Kristine McGuire is the author of Escaping the Cauldron, in which she shares her personal experience as a witch, ghost hunter and medium. She recounts how ghost stories, Ouija boards, séances and other supernatural events had an influence in her childhood — piquing her interest in the occult. As an adult, McGuire slowly wanders from her Christian faith and embraces witchcraft — only to return to Christianity as a result of a paranormal experience she never expected. Besides being a writer, Kristine is a Biblical Counselor and training to be a Marriage Mentor through the American Association of Christian Counselors. She currently works with her husband Thom McGuire in ministry through Big Fish Ministries and is invited as a Christian speaker at faith-based, church, women’s and youth events.
What led you to write the book Escaping the Cauldron?
God put it on my heart to share my story when I began to notice the unprecedented interest in ghosts, mediums, and ghost hunting we have been experiencing in this country since 2005 and the introduction of “para-reality” television shows such as Ghost Hunters. I began hearing more and more Christians expressing an interest in the topic and curious if it was okay for Christians to participate in it. The more I noticed, the more God put it on my heart to speak the truth.
What was the most challenging part of writing this book?
I think the most challenging part was knowing how much to share. I didn’t want to inadvertently give people the idea that dabbling in magick or the paranormal is cool and I wanted to be sure God was honored on every page. The point of the book is to draw people to the freedom we enjoy in Christ.
What are the major misconceptions people have concerning the Occult?
I think the biggest misconception is that you can dabble and not experience some kind of effect in your life. There are always consequences when you dabble, even if they are not immediately apparent. The biggest risk is opening yourself to spiritual deception and believing or being drawn to things which God warns us against, such as consulting psychics and mediums. In a country where a horoscope is part of every magazine, it’s very easy to be touched by the occult and not even know it.
For those who are not familiar, what are paranormal events?
Paranormal events are experiences or situations which cannot be explained in the natural and lead the person to believe they are being contacted by a spirit being (usually considered to be a “ghost”). Unexplained noises such as footsteps, knocking, drafts where there shouldn’t be, scents which don’t belong, moving shadows, etc. The first thing should always be to investigate all possible natural explanations but occasionally there are none.
Tell us about your experience as a Medium?
I was what is called a “clairsentient” or “clear sensing” medium which means the majority of what I experienced was through physical sensation or just “knowing.” I sensed the presence of spiritual energy in a location and received information about that spirit. I would also open myself up to communication with the spirit being and receive thoughts, feelings, images, etc. to convey messages to others.
What is a Christian Ghost Hunter in the context of synergism?
A Christian Ghost Hunter is a person who believes that “ghosts” are human souls “haunting” a particular location (in addition to spirit beings such as angels and demons) and uses the same kinds of methods to track, record data, and attempt to communicate with spirit beings through paranormal investigation using digital cameras, digital recorders, and other various equipment. Many Christian Ghost Hunters see ghost hunting as part of a “deliverance” ministry. So basically, we are talking about Christians who believe in the paranormal and want to take part in investigating it.
Can you explain divination and its relation to horoscopes and tarot cards?
Divination is basically the practice of future telling using some kind of device such as runes (little stones or wood pieces with runic symbols), tarot cards, astrology and horoscopes (using positions of stars and planets for future telling), I-ching, etc. The person uses these devices to make personal decisions based on the “reading” (deciphering the symbols of a divination device) for potential future outcomes. Basically, divination is seeking to know the future outside of seeking God’s will.
Can you speak specifically about the dangers of the Ouija Board?
A Ouija Board is an occult device which is a kind of direct “all access” to the spirit world and is used to directly link spirit beings into communication with you. The specific danger is that most people think of a Ouija Board as a harmless game because that is the way it’s marketed. You can buy them in toy stores. However, this doesn’t change the fact that it is a very powerful and dangerous occult tool which should not be used for any reason because you open yourself up to spiritual deception…even if you use the board and nothing happens.
Why do you think Wicca and its practices lead people further from the truth?
Wicca is a religion and should not be confused with witchcraft. As Christians we understand that Jesus is “the way, the truth, and the life.” No one comes to the Father (God) except through Him. Any religion that doesn’t teach Jesus as the incarnate Son of God who died on the cross and was raised from the dead to save humanity from sin leads people from the truth.
What does The Bible have to say concerning witchcraft and the occult?
The “occult” is not specifically addressed in the Bible because it’s a generic term used to encompass a variety of mystical experiences and pursuits. Witchcraft, conjuring of spirits, consulting of spirits, sorcery, divination, mediums and psychics…all of these fall under the term “occult” and it’s all forbidden by God in the Bible.
What are your thoughts on the Harry Potter books and movies in relation to children?
I personally view Harry Potter as a fantasy tale along the lines of C.S.Lewis’s “The Chronicles of Narnia”. I believe parents can use the stories to engage their children in discussions about the nature of good and evil, do the ends justify the means, what is the difference between fantasy magic and true witchcraft, etc. I have more of an issue with books like “Twilight” which embrace a wrong view of love and glorify obsessive relationships.
What relation does the celebration of Halloween have with witchcraft?
Halloween as practiced by society today has nothing to do with traditional witchcraft (although it is a holy day for most witches or Wiccans).
What advice would you give to someone who is considering leaving witchcraft?
Trust God and be obedient to His word even when it’s uncomfortable.
What would you say to someone who is contemplating witchcraft?
Don’t mess with it.
Why do you think people are led to search outside the church for meaning?
I think it’s because we as the church have not effectively communicated what it means to be in relationship with Jesus Christ and don’t live as if we belong to God. We also tend to deny we have a supernatural God who does empower us with spiritual gifts. They see no power for successful living within the church, so they look elsewhere.
How can the church equip itself to confront these issues?
The first step is acknowledging there is a spiritual world and recognizing that as Christians we have spiritual authority in Jesus’ name. We trust in God by faith that He will direct and move us according to His will and that He will empower us to stand against the enemy (Ephesians 6) in all circumstances.
What other topics will you cover in future collections in this book series?
I’m actually planning to re-organize the book series into one book called “Escaping the Cauldron” which will cover the topics of Christian witchcraft (yes, there is such a thing), the paranormal (ghosts, mediums), divination, psychics, etc. Each chapter will include a short Bible study at the end. There will also be helpful things like a glossary of occult terms, etc. The hope is to release the book in September.
Tell us about Big Fish Ministries and what you do.
Big Fish Ministries is the dream God put on my husband’s heart to reach out to people who are on the margins of the traditional church. We are passionate for the ways of Jesus and want to be faithful to His teaching to love God and people. We are passionate about prayer, worship, and finding ways to express devotion to God through art and music. We want to inform people about important topics such as homelessness, marriage and relationships, the dangers of the occult, etc. Both my husband and I speak at church and ministry events (individually and as a couple).
How can people follow your work and ministry?
We have a website: bigfishministries.com. Currently we are trying to raise money so we can obtain our 501C3 and become an official non-profit organization. I also have a blog called Kristine ReMixed: kristinemcguire.com. I write daily about a variety of topics dealing with marriage, life as a Christian, etc. I have a newsletter which people can sign up for on my website and we will be starting one for Big Fish Ministries.
Thank you for asking such interesting and thought-provoking questions and for helping me raise awareness in the church about the dangers of the occult. Many people think because they are Christians they are “safe” from spiritual deception. However, we must always be on our guard and keep grounded in the word of God so we can recognize the subtle lies of the enemy within our culture.