Diagnosis of paranoid schizophrenia consigned him to a life on meds, but God had other plans

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By Michael Ashcraft –

The monster at the top of the stairs started Andrew Goodwin’s slide into schizophrenia, when he lost all hope in the future until Jesus set him free.

“It was a green figure about four feet tall with yellow eyes with this really evil sadistic look,” Andrew describes on The Ex-Schizophrenic Perspective YouTube channel. The four-year-old ran to his Mum. When she came, there was no longer any monster. She looked through every drawer and closet to reassure her son and put him to bed.

Andrew, of Retford, England, didn’t see any more monsters. But an inexplicable evil presence remained. It remained with him until he was 20 years old.

Then as a pre-teen, he was sexually abused by a slightly older video-gaming friend. “I could hear audible laughing voices cackling at me,” he said. “It was almost like the devil had spoken into my life: You can’t trust your family. They can’t look after you. They can’t protect you.”

Andrew kept the abuse a secret and surrendered to an inner world of psychological torture. He started smoking marijuana at 13 and moved on to other drugs. Nothing could help. “I didn’t trust anybody. I couldn’t’ trust anybody.”

At age 17, his dad caught him pointing his figure at the TV set trying to control things paranormally. Dad, a mental health worker himself, took him to be checked, and Andrew received a chilling diagnosis: He had paranoid schizophrenia and would spend the rest of his life on medication. He would be unemployable.

“I lost any hope that my life could amount to anything,” he says. “As far as I was concerned, life was a very lonely place.”

The psych meds slowed his thinking down. Andrew consumed illegal drugs to forget about the pain. “I wasn’t coping very well at all. I was in deep depression,” he says. The only reason he didn’t commit suicide was he didn’t want to hurt his family.

“I was an individual who felt nobody understood me,” he recounts. “I felt alone and isolated and completely hopeless.”

At age 20, he was rummaging penniless in search of cigarette butts when he came across a young man in his first year of Bible college.

“God has a plan for your life,” he told Andrew. “God can rescue you.”

The Bible student asked to pray for Andrew. “When he started praying, the most amazing thing happened. I felt this power come upon me. It was like Heaven dropped down, and everything in me changed. I felt this power, this love more powerful than anything I’d ever felt in my life. Forget the highs of drugs, this was real and life-changing.”

Andrew received Jesus into his heart. That first moment with God was glorious, But his lift-off in God was rocky. For starters, he only attended church twice in the next six months. He also still heard voices in his head.

“People want a quick fix, but I needed a lot of help,” he says. “It’s like something that has got so twisted up that it takes time to get unraveled. It took me 20 years to get messed up. Getting fixed wasn’t going to happen overnight.”

Eventually, Andrew started attending church regularly. He got baptized. He went to conferences for deliverance. He got prayed for. He learned the Word.

One key moment was when he opened the Bible to the Book of Romans. All he could see was one word. It was as if all the other words blurred and were unreadable. The word: trust.

The word caused him to flashback to the demons who deprived him of trust when he was child. It carried him through the years of remembrances of how he would never let any friend get close. It caused him to realize he didn’t trust his own family. Any vestige of trust had been obliterated from his mind, heart and soul.

In that moment, Andrew decided to trust God.

“This was one of the brilliant things. God is able to speak to us despite how messed up we are,” Andrew says. “God gave me that one word: to trust. I didn’t let go of it. I felt that even if I’m going through turmoil, I’m going to believe that God is going to heal me, he’s going to bring me through it.”

Today, Andrew is schizophrenia-free. What the doctors said would never happen, the hope that family and friends lost in him, God gave through a process of deliverance of years.

To learn more about a personal relationship with Jesus, click here

About this writer: Michael Ashcraft pastors a church in the San Fernando Valley of Los Angeles.

1 COMMENT

  1. Very touching! It’s my belief that most mental illness is a demon(s) that is affecting the person. Unfortunately, the meds they’re given often open a way for more demons, particularly antidepressants. All they need is someone to lay hands on them in the Name of the Lord Jesus, to be delivered of the demons and set free. I have been involved in this ministry over many years. So happy for Andrew!

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