About the Occult :: PODCAST

Presented by Pastor Steve Shields at Curwensville Alliance on 10/29/2017

On October 8, I preached a sermon about the different between contractual faith and covenantal faith.

Contractual faith is superstitious, ritualistic, controlling, and fear-based. Covenantal faith is loving, relational, peaceful, and trust-based.

Click the image above for that podcast.

A week or so later, Kelly, a woman in the congregation, sent me this message in response to that sermon. She graciously gave me permission to share it, in the hopes that others might find what she’s found.

Today I am so thankful for your sermon the other week on responses to fear and a mechanized religion. I have often prayed out of fear and my own anxieties and rituals that I could blow your mind with. For every bad situation life brought to me or a family member, I would add that to my daily sometimes quadruple daily prayer. It became so ritualistic that at times I think I really didn’t have any other communication with Jesus.

After that Sunday at church I really started, at age 38, to talk to Jesus like a friend. Like he was right there. I have felt so much peace over the past few weeks.

Then yesterday I get that call… Mom has fallen and has broken her shoulder. Immediately I get this awful feeling, an indescribable guilt… a voice saying, “Kelly you didn’t pray for the ‘no falls” thing you always pray. Mom fell because you didn’t say it out loud. You always say that prayer and for the past 2 weeks you didn’t and this is what happens….”

I almost gave into it. In fact I immediately prayed my prayer… the hurried “dear Jesus, please protect my family from automobile accidents, any kind of accidents, murderers, burglars, rapists, stalkers, kidnappers, gunmen, and shooters. Please keep us safe from all kinds of sickness, illnesses, falls, burns, fires and storms.” Also I would add any other new anxiety that came to mind that could harm me or my family!

So I start saying this prayer that I’ve prayed since age 14 or 15 and I get to the falls part and I heard another voice. Not the Kelly voice of a kid who lives in fear and anxiety…it was a mighty voice. A voice that I have probably blocked out all of these years and missed out on… a voice of a father who can, with one touch of a hand, calm you.

He said, “I already got all of that. I have you. I have your family. Talk to me.

What? So I did. In my car I let it all out again to my friend.

I cried. I wailed.

Then I laughed. I laughed at my sad little religion that I had made, when all of this time it’s so simple. God is for me. He is for my family. He has this. He isn’t going to prevent disasters from happening.

He IS.

And he will be there for when they do happen.

That first voice that Kelly heard was one she likely heard years ago from the enemy of her soul.

The podcast here speaks about who the enemy is, how he wants to damage us, and how we can stand against him. 
-Pastor Steve

 

Play

What Is It That You Are Looking For? :: PODCAST

Presented by Pastor Steve Shields at Curwensville Alliance Church

We’re looking for something more.

listening

There are examples in society. Consider the never-ending interest in religion. In spite of the fact that atheism has a voice to speak into culture like never before, people are still seeking spirituality. You’ve read reports – and I’ve been reading them for three decades now – that the church is dying. It’s not. It’s changing. Not dying. Mark Twain once wrote a note to a friend who’d heard he was sick. In actuality it was a cousin of Mark’s – A James Clemens, who was sick. Twain wrote to his worried friend: “The report of my illness grew out of his illness. The report of my death was an exaggeration.” The death of the North American church is a bit of an exaggeration as well. People are looking for something more.

In fact, people who’ve not experienced God are finding themselves drawn toward him and his people – toward the church. They are looking for something more. Many, who are not interested in Christianity, are fascinated by other religions. They’re attracted to Buddhism. Islam. Hinduism. They are looking for something more.

Another example is the interest in occult practices. Through the years, I’ve known people who practice Wicca – pagan witchcraft. They, too, are looking for something more. Wicca isn’t making it for them. I know Wicca isn’t making it for them because I have met them – looking for something more – in my church.

Another example is the consistent success of television shows about mediums. They keep coming back. And people keep watching. Why? People are looking for something more.

This podcast suggests what we are really looking for, and tells us how to find it.

Play

PODCAST: Can you really talk to dead people?

Presented 10/27/2013

In the past decade my collection of channels on my television have featured some ghost-hunting shows. They are entertaining and dramatic. They bear the name: Reality Television, but, as many have observed, there’s very little that is real on Reality Television.

450px-Pikes_peak_highway_big_footRight along beside these shows are shows with people chasing down Sasquatch. They carry the same enthusiasm, but not the same attraction.

Did you ever wonder why?

I would guess that part of the reason is because we hunger for the supernatural. And living in the twenty-first century, we are deprived in that area. Much of our society has missed out on experiencing God, so the hunger runs deep.

The question these ghost shows and shows with supposed mediums bring up is this: Is there such a thing as a ghost?

This podcast answers the question from a biblical position, and gives answers as to what one might actually be seeing, when one “sees a ghost”.

Play