9 Things I wish I knew before becoming a Christian
Being a new Christian is eye-opening, and painful. You’ve received salvation through Jesus. Now you must learn to understand God’s uncompromising ways. His promises aren’t for the world but for those who follow his instructions.
The colossal discrepancy on earth: what the Bible teaches versus what you experience.
Over the past decade, I’ve admittedly been frustrated when I didn’t see several of my prayers answered, but during this time, I learned what doesn’t work and what actually manifests answers.
Maybe you’re an unbelieving believer…
A Christian who trusts God’s Word but is puzzled by your drowning circumstances and lack of finances.
And when crying before God fails you, you end up convinced he’s not involved in your day-to-day life.
“God is aloof.“
“Miracles are in the past.“
You may even believe He’s heartless.
So you coast. Only believing some of the Word of God.
I get it. I’ve been in your shoes before and know how disheartening it is.
What you experience is reality. Facts.
But reality isn’t truth.
There are steps you can follow to get out of a spiritual rut, have your prayers answered, and experience supernatural finances. Things I wish I knew before becoming a Christian.
The greatest weapon satan has?
Convincing you he doesn’t exist and that the things that happen to you—good or bad—are random. A world with no creator… and no devil.
You see, intelligence or smarts can’t help you to sense the other realm. As you push into God, you become receptive to the spiritual world. You become sensitive to angels. And demons.
But don’t worry, if you’re not on satan’s turf—in sin—demons cannot touch you.
However, you need to understand who you are and whose you are. You need to know the truth.
And most importantly, bridge the discrepancy gap.
Sin or disobedience (after salvation) can stop or delay God’s plan for you.
It happens every day. Traps of temptation are set before you, making it easy to succumb to sin.
Pornography, smoking, gossip, the attractive guy or gal at the office wearing a wedding ring. It’s hard to let go or walk away. Or even to recognize some delightful sins as sin.
As a Christian, the Holy Spirit scours you. And it’s painful. He burns up your overt and habitual sins and holds a flame, a light, over any hidden sin, such as pride.
God has promotion in mind for you—a position—the head of a ministry or a company. However, you carry the name “Christian”, and God wants his leaders to represent His kingdom and remain pure.
Can He trust you with money, for example?
Often, God uses satan’s traps as tests, and if you pass, you move to the next level. Then money starts to flow, opportunities arise. And the demonic assigns new demons to you.
You’re in a war.
“As God does nothing without faith, Satan does nothing without sin. Usually, some form of disobedience opens the door to demonic activity. Sin is satan’s territory. He torments those who come on his territory. And his territory is sin.”—Vlad Savchuk
Examples of hidden sin:
- Lustful thoughts
Pastor and author Vlad Savchuk said: “One of the reasons we don’t sin as Christians isn’t just so we stay away from jail and don’t go to hell. The reason why we don’t sin as Christians is so satan stays away from us. If there is no heaven and hell—if there is no eternity—I still wouldn’t want to sin, just because I don’t want to have a thief in my house.”
What works: Sin keeps you in the same place, and habitual sins attract evil. If your prayers aren’t answered, ask the Holy Spirit if there are any hidden or unrepentant sins in your life.
God’s on a different timetable.
And His plan is far greater and more expensive than your plan for your life.
For example, are you praying for a spouse? To be married by age 30? What if it doesn’t happen?
God only has the best for you, and if you know his plan is better, can you learn to trust God while you wait?
God doesn’t answer your prayers according to your smarts, intelligence, or degrees. He answers you according to the cry of your heart.
What works: Don’t take offense in God’s timetable. What is the Holy Spirit saying to you? Pay attention to what He talks about and cooperate with Him. Remember: the Holy Spirit is reliable. The longer you wait, the greater the reward.
God is preparing you.
Praying in the spirit (tongues) is more important than you realize.
When you receive tongues—your prayer language—use it!
A large percentage of Christians get stuck at this door: “Is tongues real?“
Your Christian walk will be powerless if you stand at this controversial door, opening and closing it without praying in tongues. And you’ll likely lack direction and finances.
“Contrary to what may be a common perception, studies suggest that people who speak in tongues rarely suffer from mental problems. A recent study of nearly 1,000 evangelical Christians in England found that those who engaged in the practice were more emotionally stable than those who did not.” The New York times
Peter prayed in tongues. Paul prayed in tongues (1 Corinthians 14:18). And according to best-selling author Dr. Kevin Zadai, Jesus told him the single most important thing you can do on this earth is to pray in tongues.
Praying in the spirit is not just for edification; praying in your prayer language (tongues) attracts money and opportunities and helps you accomplish what you need to achieve in a day.
What works: When you pray in the spirit, even for 15 minutes a day, your circumstances WILL NOT be the same in a month. The Holy Spirit has a no-fail track record—he knows how to lead you into prosperity.
Demons don’t go away after you’re born again—Satan assigns more to you.
The day you accept Jesus, you’re saved. But ignorant. Demons prey on new believers’ lack of understanding of spiritual laws. They know if you know your rights. And their job is to keep you from knowing.
Demons plant thoughts inside your mind and talk in the first person. Their favorite lines?
“God is doing nothing in my life.“
“God really doesn’t care about me.”
Demons are assigned by satan to destroy you. To prevent you from going to the next level. They track your moves, read your lips, and plant insidious thoughts inside your mind that will make you question God’s goodness.
When you go to work in the morning, they go with you, unless you cast them out.
The truth is that every Christian should receive deliverance from demons.
What works: Close any spiritual doors you or previous generations opened in your bloodline through deliverance. Demons can attach themselves to objects, people, and places. So toss out anything ungodly or to do with the occult—pagan books, subscriptions to horoscopes, Ouija boards, evil movies—and sanctify your house with anointing oil.
The news, social media, the economy—everything is set up to get you to doubt God’s promises.
There isn’t an area on this planet satan hasn’t infiltrated. He’s in movies, at your work, speaking through your boss. He’s even influencing at least one of your family members.
According to Dr. Bill Winston of Living Word Christian Center, two laws are working simultaneously in the world today:
- The law of the spirit of life
- The law of sin and death
The law of the spirit of life is higher than the law of sin and death (Romans 8:2).
However, if you don’t know Jesus, you’re limited to the laws of this earth.
But when you know Jesus…
You can operate by a different set of laws.
For example, you can recession-proof and secure your income when you give into God’s kingdom. And when you pray in the Holy Spirit, everything you do will be backed by a no-fail God.
Which law will you choose?
What works: The Bible teaches us that satan is the prince of the air. And it’s obvious. When you make God’s Word more real to you than what you hear and see in the mainstream media, you’re operating by the law of the spirit of life—a higher authority than the natural laws.
Some prayers remain unanswered for years.
While more significant, complex rewards—you didn’t pray for—manifest. And you won’t always understand why.
God’s silence on a matter doesn’t mean he’s not working. Look at Moses’ life… he accomplished more after age 80 for God than he did in his first 79 years.
God is more trustworthy than any person you know. He will answer you.
One of the biggest mistakes you can make?
Agreeing with your circumstances and not God’s Word.
What works: Satan wants you to affirm the facts when your prayers aren’t answered. Don’t. You need to speak God’s Word and not what you see. The sooner you believe God is good, without questioning His ways, the sooner you will receive from Him.
There are at least five types of Christians—which one are you?
Nowadays, the word “Christian” is used loosely.
A person can be having an affair, embezzling money from a company, or evading the IRS and still call themselves a Christian.
New believers are baffled when their “Christian” colleagues, type-five Christians, gossip and backstab people at work. With the same mouth, they play worship music in the office, sing to God—and mock the new secretary behind her back.
Then you get Christians who go to church and have a form of godliness but deny the power of God, type-four. These Christians don’t believe God provides, heals, delivers, or rewards—everything He did in the Bible and precisely what Jesus demonstrated when He was in the world.
Type-three worship and love God. They give to the poor. They pray.
However, type-threes struggle to see God working in their lives. They may even study the Bible, but in their minds, God is somewhere up there, busy with something we’ll one day understand. Just not today.
Type-two is the saddest type of Christian. They talk the talk and, seemingly, walk the walk.
But in private, they have habitual sins they can’t recognize and continue to go around the same mountain because they cannot pass their tests. Finally, they’re at the door to their breakthrough but can’t step in until they yield to the Holy Spirit. For example, a pastor who’s puffed because of his position but can’t see the sin in his life.
Who you and I aspire to be: a Christian who hungers for God, cuts off and closes any demonic doors, and stops overt sin.
A type-one Christian tithes, prays in tongues, and will have nothing to do with slander or sexual sin. They believe what’s written in the bible, no matter what they experience, and this is what brings them into victory—they trust God, despite satan’s lies.
What works: Don’t look at other Christians. Rather, turn down other voices in the world and tune into God’s voice. Surprisingly, satan can even turn lukewarm Christians against you.
People will leave, and new people will come.
Betrayal, mistrust, and disloyalty are rife among Christians, which is tragic.
Practically, how does this look?
Your Christian colleagues who gossip. Your Christian boss who’s having an affair. And your best friend turned traitor.
Who can you trust?
The Holy Spirit.
And your dog.
What works: You will lose people along the way, either to betrayal or death. David lost Jonathan, and all of Job’s children died in one day.
Don’t blame God when tragedy hits—Satan destroys relationships and kills people, then he incriminates God because he wants you to blame Him.
You need to praise God at the lowest points in your life. When you do, your circumstances will change.
You cannot fail.
As a new Christian, I knew the Word said satan is a liar.
But I didn’t realize demonic spirits were assigned to me, planting thoughts in my mind—lying to me—convincing me I’m lost, last, the least loved, and a loser.
Sadly, some Christians set up camp here for years, thinking these thoughts are their own and not believing the Word of God above deceiving thoughts. Many Christians even live in this frame of mind forever, accomplishing nothing for the kingdom.
The two Ts to unlocking God’s power?
Tithing and tongues.
Giving into God’s kingdom rebukes the devourer, and praying in the spirit undergirds you to accomplish God’s purposes for your life.
Demons will do everything to convince you you’re a failure. And you may even believe them, for a while. Until you realize they wouldn’t be fighting you if they didn’t think you could win. They are the losers, not you.
What works: What would you do if you knew you couldn’t fail? If you pray in tongues AND tithe, you cannot lose.
The bottom line
Finances, relationships, family—all areas in your life that can be blessed. Or cursed.
The concept of good days on earth may be foreign to you. You may have fascinating ideas about God, but are they scriptural? Or are they based on your experiences?
What happens when you sow into God’s kingdom?
If you tithe, God makes a promise to you…
“I will pour out a blessing so great that you will not have room enough to handle it.” Malachi 3:10
And when you pray in tongues, “you will receive power when the Holy Spirit comes upon you.” Acts 1:8
How desperate are you for your circumstances to change?
If you’re serious about getting your prayers answered, the most important step you can take is to follow God’s instructions.