Tuesday, August 20, 2019

Saved from the darkness: My Testimony

I was deeply into new age teachings for many years. I was on a constant, desperate search.

Sometimes I would feel happy and blissful, but they were always temporary feelings. Then I would
quickly feel empty again.

I also experienced deep depression and suicidal thoughts, and intense anxiety. Often the anxiety was so intense, it was physically painful.

I would constantly read books and articles about the law of attraction and the power of our thoughts. I attended seminars about energy healing and I have had many energy healing sessions over the years. I would feel better for a little while, but I was always left feeling incomplete. I had many psychic readings, angel card readings, and even learned how to do angel card readings for myself. I did guided meditations, yoga, and listened to Abraham Hicks every day. I even learned how to channel and practiced with a friend on a weekly basis for years. I also did automatic writing, which is another form of channeling. I did tons of law of attraction exercises and practices, including scripting, visualization, vision boards, positive affirmations and more...I did these things for about 16 years.

All of these things led me nowhere. In fact, I was feeling more and more lost and hopeless as time went on.

It's important to take care of yourself with good nutrition, exercise, sleep, etc, but the types of goals I had were mostly materialistic desires: make a lot of money, buy a fancy house and fancy cars, get the perfect body, find the perfect guy, etc.

Even after all those years of practicing those techniques, none of those goals came to fruition!
I realize now it's because I was completely turned away from God without even knowing it. If you look up the origins of the law of attraction, it is downright frightening. These teachings come from
the enemy. His main tool is deception. And I was massively deceived.

Millions of people have fallen prey to this deception.

These false and dangerous teachings are sprinkled with some truth. Many of them even have references to the Bible! The main goal of these teachings is to lead people away from God.

This past July, I was (yet again) deep into watching law of attraction videos on YouTube, trying to find new techniques that might help me escape my misery. I was feeling so lost and completely exhausted from the daily grind of stress, anxiety, and depression, searching for something that would finally help me.

One of the suggested videos was from a Christian ministry. It was a testimony from a girl who was deep into new age teachings. She was having disturbing experiences and she was so lost in that world. The video was shocking enough to make me realize I was also as lost as her!

I watched a few more "new age to Jesus" testimonies,  including Doreen Virtue's testimony. When I watched her testimony, I stopped what I was doing and prayed to God to forgive me for messing with the work of the enemy. Right then and there I asked Jesus to be my Lord and Savior. I cried so hard and felt so many emotions: relief that God had saved me, sadness for all the years I was lost, guilt for playing with fire for so many years...I was so incredibly grateful that God saved me from that darkness. I truly felt the words of Amazing Grace: I once was lost, but now I'm found.

I immediately threw away every single new age book and anything remotely related to the occult. I was shocked at how many books I had! The search was endless because it did not lead to the truth.

The truth is there is only one God, the Creator of the entire universe, and there is only one way to get to Him, and that is through Jesus Christ. Every other search is fruitless.

In future posts, I will write about the origins of the law of attraction, the false Jesus (scary but true), the danger of angel cards, the danger of channeling, the truth about psychic readings, the truth about yoga, as well as the other many dangers and deceptions of the new age.

I first came to Jesus when I was about 20 years old. That was twenty years ago! One night, I was flipping through the channels on tv, and I landed on a Christian show. At the end of the show, they said, if you would like to ask Jesus to be your Lord and Savior, you can pray this prayer. I don't remember the exact words but I asked Jesus Christ to be my Lord and Savior. I remember after praying that prayer (some refer to it as the sinner's prayer), I understood who Jesus really is and I wanted to read the Bible for the first time in my life.

After coming to Jesus at that young age, I don't think I really knew how to stay on the path. I had a hard time finding a church and I'm sure there were a lot of things I didn't understand.
I don't remember the exact moment, but soon after that, I was led so far away from Jesus. I attended the Institute for Integrative Nutrition in person in 2003.. There, I was exposed to reincarnation, yoga, meditation, and other religions and beliefs. I think that partially contributed to me walking away from Jesus.

I am so grateful every day, and I often cry tears of immense gratitude, but I sometimes wonder if I would have had a family or a different life altogether. I know that God has a plan for me and I trust Him. Now I want to expose the truth about the new age so that other people don't get swept up in that dangerous world.

Over the years, I experienced sleep paralysis. During those episodes, I would feel a very scary presence, and I would not be able to move or talk. It was also hard to breathe. Sometimes I would not be able to breathe at all for a few seconds. I could physically feel that presence and it would try to hold me down. Somehow I had the idea to call out to Jesus. When I could finally speak and say his name out loud, that scary presence would immediately leave, and I would be able to move and breathe.

I realize now exactly what was happening. It was a demon trying to torment me. You don't have to be afraid, and I'm no longer afraid because I know that God is with me. And demons flee when you call on Jesus and say the name of Jesus Christ out loud.

If you go to YouTube and type "new age to Jesus" in the search box, you'll be astounded at how many testimonies there are. When you are in the new age, you can't see the deception. But as soon as you turn away from it and turn towards God, it all makes complete sense.

Now I feel so much peace and I know that God has a purpose for my life. I no longer have that horrible anxiety. I feel and know that God is always with me. The suicidal thoughts have completely disappeared. Completely! I no longer have depression. I no longer have road rage. Of course I still experience stress at work and while driving, but now it doesn't ruin my entire day or bring me down.
I am so immensely grateful and I want to share how life-changing this has been. I feel like a new person.

God can rescue you from the darkness if you turn to Him and ask for help!

Friday, October 20, 2017

From Paleo to Plant-Based: My Reawakening

I feel a strong sense of responsibility to tell you guys that going paleo has actually been very detrimental to my health. And I apologize for inspiring some of you to try it. 

I had been following the paleo diet since 2011. In 2015, I committed to my first Whole30, which is a strict version of paleo. Over the course of ten months, I lost about 30 pounds and everyone around me noticed. I was so excited and grateful because I thought I found the perfect diet. 

Yes I lost weight but what I didn’t mention was that I felt tired all the time and that I’ve been having serious gynecological issues, which have escalated over the last year or two. 

I was so convinced that paleo was the answer and the healthiest way to eat. But I’ve recently had a reawakening, which was sparked by an article I read by Cyrena Jacoby, Nutritional Therapist, which you can read here

In this article, Cyrena talks about the risks of consuming such high quantities of animal products, specifically relating to my health issue (ovarian cysts and other issues), but also relating to health in general. 

I was eating meat 3 or sometimes 4 times a day. I recently added cheese into the mix again, and my body has been struggling. 

I have also put some of the weight back on and I haven’t been able to lose it for over a year now, despite my biggest efforts. 

My jeans are tight but more importantly, my health issues have not been resolved even after multiple doctor visits and trying to tweak my paleo diet in a million ways. 

The paleo movement, and more recently the keto movement, are very misleading. 
Yes you can lose weight initially, but then you will stall because the body can’t thrive on this diet long term. 

Everything I am reading about the whole-food plant-based diet makes sense to me. I’ve been doing this for 9 days and I already feel better. I have more mental clarity, less anxiety, and overall I feel really good. 

It’s just the beginning. The true test will be to see if my medical issues clear up. And I have strong faith that they will!

Friday, September 1, 2017

The Immeasurable Rewards of Practicing Gratitude

You might knock the idea of “The Secret,” or the law of attraction, and it’s understandable. The movie was a flashy way of explaining to people how to get cars and houses and all kinds of material possessions. None of that really matters, and I don’t think that was the entire point of the movie. 

What I gained from the movie is that our thoughts are powerful. Our state of mind affects our experiences every single day. And the most important thing I’ve gained is a sense of empowerment, knowing that I can choose my own thoughts.

One major thing I learned that is life-changing, when applied, is the practice of gratitude. If you write down a list of ten things you are grateful for, every day, and why you feel grateful for them, you’ll generate a beautiful sense of well-being, and you’ll in turn create and experience more things to feel grateful for. That’s how it works! In the beginning, it will feel forced, unnatural, and maybe even like a chore. You’ll feel major resistance, but push through it in the beginning, because the rewards of doing a consistent gratitude practice are immeasurable! 

To take it further, start expressing gratitude towards the people in your life who you care about. Write hand-written thank you cards and give them to the people you’re grateful for. Take photographs of who and what you’re grateful for and describe exactly why you appreciate and enjoy every aspect of each one. 

Imagine how wonderful life can be when gratitude, appreciation, presence, enjoyment, and delight are part of your everyday experience of life! 

(photo by me!)

Saturday, July 29, 2017

The Beautiful Results of Practicing Gratitude

Some things that have been happening since I've been actively practicing gratitude:

As soon as I walked up to the pathway of my apartment building, the water sprinklers shut off. Usually, my legs and my bags get a good sprinkling of water!

I picked a slow express lane at the supermarket today, and I was starting to feel frustrated because the woman in front of me had a lot of stuff. But as soon as the cashier said hello to me, her lovely smile completely melted my frustration. She was so friendly and sweet, and 5 foot 10; only an inch shorter than me. I love meeting other tall women! Our interaction was so refreshing and delightful, and I realized I chose the perfect lane, and I realized rushing isn't everything!

Two things at work got repaired. A light fixture that had been out for about a month was finally working! And the tube for the microdermabrasion machine was replaced. The previous one was way too long and cumbersome, and it was also pretty clogged. The new one is easier to work with and so clean!

I thought of a friend I hadn't talked to in a while so I texted her to say hello. I then noticed how beautiful the sun was shining on the trees outside. I looked outside and noticed how beautiful the sunset was and I wanted to take a picture of it. As soon as I walked outside, she texted me a picture of the sunset view from her balcony! The timing was amazing.

My dad sent me a picture of a bright red cardinal that he saw in his backyard today! It elevated my entire day.

In general, I'm noticing that I have a little more energy, I'm not as frustrated, and my commute is not as draining. And it's easier to roll with things at work. And people seem friendlier.

I've been dealing with some health issues lately which cause me to feel really tired and unable to do some of my normal errands. But today I had a lot of energy and I was able to run two errands after work, which were both really pleasant experiences.

This feels like the beginning of a wonderful new chapter!

(photo by me)

Monday, June 26, 2017

Gratitude List

I haven't written a blog post in a very long time! I feel inspired to write a list of what I'm grateful for.

I am grateful that I finally joined Spotify and it is awesome!
I am so grateful that I did a 30 minute Barre workout tonight!
I am grateful that I also joined My Fitness Pal so I can track my workouts and feel a sense of accomplishment!
I am so grateful for spending time with good friends, laughing so much and being so present in the moment, totally savoring and enjoying every moment!
I am so grateful for great music
I am so grateful for beautiful weather
I am so grateful for the beautiful colors in my apartment!

Thursday, May 23, 2013

Be the Change!

I took a quick trip to Target on a break at work yesterday. I was browsing around and noticed a journal with Gandhi’s famous quote “Be the change you want to see in the world.” I’ve heard this quote so many times over the years, but I was struck by the beautiful way it was presented on this journal cover.

I went back to work and started to think about the true meaning of that quote. I had the thought: Be the change you wish to see in YOUR world! If you want things to be different in your life, start to embody those states of being.

A little while later, my next client arrived. I loved her immediately! She was there for a teen facial, and I really enjoyed interacting with her. I noticed she had something written on her forearm. I read it…it was Gandi’s quote!! I know it’s such a well-known quote, but what are the chances that I’d see it on a journal cover at Target, and then a little while later, on a client’s forearm??

I was so excited and I told her about it. We laughed and later on, I noticed that she wrote it on my gratuity envelope!

This was such a delightful experience. I live for synchronicities like this! I am so inspired to contemplate the meaning of “be the change” on a personal and even global scale. 

Sunday, December 2, 2012

Leave a Trail

I’ve been noticing a trend with my clients lately: most of them, in fact the majority of them, don’t take my skin care advice! Many of them are using really harsh products and wondering why their skin is red! I explain why, and it seems like they don’t believe me. Maybe they have a built in skepticism of a salesperson trying to get them to buy lots of products, whether they need them or not. I genuinely want them to use products that will benefit their skin.

I had a lovely teen client recently. Her skin was really red, flaky, and she had lots of blackheads and pimples. She told me she was using a really harsh cleanser (I won’t badmouth any companies!!), as well as witch hazel and a really thick moisturizer. I explained why her skin looked the way it did and to my delight and surprise, she actually bought the kit I recommended. She came back a month later and her skin improved so much. Then she came back two months after that, and her skin was pretty much in the same condition as it was when I first saw her. She said she ran out of the products she bought and she went back to what she was using before!

I couldn’t believe it. I wondered why she would go back to using products that produced obvious and detrimental results, especially after seeing such wonderful results with the new products. And why do so many of my clients continue to use harmful products, even when I explain their negative effects?

I know that everything is a reflection of what’s going on within me, and I realized that I am doing something similar in my own life: I often go back to old ways of thinking, even though I know better! I have so much knowledge and I have seen powerful results when I use the tools I’ve learned over the years. I know all about the power of cultivating gratitude, looking for the positive aspects of a situation, and reframing something negative in order to see its benefits. I know all this and more, and I know how powerful it is, yet I still find myself stressing out about trivial things, worrying about the future, and feeling regret about the past.

It’s so easy to revert back to our old ways. If you think about it, our patterns of thinking have been there for so many years. It’s not always easy to start a new pattern. It takes time and focus. I love the way Abraham has simplified this concept: instead of trying to work out all the details, bring your attention to the emotion. For example, if you’re under a lot of stress, you might not have access to the solution right now. Instead, bring yourself into a general place of well-being. Think about the stability of the mountains, the rising and setting of the sun, the magnificence of your beating heart…all these things are profoundly in place, and they elicit a strong and steady feeling of true well-being.

I feel more and more inspired lately to really live what I believe in. I have gained tremendous insights over the years, and I feel compelled to really apply what I’ve learned.

I know, and I’ve experienced, that life circumstances change when you first change your emotions and your mindset; it’s the inner work that produces the outer results. Yet if you’ve been under a lot of stress for a long time, it might be difficult to shift into a state of ease and well-being. It takes practice and it won’t feel natural at first. It might feel like a new pair of shoes or like you just put on someone else’s jacket. But if you wear the shoes and the jacket for a while, you’ll notice that they start to feel like your own, until you reach the point where you can’t see yourself without them.

You can start with a gentle moment of peace or a few seconds of bliss. Practice these new emotions and start getting used to these new states of being! Keep practicing until they start to feel natural, and soon you won’t even remember you ever lived life any other way…

Be gentle with the process and keep going!

"Do not go where the path may lead,
go instead where there is no path and leave a trail."
--Ralph Waldo Emerson