Richard Chandler - 02/05/2009
It started back when I was 22. I was just coming to the LORD and had just gotten married to my wife Rachel. I was very hungry and just trying to draw near to GOD the best I knew how, and the LORD was revealing Himself.
I was beginning to have dreams and visions, and experiencing the LORD speaking to me. The LORD was speaking, teaching and really drawing me near.
In my hunger for more of GOD I began to attend revival meetings with many speakers associated with Toronto and Brownsville. For about three or four years I was just attending meetings with speakers from Toronto, Brownsville and the Kansas City prophetic movement, even Fresh Fire Ministries.
My wife and I were happy at first, but after a while I got so minded toward pursing the LORD that I kind of left her in the dust. People did warn me many times. Eventually I came across a prophetic power minister out from the Toronto movement, and got to know him pretty well. He had all sorts of manifestations in his meetings, like the laughter, and people would get prayed for, and many times visitations would occur after prayer. In many of his meetings you would see all sorts of strange signs and wonders, you would smell what smelled like frankincense and different fragrances. Sometimes in his meetings people would begin to feel fire come on them. One meeting he said people would begin to see streams of gold in visionary experiences. I got involved with him, and our pastor even opened up our church to his ministry. We had meetings, and we had a lot of these strange manifestations. One thing I noticed at this time was that the focus became completely on experiencing manifestations, not one loving JESUS and becoming more like HIM, manifesting HIM. It was kind of like a meeting would happen and then like it was a big show, hoping I could experience something new.
One weekend I decided I wanted to go to a retreat in Washington state with our worship leader and some of our youth at the church. We went and I remember having an experience where I had a prophetic pastor lay hands on me and prophesy to me. I went to the floor and remember I experienced the laughter manifestation. I was not faking it, and it was like I felt someone literally laughing through me.
I remembered even one night that my wife and I got in an argument about me going to meetings. My wife wanted me to spend time with her and my son. That night at the meeting a prophet who was there came and prophesied to me and said, "I see you had trouble coming to the meeting tonight, and the LORD says that this is the time I want you to be coming to meetings and getting filled up". Looking back now I know that that was definitely not a word from GOD. I told my wife what the prophet prophesied, and she got upset (I could tell). I now know that GOD would not have put a knife in our relationship like that.
At first she was coming near to the LORD, and her heart was softening. After time she began to resent me and the LORD as a result of me not giving her attention. A lot of this was my fault, and at other times I would get a vision where it seemed like the LORD was telling me to fast. So I would end up fasting and my wife would get really angry, especially on her days off which made her angry. Our marriage was going downhill, and it was my fault. It really got bad when I got so hungry, that I began to fast maybe two or three days a week. I went from 140 to 123 pounds, and I stayed that way for about two years.
When I began to fast more, then the prophetic began to increase in my life. I began to listen to teachings from Fresh Fire Ministries about soaking, or another name is meditative or contemplative prayer. Just a practice of meditating on JESUS, and being still for long periods of time. I began to listen to an offshoot ministry from Fresh Fire Ministries, called Abidin Glory Ministries, and I listened to the prophetic school they had, then I began to increase in visions.
In the middle of this the LORD began to open my eyes to the truth. The enemy was sending new friends into my wife's life from the Bahai faith. Rachel began to come to me with a lot of questions. I remembered hearing the testimony of Sadhu Sundar Singh, an Indian Apostle in the early 1900s of when Satan came to him and tried to get him to leave the LORD and become a prophet of a new religion that would join religions together, and he refused. My wife was being deceived into the Bahai faith. So I agreed to go and talk with the people of the Bahai faith. One of them talked with me about Isaiah 61 being about Mohammed coming from Bosrah, and the prophecy was referring to Mohammed. Then he went on to talk about Rev.19 when the LORD had a name written on him, that no man knew but HE Himself. Then he proceeded to say that this was Mohammed, and that Christianity to him is what going back to the Jewish law would be to us.
I went to go and talk with them, and they began to talk with me about the two witnesses. They were just basically saying to me, how could I believe that these two prophets were going to really breathe fire out of their mouth? Then at the end of our discussion they talked about Rev.19, and the man riding on a white horse, with a double-edged sword coming from his mouth. Then he just kind of told me that both were spiritual and not literal incidences and I was wrong. I was really broken, and humbled. I felt like and really thought in my heart that they truly had more understanding of Revelation than me. I tried to avoid them for awhile, while my wife was just kind of saying, "Why can't any Christians disprove and truly explain Isaiah 61 and Revelation to any Christians to stop them from converting to the Bahai faith?" Many times the Bahai leaders would go to PhD professors of theology and ask them to disprove them and their interpretation to stop converts from converting to Bahai. Even one of the guys in the room I met was a former Christian. I was really broken and confused. I went home and fasted for a day, just praying and not understanding why the HOLY SPIRIT was not with me like with Stephen in the book of Acts, to be able to refute them with the spirit of Wisdom. I eventually just asked the LORD for the truth, and told HIM if Bahai was truth I would convert, but I didn't believe it was true. It was a couple of months later that I was on the Prophecy Club website, and the LORD led me to UBM, and then I began to hear about the book of Revelation and I knew the LORD was showing me the truth.
The LORD has been really merciful and gracious to me in bringing me out of this deception. I realize that it truly has been just His mercy and grace. Even at times my old mp3 player broke, I always used it to listen to all the false prophetic ministries' messages. My wife got me a new one and it got stolen. I couldn't understand why, but now I know the LORD was trying to keep me from listening to those messages.
A few months ago my wife Rachel and I separated, and my wife pretty much left the LORD.
My mother began to recognize the deception I was in, and so did my pastor. I wouldn't listen to anyone though, and if anyone would start talking about the false revival manifestations being false, I would just kind of label them with having an unreceptive religious spirit. I felt like they were missing this new thing GOD was doing.
During this time my mother was praying for me constantly. I would have dreams sometimes where I was under the influence of marijuana, which I dismissed as demonic. I now realize that the LORD was trying to tell me I was under the influence.
I was listening one day and heard a UBM broadcast where a man was talking about coming out of the prophetic movement. Then UBM talked about deception and what was going on in Lakeland, FL. At first I was thinking 'religious spirit', and then some thoughts were going through my head, saying, "What if I'm wrong?"
Slowly the LORD began to open my eyes and show me I was in serious deception.
At this time my wife put our house on the market, and said, "I'm selling the house and we'll split the money". She wanted to separate. So I began to fast and cry for my marriage, and that our house would not sell. Our house sold, and I didn't know where to go. The LORD kept telling me to go home, but the false prophetic spirits were giving me leadings to stay and get my family together. I didn't understand why, but eventually I kind of had no options, so I moved back to Texas with my son. I didn't understand why GOD didn't stop the house from selling, and put our marriage back together at that time.
When I got to Texas my mother began to just tell me that I was being deceived under a false prophetic spirit. I didn't really take seriously what she was saying. Then one night I was up praying and was receiving words of knowledge while praying for a guy I knew. The word of knowledge I received the night before showed that he was out drinking that night. The next day I asked him about this, and he told me he was at home sleeping. Then I knew I was really under a falsehood of the devil.
My wife was coming down to visit me, and bringing my daughter for a visit. The day she was coming it seemed again like the LORD was telling me to fast. I really began to see how this thing was operating on me, even using visions.
I remember one night the LORD gave me a dream that I was high on marijuana, while one lady and my cousin Michael were with me while I was watching Christian TV. Then when Michael got up and went to the kitchen, I got up and could feel the unclean spirits all over and inside of me. I went to the bathroom where I looked in the mirror and woke up. I knew the LORD was telling me that two spirits were controlling me, and using the things of GOD to distract and keep me under their influence. I got up and went to the bathroom (place to clean up and get rid of waste) and looked in the mirror and woke up.
I was trying to get delivered, but my faith was not what it used to be, and somewhere in there a spirit of unbelief got into my life so that no matter how much I tried or remembered of what the LORD did for me, I always felt like there was an invisible wall of unbelief I just couldn't break through.
During this process, the LORD began to tell me to stop pursuing the prophetic gifts and stop asking for a visitation from the LORD at this time. I thought, "Well the word says delight yourself in the LORD, and HE will give you the desires of your heart". So I thought, 'no way'. Then when I would start praying about this I kept feeling uncleanness in my heart.
The LORD gave me another dream that I was committing adultery with a lady with short hair (Jezebel); and then got up to go to the bathroom, looked in the mirror, and woke up.
One night I also remember that I was praying for the prophetic after the LORD told me to stop, and the next morning my son told me he had a dream that he saw JESUS, but in his heart he knew it wasn't really JESUS. He said that Satan dressed like JESUS asked him what he wanted for a gift, so my son told him he wanted a pony. Then he opened the gift and there was a demon in the box.
I didn't understand at first, but now I understand that GOD didn't save my marriage like I thought HE would so he could bring me down here in Texas to get me delivered and restored to HIM. Also, GOD wanted me to stop my pursuit of the prophetic, because this was doing nothing but feeding the spirit of falsehood controlling me. The LORD began to reveal to me that I'm not a prophet, which was what I wanted to be, but that was not my calling. I'm not saying don't earnestly desire the gifts, but make sure your heart is right.
I have to say that I know our marriage is restored by GOD's grace; I don't know when, and I don't know what it's going to look like. I have gone through severe chastening from the LORD, but I thank the LORD. I now know, and I have to say that even when I was in the false revival meetings, I always internally felt that what I was seeing was not right, but I ignored that voice.
The LORD is merciful, and I'm just constantly crying out to him now for Grace and the LORD has shown me the most awesome possession on the face of this earth is HIM. HE is the prize. It's to fully gain HIM and have HIM gain us. It was HIS grace to even open my eyes to see the truth, or else I would have had HIM say to me on that day, "Depart from me, you worker of iniquity. I never knew you".