Every since I was a child, I suffered with extreme anxiety because of the abuse that I suffered. (My childhood was one of hell. My father routinely beat the hell out of his children, yelling was his mode of conversation, and he had us doing cruel things—such as taking out every dish and pan in the entire house (we were a family of fifteen—I had eight brothers and five sisters—if he saw so much as a streak of grease on a glass or a fork had been dropped on the floor.) So, from an early age, I developed anxiety.
As I grew up, the anxiety worsened, as I was bullied and tormented all during my school years because for one, I was very poor. For another, I had a muscular build, so I was taunted and called He-Man and ugly and other cruel names.
As I continued to mature, the anxiety festered and followed me and I simply learned how to live with it because it had been such a constant part of my life. But there were times when the anxiety was so bad that I could not function. I could not get out of bed or go to work. I just lay in bed and quaked in fear and debilitating stress. I took medication for it, but it only lasted for a short time and after a while, it was like I was just taking candy.
In ’08, I began having panic attacks. (My husband had had me put in Pathways, the city’s mental facility) because I had attempted to take my life because I could no longer tolerate the excruciating chronic pain that I had been enduring. (I suffered from severe chronic pain for five years.) He put me there to protect me, but that unleashed that monster of anxiety and I was cataplexic (my limbs were frozen from terror and I could not move more than my eyes. I could not feel physical sensations and I went around shaking and jerking like I had the DTs (delirium tremors)) After my stay in the hospital (this was my first hospitalization, by the way), my husband brought me home. Life and the things around me felt surreal. And I was scared to death.
During this time, our landlord began harassing us and threatening to evict us. Now, this truly unleashed the monster within me because one of my greatest fears was losing my home and ending up on the street. That opened up a can of worms inside me and it was like a tornado of hell took up residence in my head and I could feel the chill winds of terror swirling around me. When I woke up, I immediately felt terror that I could not explain and it lasted all day long. I could barely breathe and it felt as though I was dying. Every day. Sometimes my husband was able to distract me and bring me out of the panic attacks, but most of the time I was on my own, with only my prayers and faith in God to get me through. So, I prayed and I prayed and I prayed. (Now, at this time, I knew absolutely nothing about spiritual warfare or that satan walked around like a roaring lion, seeking whom he may devour (1 Peter 5:8) I was tormented by the enemy because I did not know his wiles, lies, or schemes.
I thank God because He was my deliverer. One day while I was crying out to Him, He touched me and took that tornado of terror out of my head and I have never had another anxiety or panic attack, and I had been having them daily. I am so grateful, because those terror attacks (they went way beyond panic for me) had me feeling like I was dying every single day and I was unable to get out of bed or do anything productive. And now I am thrilled to say that I have not had one attack for three years. Medication did not do it. Psychotherapy did not do it. (I was in therapy for my childhood and adult traumas for years, all out of our pocket, I might add.) It was the love and the power of God that destroyed that tornado of hell out of my head and heart and I live in a state of great peace and joy.
Do I experience anxiety anymore, you might ask? Of course, I do. These are stressful days that we are living in and I am presently experiencing great financial hardship and face the prospect of losing our home yet again. But the anxieties are without me. They are no longer within. I have God’s Word to comfort me and give me strength and it works without fail.
So often, while I was in the throes of an attack, I’d wondered where on Earth was God and why was He allowing me to go through such torture. But I discovered that the Lord had been with me all the time and He is here with me while I type. I’d had a lot of misconceptions about God, so I doubted His Word when I needed it the most, and so it could not work for me because I was too busy believing the lies of the devil, who routinely planted suggestions in my mind and I fell for them hook, line, and sinker. It was only when I learned how to resist the devil that he began to flee from me. (James 4:7)
The Bible is not simply a collection of stories that you pull out at Christmastime. The Word is spirit and it is life. Life and death are in the power of the tongue. (Prov. 8:21). I had been speaking death and curses over my life by the words that I had been thinking and speaking. Because I was acting out of fear and not of faith, I was unable to appropriate the many promises of God and instead reaped a harvest of fear and torment. But, praise God, I’ve got the devil on the run now! “And you can, too.
Jesus said, “Have faith in God.” (Mark 11:22) It is impossible for God to lie. (Heb. 6:18) He is our deliverer and He is our defender. Most importantly, He is our Father. The Word says, “If ye then, being evil, know how to give good gifts unto your children, how much more shall your Father which is in heaven give good things to them that ask Him?” (Matt. 7:11) If you put your faith and trust in Him, He WILL deliver you. This is His promise and as I said, it is impossible for Him to lie. AND IT WORKS. My very life is a testament to that fact.
As I continue writing this blog, I will be expressing the thoughts and feelings that I experienced right along with the victories, so that you will not think that just a simple snap of the fingers delivered me or some magic potion altered the state of my consciousness. That could not be farther from the truth. There were battles that I had to fight and trials that I had to go through. But it was in those trials and battles that the victories were won. So, if you are going through difficult times, don’t despair. It is for your making, not your breaking. For all things work together for good for them that love God and who are the called according to His purpose. (Romans 8:28) Now, don’t get me wrong. If you are not a child of God, things are not only not working for your good, but there is a devil who is out to kill, steal, and destroy you. But Jesus came that you might have life and have it more abundantly. (John 10:10)
The great news about the Good News is that even though you are not living for God right now, He will still use all that you have gone through for your good when you turn your hearts and lives over into His very capable care. God stacked the deck so that it was impossible for you to lose, if you are His child. I dare you to try Him for yourself. I double dare you.:)