It’s 1:30 in the morning. I should be sleeping since my little two-month-old bundle of joy will be waking up with the sun, but I’m not. I don’t know if I’m the only one, but God always seems to speak at the most random times like when I’m in the shower, fixing to go to bed, or even driving. Very rarely does He speak to me when it’s convenient for me to write it down, ha! Sometimes when I am writing blogs or even speaking I don’t know what I’m going to say next. That’s why I’ve never liked speaking in front of people because my brain would always freeze, and I would forget what I was saying and where I was going with it. That surprises a lot of people because I’m such a talker, but it was actually a fear of mine.
I would be leading worship and feel God speaking to me, telling me to share something with the church, but I never would because I knew myself. I knew that one of my downfalls was not being able to speak in front of a group of people. I was also scared that I would say something stupid and that people would laugh at me.
As a little girl I never struggled with being afraid . . . not that I remember anyway. I would go anywhere and do anything with anyone. I mean, I had sense enough not to get in the car with a strange man that offered me candy, but I wasn’t scared of anything. When I got older, that began to change.
I remember being engaged to my now husband when I felt that fear for the first time. But I’m not talking about a scared-of-the-dark kind of fear. When I was little I had a night light, and I always kept my door open. When I went to the bathroom in the middle of the night I took off running to my room as soon as I flushed the toilet like a bomb had just gone off. This wasn’t that kind of fear.
I’m talking about a gripping fear. It was different than what I had felt when I was little. I literally felt like something was squeezing me and wouldn’t let go.
I have never been one to share my struggles publicly because I never want to be viewed as a victim. I don’t want to be defined by my struggle. Truthfully, I had a great life with amazing parents who loved me. I grew up in church and pretty much had the perfect life compared to a lot of people. But I have learned that the devil can sneak in with things that you don’t even realize are a big deal.
I remember one day I was riding in the car with my mom, who is a great driver, but I had a death grip on the door handle because I was scared she wasn’t going to stop. That was the moment I realized something else was going on.
It is so important to stay in God’s Word and in communication with Him so that when the enemy tries to blindside you with something, you can recognize him quickly.
I went home that night and began to examine what had been going on. I started to recall all the different times when I noticed this gripping fear come over me. At church, at work, in my marriage, in my finances, and just everyday life.
What had changed?
Why was I so gripped with fear around every corner?
Why had I given place to worry in my mind?
I began to see…
My relationship with my husband was great. We had God first, we trusted each other, we loved each other, even on days when we didn’t feel like it, and we had great communication. Well, because of the fear when it came to money, I would freak out, and it would cause arguments.
At church, worship was going great. The music flowed so well and everyone got along. There was no stress or drama. But as fear would take over I wouldn’t say the things God was laying on my heart, even though I knew someone needed to hear them. It would only lead to guilt after every service, which would make me feel bad about myself.
I was always confident in the dreams God had given me and what I felt He had called me to do. When people asked me and tried to discourage me, I would stand firm and trust that He was working even when I couldn’t see it. But at night I would lay in bed, and doubt would creep in.
“Did God really give you those dreams or is this just something you made up yourself?”
“You’re just saying God called you to be different because you can’t stand to think you are normal like everyone else!”
“You have always thought too highly of yourself and that you were better than other people.”
These thoughts rolled through my mind over and over. It was like someone was screaming my worst fears about myself right in my ear. I mean could it be that after all these years of believing in a dream, it was true that it was all in my head? After all, I had yet to see it come to pass. I didn’t see any of the things God had promised me happening in the natural.
But what happened next . . . well, it’s my favorite part of this story.
I was lying in bed one night (see, I told you this is when God speaks to me) and thinking over those past few months of this gripping fear and where it came from and why I kept feeling like this and how could I shake it. This verse came to my mind:
“For God hath not given us the spirit of fear; but of power, and of love, and of a sound mind.” 2 Timothy 1:7
When I was a little girl, my mom made us memorize Bible verses. Oh, how I was so thankful for that on this particular night.
The spirit on the inside of me began to rise up, and I started quoting this verse over and over. It progressed from a place of just saying it to a place of declaring it with boldness. I realized that I had let my guard down and allowed the devil to use this to get to me. I say “allow” because, as children of God, the enemy has no power over us. But many times he strikes us at a weak moment or at times when things are going so well that we start to slack on what we once did when we felt we “needed” God more. That’s when he gets us with his tactics.
But praise the Lord that He NEVER lets His guard down. As our Father, He is always watching out for us. He sees the enemy coming, like a lion seeking who he may devour, as the Bible says. God begins to speak to the spirit inside us and warn us that something isn’t right. It may take us a little while to realize it, but eventually we do, and we can take action.
Now please understand that I know there are different levels of fear. I know there are people who have struggled with worse and for a longer time, but regardless of the circumstances, we serve the same God. And the same enemy wants us defeated.
So here I am, standing for those that can’t, and I’m telling you, YOU CAN!
You are bigger than the fear that grips you because of the God that is in you!
Take the Sword of the Spirit, which is the Bible, and cut the ties that bind you!
Declare God’s Word over yourself, and I promise, the thing that gripped you will begin to let go.
It CANNOT stand against the power of the God living inside you!
Whitney Dawn <3
“…perhaps you were born for such a time as this.”