His assignment from Satan was to kill Pastor Craig Groeschel. Today he sits on the front row of that pastor’s church.
For twenty years of his life, Michael Leehan lived and worked for Satan. At age 33, he made a decision to serve the darkness that he felt had consumed his life, but instead of making things easier, it began a steeper downward spiral replete with ritualistic cuttings, blood sacrifices, jail time, job loss, estrangement from his friends and family, and actual murderous assignments from Satan himself.
Ascent from Darkness relates Michael’s gripping, real-life encounters, enslavement to the powers of darkness, and miraculous emancipation from the clutches of the Enemy.
For anyone who has ever struggled with spiritual warfare, addiction, depression, or hopelessness, Michael’s story is a bold reminder of the redemptive truth of the gospel that anyoneeven a soldier of Satancan be transformed and used for the glory of God.
Now a servant of Christ, Michael exhibits the power of God’s relentless love and offers readers the chance to experience their own ascent into God’s glorious light.
|Publisher:||Nelson, Thomas, Inc.|
|Product dimensions:||8.38(w) x 5.50(h) x 0.74(d)|
About the Author
Michael Leehan is an evangelist and minister, but he's also finally a free man. Once enslaved to the dark forces of this world he now lives each day in devotion and service to God through Solus Christus Ministries, a nonprofit organization that offers hope and redemption through the power of God's love, truth, and knowledge of his Word. This is his first book.
Read an Excerpt
ASCENT FROM DARKNESSHOW SATAN'S SOLDIER BECAME GOD'S WARRIOR
By MICHAEL LEEHAN
Thomas NelsonCopyright © 2011 Michael Leehan
All right reserved.
Chapter OneTHE EARLY YEARS
For we are God's handiwork, created in Christ Jesus to do good works, which God prepared in advance for us to do. —Ephesians 2:10
January 12, 1976 Edmond, Oklahoma
My best friend, Eldon Felch, had an apartment a few miles from my work, so when I got off around 5 p.m., I headed over to his place to hang out and knock back a few beers. I had four hours to kill before Eldon got back from his job at a local grocery store, so I did what many other nineteen-year-old boys would do: I polished off a six-pack. Waiting until 9 p.m. for Eldon to show up seemed like an eternity, so I walked down to a local 7-Eleven to pick up another six-pack.
As I walked to the store, pain began shooting up my left knee. I'd injured my knee playing football in a sandlot game, and my knee was wrecked. I'd had three surgeries already and needed another, so I had a bottle of pain meds handy. Popping pills to manage the pain in my bad knee had become routine; I had been doing so for about two years now.
I must have looked older, or the cashiers didn't really care, since neither of the attendants working that night asked for my ID. I took my purchased six-pack, left the store, and walked back to Eldon's apartment. The frigid January weather didn't help my aching knee one bit, so when I got back to Eldon's, I popped three pills—a full day's dosage—and washed it down with a fresh Budweiser.
I opened the last beer in my second six-pack around 8 p.m. and contemplated another trip to 7-Eleven. I checked my stash of pain pills and noticed I had ten pills left. I popped two more to brace myself for the long walk and the frigid night air. I lingered, sipping my last beer, waiting for the pills to kick in. My knee hurt, but the pain I was most trying to dull was the emotional pain of a recent breakup with a girl I was in love with.
Still lying on the couch, I took my last sip of beer. When I reached for my bottle of pills, it was empty. I don't remember taking those, I thought.
I tried to get up, but my legs felt heavy. I lay back on the tan couch and looked around the room. The TV was on, but I didn't hear the sound coming from it. A river of warmth rushed through me, and everything began to slow down. Better get up, I told myself. But when I tried to move, my feet were cinder blocks. My hands tingled, my face felt flushed, my heart raced, and I began to sweat. This is not good, I thought. I was in trouble, and I knew it.
I started to panic. I somehow mustered the strength to move off the couch but fell flat on the floor. I rolled on my side and tried to get to the phone on the kitchen wall. I needed help. I wanted to shout, but I had no voice. My head was clouded, and I struggled to breathe. But I had to get to the phone. I crawled a few feet, collapsed, then passed out.
When I came to a short time later, the room felt bitterly cold, but I still felt sweat gathering on my body. All my bodily systems were in overdrive, and I knew I didn't have long. I made it up on all fours, then to one knee, and began to stretch my hand up the wall. But, inches from the phone, I gave out and slid down the wall and lay facedown on the linoleum. I rolled over and stared at the ceiling. The room spun, my stomach churned, my heart was beating in my head, and my shirt was drenched. My body began to twitch uncontrollably. With rapid stomach contractions I gasped for air, struggling to breathe. Then the room went dark.
Scenes flashed through my head. I saw myself clearly as a five-year-old playing in my family's yard and talking with our neighbors, whose kind faces were lit by the brightness of the California sun. I recognized my mother and father, but they were moving away from me, and I couldn't see their faces. I wanted to call to them, but they were distant and out of reach.
Then I was at the beach, and I saw the face of an angry adult whaling on me for some unforgivable mistake. She held me under the salt-filled water until I took my last breath. I saw my tears and my fear and my helplessness.
I saw myself crying every night as I lay down to sleep. As a child, I had prayed to two statues, one of Mary and the other of Jesus, that were situated on my headboard. I prayed that they would rescue me from a life of fear and desperation I already found unbearable and from the emotions of fear and desperation that were too weighty for any child. I pleaded with the statues in the simple words of a brokenhearted child who just wanted relief. But relief never came. The statue of the sweet-faced woman, who I was told had the power to help me, did not. My cries went unheeded. The gentle smile of the man statue seemed to be laughing at me. I was alone and abandoned. One night after praying, I broke the heads off the two plastic statues, went to the backyard, and buried them in the soil of a nearby garden.
The next thing I saw was my body lying in an ambulance as it roared down Danforth Road on its way to Edmond Medical Center. I floated high outside the vehicle and saw the commotion that was going on inside as the medics attended to me. I saw the oxygen mask on my face and my shirt torn back as I lay unconscious on the white transport gurney. I watched my body jerk when paddles were put on my chest to jump-start me back to the world I'd just exited. But I didn't want to go back to the pain, to the confusion, to the loneliness and isolation. I saw fear on the medics' faces as my life began to slip away from them. Watching this scene, all I could think was, Good. It is over.
Then I heard a voice say to me, "Not yet, son. I have too much for you to do!"
I fell back asleep.
* * *
I opened my eyes to a dimly lit room. I was covered with a white sheet and a thin blanket. Am I alive? Where am I? I didn't know the day or time, and I don't think I could recall my name. Thoughts came to me so slowly. It was as if my circuits had been jammed and the synapses weren't firing. I felt a crushing fatigue as I tried to move my legs.
The back of my left hand had a tube inserted into it and white cloth tape bundled around it. There were electrodes attached to my chest on one end and to a monitor on the other. The room was warm and empty, save for a bouquet of flowers on my bedside table and a few get-well cards on the windowsill. I closed my eyes to rest. I had no strength. I'm alive ... but why?
"Michael, when are you going to come back to us?" I heard a gentle voice whisper. My eyes opened slowly, and I saw a young nurse changing my IV bag. The clock on the wall showed 2 a.m. The nurse had her back to me when in a raspy voice I asked, "Where am I?"
The nurse turned on her heels. "Oh, thank God!"
With tears in her eyes, she took my hand and held it warmly. She tried to get me to talk, but I had no energy. I tried to go back to sleep, but she kept talking to me and told me to stay with her. Then I heard her yell out for assistance.
I wanted to sleep so badly. My eyes closed. She shook me, calling my name over and over.
Then I heard another woman in the room. She asked the nurse, "Are you sure? It's okay. Let him sleep. Call the doctor on duty."
I heard a man's voice call my name. A bright light shone into my left eye as a hand forced open my eyelid. I tried to pull away. "Can I please get some sleep?" I muttered.
The unfamiliar doctor sternly said, "Michael, you need to wake up."
I struggled against waking because I was totally drained, but the doctor continued. "Michael, you need to stay with me. You've got to fight."
Through bleary eyes I looked at the doctor and was blinded by the large ceiling lights. I winced and shut my eyes.
A little confused and combative, I blurted, "Please turn those off." As the nurse dimmed the lights, I pushed myself up in the bed and then fell backward. Someone gently lifted my head and shoulders up as another placed pillows behind me.
The doctor asked me how I felt and asked if I was in pain. I told him I felt as if I had been hit by a truck, I was so sore. I asked him what had happened to me. Instead of answering my question, he asked me what my name was, who the president of the United States was, and what year I was born. I told him my name, but that was all I could remember. Tired of his questions, I pleaded, "Can I please just go back to sleep?"
"Sure," he replied. "Push this button in your right hand if you need anything, and your family physician will be in to see you shortly."
Again I woke to probing questions and yet another physical examination. My eyes opened fully this time to sunshine peering through the window. I felt much more awake and coherent than the night before. I heard the familiar voice of my mother saying, "Son, you scared me. Oh, I'm glad you came back to us!"
I turned to my right and saw my mother by my side. I looked behind her and saw Father Frances, the Catholic priest from her church. He greeted me and said he was so glad I woke up, that I had pulled a stupid stunt but God had forgiven me. My mom later revealed that Father Frances had given me the sacrament of last rites while I was unconscious. She told me that when I arrived at the hospital, my lips were blue and my skin was cold as medics rushed me on a gurney to the emergency room. She was sure she would never see me alive again.
* * *
Two weeks later, I stared out the window of the hospital that had been my home for the past month, overlooking the city several stories below. It was mid-February, and snow covered the streets and sat in large drifts by the roadside. It appeared to have snowed for months.
I heard a man say, "It was one of the worst snowstorms we've ever seen." I turned away from the window and saw my new doctor approach me.
"How are you feeling?" he asked.
I looked around the room, then back at the doctor.
"Good," I replied.
He looked at me curiously. "Was your overdose intentional?"
I answered, "I don't remember much of that night, Doc, other than being outside and then above the ambulance. I do remember being glad that I was somewhere else. I felt lighter. I felt somewhat at ease. I wanted to be out of this world and to stay in that place, wherever that was."
I paused, wondering if I could confide in him. "I also heard a voice, Doc."
He raised an eyebrow. "Oh? What did the voice say?"
"It was a male voice, maybe my dad. I don't know. He said, 'Not yet, son. I have too much for you to do.'"
The doctor scribbled something on my chart and then answered, "That was just your imagination."
* * *
A few hours later, I was riding in a car with my mom. We were headed home, my mind still muddled from an event that was now a month old, when my mom asked, "How do you feel?"
"I'm good," I said, tired of people asking me that question.
"The doctor said to keep an eye on you. He's not convinced you didn't try to kill yourself, son. Did you?"
"Dad is pretty upset, but I wouldn't tell him much. You know he doesn't know how to handle such things."
"Don't worry, Mom," I said. "I know how Dad is."
In my mind I cursed him. What a wuss! Dad is such a coward; he can't face any kind of emotional conflict. He can't even say "I love you" to his son who nearly died. He can't go to a hospital because it is too clean, too sterile. He fears doctors, fears women, fears conflict. He only thinks about himself. Don't think of your son, Dad! It might hurt too much!
Determined not to stick around the house long enough to talk to my father, I said, "I'm going to see Carol when I get home. Is my car still at the house?"
"Son," my mother said gently, "Carol broke up with you the day you went to the hospital."
My thoughts jumped to the last time I had seen Carol. We were intimate and sharing conversation. I walked out of her parents' house and was headed to work. Wait—did I? She was concerned about something. Why was she crying? My memory refused to stay still. I tried to remember the details of our last day together, but every time I pinned something down, another memory popped up and I had to rethink the whole situation. My mom's response shook me from my thoughts. "Yes, and you need to stay away from her. She's too young and doesn't know what she wants yet."
My mind started to once again whirl with justifications for everything behind my mother's heavy words.
Ah ... Mom just believes that because she thinks Carol is responsible for my overdose. She doesn't even know Carol. Carol knows what she wants. She's seventeen! ... Parents. Dad couldn't care less, and Mom pretends she does. All Mom cares about is herself—her gambling at the bingo hall, her smokes, and her controlling dad. How does she know what Carol wants? She's rarely even talked to Carol!
My mother pulled the car into the driveway of our small bungalow-style house. I noticed the yard still had melting piles of dirty snow spotting the yard and driveway. I glanced up and saw my dad open the front door and stand behind the glass storm door, awaiting my arrival. The morning sun pierced through the door and illuminated the can of Coors he was holding. It wasn't even noon yet.
"I need one of those pain pills the doc gave me, Mom."
"It's not time," she replied. "He said to not let you have another one till 2 p.m."
"Come on," I urged. "It's okay, Mom. One pill won't kill me. I have a bad headache."
After a sigh, my mom handed me the bottle. "Son, you are nineteen years old. I'm not going to treat you like a baby ... Here!"
"Thanks. I'm going to the car wash. See ya in a while."
"Aren't you going in to see your father? Besides, the doctor said you should take it easy for at least three or four days, so I'm not sure it's safe for you to drive. You were out of it for nearly two weeks and in the hospital for a month," she reminded me. "And remember, you have an appointment with your psychiatrist on Thursday. He wants to see you twice a week until he feels you are okay."
"Mom! I am in great shape. I just want to go somewhere, anywhere but here." I could feel anger rising in me as I continued. "I hate shrinks anyway. They don't know what they are doing. Dr. Knox is an idiot; I only tell him what he wants to hear. Forget him, Mom ... Forget this whole freakin' world! Why do you care, anyway? You never care about anything but yourself!"
I hardly had time to realize what was coming out of my mouth. My mom didn't respond to my outburst. She reached for the door and calmly said, "Well, I think you need to take it slowly. You need to get back into the groove. And you have to get back to work. Your grandmother called yesterday and said your job at LongBell is still there for you." LongBell Lumber was a local lumberyard where my grandmother had worked for more than forty years. When I moved from California to Oklahoma, she helped me secure a job there as a delivery truck driver.
"I'm sorry, Mom. I'm just a little agitated. I'm not a baby and am tired of the doctors and everyone treating me like one . . . This medicine makes me weird too. It's hard to think and talk. It's like it's slowing my mind down. Weird stuff, Mom."
"Well, the doctor said it can make you drowsy. That's probably what's happening, son."
"No, I'm not just drowsy. It's like I can't even think. I can't explain it. I feel like I'm not me anymore."
I reached around slowly and got a couple of bags from the backseat, a clear jug to urinate in—why did she bring that home?—the release papers from the hospital, a prescription, and some get-well cards. After gathering my stuff, I opened the door of the car and headed toward the front door. My legs felt weak. I still could not think clearly. It was as if my thoughts were not mine. I was thinking differently ... so slowly. It took longer to take in my surroundings. My mind seemed detached from my senses. I tried to walk the steps leading up to the door, but I stumbled. My mind was out of sync with my legs. It must be the drugs, I thought.
Excerpted from ASCENT FROM DARKNESS by MICHAEL LEEHAN Copyright © 2011 by Michael Leehan. Excerpted by permission of Thomas Nelson. All rights reserved. No part of this excerpt may be reproduced or reprinted without permission in writing from the publisher.
Excerpts are provided by Dial-A-Book Inc. solely for the personal use of visitors to this web site.
Table of Contents
Chapter 1: The Early Years....................1
Chapter 2: Turning to the Dark Side....................19
Chapter 3: Submission to Evil....................39
Chapter 4: Trained to Deceive....................53
Chapter 5: The Jailhouse Way....................67
Chapter 6: Deeper into Satanism....................93
Chapter 7: Black Shadows....................115
Chapter 8: The Battle Intensifies....................133
Chapter 9: A Mission of Murder....................145
Chapter 10: Near the End....................171
Chapter 11: Nowhere to Run, Nowhere to Hide....................191
Chapter 12: From Darkness to Light....................199
Epilogue: The Road Home....................219
Appendix: Surrounded by a Great Cloud of Witnesses....................227
Most Helpful Customer Reviews
In Michael Leehan's Ascent from Darkness: A True Story, he recounts his own early spiritual development and his eventual devotion to Satan. Having grown up disillusioned with life and religion, Leehan felt that the darkness should be exalted and decided to live for and serve Satan. As his life disintegrated and he became more isolated, he became addicted to the power that was brought about by the dark rituals that he conducted at night. This false power came at a cost; his relationships and career faltered as he delved deeper into ritual cuttings, blood sacrifices, and demonic encounters. When his girlfriend convinced him to accompany her to LifeChurch in Oklahoma, his spiritual battle would increase even as he turned toward God. Michael Leehan's Ascent from Darkness: A True Story is an amazing account of the turn from darkness to the light. Throughout the book, Leehan honestly reflects on his spiritual past, providing the reader with grim details of his descent into Satanism. This is no trip through memories past in an attempt for self glorification, however. He freely admits the madness associated with his rituals and encounters. He simply wants to offer readers the insight into Satanic worship so that they might understand others who are going through similar circumstances. Too he provides a unique insight into Satanism and spiritual warfare with which all Christians should be familiar. This book is truly a wonderful testimony to the power of God to turn all lives toward Him; it is a great testimony from a now faithful believer.
Where Halloween was just upon us, Michael Leehan’s life does seem like a scary movie. Having read Ascent from Darkness, I can honestly say my like has never been that extreme. When first starting to read the novel, the autobiography of a distinct period of time in Michael Leehan’s life, I was wondering if this was going to be a book of, how every so often, you hear of the worst criminals, jailed, and all of a sudden find God and become the strongest Christians. You wonder if you truly can believe them, or are they just good actors. And why did they have to go to such an extreme to do a 180° turn to the other extreme. Well, this is pretty close to that. It’s hard to believe many of these things happened – seeing shadows, hearing voices, having people in your life that actually want to pray and help you, and stick around even though they’ve witnessed extreme bahaviour and inexplicable events. i don’t think anyone in my life could have stuck around. There’s a lot of praying going on in Leehan’s life. It seems like he’s always stopping to pray with people. I’m sure that’s what saved him, but there’s a lot of it going on. I find that odd. as it mentioned too much that I think he’s praying alone and in groups everyday? Or does he do that, really? he novel certainly draws you in. He’s had a scary, but interesting, life. Hmmmm……….
I have just finished reading this book. I received it from the publisher Thomas Nelson Publishing in exchange for an honest review. Story is about Michael Leehan and how his life spiral out of control when he renounced God and go to Satan's Camp. There he act on behalf of Satan to wreck havoc on normal Christian lives. To be honest, this book spooks me. The way it is written was very scary. At least that was what I felt when I read this book. It's like reading the mind of a mad man. Like "seeing" how a man become so twisted and evil. I felt very uneasy when I read about the method which Michael used to mislead Church goers when he was Satan's disciple. Makes me think and wondered how I can I trust him now? He mentioned about leaving Satanic Bibles in the churches and things like that as a way to mislead church goers and plant evil seed in their mind. Could this book also plant seed of evil in the readers mind if their faith is not strong? Won't they feel tempted to get their hands on Satanic Bible just to see what it's talking about? Nevertheless, am glad Michael is back to the good side. What I can say is I can read this book but am not sure it's the right book for me. I am sorry but for me this book is worth 2 stars out of 5. However, please do not be deter by my review. Others have read this book and have given it 5 stars. Maybe this book would be some help to those who needs it. After all, God works in mysterious ways.
Michael's testimony is truly remarkable and has had a profound impact on my life. No kidding. I always knew and believed in God but I had never stepped up to the plate and completely committed myself to a true Christian lifestyle. After reading Michael's gripping story from darkness to light, my spiritual life has grown immensely and I know beyond a shadow of a doubt that it will continue to do just the same. This book has the power to literally change lives and I definitely recommend it as a must read!
This guy was at the end of his rope(literaly spealing) When God let him know he was protecting him and watching over him.This was thru the many prayers and love from his friends. God sees us in our struggles but we must choose him and trust him. Just as I was beginning to wander how much a person could take ,God save this person and made him whole.Praise the Lord! This is a book that is a must read. If you know a person who is going thru a spiritual battle, hand them this book it will change their life!
This book is about a man who is trapped in Satan's world and commands. His lost soul eventually comes in contact with God and God becomes his savior. Ascent From Darkness is a uplifting book. It is able to help you see a light at the end of tunnel when you think it is the end of the world.
I just read Ascent from Darkness by Michael Leehan. I have to say it’s something you are not prepared for. You might not believe in this but for anyone who is a Christian you know that there are spirits of darkness as well as angels of light. This book will throw you and open your eyes to a whole new world. The author tells you of his life dealing with spirits of darkness and how he finally got away from it all. It is a gripping true story that will have your hair on end and have you sitting on the edge of your seat. This is an eye opening book I encourage anyone to read. Especially Christians who are running LukeWarm. The style is easy to read and the story pulls you in. Leehan goes into explicit detail in this book but doesn’t reveal certain details about certain points, like the names of the demons he encountered. He will have you standing and praising God for what he can accomplish. He will get you on fire for the Lord. A book well worth reading. 5 Stars
This book will change your walk with god!
Ascent From Darkness by Micheal Leehan is a very intersting autobiography. It tells the story of how a devout Satanist became a warrior for God. Micheal Leehan grow up without a clear picture of the love of God. He was consumed with the question of evil. How can an all-powerful God let bad things happen? Micheal finnaly decided that God was actually both good and evil, that he controlled evil, and was responsable for all evil events. Following this twisted logic he decided to serve God's evil counterpart, Satan. Once he decided to follow Satan he did not look back for many years. His mission, from Satan, was to cause trouble in church small groups. He would go to the meetings, twist scripture, and sudce the weak Christian women then move on. He was filled with darkness. People who talked to him felt like they were talking to several people at once. He was possessed in every difinition of the word. Then, after years of fighting against God, he gave in to the saving grace of God. His to salvation was long in difficult but, praise God, he made it. The book is not a literatury masterpeice, but is seems to come from the heart of the author. I would be careful about who I would recommend this book to though. To a mature believer this book is another reason to praise God. But to an unsaved person it might arouse their interest in Satanic practices. But all in all I enjoyed the book and the message of redemption it told. I received this book free from Booksneeze. I was not required to write a good review.
Sometimes I forget the feeling of what it means to know and be with God. This book reminded me of that. Every chapter I started with the thought of "surely, Mike will find the light". I wasn't let down by the last chapter. Hit me in the feelers like someone was cutting an onion near me. Thank you, friend, for this gift for the world to read. Keep on, keeping on.
Mike's story is heart breakingly real. It is told with great honesty. My faith is strengthened by his testimony. He is living proof of how great God's love is.
Michael's first-hand account of his battles with evil compel us to believe that our God fights for us, that there are battlefields we cannot see with our eyes and that we cannot lose when we surrender to His incomprehensible love for us. Get ready to have your faith justified and your heart opened as you peer into a part of Michael's life that appears fictional. But, make no mistake. This is not fiction. This is evidence.
I just finished reading, "Ascent from Darkness: How Satan's Soldier Became God's Warrior" by Michael Leehan. When I was given the opportunity, through Booksneeze, to read this complimentary book I was unsure if should. However, after praying, I decided to read it and I am so incredibly glad! This book opened my eyes to the spiritual warfare taking place all around us. What I found equally as shocking as the battle for Michaels soul, was the fact that he lives in the heart of America. If evil can abound in the midst of what most know as the Bible Belt, Oklahoma, then evil is everywhere. It is right next to you and right next to me. The only thing stopping a massive tipping of the scales towards evil is Jesus Christ. Michael captures the reader's attention with his openness and honesty tempered with humility and regret. He does not glamorize his years of sin or mask the pain he felt while struggling to overcome a lifetime of depression and repression. The account of the events that transpired in the time leading up to Michael's acceptance of Salvation is touching. The struggle he endured while seeking truth, yet running from it, moves the reader beyond what mere words can describe. I highly recommend this book to anyone looking for an understanding of the depths Satan will go to deceive people. It is a book for anyone seeking truth, a book for anyone needing to know how far Christ will go to save a lost soul! Spiritual warfare is real and Michael's testimony is proof that both angels and demons are all around us.
Summary: "Ascent from Darkness" by Michael Leehan is a very dark, very deep, yet very enlightening account of Leehan's "ascent" from his practice of Satanism to his embrace of God and Christ's sacrifice. The majority of the book follows the darker parts of his lives, but testifies to the power of prayer as various Christians enter Leehan's life and pray for him and encourage him. Leehan's experience included death, suicide, demons, sacrifice, cutting, rituals, and much more. But a fight within him eventually led him to the Lord and freed him from the weight of darkness. Review: This book was an extremely intense read, like reading a mystery suspense thriller. I was on the edge of my seat wanting to know what would happen next. While I have always been critical of "spiritual experiences," this book convinced me of something I've always known: demons and spirits are out there, and they're battling for our souls, influencing people like Leehan was to manipulate believers for the worse. Leehan's writing isn't too explicit, but it's enough to emphasize just how real the spiritual battle is and just how prepared we need to be. It has certainly motivated me to surrender more to God and His Word in obedience and love. Leehan's testimony may be difficult for some to read. Aside from Satanism, Leehan slept around and treated people poorly. He even ended up in jail for several months, and almost committed suicide. There's a lot to relate to in his story, and it may bring up unpleasant memories or temptations. But it also ends with a wonderful admonition to follow Christ through all the ups and downs. It's a powerful read. Rating: 5 out of 5 stars * Disclaimer: I received this book for free from Book Sneeze in exchange for my honest review of it.
Description: Ascent From Darkness is the true story of Michael Leehan, a man who felt abandoned by God and turned to Satanism. Michael's whole life seemed to be submerged in a darkness he couldn't defeat, so he gave in. He had a loving family, friends that cared about him, and was brought up going to church, but no one seemed to be able to get though to him, especially after he experienced cult life and became "Satan's soldier". He goes through so much torment because of this, breaking apart his family, losing his job, cutting, suicidal thoughts, and an attempted murder; a downward spiral that almost lands him in jail and worse. Thankfully, he turns back to serving God before he loses his life, or takes the life of someone else. Review: I am a strong-willed Christian and a firm believer in redemption and forgiveness. That in mind, I knew that this book would be challenge for me because I was brought up with religion and I have never imagined not being a God-fearing Christian. Surprisingly, after the first chapter I couldn't put the book down. Michael's story both horrified and amazed me. It is unbelievable all that he went through and all that it took for him to get where he is today, faithfully serving the Lord. This is a book that every Christian should read because the devil is very real, and he is always trying to weasel his way into our lives, whether we recognize his influence or not. His story is gripping, heart-breaking, and inspiring. I believe I am a stronger individual and Christian after reading this. Overall, both style and substance were evident and appreciated. I recommend Ascent From Darkness to Christians and anyone who who wants to explore the real-world of God vs. Satan. Rating: Clean Getaway (5/5) ***I received Ascent From Darkness from BookSneeze in exchange for an honest and unbiased review.
Ascent From Darkness by Michael Leehan is a true story of how God transformed Michael's life, taking him from Satan's side to God's side. This book is filled with stories and experiences that will both surprise and astonish you. I highly recommend this book to anyone who wants to learn how "the other side" operates. It really challenged me to draw closer to God. I am a member of Book Sneeze by Thomas Nelson, I receive free books in exchange for reviews.
Every Christian needs to read this book. This is the story of a satanic worshipper who became a child of God. Readers realize that no human is too far gone, and that the love of God knows no bounds and turns no one away--regardless of how bad they've been. However, what I daresay is of more importance is understanding real spiritual warfare. I am glad Leehan is now a slave of Jesus Christ, but some of what he did in his possession is worth noting for us to learn from. He would purposely go to churches to start conflict; he would memorize Bible verses and try to mess people up with them; he would go to singles groups and look for venerable women to satisfy his lust; he would purposely try to break up marriages; he would burn pages of the Bible; he would go after those who seemed young both in age and in the faith; he would see spirits; he would hear demons; he communicated with the spiritual realm; he saw / felt hedges of protection around certain people; he could tell in Bible studies who was really seeking God and who was immature in faith; and the list goes on. What is most striking is that the forces of darkness can indeed enter "Christian circles" and pretend to be Christian to manipulate others. I'm not saying one has to be calling every single sinful person possessed, but I do think us as Christians need to be more on our toes (Matt 10:16). Things like blood sacrifice, spiritual influence, voices, and so much more are told with horrifying clarity. The book even includes eye-witness accounts from people who back up Leehan's story. Both before and after his conversion, Leehan comments about how little Christians know about the God they profess. Christians, please read your Bible and get to know your God. Church and devotionals are great, but God is bigger than the beatitudes and self-help lessons. Read a translation you understand and get to know what you are dealing with. Reading this book was hard, and when Leehan wrote of what God told Him, I started to cry. Some words on pg 211 include: "I created you. I chose you first. I will never leave you. You will never leave Me. You are in My hands; you are in My arms." While I have not been as in deep or intensely lost as Leehan, I can identify with a lot of what he went through in terms of possession, the dark side, spirits, blood rituals, and more. Like Leehan, the love of Christ grabbed me by the collar and did not let go (look at Job 30:18 and verses around it). The forces of darkness are real, and don't you dare think for one moment that you don't have to understand them. I'm not saying to go read every occult book or obsess with all that research; the Bible has enough in it (2 Tim 2:15). I personally feel a hedge of protection around me as I claim Zech 2:5 for the fire of glory around me. I heard God whisper He loves me (Rom 5:5) as I am flooded with God (Eph 3:19). Every day is a battle (Eph 6:12) but I stare at God (Heb 12:2). God protects His own, yes, but from the Book of Job, we see that God allows even the upright to be tested. It is my sincere hope that you will never have to see, hear, or come into contact with the dark forces of this world. However, I assure you they are real.
Ascent from Darkness How Satan's Soldier Became God's Warrior By Michael Leehan is an uplifting story that illustrates that the saving power of the cross can in fact really change people. As if the bible itself were not full of examples of changed lives: Saul who used to persecute the early Christians, and King David who repented after committing murder and adultery are just two of many examples. And for those who continue doubt in this modern day that faith has the power to change here is another story. No one, while still here on this side of eternity is too far gone to be born again and to make real and relevant changes- showing the fruits of the Holy Spirit. It is only after we have died, and entered eternity, when that choice is solidified and unchanging. As the bible says, now is the time to believe and now is the time to be saved. As a part of the booksneeze bloggers I recieved this book from Thomas Nelson publishers for the purpose of writing this review. The opinions expressed are my own.
This is a very well written book that tells us the incredible story of a man that hit the bottom on his life and was able to recover just by the grace of our God. Michael Leehan make a deal with Satan to serve and follow him because he was disappointed with his life and he stop believing in the existence of a true loving God. That decision lead to the practice of dark arts, that filled him with the sensation of having spiritual powers and he used those powers to disturb Christian congregations. Instead of bringing him worldly rewards, he found his life going down the drain and the diligent prayer of a group of Christians brought him to realize that there were powers superior to the ones he knew from the dark side. But the final touch was his encounter with God, when he was about to end his own life out of desperation. That encounter changed his life and the lives of those around him. This is a powerful testimony that should be not taken lightly. I recommend this book to be in the permanent library of all Christians and they should read constantly to remind them on the spiritual battle that happens daily in the spiritual realm for their souls. This book was written by Michael Leehan and published by Thomas Nelson in September of 2011 and they were kind enough to send me a copy for reviewing through their Thomas Nelson Book Review Bloggers Program.