Welcome back to Unfiltered Faith podcast with Meredith and Stross, and today we have a very special guest, Janine, also.
OK, I'm going to ask you started started recording Amapola because I just sometimes I pronounce things weird and I didn't want to get it wrong. We are so excited. Janine is such a gem. She's such a gift from the Lord. So Janine just launched her podcast. It's called Happy and Healthy, Right? Happy and Healthy. It's on Spotify. On Apple. So go check it out, head over there. But we want it to just be kind of interactive and have you guys feel like you're just talking with us and having a chat on the couch.
So before we just get into it, I'm just going to pray really quick. Heavenly Father, thank you so much for another day, another breath of life and an opportunity to know you and grow closer to you. Thank you so much for Janine and just her being able to come and spend time with us today and record this podcast. We ask that this encourages and advise our listeners, Lord. And we just thank you for your grace and your mercy in Jesus name.
We pray. Amen.
We're really excited to ask Jenny some questions and also starting Janine, I've never met. So we're just going to, like, talk to each other. First, let's talk about how are we all doing mentally, physically, all of that?
Oh, that's always an interesting question, because I feel like we're almost like the Lord is good. Like there's not really a reason to complain. But then I'm like in the middle of this, like twenty one day fast right now. And I just feel like the Lord is just like pruning me like I got already. People sending me prayers this morning that were like hitting it on the nail, on the head or whatever that's called, just like me needing to heal from some past things.
And I was like, oh my gosh. So it's just like I think the Lord is like proving me right now. He's like molding and showing us what we need to work on, especially during this time of quarantine's like we have time to actually reflect on these things and sit in stillness and quietness and really take that time because we're always busy and rushing and like doing jumping from one thing to the next. So it sounds like you're really cleansing out, is it?
What kind of fast like food or so?
It's just like you pick some certain things you want to fast from. So for me, I try to limit some social media, try to kind of work on getting rid of certain foods as well, and then also dealing with my past, just like past hurts from guys. And so I'm trying to work on, like, overall healing from that and like letting the Lord work into that. And so just for the next 21 days or being intentional about praying and journaling and just like really that specific topic, super clear like this is what I want to do.
So that's really good. He did a social media fast that I did one for a week. Yeah. And it was really immediate. Yeah. I didn't I deleted Instagram app and I didn't go on it for a week. It was like when first quarantine started and then everything started to go down on social media and then it was like, boom, why do that? It's really refreshing.
It kind of made me just see how how almost reliant I was on other people's almost like not approve or like kind of approval, like just being on social media and seeing people like comment on your photo or whatever. It's like it shows you that you almost go to that as your source of validation for film and when it should be coming from the Lord. Dejoy Lord is our strength and not anything else. So it just really highlighted that for me and it was a good, good thing to do.
But I think starting can talk a little bit about this, but we've been talking about how our social anxiety has really I struggle with it. And you wouldn't think just by it think that. No, but I can't like when I go in public, I start I start sweating and I immediately just think that I'm being this sounds weird. I'm being watched. I don't know. I read this funny Tic-Tac that was like social anxiety is having conspiracies about yourself, like you think it's like come up with the idea.
I was like, that's weird. But I've realized that, like, for me to just lean into into the Lord, I feel the same way. I think my anxiety has gone through the roof, especially with the social media thing. It's like if you're not posting one thing or if you're posting another, people will always judge that. And I always have that fear of like, what if people are going to stay or what's going to happen? Or I don't want to be people public so they can confront me on this.
And I have no shame in my faith. But it gets kind of like like I'm sweating right now because it's like talking about it is just like, oh, what are they going to think when I posted that or what are they going to say? And at the end of the day, that shouldn't matter. It's it's God kind of teaching me that, like, you shouldn't fear other people. That's the spirit of fear and a spirit of what people have to say about you, because that forms into identity and that forms into who are you and God and not what other people think about you and say about you.
At the end of the day, what I've been learning is people will always judge you no matter what you're doing in life or posting or whatever. They can always assume one thing. And if you're struggling outside of social media, it's like they don't have to know that and they don't. And they can judge either way. But that's not their place to judge. At the end of the day, like, we have to know that we're struggling on our own and God is with us during the whole struggle.
You know what I mean? Like. It's like we we can't conform to what everyone always has and I talking about big time, like big time and I, I, I just been realizing, especially in quarantine, because I wasn't doing that well. So I was just like, wow, like gods.
And revealing to me that, like, you are fearing way too much about the people thing about you and it's something you need to work on and something that's part of my prayer during the 21 days is like I mean, I'm just so scared of people's opinions like that. One comment, like I just like derails my day. Sometimes it derails replays in my mind over and over. And that's why I was like, Lord, like, I need to be healed from this because I'm taking over.
I'm trying to get more man's approval than God's approval. And overall, we should live for God's praise over human praise, but especially with the climate of politics and just everything going on, it's like everyone feels entitled to give you their opinion. And now it's like everyone's a social justice warrior. So everyone's giving you their opinion. And you're like, what? You don't even know me. You're literally seen like a second of my life. But it's like that one comment is the most terrifying thing.
And even though it's just one person, but it's still like, oh, my gosh, someone thinks that about me. And I hate when people are like, well, stop caring about other people thing or stop letting that get to you. And you're like, but you don't get that. Like, you can't just be like, yeah, I could just be like, you're right. Let me just be right. Like, I'm fine. Thank you so much for sharing my anxiety.
Got he's like, yeah. Like no, it's just it doesn't work though. And I think it's kind of like a process that we have to as a community to we can get through it together. And with God, I feel like we can progress in that. And it's not I feel like a lot of people have that as well. And we want you to know you're not alone and we're all strongly in this together, but we'll get through it.
And another thing I like to think about, there's this verse that talks about I think it's in Romans twelve, but it talks about do not conform to the pattern of this world. And as Christians, we're told we're supposed to be set apart from the world and people that are of worldly things. And so for us, it's like we as Christians, we're setting an example. And that's how we stand out is because we're not conforming. We are going to be we're going to probably have persecution because we're we're not supposed to conform to what everyone is saying and doing.
And that's just the bottom line. And that's just like the call of a Christian is like we're going to be persecuted like Jesus told. It's like, you know, it's not an easy. But he says, blessed are those. And we're supposed to rejoice if you're not being persecuted to me. I'm like, OK, then you're almost not doing something right because then you are conforming. It's like we're like welcoming. Hey, like nobody wants. No, always.
The overall message is like love people and be kind. And yes, you can call them high, but there's like a certain way you can do it. Well, if you look like everyone else, then to me I'm like, you're doing something wrong. That's exactly what I think. It sounds harsh, but it's the truth of the gospel.
And we. Oh, my gosh. Have you seen American gospel? Oh, yeah. I was wondering. Can't we. I was. I was. We watch it together and oh my gosh, so many of the pastors I've listened to, I just like all of my beliefs and because I never really was like into the prosperity gospel, but I just listened to some people that were kind of regurgitating, regurgitating, regurgitating some of it to me. And so I was like, well, what is it then?
Is it this or is it this?
And then once I watched that, it was just like it all fell into place for me. But if you guys have time to watch it, go watch it. It's on YouTube. Types of messages that we need to hear are ones that actually convict us. And we that's what the gospel is. It should even convict believers. We're supposed to feel uncomfortable and offended when we hear the actual gospel, not just have a watered down gospel that's tickling ears and making you feel good.
It's supposed to make you want to make you uncomfortable. Yeah. So good because the Holy Spirit will convict inside. You're like, whoa, like this is something that I need to work on. And this is something that I didn't even know I had that I need to work on.
And y'all were called to love people and obviously we love God. But at the end of the day, I feel like the wrath of God is coming to and I get that conviction to do not be lukewarm like you cannot, you know, half in, half out. And that's when it's like, OK, like we're living for God and we can't like to years or parsers or just want to fluff it out. But it's like, no. So my brother in law said the other day that I thought was pretty convicting.
He was like, are we more concerned with people just getting covid and like this fear mongering thing or be more concerned about the souls of those people getting killed? Like how are we reaching the people that do have it? And what about their faith? What about their salvation? Are we more concerned with that or is more concern, which is, oh, my God, save coronaviruses. It's like, OK, well, well, yes. And yeah, we want people we want everyone to be saved.
And so was like, what are we really concerned with. Well, so that's why I speaking of the church I went to this past Sunday, they I might get this out, but so this church stayed open despite our California's governor's rules to shut down the church. And his thing was that church is essential and that right now. There's there's people dying and actually the death rate of this is is so low, but it's like we should be concerned about where they're going to spend their eternity.
Like, yes. Like if we're also concerned about people dying, then why are we keeping, like, the fellowship of church that that is essential. That is important because we care about their eternity.
So not even just that like I was watching this sermon by this pastor, he was saying that church for people is a source of hope. It gets rid of anxiety. It helps them with their depression. And right now, depression, anxiety, fear, everything is skyrocketing right now. Oh, and so, like the church is an essential because it's a part of the mental health for people. Yeah, it's part of their spiritual being. So it's like mind, body, soul.
It's a huge aspect of the triangle that you're missing. And it's not like I'm trying to condone churches to be reckless and just be open. It's like if you're abiding and you're being smart, hopefully. But a church is part of helping people with anxiety and depression because suicide rates are skyrocketing as well. So a church is essential for that as well.
Yeah, well, we're being targeted. I know that without a doubt in my mind. And it's probably only going to get worse. I'm not trying to be cynical. I'm just I'm just speaking from what I feel the Lord has been telling me. And I've been ever since last summer when I really started walking with the Lord again. He's been just revealing so much to me. And I I just feel it in my spirit. And I'm not trying to like I'm not fear mongering.
Like we live without fear that it says it like three times in the Bible. But there's almost like a sense of preparedness that I think we need to have in our hearts for what could possibly be coming. And we just need to always we need to be praying in the spirit we need to be seeking. The Lord God ultimately is control. He's sovereign over everything, but he's allowing certain things to happen. And everything he does is, is for his will and his glory.
And that will all be revealed when Jesus returns, which that's like a whole nother episode.
But it's I think that we honestly do need to just be we need to be prepared and we need to not we can't take this lightly because there's a lot that's happening. And so much has changed just in a year. Like if you think about these like three months, it's really it's like changing. Like every month something new comes. I'm like, OK, what now is going to happen? Yeah. Yeah. The earthquake wouldn't be a problem. I really just need to be like we need to just be praying and and just putting on the full armor of God every day.
And it's it's really just it's it's a spiritual battle. Yeah. Oh no. I want to talk about. So we have have you experienced your hair like is there OK, so like what's what's something that you've experienced or dealt with. Gosh. Because I've never, I never talk to you about it. I've never I know I was like I want to know, like I've never even said this on my YouTube channel. And when I was married to my ex.
When you were married, why did I not know. You didn't know about it. Why did I know? I know. That's so. Yeah, we'll get into that later, OK? No, I did. I not know that I don't tell a lot of people because it's just like such a deep part of my testimony. So how old are you. I'm twenty six. I was twenty two when it happened so that's a little fun. But I'll get into that maybe in another episode.
But when I was in that relationship I also knew that the Lord did not want me and that I knew that there was weird spiritual things on him, but that were I was a Christian, quote unquote. Oh God it was. And then something flipped. I don't know what happened. So as we're married, I literally at the was one night we were together like he was in the living room. I was in my bedroom and I could literally see black figures flying around my room and I couldn't breathe.
I was like, oh my gosh, something something is wrong. And I told him I was like, something is wrong. And then I literally could feel like this tearing. It was like light versus darkness. I could feel this tearing in my chest, like this tug. And I couldn't breathe. And I was like suffocating. And I remember he came up to me and he's like, say, Jesus, Jesus, which was funny because he was the reason why he was the door opened into my life of that.
He brought you what you say, because that's what I do.
I always go out on the name of Jesus you're supposed to like because that's when I'm like trying to call Jesus his name out. I couldn't call his name out the most terrifying thing I've ever been through in my entire life. So finally, finally get them shaken off. And I'm like, I feel free. And I'm like, that was the weirdest thing. But I knew it was because of my ex. Like, I knew for a fact it was because right when we split, it was like all my peace had returned.
But when I was with him, all this anxiety, fear, depression, confusion. So that's why I like the spirits followed him the doors to so many things in his life. Oh, I was always very guarded because I've always grown up to know, like, don't open those door damn entertaining. And so that was what I literally felt like, this spiritual warfare. And it is so real not to scare you guys, but that's again, we're like, wow, you have to be super.
Hared armour of God, be aware of it and just know, like how to be careful, like what doors you're opening. Oh my gosh, that's crazy. I had no idea. Thank you for sharing that. And if you if you want to set it out, that is I've experienced the did I tell you about when I would be sleeping and I and I would feel this like his presence and it felt like the second it's only happened twice, but the second time it happened, I was being physically shaken like I wasn't moving.
But it felt like real soon. Yes, I've literally I've had that. But it's like a demonic force and I don't know what it was feeding off of and I haven't had it since. Thank you, Lord. But I knew immediately I was like I tried to say Jesus and I couldn't I couldn't say anything for like 30 seconds. It felt like two minutes. And then I said, Jesus. And it went away. But I was like, I literally can't believe.
And then I looked it up because I'm like, I don't even know you. I knew about that was because I'm pretty sure, like four years ago I was hanging out David Kotowski and she was like, I think it was like her some YouTube or was like, have you ever had sleep paralysis? I was like, what's that?
It's like when you're awake, but, you know, you can't move. You can do anything. What is that? And she told me everything that night.
I go, Oh, I got some spirit, did not die that night. And I was like, this is so scary and real. It's the most terrifying. You're lying there, you can't move. And I was like, oh, my gosh, jeez. It's like trying to get Jesus to come back. And obviously, like, when you say Jesus, they have to leave like we have power dominion over them. But that night it happened.
I was like, gosh, this is so freaky. Like, you know, it was a long time ago. Yeah, it was. I think was like four or five maybe. Or at this point. Yeah. Crazy about. Yeah. What's so cool is like there's a I think it's in Luke, it says we have power. What is it. This is burse. We have the power to tread on scorpions and serpents. And I just I literally say that verse too.
Sometimes when I feel like afraid or if I'm walking alone at night I'm just like no one can touch me.
No, no weapon formed against you shall cross. Oh yeah. That's my favorite. I'm like, yes, like I like a good one.
That's a good it's a good one and it's crazy to how I feel like we don't even realize even with media like you can open the door of like spiritual things. We were talking about this with like scary music videos.
So much like power and what you like. Yeah. Like, I mean, girls, bodies, anything. OK, so when I was very like in the world and just didn't really realize the effect that had on me, it didn't bother me. But now that I like I think I put to my new year like now that it bothers my spirit, like I can't watch it. I'm like, well, I guess I'm like sick. I'm like, oh, well, I completely agree.
It's just like that's what the gospel is meant to do. It's it's meant to convict you and make you feel that disturbance in your spirit. You're like, yeah, this feels wrong. And I just know it's wrong. Yeah. Yeah, I do that. Exactly. Wow.
Guys, it's crazy for you to look at.
What else could we talk about really.
Eighty. Eighty. Oh no. Yeah, we should update them on that. Do you guys have dates.
Oh we celebrate else.
Oh yeah. OK so. Right let's let me think. I want to know.
OK, so you guys and this is Meredith by the way, in our past episodes we talked about just past relationships with guys. And you guys know, I've never actually been in a real relationship, but I dated like this one guy two years ago and I thought that I had completely forgiven him in my heart. I thought I was like healed and just really over it. But I saw him on the beach like a couple of nights ago with my mom.
I was walking and I saw him and I pretended that I didn't see him because I didn't think he saw me. So I was just like, I'm just going to try to walk. I literally said to my mom and he goes, he goes, Hey, guys. And I literally I couldn't look, I couldn't I saw his face. I couldn't look him in the eye. I kept walking and I just go, Hi, are you my mom is like, are you OK?
Like I what is going on? And I prayed about it and I was thinking about I'm like, have I like, really gotten have I forgiven him completely. Like what what's going on in my heart. Because I was like Lord revealed to me like what is going on, is there something I need to work on? And I just had just some revelations that I don't want to get too into it. But I just kind of realized that I wasn't really I know I had forgiven him, but I think just seeing him almost triggered something in me.
And so I just prayed about it. And I actually came to the conclusion that I was I may cut this out. I came to the conclusion that I was he emotionally abused and manipulated me. And I don't even know if I want to go into this. I kind of do because I honestly feel like so many girls have gone. So I'm like, OK, I'm just going to say it. This person is a good person. And they didn't I don't think they meant to hurt me, but they.
How did I say it to them? It's. Since I said that he so I put up boundaries with this guy that I was dating and when I told him what my boundaries was, he was already planning the future with you and manipulating you. He loved me, which is when people like like show so much affection before you're like really in a relationship.
And then he kind of he he manipulated my boundary by saying, OK, well, then let's just date. If you're not willing to do this before you're in a relationship, why don't we just start dating?
And then the moment I said yes, I use that as an excuse to just do what I the boundary go past that boundary. And it just showed that he didn't respect that boundary. And I felt so bad after I did what I did that I was like I like I couldn't even look him in the eye. That's why I couldn't look at him, because I was so hurt by that.
And it triggered like this this just kind of like feeling of not like anger, but just almost like, I don't even know bitterness.
I don't know. I just feel even though I'm like I'm resentment. Yeah.
I guess it's important to talk about that because the amount of girls that have gone through that thing is when you're in the moment, you have no idea that's how. But it's like emotional. You're just like I like him. Like, you know, if he really says he cares about me like he says he does, then he wouldn't he wouldn't do that. Or like he really does care about you because he's told me. And I think that's where we have to guard our hearts ten times more because we're believing what they're saying.
And it's like, no, no, no. Let's look at the facts over feeling. Yes, ma'am. And the heart is deceitful above all else. That's a really important thing that I think we don't like. Think about a lot of accountability, so I'd like to have each other. Yeah, OK. What do you think about this? Yeah. Should I do this because our class is just like, oh, but I want the attention or I want like just, you know, have that feeling.
But deep down you're like I know about this person isn't for me and I can't just be with that guy just because I'm lonely in this season. And, you know, deep down they're not the right guy. Yeah. So I just wanted to talk about this, like, all the way over here about, like, trusting your gut because like ninety nine ninety nine point nine percent of the time, like as females, like our women intuition always.
Right. You freaking know whether you want to admit it or not, your body and your spirit knows. So to me going forward, I'm like, I'm forever going to trust my gut. Yeah. Because you probably knew he was maybe higher. Yeah, I knew deep down. And I had so many previous experiences with him where I would leave his apartment in tears, I would go in an Uber and I was sat, I was like crying.
I was like, why might what's going on? And I knew it was the Holy Spirit at the time. Like being like, like I knew God was like, don't ever go back there. Like, I don't want you around him. But he seemed like such a nice guy. But I just didn't know because I was treated so poorly in the past that this seemed like such a it seemed like such an upgrade. But I didn't even realize that he was still not respecting me.
And the girls will always run back to what's familiar. So that was like the treatment was familiar to you, that it seemed comfortable like this. That's good. Yeah. You know, and I mean, that's why a lot of girls just repeat this and girls like he loves me, he loves me. But it's like they don't realize that and they're done that it's worse.
Yeah, it's emotional abuse and it's not OK. Know, are you dating anyone? No, wait. I saw your insurance. So you said you're single.
I'm single, but I am going on a date on Thursday with you. I'll cut this out. He's cute. That's awesome. We love to see it. I know.
And I'm kind of like, what are you guys doing? Or is he surprised? He surprised me. He called my best friend Sarah and he was like, what kind of wine does she like? Like salad, all the information. But I don't know. We love it for. No, there's just one involved, that's all I know. Oh, I'm so excited, I'm like, okay, whatever.
Are you one girl, particular girl? I love to kill anyone. We need to talk about alcohol because for tequila. But then it's like dangerous. It's very dangerous, but it's so dangerous. The other a week ago, I went to a family friend's house and around this area and I told myself, I'm like, I'm not going to have anything to drink. And then because my social anxiety, I know that drinking makes me looser and makes me more comfortable.
I knew I was like, I'm just going to drink. I'm just going to I want to let loose. So I had one margarita. And because I'm such a lightweight, I got like I was OK. I didn't act drunk. Apparently my parents were like, you seemed fine, like you weren't drunk at all. But inside I knew I was like, you were feeling good.
I was I was so different. And I was like, I know I'm abusing it because I did it because I was using it as a coping mechanism.
So, yeah, I haven't done that to you. It's hard. It really is. But I'm like, oh, it tastes so good. And you're like with your good friends in your space and like you're just having fun and then but you'll make some poor decisions. I've made some very, very bad decisions.
Tweet, sister, read, tweet.
It's nothing compared to what I. Oh no, no, that's not true. I believe we got to done some stupid stuff. The law to do with me, baby Jesus working on merch.
And then yeah I have this community called the ABI Tribe, which is for girls to find community in their cities, but also just online, especially with covid. It's like you can't find friends right now. So this is like your way of like virtually finding friends in so many girls have been like set free from things during it. Like it's been really amazing. Like girls have gone in there and been so bold and have been like, hey, I'm struggling with pornography.
I'm sure I love masturbation. And it's like we've talked about this, about pornography and uh oh, Youlden whole episode that no, we want to know should and you should bring Riley on. Yeah. That's what we're gonna do. Yeah. So that's what I've been working on. I assume it's emerging that we.
Yes. We love it. So that is it for this episode.
Thank you so much, Janine, for coming on having me. I appreciate it. Thanks for listening, guys. And we will talk to you in our next episode. Bye. And really watch what I say and what I think.
There's a verse in Proverbs. It's Proverbs eighteen twenty one. Death and life are in the power of the tongue. So I've realized that a lot of what I say, if I'm saying something negative, then I'm going to start that's going to start seeping into my life and it's just going to feed on that negativity. So the more I'm positive in the more I'm speaking life into things that's going to show in my life and be the fruit.