Freed from Paranoid Schizophrenia
My name is Geoff Primanti and I am a student at Calvary Chapel Bible College. I used to be a paranoid schizophrenic, BUT GOD healed me.
I must have gone off of my medication at least eight times while I had my illness, but each time I ended up going on a trip as if I were on drugs. I believe that I truly had a chemical imbalance in my brain. For about three years during my illness, which lasted for nine years, I didn't go off of my medication at all. I took comfort in the verses of 2 Corinthians12:7-10. Please read this Scripture passage in your own Bible to find what it says. I thought that my illness was a thorn in the flesh given to me by God. But as I have grown in the Lord, I have realized that many aspect of my illness had to do with unwarranted fear — fear of going insane, fear of a vengeful God, fear of being left behind in the rapture, fear of demons — you name it. Early in the days of my illness, I ran across 2 Timothy 1:7, which says in the NKJV, "For God has not given us a spirit of fear, but of power and of love and of a sound mind." This was one of the main reasons I kept going off of my medication when I wasn't supposed to — I was not yet healed, but I longed for a healing so much that I tried to force God to heal me by throwing myself out on a limb and daring God to catch me when I fell off. But this verse also was one of the things that finally set me free from bondage, as I realized that God had not given me my illness — my illness involved a spirit of fear, and God does not give us a spirit of fear. Plus, the spirit that is given by God is the spirit of a sound mind. If someone does not have the Spirit of God, they can be driven insane by reading God's word, but reading God's word with submission to its authority will also be the a major catalyst in healing the same person. It is written somewhere in Scripture, "He sent forth His word and healed me" Let me tell you a little bit about how I came down with my illness.
I need to start about a year before it happenned. I became a Christian when I was 17, and God radically transformed my life at that time, delivering me from Dungeons & Dragons (which, being occultic, also had a part in my insanity, I believe) and pornography. But around the time I turned 18, I fell back into pornographic thoughts and the actions which come from them, and I fell hard. I also began to dabble in occultic handwriting analyzayion, which brought me to a place during my illness where I wanted to write very small because I wanted to be humble(the cure for this was Galatians 6:11–God has a Scripture for EVERY purpose under heaven!) But condemnation fell over me because of my fall, and I tried to gloss it over but I had become vulnerable to Satan's attacks. My Speech teacher at one point did a witchcraft ceremony in the middle of the classroom and when I said I would speak up about it, she threatened to sue me, and my earthly father, who is a homosexual to this day, took her side and did not defend me. At this point I regressed to infancy as my only point of defense — I could no longer turn to the Lord, for I had failed Him. I didn't have a really good grasp of God's grace at that time. I had condemnation instead of healthy conviction. My earthly father took me to the mental hospital and I totally went insane. I asked the nurse not to give me medication the night I did so, and that night I was seeing visions of shadows becoming light, light becoming shadows, and I eventually went into a closed off room where I began to scream at the top of my lungs until it hurt so much that I cried, "My God, my God, why have you forsaken me?" Then peace came over me, but not long after that I went into a catatonic state in which I was simply staring into the light above me, and when I woke up, I thought I was in the year 2036 or so. I thought that more time had passed than had actually passed. They put me on a medication called haldol, which I really hated, and later I was released. The haldol made me really sleepy and out of it.
I had been accepted to Biola University, and so I went that semester in the state I was in, but near the end of the semester I went off of my medication and ended up harrassing a family and finally I went off the deep end — almost. I remember thinking I was a second John the Baptist and it was raining hard at the time. I wanted to proclaim that the rapture was about to take place. Many people came out to do some mud sliding, but I thought they were there to be caught up. I started to feel uncomfortable in my feet, and began to stomp up and down in the water, and then everyone began to run downstream. I yelled out, "We're going to be raptured!" and my friend behind me said, "I want to go too, so take my hand!" I did, and it was a trick. He tackled me, and I thought, "Oh, no! Now I'll be left behind!" began to cry out, "Jesus!" but there was seemingly no comfort for me. Later on I was standing over a cliff and there was water underneath it, and I felt the urge to jump off based on C.S.Lewis's tale in the Pilgrim's Regress, how the Pilgrim finally made it to his destination by jumping into a pool of water and coming out through an underground tunnel to the other side. Needless to say, I was not taking it as an allegory. Later that night, I went to the breaker box in my dorm and shut out all the lights because I was afraid of them (I must have been demon-possessed or something), and I was eventually caught and kicked out of Biola. The director asked me, "Are you insane?" and I said with an insane grin, "Yes!"
I went to live with my Mom after that, and was back on haldol again. I soon found a job at McDonalds as a result of pressure from my stepdad to get a job, and soon moved out under hard circumstances. I kept speaking of Christ to my stepdad, but he associated my faith with schizophrenia, and thought they were one and the same. I had no power behind what I was saying because I had been so wacked out before, and was on medication then. My new landlord believed that I could go off of my medication, and so did my friends from Vineyard, which is an offshoot of Calvary Chapel (Now they've gotten into some weird things, but their worship music is awesome) They prophesied that I was healed, and so I went off of my medication again, and this time I ended up looking into the sun so that my right eye was blinded to a certain extent. I incorporated some of psychology with the Bible, and thought that perhaps it was the left side of the brain which was capable of lusting (the left brain supposedly controls the right eye), and therefore if I couldn't see through my right eye, I wouldn't be capable of lusting anymore. I really struggled with this. I also thought that if I masturbated with my left hand, it wouldn't be sin (shows how out of it I was), and I proceeded to not use my left hand and to not use my right eye. Now there is a verse in Zechariah that says the worthless shepherd, the antichrist, would have a sword against his right eye and against his right hand, which later led me to believe that I was the antichrist over several breaks that I had later on.
But I have been talking too long about my illness. I want to go on into how God remedied it through HIs word. As you know, I was taking medication for my illness which I had, and I believe now that this was a form of spiritual warfare. When I took the medication, my thoughts would be right on, and I would seem to walk with the Lord. But when I didn't, I used to go off.and begin to think strange thoughts which would affect my behavior. One time as I was begging to go back on my medication, this verse came to me and I ignored it, which was, "For though we walk in the flesh, we do not war according to the flesh. For the weapons of our warfare are not carnal but mighty in God for pulling down strongholds." The medication was a carnal weapon of warfare.
I was not practiced in using the full armor of God, especially the shield of faith. I used to believe that the Father was Satan, and this eventually led me to believe that Jesus was Satan too, and I even went as far as to have horrible dreams that the Holy Spirit was against me too, and against the rest of the Trinity. Needless to say, these dreams were not from God. The Holy Spirit was wooing me all that time and I didn't even know it. Through certain prophecies, He showed me that the Father, Son, and Holy Spirit are completely good, righteous, just, pure, love, etc. and that the three are one. Not one member of the Trinity is Satan. In believing that some were, I was subjecting myself to the lies of the true Satan, who is a fallen angel, as well as subjecting myself to great torment in my life. Because of the things I have just described to you, I have often wondered if I have blasphemed the Holy Spirit. But I realize that that sin is to reject Christ until after the end; for that sin there is no forgiveness, because it is the sin of failing to receive the work of Jesus on the Cross. True blasphemy of the Holy Spirt comes from a hardened heart and refers to calling the Holy Spirit's work of conviction a work of Satan. When this takes place, you cannot accept Christ because you have called the one who leads you to Christ your enemy. Anyway, Ephesians 6 says that if you put up the shield of faith, you will be able to quench the fiery darts of the evil one. These thoughts were not originating from me, but from the evil one, and, fool that I was, I was meditating on them instead of quenching them with the shield of faith. Remember 2 Corinthians 12:7-10? In that passage Christ appeared to Paul and said, "My grace is sufficient for you" He said the same to me through this very verse, but He also later appeared to me in a dream and said, "We're going to make you better."
Soon after that, Iwa sin Mexico with my friend Jim, and I came across Isaiah 52:21-23. I felt that the medication was a factor to make me, "drunk, but not with wine", so I perked up my spiritual ears at this. I took the rest of this verse as a personal promise from God, but I had learned about acting hastily from past times of going off of my medication. So I said, "I will wait on the LORD" About seven months later I had another dream. That day I had been thinking and praying about my medication, and I had the dream that night. First, I saw two angels who said, "There is going to be a judgment made concerning you." At this point I began to cry out, "God be merciful to me a sinner!" and "Don't throw me into the lake of fire!" Then Jesus in all of His mercy came down with a cold glass of water in His hand. I said, "It is good for you to be here, Lord", and then He gave me the cold glass of water to drink, and I drank it. I had just taken a two-week dose two weeks before, and I realized that it was God's timing to take me off of the medication. I went to some friends that I was accountable to, and shared with them all of the reasons why I felt I could be healed right then, and they prayed the prayer of faith over me. (see James 5:15,16). Some people advised against my going off of my medication this time, because of what had happenned in the past, but I knew that God's promise from Isaiah 52 was for me and I did not waver in unbelief. This was a God-given faith. God is the One who put that verse there, not me. As it is written, "You sent forth Your word, and healed me."
I have now been off of my medication for three months as I write this, and I am currently a student at the bible College where I am being built up in the Lord and am called to go to Indonesia eventually to minister to the Muslims there, and perhaps save some of them.