ALL IN: Betting on God to Break a Gambling Stronghold


Hello my Beloved friends!  It’s been quite some time since I’ve written.  So much has been happening and I have, quite honestly, been overwhelmed… and depressed.  I hate to complain…but I’ve discovered that there is some sort of inexplicable, healing bond that I share with my friends in the WordPress community.  Honestly, if you all could only fathom how much you mean to me.  

I sincerely love you people…and I know that you love me too because I can feel your love.  God can connect us to others in a plethora of ways.  I knew that.  What I didn’t know is that He can connect us with complete strangers, world-wide, via the darn Internet!  He never ceases to amaze me and I praise Him for the gift of your love and friendship.

As I mentioned before, I am now working (again) for a major airline.  It’s been hard and I have no idea how I am going to make it financially.  I have retained a bankruptcy attorney.  But, I should state, “I firmly believe in miracles.”  Further, I should state that it is going to take nothing short of a miracle to get me out of the depth of my financial ruin.  A little while ago I made my first call to a place that helps low-income people like myself pay their utilities.  My water was shut off and I need exactly $543.20 to turn it back on.  I am admittedly afraid and I feel like a loser.  I have always been able to give.  Now I am in a place where I can only receive and my pride has taken a hit. 

I could go on an on but what I really wanted to share with you and ask you to pray about is a situation with my boyfriend.  Our relationship has been painful to say the least.  There’s no denying that.  But something keeps me holding on to him.  I have prayed emphatically and asked the Lord to take the feelings of love that I have for my him away if He doesn’t will for us to be together.  To date, he has not.

Interestingly, my boyfriend’s mother is a minister.  She has written a book and operates a large outreach ministry that feeds the poor.  She loves the Lord more than anything you can imagine.  However, she enables my boyfriend.  And when I try to talk to her about “anything” regarding her son she flat-out ignores me or says something like, “I’m not going to get involved.”  Her ministry is also aimed at helping women who are hurting and suffering, particularly at the hands of domestic abuse.  She was abused throughout several of her marriages.  Of course, all the abuse ceased in her marriage to my boyfriend’s dad when she SHOT HIM.  Oh yes, you heard me right.  She “popped a cap in his ass“.  He was walking out the door to go and see one of his women (he had many affairs and left her alone most of the time with 5 children).  She decided she would not be left again and she shot him.  He didn’t die but the bullet still remains in his body today.

My boyfriend’s father, on the other hand, was a wealthy oil and gas tycoon.  I recently met him.  Let’s just say that he is no longer a rich business man.  Ummm…he’s a compulsive gambler.  He “lives” in casinos and gambles for a living.  For whatever reason my boyfriend, although he won’t admit it, worships his dad.  He told me recently that his dad has never told him that he loves him.  He also told me that there was only one time in his life that his father had ever been proud of him.  It was when he won a poker tournament.  Long story short, my boyfriend has developed one of the worst addictions to gambling that I have ever seen.  He lived in hotel casinos for over 3 years until he came to be with me.  He left his truck and his motorcycle in storage in a casino town right outside of Vegas and had been deeply upset about not having his things accessible to him.

With that, at the end of June, my boyfriend bought a one-way ticket back to the town where his “stuff” is.  This is the same town that his father “lives” in.  His intent was to get his truck and his chopper and drive back to Texas.  He has been there for 7 weeks, emulating his father’s lifestyle, gambling non-stop, and living in comped, casino hotels.  And sufficed to say, I have never witnessed him being as down and as hopeless as he is nowadays.  He is admittedly miserable and is quickly losing hope.  He feels that he is literally trapped in the hell hole he’s in.  

Recently he quit answering my calls and texts.  I panicked and boarded a plane to Las Vegas last Saturday morning.  I didn’t even tell him I was coming.  Once I got to Vegas I rented a car and drove about 100 miles to where he is now.  I just knew he was with another woman.  But, I thought to myself, “Why does he continue to profess his love for me?” and “WHY won’t he just let me go?”  Whatever was going on I “had” to see with my own eyes.  I have a hard time saying goodbye to others, particularly to him.  I love him so much.

So I just “showed up”.  I did.  And believe it or not, ALL my suspicions were put to rest.  He’s not with another woman.  And trust me, I did some detective work around the local casinos before he even knew I had arrived.  He loves me emphatically.  He just has one of the worst gambling addictions that I’ve ever witnessed.  Essentially, he is stranded there until he gets approximately $800 for gas money to drive home.  He doesn’t have it, and he’s never going to have it as long as he passes a poker table or a slot machine on his way out of the door.  My heart aches for him.

The last night I was there he had been drinking quite a bit.  This tough, stoic, bad-boy of a man was in tears begging me not to leave him there.  But I had to go.  What’s more, he expressed that he no longer had the will to live.  He was giving me his things and telling me that he would be my guardian angel.  He told me to be strong and take good care of the boys and that I would find a wonderful man someday.  He expressed absolute disgust with himself and told me that he was a bum.  He loves me.  He loves the boys.  However, he thinks that he has nothing to offer to us.  If he only knew that his love is enough.

I’ve been with this man for the better part of a year and have known him for almost 20 years.  I can honestly say that he has never let me into the depths of his heart like he did this last weekend.  I know him on a whole different level now and I am willing to walk through fire with him to get him to where he needs to be.  Of course, I can’t rescue him.  What I can do though is pray for him emphatically and without ceasing.

In his mother’s book she stated that God told her that her son would someday do amazing things for the Kingdom of God and that he would be a “mighty man of valor”.  He loves the Lord and has so many special gifts.  I think he actually borders on being a true genius.  No lie.  I am intrigued by his brain.

After his father’s departure and his older brother’s suicide when he was a teen he has been battling many demons.  And I believe that the more you are a threat to the Kingdom of Darkness the more you will be attacked by the Enemy in a ploy to keep you from achieving your maximum potential in Christ.

But friend, we know that nothing is impossible with Jesus.  He already has the answer and solution to my boyfriend’s problems.  My human mind can’t fathom what the solution could possibly be but God can supersede anything that I could possibly dream up.

I feel very angry though.  I feel angry with Satan.  He’s a piece of shit.  I hate him.  It’s one thing to attack me, but whehe attacks people who I love…that’s a whole different story. 

Friends, I am humbly asking you to please pray for my boyfriend.  Please pray against a spirit of depression and suicide.  Please pray that the chains of gambling that have him bound will be loosed in Jesus’s name.  Please pray for God’s Divine protection and that His will will be done in the life of the one I love.  Please pray anyway you can.  You can pray in a house, your can pray with a mouse.  You in pray on a plane, you can pray on a train.  You can pray with a fox, you can pray in a box.  I think you get the point…or shall I throw more Dr. Seuss rhymes at you to gain your full attention?

I’ll tell you something, I believe in the power of prayer.  It never ceases to amaze me that we will try so hard to carry our own burdens sometimes without soliciting help from God.  I mean, God is the Creator of the universe.  He “made” the stars that I love so much and He actually knows each one by name.  We have DIRECT access to him but yet we forfeit our lifelines sometimes in order to carry our burdens all alone.  I’ll tell you what… My burdens are so heavy that I am becoming physically sick.  I want to get out of the way and allow God to work in my life.  After all, he’s right there, 24/7 to help me…and YOU with our EVERY need.

So again, I am soliciting my prayer warriors.  I hate to mention my man’s name but in my heart, I would really appreciate you praying for him by name.  His name is Howard.

Friends I think this is a very deep, generational battle that’s going on for his soul.  He is a perfect, hybrid mix of his mother and his father.  His soul is in anguish and he need deliverance now.  Recently I prayed so hard for him that I fainted; this is how serious I think this battle between darkness and Light where Howard’s soul is concerned is at the present time.  

Please help me.  We need miracles…  Even if Howard weren’t my boyfriend, he is still a child of God.  We are all brothers and sisters in Christ.  Please pray for your brother.

And tell me, where do you need bold prayer in your life?  What are you holding on to that is putting a wedge between you and your loving Father?  Please feel free to share it with me and I will pray with full authority in Christ.

I want you all to know that I really do love you.  You really do matter to me…  Keep your eyes fixed on Jesus, friend.  He is our only hope in times like these.

All my love,


About Ava Elizabeth Wisdom

Greetings Beloved, I am a 41-year old single mother of two boys. I was a stripper for almost a decade and have lived the kind of life that parallels something you'd see in a movie. I not only partied like a rock star, I literally partied with rock stars. I stopped dancing in 2000 and began college when my oldest was 4. Shortly after turning my life back over to the Lord and beginning my academic career at the university, my precious mother, a former Fort Worth Police officer committed suicide. When I found her, she had been dead for 3 days. I did her hair, make-up, got her dressed, and had her nails filled for her viewing and funeral. In spite of my appearance and way with men, I have never been married. Rejection and abandonment have seemed to define me since conception when my biological father deserted my mother as soon as he found out she was carrying me. I am a recovering co-dependent with a heart so big that I have to be cautious so that I don't exhaust myself in focusing on and giving to others. I was a very angry child who grew up in a violent, dysfunctional home so I haven't always loved others from the depths of my heart. However, after the loss of my loved ones, I learned that time is fleeting and that you never know when you're going to see someone for the last time. So now, I am quick to love others and strive to maximize each second that I have with the ones I love. In spite of my sin and my struggles with men, drugs, and alcohol, my faith defines me. I could never deny Christ because at the times of my life when I had everything stripped away I could literally feel Him with me. I love to write and pray that this blog will inspire you and draw you closer to the heart of God. Ava Elizabeth Wisdom

14 responses »

    • You were inspired?? Oh my goodness! You have to tell me how you were inspired! I thought I was just complaining and begging for prayer!!! I can’t believe that I inspired you! You are precious! Tell me about yourself! What are you studying in college?

      God’s best,

      • I like how your posts are really honest, and you include your personal experiences and actual statistics. It takes a lot for many people to open themselves up. I believe you are a prime example of this. It doesn’t matter where you came from, but where you are headed now. You are aware of your faults and don’t try to be a “perfect” Christian, because I know there are some who act as if their whole life is together, but behind closed doors…I feel myself having trouble with admitting my past and shortcomings. God uses many different people and situations as vessels to show his saving grace and true power, and you are a prime example.

        About me: My name is Adriana and I am a fashion design major. I always believed in God but I finally decided to dedicate my entire life to Christ in April after being part of a campus ministry and wanting to distant myself from the typical “college lifestyle”- partying, underage drinking, etc. Over the next couple years, I am looking forward into getting involved with campus ministries and mission trips, and helping spread the word of God!

      • Adriana,

        You bless me beyond measure with your words. Sometimes I feel like I am “too” open… that can leave me vulnerable to “haters” (lol). Honey, I would pray that God would equip you with wisdom and a spirit of discerment. It’s good to have boundaries. Healthy boundaries allow the good to flow in and the bad to flow out.

        You have to be careful who you share your testimony with because, even with the best of intentions, some will use it as ammunition or gossip with others about your personal business. On the other hand, YOUR story might bring someone to eternal salvation in Christ. You have to pray for the spirit to guide you and to speak through you. But remember, your HISTORY is a part of your DESTINY! You should praise God for being there during the storms of your life and celebrate the fact that He had you covered even before you choose to accept Jesus as your Savior.

        I think that what you’re doing with your life is absolutely fabulous. I promise you can never go wrong with God. He is the only source of true love and happiness…

        If you need to talk…about anything, just contact me. I have made a “really” good friend on WordPress and I love this woman dearly…her name is Arlene. She is a furious, firey, unapologetic, bold prayer warrior. I encourage you to get to know her and follow her blog at Arlene has a lot of love and wisdom to give.

        Keep yourself surrounded with your Christian brothers and sisters. The secular world is full of slippery, slimey people who can pull you off track in the blink of an eye.

        Again, if you need anything, please say the word. And by the way, I think you’re precious. Let’s definiately stay in touch!

        All my love,

      • Oh my gosh…you just made me giggle. Things have been heavy lately but when I was trying to go to sleep last night I thought of something really random and hilarious…then I couldn’t stop cracking myself up…in the dark! Remind me the next time I talk to you to explain this!!

        You are such an amazing person and friend. I think maybe…in the future, I should fly out just to have lunch with you someday!! I’m serious!!

        I love you, Arlene! Thank you for your faithful prayers!

  1. keep praying that God Will Remove your boyfriend from your life if it is Not His Will, because i can tell you from experience, God Will Eventually answer your prayer, even if it seems to take forever. try asking God To Help you get to the root of those feelings so you can heal.

    • Yalanda,

      I don’t know why I’m just seeing your comment. I’m praying the same prayer. I am at a place where I can “no longer” tolerate my boyfriends behavior, but he still holds a very special place in my heart. I worry about him so much and just pray that He will surrender to the Lord. I tell you, Satan has him bound, that’s for sure. He’s a Christian, but there are so many signs of demonic operation in his life. I just want him to be healed and free in Christ. Not for me…but for him. I am unbelievably empathetic and it breaks my heart to watch someone suffer to needlessly. He is a tormented soul right now, and he simply does not have to be.

      Anyway darling, thank you for the gift of your prayers… They mean everything to me!

      All my love,

  2. Whow!!!!! I don’t know what to make of this. Just today, I was thinking how my life, yes I’m really Howard, was in the same position as your Howard. As I read through the complete passage and recognize the name, I knew that GOD was talking to me. Praise the LORD JESUS and you for giving me hope in prayers. I pray that the LORD will manifest all good things in your life including Howard’s life. It’s 12:12am and I am still wired with thoughts of JESUS being the driver of the vessel he created (me). Thanks and GOD BLESS YOU ALL!!!

    • Howard,

      You have “no” idea how God is using YOU as a vessel for ME right now!!! I have been so down over the past 24-48 hours that I had literally considered “checking out”; I lost my precious job Sunday night/Monday morning. I felt like the Lord had completely betrayed and forsaken me and I could “not” see a way out of it…particularly since I just filed bankruptcy and am struggling just to keep food on the table. I’m not kidding, suicide was seeming the only way out, but of course, I could not leave my babies behind. I have cried until my eyes have been swollen almost completely shut, but despite all my thoughts, death seemed like the only option.

      When I saw your message late last night it scared the daylights out of me. I thought my Howard had somehow found out about this blog and I thought he was angered with me beyond belief. But it was you! It was you showing me that I “do” have a reason to live! It was you showing me that, indeed, the devil is trying to oppress me and keep me down because God has a divine, sovereign plan for me! See, through me, God helped you. And through you, God helped me. PRAISE HIS NAME, Howard!

      Howard, I don’t know what exactly is going on in your life, but you can darn sure bet that I’m going to make it my business to find out and to help you through it. YOU and I both mean EVERYTHING to God! Let’s engage in this battle and FIGHT for our lives! OK? And I want you to read a blog and make contact with someone that I know and love…. Her name is Arlene. She is a Warrior-Prayer QUEEN. I know her through WordPress but she is my SISTER and I have grown to love her tremendously. Her blog can be accessed through the Blogroll on my page. The name of her blog is “Armored Up”. Please make contact with Arlene so she can pray for you. Her prayers are high-dosage… And she shines the light of Christ like you couldn’t even imagine.

      That’s what this whole Christianity thing is all about. We are a body of believers who hold eachother up and pray…no, INTERCEDE for eachother when we are feeling weak. THANK YOU, HOWARD! I am about to drop to my knees and pray for you right now. Let me hear back from you.

      All my love,

  3. I signed up just for you! I was googling around and accidently found this website. Just wanted you to know you have my prayers.

    Hows your situation going?
    Have you tried spiritual solutions?

Share your thoughts with me.

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