He said He wanted to Kill Me

Last night I decided to go to church for prayer service. Before I was married and had kids, I lived at Times Square Church. I was there every Tuesday and Friday night and all day Sunday. I even served on the choir before someone told me they wanted to kill me.

I never told a soul. I just stepped down quietly from the choir. I mean, who in their right mind was going to stay in the choir after that? Maybe I should have stayed, but deep down, I was disillusioned.

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Early one Sunday morning, I was praying alone in the choir section when I sensed a presence. I opened my eyes to find a tall male standing before me. I recognized him, he was in his choir robe like me. He said he needed to ask my forgiveness. I asked him for what (since I never had any dealings with him). He said for wanting to kill me.

I think I was traumatized at that moment because all I said was, I forgive you. I can’t believe that’s all I said.

Why couldn’t I have told him, “Hey dude, what did I ever do to you to warrant your wanting to kill me?” I mean, wouldn’t that have been more normal?

Eighteen years later, I think back and wish I would have had enough courage to ask him why.

I went through a whole gamut of emotions and questions. All I was doing was praying. Aren’t you suppose to feel safe in church? I did not feel safe at all. I actually never looked at church the same way again.

Don’t get me wrong, I love Times Square Church greatly. It is where God brought me, put me, planted me and where I grew up in the faith. It is where I first experienced the presence of God. The preaching is phenomenal and I’ve made great friends there. Many who are now leaders or serving overseas as full time missionaries.

It’s not the church’s fault, it’s not anyone’s fault. However, last night, memories began to flood my mind and emotions began to well up. Yes, I forgive this man, wherever he is. The irony of it all is that I didn’t even know his name. But his face will be forever etched in my memory.

Conceptually, I understood at twenty-seven that evil was using this man as a host. But it’s still hard to grasp something like this magnitude, especially since it happened in church by a supposed brother in Christ. I couldn’t understand it, still don’t and perhaps I never will.

However, since then, I no longer close my eyes when I pray in church. I do for second or two, but then I open them again. I only pray with abandon when I’m alone and in the confines of my home.

I wonder if anyone else has had a similar experience in church?  If so, please share. I would love to know I’m not alone.

  • A sad and touching story, my friend. I think many of us are wounded in church, whether through sexual abuse, cover up, self-serving excommunications et, but I have to admit, this is the first I’ve heard this one. Inside of us something dies when Christ is not represented well. I’m sorry for the trauma you suffered.

    • Thank you so much, Trudy. I appreciate your heart and kind words.

  • Wow this is really powerful. Any way you slice it, God saved you. That’s what I choose to takeaway from this. Yes evil is there, but to focus on it takes away from God’s glory and also from the big picture, at least in my own life. (Please don’t interpret this as me telling you what to do/how to feel.)

    • I understand exactly what you are saying. Thank you. And a big AMEN! 🙂

  • Michael Sullivan

    I’m glad you are okay. The problem was never with you. It’s with the individual.

  • Wow my friend! What an amazing story of grace and God’s goodness. Yes there was someone who wanted to kill you, but God protected you, then, in very Christ-like fashion, He gave you the grace to give forgiveness. For the man that stood before you that day, your words could have been the saving grace and the healing balm he needed to be set free. You do not know all of the story, but the part you do know is pretty amazing! Thank you for sharing it!

    • Thank you, Dayna. You are a blessing! Sending you a big hug.

  • Jeanne

    It is unfortunate that there are people like that in the world and especially to have it happen at Church is frightening. It is obvious that the problem is with the man and not you. However, unfortunately, you became his “target” for no reason. Don’t beat yourself up about not having the “courage” of not speaking out. There would have been no logical or reasonable answer from that man anyway. You did the right thing at the time. I hope that you can heal from this experience.

    • Thank you Jeanne. You are such a kind soul which is why I love you and you have been my friend all these years.

  • I haven’t experienced a situation like this in church, but I do understand a little about dealing with traumatic events. Praying for continued healing and comfort for you, and that the Lord’s presence will unravel whatever covering fear has woven. -Candace

    • Thank you so much, Candace. I appreciate your comment and heart of compassion. Bless you.

  • This is a tragedy. If there’s one place you should feel safe, it should be church. My heart goes out to you.

  • wow. you have crazy stories, Pilar. thanks for sharing them.

    • Yes. Unfortunately, there are more. I am here and in my right mind because the grace of God. Thanks for reading and commenting, Jeff. I appreciate you.

  • I wish that is all that happened to me. I am not welcome in most churches because there is a group of “Christians” who meet together to plot how they can best destroy me. This has been going on for about 18 years. They even pay people money to attack me. I am sure that 100s of thousands of dollars has been spent attacking me in every way possible. Even framing me trying to put me in prison, but God saved me. I got to the point that I wanted to commit suicide. But God saved me. But THEY still want to destroy me, even after some of them died from head issues; one from an aneurysm on the brain, and another fell off his bicycle though he was hardly moving, and barely hit his head on a curb, and even though he had a bike helmet on, he was dead within an hour. But that does not seem to phase them. (Why is your picture showing up next to my post??)

    • I think my pic shows up as a default for those who comment and don’t have either a gmail account or are subscribed to Disqus. Michael, I am terribly sorry this is happening to you. Reading this makes me so sad. Why are they doing this? I do not understand. May the Lord protect and comfort you. God bless you.

      • Mainly Satan put them up to it. Demons can whisper into people’s ears and put thoughts into their minds. But they think they are doing God a favor because they don’t like my anti-pre-tribulation views, anti-eternal security, anti-must have the gift of tongues to have the Holy Spirit, and much more. I know there are plenty of others who also believe this, but the devil has targeted me because he knows I am called to speak the truth about these doctrines.

        • Yes. Very true. I will pray for you. You believe what you believe and you have the right not to be bullied, intimidated or threatened by anyone who disagrees. I am sorry this is happening to.you.

  • You didn’t ask him something more “normal” because it probably felt too surreal. What a spooky thing to happen at any time, but to happen in church is mind boggling. I am happy for you that he didn’t follow through on his initial impulses. I can see how the incident would come back to haunt you. Thank you for sharing this experience. I hope by sharing it, you find some relief and peace about it.

    • Thank you so much for you kind words and support. I also appreciate your reading and commenting too. 🙂

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