I came to Christ and became a "born again believer" of Jesus in December 1984. Then the nightmares began...
Literally. The nightmares where demonic entities have invaded my dreams, terrorizing me, trying to harm me, even lying to me, all started after I accepted Christ. After I became a threat to that other kingdom.
They even harassed my children from before they were old enough to accept Christ (they all eventually did - one as a direct result of seeing Jesus' power at kicking demon butt). They've even harassed my husband and me the same night at the same time.
But---in the book of Judges, God explains why He didn't drive out all of the enemy nations but left them for the Israelites to drive out, themselves. "..he did this only to teach warfare to the descendants of the Israelites who had not had previous battle experience - Judges 3:2
These nightmares and even those of my children have been proving grounds for spiritual warfare. We have all learned how powerful the very Name of Jesus is and that we are not powerless even though we may be taken aback. So while they're a pesky nuisance and sometimes manage to even scare me a bit, I notice that in recent years I just have an attitude towards these imps and I praise the Lord because He never leaves me to fight it out alone..
Things I've learned:
1. The name of JESUS is powerful and effectual to defeat any foe. Satan really has to flee at the Name. Even singing praise in your sleep scares the evil one away.
2. The Enemy knows this and will do anything to keep the Name from our lips.
3. His tactics are to produce fear, false guilt or shame and to lie. Don't believe the hype.
4. Don't get scared, get indignant!
5. The Enemy also knows that if a believer can come into the knowledge of the authority God has given us over him....it's all over. (Hence the hokey Halloween disguises the enemy shows up wearing to creep us out of our authority).
6. When I'm doing the most damage to the kingdom of darkness, attacks increase. They expose the existence of a hierarchy among the demonic principalities. That's no reason to back down.
7. Nightmares often accompany prophetic and discernment giftings. The Enemy tries to turn a spiritual gift on its head.
My waking applications:
I want to be a student of all there is to know about my identity and the authority I have as a Believer.
I want to be bold where others are faint; I want to spread this boldness around. I want to say JESUS' name as often as I can, knowing who it keeps at bay.
I declare what GOD says, and He says that 'if He is for us, who can be against us?'
I live with an awareness that there is a spiritual reality that is impacting and impacted by all of the decisions I make in my life, and that outcomes are affected when I pray.
The angelic Hosts are real and at the service of those of us who are heirs of salvation. I don't need to see them to know they are all around me (but boy, it sure is fun to see them!)
So my brothers and sisters - say your prayers before you go to sleep. Pray over your children. "Plead the blood" - do the whole nine yards. But rest in the confidence that God is never asleep. He is the one who desires to invade our unconscious mind with sweet dreams, prophecies, heavenly encounters and visions. Should the 'other one' show up trying to terrorize you out of your inheritance - don't fall for it. If you can't say Jesus, just think His name. Disarm the enemy. Then turn over and go back to sleep!