Yesterday was a big day in my life; I would venture to say it was a life-changing experience, second only to my conversion. You should see my face today, I cried so much my eyes are swollen. I don’t even have the energy to put make-up on. Spiritual warfare is exhausting.
Two days after my last bout of major depression my Sunday Class teacher emailed me (completely unaware of my struggles-nice work, God) and invited me to partake in an afternoon of fighting for my spiritual freedom. That certainly sounded like something I needed. I agreed and we set a date, April 29th.
It was 1:00pm before I made it into the modular room where my teacher Steve, sponsor Kimmy, and another prayer warrior, Terry, awaited my arrival. Steve and I worked through the 7 Steps to Freedom in Christ (Neil T. Anderson) while Terry and Kimmy prayed for me…for 4 hours.
“‘Come now, let us reason together,’ says the Lord, ‘Though your sins be as scarlet, they shall be white as snow; though they are red as crimson, they shall be like wool.'” Isaiah 1:18
I went in with mild expectations of what would happen, but I emerged a changed woman. I discovered fighting for my freedom was hard, painful, and exhausting. Throughout this ordeal I uncovered bitterness I was unaware of, strongholds that had been weighing me down, and serious repentance of issues I had never regarded as sin. What happened was extremely personal, and for the first time in my life I was 100% honest. I heard my own voice declare sins, repent, renounce, and claim freedom in Christ. Verbal reinforcement is powerful.
There I stood in the presence of God, uncovered and completely exposed. I had to make a choice.
All of my years of bulimia, addiction, rebellion, self-mutilation, and controlling had only served as a means of self punishment. I was giving myself what I thought I deserved. In order to walk in Freedom, I had to choose to forgive myself and renounce my sin. Steve insisted, “You don’t just ‘try’ to forgive, you must choose to forgive yourself.” Whew, it was powerful and it took me several minutes to work through.
“As far as the east is from west, so far has God removed our transgression from us.” Psalm 103:12
There was a lot more to this than forgiveness. Specific issues had to be recalled (which was not fun), and their sinful patterns renounced. It was basically 4 hours of repentance. During this time the battle raged on in my head (the enemy at work), I would read a statement like, “I am innocent” and would hear, “You will never be innocent!” I had to renounce the enemy repeatedly in every area of my life. I’m telling you, folks, the war against the spirit is serious. Satan does not want my freedom, but guess what? He has no power here anymore.
“So take everything the Master has set out for you, well made weapons of the best materials. And put them to use so you will be able to stand up to everything the Devil throws your way…This is for keeps, a life-or-death fight to the finish against the devil and all his angels.” Ephesians 6:10-12 msg
I left that meeting not just feeling like I was lighter, but knowing I was set free. Once and for all, it was over. The decades of depression, the eating disorder, the sins of my haunting past; it was over. I was no longer defined by my past. I am not a failure, disappointment, or a worthless whore. I was clean, I was whole. I had prayed for years to be made whole, I had begged and pleaded for healing and often wondered if God had turned his back on me. But yesterday, April 29th, I was set free once and for all. Spiritually and emotionally made whole. I walked out of that room whiter than snow. Finally, what I knew in the Word connected with my own experience.
The battle is not over, the war wages on. Is the enemy done with me? I doubt it. He is forever seeking to destroy my faith. What is different? I am equppied now to fight the battle with truth that sets me free. I know what to look for, I know how the enemy develops strongholds, and I know how to stop it. I can say with all authority under heaven, in the name of Christ Jesus, I have been healed and made whole. I am free.
(Neil T. Anderson has authored many books on spiritual freedom including, Victory Over Darkness, The Bondage Breaker, Overcoming Depression, and the manual I went through, The Steps to Freedom in Christ)
*In the coming posts I will list specific prayers from the 7 Steps to Freedom.
Pingback: Satan, God, the Flesh and Spiritual Warfare « Rebecca Aarup
Your story has a lot of the same parallels as mine, especially that demon call depression. I have looked at him many times in the eyes and found myself huddled in a hole entrapped by fear. If not for the men of God in my life who were prayer warriors themselves, who went to battle for me, I would still be there. My freedom did not come in an afternoon of prayer but after much fasting and prayer. Thank God for my brothers in Christ and the Power of the Risen Jesus to set us free. We are of One Accord in our Freedom! AMEN…
By the way I loved reading your story, Jesus is faithful to complete a good work in us.
Thanks for reading my story! Experiencing freedom is a marvelous joy, but it has only been possible through CONTINUOUS prayer and study of truth. No one could expect to continue to experience freedom without continuously fellowshipping with the Giver of Freedom! Stay in truth, claim it, and continue to experience freedom every day. God bless I rejoice with you!
Beautifully written. Thanks so much for sharing the love of Jesus! God bless you!
Thank you for stopping by and sharing my journey with me!
That was the most powerful statement I think I have ever read in my life! Wow! The 7 steps to freedom is something I have thought about doing for awhile. After reading this I know I must be strong to do this and totally ready. This post really opened my eyes to what it’s going to be like. Thank you Rebecca’s!
I am so happy you stumbled across this blog and read this. I know God oradained that! Why continue to carry around your emotional baggage when the freedom that is promised can be claimed and received and enjoyed? I urge you to resist the temptation to put it off, and set up an appointment with Steve. You will not be sorry! He is reading this testimony in class on Sunday (he told me) and hopefully others will see how life-changing this can be for them! I would love to pray for you during your meeting, so let me know when it is, and even if I cannot be there I will pray wherever I am. Love you, sister!
isn’t it amazing how god knows exactly when you need his help??
Yes! His omniscience is evident all around us!
Thank you for so openly sharing your heart and journey. God is amazing and wonderful! All glory to God! I will keep you in my prayers as you continue on this journey and that God will use this post to reach out to those that still struggle.
Yours in Christ
Thank you for your encouragement! I know God will turn my ashes into beauty. I actually believe that now. 🙂