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posted
Hello,

It’s exciting to be here, to stumble upon this website/forum. I was Googling “encounters with Angels” when I came upon this website. With the word “shalom” at first, I thought it was a Jewish sight, and almost did not read any further because I’m not Jewish, and then I saw it was a Christian sight.

I had no idea there is a thing called “Christian Spirituality”. I have only recently become familiar with Charasmatic Christianity, which seems to be related to this website from what I’ve understood from what I’ve read.

About me: I grew up in the 1960s and 1970s attending the “Church of Christ”. This is NOT the Mormons, as I’ve been asked many times. This is just a New Testament Gospel church, that emphasized the New Testament over the Old Testament. There were no charasmatic or spiritual activities going on in that church.

I have been reading some of your conversion experiences, and Wow! I never had one of those, but I’ve always thought I was born a Christian, perhaps converted before I was born. Starting when I was a little girl about 4, or 5, I would cry a lot when my parents would play hymns on the radio. They were NOT sad tears, but something inside me, when hearing lyrics that praised God, would become overwhelmed with emotion, and I would cry and cry. To the point where my parents complained and had to stop listening to hymns when I was around. I have had this experience sometimes as an adult too, and recently in the past month or two!, so I’ve still got “it” lol. My Dad did tell this story with the thought that perhaps I was special because I would cry, and I felt that perhaps something special had happened to me, but nothing came of that thought.

One time in the church I grew up in, I went to a service as an adult. The youth pastor sung The Lord’s Prayer, which I didn’t know had been put to music. Him singing those lyrics, caused me to burst into tears and cry loudly and uncontrollably. My fellow congregation members must have thought I was nuts, but I could not control myself.

As an adult, I stopped going to my home church and all churches regularly, and I figured I could develop my own relationship with God with some effort and some sincerity in facing God. And I seem to have done alright. I’ve read that people need church to keep in the faith, but it’s never been an issue for me. Plus I don’t like being told what to think and believe. I just like to take my life and thoughts to God in prayer on a regular basis.

I’ve had many encounters with God, Jesus and Angels along with miracles, over the decades. I’m coming to realize since reading this website and recently learning a bit about Charasmatic Christianity, that my experiences could be called “Christian Spiritual” experiences.

I could easily write a book just with my experiences over the decades alone, there have been so many of them. However, having said that, upon reading posts in your “Transformative Experiences” section, I haven’t read any experiences that are real similar to mine. But my only “practice” has been prayer, so perhaps that’s why.

I’ve also had ADCs spread throughout my Christian experiences. ADCs are “after-death communications” wherein I get a visit from a dead relative. These visits are often helpful. And it’s those visits that has put me on a quest to learn more about how ADCs fit into my Christian life. The only Bible verses that I’m aware that fits is:

Matthew 27:52-53: and the tombs broke open. The bodies of many holy people who had died were raised to life; They came out of the tombs after Jesus' resurrection and went into the holy city and appeared to many people. NIV

I pray about visits from dead relatives, that they NOT be evil spirits, and that God will remove them from me if they are. And my only answer has ever been “things will be okay.” None of my dead relatives have ever suggested anything evil, and I get lots of love, companionship and help from them, so I trust that God would jump up and down and warn me, or do something if I’m being led down the wrong path.

Recently it has occurred to me that perhaps my dead relatives are acting as Guardian Angels, as from all the stuff I’ve been reading in the past year, there are those who believe dead relatives can be one’s guardian angel. This makes sense in hindsight considering all the helpful things they have done to/for me. And that’s why I Googled “encounters with Angels” to learn more about Angel books and beliefs.

Part of my current quest is the desire to learn to have conversations with God, so I can get some answers out of Him, lol. I mean, because you can read books and talk to people, but I know that God is the only one who has my answers.

Despite all the encounters I’ve had With Jesus, God, Angels, they have 98% been on the terms of God, Jesus or Angel. So God, Jesus or Angels does NOT answer me upon demand, or often even upon request. At least I usually don’t think so.

So I’ve tried meditation a few times, and had a bit of a result. I have taken up meditating before, but I too often fall asleep while trying it.

One day years ago, I did a meditation and received past-life information regarding me and an important relationship in my life. That such information could come through a meditation, scared me so much, that I gave up meditating, again.

For many years I believed that meditating was NOT sanctioned in the Bible. But perhaps it is? I have read some stuff that says it is.

In years past, I have only read the non-Christian stuff about paranormal phenomena, cause I didn’t know where else to look. I did hear about speaking in tongues, but thought that stuff was unnecessary and stayed away from it. But I can see now that an inquiry to learn more about the Penetcostals, speaking in tongues, and the Charasmatic movement, might have led me here sooner, and/or have helped me sooner.

I have read a lot of Edgar Cayce material, since he was a Christian, but after reading lots of it, I am more skeptical about his input than when I first started reading it.

Anyhow … nice to meet you all Smiler

Please write any input or feedback that you can Smiler

AFlows
 
Posts: 11 | Location: Western Canada | Registered: 02 February 2017Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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A bit about some of my Christian Spiritual experiences: When it comes to Angels, I have always sensed there level of purity, and I have come across different levels, but I still knew they were God's Angels. It's the same with Spirits, I can sense who they are, and whether they are good, or someone to be wary of.

Anyway, one of my many experiences: In 1993 when the Gulf War was happening, I developed a fear that the Gulf War would turn into Armageddon. After I had the fear for awhile, I heard on a radio talk show that this fear was spreading around the U.S.

Anyway, one Sunday night when I was praying the Lord's Prayer, I got an immediate response to prayer. As soon as I finished praying, an Angel appeared to me (in my mind's eye) looking like a man, but I knew he was an Angel. He said to me "you don't need this" and he removed my fear of the Gulf War turning into Armageddon, and then he left.

The fear was immediately gone, but I thought it would come back the next day, but it never did come back.

After a few weeks I found myself thinking in my mind of yelling up to the Angel and saying "what about the rest of the crap that makes up my life, do I need that?" But he didn't take any of that away, so I guess I did/do need the rest of the crap that makes up my life.

That's just one of maybe 100 experiences that I've had over the last 35 years. I have not written a lot of them down, and at my age, I've started to forget some things. But then sometimes, I'll be thinking about something else, and a memory of a spiritual experience will come back to me.

It's good to be among people who have also had spiritual experiences Smiler.
 
Posts: 11 | Location: Western Canada | Registered: 02 February 2017Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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Welcome to the forum, AFlows. It sounds like you're a very spiritually open person. I'll just reply to two of what sound like inquiries you've shared.

Traditional Christian teaching has made a distinction between angels and deceased human beings. Angels are purely spiritual and never had a fleshly body; they were created by God to perform different kinds of service, including as guardians of nations, or individual people. Jesus makes mention of guardian angels, and the Bible has many references to angels bringing different messages. They usually communicate telepathically, or through dreams, though they sometimes can take a visible form, at least in our imagination.

Traditional teaching also affirms that our ancestors live on after death as disincarnate souls -- human spirits who will one day be re-united with their body. They can also communicate with us, and those who are with God belong to what we call the "communion of saints." We can talk to them and ask for their prayers, but it's discouraged to "conjure" them in divinations or seances and practices like that.

I don't know what you mean by "meditation," as the term has a different meaning in Christianity than in Eastern religions. In Christianity, it means reading and reflecting on Scripture or other sacred readings, and pondering how to put the teaching into practice in one's life. Eastern forms are often the complete opposite -- letting go of thoughts, just being aware, etc.

Hope that all helps somehow.
 
Posts: 3628 | Location: Wichita, KS | Registered: 27 December 2004Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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Dear Phil,

Thank you for your response. You wrote: "Angels are purely spiritual and never had a fleshly body;"

Can you please provide the scripture that says Angels never were humans? I was unable to find that scripture, thanks Smiler

I have also had several visits/messages from Angels who did not appear as people in my mind's eye, instead I could just sense "something" there, along with their purity level, without specific form.

You wrote about dead relatives: "They can also communicate with us, and those who are with God belong to what we call the "communion of saints." We can talk to them and ask for their prayers,"

Could you please provide the scriptural basis for what you've said above? Thank you.

Regarding my visits from dead relatives, I have never done any occult practice to summon them, they've always just appeared on their own.

Regarding my idea of meditation, I have recently been reading a book called "4 Keys to Hearing God's Voice" by Mark & Patti Virkler, and the book provides the following 4 steps to hearing God's voice, which is similar to the type of meditating I've done before: (more like 5 steps when broken down)

- be alone and still at a quiet place
- be ready to hear God’s voice as intuition or as spontaneous thoughts
- watch to see what God will say in answer to prayer by observing, perceiving, having a vision, discerning
- look for a vision of Jesus as you pray, having set the scenario up yourself from the start
- journal the flow of thoughts and pictures from God

The author of the book does not use the word "meditation". But it seems to me to be similar to meditation as I am familiar with it. The authors are Charasmatic Christians and have quite the website.

Thanks for your help.

AFlows
 
Posts: 11 | Location: Western Canada | Registered: 02 February 2017Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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Thanks for your reply, AFlows. I have a better idea where you're coming from.

I just did a quick search on google for "what the Bible teaches about angels" and came up with this link. There were other good ones, and I'm sure you'll find good replies to your question about the state of the soul in the afterlife (look up "intermediate state in the afterlife")
- http://christiananswers.net/q-acb/acb-t005.html

That sounds like an interesting meditation approach, but seems to overly emphasize visions and use of the imagination, in my opinion. But if that works for you at this time in life, that's what counts. Smiler
 
Posts: 3628 | Location: Wichita, KS | Registered: 27 December 2004Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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AFlows...thanks for sharing Smiler

I also grew up in the COC...but finally came to an impasse and moved on to explore richer aspects.

You know, it sounds like you may have been born Awake. I have two acquaintances who were as well, one of them being Vickie Gay who is one of the world's foremost psychics. Her challenges growing up were similar to yours. The other is Joseph Alexander, who's works are beginning to rival Joseph Campbell ("The Power of Myth"). In some ways, it's harder to cope with than Awakening later in life after some level of foundation is built to serve as a framework.

Welcome to the forum...
 
Posts: 113 | Location: Oregon | Registered: 18 December 2016Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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Thanks Phil for your response. I'll check that stuff out and get back to you.

Hi Les, what is COC?

I don't know what you mean by my challenges growing up. I only mentioned the crying, which I didn't feel was any kind of a challenge ... it just "was". The crying didn't happen all the time, by the way, mostly when I was 4 or 5, and otherwise just occasionally.

Sorry Les, I'm not familiar with some of your terms like "Awake", and I have never compared myself to a psychic. I didn't have any kind of experiences that I mention above, as a child, by the way Smiler. I don't know who Joseph Alexander or Joseph Campbell is.

Thanks for welcoming me to the forum Les. I'm just an average person, and have not given my experiences much thought. It was only the ADCs that put me on a quest, but I never had ADCs or experiences with God, Jesus, Angels until I became an adult.

Okay, I did have a vision from God to immediate answer to prayer when I was 4. But at the time, being 4 and all, I took it in stride, and it never even occurred to me to tell anyone. So I never did tell anyone, except you just now. And I have some unique pre-birth memories at age 12, which again, I never gave a second thought too.

So it would seem as though I've lived under a "spiritual rock", as it were, sorry about that. So I'm not familiar with your terms. But it's hard to compare myself to a psychic. I just grew up knowing that as a Christian you weren't supposed to consult psychics, and that's all I knew about psychics.

Please write more, it's interesting to find similar people Smiler

AFlows
 
Posts: 11 | Location: Western Canada | Registered: 02 February 2017Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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quote:
Originally posted by AFlows:
Hi Les, what is COC?


Church of Christ Smiler

quote:

I don't know what you mean by my challenges growing up. I only mentioned the crying, which I didn't feel was any kind of a challenge ... it just "was". The crying didn't happen all the time, by the way, mostly when I was 4 or 5, and otherwise just occasionally.


Ah, I misunderstood then. I took it as an ongoing challenge.


quote:
Sorry Les, I'm not familiar with some of your terms like "Awake",


https://t.co/ch9NimmJRi


quote:
I don't know who Joseph Alexander or Joseph Campbell is.


Authors with great insight into myth's hidden meanings. They tie out to the awakening journey, kundalini, and enlightenment.
 
Posts: 113 | Location: Oregon | Registered: 18 December 2016Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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Hi Phil and Everyone,

I read the Angel article you provided the link for, it was excellent, thank you. I will have to make a note of your Google search terms, cause using the right search terms is everything, I've found.

An experience of mine you might find interesting:

In 1981, when I was 21, I had what I saw in hindsight as my first ADC.

I was standing on a busy street corner, and I heard a voice behind me say "do up your jacket". This was because the wind was stirring up quickly out of nowhere.

I recognized the voice, it was my deceased Dad. He'd only been dead 3 years at that point. I turned around, and there was no one else standing on that street corner, and I looked in every direction.

At some point, perhaps before I looked, I heard an Angel take my Dad by the back of the neck (his shirt) and scold him for not helping me. I laughed a bit cause I knew my Dad just got scolded for trying to help me, but failing. Immediately what came to my mind was that my Dad was trying to learn to help me under the direction of an Angel, but he failed, at his first attempt.

My Dad was a very grumpy, rather abusive guy, so none of this surprised me.

At the time, I knew it was not my imagination, because my Dad's voice sounded very real, like he was real. When I first turned around looking for the source of the voice, I was expecting to find a man, with a voice that sounded exactly like my Dad's, but there was no one there, and no one walking away from the corner.

As the years went by, I came to categorize the experience as an ADC. It was my first ADC, and I never had another one until 10 years later.

Whether my Dad was training to work as some sort of Angel or helper, it can't be determined for sure. Going from your article Phil, there are a wide-range of Angels, who perhaps recruit assistants amongst a person's deceased family members. I don't know for sure, just sharing my thoughts and experience. Smiler Hope ya'll find it interesting Smiler

AFlows
 
Posts: 11 | Location: Western Canada | Registered: 02 February 2017Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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Hi Les,

Thanks for the article about what "Awake" is. It was exciting to read.

"Mysticism, according to its historical and psychological definitions, is the direct intuition or experience of God;" - Evelyn Underhill

I guess that makes me a mystic, lol, I've never thought of myself that way Smiler.

When I was 4, I prayed and told God that my family was mean to me, and I wanted to quit this life. He immediately answered me with an amazing vision.

He took me back to moments before I was born. There were 2 beings with me, dressed in brown robes with ropes for belts (monk outfits I realized years later). I asked them once again, right before sliding down a tunnel into my baby body, if the life I had chosen was "do-able". They checked with God again, and said yes.

But God also reminded me that he warned me that I was biting off more than I could chew do to the health conditions I would have as an adult. But no, I didn't listen to God, and chose my own life plan. I learned the hard way, always listen to God's plan for your life, because He is right !

Maybe it because I was 4, and I still had the "psychic awareness" that psychics say children have until they out-grow it. But at the time, I thought nothing of the vision, and just went on with my life.

That vision did sustain me though as I went through my difficult childhood.

God never favored me because He appeared to me, or gave me help and miracles. In fact, most of my adult life I have been frustrated that I can pray about things, and get seemingly no answer. So I've never thought of myself as particularly close to God.

These days sometimes when I get frustrated with God, I tell him, "I know you can hear me", because He will answer immediately sometimes, if He chooses to.

So it's quite interesting and exciting to learn that I am, or may be a Christian mystic. I have never received a prophecy about anything from God or any other subject, and I don't really want to, cause I'm not the type that wants to stir the pot so to speak, lol.

This is all interesting, and a bit overwhelming Smiler. Thanks for writing Les. Smiler

P.S. I did NOT know that people typically went through an "awakening" process. I had no idea that was a "thing" or was necessary. Do you think a lot of Christians have had an "awakening?" Do you think a lot of Christians have had an "awakening?"
 
Posts: 11 | Location: Western Canada | Registered: 02 February 2017Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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Please Phil, could you help with the below? Thanks Smiler

quote:
Originally posted by AFlows:

You wrote about dead relatives: "They can also communicate with us, and those who are with God belong to what we call the "communion of saints." We can talk to them and ask for their prayers,"

Could you please provide the scriptural basis for what you've said above? Thank you.

AFlows
 
Posts: 11 | Location: Western Canada | Registered: 02 February 2017Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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[QUOTE]Originally posted by AFlows:
Hi Les,

Thanks for the article about what "Awake" is. It was exciting to read.

"Mysticism, according to its historical and psychological definitions, is the direct intuition or experience of God;" - Evelyn Underhill

I guess that makes me a mystic, lol, I've never thought of myself that way Smiler.

When I was 4, I prayed and told God that my family was mean to me, and I wanted to quit this life. He immediately answered me with an amazing vision.

He took me back to moments before I was born. There were 2 beings with me, dressed in brown robes with ropes for belts (monk outfits I realized years later). I asked them once again, right before sliding down a tunnel into my baby body, if the life I had chosen was "do-able". They checked with God again, and said yes.

But God also reminded me that he warned me that I was biting off more than I could chew do to the health conditions I would have as an adult. But no, I didn't listen to God, and chose my own life plan. I learned the hard way, always listen to God's plan for your life, because He is right !

Maybe it because I was 4, and I still had the "psychic awareness" that psychics say children have until they out-grow it. But at the time, I thought nothing of the vision, and just went on with my life.

That vision did sustain me though as I went through my difficult childhood.

God never favored me because He appeared to me, or gave me help and miracles. In fact, most of my adult life I have been frustrated that I can pray about things, and get seemingly no answer. So I've never thought of myself as particularly close to God.

These days sometimes when I get frustrated with God, I tell him, "I know you can hear me", because He will answer immediately sometimes, if He chooses to.

So it's quite interesting and exciting to learn that I am, or may be a Christian mystic. I have never received a prophecy about anything from God or any other subject, and I don't really want to, cause I'm not the type that wants to stir the pot so to speak, lol.

This is all interesting, and a bit overwhelming Smiler. Thanks for writing Les. Smiler

P.S. I did NOT know that people typically went through an "awakening" process. I had no idea that was a "thing" or was necessary. Do you think a lot of Christians have had an "awakening?"
 
Posts: 11 | Location: Western Canada | Registered: 02 February 2017Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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Hello, AFlows

quote:
Originally posted by AFlows:
Do you think a lot of Christians have had an "awakening?"


I will give you my answer: YES!! In the Bible, awakening is called "being born again," because it feels like you have been born again after a good, strong awakening.
 
Posts: 955 | Location: Canada | Registered: 03 April 2009Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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quote:
I asked them once again, right before sliding down a tunnel into my baby body...


AFlows,

Interesting... one of the experiences I removed from the paper was similar. In 1989 I was working with another performance coach when he suggested I undergo a past life regression to see if there were any limiting beliefs that might get in the way of increasing performance, so I did. After going through the regression (I was a Mennonite carpenter in that life), he then led me to the 'in-between', just before I was born into this incarnation. I was there with another just outside this dimension, excited for the adventure of this life, looking down at the delivery room, my mother, the doctor, nurses, and even noticed the clock on the wall. When it was time, I turned to my friend and bid farewell, then slid into this body just as I was being born. Wow! Talk about an assault on ones psyche... the sheer onslaught of all the sounds, light, temperature, etc. on the senses was incredible!

quote:
P.S. I did NOT know that people typically went through an "awakening" process. I had no idea that was a "thing" or was necessary. Do you think a lot of Christians have had an "awakening?"


To be clear, "Awakening" is any expansion of conscious awareness that moves us closer to our true Self (pure conscious awareness)... whereas "Awakened" is when our true Self emerges in direct contrast to our Mind/Ego (mind chatter) like I referred to in the story when I was driving back from camp. It usually occurs after practicing meditation for some time, which tends to create a gradual separation of the 'observer' from the 'doer'.
 
Posts: 113 | Location: Oregon | Registered: 18 December 2016Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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Hi Les,

What is your performance coach connected to? Your church, or spiritual group?

Back in 1981 I was hypnotized to see if I would remember a past life, and I did remember one, but I have never really believed what I remembered, because the whole thing seemed similar to a regular sleep-dream. It would have had to been more vivid or seemed more real for me to believe it.

In 2004 I went to a psychologist, who turned out to be a psychic, and she told me of a past-life that I had with a certain special relationship, and I tended to believe that more because the situation fit how I felt about that person in this life. But who knows if it's correct, or not. I've prayed about that, but never received a response.

About you sliding into your baby body, you probably were anticipating the "assault to your psyche" so you probably did okay.

Part of my vision of sliding into my baby body, was a picture in my mind right after being born of bright lights in the room.

Those are neat pre-birth experiences we've both had. I was an adult before I started to think that there was anything extraordinary about my pre-birth vision at age 4.

Thanks for your clearer definition about being "Awake". Smiler
 
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I'd be a little cautious about attaching much significance to "pre-birth" and past life intuitions, knowings, etc. Personally, I do not believe in reincarnation, but even in those religious traditions where it's taught, it's discouraged to go digging around to find out what those earlier "lives" were like. This life is the one that matters.

quote:
So it's quite interesting and exciting to learn that I am, or may be a Christian mystic. I have never received a prophecy about anything from God or any other subject, and I don't really want to, cause I'm not the type that wants to stir the pot so to speak, lol.


People use the term "mystic" quite loosely these days, it seems, but one is no more favored by God for being one than not. I know many very holy people who are obviously filled with the Holy Spirit and who have very few mystical experiences and no sign of kundalini phenomena. What is important is to be who you are, and to draw closer to God in the ways that God calls you to. That's not always clear, of course, and can take some time to discern.
 
Posts: 3628 | Location: Wichita, KS | Registered: 27 December 2004Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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quote:
Originally posted by Phil:
I'd be a little cautious about attaching much significance to "pre-birth" and past life intuitions, knowings, etc. Personally, I do not believe in reincarnation, but even in those religious traditions where it's taught, it's discouraged to go digging around to find out what those earlier "lives" were like. This life is the one that matters.


Well put. FWIW, I came across an interesting page some time back regarding Christianity and Reincarnation which offers some fodder for the topic...

http://ocoy.org/original-chris...ve-in-reincarnation/
 
Posts: 113 | Location: Oregon | Registered: 18 December 2016Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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quote:
Originally posted by AFlows:
What is your performance coach connected to? Your church, or spiritual group?


He was one of several, and ironically, had mixed feelings on reincarnation himself. He was an independent counselor, held Christian beliefs, though I'm not sure which denomination he belonged to.

I've always had very lucid, usually controllable dreams, though these days I can actually remain consciously aware (the Self) while I (mind/ego) sleep if I prefer. A bit trippy when it first occurred, but at times it can be quite useful. The regression experience was along these lines. What I really benefited from, was the remembrance of birth in very concrete terms. It opened up an onslaught of memories, which I confirmed in conversations with my mom. She was a little stunned.

While the regression experience opened the door for me to the possibility of reincarnation, the Illumination experience confirmed it. When one is immersed in God, things simply become 'known'. Not trivial things like science or math (etc.), but profound concepts about the true nature of existence. Most everything here is expressed in linear terms. There, all is non-linear.
 
Posts: 113 | Location: Oregon | Registered: 18 December 2016Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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quote:
Personally, I do not believe in reincarnation, but even in those religious traditions where it's taught, it's discouraged to go digging around to find out what those earlier "lives" were like. This life is the one that matters.


Phil,

I found this similar posit (rather apropos and quite to the point) on the subject on another page on that site (http://ocoy.org/the-authentic-christian-view-on-reincarnation/)...

>>My favorite comment on the subject of reincarnation is that given by the holy Roman Catholic Capuchin stigmatist-saint, Padre Pio. When one of his spiritual daughters was “told on” for believing in reincarnation, he told her accusers very firmly: “It does not matter what you believe about reincarnation. The only thing that matters is this: Are you seeking for God now?”
 
Posts: 113 | Location: Oregon | Registered: 18 December 2016Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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quote:
Originally posted by Les:. . .I came across an interesting page some time back regarding Christianity and Reincarnation which offers some fodder for the topic...

http://ocoy.org/original-chris...ve-in-reincarnation/


Yes, I've seen that page before. There are numerous errors on it and significant omissions about Church teachings and clarifications.

I presented a webinar on this topic last year. This youtube link includes a segment on it, and there's a link to the full teaching. Your quote by Padre Pio is a good one. Thanks for sharing.

Youtube teaching: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=bqmXGKGo6g0
 
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