Recently, I experienced a flare up of my old Lyme symptoms. One doctor told me years ago that I no longer deal with active disease, just its residual effects. I have daily joint pain and occasional neurological flare-ups. I've come a long way in my healing and health since those sick years, and my struggle through that valley has left a lasting imprint on my heart.
On one hand, I took countless spoils from that battle. My trust in God has deepened over time. I now understand how fragile and fleeting this life can be. I'm quicker to see things from an eternal perspective.
However, I also carry with me the baggage of fear.
Crawling through that valley—battling sickness and the financial hardship that accompanied it, all while trying to care for three little boys—sent me in a tailspin of fear. Even now, with my kids grown and a full plate of ministry duties, I pick up fear when remnants from my past reappear.
Can you relate?
So during my recent flare-up of symptoms, I cried out to God, "Oh, Lord, I long for perfect and total healing so I will no longer fear sickness and disease!" And just as quickly the Lord spoke these words to my heart:
"What makes you think that once you're healed completely, you won't struggle with fear of sickness and disease? These are two separate things. I've equipped you to take on the fear, so slay that dragon. And entrust your health, and all of your cares to Me. I will sustain you."
Talk about a light bulb moment!
Think about how the enemy works. When he attaches fears to our concerns, he backs us into a corner until we feel helpless and powerless to do anything about our circumstance.
For me, when fear rises up because my face has gone numb, I want to panic because I can't make my symptoms go away. But when I separate my fear from my health and decide I can do something about this fear, I take the power away from the enemy and begin to see my circumstance with greater clarity, even peace.
In Luke 10:19 Jesus tells us that He has given us authority over all the power of the enemy. He's given us authority. So we need to take authority.
Jesus wants us to entrust our concerns to Him, for He cares for us.
But He's also equipped us for battle. Over and over Scripture gives us this charge: Do. Not. Fear.
Pay attention next time you feel stirred up in fear because a current circumstance mirrors a past pain or hardship. Maybe it's your marriage, your finances, your sense of identity and acceptance. Maybe it's your job. Where do you tend to feel weak, vulnerable and unsettled? Step back, pick up your shield and sword (See Eph. 6) and slay that dragon of fear!
Cast your cares on the Lord, for He will sustain and strengthen you.
Then, simply do the next thing He tells you to. He'll get you where you need to go. Just walk boldly and confidently forward in faith.
Overwhelming victory is yours because you belong to Him.
"For God has not given us the spirit of fear, but of power, and love, and self-control" (2 Tim. 1:7).
Adapted from Your Powerful Prayers by Susie Larson, 2016. Used by permission of Bethany House Publishers, a division of Baker Publishing Group.
Susie Larson is a popular radio show talk host, national speaker and author. Susie has a passion to see women and men everywhere strengthened in their faith and mobilized to live out their high calling in Jesus Christ. More at susielarson.com.
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