Posted in Authentic Freedom, Being Human, God, Healing, Mary Magdalene, shame, Surrender

Those Demons in My Head

Today’s blog explores those stubborn, deep, elusive, hard to heal wounds and where we can go for healing and comfort. 

No Doubt!

Yesterday while driving my daughter to volleyball practice, a song popped up on my CD player that spoke loudly and clearly about one of my own elusive, stubborn, hard to heal wounds  And….I’m pretty sure I’m not alone.  The song was In My Head by No Doubt.  Here the Youtube link:  and a portion of the lyrics:

I try to think about rainbows
When it gets bad
You got to think about something
To keep from going mad
I try to think about big fat roses
When the ship starts going down
But my head is wicked jealous
Don’t want to talk about it right now

Long distance
Don’t talk about ex-girlfriends
Don’t talk about you with out me
Don’t talk about your past

In my head
It’s only in my head
In my head
It’s only in my head

To learn more about the seven core fears (demons) and how to heal them, read Authentic Freedom.  Buy it HERE!

Demons in Our Heads

When scripture tells us that Jesus healed Mary Magdalene of seven demons, Luke wasn’t talking about the dudes in red morph suits donning horns and carrying pitchforks.  He was also not talking about the demons that make our heads spin around and vomit pea soup.  Luke was talking about the perceptions and voices of fear that plague our human existence and keep us from living in the peace, love and joy that make up our original nature in Oneness with God.  These demons, I have found, vary in their strength and stubbornness.  Some we can heal simply by naming them.  Others take years or maybe even a lifetime to transcend.  Some, it seems, stay with us until we die.

To learn more about the seven core fears (demons) and how to heal them, read Authentic Freedom.  Buy it HERE!

Stubborn, Willful Demons

There are two demons in particular who have plagued me for as long as I can remember.  These two demons say, It’s my fault and There’s something wrong with me. I have worked really hard to find healing and release from these demons, but I find the healing elusive.  The worst part is that these demons work together, rarely alone, at torturing me and keeping me imprisoned behind a wall of shame.  And, these demons are really tricky because they come disguised as the virtue of Integrity.  As a person of integrity, I strive to say what I mean and mean what I say.  I also want to own my part in a challenge or struggle before confronting another party.  I want to be clean within myself before taking a challenge out into the playing field.  I work really hard not to blame others before examining the mirror of my own guilt.  See how tricky these demons are?  It is truly a good and virtuous person who owns their own stuff, who does their own work, who can accept their own responsibility.  True……to a point.  It is the demons job to make sure that I never escape from the cycle of self-examination, culpability and blame.  It was ultimately the work of these demons that kept me stuck in my childhood wounds, seven years too long in an unhealthy marriage and hesitant to hold the other person accountable for their part in the hurtful end of a relationship.  It must have been my fault because there must be something wrong with me.  BLECH!

To learn more about the seven core fears (demons) and how to heal them, read Authentic Freedom.  Buy it HERE!

If at First You Don’t Succeed

Try Try again!   Or when all else has fails, turn it over to God.  This is the point I have reached with these two demons.  I have tried and tried and tried to find healing of these fears.  I have employed every tool at my disposal, every weapon in my arsenal.  I have employed the Authentic Freedom principles, the Aramaic Lord’s Prayer, mantra, Tonglen, the Enneagram.  And still, these demons sing their evil songs in my head and perform their wicked dance, surrounding me in darkness like Rothbart, the evil swan demon of Black Swan fame.  Damn them!  Literally!  So last night while wrestling these demons in my head,  after trying and failing with rainbows and big fat roses,  I screamed out in defeat, “GOD TAKE THESE AWAY FROM ME!”  I’m done with these demons and done fighting and struggling with them.  Your turn God!  Of course God answered.  This morning, I opened up the scripture for today and here were God’s words to me:

The Lord is my shepherd, there is nothing I shall want.

In verdant pastures he gives me repose;

Beside restful waters he leads me, he refreshed my soul.

Even though I walk in the valley of darkness

I fear no evil, for you are at my side.

Psalm 23

There you have it.  Today, God has the final word.

Who are the elusive demons that you struggle with?

How have you sought healing from these voices of fear?

How are you invited to give it over to God?

Lauri Lumby

Authentic Freedom Ministries

Posted in About Lauri, Discernment

Shameless Self-Promotion Part III – Discernment of Spirits

Yesterday I began the discussion on charisms – the gifts of the Holy Spirit, the unique way in which Divine love, peace, contentment, mercy and joy are revealed through us for the sake of others.  Today I continue that discussion and share one of my unique gifts – discernment of spirits, and invite you to explore your own unique giftedness!

It is proving to be quite a challenge (as this is my fifth attempt) to write about and share with the reading public the charism of Discernment of Spirits.  It just doesn’t seem right to proclaim, “I have the charism of discernment of spirits,” especially since I know that this gift IS NOT MY OWN!  As I have observed this charism as it has revealed itself through me, I am acutely aware that this is GOD working….and is in no way, shape or form anything that I am humanly capable of.  When I witness the results of allowing this charism to flow through me, I am even more convinced of the amazing and wonderous nature of the Divine as it works in and through us.

But, what is the charism discernment of spirits?  Again, this is a difficult charism to describe or define.  Healing, teaching, prophecy, service, knowledge, understanding, wisdom….these are all pretty easy to comprehend.  But discernment of spirits by its very nature defies definition.  The best way I can describe it is to use the words given to me by my dear friend, spiritual sister and colleague, Karen Schmidt as she has observed this charism in me:  Discernment of Spirits is the ability to “hear the truth beyond the words,” or to “see the truth beyond what we see.”   I would add to this idea that discernment of spirits is the ability to know what is of God (love, wisdom, truth, compassion, mercy, joy, peace) and what is of the ego (fear, constriction, false perception, illusion, deceit, intimidation, power, ignorance).

Now that we know what it is, how does discernment of spirits work?  For me, this gift presented itself at a very early age (as early as I can remember, in fact).  For as long as I can remember,  I have been able to “read” people, rooms, spaces and situations.  “Reading” these people and places gave me the ability to determine if someone or something was safe and if someone or something was grounded in integrity, compassion and love or coming at me from a place of fear, deceit, intimidation.  The sensation of being able to “read” people and situations feels like having some sort of truth barometer that measures the levels of truth and alerts me through a deep sense of knowing whether something is of God or something else.  I valued this gift in its ability to “keep me safe”, and found it to be a challenge when I could immediately determine if a teacher (for example) was real or full of crap.  When Fr. Doyle proclaimed that he got to go to heaven before the rest of us simply by virtue of his ordination, I KNEW (without any theological training) that HE WAS FULL OF CRAP, and told him so.  I got a “C” for that display of “disrespect.”  (I later found out that based on Catholic teaching…I WAS right and he was WRONG!)

For the majority of my life, I took this gift for granted, not really paying it any mind except to determine the safety of a situation or a person.  It was through this gift that I was able to hear the truth beyond Jay’s words (my boss from AT&T in Minneapolis) that told me it was ok to move to Milwaukee when every fiber of my being resisted this move.  It was through this gift that I knew to change my worship site to the Newman Center and it was this gift that told me to pursue the Commissioned Lay Ministry Program and later, training as a Spiritual Director, and later yet, a Reiki practitioner.  Discernment of Spirits has been the gift that has guided me to this place in my journey and for this I am grateful.  But, it has been the revelation of this gift as something through which I could help others that has proven to me that this is more than just a gift and is actually a charism – a vehicle through which God facilitates healing and release in those with whom I share this gift.

As I embarked upon my ministry path and began to work with people both in groups and one-on-one, I discovered weird things happening.  I would be listening to students or clients say one thing, and know that they meant something else, or that there was something deep beneath their words that was trying to be revealed.  In one situation, what wanted to be revealed was the truth of emotional abuse.  In another was a profound grief that had yet been grieved.  In another was a profound fear of rejection that was coloring their entire life perception.  This discernment of spirits was revealing to me the truth beyond the words and the truth beyond what I could physically see.  Now, it would be really easy for me to say to a client when I hear these deeper truths, “I’m hearing that you are being emotionally abused,” or “Tell me more about this fear of rejection.”  BUT, I am not psychic and it does not serve my clients for me to tell them their journey.  So, over the years, I have learned how to receive this inner knowledge, this deeper truth and how to ask questions of the client that allows them to come to this knowledge on their own.  This is where the real miracle happens and when I know that God is doing the work.  There is a moment, when the client suddenly hears this deeper truth themselves and they light up with awareness, insight and wisdom and shed the tears of grief, or challenge their fear of rejection or stand up for their own needs and boundaries.  I know that I have not come to the knowledge of these truths on my own and when I get out of the way and allow the client to come to these awarenesses in their own time, true healing can take place.  AMAZING!

Where have you taken the opportunity to explore your own giftedness?

What gifts have already revealed themselves within you?

How might you further cultivate these gifts?

Lauri Lumby

Authentic Freedom Ministries/yourspiritualtruth