Archive for November, 2008

BLOG 9.0 OBSESSION AND STALKERS

You knew it would come, the one and only blog on Christian stalkers. This, however, isn’t a how to be a Christian stalker. Though I did want to write that, but I don’t have enough experience. I wanted to delve into an incredibly deceptive attitude that has influenced many people in the church unfortunately of all ages. This is a repeat of a blog I did a few years ago updated.

I am just going to tell 2 stories, because a story is worth a thousand sermons sometimes. I didn’t want to put pictures in or add anything to this because it could get scary. If you are being stalked, please talk to your leadership in your church and if its serious then talk to the police. I have had to do both. If you are stalking¬¶—stop it. Falling in love is a relational process not a solo obsession of pursuit.

Don’t you love how many people mistake their own inner voice for God’s? Does that mean God sounds crazy to many people? Sometimes its obviously demonic or even plain insanity but sometimes its just the person wanting something so badly that they deceive themselves for the sake of misplaced love.

That was the case of Angelina (changed name for the book for obvious reasons and I like that name it will help me to write this). I was in a city praying for everyone in the church and when I went to the back row there was Angelina. She was very excited when I got to her although I didn’t notice how much so. When the meeting was over I could tell she wanted to connect, which happens often on trips, but I didn’t have time‚ĶSo I did a minister avoidance walk (that’s when you walk very fast holding your cell phone or some other such object trying to look busy and important so that people will leave you alone).

Years went by and since I barely noticed her I barely noticed when she moved to my city. Little did I know that the night I had prayed for her, the girl and her whole church she thought she heard from God that I was “THE ONE!” She began to get involved with people who were close to my friends, and pretty soon she was hanging out around us regularly. I just thought the guys and girls were reaching out to someone who had such a spirit of rejection and I accepted that but I avoided her for the most part because I got a weird discernment vibe from her.

In her mind, her plan was working and she actually was setting goals to become friends with my family, my friends, and ultimately me. She then moved a block away which in our town was noticeable. I would often see her car drive down our street instead of hers to get home. Then I started running into her at restaurants, grocery stores, and other public places. As a matter of fact when I would arrive to church she would mysteriously be there at the same time. I was starting to get creeped out. I asked one of our friends who seemed to know her the best if she had a job and she didn’t. She literally showed up where I was at least once a day if not everywhere I went and would say “Wow, this is God, He must want us to see each other.”

No creepy lady, it was you following me here in a very strange way trying to pursue your fantasy life.

This began her full time stalking me. I asked our mutual friend to talk to her about backing off because it was getting weird. That’s when I received a 12 page hand written letter that smelled of some Biblical fragrance that basically said she was praying for me knowing I was her husband‚Ķand that if I didn’t marry her by a certain date I would die. Yes, you heard it right. She said that she knew as soon as I came all the way to the back of her church just to pray for her. I was shocked because that night I prayed for literally everyone in the church. I had not made a special point to pray for just her as she had perceived. She also talked about demons that had been plaguing her ever since, trying to get her to deny the fact that she had heard from God about me. (I wonder if those were angels of mercy).

So I went to my leaders, and they talked to her. They asked her “Are you open to the fact that you may be deceived in this?”

She said no and again mentioned my death in a letter, but when I showed it to police they believed it was a death threat. I had to get a restraining order. She was really interestingly sweet (although strange and eccentric) in person but the letters that came in were getting darker and darker, telling me that she was God’s agent to destroy me if I didn’t fulfill the promise.¬†

Finally one day after she followed me to the prayer room in Kansas City I told one of the leaders to watch us and I felt empowered to just go talk to her. I had tried before and it hadn’t worked but I was sick of the fear she was trying to put on me. I went straight up to her in the parking lot and talked to her and told her I would NEVER marry her and that it was wrong of her to do what she was doing. Also that she was forfeiting her life to a stupid promise and what if God wanted to give her something real and she was missing it because of her fantasy life.

She looked at me and her eyes glazed over and she said “What do you mean? I never wanted to marry you! I don’t know what you are talking about. How embarrassing!”

It was the strangest reaction I could have ever expected but it worked. She went into a denial but unfortunately she picked another guy to stalk after me. I don’t think he’s dead or anything but they didn’t get married.

Another stalker I had, got very close to my whole friendship network was very intense. I had known her for quite some time but she was like a little sister in a way. I didn’t know she had made up a whole fantasy life about our marriage and kids we would have. After not seeing her for close to a year, her parents friends asked for an emergency meeting one night and I didn’t know why.

They met with me to confront me on why I was not committing to her. I had no idea what they were talking about. They said that when we had been on the date the night before that I had talked about marriage or some such thing and they wondered why I was leading her on without commitment. I told them that I was out with friends the night before and I hadn’t seen her in over a year, and I didn’t know what they were talking about. I told them that I had never dated her secretly or publicly.

That’s when they told me her story. She would actually disappear from her house and tell everyone she was dating me and that they had to keep it a secret. She made up in her whole family structure a secret life and would talk about me to them all the time. She would tell them what I had said and what I liked. It was very sad because I hadn’t talked to her at all about anything and yet she felt the need to validate her journey of marrying me by making up a fantasy life.¬†

She may have a mental disorder but scary enough she probably just chose to believe a lie. Luckily her family intervened. 

The Korean Esther

The last one is the most ridiculous and sad. I do not feel bad about publically talking about it because we made such an effort to communicate the deception this woman was in with her pastors, friends, and even face to face. I was in Korea at one point in one of the many wonderful churches and I prayed a release for those woman who felt they had the passion like Esther of the Bible. I prayed with the pastors with each one of the woman, there were hundreds. 

One of these woman had received a word from another Korean that she was about to meet her husband and that he was going to pray a release of an “Esther anointing” over her. Well, in comes Shawn who is innocently praying over a whole room of woman. This woman was hooked from the moment I prayed for her, and she went so far as to change her name to Esther because she believed I wanted to marry an “Esther.”

This began a violently intrusive stalking where she began to get as close to us from another foreign country as she could. She called sometimes 20 times a day on multiple ministry phone numbers and she tried to send gifts. Then when I would visit Korea she was in every meeting and would sit as high as she could in every meeting so that I would notice her. If I did notice her she would lip the words “I LOVE YOU” and draw circles around her heart. She got to the point where she even showed up at the airport to go home with me, saying she was ready to be married.¬†

I told her that I was not her husband and that she needed to give up this fantasy. I was very kind but direct. She then had many of my dear friends who are Korean pastors talk to her about it and they came back and told me her response. She said “I know Shawn told me such harsh statements because he is testing my devotion to him. I know now more then ever that I am to marry him!”

She began to order all my teaching CD’s from churches or conferences I was going to and would use any personal information to find out where I would be or what I was doing. She came to Los Angeles a few weeks before I moved there and told the LAPD that I was her finance and had abandoned her and they called me angry until I told them I didn’t even know her. Then she broke into houses of people who had the same name as team members of Expression58 to get my phone number out of their address books. She went to jail several times.

Then after all of this she began to show up at my meetings and we had to have her arrested many times as she would show up in wedding dresses and with notes or gifts demanding time with me and to go home with me. She tried to bribe me and offered four million American dollars to get married. 

Even after wonderful Christians spent time with her counseling her and telling her that I was not her husband she decided she wanted to take a more violent pursuit of our marriage. I don’t know what this means, but it shows you how someones deception can cause distraction, crime, and even life endangerment.¬†

Stalkers Are Us.

What gets someone to that point of deception that these girls had gotten to? (If I was a woman I would be saying guys, because many of my single girl friends have had male stalkers. These stories are even more frightening because men or more aggressive pursuers. ). How do you believe in something so much that you will lie to yourself and live a fantasy? I can’t tell you but what I do know is that stalking starts out with believing in a lie. These are only 3 of about 12 stories now and I am not telling you the most dangerous or bizarre.¬†

So even though I am only telling you my end as a man, this happens both ways. In a psychology magazine I read a few years ago, it said that men are more prone to stalk then woman. I have not done research but it would make sense. 

I don’t want to comment much on what I am writing other then this: If you know someone has a revelation or a desire to marry you (not to date or get to know you) immediately bring someone with you and tell them directly that you are not interested so they have the opportunity to hear truth. This is innocent enough in the beginning but then it can turn into full fledged stalking.

I also want to note that many girls who write me emails always qualify it saying “I don’t want to be taken as one of your stalkers.” This makes me laugh but it is also sad. Please don’t qualify it to me. I trust that 99% of woman are innocent. The real stalkers are obvious and scary. You are innocent until proven guilty. I know most girls are not writing to get me to be their husbands. I love friendship.