Last month I was praying for my pastor and the safety of his family when the prayer turned around. God delivered a treasure I wasn’t seeking when I saw my pastor didn’t have any fear, I did.
Processing this with God, I never recognized how fear was controlling my decisions and prayers.
A history of traumatic events kept latching over me. It started with post traumatic stress and moved into post-partum depression after my kids were born. I was blind to the effect these fears were having on my spiritual life.
I latched onto a childhood event and a stronghold of fear took root in me.
This unhealthy stronghold had a big impact on how I raised my children, traveled on holiday, and communicated in marriage. Because fear is a strong virus, it was suffocating Fruits of the Spirit inside me.
And it’s contagious.
Examining my own history, I saw where seeds of fear were planted. It happened during a traumatic neighborhood event with a serial killer.
While processing the event through the heart of a child, I decided I wasn’t “safe” and learned to depend on my own abilities instead of trusting in God.
Every decision I made was processed through a fear-filter. If life gave me two options I’d always reach for the one with the least amount of danger.
In movie theaters. malls, and church I’d examine the room for an exit route. My highly visual mind had already mapped out my survival and how to protect my family. I survived a deadly airplane crash at the mall using this instinct. The pilot who died in the crash was a high school classmate and I was shopping at the mall when he crashed and burned several people in his path.
A circumstance that happens to a family member, friend or neighbor is not a fear designed for me. But my fear-based mindset was like a magnet and picking up fears like compounding interest.
Since praying for my pastor I’m walking away from fear. Don’t worry, I’m not going sky diving or something silly like walking on hot coals. I don’t need to prove to myself that I’m not afraid. My fears will be taken captive to Christ.
Looking back at my journey of fear, I learned to run away from danger and flee. Then I learned to wrap myself with a false sense of security. When I had children I started passing fear into the next generation with “helicopter parenting.” It was suffocating to be me!
The Man Who Put Me Under A Stronghold of Fear
Each time I write about this event it brings up nausea in me. Seeing his photos and reading his news stories trigger a vomit-reflex. My innocence was shattered, three of my neighbors divorced, and our small town no longer trusted people.
As I saw hope destroyed around me I adopted a spirit of fear.
Here’s the story.
“On Dec. 9, 1978 the Golden State Killer emerged in Danville, where he raped a woman alone in her home. He went quiet again, disappearing until April 1979, when he attacked a couple in Fremont. His behavior spiked in June, when he raped two teen girls in Walnut Creek and one woman in Danville. His final Bay Area crime was on July 5, 1979, when he broke into the home of a Danville couple (my neighbor and the family I babysat for). After that, the Golden State Killer moved onto Southern California and escalated to almost exclusively murders.” (source: SFGATE)
Here’s the number of years I was in captivity: 40. If you’ve read the Bible then you’re familiar with wilderness seasons of 40 days or 40 years. They are markers of turnaround.
“Revival-hood” is a word!
You’ll hear me say this on the video (below) as my mind took the word “revival” and added the “neighbor-HOOD” to the end of it.
There you go….