cases, these evil spirits oppress your soul and your body, in the case of someone who is not born again, these evil spirits can actually possess the spirit of that person.

A born again believer in Jesus Christ can never be demon possessed. He can, however, be demon oppressed.

So, the first step in being delivered from evil spirits is to be born again by accepting Jesus Christ as your Savior and Lord. Then you may need to seek the help of a pastor or a born again Christian who has experience in casting out demonic spirits. If you have trouble finding such a person, please contact me, and I will point you in the right direction. My email address is drmaryann@maryanndiorio.com.

In wrapping up today’s program, I’d like to assure you that no matter how deeply you may be involved in the occult, God can and will set you free. Even if you are a high priest of Satan listening to this broadcast, God can and will deliver you.

You see, God is far greater and far more powerful than Satan. In fact, God originally created Satan as the beautiful Lucifer, the leader of praise and worship in Heaven. Lucifer, however, chose to rebel against God, and, in so doing, became Satan.

When Jesus Christ died and rose from the dead, He regained for mankind the legal right to the earth that Satan had stolen from Adam and Eve. So, today every born again believer in Jesus Christ has been restored to the same position of authority over the earth that Adam and Eve originally had. Moreover, every born again believer in Jesus Christ has been given power and authority over Satan and all his demons.

In Luke 10: 19, Jesus said, “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.”

Wouldn’t you like to have that power today? Wouldn’t you like to be able to drive Satan and his demons out of your life? You can by accepting Jesus Christ as your personal Savior and Lord. When you receive Him, you receive His power. But not only do you receive His power, you receive everything He earned for you by dying on the Cross for you.

You receive forgiveness, healing, prosperity, love, joy, peace, restoration and so many other wonderful benefits that I don’t have time to mention them all. Truly, if you’re looking for good benefits, there are none better than what you receive when you receive Jesus Christ.

So, pray this simple prayer with me now and break Satan’s power over your life. Repeat after me:

Lord Jesus, I come to You just as I am. I admit that I am a sinner in need of Your mercy and grace. I believe that You are the Son of God, that You died for me, and that You rose again on the third day. I invite You now to come into my life. I receive You as my personal Savior and as the Lord of my life. Make of me all that You created me to be. Amen.

If you sincerely prayed this prayer, you are now a born again follower of Jesus Christ. I invite you to write to me at drmaryann@maryanndiorio.com. I would like to send you a little booklet that will help get you started in your Christian walk. In addition, I invite you to visit me at my website, maryanndiorio.com.

Thank you so much for listening. This is Dr. MaryAnn Diorio, your virtual life coach, reminding you that God loves you just as you are and just where you are and that He will help you to keep on winning with the Word!

Now, it’s YOUR turn: What about you? Have you been involved in the occult? Do you want to get free? Please share your comments in the Comments Box below. Thank you!

TWEETABLE:  “THE DANGERS OF THE OCCULT” by Dr. MaryAnn Diorio @DrMaryAnnDiorio (Click to Tweet)

 

Click below to listen to the podcast of today’s post:

PODCAST: “THE DANGERS OF THE OCCULT”
by Dr. MaryAnn Diorio

 

To be sure you don’t miss any of my future blog posts, please subscribe to Winning with the Word. CLICK HERE

For a list of my blog posts by date, please click here.

____________________________________________

JOIN MY TEAM and get my monthly newsletter delivered to your inbox. Each month you will receive an update about my writing ministry and my family plus an opportunity to win a free e-book. You will also receive a special family recipe straight from my kitchen to your. So, don’t delay! Sign up now by clicking here!

____________________________________________

Check out my You-Tube series, YOU WERE MADE FOR GREATNESS!, based on my popular book by the same title.  

_______________________________________________

Soon-to-be-released: In Black and White: A Novel

“Can endurance and faith sustain the love between a white woman and a black man as they are threatened by rejection, violence, and racial injustice? Can love alone reconcile their starkly different worlds, lighting the way to a bright future together? Find out in MaryAnn Diorio’s forthcoming novel, IN BLACK AND WHITE, soon to be released. Stay tuned!”

Now available for preorder.  Just click here.

 

 

 

 

_______________________________________________

 

If you found this post helpful, please forward it to a friend. Thank you! You may also be interested in reading the following popular posts:

“Convergence: Clear Sign of the End Times”

“The Rise of Wicca, Witches, and Warlocks” 

Please check our archives in the right sidebar for older posts on a variety of topics. You may also search for a particular topic in the search box at the top right. 

For additional encouragement, check out my podcasts at the following links:

A Moment with MaryAnn – Podcasts on Living the Good Life

Winning with the Word Podcast Series

Write Your Heart Out! – Podcasts for Writers

Please tell your family and friends about this blog and my other resources, and please pass this post on to them. Thank you!

_____________________________________________________________________________________

Copyright 20111-2019 by Dr. MaryAnn Diorio. All Rights Reserved. This article may not be published or printed in any form whatsoever without the written permission of Dr. MaryAnn Diorio. You may contact her at info@maryanndiorio.com to request permission.

Amazon.com Required Disclosure: MaryAnn Diorio is a participant in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program, an affiliate advertising program designed to provide a means for sites to earn advertising fees by advertising and linking to Amazon.com.

Disclaimer: This site uses cookies. Your continued use of this site constitutes your consent to our use of cookies.