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How can hurting parents whose children are in bondage to all types of damaging behaviors and addictions, mental health issues and more, be free from all that steals their peace and joy? Is there a freedom song for them to sing?

What do these parents need to be freed from?

They need a release from the painful emotions that destroy their mental and emotional health, robbing them of their sanity: fear, anxiety, guilt and depression, among other things.

They need to find their independence; to no longer be tied to the condition of their children for their own well-being.

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My Freedom Didn't Come From This

Personally, finding my freedom didn't come from doing more: trying to fix my daughter, lecturing her, helping her succeed or taking her to more rehabs.

My release also didn't come from more worrying, yelling, crying, reading self-help books or talking to counselors. Though talking to a counselor certainly helped because I needed to express my feelings to someone who could help me sort through them.

Freedom Came from Something Else

My freedom came from something unexpected. It came from four things and a special prayer:

1. Yielding to God more.

2. Surrendering, trusting, giving my daughter back to Him more.

3. Releasing her into His caring, loving hands repeatedly.

4. From remembering something I'd lost sight of: that while I loved my daughter immensely, God loved her even more. Far more.

After all, He's the one who made her, placed her in my womb and gave her to me. Yes, I was part of the process, but He was the divine source of her life.

Yield and Surrender

When I say "yield and surrender," I don't mean I gave up or didn't care.

I let go and let God do his healing work.

I stepped back and let Him step in.

I stopped enabling and over-helping.

I focused on taking care of myself and let my daughter learn to take care of herself.

I read the Bible more and prayed more.

A special, powerful prayer that led me toward freedom is "Declaration of Release" written by Sylvia Gunter (The Father's Business). Use her words as your own, as often as you need. Sylvia's petition was powerful for me. I believe it can help you, too. Let this anointed prayer become your freedom song.

Declaration of Release

Because Jesus Christ is my Lord, I free you from my anxiety, fears and control. I trust the Holy Spirit to lead you and show you the way that is right for you—the way of love, joy and peace and all that salvation includes.

I place you at God's throne of grace. I cannot force my will on you. I cannot live your life for you. I give you to God the Father, Son and Holy Spirit. You are a very special person. As much as I love you, God loves you more. Your life today is totally in His hands, and I trust Him with it.

In Jesus' name ...

I release you from my expectations,

I place you on open palms to the Lord,

I give you my blessings,

I let you go. Amen.

"For God is the One working you, both to will and to do His good pleasure. I am confident of this very thing, that He who bean a good work in your will perfect it until the day of Jesus Christ" (Phil. 2:13, 1:6).

Prayer Portions L 1991. 1992. 1995. Sylvia Gunter. P.O. Box 380333, Birmingham, AL 35238 USA. All Rights Reserved.

Dena Yohe is the author of You Are Not Alone: Hope for Hurting Parents of Troubled Kids (2017). Co-founder of Hope for Hurting Parents, she is a blogger, former pastor's wife and CRU affiliate staff. She and her husband, Tom, have been guests on "Family Talk With Dr. James Dobson," "Family Life" with Dennis Rainey" and "Focus on the Family" with Jim Daly. A proud mom of three adult children, she loves being Mimi to her grandchildren. Find out more at HopeForHurtingParents.com.

This article originally appeared at hopeforhurtingparents.com.

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