This morning I woke and the first words I heard were, "Tt's Contagious!" I thought to myself, "God, what is contagious?" His response was depression, sadness, anger, bitterness. It can also go in reverse with happiness, peacefulness, thankfulness, cheerfulness. I laid there and pondered this, and I realized what He was sharing. It brought me back to a time in my life ... really numerous times, both good and bad ... where I was the receiver of another person's emotions, but it also reminded me when I was the giver too. Sadly I spent more years of my life thus far being the giver rather than the receiver.
I was a single parent. My son was probably only a couple years of age. We lived alone and I was a young Christian. Life was very difficult for me, both emotionally and physically. I brought a lot upon myself, but it was hard nevertheless. As a babe-in-Christ, I knew enough to know that I had to protect my world from the enemy because we embarked upon a spiritual warfare daily. I did not know enough about putting on the whole armor of God to protect myself.
My home was my safe haven, literally!! When I would open my door to leave my home, I was entering the battle zone. When I re-entered my door to return home, I could feel the peace and presence of Him as I swung my door wide and stepped inside. My house was my safe haven in life. I protected it as such. His presence was welcome and I made the environment one in which He found pleasing to reside.
One day I realized that my safe haven was changing. I was feeling weakened as I would enter my home. I could sense the feeling of restlessness, depression, sadness. At first I was not quick to understand what was happening, but then I realized what I had done. I had allowed the spirits of restlessness, depression, sadness, etc., to reside in my home. Little by little ... ever so slightly ... they were consuming my environment and I was catching those emotions the more I was around them. Why and how? I had brought someone to stay with me for awhile that was fighting demons of their own. This individual was in a very bad place in life so they were surrounded with these types of emotions. The longer they stayed,the more my environment became poisoned. I had allowed those poisons to be released into my home and they were pressing out His spirit. Everyday I returned from work, there was less of Him and more of the enemy.
I tried to share this with my guest, but they were not at a place in their life where they could understand what I was saying. They were where I spent the majority of my life before coming to Him. How could I expect anyone else to understand when I never understood prior to being set free? I finally had to ask this individual to leave, and it broke my heart so badly. I do not think they believed it effected me, but they will never know how much. I had no choice. No amount of talking was changing the situation, and it was getting worse daily. I was seeping into the same depression they were in, and it was effecting everything ... my moods at work, my desire to praise and worship, my relationship with my son, my church attendance, etc. I was steadily allowing the wrong spirits in my home to rule.
I believe we are all surrounded with a type of spirit. We tote it around like a necklace. As with all things, it is a choice as to what type of spirit. Again, as I say often and not enough times, choosing is not always easy and it can be down right difficult, but it is still something we have to do over and over and over again. I heard a Pastor preach on carrying spirits within us . It took me awhile to understand exactly what he meant. Then one day it just clicked and I could see it very clearly. When I was a party girl, hanging out in bars and the likes, I had that bar-type of spirit about me. Now before you get all up in the air and say I am 'judging', I am not. I am only sharing where I was versus where I am. Back in the day, I could walk into a bar and no sooner the door would shut, I was being hit on. I had that spirit that said, "Hey, let's party!"
When I gave that lifestyle up, I still went to bars in the early days but I was losing that party mentality. I could sense people were looking at me differently. Right after I heard the sermon on spirits, I was still young in my faith and not bad to look at, I went to an old stomping place with a friend. As we walked in the door, I was the same externally as always ... pleasing to the eyes, single, known as a partier ... but things were different. There was something about me that made others perceive me differently, and I knew it. It was not long before I realized what it was ... it was the spirit I was carrying around! It was no longer that 'party spirit' but it was more of 'His Spirit'. People could sense that ... they could see that ... and I am sure to the people in the bar, it was confusing. It was to me until God opened my eyes to know what it was. I have never looked back. Now when men look at me I feel it is more out of respect and reverence. Sure you will always have those crazy, young onlookers out there who know no better and will be rude and obnoxious, but I prefer the respect and reverence now. I have allowed God to change the spirit that I am embraced in. It gets me through life ... the difficult times, the good times. You choose which spirit you will contain.
Going back to our homes, it is true in that it is our safe haven. The moment you step outside of your door, you are entering the world ... a war zone! I sense this more and more everyday. My home has to be filled with His presence more than the presence of other things. I need to feel that His Spirit would be happy residing here. You have to be careful what you allow into your safe haven, whether it is through the front door, through the computer, through the television, through books, etc. Everything you bring into your home has the prospect of bringing the wrong spirit with it and running some of His Spirit out. Do not allow the things of this world or of others to be contagious to you? Be very, very careful and do not lack wisdom. Evil spirits are like a cold ... they seep in very gradually unbeknownst to you. One day you wake up and realize you are sick. You wonder when it started, and before you know it, it is too late. Sure you can recover from the cold, but depending on what you allowed yourself to be surrounded with, the journey back could be very emotionally draining and spiritually challenging. Put on the whole armor today and never take it off.
I also realize that we may not always have total control over our homes ... over our workplace. We may be in situations where we do not control what spirits we have to be around daily. There are a lot of women who are married to non-Christian men and vice versa. They do not have total control of what they have on their televisions ... what they hear on the radio ... what books are in their homes, etc. You may work around people who do not believe as you do and you have to deal with the spirits they carry around daily ... spirits of anger, bitterness, etc. I get this. In these instances, it is up to you to put on His armor daily and fight the good fight. You can still put in more good than bad ... more light than darkness ... by spending time in His word. By listening to His music when in your car ... by praying ... by fellowshipping with like-minded Christians, you can put more of Him into your heart and mind then what the world is pouring into you.
Life is a battle zone and it is becoming worse daily. You have to constantly program your thoughts towards Him and His Word, or the world will eat you alive. Walk in faith daily knowing that He is in charge. Keep your eyes looking up and remove them from self. He truly and for sure is the ONLY WAY!!!
Romans 13:12 "The night is far spent, the day is at hand. Therefore let us cast off the works of darkness, and let us put on the armor of light."
Ephesians 6:11-"Put on the whole armor of God, that you may be able to stand against the wiles of the devil. For we do not wrestle against flesh and blood, but against principalities, against powers, against the rulers of the darkness of this age, against spiritual hosts of wickedness in the heavenly places. Therefore take up the whole armor of God, that you may be able to withstand in the evil day, and having done all, to stand. Stand therefore, having girded your waist with truth, having put on the breastplate of righteousness, and having shod your feet with the preparation of the gospel of peace; above all, taking the shield of faith with which you will be able to quench all the fiery darts of the wicked one. And take the helmet of salvation, and the sword of the Spirit, which is the word of God; praying always with all prayer and supplication in the Spirit, being watchful to this end with all perseverance and supplication for all the saints ..."