Wednesday, October 26, 2011

The Mighty Grip of Fear

It’s going to get worse.

It was a deadly phrase that went through my mind recently. It tempted to lure my mind to join in on the ‘what if’ game. It finally found its opening to take over and I began to think about how bad things could really get. But on this one particular morning I believed it was no longer just a game. I knew the worst had come.
I uncovered my cell phone from the blankets on the bed. Four missed calls in such a short amount of time since I misplaced it. Upon reviewing the calls I discovered they were from my husband. As I hit send to return his call I wondered what was so urgent for him to phone me repeatedly.

Then I remembered.

The sirens.

The long and drawn out sounds of the sirens shortly after my husband left for work that morning.

Then I remembered the woman.

The woman I overheard frustrated because she had to pull off the freeway by my house to avoid an accident scene.

The phone rang. No answer. I dialed again. Still no answer.

I texted him.

No reply.

I emailed him.

No reply.

I went online to search for current freeway accidents. My screen glared back at me with accident reports and fatalities.

My head started to spin.

The missed calls weren’t actually from him. Someone else used his phone to tell me about the accident.

Oh God. This isn’t happening.

My body went numb. My head dizzy. An indescribable sensation traveled throughout my body. I couldn’t breathe.

I went and flung open the front door. I was desperate for a sign of hope. I looked outside to seek an answer. I looked for him. His car was gone. He was gone.

H e   w a s   g o n e.

No. No. This can’t be happening. I can’t handle this. What about my boys? How will I live through this?

Trembling I called a friend. I couldn’t form words.

“Breathe” she said.

I cried. Fear was holding me.

She prayed. I breathed.

The other line beeped.

It was him.

Safe and sound.

None of it was real. There was no accident. It never happened.

But it felt real.

For 18 minutes it was my reality. For 18 minutes I was a widow, single mom, and sole provider.

The words of my friend came back to me,
“The enemy is trying to trip you up.”

Oh God, not again.

Fear is real. It is a stronghold with a mighty grip. When fear becomes a reality even for a few minutes it is overwhelming. I lived most my life with severe anxiety and panic attacks. Eleven years ago I sought help. God’s healing was a process and for the better part of this past decade I have walked in a freedom I never thought possible.

In my journey I have come to learn the same area of our lives we overcome by the grace of God are the very places in which we have authority to speak into others. By the power of God our own healing releases hope to another. Yet, I can not ignore that it is just as true that it is the same area in which the enemy will use to trip us up.

Why has fear paid a harsh visit to me recently? I don’t know. All I know is this: I will not return to it as it has hoped to return to me.

Not this time.

I will not return to a life riddled with fear. I will not give in to the threats over my mind. I will reach to the Light to penetrate the darkness.  I will grab a hold of Peace to shield me from fear. I seek my refuge in His truth, in His people, and in His promise of victory.

I will overcome. I will find freedom—again.

There is no chance of things getting worse. They can only get better.

Because His grace continues…

Have you ever revisited the places you thought you were “over”? What did you do? Did you retreat or seek more healing?

Here or somewhere…be real.
Share your journey.

*If you or someone you know suffer from severe anxiety or panic disorders please seek professional help. You don’t need to go through this alone.

Relevant Worship & Music

Overcome by New Life Church Worship

Overcome by David Nevue

Reflective Scripture

Do not fear, for I have redeemed you;
I have summoned you by name; you are mine.
2 When you pass through the waters,
I will be with you;
and when you pass through the rivers,
they will not sweep over you.
When you walk through the fire,
you will not be burned;
the flames will not set you ablaze.
3 For I am the LORD your God,
the Holy One of Israel, your Savior.
Isaiah 43:1b-3


  1. Yes I definitely have revisited a place I thought I was over. I think its normal to "retreat" sometimes though. Even if its just for "18 minutes". Sigh. But then...God.

    Great post by the way. My heart was pounding with each word I read. Whoa.

  2. Sometimes when I find myself revisiting a place, I am frustrated with myself because I thought I had won that battle. But then I realize that God has me right where He wants me, completely dependent on Him, and that's when I am reminded that for that very reason I have won the battle, I am victorious even in the midst of the enemy's efforts. Even in the midst of fear, my identity remains unchanged. Romans 8:15-16

  3. It will only get better.

    I choose to BELIEVE.
    For he is the great I AM.

  4. Laura,
    I am now going through a very healing, but hurting time myself. I am seeking professional help through this, but find myself paralyzed by fear, which I know is from the enemy. I get "tripped up" with them because they attack me from all sides, old fears from very old memories, new disappointments that stem from fear of rejection, the list goes on. But, I thank you for the scripture from Isaiah. I appreciate you and your bravery to relate your fears and share them with us. Love you friend. I pray that day of healing is soon in my future. Be blessed.