21 Oct 1996

Hello Ben.

I said that I did not, and still do not, know what an angel "feels" like. You said, "Sure you do. You didn't, but now you know what the presence of God's angels feels like, because you've experienced it. I say that because your description fits my experiences."

What, specifically, in my description, fit your experiences? And is the experience always the same? Or does it vary, depending on the individual angel speaking to you? In other words, what is the "pattern recognition" of an angel?

There was an article in the paper Saturday about a woman here who says she talks to angels. One thing in common between all our experiences seems to be that angels don't waste words. Short sentences, to the point.

>What happened [at St. Augustine] was apparently a rescue mission. Because I believe God rescues, I believe God sent His angels to rescue those Indians.

I see that your belief in a God Who Rescues gives meaning to your experiences. But there is more here than just belief. You've had a lot of instruction, conversations, and clearer visions of what was actually happening during these incidents. And you've spent a fair amount of time analyzing your data. Any scientist worth his salt examines the information from every conceivable angle prior to drawing any conclusions. You are also willing to modify your suppositions based upon further information. This is why I've asked to be your "student." I do not have the logical bent of mind to be a scientist. But I'll learn what I can, and leave the rest to God.

>Yes, indeed. From the results, you were on track at that time [in St. Augustine]. Therefore, what you were doing then is what you need to do more of -- and what you were not doing then is what you need to do less of.

I've spent the last few weeks trying to remember why it seemed so easy for me to talk with God then. I think -- I'm not sure here... still sifting through memories -- I think I had suspended belief in "God as Santa Claus with a flame-thrower." That image came back strongly later, probably as soon as something negative occurred in my life.

>So you proved you don't have to "really believe" God is listening. To just sort of hope is sufficient.

Yes. Interesting, that God never requires a lot of faith, or trust, or belief from me. Only willingness to believe, or suspend belief, as the situation warrants. Only trusting as much as I am able.

>Every theology is a theory. We can't know for sure which theology is true, because a lot of theological assertions are not testable, but we can *choose to assume* that what Jesus said about God and the Kingdom of God is true.

I agree with that. But I must also have some way of testing a goodly portion of the theory. I believe in reincarnation, in part, because it's a fairly good explanation of why things are the way they are. And in part, because there are a few legitimately documented cases of people who remember past lives. I believe in life after death because I've seen ghosts, and "heard" disembodied spirits, and spent time in astral states. I believe in angels, now, because I've heard and felt beings, who, if they *weren't* angels, *should* be. And my friend, Ben Swett has shared experiences that are very similar, and he believes these beings are angels. I believe in an historical Jesus because years ago I set about researching to disprove his existence, and ended up proving it instead. And I believe in God because I've seen the results of God's personal involvement in my life. So, I *choose to assume* that what Jesus said about God and the Kingdom of God is true, based in part, upon personal experience, and in part, upon what others have said about their experiences, and in part, because I can respect Jesus' theology.

>"Santa Clause with a flame-thrower" is a perfect description of a very bad theology! May I quote you?

Yes, but it's not my idea. A friend told me that, after hearing it from a friend, who heard it from a friend... I thought everyone had heard it.

I said I felt, "The Kingdom of God was for others, not for me. And angels talked to God and mystics and prophets, and even 'good' Christians, but not to me."

>Another false notion, instilled when you were young, disproved by experience.

Remember Helen Keller? Before her teacher finally broke through her isolation, experiences meant nothing to her, no one and no thing in her life had meaning because nothing was named. Her teacher's fingers forming shapes in Helen's hands were only sensations, movement, nothing more. The moment Helen understood that everything had a name, the world was suddenly a place of meaning, a place of belonging.

Before reading your web pages and talking with you, "the Kingdom of God" had no meaning for me. It was like any other fable or story. And I found myself saying "Interesting, if true." My experiences with the Light-show in 1987 and the angels at St. Augustine were like the finger-shapes on Helen's hands. Sensations without meaning. The Kingdom of God is a reality to me now because you helped me name my reality.

>Perhaps some of the self-doubt is coming from spirits who don't want you to believe. Or perhaps you are struggling with denial because some things seem too good to be true. If so, the subconscious defense is against the possibility of disappointment.

Yes. I have been disappointed in God. I suppose I'll resolve it some day. As to the possibility of interfering spirits -- that's quite possible. As I work through the discernment process, I realize that a large part of my confusion has been the fact that I perceive *many* voices, and I have not learned to tell them apart.

>It's like being in an airplane: I hear a lot of voices in my one set of earphones -- one of the voices is mine; some are from automatic systems in my aircraft; and some are coming in through my radio from any number of sources outside my aircraft. Some of those sources may be foolish, or foes pretending to be friends.

This analogy is a good one. When I was in the Navy, my duties took me aboard naval aircraft on numerous occasions. At least 3 different times, someone in the flight crew handed me a set of earphones so that I could listen to the radio transmissions. It was a mystery to me who was talking to whom, and I recognized someone only if I knew the individual personally. It would have been wonderful if someone had identified each voice to me. And of course, that's what I want now... some way -- someone -- to identify each voice.

So Ben, any guidance you can give on identifying the origin of these voices would be a big help. I will continue the discernment process, and the prayer. And I'm going to see if I can get a phone number for this woman here who talks to angels. If I reach her, I will tell her about your web pages.

Bless you, Ben! Thanks!


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