I have been in that same pit before, but this time I thought that I knew better. I thought I was victorious over fear. I thought fear could not hold me captive again.
How very wrong I was.
It started by a very small thought. Then, I expressed this thought to a couple of people. Then, I turned this thought over in my head day and night, night and day.
Then, I started googling this thought. As you all know, google is a terrible place to look for something out of fear and desperation. Anyone been there? Ever had a sick child and googled their symptoms? Yep, full blown anxiety attack.
When we are in a place of captivity, we turn inward. We secretly think things and act on impulses that are completely irrational and against our faith nature.
We rely on flesh.
The last place we often turn is to the Word of God.
We think to ourselves, "I don't need scripture, I need an answer."
We look for peace and assurance in all the wrong places.
I imagine God is looking down thinking, "Daughter, you know you won't find the answer there. Come to me. Come to me, weary girl."
Often when we find ourselves in captivity, we are blind and deaf to the Lord. Sin separates us form Him. [Isaiah 59:2]
I remember thinking in this deep well of fear that I could not even remember what peace felt like. It felt so far away. I even blamed God for letting me get this far into the well of fear.
My own choices led me there. I chose to not take my thoughts captive to the obedience of Christ. [2 Corinthians 10:5]
I chose to go my own way.
I chose to listen to the world and the lure of google to give me an answer for my worries.
God didn't push me away, I pushed away with the help of an enemy who roams around like a roaring lion looking for someone to devour. [1 Peter 5:8]
Here's the thing..
I know better.
I have been down this road more times than I want to remember.
I knew not to take the dark paths that lead to fear.
But, my flesh desired more. More answers. More information.
Remember what finally got Eve to bite the piece of fruit in the garden? It was her desire for more. She wanted to know more. She wanted to have full knowledge.
I wanted the same thing.
The world will never, ever, fulfill us. The world and its answers will only make us crazy, fearful, and empty.
We must turn to God when we find ourselves on the brink of any kind of captivity.
This is why the enemy loves when we fall into dark wells of captivity:
- We turn inward.
- We cease praying.
- We cease reading God's Word.
- We turn away from friends and family in our shame.
- We do desperate things in order to fill the sin craving.
- We cease being able to use our gifts to minister to others.
- We cease to serve others because we are self-consumed.
Only God can save us. Only God can wash us over with peace. Only God is our refuge and our strong tower. [Psalm 61:3]
The world will suck us in and it will feel like we are stuck on the spin cycle of a washing machine.
If you find yourself in this place. Stop. Immediately.
Go straight to the Father and repent of your sins.
Ask Him to give you the strength to stay away from things that will lead you straight back into the black well of captivity. You know the things that tempt you. You know them well and so does your enemy.
I can tell you with all honesty and truth that God will help you. He will rescue you. But, you must be willing to turn away. You must use the strength He gives you to walk back to Him and His Truth and Peace.
His Life Line is always there. Always. You just have to reach for it.
Coming out of the fog of fear, I look back and cannot believe how I fell again. I know better.
However, our enemy is relentless and he doesn't miss an opportunity to tempt us. Often when we are weak, stressed, vulnerable....is when he strikes.
Be alert! Be on guard! [1 Peter 5:8]
Clothe yourselves daily with scripture. Do not give the enemy an opportunity to trip you up. Put your armor on before the attack comes.
Put on the full armor of God, so that you can take your stand against the devil’s schemes. For our struggle is not against flesh and blood, but against the rulers, against the authorities, against the powers of this dark world and against the spiritual forces of evil in the heavenly realms. Ephesians 6:10
Don't ever be fooled enough to think that you are so far along in your faith that you cannot be tempted right back to that place of captivity.
Paul tells us to not boast in ourselves, but to boast in Christ alone.
Therefore, as it is written: "Let the one who boasts boast in the Lord." 1 Corinthians 1:31
We must be intentional about waking up every morning and inhaling God's Word just as much as we like to inhale our coffee. We must be intentional about praying as much as we like to browse social media. And, we MUST be alert to the things around us that the enemy is using to trip us up. We must open our spiritual eyes and keep them open every single day.
The enemy is not just out to destroy us...he is out to destroy our husbands, our children, our families. Make no mistake about that. You are not spared. Be ready to take your stand against his schemes.
The good news is, we will always be victorious with God on our side. We cannot lose.
What, then, shall we say in response to these things? If God is for us, who can be against us? Romans 8:31