When You Trust Satan’s Lies More Than God’s Truth

Cacophony and sin ensues when you hear God's voice and yet tune in to what Satan is suggesting!

Isaiah 55:10-11 – For as the rain cometh down, and the snow from heaven, and returneth not thither, but watereth the earth, and maketh it bring forth and bud, that it may give seed to the sower, and bread to the eater: So shall my word be that goeth forth out of my mouth: it shall not return unto me void, but it shall accomplish that which I please, and it shall prosper in the thing whereto I sent it.

I like to think of God’s Word or Truth as a sound wave that goes forth. It starts at His mouth and proceeds outwards to its object. The bible says that His word will not return to Him void but that it will accomplish that whereto He sent it. I take this to mean that when God speaks/sends out a word, He doesn’t intend on it returning to Him as not completed. He intends on it doing its job.

God’s Word is spoken. Sometimes it is written down (like in the case of the Words written in the bible by the hands of men). Also, we know that His words that He spoke in the beginning (in the Creation of the heavens and the earth) were recorded the book of Genesis. The laws He spoke were written by Moses. God says things that are sometimes written down to help others at that time and in the distant future.

2 Timothy 3:16 – All scripture is given by inspiration of God, and is profitable for doctrine, for reproof, for correction, for instruction in righteousness

So we know that God Himself did not get a quill pin and inkwell and personally write the scriptures. They were written down by men after God or Jesus SPOKE it first. Sure, some of it might have been supernaturally downloaded into their thoughts and then they wrote it from there. But even when you think of a thought, it comes as something you hear in your head.

When God speaks, He expects people to agree with Him. I don’t think God said one thing in the Bible that He would have liked His people to disagree with. God speaks truth, and He wants His people to agree with that truth.

As I said earlier, I like to think of God’s word as this very simple thing: A SOUND WAVE. I mean every sound/noise/voice/piece of music you hear is just that – A SOUND WAVE. Every spoken word is a wave. I notice upon reading the scriptures that God doesn’t change His mind very often. Jonah comes to mind in particular. We know that God asked Jonah to preach to the country of Nineveh to repent of their sins or else God would destroy them. Jonah was told THIS particular “sound wave” ONCE, but Jonah decided to board a ship to Tarshish to avoid his calling.

Jonah 1:1 Now the WORD of the Lord came unto Jonah the son of Amitai, saying, 2. Arise, go to Nineveh, that great city, and cry against it; for the wickedness is come up before me.

Verse 2 is the first sound wave that God sent out towards Jonah’s ears. He directed it right at Jonah, AND He also expected Jonah to duplicate this message or sound wave to Nineveh. If I’m not mistaken, I’m guessing God wanted this sound wave to go to every Ninevite. If God had meant for the sound wave to stop at Jonah, the story would have stopped there. But God intended for His word to accomplish that whereto He sent it. Let’s see if God changed His sound wave in Jonah chapter 3. In other words, let’s see if God changed His mind about what He wanted Jonah to say.

Jonah 3:1 – And the word of the Lord came unto Jonah the SECOND time saying, 2. Arise, go unto Nineveh, that great city, and preach unto it the preaching that I bid thee. 3. So Jonah arose, and went unto Nineveh, ACCORDING TO THE WORD of the Lord.

Looks like God didn’t change His mind.

SO Jonah had to change His mind. And it took something traumatic for him to do it (just as is the case with some of us nowadays). It took Him going through a very bad sea tempest and being swallowed by a huge fish for him to agree with God’s first SOUND WAVE!
My point here is that God is not going to change His mind to get on YOUR opposing sound wave. If anything, He’s going to move the circumstances so that you WANT to get back on His sound wave – if not to make you beg and plead to be back on it! God is in control of everything BUT your freewills. So since He can control everything (in this case, it was the wind, the sea, and the huge fish), He can manipulate them to get you back on the RIGHT sound wave. And that sound wave is the original word that He sent forth.

And that is how I now see everything that God says. It is THE ORIGINAL sound wave. It is the PUREST sound wave. The message remained the same in Jonah 1:2 and Jonah 3:2. Actually, the 3:2 sound wave was just amplification of the 1:2 sound wave because He said, “preach unto it the preaching that I bid thee [the first time].”

And the same goes for you. God is not going to change His sound waves for you. If God told you to do something or NOT to do something, you need to comply/obey/agree/vibe/tune in 100%. When you don’t agree with His sound wave, I’ll tell you what results. CACOPHONY. The etymology of that word is “bad sound”. I’m sure you all have been to a church service where there was a choir that sounded great EXCEPT for one person singing off-key. Everyone was on the same sound wave except for that one person who was singing out of tune. Although that person might have been singing the same words to the same song at the same speed with the same intent, their voice was sending out a different sound wave that was clashing with the main sound wave. This is what happened with Adam and Eve.

Genesis 1:3 And God said, Let there be light: and there was light…

In the beginning, we know that God sent out sound waves that caused things be made. The atoms obeyed hHis voice and intentions. He made the heavens and the earth by simply saying, “Let there be _____,” and then it was so. We also see that in the beginning of the bible, God sent out another sound wave telling Adam what to do and what not to do. We especially remember about what God told Adam NOT to do regarding the tree of the knowledge of good and evil.

Genesis 2:16-17 – And the LORD God commanded the man, saying, Of every tree of the garden thou mayest freely eat: But of the tree of the knowledge of good and evil, thou shalt not eat of it: for in the day that thou eatest thereof thou shalt surely die.

At first, Adam was TOTALLY vibing with God’s sound wave. He believed it totally. He believed totally that he would SURELY die if he disobeyed God’s command about that particular tree. And it was easy to believe God because Adam had no reason not to trust God AND because it was the ONLY sound wave he had heard regarding that tree. Eve was also told about it, and she believed it too. We believe that either Adam or God shared this sound wave with Eve. And Eve went on to repeat the sound wave it to the snake. This wave had a wavelength that we would call “in phase” – meaning all the sound waves being heard regarding the tree were in sync. So if everyone was on one accord, where did everything get all screwy?

What happened? Weren’t they all kind of like a choir? God, Adam, and Eve singing in perfect harmony. All singing the same perfect and pure sound wave of “do not eat from the tree of the knowledge of good and evil or you will die!”? I’ll tell you what happened. Eve heard ANOTHER wave. She heard another sound wave whose wavelength is what we would call “180 degrees out of phase” (meaning it cancelled out the first wave). It flatlined the first wave. It cancelled out God’s voice! And as we all know, Eve and Adam surely did die eventually. They were cancelled out because they totally disagreed with God’s sound wave in order to allow and vibe with Satan’s total opposite and lying sound wave. How many times have you let Satan’s sound wave cancel out God’s?

Genesis 3:1 – Now the serpent was more subtil than any beast of the field which the LORD God had made. And he said unto the woman, Yea, hath God said, Ye shall not eat of every tree of the garden? 2 And the woman said unto the serpent, We may eat of the fruit of the trees of the garden: 3 But of the fruit of the tree which is in the midst of the garden, God hath said, Ye shall not eat of it, neither shall ye touch it, lest ye die. 4 And the serpent said unto the woman, Ye shall not surely die: 5 For God doth know that in the day ye eat thereof, then your eyes shall be opened, and ye shall be as gods, knowing good and evil. 6 And when the woman saw that the tree was good for food, and that it was pleasant to the eyes, and a tree to be desired to make one wise, she took of the fruit thereof, and did eat, and gave also unto her husband with her; and he did eat.

If you repeat God, the Word is more powerful in your life! If you disagree with God, you will be unfruitful.

Let me explain what I meant by the phrases “in phase” and “180 degrees out of phase”. When a wave’s wavelength is “in phase”, it is known as a constructive wave. When you and another person’s sound waves are “in phase” or match one another, then your combined sound produces a more powerful wave or sound; the word for that is “amplified”. But when your sound wave is “180 degrees out of phase”, they cancel one another out. That wave is known as a destructive wave. A destructive wave CANCELS OUT the one that is 180 degrees out of phase with it. The in phase waves can fit with each other, but 180 degrees out of phase waves can’t fit with each other. That’s why there is no room for Satan’s thoughts and words in your Christian life. It only serves to cancel out God’s voice!

Notice how with the in phase waves, the combined sound is stronger (louder). One singer cannot sound nearly as powerful as a 200-member choir. That soloist only has one sound wave sent out. A microphone and yelling can make her voice sound bigger and more powerful. But a 200-member choir can do the same and will, of course, sound bigger and stronger and powerful. So God, Adam, and Eve’s voice combined into a powerful ONE SOUND WAVE that was on ONE ACCORD.

BUT!

But silly Eve let a snake let her sing off key. Then Adam agreed and sang off key too. So they disobeyed God’s sound wave and ate the forbidden fruit. Selah!

Notice in the pictures above that the two 180 degree out of phase waves will cancel each other out. So first Satan had to get Eve to cancel out the original sound wave she was “vibing” with. So once he lied to her real good and said, “Ye shall not SURELY die,” Eve decided to vibe with that wicked, lying sound wave. So it cancelled out God’s voice in her life. She was now left to her own devices. No God’s sound wave to ride on. She was left with just silence and her own fleshly desires. Without God’s voice to lead and guide her, she was out on a limb. And we know that without God’s guidance (either in speech or in ink), we make bad decisions just like Eve did. God already made the choice for her in the beginning. Well, I won’t say He MADE it for her, but He did let her know which choice to make. But she wanted to rebel and get on her own sound wave of “Be like gods! Know the difference between good and evil!” And she, he, and we paid dearly for it. It’s amazing how one person not tuning into God’s voice can affect so many others in a negative way also.
I Corinthians 2:10-11 – But God hath revealed them unto us by his Spirit…the things of God knoweth no man, but the Spirit of God.

But God is so kind to us. He knows we’re just as dumb as Eve and Adam were. After all, they are our GREAT GREAT GREAT GREAT….. grandparents. So if they heard straight from God’s mouth not to do something and yet did it anyway, you know we’re going to screw up too because unlike Adam and Eve, most of us haven’t heard directly from God. So God was so kind as to have many of His “sound waves” written in a book for us in what is known as the Holy Bible. Most of His sound waves were written in the Old Testament because many of the OT prophets quoted Him and because there are more and longer books in the OT. Moses wrote out the Mosaic laws God told him to write. Then in the New Testament, Matthew, Mark, Luke, and John wrote out Jesus’ words (which in some bibles are printed in red ink for easy reference). Then the other New Testament writers wrote what the Holy Spirit led them to write. The Holy Spirit knows the mind of God. It’s His spirit. So what the Holy Spirit says is only what God would agree with. God was so kind as to give us sound waves to follow.

With my new perspective on sound waves, I’m starting to see sin a little differently also. The way I now see it is that when you sin, you have chosen to tune in to a different sound wave other than God’s original sound wave regarding a particular matter. For example, Eve was tuned in to “FM radio” (God’s sound) and then she decided to switch to AM (Satan the Serpent’s sound). So when they cancelled each other out, she kept tuned in to what she heard on the AM station and so she ate the fruit. Then she convinced Adam to tune in and eat too.

Likewise with us today, God’s Word will say a clear sound about a certain matter. For example, the bible is clearly against homosexuality. God sends out one distinct, clear, pure sound about that. There should be no practicing homosexual Christians. BUT there are. And there are probably a lot. And the reason is because they are not living according to that ONE sound because that sound has been contaminated by other waves. There’s been “interference” so to speak. You know how if you have an AM/FM radio that when you’re rotating the little dial from one station to the next? Well you can sometimes hear two different radio stations at the same time. That’s interference. And you have to move the dial very slowly so that you don’t pass over one station to the next one. You want just that station.

We have to be the same way. Interference happens a lot, especially in America. God will send out one sound wave about homosexuality, but when we turn on American TV, we hear another station saying that’s it’s okay if you’re in love. God will send out one sound about lying, and we’ll hear another station interfering in a movie saying that you can lie to get ahead. Well, God doesn’t send conflicting messages. He is not the author of confusion. If there is confusion in your life about certain topics, it did not originate with God. God sends out only one message about His opinions. Find out from the bible what that opinion is. CHRISTIANS NEED TO TUNE INTO THE ONE STATION GOD IS SENDING OUT HIS SOUND WAVES ON!

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Two Reasons You Can’t Seem to Stop Sinning

Does something have a hold on you in the spiritual realm that keeps you sinning?

What is it that REALLY keeps you sinning?

If you’re like me, you’ve tried your hardest to stop some sins. You’ve begged God to help you to stop. Some of you have great difficulty with resisting promiscuity, lying, gossiping, fighting, and a host of other sins. It really sucks when you engage in behaviors that you are 100% against and yet seem 100% incapable of stopping it. You would think that with the power of the Holy Ghost, every believer would be able to immediately and easily stop every sin, but there are two things I learned that can keep us in sin bondage.

I learned from a book called “Breaking the Power” written by Liberty Savard. It taught me that almost all people have unmet needs, unhealed hurts, and unresolved issues, and that some people will do the craziest things to have those needs met, those hurts healed, and those issues resolved.

While watching Sid Roth’s “It’s Supernatural” TV show, the guest on there was telling of an account of when he was praying for a particular college campus. He said that while he was praying against certain things like rage, perversion, etc. that he knew was rampant on the campus, he felt a block in his spirit. He said he just couldn’t seem to get a breakthrough in prayer. Then God gave him a revelation of what was going on on the college campus in the invisible, spiritual realm. I’ll try to describe what he said as best I can. He said that what was revealed to him was a spiritual, evil beast that was plaguing the campus. It had two tentacles on either end of it that touched together at the tip. Each of the two tentacle had different appendages on them. And every appendage had a name on it that represented different evils like rage, perversion, and others. The man said that when he prayed, the little appendages on the two tentacles would lean backwards like a leaf blowing backwards on a tree limb in the wind. But when he stopped praying, the appendages would straighten back up on the tentacle. The little appendages of vices would not come off! And it showed the man that his prayers were being blocked because the little appendages were not coming off and thus they were still drawing their power from the beast.

God brought this man’s attention to two twig-like things that kept each evil attached to the tentacles. Every appendage had two little twigs that kept it latched onto the beast’s tentacles. They were kind of like two little legs that were connecting the evil appendages to the two tentacles. And it was the the two little legs that kept the man unable from breaking the evil power from plaguing the university. God let the man know that the names of each legs were actually two spirits that caused all the evils in the world to continue to be powerful in people’s lives even after serious prayer.

Those two spirits were INSECURITY and INFERIORITY.

In a Christian counseling book I had bought, low self-worth and rejection seemed to cause most of the reasons why people were coming in for counseling. Low self-esteem and rejection are two MAJOR issues in the world. No wonder because so many kids are abused by parents. And so many wives and husbands get divorced by their spouses. And if you notice what the media keeps pumping into us, they’re messages of LOSE WEIGHT, WEAR THIS TO MAKE YOU LOOK MORE BEAUTIFUL, GET THIS CREAM TO STOP YOUR WRINKLES FROM AGING YOU, GET THIS MAKE-UP TO MAKE YOUR SKIN BEAUTIFUL, DRIVE THIS CAR TO MAKE YOU POPULAR! We are literally bombarded with MILLIONS of images and messages in advertisements that have the purpose of doing TWO THINGS. To make you purchase their product or service BASED ON THE WHETHER OR NOT they can cause you to feel INSECURE and INFERIOR.

Let’s go to Genesis – the very first book of the Holy Bible. Genesis contains the FIRST account of how inferiority and insecurity led a human being to sin. You see, in the Garden of Eden, the truth of who Eve was in God was SECURE. She also was NOT INFERIOR because she had no competition, of course, and she had never heard that she was lacking anything as far as looks or intelligence was concerned. Eve only had one source of truth. That was God. God’s Word. Whatever God’s word said was truth to Adam and Eve. What God said was all there was to know! So if God said, “Don’t do this or you will die,” Eve believed it 100% because was the only thing she knew.

Let’s use our imagination for a minute. Suppose that ever since you were born, you never left the house, never watched TV, and never read anything ever since you were born. And let’s suppose your mom told you, “Sherry, your body is not made to survive outside. You will die the second you step foot outside. The only air your lungs can tolerate is the air in this house. If you step past this threshold, you will die immediately.” I assure you that you would NEVER leave the house! You’d only leave if you were suicidal. You would have no reason to second guess your mom because she would be your only source of truth. BUT you might leave your house if a visitor stopped by and asked, “Hey, Sherry, why don’t you ever leave the house? It’s not like you’ll die or anything. Come on out! The air is fine!” Only then would you leave the house IF this visitor said that AND IF you were NOT SECURE in what your mom said AND if you didn’t TRUST your mom. That visitor gave you doubts about the validity of what your mom said. That visitor gave you reason to second guess the only truth you knew concerning outside air. That visitor made you unsure of your mom and her motives. And that visitor would spark your curiosity and may cause you to ask yourself, “I wonder what’s out there that my mom didn’t want me to experience. It must be something good.” Remember that Eve too thought God was withholding something good from her because Satan told her that the fruit would make her wise and open up her eyes like a god.

Genesis 3:4-6 – And the serpent said unto the woman, Ye shall not surely die: For God doth know that in the day ye eat thereof, then your eyes shall be opened, and ye shall be as gods, knowing good and evil. And when the woman saw that the tree was good for food, and that it was pleasant to the eyes, and a tree to be desired to make one wise, she took of the fruit thereof, and did eat, and gave also unto her husband with her; and he did eat.

Nothing good comes of insecurity! Get rid of it!

So that passage effectively covers the insecure part. Humans are designed to want to feel secure. That’s why babies lose it if Mommy is gone for too long. That’s why husbands get homicidally paranoid if their wives are out too late. That’s why employees freak out if their boss calls them into their office. That’s why people get nervous when their doctor has a puzzled expression on his/her face when looking at their x-rays. HUMANS NEED SECURITY. Humans HATE to be insecure or unsure about anything. Fears are caused when we’re not sure of what’s going to happen to us next.

So when Satan causes you to feel unsure, you will reach out for anything to stabilize you. That can be drugs, sex, stealing, or even murder. If I told someone that their child was going to die unless they paid me $3,000.00 by Sunday, many would do ANYTHING to get me those funds. That’s what kidnappers make their money off of with ransoms – parents’ insecurities. They know that a good parent’s worst fear and hardest thing to recover from is the death of their child. So they play on these fears/insecurities to get the parents to do things they probably never thought they could or would do. I’ve heard of drug addicts having sex with dogs to get another fix from their drug supplier. I’ve heard of mothers letting their drug dealer rape their small child for another fix. I just heard today that a man actually cut off the tips of two of his fingers just to make sure he would keep getting his prescription painkillers! People will do ANYTHING if they get desperate and insecure enough. Some people depend on drugs or money to make them feel secure in themselves. If drugs make you feel confident if you have an anxiety disorder (the most common mental illness in America), that drug is your security. And you will do anything to get it. Some people rob their own family and sell their bodies to get money for drugs to calm their nerves. Also, if money makes you feel superior to others, money is your security and you will do anything to get that too.

This is the same thing that Satan did with Eve. He promised her that she would be like a god. He made her feel inferior in her original God-given position. So out of INSECURITY, she ate the fruit. It wasn’t as if it wasn’t tempting or anything, so the choice was easy. So is fame and fortune. Much more tempting than some fruit. Remember how Satan tempted Jesus after he had fasted for 40 days in the wilderness? Unlike Eve, Jesus was 100% secure in his position with God. And he also knew 100% that he was loved and accepted in God’s eyes. He trusted God 100%. So when Satan tempted Jesus with His (Jesus’) ability to turn a stone into food, Jesus refused it. When he offered Jesus ALL the kingdoms in the world, Jesus refused it. Also, keep in mind that Jesus, unlike Eve and Adam, only had ONE source of truth. And that was God’s word. Jesus only obeyed one voice. That’s why he kept quoting scriptures to have Satan back up off him! Had Eve believed ONLY WHAT GOD SAID 100% AND TRUSTED GOD 100%, then she wouldn’t have doubted God to believe a snake. And being insecure in what God said caused the world’s FIRST SIN! All because Eve trusted Satan 100% while trusting God probably 0%.

John 2:23-25 – Now when he was in Jerusalem at the Passover, in the feast day, many believed in his name, when they saw the miracles which he did. But Jesus did not commit himself unto them, because he knew all men, And needed not that any should testify of man: for he knew what was in man.

Matthew 4:8-10 – Again, the devil taketh him up into an exceeding high mountain, and sheweth him all the kingdoms of the world, and the glory of them; And saith unto him, All these things will I give thee, if thou wilt fall down and worship me. Then saith Jesus unto him, Get thee hence, Satan: for it is written, Thou shalt worship the Lord thy God, and him only shalt thou serve.

That’s how some of us are. We believe what the media and people say about us. If they tell us we’re worthless, we try to find some worth. If they tell you that you’re ugly because you’re fat, you try to get beautiful by buying all their diets and exercise machines or starve yourselves. If they tell us we’re unlovable, we’ll settle for abusive relationships and cruel friendships. If they tell us we’re stupid, we settle for less in life because we think we’re not smart enough to attain better. If they tell us that we have to be freaky in bed to keep a man or woman, we try to read magazine articles to teach us how to be freaky or we buy their penis enhancement pills. If they tell us we’re inferior, we try to overcompensate by selling drugs or our bodies to make money to buy nice clothes, nice shoes, nice jewelry, nice homes, and nice cars. The media is a mess! The bible says that money answereth all things. So since you know that much, you think, “Once I get the money, THEN I GET THE LOVE AND WORTH AND ACCEPTANCE THAT I’VE BEEN LOOKING FOR ALL MY LIFE!”

Ecclesiastes 10:19 – “A feast is made for laughter, and wine maketh merry: but money answereth all things.”

Don’t let society make you feel inferior. There is no one on this earth better than you, and there is no one on this earth that is lesser in value than you. We are all created equal! You’re created in God’s very image. Male and female! Don’t let society make you think that an overweight, elderly person who is handicapped and who is poor is any less in value than a perfectly fit, young person who is rich. One will burn in hell just as easily as the other. And the afterlife is all that really matters. So draw your identity and security from God alone. Listen to God’s voice alone. No one else’s voice should matter that much in your life. Don’t be like Adam and Eve. Be content with who you are and with what you have. The Bible says that the love of money is the root of all evil. You’ll never be any happier if you were different than you are right now. If you’re miserable overweight, you’ll be miserable slim. I have yet to meet a satisfied anorexic. Don’t let the devil fool you. He’ll have you thinking you’ll be happier disobeying God and obeying Him. But Adam and Eve had a bad life after disobeying God. And just as God said, they died. Satan said that they wouldn’t surely die, but he lied!

In short, if God says something about you, and another person says something contradictory, then THAT person is a liar. God is the only 100% truthful one. The world’s facts don’t compare with God’s truth. If God says you’re beautiful, then there is not a single soul in hell or earth or heaven that can say otherwise. Their opinions don’t matter. Don’t be like Eve who trusts a voice more than God’s. If you are hanging around people who say things about you that God doesn’t agree with, then you need to find a new group!

If you believe the truths of the world when they don’t line up with God’s truth about you, insecurity and inferiority will ensue!

You Can’t Be Delivered From Something You Secretly Condone…

The bible says "who the Son sets free is free indeed", so why do YOU choose to stay bound?

During my usual talk with God, the topic of demonic oppression came up. And I was just thinking to myself about why I kept thinking I was being delivered from stuff that seemed to reappear weeks, months, or years later. And I feel the Holy Spirit blessed me with the answer to it. Actually there were two reasons. A tweet I read months prior almost hit one reason right it on the nail. The tweet read: “You can’t be delivered from stuff you secretly condone.” I realized that you don’t typically live with people you disagree with. A Black Panther for example would never live with a Klansmen. A Satanic high priestess would never take up residence with a Holy Ghost-filled Christian pastor. So I had realized that I was secretly condoning whatever the unclean spirit I was “living” with was condoning.

The second reason I was not achieving long-term deliverance was because I was being “benefited” my being bound. Sounds strange, I know. You might ask yourself, “How does being demonically oppressed benefit anyone?” And the answer was, “In the same way heroin addiction and Munchausen by proxy benefits someone. I’m sure you’ve watched shows on addicts and asked yourself, “Now, why on earth would this man keep injecting this poison in his veins when it has tore his family apart, cost him his health, and caused him to lose his job?” Well for the addict, the answer is clear. They get a euphoric high that they would never be able to achieve through any other means on this side of heaven. And also, it helps them to temporarily forget painful memories and truths. If it wasn’t for those two reasons, most people would never be addicted to drugs and alcohol. If heroin had no high and no amnesiac effects, no one would use it.

So when it comes to harmful things that we do not let go of, we have to understand that we are in fact getting SOME benefit from it. There is not one behavior that people continue to do that does not benefit them in some way. So when you ask me why I hadn’t yet been delivered from my demons, it was because they were benefiting me.

I was in church with my notepad and I began to write down and think of the ways my demons kept me safe – or feeling safe rather. How can one think that ruthless, merciless, hateful demons are keeping them safe? How can spirits of unforgiveness, bitterness, hate, timidity, depression, rejection, grief, control, and pride provide me with any benefits? You’d be surprised.

While in that church service, I was thinking to myself how I had been shy most of my life. I would hide from people. I would avoid men. I would shy away from public view sometimes. Even when there was clearly no threat to me, I would keep this shy attitude/mindset. So in that church service, the word “safe” came to mind. I realized that by holding onto this spirit of fear and nervousness, I was able to be safe from people’s opinions and potential hurt. People who are extroverted have many more chances of being hurt and rejected than shy people. Outgoing people befriend people – some of which will turn down their offer. But shy people NEVER get rejection. Extroverts do things that draw attention to themselves – some of which is negative attention. Introverts don’t draw half as much attention – including that negative attention. Being shy kept me safe. Safety and security is definitely a benefit.

How about the spirits of unforgiveness, bitterness, and resentment? How do they provide one with benefits? How about they erect a huge, steel wall between you and persons that you perceive as dangerous? If you never forgive your rapist, or negligent father, or estranged husband, you don’t have to worry about them ever hurting you again. If you forgive your dead-beat dad, that means you lowered or removed the wall for him to potentially hurt you again. But if you keep the wall up high with bitterness, future hurt is totally removed from the equation. Protection from future hurt is safety and security.

I’ve also gotten benefits from the spirit of pain and infirmity. I’ve gotten pity and attention. I wanted attention from my mother, and holding on to my diseases certainly got me attention with her taking me to different doctor appointments and treating my ailments. And the pity! People feeling sorry for the poor girl who was diagnosed with junior rheumatoid arthritis from the tender age of 12! People also admired me for having the pain and stiffness and yet still praising God as if nothing was wrong. So I got three benefits from holding onto arthritis even when I had many anointed men and women of God pray for my healing. I would feel no pain for a while, but as soon as I subconsciously saw an opportunity to get pity, attention, and admiration, the symptoms would come back.

Back to the first reason I could not stay delivered, another reason the arthritis seemed to keep reappearing was because of negative agreements I was making with the Enemy. For example, I would open the door for pain, inflammation, swelling, and stiffness in my joints during stormy days, wintry weather, and when I drank and ate certain foods. It was like I would shut the door on arthritic pain on good warm days when I was fasting or eating healthy. I would make no allowance for it whatsoever. But as soon as I drank a Coca-Cola, I would literally brace myself for pain to arise in my joints. Now some of you might be saying, “Well, Mistye, if you have an allergy to something, that’s not the same thing as you opening the door to demonic pain.” But I feel that in my case it was. Maybe not for a 89 year old woman, but for a pre-teen through 20 year-old, it is very abnormal to have joint pain. I truly believe it was spiritual in nature.

With regards to the making negative agreements with wrong spirits, I was thinking to myself also that you cannot live with someone you disagree with. You can think of this way. Would you marry a man with whom he only agreed with the first half of the traditional marriage vows and you only agreed with the second half of the traditional marriage vows? If you all don’t agree on the same contract, you wouldn’t marry. If you agree to pay $700 a month in rent and your roommate wants to pay half of the rent but only agrees to pay no more than $50, you and her will not at all share a lease. The same applies to spiritual covenants and agreements with demons. If you are being tempted by a spirit of unforgiveness to hold a bitter, unforgiving resentment against your molester, if you agree with him that unforgiveness is a great idea, he will enter in or oppress you. But if you say to the spirit, “Yeah, I could never forgive that man, but the bible says if I hold a grudge against him God will not forgive me and I can’t go to heaven. Besides, unforgiveness will not at all change what happened. So I choose to forgive him,” then you already know it will flee. Resist the devil, and he will flee. Agree with him, and he will come in and live (and wreak havoc) in your life. If you agree that you can date an unbeliever when you are a Christian, then you will keep dating your unbelieving boyfriend. But if you agree with Apostle Paul who said, “Be not unequally yoked with unbelievers,” then you will dump him. You cannot live with someone you disagree with on certain issues. And the same goes for evil spirits. They go about like Satan going to and fro seeking who they can devour. I was a revival/conference some weeks ago where the prophetess said she heard something a man taught about how evil spirits come in. He used the acronym “H.A.L.T.” The “A” stood for “anger”. One thing evil spirits look for in people they can easily possess is anger. Anger can be tied to unforgiveness. That’s why the bible says not to let the sun go down on your wrath. In other words, don’t go to bed angry. You shouldn’t let that kind of fire rest in your soul. You don’t want to wake up angry and bitter. Demons will be drawn to you like magnets. They know that they can possess or oppress an angry man quicker and easier than an easy-going and forgiving man.

When they see you angry for a long time, they begin to plot and scheme against you. They begin devising strategies in how to bring you down. Like if an adulteress woman sees that you have marital problems, she will see you as an easy target and if she likes you enough, she will go for you eventually. If you show any interest in her, she will pounce. Spirits of unforgiveness work much the same way. They don’t have enough time to wait on forgiving folk to agree with them; they have plenty of unforgiving people who will quickly and easily agree with them therefore letting them in. A Klansmen will agree with spirit of hatred quicker than a philanthropist, so who do you think has a spirit of hatred? Every klansmen has this spirit until he disagrees with racism and discrimination. And then the spirit flees to another fool. Now I won’t say all spirits leave that easily. It’s not just about agreements, it’s also about authority in Jesus’ name. Spirits aren’t scared of mere mortals, but they hate and fear Jesus and acknowledge His authority. But in this note, I’m just focusing on not letting the spirit in in the first place – I’m not trying to tell you how to cast it out. But later I will share my testimony in how I was delivered from spirits. I won’t say for sure that I was possessed with all of them, but I was surely oppressed.

And some people have a spirit of immaturity. I say immaturity because I can’t find the right word for what I mean. But people with that type of spirit rarely accomplish things in life. They always need help. They always play the victim. Who would dare hold on to this spirit? How does being a failure at life benefit anyone? How about it gets people constant help, lets them continue being lazy, continue making excuses, and never have to grow up. I remember when I moved out of my mom’s house after I had graduated from college. And within me, I heard a small voice say, “But who’s going to take care of me?” And it was kind of creepy. This was about 2 years ago, so I was about 24 years old. And this random voice asked this. And I began to get teary-eyed. And I realized that for those two years or so that I was living with my mom and stepdad, they fed me and my mom would somewhat baby me if I got sick. And I loved the attention because I’m a middle child with a sister a year older than me and a sister a year younger than me. So I had to constantly compete for my mom’s attention. And so when I got out of college (both my sisters were still in college), I got all their attention. And it was as if the unclean spirit that was oppressing me tried to scare me out of branching out and living alone. I had had many roommates in college, but had never lived alone. And I was the first female in my immediate family who ever had. In addition to that spirit of passivity, I had realized something related to it. I never wanted to cook when I was in Memphis where my mom lives. I didn’t mind it so much in college in Knoxville, but in Memphis when living with my mom, I lost probably ALL desire to cook and learn how to cook. And I feel as if they Holy Spirit revealed to me that it was because I didn’t want to grow up. In my mind, as long as my mom was cooking for me, I was still a child. I was still being babied. And babies and children never cook. And so cooking for me represented adulthood which I did NOT want to do yet. Adults don’t get as much attention or pity as children. I remember telling my mother and stepfather how much weight I had lost from not cooking once I had moved out. And they would pity me and cook for me or buy me groceries. So those were my benefits of this unclean spirit.

I used to just feel sorry for people who were being afflicted by spirits, and of course I still do. But I said I used to JUST feel sorry. I thought they were just 100% innocent people walking around minding their own business when a spirit just JUMPED down their throat possessing them. But now I see that we are somewhat responsible for the spirits we get. Truth is, if it was up to Satan, wouldn’t parent have a spirit of hatred? Wouldn’t every child have a spirit of rebellion? Wouldn’t every banker have a spirit of greed? Wouldn’t every politician have a spirit of control? Absolutely. But unclean spirits can’t just get whoever they want. They have to get unsuspecting victims who are willing to agree with them. For example, most homosexuals agree that they were born gay. They all likely have the same spirits of perversion that tempted them to agree with them that they were born gay. If a spirit tempted you to engage in homosexual acts, you only have two options – agree or disagree. If you told the spirit “no”, then you aren’t a homosexual. If you AGREED with the spirit, then it enters into this negative agreement, this lie, and binds you AS LONG AS you agree with it that you are gay. But as soon as you disagree and stop obeying its voice, you will loose its hold. You do know that you don’t have to obey everything unclean spirits tell you to do. And when you let it in, it takes control. So whereas in the beginning, you ha a choice, once you let it in, you do not have control.

Your words – usually spoken aloud – are what draws evil spirits to you. Trauma, tiredness, hunger, anger, being out of fellowship with others, and agreeing with lies. Lies are basically ideas and concepts that God disagrees with. If God doesn’t agree with it, it is a lie. So if Satan finds out that you are agreeing with his lies (and they’re all his lies because He is the father – the originator – of all lies), he will come to you to tempt you. Be careful what you say! Be careful what you do! Be careful where you go! Be careful who you hang out with. The bible says to be careful. Be vigilant against your adversary the devil because he goes about as a roaring lion seeking whom he can devour. He’s looking around for an unwary, unsuspecting prey to agree with him. If you’ve ever watched shows on the Animal Planet channel where the camera man was observing the dynamic between a predator and his prey, this will help you understand more of how Satan works. If we are in a group of wary people, at least one of us will spot the lion and will run to safety. But if you are on the fringes of the group and not a very fast runner, you will be the prey that day. And lions are vicious and ravenous when it comes to eating. They show no mercy to their food. How much mercy do you show a cheeseburger on your plate? You devour it as ruthlessly as a lion devours a deer. Satan’s no vegetarian! So like a lion, he has his eyes on the weak, slow-running deer that can’t keep up with the others. Make sure you are strong in God. Make sure you are prepared for escape. The bible says there is no temptation so great that God has not provided an escape from it. But if you are so clueless, you will not see the exit sign and will fall right in the trap.

And another extended metaphor that will help drive this point home is this. The Christian walk is a battlefield. We’re in it to win it. This is not a game. We’re soldiers on the battlefield, and we’re fighting for the Lord. Satan is not playing with you and neither are his minions. They’re serious about their jobs and positions. Their job is to destroy you. You are on the other side and you are their enemy because your commander is their enemy. They hate God and so they hate you. Now imagine being a soldier who’s taking a nap IN THE MIDDLE OF COMBAT! A soldier texting on his phone with his “boo-junt” on the enemy’s side. Another soldier is cleaning his gun while the enemy is aiming at him. You have to come armed and prepared and focused. The spirit of anger is not texting. The spirit of perversion is never resting. The spirit of rebellion is not rolling his eyes at his commander. The spirit of infirmity is not arguing with the spirit of death. They work together because a kingdom divided itself cannot stand.

And because we are not focused on fighting or winning this battle, we keep letting the enemy in our camp. We even sometimes let them give us our marching orders. Our commander-in-chief tells us to shoot this enemy down in our lives, and we second guess it. And we second guess our deliverance because of the benefits we get from NOT shooting it down. God says, “By Jesus’ stripes, be healed from arthritis,” and I receive the healing by faith. And the symptoms all go away. No more pain, swelling, inflammation, and stiffness in my joints. But then I begin thinking to myself, “Man, before I got healed, I got to skip work. My unemployment check was more than my paychecks! My husband’s not babying me anymore by helping me down the stairs in the morning. My mom doesn’t check up on me nearly as much to see how I’m doing. And I had the best excuses for not going exercising with my best friend. Man, sometimes I think I was better off with that disease.” And next thing you know, the spirit of pain is back with all its “benefits”.

You can’t be delivered from something you secretly condone…

Soul Winning: Hebrews 4:12 Style

Is there a right and wrong way to win souls?

How to Best Win a Hardened Soul

The bible says in Hebrews 4:12 that the word of God is sharper than any two-edged sword. There is nothing sharper or more cutting than the Word of God. If you apply God’s word to a situation, things cannot help but to change. This same verse says that with the Word of God, you can pierce to the dividing of one’s soul and spirit, joints and marrow. You can discern the thoughts and intents of the heart with God’s word alone.

So what better instrument to use to bring down a hardened heart than with the Word of God?

But anyone knows that an instrument that is not correctly put to use is useless. What use is a closed book? What use is a knife that remains in a drawer? Unless someone applies the Word, it is futile in soulwinning. So it is important to ask oneself, how should one apply the Word of God to bring down a tree?

On my way to work, I noticed the trees to the left of me. And I was thinking about how the lumberjacks brought down the trees as they do. And God gave me this amazing insight about how one can bring down the toughest of sinners with the sharpest – God’s word. If God’s word can’t convince you, if God’s word is not wise, then what is?

There are THREE things one needs to bring down a tree with an ax.

1. The ax must be sharp(ened).
2. The axeman must swing with the appropriate amount of pressure.
3. The axeman must have the right aim and angle.
4. More than likely, the axeman will need to be willing to spend some amount of time on the tree.

Without those three in order, the tree will not come down. Here are the issues that often come to those who are missing even one of these points:

Some people make the mistake of quoting a bible verse at an unbeliever, and thinking that the Word alone will drive them to their knees in repentance. Some people make the mistake of attacking people with the Sword of the Word, and wondering in confusion as to why the person runs off offended or spiritually wounded. Some people make the mistake of attacking the wrong issues of a person without aiming at what matters, the heart. And some people may only be willing to spend a couple of minutes to lead one to Christ and are surprised when no repentance takes place.

I’ve done a lot of soul winning in the past few years. And I’ve made a lot of mistakes too! The bible says that he who wins souls is wise. I’m not sure if that bible verse means what we take it to mean today (for those of use who read KJV), but it is true either way. If you can win a soul to Christ, you must be wise! And when I first began soulwinning, I was definitely very foolish. I’ve misapplied each of the 4 points. Here is what happened:

Regarding number one, I did not have my Sword of the Word sharpened. I did not know what the bible had to say. I had a very small sword being that I knew SOME of what the bible said, but I did not know enough. The sword alone is sharp, so if you know the Word, it will be effective. But many Christians do not know the gospel. They go out trying to win souls and can’t even answer unbelievers’ simple questions biblically. Please know that many unbelievers know the bible fairly well. And they will beat you with your bible. And soulwinning of course is not about a battle of the wits or bible trivia. But if you are trying to win the soul of an Orthodox Jew, knowing the bible very well will go a long way. Remember that the early church was Jewish. They knew the Old Testament prophecies about the Messiah. And so it was easy for some bible scholars to identify Jesus Christ as the Messiah the Old Testament Messianic prophecies were prophesying about. But if you don’t know what is written, how can you tell a Jew who does know that he is wrong about certain things? Know the gospel!

Concerning number two, I would sometimes not apply the right amount of pressure. Sometimes I would apply the pressure too lightly. I was afraid of offending, so I would purposely not mention certain bible truths that would definitely be helpful, but that I feared would make the person angry with me. You cannot bring down a tree by tapping it with a razor. You must apply pressure. They must feel the severity of what you are saying. Don’t just apathetically say, “Jesus died for your sins.” But let them know that this is serious. A real innocent Hebrew man died an excruciatingly painful, humiliating death on a cross for some ungrateful, sinful men. Make sure they get that message across! Jesus died for you sins will not move a hardened man an inch. So I had to learn to let them hear the sincerity in my voice. Do not play or joke about the gospel. It is the MOST serious matter there is. Souls in hell is nothing to take lightly, but yet many soulwinners do it daily.

But sometimes I would go the extreme and apply TOO much pressure. Whereas this would not be a problem an axing down a tree, it is a common problem in soul winning. A popular quote says, “People don’t care how much you know until they know how much you care.” You cannot go up to an enemy that you’ve mistreated all their life of knowing you and then tell you, “You heathen! You are going to burn in hell unless you repent of your wicked sins! The bible says it! And if you don’t like it, then that’s just to bad because you will burn!” Do you see how offensive that is? Would any person in their right mind respond to that soul winning technique? No! Not likely. It’s okay to apply a lot of pressure to someone you’ve known and treated well for a long time. It’s okay to say to your twin sister, “Mae, I’ve known you all our life. And so you know I care about you. You know I’d do anything for you. And so please understand that when I tell you the gospel, it is because I do not want to spend an eternity without you. I do not want to see you go to hell. I love you too much. And because I love you, I have to tell you the truth of what the Holy Spirit has been asking me to share with you about your lifestyle and how it is unpleasing to God. And He wants to warn you before it is too late…” (So forth and so on.) I’ve told perfect strangers that they were going to hell unless they believed in Jesus. It was a true Word, but it was too much pressure to apply to a stranger.

The third point talks of having the right aim and angle of holding the sword. You have so many different angles you can swing an ax. Holding the ax at 180 degrees through 360 degrees is a waste of time. An angle too close to those is just like skinning the tree. You want your angle to be close to a 45 degree angle or even 0 degrees. to get your aim right. Your goal is to get straight to the heart, not to skin the tree. It’s to get the tree down as fast as possible so that you can get to the next tree. Time is of the essence. But sometimes, I would allow an unbeliever to sidetrack me when I was aiming at soulwinning. I’d approach them with the business of soulwinning, and within a few seconds, we’d be talking about is God real and who made the universe and even one person tried to sidetrack me on is Jesus just Julius Caesar’s son! And it is important to know that you lead the conversation, because wherever they will try to lead it will not lead to soulwinning. A conversation with a tree will not lead to you chopping it down. If trees could talk, they would give you a lot of reasons to try to talk you out of chopping them down! Everytime they try to sidetrack you, redirect them back to the issue of their unrepentant, unconfessed sins needing to be forgiven sooner rather than later. Let them know that there is only One who can save them and that He requires obedience, love, and service. God did not ask you to convince atheists that He exists and that He created the world and that humans did not descend from apes and that the bible was not written by power-hungry white men. He told you to be witnesses of Jesus and to make disciples of the nations.

Last but not least, you must be willing to invest time into the lost soul. Oftentimes, the last factor that goes into winning a lost soul is TIME. Anything worth having is worth spending time upon. Quickly quoting a bible verse is not usually enough to send people to the altar giving their lives to Christ. When someone is hardened against the truth, you have to pray and ask God for wisdom to remove layers off of them to get to their sensitive heart. And sometimes when you do lead a soul to Christ, it is because you are simply building off of someone else’s hard labor. Maybe someone has been witnessing to them for years, and their pastor has been giving them the word. And so when you come along with a warning that they must give an account to God one day when they die on a date they do not expect, they may be ready to give their life to Christ. And you may be the one that God needs to sow the seeds while another person “reaps” the soul harvest many years later. It’s usually not too late until the person is dead. So give them more time!

So remember. The Word of God is the instrument of soul winning. You will not win a soul to Christ without first using the truth of the Word of the gospel. BUT, you must know how to wield the Sword of the truth to pierce (convict) the heart of the sinner.

Define Yourself! To Stand for Nothing Means to Fall for Anything!

Coexist? Not in the same one person you can't!

Repent. If you stand for nothing you fall for anything.

Who are you? How would your friends, family, classmates, coworkers, and significant other define you?

When people identify you, they will usually say statements like, “she is nice/rude, smart/slow, funny/dull.” They also might say what you like by saying things like, “he likes sports, she loves to read, she enjoys being in the water.” They also might say what you believe in. They might say, “she’s pro-choice, she’s Democratic, she’s a Buddhist.”

But what defines you just as much as statements as, “she IS, she LIKES, and she BELIEVES in,” are statements like, “he IS NOT, he HATES, and he’s AGAINST.”

Do the people who know you know what you don’t like and what you stand against?

I’ve been reading much on the topic of boundaries for ourselves from a licensed psychologist and author named Dr. Henry Cloud, I have learned of the importance of a “yes” and a “no” when it comes to us setting personal boundaries. I have learned that if you say yes to EVERYTHING, then your yesses have lost their signicance and meaning. If you tell EVERY Tom, Dick, and Harry that you love them more than anyone else in the world, then all three of those “I love you more than anyone else in the world” mean absolutely nothing. They are mutually exclusive (they cancel one another out). For example, you cannot be both pregnant and unpregnant. So you cannot equally love three men more than anyone else in the world at the same time. In this case, all those yesses mean absolutely nothing because for Tom, Dick, and Harry there are two other men you love more than anyone else in the world. If I say, “Yes, I am pro-choice,” and “Yes, I am pro-life,” then both of those yesses are worth a hill of beans. In other words, they are worthless.

People who claim to like everything have a lack of identity. People who know what they like and what they don’t like have a set identity. People who don’t stand against or and who don’t stand for anything have a lack of identity. People who stand for some things and who stand against other things have a set identity. Any topic you throw my way, I will more than likely be for or against it. Here are four examples of people with or without boundaries to themselves, and decide who you would rather be friends with.

  • Shara likes EVERYTHING. There is nothing she does not like. She’ll try anything twice. When her sister asks her what her favorite color is so that she can buy her a cute dress in her favorite color, Shara says, “It doesn’t matter. I love all colors equally.” When her boyfriend is trying to decide what cut of diamond to get her for their engagement, Shara says, “I don’t really care. I like all the cuts. It can be cushion, emerald, princess, round, etc.” When her mother is trying to see which movie they should watch together at the theater on Mother’s Day, Shara says, “I have no preference. We can watch the new Jason movie, we can watch Watchmen, we can watch whatever. It can be horror, love, suspense, comedy, whatever you want, Mom.” When Shara’s best friend wants to have dinner with her, Shara has no preference for which restaurant. She doesn’t even care what type of food – fast food, seafood, barbeque, whatever. SHARA LIKES ANY AND EVERY THING.
  • Mark however knows what he likes. He has preferences. When his friend asks him what he wants to watch on tv, he will say, “I want to watch the game on ESPN.” His dad asks him what he wants to do on the weekend. Mark says, “I want to go fishing at Bass Lake.” His girlfriend asks him what his favorite color is so she can buy him a tie in his favorite color, and Mark says, “I like blue the best.” Mark’s boss asks him what hours he wants on the new schedule, and Mark says, “I go to church on Wednesday nights and Sunday mornings, so don’t schedule me at those times.”
  • Harry is like Shara. He also stands for NOTHING. He’s a Christian, but he is against nothing. There is no thing that he fights against. He DOESN’T stand against abortion, gay marriage, the raising of taxes, the war in Iraq, murder, adultery, fornication, drug usage, lying, stealing, racism, rape, molestation, incest, or anything. He DOES NOT stand against anything, but he calls himself a Christian. He doesn’t like confrontation or arguments, so he just chills and his motto is “be easy.”
  • Michelle is unlike Harry. She knows what she stands for and stands against. She is not against the war in Iraq, and she is against abortion. She participates in marches against domestic violence, and she is not against the raising of taxes. She donates money to help limit starvation in Africa, and she fine with fornication if the couple is monogamous. She thinks fighting and profanity is gross and will tell you not to do it in her presence. She is fine with people gambling.

Which two of the four people seem to have a secure and stable identity?

“We must be able to say what is ‘not me’ in order to have a ‘me.’ What we like has no meaning unless we know what we don’t like. Our yes has no meaning if we never say no. My chosen profession has no passion if ‘just any one would do.’ Our opinions and thoughts mean very little if there is nothing we disagree with.” – Dr. Henry Cloud

Personally, Shara would annoy the mess out of me. She’s the kind of person who always says, “I don’t care. I don’t know. I don’t have a preference. Whatever you want to do. You decide.” I’m sure all the men readers who have asked a girl out on a date hate it when a woman says, “I don’t care,” when he asks her what restaurant she wants to go to. You know you care, you’re just afraid it may be something he won’t like. But then as soon as he decides which restaurant, you think, “I don’t want to go there!” People might say, “Wouldn’t Shara be considered fun being that she doesn’t NOT like to do anything?” She would appear down to earth to some, but she’d actually be dull to me because she has no likes – because she likes everything! It’s like an atheist saying, “I like and believe in godlessness, I like and believe in evolution, I like and believe in Darwinism, I like and believe in natural selection, I like and believe in Creationism, I like and believe in God, I like and believe in Buddhism, I like and believe in Krishna. I like and believe in Jesus.” His likes and beliefs mean absolutely nothing because he believes in everything. So Shara is not just a fun-loving person. She is someone with no standards, no beliefs, no likes, and no interests. If she stands for nothing, she falls for anything.

Harry is also annoying to me. He calls himself a Christian, but there is nothing he fights against. He is afraid of people not liking him or arguing with him because he just wants to skate through life without any opposition. No one believes he’s a Christian because he doesn’t try to put boundaries against anything God is against. He’s a pushover with no backbone. He is not a real Christian because every Christian stands against evil and stands up for the things of God. I’m not saying Christians should go around telling everyone that they are a sinner and should stop the sin or burn in hell, but I am saying that people who know a Christian should have an idea where that Christian stands on certain issues. God has no problem letting us know where He stands on certain issues in the Bible, so we should be like Him in that regard.

I like Mark and Michelle though. Those are the people I wouldn’t mind being friends with. Mark knows what he wants. With him, you don’t feel like a mother or father taking their child to and fro. A little child just goes wherever, eats whatever, does whatever, wears whatever with no opinion. I might not agree with all that Michelle agrees with, but at least I know where she stands. She doesn’t shrug her shoulders about everything. She knows her identity. Shara and Harry have no set identity. They are who they are around at the time. If Harry’s at church, he can be against abortion, rape, fornication, and drug using. But when Harry’s around his cousins who aren’t saved, he doesn’t say anything to them about smoking weed, having abortions, or fornicating. Of course, he can’t make them do something they don’t want to do, but they should at least KNOW EXACTLY where he stands on those topics IF he’s a Christian who is supposed to be against those things.

“What do you think? There was a man who had two sons. He went to the first and said, ‘Son, go and work today in the vineyard.'” ‘I will not,’ he answered, but later he changed his mind and went. “Then the father went to the other son and said the same thing. He answered, ‘I will, sir,’ but he did not go. “Which of the two did what his father wanted?” “The first,” they answered.

Matthew 21:28-31 (New Internation Version)

I like the first son better. He had a backbone. His nos meant no, and his yesses meant yes. He didn’t just say what his dad wanted to hear because he was afraid of upsetting him. He was honest about what he wanted to do. He did get it right though and changed his mind and did work in the vineyard later on.

The second son however was probably afraid to say no to his dad. He was a punk and/or a liar. He wanted to tell his dad whatever his dad wanted to hear. But at the end of the day, he didn’t do it because he probably never wanted to in the first place! The dad’s will was done in the honest, first son, and it was not done in the lying, people-pleasing second son.

But I tell you, Do not swear at all: either by heaven, for it is God’s throne; or by the earth, for it is his footstool; or by Jerusalem, for it is the city of the Great King. And do not swear by your head, for you cannot make even one hair white or black. Simply let your ‘Yes’ be ‘Yes,’ and your ‘No,’ ‘No’; anything beyond this comes from the evil one.

Matthew 5:34-38 (New International Version)

I don’t like it when people stand for nothing. They aren’t pro-choice, they aren’t against stealing, they aren’t against cheating, they aren’t against fighting. They’re just there. They have NO identity. They just blend in with the crowd. No one respects them because they have nothing to respect. I have more respect for an unbeliever who knows what he is for and against than for a Christian who doesn’t stand up for or stand up against anything. At least I can trust the unbeliever to do what he says he will do.

God lets it be known throughout the Bible who He is. Most people have never met God, but they can tell who He is by what he stands against and stands for. In Isaiah 61:8 he lets it be known that he loves justice. In Ezekiel 6:9 he lets it be known that he is against adultery. In Jeremiah 3:12, he lets it be known that he is merciful. In Leviticus 11:44, he lets us all know that he is holy. In Exodus 6:6, he lets us know that he is compassionate. He lets us know that he is almighty in Genesis 17:1. In Numbers 23: 19, God lets us know that he is not a man that he should lie or repent. God lets us know what he is by what he stands against and stands for.

Don’t you feel safe around people who let you know their identity? The scariest person to live with or hang out with are the people of whom you never know what they will do next. You live in fear wondering if your dad will snap and punch you in the face today. You live in fear wondering if your best friend will sleep with your boyfriend when you leave them alone. You want people around you who let you know what they will and will not do. If you know your dad will beat you every time he gets drunk on Saturday nights, then you can know not to come home until Sunday morning. But if he beats you at random times, it’s more horrible and unavoidable because of how unpredictable and unpreventable it is. If you have a friend who is trustworthy and says she is against premarital sex, then you can feel comfortable having your boyfriend give her a ride home. But if you have a friend who says, “I just don’t know who I’ll sleep with next; I have no limits or standards when it comes to sex. If I feel like it one day, I’ll just do it with whomever,” you’ll be afraid to leave your new boyfriend around her.

So do YOU have a set identity? Does everyone who knows you know what you stand for or against? Especially if you are a Christian. Every person you know should know you live a holy life. Everyone who gets to know me (and people who don’t) knows that I only listen to gospel music, that I like reading and writing, and that I am smart. Everyone who knows me well knows that I am against the war in Iraq, that I am against abortion, and that I am against drug use. People feel safe around me because they know I won’t change on them sporadically. Even, people who are unbelievers like that they can be sure that I will not change. They think I’m stable and safe. They don’t worry about me sleeping with their boyfriend, stealing money out of their purse, or drinking and driving their child home from daycare.

God is trustworthy too. I know that He will never hurt me. I know that when I die, He won’t say, “Change my mind! You’re going to hell. Go directly to hell. Do not pass “GO”. Do not collect $200.” I know that He will make sure that all my needs are met. That’s why I don’t get why people serve Satan. They know he’s unstable and will lie about anything. But yet they trust him to give them a kingdom in hell when they die. They trust him never to attack them even while they are putting curses on and torturing others. Some people are religion-hoppers or people who combine religions. They have no boundaries to what they will and will not believe. That’s why I’m 100% against the COEXIST crap. How can you be for Christianity AND Wicca when Satan and Jesus don’t like each other? (Yes, Wicca is Satanic. Do your research.) These “COEXISTers” will be a Kabbalachristibuddhislamajewiccan depending on the weather or what’s cool in the media at that time. They are sell-outs on EVERY religion. One day, Jesus is their Homeboy and the next, he was just a wise prophet with a little power. One day you bow to a Buddha statue and the next you pray at the wailing wall. One week, you love Krishna, and the next you worship God. I know a guy like that. He believes in the Old Testament, he does ecstasy, fornicates, is fine with having evil spirits in his apartment, but he hates when people eat or show violence to animals. WHAT?!?!?! Make up your mind, buddo!

Know who and what you are. Know what you stand for and what you stand against. Know what you believe in. Know what you like and dislike. Don’t change your identity to please other people because they’ll only change their mind in a year or so, and you’ll have to change again then. This year, short hair might be in. Then in 2010, long hair might be in. This season everyone will want IPODS, but in two months, there might be another cool music machine that makes all Ipoders into dorks. You should not base your identity on a changing, confused world. Some of the times I’ve felt the worst was when I compromised on myself. I am for natural hair for Black women, but I got a relaxer to make people happy. I felt like a self sell-out. In college when I said I was not going to drink anymore, I felt SO bad when I betrayed my word and drank again. I hate being a self sell-out. But even worse than that a God sell-out. Stay true to you!

Setting Boundaries Against Trespassing In Relationships

No one has a right to your space or vice versa. Establish healthy self boundaries!

One of the concepts that has had the biggest impact, if not THE biggest impact, on my life is the concept of boundaries. Boundaries is knowing where you end and the next person begins. It’s knowing what lies inside of your boundary line – kind of like a neighbor knows how much of the adjacent yard belongs to him and how much belongs to the neighbor – and knowing what lies outside of your boundary line. When the boundary lines start getting confused, then we often end up being confused and frustrated without knowing why.

My FAVORITE author, Dr. Henry Cloud, is a psychologist. He has changed my personal and social life with his books. This is some of what I’ve learned from him about boundaries.

Everyone has boundaries. For some strange reason, people have an invisible area surrounding our bodies that we call “personal space”. When this personal space gets crossed without our permission, we feel nervous, uncomfortable, frustrated, agitated, irritated, and all those other similar adjectives. We don’t like it when someone comes into our personal space uninvited. Americans’ personal space is usually about 2 feet on each side of us. If you come even an inch too close, our tendency is to take a step back. This is done automatically without us even thinking about it! Our bodies are trained to keep its boundaries protected. If someone walks up on you too quickly, some of us have reflexes of pushing that person back outside our “bubble”. Isn’t that interesting? I hear in Hispanic countries, their bubbles are smaller, and they will be offended if you are standing too far off from them.

The purpose of this post is not to talk about personal space, but I felt it was important to mention that to show JUST how important it is to people to have their boundary area respected. Well, when it comes to other boundaries, we act the same way. For example, if someone tries to boss you around, your tendency might be to back off from them. And if they come on to strong with the bossiness, you might rebel and push them away emotionally. When someone tries to cross our mental boundaries, just as with our physical boundaries, we try to protect them.

I’ve learned the importance of respecting other people’s boundaries. I’ve also learned that there are other things that lie within my boundary line other than personal space and choices. I learned that MY emotions, opinions, and thoughts lie within my boundary line, and that other people’s emotions, opinions, and thoughts lie within THEIR boundary line. Just as I don’t like it when other people try to tell me how or what to think, feel, and do, people feel the same way about me!

There are some other areas where we have to know where we end and someone else begins. Some males and females get super clingy in relationships. They don’t know where their boundary line ends and their boyfriend or girlfriend’s begins. They want ALL of their significant other’s attention, time, love, etc. They are being disrespectful when they try to force the other person to do this. People are separate entities (bodies) that should have freedom to do their own thing. God wants us to be obedient to and pray to Him all the time, but He doesn’t force us to do it. He just tells us what He wants from us and then He lets us make the choice. We should be the same way with friends, family members, coworkers, and significant others. We can tell them what we want from them and would like for them to do for us, but we can’t FORCE it on them. That’s disrespectful.

I’ll use a personal example. I had a friend who could be considered kind of clingy. She wanted me to be on the phone with her for hours on end every day. She would text me nonstop throughout the day. I would tell her that my phone bill was going over because of it. She wanted us to hang out all the time. She would stop by the house unexpectedly and beg me to go with her places even after I told her no several times. But I like to do things alone. I LOVE my alone time because I can read, write, watch tv, and commune with God at that time. But she didn’t want me to have my own life. She didn’t know where her life ended and where mine began. Because she kept crossing my boundaries, I had to put her in her place – which was outside of my boundary line. We’re still friends, but our friendship is not clingy anymore. It is unhealthy and dysfunctional when someone wants to spend inordinate amounts of time with you. Only newborn infants should be with their mothers all the time. Jesus got alone to pray to God in the mornings; he didn’t spend every waking moment with people. People will drain you if you don’t step away to recharge!

But when the shoe was on the other foot, I used to get angry with people when they didn’t let me cross their boundaries. Like if someone didn’t respond to a text message quick enough or didn’t call me back quick enough, I would be angry at them as if they were required to talk to me! I would blame them for me feeling upset, angry, or sad about it. But many lessons and a few years later, I learned that no one HAS to answer their phone. People don’t sign contracts for a cell phone that say, “At every moment, I will answer this phone and respond to every text I receive.” I feel that people who are married are ONE with their partner, so I think that they should let their spouse know where they are, but if you are a friend or a family member or a boyfriend or a girlfriend, no one HAS to do anything for you. They never made a vow or commitment to you. And if you or I want to get mad about it, guess what? Those feelings lie within OUR OWN boundary line. That person is not responsible for making you happy again. That’s your job; those emotions of yours are on your property. Deal with them.

In addition to feelings and actions, we can’t make someone think how we want them to think. They might pretend they agree with our opinions, but you’ll never know because their thoughts are floating around in their heads – not yours. I write a lot of blog posts on some controversial topics, and, believe it or not, someone will comment on MY blog post (which lies within MY boundary line), and will have the audacity to tell me not to think what I think! Can you believe that? I don’t mind someone telling me, “Well, I beg to differ with you on the point you made regarding abortion. I don’t consider it murder.” But when someone tells me, ‘You can’t say that! You can’t think that! Don’t write that! Delete this post!” I think it’s absurd. I never go to a lesbian’s page who writes something about how homosexuality is not a sin, and tell them, “Don’t be gay!” I don’t go to anorexic people’s posts who write about how they only ate two crackers today and tell them, “Stop vomiting, stop exercising, and eat!”

But I can tell them, “I respect your views; but in my opinion, according to the bible, homosexuality is wrong.” I can go to an anorexic’s site and say, “I understand that this is a very serious disorder, but I feel that you are glorifying this suicidal lifestyle and that you are perhaps leading other young girls to starve themselves to death.” Yes, my opinions might be perceived as kind of forward, but guess what, “THEY LIE WITHIN MY BOUNDARY LINE, and if you enable comments on your page, you have opened your boundary line for other people to comment their opinions to you and your readers. However, I don’t think people should try to force you to think like them because, like I said earlier, they may appear to conform to your views outwardly, but inwardly they can have the same mindset. More than likely though, they might PUSH you out of their boundary line by saying some harsh words and blocking you from their page!

I realize that God respects other people’s boundaries even though we sometimes don’t. I know of pastors that will tell you how and what to think based on their own opinions. I think that is wrong. I think pastors can tell people – who decided to come to their church – what the Word of God says we should and should not do or think. BUT we must also keep in mind that God Himself doesn’t make us do anything that we don’t want to do. God doesn’t force us to get saved. If that was the case, no one would go to hell. God doesn’t force us to make only good choices in life. What He does is present us with the only and right things we need to be doing, and then He lets US choose what we will do with that information within our boundary line. I sometimes WISH God would force people to see the truth, but that’s not how God operates. So I’m guessing He wants us to do the same. Show people the truth, tell people the truth, and leave it up to them to take that information into their boundary line and live according to it if they choose to do so.

So basically, please ask for permission before you cross people’s boundary lines. If God tells me to bind the devil when he wants to act a fool on my property, surely I won’t let you do it!

What NOT To Do When He Loves You Not

When he doesn't like you naturally, do you make him think he likes you mentally?

I decided to write this note when another friend of mine had purchased yet ANOTHER book on “how to get a man”. Selah! This one was called “Why Men Love B**ches”. This friend of mine was interested in a young man that she knows was not nearly as interested in her. So she tried to get tips on how to get and keep his attention. So this is a note to all the women (and I guess men too) who are looking for love or who have already found it, and who are doing anything other than simply being genuine in order to keep it going. Men can read this too because sometimes they are guilty of love manipulation or “man, I pull a sham/scam”!

How did you get your man? Through manipulation? Or was he just The One and you found each other at the right time?

The reason I ask this is because I know so many females who don’t wait until a decent guy comes along. They just pick the cool, jerk of a guy, and use all of these shams and scams to get him to commit. Or at least to stay as long as possible.

But, ladies, that is manipulation! ManIPullaSham. Man, I Pull A Sham/Scam!

My college buddies and I used to read a lot of Cosmopolitan and Redbook magazine back when we were in college. We loved to read the articles that taught us how to snag and keep a man. I also loved to spend a lot of time on iVillage, which is like Cosmopolitan online. We used it because if we pulled a man, I wanted to make him fall more in love with us so that he wouldn’t leave. And the times we couldn’t get the man we wanted, we would manipulate matters to get his attention. By manipulation, I mean when you see that someone’s free will has chosen not to be with you or stay with you, you employ underhanded strategies and techniques to change his free will.

The truth is that if a dude likes you, he will let you know sooner or later (and usually sooner than later). So why should we manipulate or pull a sham of a scam to hurry it if it will happen between us and the dudes that like us? Now there are some instances when a man that really likes you may not approach you.

1. If he’s very shy and fearful of rejection. Love phobia is very common.

2. If he’s dating someone else at the time, and he is a good, faithful dude who does not want to hurt her feelings by dumping her just to date someone else.

3. If he’s a good guy, who does not want to try to break up your relationship with another guy out of respect for the other young man.

4. Sometimes (and this is for the guy who is serious about you), a guy will scope you out for a few weeks to see if you are long-term/marriage material.

For #1, you can sometimes tell when a guy is shy. I know because I used to be VERY shy myself and don’t like rejection at all. For along time, I was a love-phobe. If I thought there was any chance I’d get rejected, I’d totally ignore the guy even if I thought I’d really like getting to know him. So if you know that the guy is shy, then you can let him know he has a good chance if he tries. But if you have to keep giving him hints, he’s probably not interested. So don’t manipulate.

For #2, if he’s dating someone else at the time, respect the other young lady. I’m sure he’s thinking of a plan to end his current relationship to look into starting one with you. Besides, who would want a guy who would cheat anyway? He’d see that you tolerate cheating, and he might do it to you too later.

For #3, if you’re dating someone else, you need to leave that person before you look at new dude out of respect for your current. Then the new dude will see the open door of opportunity for him to try. And he’d also respect and trust you more for being a trustworthy and faithful girlfriend (wifey material). So just know that some dudes will not try to date you if you’re already taken or seem to be taken.

For #4, be on your best behavior, and be you. I had a guy scope me out to see if he would like me. He even went so far as to ask people about me to see if I was his type and to see if he had a good chance with me. Fortunately, I had a good reputation, so he got good reports. It was funny, because when I asked him what people said about me, he said, “I was told that you did not play. I heard that whoever dated you better get his mind right because you don’t tolerate the foolishness.” (He got that right!) Now if I had been acting a fool in public, and had the people that he asked about me told him that, he would have never let me know he was interested, and I’ve have kept on sabotaging myself as a single by acting like a person that men don’t want to date.

But let’s be clear. I also believe that we should always be ourselves. For example, if you like a man who’s in UPC or an apostolic church, you shouldn’t start wearing long skirts because his church equates long dresses to holiness. And you shouldn’t start dressing in black and chains to get a gothic or emo person’s attention when you know you only have three black outfits and all else is pastel and polo style! You shouldn’t act hard to get a thuggish guy’s attention because he’ll soon find out you’re fake and soft.

Now as far as manipulation is concerned, there are many ways to do this. I’ll use some examples that I have known people to use:

Examples:

Physical attraction manipulation – If you were going for the attention of a shallow guy, you might wear hair extensions, colored contacts, fake nails, false lashes, and a stuffed bra. You’ll buy freak ‘um dresses to show off your shape.

Sexual manipulation – I hear some people use animal pheromones to attract the opposite sex! Tiger urine might catch him, but when you’re not wearing it, he or she will probably quickly lose interest. When you see the guy or girl losing interest, you might try to bed them and try any kinky thing or kama sutra position to regain their attention.

Emotional manipulation – “I can’t believe you’re doing this to me! After all I’ve done for you! *cry* I paid for your car to get fixed. I gave you my virginity! I let you meet my parents! *sob* Every man I’ve ever dated has played me. I guess you’re just like all the rest. I thought you were a good guy. Guess I was wrong about you.”

Threat manipulation – You also might threaten the guy or girl if they try to leave you. “I’ll sleep with your best friend if you leave! I know all your secrets. I’ll tell everyone! I won’t let you see our daughter or son anymore if you leave me for her! I want my car and all those clothes I bought you back! I think I might be pregnant with your baby.”

Role-reversal/mind game manipulation – If you know he’s distant, you’ll mimic his behavior to play mind games to make him call you. You’ll go out if he goes out even if you don’t want to, just to keep his mind wondering where you are. You’ll flirt with his friends to keep him at least a little jealous and worried about one of them dating you even though he doesn’t like you enough to date you. You’ll lie about things to make him insecure, “All the other women are just using you for your money. I’m the only women who loves you for who you are.”

Ego manipulation – You pretend that he is a big, strong man who is your knight-in-shining armor so that his ego will be stroked and so that he’ll stay around for more ego stroking. Flattery. “You’re the best (boyfriend) I’ve ever had!”

Friend and family manipulation – You try to get in his mom and sister’s good graces so that they can argue on your behalf when he dumps you or considers dumping you.

But do you really want a guy that you’ll have to keep pulling tricks out of your hat to keep? You live in constant fear that he will leave you. Because your problem and solution lies in him, he somewhat controls your emotions and thoughts and actions because all you think about is if or when he is going to leave you and how to keep him with you. You’ll spend so much time manipulating, that you’ll have little time to enjoy and build the relationship.

Now which of the following scenarios makes more sense?

1. Find a guy who has little to no interest in you. Read up on magazine and internet articles and books to find out how to get his interest. Once you get even a bit of his interest, read even more books and articles and ask your friends for ways to make him be with you for at least a while longer. When you get that far, read yet more books and articles and advice columns to get him not leave you yet.

OR

2. Handle your own business. Work on being the best you that you can be, and wait until a guy approaches you that actually likes you for your true and best you.

What is the purpose of prolonging the inevitable? If this guy or girl was never meant for you, then you’re wasting your life and the time you could be spending with someone better suited for and appreciative of the real you.

Here’s what I used to do when I was a teenager in college. I have no shame being transparent with the mistakes and choices that I made because they are not me anymore. Well, I had a boyfriend that I really liked. When I thought he was thinking of leaving me (and it was all in my mind), I would talk to my friends who didn’t even have a man and ask them what I should do. I’d buy “Freak ‘Um Dresses” to best compliment my shape, I’d go to a club where I know he’d be, and I’d try my best to make him notice. I’d flirt with his friends to make him jealous. Then his friends would comment to him how great I looked that night. Of course, men are visual beings, so he always let me know he liked what he saw. My freshman year of college, I wanted to eliminate most of the competition with the other freshmen, so I got long extensions, I got some green contact lenses, and I wore make up a lot.

I’m not saying that light colored eyes makes everyone look more attractive. I’m just saying what I used to do. And I’m also not saying that women can’t improve their looks; wearing eyeliner doesn’t make you a phony! But I’ve heard of women who go to the extreme with their outer appearance even with just make-up. I heard of a female MINISTER who admitted to sleeping in her make-up so that her husband won’t wake up to her raggedy face! Some women will go the extreme (Los Angeles ladies) and will get cheek implants, breast implants, butt implants, lip injections, rhinoplasty, facelift, liposuction, Botox, so forth and so on. There are some Indian and Black women who bleach their skin because fairer or lighter skin is more attractive to some men. (Michael Jackson thought he’d look better, but look what happened to him!)

Now what kind of men do you suppose that these women attract? They are probably shallow, superficial men who will leave them as soon as they gain five pounds or start to sag. I want a man who will be with me if (God forbid) I get terribly burned in a fire or become a paraplegic. Sickness and in health, nah mean?

I always believed that my hubby would find me when I was checking the mailbox with my sleeping clothes on (in my family, we don’t wear pajamas. We wear terry cloth or yoga pants and raggedy t-shirts that we call sleeping clothes lol). I’d have on my glasses (remember when Marilyn Monroe sang that song, “Men Don’t Make Passes at Girls that Wear Glasses”?). And I’d have on absolutely no make-up and my hair would be a hot mess. Then I’d know he’d be there for the long haul and for the REAL me. And if I gained a lot of unattractive weight, he’d still be there to say, “You’re beautiful.” When I’m in the delivery room in labor with sweat pouring down my face and I’m swollen and screaming, he’ll say, “You’re beautiful.” And when I’m 80 years old, saggy and wrinkled, smelly, in a Hover Round, suffering from Alzheimer’s, and unable to give him sex, he’ll still say, “You’re beautiful.”

Manipulation may work for a year, but sooner or later you’ll get tired of all that hard work, and you’ll just want a relationship that’s smooth. I know every worthwhile relationship and marriage has its struggles and trials, but I sure don’t want that mess before the relationship begins. I have never let my boyfriends see me in my glasses, for fear of looking geeky. I never leave the house without my hair looking decent. And maybe that’s part of being a woman with good self-respect making sure that she’s presentable in public. But at the same time, you have to accept yourself as you are and sell that.

There’s a book called Marriable that is written by a married couple. In one chapter, they talk about one’s “marriability factor”. Everyone has an idea of what they’re selling. For example, which of the following has a better chance at getting a good husband?

1. Latasha, who has a Master’s Degree in Nuclear Engineering. She’s in shape. She has clear skin. She has a nice car and her own home. She has hobbies and talents. She has a good reputation, she has good hygiene, and has resolved most of her emotional issues. She also has good tastes in clothes.

2. Janet, who is a high school dropout. She’s known around town for being promiscuous and a cheater. She has bad acne, she rides a bike, and she lives with her parents. She’s 50 pounds overweight, she smells, and all her exes say she’s a basketcase and possessive. She wears either disgustingly tight or sloppily loose clothing.

Now if Janet and Latasha are looking to marry a man who has much to offer, he’d probably pick Latasha because she has more to offer which increases her marriability factor. It works the same way in high school. The quarterback dates the head cheerleader and not the shy recluse of a bookworm who cares less about her looks.

No, dude’s not shallow. He just knows that he’s getting more for his buck with the first girl. So I do believe women should work on their marriability instead of just saying, “a truly good guy will like me for me.” Even the most devout of Christian men would prefer an attractive, healthy woman to a rough-looking, sloppy woman. You need to be the BEST you. Be the best Janet, and he might go for you. You don’t have to be well-educated, but you should finish what you started in high school. You don’t have to starve yourself, but you shouldn’t remain obese to the point that you’re inactive and unhealthy. It’s not hard to have good hygeine. Soap, shampoo, deo, and toothpaste are the basics. I bet Janet wouldn’t settle for a man who lived with his grandparents and who didn’t have a car. So she can’t expect much of a chance from a man who does have his own place and his own ride.

So I think women should be the best them they can be. If God gave you brown eyes, dress them up if you please with make-up every once in a while, but think twice about wearing fake colored-lenses just because a certain dude might prefer light-colored eyes. Because when you get sick of being hazel or blue, he might get sick of you if he’s shallow enough. If you’re big-boned, get healthy, but don’t starve yourself to be Nicole Richie. Because if that weight comes back on, you want to make sure the relationship is still on. If you’re feisty and assertive, don’t be overly aggressive and rude, but you don’t have to be a milquetoast. Because when he gets around your family and friends, he’ll know you to be a fiesty fake. Be your best you, that way when the right guy comes along, you won’t have to change much or do much more or do nothing at all to keep him interested in YOU.

But if you want the wrong guy or a guy you will have to manipulate, here’s what you can continue to do for the duration of the relationship:

1. Stock up on a lot of MAC because you’re expecting to spend a lot of time with him with a flawless face.

2. Get a credit card to buy a whole lot of sexy clothes to keep him interested.

3. Save up a lot of money for weave and fake nails and padded bras to keep your sexy up.

4. Stock up on Redbook and Cosmopolitan for info on how to keep your man

5. Do a lot for him so that you can give him a guilt trip when he tells you it’s not working out.

6. Buy a kama sutra manual to learn awkward positions to keep him impressed

7. Flirt with all his friends to make him jealous

8. Prepare to compromise some of your beliefs and convictions to keep him happy

9. Spend many a sleepless night wondering if you’re wasting your time on this 90-10 relationship (he does 10 of the work keeping the relationship in existence, and you do 90%)

10. Spend the entire relationship waiting for the inevitable time when all your tricks run out and he gets bored with the girl that you are and that he never did like and leaves for someone he does.

“There is no disguise that can hide love for long where it exists, or simulate it where it does not.” – La Rochefoucauld