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Topics - musician_for_God

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General Discussion Forum / Have you ever had a numinous experience?
« on: Fri Jul 05, 2013 - 08:40:56 »
I found out what a "numinous experience" is after I had one, and then told my theologian friend, and he defined it with that term.  I have had others too, but they are rare.  I don't know, maybe I'm separating different intensities of the same thing: feeling God is with you. 
EDIT: The stronger intensities I have experienced are rare for me, whereas the milder ones are fairly common.

In the Bible, people fell on or hid their faces when they knew they were in the presence of Almighty God.  But other times in the Bible, the experience seems to have been less strong. 

So, I guess what I'm asking is, is there anyone else here who has had one of those nearly-overpowering experiences of being suddenly in the presence of God?  In my experience, there are a few things that seem to accompany this type of experience.  To describe the experience as a whole: I become immediately aware of my own tininess.  As a direct result of this feeling, I then feel as though I cannot speak.  This feeling is ALMOST as if I should not speak -- but not quite.  To better explain, at the same time as feeling forcefully (and I mean REALLY forcefully) humbled by His presence -- almost like being pushed down, but not in a physical sense -- I also feel His welcoming love, and His full willingness to hear my heart.  It's just that the presence of God is so great, so powerful, that it's as if He is filling all of the communication space Himself.

No physical sign has accompanied the numinous experiences I have had.  I just become immediately aware -- without knowing how -- that God is powerfully and undeniably there with me.  And the impression that makes on me cannot be overstated.  It is a special time in which faith is not required, for He is RIGHT THERE, PERIOD, and there simply is no denying it.  No lack of faith could blind anyone to the level of presentness I'm talking about.

His presence is incredibly warm and comforting, but it is also accompanied by a kind of fear, a strong sense of my own inadequacy--as if He Himself must prevent me, and does so, from falling to pieces from sheer awe of Him, and from the visceral sense of my own worthlessness.  And these experiences always bring silent tears.

EDIT: Another thing about these powerful experiences is that they generally come out of nowhere, not when I'm praying or during a momentous event, but rather, God intervenes in His own time.  He suddenly displaces all my other thoughts, and makes Himself known in my spirit.  I would describe my emotion as being similar to that in the passage Gen 28:16-17, which says, "And Jacob awaked out of his sleep, and he said, 'Surely the Lord is in this place; and I knew it not.' And he was afraid, and said, 'How dreadful is this place! this is none other but the house of God, and this is the gate of heaven.' "
My numinous experiences have those same thoughts and emotions minus the aspect of a specific place.

Has anyone else here experienced this overpowering presence of God?  Please share your experiences.

Television / An angel raises a man from the dead
« on: Wed Nov 28, 2012 - 14:16:14 »
Go to 34:10 in this clip:

Unsolved Mysteries: Ghosts (Episodes 27-34) (Last) Small | Large

Awesome.  It brings to mind both Heb 13:2 and Matt 10:8.

Sex in Marriage Discussions and Topics / Oral sex and closeness
« on: Mon Nov 26, 2012 - 10:04:52 »
This topic deals with the connection some couples find between oral sex and heightened emotional closeness.  I've recently re-discovered the joy of giving, so now it's a two-way street in my marriage, oral-wise.  We both feel it brings us a strong feeling of closeness, at least equal to intercourse. Feel free to share your views.

Of course, God's Word is the Bible, and, also, the Word (Logos) of God is Jesus.  But there seems to be another definition in the Bible.  Could that be the Truth of God?  As in, the actual Truth -- not in word, but in power -- of God?  What I'm saying is I think "God's Word" has a definition beyond "God's words".  There seems to be a "Word" which is both Power and Truth.  A Word that words merely reflect.  This would be how God spoke the universe into being -- not with merely "words" as we think of them, but with a Powerful Truth emanating directly from God's will.  Also, when Jesus healed the lame man, he said "Get up", which I believe was BOTH a command AND the healing power itself.  (Which gives me shivers, it's so awesome.)  He wasn't just telling the man to get up, He was also commanding and empowering his body to get up.  When Jesus said to the Father, "Thy word is truth", wasn't He saying more than God's law, the torah, is true?  I think of God's Word as the pure doctrine of God, in pure form, and above words of human language.

I have some clarity of thought on this, but also some confusion.  To clearly state my beliefs: I believe God's words are definitely holy and perfect, but that His Word is something that exceeds the human words He used to write the Bible.  His "Word", as mentioned in Scripture, is in the singular, as if not referring to Scripture's multiple words.

Theology Forum / Bigamy - forbidden by the NT, or not?
« on: Tue Oct 16, 2012 - 16:53:07 »
The title says it all.  I know Jacob had four wives, from whom were born the 12 sons who fathered the 12 tribes of Israel, and I don't remember a discouraging word written about this in the Old Testament.  Bigamy makes more sense to me than polygamy, but monogamy makes the most sense of all to me.  Still, I find the subject of bigamy interesting, since I do believe it is possible (not to say probable) to be practiced fairly to all 3 members.  Just wondering if it is expressly wrong in the New Testament.  I know the deacon is supposed to have one wife.

Christian Marriage Forum / The beauty of wifely submission
« on: Tue May 08, 2012 - 09:26:01 »
I work full-time, and my wife does not work.  We both like it that way.  We have no kids.  So, the stress from each weekday is always one-sided: it's all on my shoulders, and it's a very heavy burden. Whereas, she gets the luxury of not having to venture out into the world each day, but rather gets to live in the safety, security, and comfort of our home.  She has to cook, clean, and take the dog out -- that's about it.  (And by cook and clean, I don't mean to tiring degrees.)

Well, the Lord has shown me something about marriage, and what's interesting is that He has shown it to me through giving her the desire to submit herself more fully to me, her loving husband.

Society has been re-shaped by feminism over the past few decades, and my views as a member of society have been thus shaped by feminism without my knowing it.  We live in a culture where it's considered perfectly acceptable that the husband's job is to make the money, and the wife's job is to spend it on herself.  But there is a 40-hour-per-week sacrifice on the part of full-time employed husbands such as myself.  I come home completely stressed-out, utterly drained.  The Lord has shown me recently, through planting submissive desires in my wife, that He wants to use her to fully "unstress" me from the moment I walk in the door, from a hard day earning a living for the two of us.

Our feministic society had trained me to think she owes me little when I walk through the door having worked all day, and temporarily wishing I were dead because of all the stress I'm feeling.  But the Lord has shown me otherwise.  Feminism has produced such perversity of thought, often undetected, such as the following: My wife was sitting on the floor at my feet while we were watching TV, I was stroking her hair from above, and she was basking in the feeling of submission -- when I had the errant thought, produced by feministic societal conditioning, that this situation was, somehow, me being elevated beyond what I should be.  But that is wrong!

I've been so conditioned by society, that it took God working within my wife's heart for me to understand and learn to accept the personal benefits of my role as loving, providing husband.  This is how I had been conditioned by society to behave: walk in the door from work each day with maximum, wish-I-were-dead stress, and instantly ask MY WIFE what I can do for HER!  Going the extra mile, it was for sure!  But it's hardly fair!  Or sustainable. A person has limits to how much stress they can endure before they crack.  And her job as my wife is to be a helpmate to me, to make sure I stay healthy in mind and body, so that I can continue to work and provide for the two of us.

There is nothing most feminists hate more than a traditional marriage.  And yet, God has shown me that His design of marriage works the best -- BY FAR! I feel so totally fulfilled and refreshed from her attending to my every request yesterday evening.  And she feels fulfilled doing it!


Yet, there are wives who willingly add stress to their providing husbands' lives!  Genesis 2:18 clearly shows that these women are not good wives.  I've been married to such a woman, so I well know the "millstone around my neck" feeling to which I refer.

It is better to dwell in a corner of the housetop, than with a brawling woman in a wide house.
Prov 21:9

Many customs and laws in the Old Testament naturally seem so foreign to most people in the 21st century, myself included.  I trust God, and I trust in His goodness, His love, and His justness.  Therefore, out of trust, I do not believe that anything He did -- no matter how severe -- was wrong.  But I would like to get better educated about what it was like to actually be someone living in Old Testament times, in order that I could be able to better explain to others how "the God of the Old Testament" was good and loving, even though, in many unbelievers' misinformed opinions expressed to me, the Old Testament does not characterize Him as loving at all.  He gets a lot of accusations these days of having been heartless, but I KNOW that is not the truth.  His ways are beyond our ways, and that will be true even after I learn all that I can.  But I definitely wish to learn all that I can.  I would LOVE to read the daily diary of a typical Jewish person living in that time, under Mosaic law.  That doesn't exist, so I would love to maybe read an educated guess put together by biblical historians, explaining what a typical day -- from dawn to dusk -- would be like for a person living in those times, from their perspective.

Those life conditions are something SO different from anything I am used to in modern-day America, that I have difficulty really imagining the human historical environment in which God chose to deal with ancient Israel.  Does anyone know what it is I'm looking for, in real terms?  Are there any first-person re-creations, even in book form, which I could use to virtually step into the shoes of an ancient Israelite, and view God and life through their eyes?  I admit I don't know where to look for such knowledge, and that is why I am posting this thread.

Theology Forum / Trusting in God; trusting in money
« on: Fri Mar 30, 2012 - 16:16:19 »
This puts the whole idea of having a savings account I contribute to regularly (at significant personal sacrifice, because I worry generally about the future) into a whole new light for me:

Matt 6:24-34

Do Not Worry
    24 "No one can serve two masters. Either you will hate the one and love the other, or you will be devoted to the one and despise the other. You cannot serve both God and money.
    25 Therefore I tell you, do not worry about your life, what you will eat or drink; or about your body, what you will wear. Is not life more than food, and the body more than clothes? 26 Look at the birds of the air; they do not sow or reap or store away in barns, and yet your heavenly Father feeds them. Are you not much more valuable than they? 27 Can any one of you by worrying add a single hour to your life[e]?
   28 “And why do you worry about clothes? See how the flowers of the field grow. They do not labor or spin. 29 Yet I tell you that not even Solomon in all his splendor was dressed like one of these. 30 If that is how God clothes the grass of the field, which is here today and tomorrow is thrown into the fire, will he not much more clothe you—you of little faith? 31 So do not worry, saying, ‘What shall we eat?’ or ‘What shall we drink?’ or ‘What shall we wear?’ 32 For the pagans run after all these things, and your heavenly Father knows that you need them. 33 But seek first his kingdom and his righteousness, and all these things will be given to you as well. 34 Therefore do not worry about tomorrow, for tomorrow will worry about itself. Each day has enough trouble of its own."

So, obviously, I should save my money just as hard and fast as possible, for the future, right?  (Sarcasm)  That's what I've been doing, but it's totally wrong!  Yes, I've read this passage many times before, but it's funny how certain Scriptures fade from our daily mindsets over time.

I'm guessing not, so please don't think I'll be offended if you want me to go away.  I will cease this thread if asked to.

Christian BDSM.  I'm guessing most of you are thinking:  ::frown::

It's something my wife really wanted me to try, in sort of being more old-fashioned in my role as husband.  As in, "Husband is master, wife is subordinate".  I have to say I don't see anything unChristian about that -- really, it's the feminist movement and its current fallout in married homes that is unChristian.  But the RESPONSE I have gotten from my wife, both emotionally and -- as follows emotional connection -- sexually, is just amazing! She is suddenly hanging-on-the-edge-of-her-seat-with-wide-eyes interested in me now, as if we just met!  (We've been together for four years.)  She likes being given orders, both domestic and sexual.  Again, though I may be envied by other men for this, it isn't wrong / unChristian in my opinion.  But it IS extremely rejuvenating our relationship.  There is a lot of sudden clarity that occurs when spouses commit to clearly-defined roles: leader, follower.  And that -- not to repeat myself too much -- is biblically advocated.  We are going about this new experience in a very God-focused and Christian-thinking way.  I tell her Christ is her TRUE master, while I am her master secondarily. She says thinking of me that way makes her feel much, much closer to me, and more loving toward me as well. And it really shows!

And if any of you are thinking this isn't love, you're so, so wrong.  Lovingly is exactly the way we practice this, and it is love that has exploded anew after trying this.  There are some Christians who believe in BDSM, but for reasons I myself well understand, they are very few in number.  I was very dubious about it for years myself.  But I think a certain way of doing it can be righteous.  And, yes, there are also a lot of horribly unChristian ways to practice BDSM that one must strictly avoid -- after all, God is watching, and we need to respect and know that at all times, in our proper subservience to Him.

Theology Forum / Discussion of Jesus' sayings being banned on the web
« on: Tue Mar 27, 2012 - 13:18:07 »
I just had a discussion thread I started on another website deleted because I mentioned that Jesus was not wholly-inoffensive -- and that, maybe Christians who believe it is in every case wrong to offend should take another look at their Lord, and at His words in the four Gospels, such as when he confronted the Pharisees, or overturned the tables and threw out those who sold the doves in the temple.  The thread was not just locked, so that it could be read but discussion halted, but it was completely obliterated, and it was told to me in a personal message that I broke the forum rules.  This was an a discussion area called "Politics, Philosophy, and Religion".

Just another example of those who wish to "suppress the truth". (Romans 1:18)  I guess putting a philosophical challenge to others who belong to my faith is crossing the line nowadays.  No doubt many wept bitterly at the thought of using of their spiritual minds.  (Ok, NOW I'm being a little rude, I admit, so I'll stop here.)

Just wanted to express my support for those of our brethren who have also been chastised for, or utterly stopped from, making honest and well-meaning religious points in appropriate venues.

Working out towards "bulking up".  Seriously!  Sure, the workout is not necessarily a fun thing in itself, BUT, you get to still increase your body's health and keep fat away, WHILE eating more normal amounts and kinds of food than you have to when dieting.
On a whim, I took to heart a suggestion from an acquaintance of mine, and recently switched from dieting and losing weight to weight training.

That was two weeks ago.  But only today did I finally do enough research on the subject to realize something very pleasing indeed: While weight training, I get to eat much more normal and good-tasting food, and a more normal quantity of it -- and I still won't gain any significant fat, but WILL gain muscle.   ::clappingoverhead::

It's an increasingly common question for those who want to get in shape: "slim down", or "bulk up"?  Both are very healthy.  Of course, there's also a third option: regular/cardio-style fitness workouts while dieting.  But I've tried that too, and I much prefer being able to eat normally and building muscle.  That may be because I'm a guy; I can see why women wouldn't necessarily want to build muscle.

But whoever does decide to go the bulking-up route to fitness has the most enjoyable diet of all three routes:  you get high calories, high protein -- even high fat!  That last part really amazed me: I found out I am REQUIRED to eat more fat than I'm currently eating, because a good amount of fat is actually necessary for building muscle.  So, I got my Chipotle burrito with guacamole today.  ::smile::

I probably have another 10 pounds or so of body fat I'd like to eliminate in the future, but that can wait until I bulk up some.  The goals of losing fat and of gaining muscle require two different diets, if you want to make significant progress in those areas.  So, my opinion is that it's best to concentrate on just one of those goals at a time, and change your diet accordingly.

But ya, if you need a break from your oppressive diet, building muscle is a guilt-free way to start eating a good deal more the way you feel like eating.

Theology Forum / How we ought to pray
« on: Wed Dec 21, 2011 - 12:10:34 »
I've struggled with this issue for quite a while -- and most of the time I didn't even know I was!  Correct attitude during prayer is extremely important.  One might even argue from Scripture that God hears our attitudes more than the words we are actually using, while of course He hears and listens to both.  

I had a weird problem for years: humility felt, just sort of "semi-present" when I prayed -- as if the flame on the candle of pride didn't quite want to wink out altogether, even when I was addressing the Most High God!  I got into major mental struggles to try and purge-out pride in real time during prayer, but of course pride isn't in the mind, it's in the heart.  It is so hard to grow to the point where we pray to God "face down in worship", metaphorically.  In other words, in a way in which our attitudes could be accurately described as prideless, at least during the prayer itself.  (I mean, who has truly mastered round-the-clock humility??)  But humility is so necessary -- not just during the prayer but especially then -- if we expect our prayers to be heard and answered.

So many times, it was like I was laying out for God what I thought He should do for me -- even though that's not how I meant to sound!  I mean, it's just a unique frame of mind that one needs to have when one is addressing The All-Knowing One.  He knows everything, so it's REALLY hard not to accidentally insult His intelligence by slipping into "explaining things" to God in the course of a prayer -- because that's just what we're used to doing when we're talking to people.

I was at a church service about ten years ago in which a prayer meeting was taking place, and people were taking turns praying over a fellow member's illness.  One woman, when it was her turn, began to inform God of what a good man this member was, and went into some detail ("He's......, Lord.  And he's really......., Lord," educating God as she went).  Her tone was pushy, whether or not it was intended to be.  But I didn't hear respect or humility -- just urging.  She may simply have been focusing on her love for the ill man, and accidentally went over-the-top in trying to push God to act.  Of course, God saw her heart, and would consider its state over a truly-accidental tone.  But I found it important for me to make sure that any pushiness in my prayers wasn't from the heart.

From Scripture, I think God hears and answers the "face-down" prayers the most (speaking in terms of attitude, not necessarily actual bodily position).  Jesus spoke of that type of humble prayer in the parable about the two men who prayed differently to God. (Luke 18:10-14)  Greatly fearing pride, as the begetting mother of all sins, I've asked God to bring whatever pain into my life that is required to keep me humble.  Pride that takes hold can rot a person from the inside out.

Television / Paranormal shows
« on: Thu Dec 15, 2011 - 12:04:20 »
I like watching haunting investigation shows like "Ghost Adventures", "My Ghost Story", "Celebrity Ghost Stories", "A Haunting", and "The Haunted".  All of those are reality shows; I'm not into fiction when it comes to this subject.

As the Bible says, I believe all "ghosts" are demons, and I watch these shows to learn about unwanted encounters -- home invasions of the spirit kind.  After all, it can happen to anyone, so I prefer to work toward, as Jesus put it, being "wise as a serpent" on this subject as I work toward becoming on most others.

I used to be scared to watch such shows, but I find the more I trust in God, and the more I learn, the more prepared I feel if myself or a friend ever experiences direct, physically-manifested spiritual warfare.  Some of the accounts on all of the shows I mentioned, I find dubious.  About 20-30% of them.  The others really do seem credible to me.  I've had comparatively-small things happen in my home and my body, have commanded the demons away, and they leave.  In reality, permanent freedom from them does not exist in this world, whether it's in regard to moral temptations, or direct physical attacks like illness, or what have you -- but rather we Christians are called to repeatedly and ongoingly war against the forces of darkness through God's strength.  And we always have the victory in every battle when we stay strong and call on Him.

A warning: Don't even start watching these shows if you are not prepared for anything demonic to happen in your home.  Who would wish that?  Not I!  What I'm trying to say -- and say with clarity -- is that sometimes even watching or reading such material on demons can rouse them to test you, to see if you're a strong person in Christ that they want to stay away from, or if you're a person ready to give in to fear.  To the extent some of you may be the latter, please watch or read as little about demons as possible.  Wisdom is always good, but only to the point we can manage and take responsibility for the consequences of the incoming wisdom.  As Solomon said, greater wisdom means greater sadness (but also greater preparedness).

I should also say here that dealing directly with demons when you don't have to in order to help free yourself or someone else from their influence is biblically wrong, to say nothing of its foolish riskiness, and I do not endorse what the "Ghost Adventures" crew does in deliberately entering haunted locations for a thrill -- which is why they do it -- rather than to cast/exorcise them out, which is the proper reason.  The other shows, however, deal mostly with people who were simply blindsided by demons against their own will, and are simply telling those personal stories in their own words.  The more we know, the better we can combat these dark forces "through Christ who strengthens" us.

I'm just under 5' 7", and I was up to 203 lbs a few months ago.  Thank the Lord, I'm at 171 today!  And on my way to 145 or so.  I'm just counting my daily calories and fat, and doing a little walking once a week.  I can't push too hard, because I've gotten very sick, multiple times, by trying to do too much weight loss too fast.  (That seems to make my immune system completely crash, and then I get a cold or flu for 2 entire months!) So, I am praying for patience, as a slow rate of losing weight (about 1 pound per week) is the only way I can do it and stay healthy.  My wife is normal weight, and I intend to match her.  She's gorgeous, and I'm not -- but I can at least lose my extra weight for her.  (I made the decision totally on my own -- she is very accepting of whatever weight I've been at.)

(just now added the last picture)

As most unknown music writers do, I've been comtemplating ways to move forward with my music, i.e. where I should go after the writing step is all done.  I've been praying about it over the last several years, and, aside from some amateur piecemeal recordings and my website (see my profile), I haven't really come up with any ideas.  Everyone associated with new music knows the road is hard for unknowns like myself, and that there is no one single way to proceed, which fits every new music writer.

I joined this forum just the other day, actually in order to address some marital issues my wife has been having.  And today, I thought I might introduce myself in this capacity of the forum as well.  I write opera, technically, but with significantly modern touches because even I know how boring classic/conventional opera can be.  I've written two, so far, and they are both heavily Christian in their message and story (they share the same plot and characters).

So anyway, I just basically wanted to say "Hi", and introduce both myself and the unusual ministry to which I have been called.  Maybe there's someone here who would be interested in collaborating in some way?

I initially encouraged my wife to join this forum and get out her feelings in a Christian setting.  At first she was interested, but when I read Jesus' sayings on divorce, she became uninterested in asking other Christians for help.  She is new to the faith, and is growing in Christ, but slowly.

Anyway, our situation is this: We get along great together, we're not rich but we're able to pay all our bills on time and have a little left over for fun, we both feel we go together like two peas in a pod.  Basically, her problem is of the "something's missing" variety.  I should mention that I am 31 and she is 22.  We've been married two-and-a-half years.  She has never lived alone -- never been "out in the world" (meaning living alone).  She lived with her mom and dad all her life before I came along, and then she and I married, and she moved into my place, which is a four-hour drive from her hometown.

I mentioned our different ages to illustrate that I have a lot of "living all by myself" experience, whereas she has none.  I know "what's out there" in the big wide world a lot better than she does because of my extra years and the experience they afforded me.  We both agree that there are no obvious problems we can point to in our marriage.  And, for my part, I am fully satisfied with her.  But sometimes her mind wanders outside of being married to me, and she wonders what it would be like to be a fully-independent, single woman, who's spending most of her time trying to find someone better than me.  In other words, in my opinion, she's letting Wants cloud her realization that she has everything she Needs -- and that if she leaves a good husband, there's not necessarily another good husband around the corner.  (From what I've heard, I think single women will definitely back me up on that one.)

That considers the "practicals", so to speak, and not the theological.  As far as the theological, of course I've made it very plain to her that walking away from a marriage in an almost casual pursuit of greater worldly happiness is about as far from the Bible and Christianity as one can get!  And I've made it clear that taking such action will not leave her satisfied, or magically bring her greater happiness.  Jesus' statement about the two spouses becoming one flesh illustrates, to be, that a divorce is as traumatic an unnatural as tearing a human body (the "one flesh" that they have become) in two!

As I said, she is not feeling up to actually typing right now, but I'm sure she would be interested in what people on here have to say, as far as helping her illuminate why she could be feeling this way, and what the best solutions are.  She had just recently begun reading "The Power of a Praying Wife", a book her mom gave her, and that really seemed to be helping.  But now, here we are again.

When we're out in public, say a nice restaurant, my wife looks around at all the people, and imagines that all of them are having more fun than she is, and that all of them have more fulfilled lives than she does.  This depresses her, often profoundly.  But when we're at home, she doesn't feel this, or certainly nowhere near as much.  She's suffering badly from "the grass is greener on the other side of the fence" syndrome, and she admits it.  She just can't see clearly, but she wants to.

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