THE DECEITFULNESS OF SIN


                                 Phil Scovell

                           Copyright (C) 2003/2007

                             All rights Reserved

                       CHAPTER 12  MY DAUGHTER IS GONE

          The first time  our daughter ran away,  she was only 13  years of
     age.  Fortunately we found her within about four hours but  those four
     hours  were  emotionally  like  nothing   my  wife  and  I  have  ever
     experienced.   Furthermore,  the pain  of  this event  was firmly  and
     sharply and painfully embedded in my memory.

          As the years  passed, my daughter ran  away two more times.   She
     had a child when she was 16 years old.  Later, when she did marry, she
     had a  second child.   Due  to her  life style  of cigarette  and dope
     smoking, drinking alcohol,  taking drugs, living immorally,  having an
     abortion,  and criminal activities,  which eventually resulted  in her
     felony arrest, my  wife and I obtain  guardianship of her oldest  son.
     The youngest son was still under the custody of his real father.

          Over the years, and more than once, I had to ask her to leave our
     home, no longer  to live with us, because light and darkness simply do
     not dwell together without conflict.

          When my daughter was 24 years of age, she began  living immorally
     and  moving in with different  friends and using  more and more drugs.
     She and her  husband separated and her  life style grew worse  and she
     drifted further away from the Lord and her family.

          One summer, on the 4th of July, she told us  that she would be at
     our home  to spend that evening  with her boys.   She did not  call or
     show up that night.   We tried calling her  at the last two  telephone
     numbers we had  for her  but no  one new where  our daughter  was.   I
     became angry.  After you have been lied to by the same person for many
     years,  you  would   think  that  you  would   become  acclimated  and
     invulnerable to any emotional effects.  When, however, it comes to the
     well   being  of  your  own   flesh  and  blood,   that  is,  our  own
     grandchildren, emotions easily  surface.  In this case, and for me, it
     was anger.

          My anger was strong enough to keep me awake that night  till well
     after midnight.    At first  I  considered my  anger  to be  perfectly
     natural and  justified, under  the circumstances,  and  perhaps I  was
     correct.   After all, my  grandchildren were once again  being cheated
     out of not  having their  mother with them  for the  night.  As  their
     grandfather,  I was simply  right down  mad they  were being  left out

          As my mind  focused on many other such similar things my daughter
     had done  over the  years, old emotions  began to  surface.   I easily
     remembered the most painful  event; the first time she ran  away.  Let
     me describe that night briefly so you will have a better understanding
     of what I am about to explain.

          One  evening, I was working  in my office, a room  on the side of
     our  home, when  I  heard a  car  door and  a  vehicle pull  away.   I
     immediately felt in  my spirit that  something was wrong.   I left  my
     office and went  through the house calling  for my kids.  My  two boys
     came but Gretchen  was no  where to  be found.   My boys  and I  began
     searching her  room and  soon found  her  note.   "Dad and  Mom, I  am
     leaving because I want to live  with others.  Don't worry.  I  will be
     fine.   The  woman I  am  living with  doesn't  even smoke.    Signed:
     Gretchen."  After finding her hand written note telling us she had run
     away, we began calling all of her friends.  During the times we waited
     for something to  happen and calls to be  returned, I would go  out to
     the front  yard  and sit  on  a cement  flower box  and  pray that  my
     daughter would  come back.  Yes, I  cried.  Yes, I was  angry.  Yes, I
     was horribly afraid.   I kept straining my ears to hear  a car driving
     up  into our gravel driveway  or the footsteps  of my daughter walking
     across the  gravel coming  home but  they never  came.   All sorts  of
     dreadful thoughts flooded  my mind, as one might imagine.   "Would she
     be hurt or killed?   Would she ever come back; would we ever hear from
     her again?   What if  she were kidnapped?   What  if she were  raped?"
     Under the circumstances, our concerns were certainly not abnormal.

          When we found  her, she and her girl friend had run away together
     and were staying with two 28 year old  men.  One of them had just been
     released  from prison.   As I said,  this was one  of the most painful
     events I ever had with our daughter but it would be far from the last.

          On the night  of the  4th of  July, as I  mentioned, this  memory
     event came to  mind.  Gretchen not being home that night triggered the
     earlier memory and  I recall saying  to myself,  "I will never  forget
     that night as long as I live."  Why?   Because I experienced such deep
     pain and sorrow  and such real genuine fear  for my daughter's safety.
     After all, I was her father and I was reacting naturally  and normally
     as any father might.

          Suddenly, I  realized this would  be a good opportunity  for some
     healing.  Why?  Because the pain  of that initial event was still very
     real and very  deep.  I prayed silently  and said, "Lord, what  is the
     source of this pain in this event?"  The Lord began showing me how, as
     I sat in the front yard waiting for my 13 year old daughter to return,
     fear began to  take over and I was bombarded with multiple concepts of
     fear.  Many of those ideas I  have already mentioned.  I could clearly
     see a  sad father out in that  front yard, sitting on the  edge of the
     cement flower box, waiting for his lost run away daughter.  I felt the
     sadness and the fear  and worry and the total helplessness building in
     the  man I saw in that memory.  I  asked the Lord to point out all the
     lies the were going into my thoughts at that time and He did.  Seizing
     them all, I gave them to the Lord.   I still felt deep pain and sorrow
     in the event however.

          I asked  the Lord, "Lord Jesus, did I  miss something?  Was there
     something demonic in that  event?"  I didn't see anything  as I prayed
     but the  second I  asked this  question of  the Lord,  a demonic  form
     appeared standing  near me  in the memory.   He  was, at  that moment,
     about  four feet tall.   He was dark  and had the  shape, for the most
     part, of  a human with a  head, arms, and  legs.  Otherwise, I  saw no
     other physical details.  As  the Lord Jesus continued pulling out  the
     lies  and naming  them for me  so I  would know what  they were, fear,
     doubt, worry, concern, helplessness, loss, loneliness, death, physical
     harm and so on, the demon grew smaller  in size.  In fact, he began to
     shrink rapidly.   When it seemed  the Lord was  done pulling the  lies
     from my  thinking at that  time of the  memory, the demon  had changed
     form.  He was  now about the size of your little  finger and he looked
     exactly like  a large black  ant.   He was standing  on the  ground in
     front of me and as I watched,  he slowly turned and began walking away
     from me and down the street.  He  did not crawl along the ground as an
     ant  but was standing upright and walking  on his back legs.  He would
     stop occasionally and look back.  I noticed he had a look  on his face
     that was trying to express something but at first I couldn't determine
     its meaning.   He stopped  and turned back a  couple of times  in this
     same manner  and then  I  recognized the  look on  his face.   He  was
     saying, "Do I really  have to go?"  I almost laughed out  loud.  I did
     speak out loud when I addressed him.  "Yes, I" said, "you have to go."
     He turned  and kept walking  away, growing smaller and  smaller in the
     distance, as he walked down the street and he never looked back again.
     As he  walked away with his back  to me, I added, "And  don't you ever
     come back  either, in the name  of the True Lord Jesus  Christ."  This
     entire time in prayer lasted about one minute from beginning to end.

          When  the memory  faded in my  thoughts, I  noticed my  anger was
     ebbing  away as well.   I  focused on the  memory once again  and felt
     around emotionally to  see if there was  any more pain but  I couldn't
     find any of  the pain still in  the memory.  Now,  several days later,
     the memory, even  when I go to  it, doesn't hurt and there  is no deep
     pain or sorrow.  In fact, what I really feel now, when  I focus on the
     memory, is peace and freedom.


          I want to point out several different aspects of this true story.

          1.   It should  be clearly seen  in this true  story that events,
     over which we may have no control, allow demons  to gain a foothold in
     a  Christian's life.  I had done nothing wrong nor had I committed any
     sin.  Yet,  due to the fear  generated by the circumstances,  that is,
     the unknown of my daughter's whereabouts, I unknowingly and innocently
     gave  place  to  the  devil  in  my  thoughts  and  he  exploited  the
     opportunity by amplifying my natural fears and concerns.

          2.   This  story demonstrates  the  healing  power of  God.    My
     daughter was 24 years of age at the  time I focused on the 11 year old
     memory.   Yet, I even said to myself, "I  will never forget how I felt
     that night she ran away for  the first time."  Not only could  I never
     forget it but the  truth was, my sorrow and fear was  buried deep.  It
     was so deep, I never knew it was there.  Why?  I  had been deceived by
     the devil in agreeing with  his words instead of  God's.  Thus, I  had
     given the  devil a  legal right to  continue trying  to operate  in my

          As I  was reliving,  as it were,  that memory,  I asked  the Lord
     Jesus to show me His truth about this event in my life.  He first told
     me that He was there with me as I sat on the cement flower box waiting
     for my daughter so I  wasn't alone even if I felt otherwise.   I asked
     Him  to show me more about why I hurt  so much and so deeply.  He then
     revealed a  number of demonic lies implanted in  my mind.  I asked the
     Lord Jesus to identify those lies and  to speak His truth to me  about
     them.  That was when He began removing them one  by one.  It literally
     appeared to me as if the Lord  were pulling foot long sharp thorns out
     of my back as I sat patiently waiting.  He did it so rapidly, I cannot
     even identify everything He removed from me  that night but I felt the
     relief when He was done.

          3.  Anger masked the lies in this memory.  The anger kept me from
     seeing the true nature of the memory itself.  Once I asked the Lord to
     take me beyond the anger and to the true nature of the pain, the anger
     no longer was  able to  hide my  deepest of feelings.   In  conducting
     intercessory  prayer sessions with others, I  almost always find anger
     masking  the pain.   Usually, just below  the anger, is  fear, or some
     other emotion, and below the fear  is the pain.  As long as  the anger
     and  fear  are  still  there,   the  devil  has  license  to  continue
     manipulating  our  emotions  through  tossing more  fiery  darts  of a
     similar nature into our thoughts and feelings.

          4.   What  I have  just  described is  what the  Bible  calls The
     renewing of the  mind.  This is  clearly identified in  Romans 12:1-2,
     Ephesians 4:22-27 and James 1:21.  Also compare Philippians 3:7-15.

          I was talking with a Christian lady  one day who has many painful
     memories in her past.  She was telling me that she had gone through  a
     year and  a half of conventional  psychological therapy.   The bulk of
     secular  therapy today is focused upon going  forward.  That is, first
     identify the  problem, accept it  for what it  is, and then  walk away
     from it; never looking back.  This sounds good and works well for many
     people to a certain degree.  It  is not a Biblical principle, however,
     but is the best man can do.  The unfortunate aspect of this philosophy
     is that many Christians believe it is somehow Scriptural and thus, God
     ordained.   God  heals our  woundedness by  the Biblical  principle of
     renewing the mind.

          This lady  told me that she did  not need to go  backwards in her
     life so  she needed  no  intercessory prayer.    Her husband,  in  her
     opinion, on  the other  hand, needed  it desperately  and if the  Lord
     would fix her husband, she would be happy.  May I point out that  this
     woman's victory now can only be accomplished if her husband submits to
     her way  of thinking concerning the marital  relationship?  What if he
     doesn't?   Does that mean she will still be  in bondage?  If she holds
     fast to  the idea that God has  finished His work in her  life and her
     mind  needs no renewing,  then she is,  in fact, in  bondage.  Bondage
     isn't the will of God for anyone.
          My point is this.   If you believe all  was settled at the  cross
     for you, then you  cannot obey the command  of the Lord to renew  your
     mind.    Yes,  all was  finished  upon  the cross  by  the  Lord Jesus
     salvitically but  to complete our  fellowship with Him  throughout the
     rest of our life, there must be  the renewing of the mind in areas  of
     woundedness.  If  this is  not done,  we allow the  devil to  function
     behind the scenes;  corrupting our relationship with  the Lord through

          5.  A deep pain I had been literally carrying inside of me for 11
     years was triggered by a current event in my life.  It is true that my
     daughter was in both  events, that is,  in the one  11 years ago,  and
     again on July the 4th but this is not always the case.  Once the devil
     has a  legal right,  spiritually speaking, to  throw his  fiery darts,
     events need  not be  identical or  even similar.   This  same anger  I
     experienced could have  been triggered by some other  current event in
     my  life.  The woundedness  is then tapped and out  comes the hurt and
     the pain and the subsequent reaction to  that pain is acted out in our
     emotions and feelings.

          6.  I  was healed.   I know many  Christians attempt to  identify
     this type of prayer as  new age mind renewal, hypnotic suggestiveness,
     visual  manipulation,  creative  meditation, self  hypnosis,  and even
     demon hunting, but the truth is, I  was healed by the True Lord  Jesus
     Christ.  As  Jesus said Himself, if  Satan would cast out  himself, he
     would be dividing himself from his own kingdom.  See Matthew 12:22-32.
     I did not create  or fabricate this memory, I was  just remembering it
     due to the pain  embedded in the past  event.  I wasn't meditating  or
     trying  to generate  a  supernatural aura  of  some kind;  I  was just
     praying and allowing  the Lord  Jesus to  minister to me.   Satan  was
     defeated, I was set free from  the pain, and another door was  slammed
     on demonic access to my life.

          I new I  was healed for  three reasons.  First,  the pain of  the
     memory no longer hurt.  Second, I can return to the same memory at any
     time and the  pain is still gone.   Third, my  anger began to  subside
     which I  had toward my  daughter.  Does  that sound like the  devil or

          7.  Something I  haven't mentioned related to this  true story is
     what I did once the Lord Jesus healed me.  Now realizing that I had in
     fact given place to the devil and allowed his thoughts and feelings to
     become mine, I  confessed this to the  Lord as sin.   Why?  Because  I
     recognize I had given Satan ground upon which to gain a foothold in my
     life.  Now that I was healed and saw the situation as the Lord saw it,
     I prayed and took  back all the ground I had given  the devil and gave
     it back  to the Lord  for His honor  and glory.   This closed  off the
     demons ability  to communicate further  with me with his  thoughts and

          8.   When the demonic figure seen in my memory shrank in size, it
     spiritually depicted  his loss  of authority in  my life  through that
     event.  As he walked away, he was unable to verbally  communicate with
     me.   Why?  Because he had  no more access to my  renewed mind in this
     area.  I had  been healed of all  related to that  one event.  When  I
     realized  he was thinking, "Do I really  have to go?" it was because I
     spiritually recognized  in my spirit  the Holy Spirit telling  me this
     was what the  demon was thinking.  The demon could not communicate his
     thoughts  directly to my  thoughts any longer  because he  had no more
     legal right to do so.

          9.    Behavior modification  and  other  psychological techniques
     would not have  worked in this healing process.  In  fact, I had been,
     for many years,  been confessing God's Word, praying  for my daughter,
     being faithful  in my walk with the Lord,  and doing everything else a
     Christian should  be doing.  Yet, I still had given place to the devil
     in a time of weakness unknowingly.  With this spiritual license to now
     function in my  life, fear, doubt, loneliness, helplessness,  and many
     other such  things were easily  tapped into  by the demonic  realm and
     exploited.   My  point  is this.    Even quoting  God's  Word in  this
     situation would  not make me feel any  better.  Why?  I  had given the
     devil a foothold in  which he could operate.  No, I  had not turned my
     life over to Satan.  No, I had no demon dwelling inside of me; he just
     had access  to my  thoughts and feelings  because I  had, unknowingly,
     given him place  to function.   Unless the Lord  Jesus shows us  these
     areas  which need  the  renewing of  our  minds,  we will  still  find
     ourselves attempting to deal with very painful past events.


          I  realize many  Christians do not  believe in  demonic influence
     once a person has  been born again.  They may believe demons have some
     access to our lives  as Christians but only in the area of  sin.  As I
     pointed out, this had nothing to do with sin in my life.  The event 11
     years ago had nothing  to do with me committing sin  and even my anger
     this time  was not unjust or unholy; it  was the result of frustration
     and  concern.     The  circumstances,  and  the  strong  raw  emotions
     associated  with the  event,  created  an atmosphere  in  which I  was
     spiritually  sensitive and  vulnerable.  I  did not realize  I had let
     down my shield  of faith which  would have protected  me from all  the
     fiery darts  of the devil.  I was, in  fact, too busy being afraid for
     my daughter's whereabouts  and safety.  When a  demon, therefore, took
     advantage of  this situation  by  tossing a  few of  his thoughts  and
     feelings  upon my  thoughts and  feelings, the  seeds, or  ideas, were
     planted and  I reacted  to them unawares.   Over  the years,  the pain
     deepened and anger helped suppress the  pain.  It then took an  act of
     God, if you  please, to reach  into my mind,  expose the lies,  and to
     heal my  broken heart and  to renew my deceived  mind.  In  short, God
     used a current day experience for His honor and glory in order to heal
     an  old wound  that was  effecting my  relationship  with him,  and my
     daughter, all  these years.   If  you are  going to  give anybody  the
     credit, therefore, praise God and not the devil for this healing in my

                              End Of Chapter 12

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