Wednesday, October 18, 2017

What does persecution and the BTK serial murderer have in common?





Oct. 05, 2017 | China
Pray for Families Affected by the Closing of a Christian School




 http://www.icommittopray.com/request/1618/christian-school-students/








It was said of the horrible serial killer, who was known as BTK (Bind,Torture and Kill) that he was sub-human    Obviously this killer was guided by the devil to do awful, horrible things to men, women, and children. No one expected the normal looking man who worked for the city of Wichita, Kansas to be the monster that he really was. He was finally caught because he thought that he and the police had  an understanding. So they put an ad in the paper saying that they would not trace him, if he sent information by way of a CD. He did so, and he was trapped by his own ego.

China and many other countries  may look "good," if you see pictures of "normal life." . But the land which was evangelized  by the great Hudson Taylor has many true born again Christians who are bound, tortured and killed.
It was John Owen who said that Satan had two policies, one is his craftiness and is depicted as the serpent.  The other is a dragon and lion, which connotes his rage against the true believers in Christ, who are scattered across the nations, in every generation.
Your prayers are needed and even commanded. If you would like to learn how to communicate with these heroes, and or would like more specific prayer requests, please do a google search for Voice of Martyrs and then go to Prisoner Alert.




Please go to our website, heartfeltmin.org

Our son, Brant who went through horrible depression, after reading a biography of  a great soldier who was bound, tortured   and spared, said; "His torture  describes  what I felt when I was depressed."
If you would like a signed copy of our book, please contact us through our web site.  Thanks Steve Bloem

Monday, October 9, 2017

Do you ever think nobody cares for you?



 
Christ our Advocate, Intercessor and High Priest.
I  John 2:2 – 



 The Holy Spirit intercedes within us and Christ is interceding for us.  The Holy Spirit is within us, building us up in Christ, teaching us and guiding us and showing us what to do and what not to do.  And there the Lord Himself is making intercession for us and on our behalf, representing us always to the Father.  It is a glorious and sublime conception. Is there anything that can be more comforting and more consoling than to know at this very moment, and always, the Lord of Glory is concerned about you, is watching over you and is concerned about your interests and is there representing you?  We are frail and we are weak and we fall and fail, but we have an advocate with the Father.  Therefore, when you begin, at the suggestion of Satan, that you cannot turn back to God and face Him, remember, beloved friend, you are not alone.  I agree with you; I know the sensation but too well, the feeling that I have no right to approach God, but remember that you have an Advocate and He is there to represent you.
(David Martyn Lloyd Jones, Life in Christ, Studies in I John, Volume 2 (1993) by Elisabeth           Catherwood and Anne Desmond, Cambridge: Crossway Books, p.38, 39).





We have an advocate, says John with the Father. Now that word “with” is a most important little word; “with” means face to face with.  It does not mean that He now and again enters in and is allowed to represent us, but rather that He is always there. And it means that He is always, as it were, looking into the face of the Father.  We have a suggestion here of the great doctrine of the Trinity, the three persons yet one substance.  He is face to face with God, not having, as it were, to make an application to God to plead for us to the Father; He is always looking into the eyes of the Father.  What a wonderful idea, that the One who represents us is always there in there in that absolute intimacy with God. (Ibid 39).



 
 Are you struggling and don't know which way to turn. Please give us a call at Heartfelt Counseling Ministries,  Steve and Robyn make a great team and will travel to your place if  needed. If you would like to know more about what e can do for you.
heartfeltmin.org/what-we-do.html

Monday, October 2, 2017

How to fight mental illness in yourselves and others.


 1. Don't be ignorant! Be in the know about what mental illness is. Please stop with phrases like: "loon," "nut-house," "crazies," "fruits-cakes", "nut-case", etc. Realize that the rank and file of the media  (I am not talking about good documentaries) but those who often use these phrases in their movies, and TV shows hardly ever get it right. It is easy to pick on the mentally ill because of their troubles with mind and mood. This brokenness makes it hard 
for the mentally ill "people group" to defend themselves.           


 2. Start a CAMI mental illness support group.  We have written the material with all the information and help to start one and have a format for each lesson. We have groups in Byron Center, MI at Rush Creek Bible Church and at Boca Glades Baptist Church, Boca Raton, FL and one in a private home 
in Lake Worth. If you go to our contact us page and leave your name and number or your email, I would be glad to speak with you about having your own group. We will train you as we have others and we will support you if you have any questions or snags in your meeting that may be difficult for you to handle.We also offer online support groups using Skype or other VOIP.



          http://heartfeltmin.org/resources.html


3. Read our book, Broken Minds, Hope for Healing When You Feel Like You're Losing It. We will give you a signed copy for a donation of $10.00 or more, our shipping costs are  $3.00. For Kindle books please see: https://www.amazon.com/Broken-Minds-Healing-Youre-Losing/dp/0825421187/ref=tmm_pap_swatch_0?_encoding=UTF8&qid=&sr=




4Pray for the mentally ill and their caregivers. Pray that there would be medical discoveries which will help better treat these horrendous diseases.  If you have  a mental illness, keep praying. You may not feel like it and you may feel guilty and negative but if you know Christ, you can go through Him to the Father with boldness and confidence.      

I remember being so depressed with my concentration GONE, my hope almost lost and I was able only to pray from a prayer list. I kept the same prayer list and prayed through it every day. I could get some comfort from Scripture, but the Bible which I devoured daily up to that point was too difficult to read. So, I would write verses on a 3 X 5 card and try to meditate on one or two verses each day. God was with me, but I couldn't feel Him. Never doubt in the dark what you know to be true in the light.

Just take it one day at a time, or a moment at a time, depending on your level of depression. We must work together to dispel the confusion about diseases of the mind and mood. Robyn and I will speak to any group, any time, anywhere! If you want me to speak with your pastor, your family or your mentally ill loved one, I would be glad to do that. We are here to help.

Tuesday, September 26, 2017

My look at secular psychiatry



Copyright, "All rights reserved, 2017. My intention with this blog is to look at some of the basic underlying  assumptions that are part of a secular psychiatry, which includes bias against the supernatural, whether it be God or Satan. . 



 












My Presupposition

My assumption, is that the more a culture gets away from God, the  more persons in that country will practice witchcraft, and there will be more occurrences of demon possession.
But the flip side of this is a culture that does not honor Scripture will often deny the existence of demons or God. Demonic doctrine is organized and extensive. But the Spirit explicitly says that in later times some will fall away from the faith, paying attention to deceitful spirits and doctrines of demons (1 Timothy 4:1 ).  This anti-super naturalism was true in the Soviet Union before Glasnost. The authorities sent evangelical pastors to psychiatric hospitals and atheistic psychiatrists prescribed them medications that normally  are used for the treatment of bipolar disorder or schizophrenia. The Atheistic politico in  Soviet Union do not believe there is a God or anything that is supernatural. Therefore, they believed the pastors were insane and deluded and required psychiatric intervention.

I have also read and  pieced together, that this bias against the supernatural,  was practiced  by the mad doctors of the 18th century England. These psychiatrists actually petitioned the court to hospitalize, the despised Wesleyans  because they had ecstatic utterances and feelings.  Some of these evangelicals were put in the infamous Bedlam, which was actually Bethlehem Royal Hospital.

A Secular psychiatrist mocked me

When I was in a depressive state I  enlisted a well know psychiatrist in the Wilkes/Barre, Pennsylvania area to rid me of my depression.  This was in 1986. At that time some psychiatrists were calling the medicine used for depression as "poison". But I had researched the issue and knew that calling them poison was not reasonable.





















 One of the  psychiatrists from whom I sought treatment,  mocked me because I was an evangelical Christian. He said that John the Baptist suffered from psychosis and  depression.  I took the reference of psychosis to refer to a passage which involved John and Jesus at the baptism of Jesus; The text says:  

But Jesus answering said to him, permit it at this time ; for in this way it is fitting for us to fulfill all righteousness. Then he permitted Him. After being baptized, Jesus came up immediately from the water ; and behold, the heavens were opened, and he saw the Spirit of God descending as a dove and lighting on Him, and behold, a voice out of the heavens said, "This is My beloved Son, in whom I am well-pleased" (Matthew 18:15-17).
 Revelation is the act of God where He reveals to man that which he would not know.

This was no hallucination that John was experiencing.Those who do not understand the giving of the Spirit without measure conclude that John was not in his right mind.  However Jesus Christ had asked John to baptize Him  and was fully aware that the Holy Spirit of God was in a extraordinary manner given to Jesus.
 He also chided me saying, "I thought Christians were suppose to have the joy of the Lord and did not need medication." To be fair not all secular psychiatrists act in this way. when dealing with born again believers. But he did and I found him to be obnoxious and arrogant.

Often Christians will accuse those who have bipolar disorder or schizophrenia of being demon possessed; But there is a difference between them and some similarities. I would argue for a pastoral theology which is balanced and analytical. We must not be afraid to use diagnostic differentials to guide us in the area of targeting mental illness and/or demon possession.
A fascinating book on the subject can be seen at the address below.

http://www.amazon.com/Undertaker-Mind-Mad-Doctoring-Eighteenth-Century-Medicine/dp/0520231511.


Steve Bloem is an experienced clinical pastoral counselor. You can  get counseling  by Skype, by phone, or in person.  For more about counseling and support groups please go to the link. http://heartfeltmin.org/what-we-do.html

Co authors, Steve and Robyn Bloem
 One of the first Christian books on mental illness to talk
 about the medical model of mental illness.
A book  and a story.  

This book is on academic status with its 
publisher Kregel Publications
  http://www.amazon.com/Broken-Minds-Healing-Youre-Losing/dp/0825421187

 

Thursday, September 21, 2017

Young evangelical Christian is killed by Muslim teens beause he drank from the same cup that they did.




Hebrews13:3 Remember the prisoners, as though in prison with them, and those who are ill-treated,since you yourselves also are in the body.







 The Hebrew Christians at this point had been severely persecuted, which included losing their homes and being imprisoned. We see from Hebrews 13:2,3 that the pastor, missionary,Timothy had been imprisoned because of the gospel. The text says, "Take notice that our brother Timothy has been released, with whom, if he comes soon. I will see you." (NASB Hebrews 13:23)

The writer of Hebrews has already in chapter 11 spoke of men and women of old who suffered greatly.  He says in Hebrews 11:36, "and others  experienced mockings and scourgings,yes, also chains and imprisonment (NASB).  Another good example of mockings and scourgings and imprisonment can be found in the book of Jeremiah. Time does not permit an exposition of this book. If you read it on your own, be sure to include Lamentations, which is also written by Jeremiah.




Because of the Internet, today, we more than ever have opportunity to be obedient to the command of Hebrews 13:3. 




The first part of the  passage says,   "Remember the prisoners". We must not forget them but seek to find out who is suffering, why there are suffering ,and where they are suffering.  We should  realize that it is necessary to  pray for every aspect of their lives. 

Not only this, but according to Hebrews 13:3, our remembrance in prayer is fueled by a heartfelt empathy, remembering them as though we are in prison with them. We are to picture in our minds what this suffering involves. This will help create empathy. What would you do if you could not shower, if there was sewage flowing openly in the prison, or if you were tortured daily.?  How would you feel? You and I must realize that our persecuted,  fellow Christians,  belong to the body of Christ. We should rejoice with those who rejoice and weep with those who weep (Please see Romans 12:14-15). We should ask the Holy Spirit to help us care.

 Prayer Requests
 
The family of Sharoon Masih, murdered by his classmates, because he was a Christian. 

 
 A Christian teenager was beaten to death by classmates recently after being accused of drinking from the same glass as a Muslim. Sharoon Masih, 17, had begun classes at the exclusive MC Model Boys Government School Burewala in Punjab only three days before his murder. A Christian teenager was beaten to death by classmates recently after being accused of drinking from the same glass as a Muslim. Sharoon Masih, 17, had begun classes at the exclusive MC Model Boys Government School Burewala in Punjab only three days before his murder. He had been admitted to the school based on superior academic performance at his village school and was the only Christian in his class. A teacher in the room at the time of the attack said he didn’t notice the incident because he was reading a newspaper. Sharoon’s grandmother, who attends a church led by a VOM partner, said the family intends to ask the courts for justice. “Today is our son, tomorrow will be other sons and daughters,” she said. Pray for Sharoon’s family as they mourn their son’s death. Pray for all Christian children in Pakistan who face harassment at school and in their village.
For more prayer requests, please go to: https://www.icommittopray.com/

Monday, September 11, 2017

The Day that LIndsay and Emily Hope Died.























Happiness does not always last.

I was so happy when my wife Robyn and I had our second child,  Lindsay. She was somewhat fearful but also loved to laugh. She was a very law abiding citizen and never really hurt anyone. I remember taking her and her older brother to the movie Saving Private Ryan. I wanted to show them how our "forefathers" lived and died for our freedom. At one point Lindsay leaned over and said, "Now what war  this Dad?" She was never great at history. But she was a thankful young lady.Image result for marriage ring


























Marriage 

.Lindsay was married  July 10,2001.  It was a great ceremony and the Lord was glorified. She and her husband decided to name their baby, "Emily Hope." They like many parents felt that God would use their baby some day. The name meant to Robyn and me that a great future for their family would be filled with faith, hope and love. But we never expected that  in the near future, a day would end in great violence and could be likened to the "fog of war."



















 Helpful Scriptures On Suffering

It was beyond our human comprehension how God would make something good out of this tragedy. But we did know what the Bible said, "And we know that God causes all things to work together for good to those who love God, to those who are called according to His purpose. For those whom He foreknew, He also predestined to become conformed to the image of His Son, so that He would be the firstborn among many brethren" ( NASB, Romans 8:28-29).


He is the great God of Heaven and earth.

 The Psalmist said, "Not to us, O LORD, not to us, But to Your name give glory; because of Your loving kindness, because of Your truth.Why should the nations say, Where, now, is their God?" But our God is in the heavens; He does whatever  He pleases" NASB) (Psalm 115:1-3,).

















Two More on  September 11,2001  


On September 11, 2001, our nineteen year old Lindsay was excited to go to church and pray for our nation.  On the way home from church, she smiled and pulled ahead of us. A little after that she was hit on the driver's side of her car,  she and her baby,who was fully formed in her womb, died almost instantly. The man that hit her was shooting up heroin and was smoking crack.



She and Emily were like roses trampled on the ground by terrorists at home













 That night, when chief of the police said, "your daughter has passed;"I felt like  someone had stuck  his hand in my heart and pulled it out and threw it to the ground.In my opinion, there is no such thing as closure (except in Heaven). Today as every anniversary day of their deaths, her three brothers and Robyn and I still experience the loss of those we miss and lost.


Image result for angels in flaming fire

An Angelic Escort

I believe with all of my heart and mind that the moment Lindsay and Emily died, they had an angelic escort carry them to heaven.  Earlier in her life she had trusted the Lord Jesus Christ for salvation. We know though our sorrow is great, we have a hope of reunion. Remember that I said that Lindsay was fearful? She must have been amazed when  the angels who probably stood by the accident and worshiped the Lord  for all his ways and works, took her and Emily in his arms and carried them straight to heaven.


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Have you been confused about the losses in your life?
We are in the process of writing a book on the great losses of life.  We know the subject, we lived it. Please pray for us that we would do a good job of presenting Biblical grief!
We have already written a book that I had been slow in writing.  Losing Lindsay and Emily was a reminder to Robyn and me that our lives are like a vapor, a breath.



  Our book (Kregel Publications).
.Broken Minds Hope for Healing When You Feel Like You're Losing It" is dedicated to Lindsay and her baby Emily.

In this ground breaking book we tell our story about Robyn and I dealing with the mighty blows of major depression.  But it is also an explanation of what the church needs to know about depression, so they can  help the believers in Christ that are suffering this painful malady.




Don't let the copyright fool you.  We wrote this book with "staying power." It is just as relevant today as it  was  in  2005,If you would like to order this book you can find it in both book and digital formats. All you need to do is to go to:   
https://www.amazon.com/Broken-Minds-Healing-Youre-Losing-ebook/dp/B004EPYNLE/ref=tmm_kin_swatch_0?_encoding=UTF8&qid=&sr=

Tuesday, September 5, 2017

Is Mental Illness Universal?










Image result for forbidden



More understanding of medical science as it relates to the brain has filtered into our churches. But there remains a prevalent attitude among many leaders to “cordon off” mental illness. It is separated from other physical illnesses. Many of those who treat those with mental illness in the Christian community use their counseling experience and superficial biblical proof texting to justify their position. Usually they attribute mental illness to some spiritual or emotional defect in the ill person. Some Christian counselors, psychiatrists, and psychologists confuse the issue because they apply a faulty hermeneutic to Scripture .Some use anecdotal evidence to deny the universality of mental illness. They believe the whole idea of mental illness is American or Western or limited in some other way by culture. According to a report by the World Health Organization (WHO), which gathers health trends of all sorts around the globe.


http://allracestogether.org/wp-content/uploads/2016/10/346x200-People1-2.jpg






Image result for all races together



Mental disorders are not the exclusive preserve of any special group; they are universal. They are present in women and men at all stages of the life course. Mental and behavioral disorders are found in people of all regions, all countries, and all societies. They are present among the rich and among people living in urban and rural areas. The notion that mental disorders are problems of industrialized and relatively richer parts of the world is simply wrong. ( World Health Organization, The World Health Report 2001: Mental Health: New Understanding, New Hope (Geneva, Switzerland: World Health Organization, 2001), ch. 2, section 3.

From the preface of Broken Minds Hope for Healing
When You Feel Like You're Losing It. Grand Rapids: Kregel Publications,( page 277)..
https://www.amazon.com/dp/0825421187/?tag=mh0b-20&hvadid=78683808586410&hvqmt=b&hvbmt=bb&hvdev=c&ref=pd_sl_6aipoww3da_






For our website  heartfeltmin.org