Blog post by Brandy Edenfield
I Love Matthew 6:34: “Therefore do not worry about tomorrow, for tomorrow will worry about itself. Each day has enough trouble of its own.”
[click_to_tweet tweet=”‘If I’m real with you, worry is a struggle for me. Not just “worry” itself, but also, it’s the “sister struggles” that partner with it – ‘fear & control’. ” quote=”‘If I’m real with you, worry is a struggle for me. Not just “worry” itself, but also, it’s the “sister struggles” that partner with it – ‘fear & control’. ” theme=”style4″]
Fear has been the greatest tool of the enemy in my life for as long as I can remember, specifically the “what if” fears which invite worry. As a little girl, I remember being very fearful of getting lost or left somewhere. I tried to control this fear by staying close to my parents at all times, even in our house. As a teenager, I had a deeply rooted fear of being disrespected or dishonored publicly. I tried to control this through aggression & defensiveness. As a young woman, that fear of rejection showed up in my life in the form of using people & rejecting others before they could reject me. I tried to control this by hardening my heart. My life was full of so many broken relationships. As a new mom, I experienced an extremely isolating fear of my daughter being harmed. Growing up in the north, I’d heard lots of stories about the racial division in the south, so in the first few months of mothering a bi-racial child in Savannah, Ga, my fear that she would be harmed took great hold of my heart. I tried to control this by staying in the house (doors locked & curtains drawn) for days. Add a husband & two more babies- fear & worry & my need to control grew. The “what if” fears were a constant for me:
- What if one of my kids get sick with a serious disease?
- What if one of them gets hurt while I’m home alone with them & I don’t know what to do?
- What if Brian has an accident at work or on the way home?
- What if he decides he doesn’t want to be married anymore? What if I do?
WHAT IF? WHAT IF? WHAT IF????
Fear was CONSTANT in my everyday life. Thank God for Jesus, Murphy Toerner (my amazing counselor), Jan Hicks & CROSSING2FREEDOM classes. Because of them and their impact on my life, these strongholds were broken off my heart.
But don’t we know the enemy is a liar & schemer? Isn’t he relentless? In the areas I got free in, I became confident that those doors of fear were closed forever. So, he showed up in new ways. As God was opening doors professionally & in ministry, I began to have some new & powerful fears:
- What if I can’t do this?
- What if the gifts they see in me aren’t enough or maybe not real?
- What if being in full-time ministry costs my family greatly?
- What if they ask me to become a “religious rule follower”
The list went on! I began to feel deep insecurity & started focusing on all my “lack” rather than Gods power & promises. I got caught up in the trap of “performance”- trying to earn my spot at the table. More fear!!! And in the midst of this season- we faced the toughest season of our lives with one of our children. It was a fight for her very life & ya’ll… the fear in this season was nothing short of TORMENTING! The fear that I opened the door to robbed me of my peace, stole my sleep & kept my body in revolt. It was tearing our life apart! The more fearful I got, the more I worried. This depth of worry was projecting fear into the future so I was cursing the future in addition to fear in today. So, I grappled for control- any control. I became a drill sergeant; a helicopter mom; a tyrant.
In our darkest day- Brian & I CRIED OUT TO GOD– we yelled at Him, we challenged His character & goodness OUT LOUD! Why were at the ends of ourselves! TRULY!
Smack dab in the middle of this desert, God gave us a word- SURRENDER!Simple word, right? Sure, it’s easy to say, but SO HARD to walk out in real life.
We asked a God to show us what that needed to look like. And we actively fought for our peace.
- Verbally renouncing fear, worry & control from our house, our hearts & our family.
- We fasted.
- We were consistent in prayer, meditation & devotional each morning.
- We leaned into each other instead of trying to go it alone.
- We changed what we watched on tv & what we listened to.
- We prayed TOGETHER every night.
- We sought outside help from counselors, pastors, friends & even doctors.
- We talked about our struggles with real transparency.
God did what He does! He healed our hearts! He broke the chains of fear in my life! Is life magically carefree? NO! Is fear a distant enemy I no longer think about? NO! The enemy is real & he throws darts at my soul CONSTANTLY! He hates me & everything I love so he’s relentless in his efforts.
Here is what I can say for sure- God is bigger! He’s badder! And He’s tougher! He has good gifts like Peace, Love & a sound Mind for me. These are PROMISES! His promises for me & mine! These are GUARANTEES!!I can hang my hat on them.
So as Brian & I actively did our part, He, of course, was right there honoring us & giving us the fruit of His spirit! He took my fear, worry & control & He filled their spots in my life with peace, honor & rest.
“Heavenly Father, I come before you confessing all of my fear, anxiety, and control. I repent of the fear of ________________ and renounce it today. I repent of the idolatry of it and for the lies I have believed about you. I trust and believe you. Break the power of the tormentors over my life as I choose the path of surrender. I choose to lean into you and trust your highest best for my life. Help me Holy Spirit to learn and understand this path. Teach me what leaning and relying upon you looks like in this life journey home heal my heart and speak your truth.” – In Jesus name. Amen.
Life has challenges- but we can live a life free from the chains of fear & anxiety.
Surrender is the key to peace!