Rescued from Satan’s Dominion

Today is feeling a bit surreal.

Up at 4am to get my pastor-husband, Ross, to the airport to attend the National Coalition of Ministries for Men in Little Rock, AR where he will formally receive his national award of NCMM’s “Pastor of the Year.”

Home by 5:30…spending some quiet time and doing my study for “If God is in Control, Why am I a Basket Case?”

The statement on page 58 jumps out at me:

Express your gratitude to God the Father and Jesus Christ for all they’ve done to rescue you from Satan’s dominion.

Hmmm.

Fitting indeed.

Today marks 3 years since God rescued me from the height of deception…believing a lie to be the truth for 12 long years and forsaking all to hold onto it.

Yep. Satan’s dominion, for sure.

1,095 days ago today I was numb, disillusioned, battered and bruised…wondering how I could have allowed myself to be duped, losing everything that mattered to me as a result. November 10, 2011 I packed my bags and called my son. “Aaron, it’s your mom. Where are you? I’m coming.” Words that I’d been convinced would mean I was turning my back on God. But in reality, they were words of freedom and deliverance.

I had lost my marriage; relationships will all my kids, my house, my car, and the company I co-founded. All as a result of believing a wolf in sheep’s clothing who knew just how to quote scripture out of context to control and manipulate those who had zeal without knowledge. A master at using shame, condemnation, and the fear of losing your salvation to get his followers to do nearly anything to please him…truth be told, it was all for his own selfish, evil gain.

But oh, how glorious is the grace of God. How He could take such destruction and use it for good is beyond me…but it is exactly what He has done.

Just last night I was talking to a friend who reminded me of our last visit together, over the Christmas and New Year’s holiday last year. I was so forlorn…so discouraged. Had I missed God altogether? Would He ever bring me a godly husband? I finally resigned myself to being single for the rest of my life and was determined to be content with that.

Who would have guessed that just a few weeks later God would be bringing me back to Washington, back into publishing, and back to The Summit…where He would provide the perfect husband for me…making me a pastor’s wife, no less! So much has been restored … relationships with my family, back in my old offices helping authors once again … it’s as my late momma used to say, “Mind-boggling!”

My memory verse from Colossians is from chapter 1 verses 13 & 14:

For He has rescued us from the dominion of darkness and brought us into the kingdom of the Son he loves, in whom we have redemption, the forgiveness of sins.

I am so grateful today for the way He has worked.

He has indeed rescued me, redeemed my life, forgiven me, and continues to make all things work together for good.

Yep. Faithful. That’s what He is.

13 thoughts on “Rescued from Satan’s Dominion

  1. I rejoice with you, Athena, for the way God has brought you “out of the pit and from the miry clay” of deception. And He’s given you a great husband to boot! He’s done the same for me too. Recently, I was asked to give my testimony to a church gathering and included that we had been in the Shepherding group and something about it and that it had triggered my writing the book, The Drift into Deception. Afterwards, several people said they had been in the same group, even the same church, and had gotten out. It’s a small world! God continue to bless you.
    Agnes

    • Thanks, sweet friend! Your book meant much more to me the 2nd time I read it…In fact, now that I think about it, the first time I read it I was still deceived, and I remember thinking… this sure sounds familiar!

  2. A great reflection on an important milestone and Scriptures behind it. Thanks for sharing this with us, Athena!

  3. Athena, Congrats! You got married! I emailed you last week, probably it was your old email address? Anyway, thanks for this blog post. I will pray for you as you start your new life with your husband and the good church you attend.

    God Bless,

    Colleen Simsa

  4. Athena, this sounds like your experience is similar to Job’s!

  5. Such an amazing and beautiful witness of God’s redeeming love. God’s Word from the book of Joel- ” God WILL redeem the years the locust ate away.” so rings true in your journey. Your testimony is brimming with God’s hope, grace and faithfulness!

  6. Yes…and amen! God is so good.

  7. I’m so happy for you, Athena. Blessings!

  8. God has certainly worked a miracle in your life, Athena. Watching your journey of restoration has been so encouraging. You have taught me that we are never out of His delivering reach.

  9. Encouraging Athena thank you! I can sense a freedom and the spirit of truth in your posts. Just tonight I was questioning things myself again and the Lord whispered to me Hebrews 10:35 “Therefore do not throw away your confidence, which has a great reward.”
    That’s neat your husband was in LR, we live there right now my son was born in Little Rock and we attended the Summit church from 2005-2008 before we moved around some with the army.

    • Thanks Kari…so good to see how God can get through to us, even when we are discouraged and hear the SD lies of the enemy in our head.
      Small world it is! If you ever get over this way, it would be awesome to connect in person.

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