FEELING AFRAID?

FEELING AFRAID?

Are you feeling afraid of something? STOP! Turn around, face the fear and use the sword of the Word! Declare over your fear, “So we can say with confidence, the LORD is my helper, so I will have no fear. What can mere people do to me?” (Hebrews 13:6). “So, with Him on my side, I’m fearless, afraid of no one and nothing.” (Psalms 27:1 – MSG). Fear is not to be managed. It is to be dealt with using the Word of God and the authority Christ has given you.

DON’T CURSE YOURSELF

From the mouths of babes. A mom was troubled by her daughter’s ongoing anxiety and worry. Every night she would declare how awful she is going to sleep, and it would put her into a bad cycle with so much angst and worry in her voice. I taught her how to teach her daughter to take authority over it and this is what her daughter said, “I like that, filling me with peace. I’m going to sleep well tonight.” 

THAT’S A LIE

When I hear a child speak a lie about themselves (I am not smart enough, I am slow, I can never figure this out, etc.), I simply tell them that they are partnering with something from God’s enemy. Do they want to continue to partner with that (they do have free will), or do they want to throw that one out? Then, I told them they could kick out or throw out whatever thoughts came to their mind that wasn’t of God. Hudson, who was only four then, literally went to the front door and motioned like he was kicking something out before slamming the door. Yeah, like that! Kids need to be taught that not every thought that crosses their mind is theirs, and they can be empowered to say NO!

FEAR, I SEE YOU

I loved receiving this testimony!!! Crawl into the world of this little boy and how his mom responded to his real heart. 

“Hi Lisa, I’m not sure you’ll get this, I know you receive a lot of messages but I just finished your JOURNEY course and had to share something that happened today. My three-year-old has been struggling in Sunday school for the last month or so. When I signed him in he immediately cried and clung to me. I told the teacher I would keep him for worship and try again in a bit. We went in and started singing and he just hugged me and snuggled through two songs. I brought it up that I would take him after singing and he started fussing again. The band started singing Jeremy Camp “Same Power” right then and it hit me – your authority lesson! I asked him if he wanted to not be afraid and then I said, ‘Fear, I see you,’ and commanded it to leave and then ushered in peace. After the song I asked if he was ready and he was a completely different kid!! He walked to the room holding my hand and didn’t look back after saying bye to me. I am embarrassed to say I’m shocked, I shouldn’t be, because this is our God, but I just can’t recall ever feeling this powerful before in my parenting. I’m just so excited to have done this class and learn things I can use to help my kids through life! Thank you, thank you!!!”

DON’T MESS WITH MY KIDS

One night we went to the playground with some friends. They were all playing ball nicely when three boys entered the scene and joined them. The boys left early, and my kids came to tell me how mean they were and the awful things they were saying to them. I told them to shake it off and go enjoy the rest of the time at the park, but apparently, one of the boys said upon leaving that they would be back to beat them up. I could tell the kids were partnering with intimidation, so I asked them to ask Jesus if He would show them a picture of the boys’ hearts. All of the kids heard really big stuff. I then asked them to ask Jesus what the name of the KEY is that He wanted them to use with their hearts. They went off to play, and sure enough, the boys came back. I walked over to them, and this love just fell in my heart for them. It was so easy to see these boys were not bullies but treasures! I asked if they wanted to play ball with the other kids, and one of them confessed they didn’t know how to play the game the way they were playing it (aha, perhaps he wasn’t a bully, but feeling inadequate and afraid to admit his weakness). His eyes locked with mine, and I told him that I could see he was a strong leader and that I believed he had the skills to work it out and encouraged him to try again. They ended up being a friendly group of boys playing a mean game of ball!

NO JUNIOR AUTHORITY

Children so desperately need to be taught their authority. If they do not get a junior Holy Spirit, they do not get junior authority either. How many of us were taught that when we were afraid at night to say, “In the name of Jesus, Satan flee?” While few of us deeply understand our authority, the enemy still had to obey and flee when we used the authority paid for us by the blood of Jesus. Imagine how powerful this next generation would be if children would see the enemy’s tricks for what they were and step over it!? How will they know unless we teach them? Isaiah 11:8.

“My son told my husband there was a ‘bumblebee’ in the corner of his bed, and it was so scary that he couldn’t sleep. My husband first prayed over it and then taught our son to say, ‘Go away in Jesus’ name.’ He fell right asleep after that. Praise God!!”

Kids have a limited vocabulary and range of understanding, but that doesn’t mean they aren’t seeing/hearing things in the spiritual realm. It takes a wise parent to really ‘hear’ what the child is saying. It had nothing to do with bumblebees and everything to do with fear of being in the room. Kudos to this father for ‘hearing’ his son.

LISTENING TO THE CHECK IN MY SPIRIT

I want to invite you into part of my personal journey in keeping my own children safe.

My daughter asked me one summer if she could get an app. After much dialogue, I agreed. The app was simply supposed to be a service for managing and tracking information. Fast forward to the present. I was away on a trip and noticed my daughter was not acting like herself. I called her numerous times and could just tell something was going on. I even FaceTimed her just to see her face. I hung up and said out loud, “She is lying. She is not okay.”

I came back from my trip and discovered a man was outside at night. Beer cans and bottles were left on different occasions in the same place; another night a pair of construction glasses were left behind. I felt a heightened sense of danger but could not for the life of me find my authority. Normally in situations like that, I rise up like Mama Bear and deal with it, but I was stumbling. It went on for a week. I discovered footprints outside my daughters’ bedroom window and one morning found evidence of someone in our backyard too. My fear was increasing. Clearly, they were not there to break-in, or they would have done it already. There was someone outside watching or worse yet, waiting. I was growing restless with concern. I met with the police and bought an expensive surveillance system. All the while my fear that there was present danger would not cease or back down.

I began to sense something so strongly in my spirit with my daughter. I would ask her questions, but her answers were not bringing me peace. She went to bed early one night, and my spirit was deeply agitated. An hour later I went into her room, turned on her light, sat down and told her I was not leaving until whatever this thing was broke. She lamented with great emotion that everything was fine and that she was not covering anything or intentionally lying.

Parents, sometimes we have to listen to our gut louder than our children. My spirit was alerting me, and it was to be heard, not ignored or dismissed. Yes, we want to respect their free will. Yes, they are becoming adults. Yes, we do not want to move into operating out of control. But if my daughter, who is still under my covering and authority, is struggling, in over her head or hurting, I cannot just turn from her because she resists me in the moment. It is my job to get involved.

Finally, I just started to pray out loud, pouring out my concern and sense that something was not right. I asked her again, and she said nothing. I continued to pray. “Jesus, what is this?” Finally, with great courage, my daughter mentioned that the app she got over the summer had private online chat groups (something that was NOT promoted ahead of time. One didn’t know about it until they were members). She began to tell me about the discussions from peers with instructions on how to pursue same-sex relationships and why kids should have sex before marriage. I asked what she thought about it and she said she knew it was not right. There was still something about this that was not matching the deep check in my spirit. I said, “Sweetie, you are right, that is not okay, but there is something else.” Her witnessing those conversations did not equal the danger I was sensing. She was adamant there was nothing.

I finally asked to see it and was MORTIFIED to discover my daughter was not talking with peers but grown men. Peers do not ask those kinds of questions and my spirit suddenly rose up like Mama Bear. The girls on this online chat were being deceived and lured. Because she violated my rules for safety AND ignored the warnings of the Holy Spirit she opened herself up to danger. And it was manifesting in the natural outside at night.

We walked through some serious repentance (she was horrified at the realization), deleted the app, rose up in our authority as a family and returned the surveillance camera.

God is serious about keeping our children safe, too. Holy Spirit put a check in my spirit that something was not okay. We have to get comfortable listening, honoring, obeying and responding to that nudge in our spirit and not talk ourselves out of it. My daughter had opened not only herself, but our family to danger and Holy Spirit was ON IT to reveal and expose it.

EXPOSING FEAR 2/3

Shock and Awe

Shock and awe (technically known as rapid dominance) is explained as a tactic based on the use of overwhelming power and spectacular displays of force to paralyze the enemy’s perception of the battlefield and destroy their will to fight. This is true in the natural times of war and how the enemy works. The enemy takes situations (opening a bill in the mail, news of a death, low grade, car accident, trauma, etc.) and uses this shock and awe tactic on people, including children. Their entire being is on alert, much like a hand where all the fingers are flexed simultaneously. The brain, mind, emotions, and nervous system are overwhelmed, and in that split-second moment before logic and coping skills kick in, the enemy whispers his lie (“You are all alone,” “No one cares,” “Your God is not powerful,” etc.). When the body, mind, and emotions begin to calm down (like fingers that go back to a relaxed state), the lie remains because, at that moment, the lie FEELS true based on the evidence. The enemy then gets to influence us because we partnered with the lie.

Here is an excellent example of how this plays out. Many in the world are beginning to calm down from the shock and awe over recent events and are overcoming this tactic of the enemy. “No, no, no, I will not be influenced by fear. I do not partner with the idea of doom or lack. I will not bow down, lie down, or shrink back. I am a child of God with a Father who has defeated the spirit behind this attack. I will cling to Him, His Kingdom, His power, His voice, and His resources in this hour.” I WILL arise!

SCHOOL SHOOTING

I lived in Colorado when the Columbine school shooting occurred, and it is a memory that shapes you. As much as we want to shield our children from the evil in the world, there are occasions when the right response is to empower and equip them amid danger and uncertainty.

One summer, our town was hit with deadly wildfires that kept everyone on edge for weeks. A mom came to me for help with her children, who were fighting nonstop and acting out. I asked what she told them about the fire, and she said, “Oh, we are protecting them by not telling them about it.” I lovingly encouraged her to stop lying to her children. The reality is our town WAS in danger, and we were going through REAL fear. To tell a child who feels it in the atmosphere that it is ‘nothing’ robs them of having a sound mind. Their bellies scream one thing while their trusted parent tells them another. This causes them to be confused and feel wildly insecure (hence the acting out). Children do not need to carry the weight of all the gory details, but when tragedy and crisis hit their world, in this case, their schools, parents, you have the privilege and responsibility of walking them through it. There is no doubt when school resumes, there will be talk on the playground. Picture the child who was told it was nothing by their parents and gets an earful from peers yet is expected to carry on in math class with no one to help them interpret what they are hearing. Now picture the child who was told the truth and was allowed to process their concerns and emotions with a loving parent. Which one do you want your child to be?

I encourage you to call a family meeting and talk about what is happening and allow the Spirit to lead you. Age-appropriate details are wise but share the truth, nonetheless. I like to share word pictures that help my children understand big events. In this case, I might ask them if they remember a time where they had a big meltdown and explain that sometimes adults get super upset about things and throw temper tantrums. This is the simplest way to explain the irrational behavior of an adult. Instead of seeing the offender as a big bad scary person, we can expose them for their immaturity and weakness in character. Ask them if they ever remember saying things in anger when they were mad. You can tell them there is a person who threw a big temper tantrum and has made threats with their words. When a child says mean things, they get disciplined for it by a parent, but when an adult makes threats or comments that include being mean to others, it is the policeman’s job to keep people safe.

Now is a GOLDEN time to talk to your children about Jesus being their friend. Role-play how to go to Jesus when they are away from Mom and Dad, feeling scared or afraid. This applies to overnights at a friend’s house, at the mall, or even in their schools. The enemy wants to scream fear at your child through the event, but as parents, we turn to Him and teach our children to declare the name of Jesus. I would highlight the following truths: God is in control. They have police and leaders who take their safety seriously. They are not alone – Jesus is always with them. They can ask Jesus for help. They are not a victim but powerful. I encourage you to walk your child through taking AUTHORITY over THEIR school. Recently, my daughters had to walk through over 20 classmates getting suspended or expelled for vaping. They began to rise up and pray that their school would be a no-vaping campus (out of protection for their friends). They had authority because it was their school. They can declare no weapon is allowed on their campus. Ask God to release angels to protect their school. Pray for the teachers, that they would have a check in their spirit when they need to act on something. Make declarations over their campus regarding kids being safe and protected. Remind them that they are NOT in danger, but the schools were closed to keep them safe. Fill their love tanks often today, which helps them to roll with life’s bumps. Empower them in the face of evil, not to cower in fear, but to smear the power and love of Jesus all over all that belongs to them, which includes their school.

PASSING FEAR ON TO OUR CHILDREN

Ask any adult who grew up in Minnesota in the ’80s who Jacob Wetterling is, and they will tell you. He was an 11-year-old boy who was abducted while riding his bike home, and his body was not found for 27 years. It left a bone-chilling fear in parents that the same thing could happen to their child. Parents kept their children safe by not letting them go out at night or roam the neighborhood like they once did. Countless parents partnered with FEAR over what happened to Jacob, and it shaped their parenting. The children watched their responses and learned how to handle uncertainty and danger. As a mother now myself, I get it, but what happened is that it taught a generation in that region about fear and feeling unsafe. Those kids, myself included, grew up with an undying fear that something terrible could happen. It was nearly 30 years later that I broke agreement with the fear and learned that I was safe at night.

How you respond to current events NOW has the potential to shape your child and how they respond to future crises. Are you teaching and modeling for them how to walk in fear and panic or confidence and faith? They are watching you and are learning how to respond in times of crisis.

WHEN FEAR KNOCKS

I sensed something in my spirit – the kind of thing that makes you very alert. I fully trust that Father God has my back and lets me know what I need to know in order to protect my family. It was discovered that a homeless camp nearby was recently broken up, and some of them have made our backyard their resting place (including under my porch). After talking with the neighbor, we learned they attempted to enter her home. Fear – cold as ice fear – had every ‘right’ to reign, but I know too much about fear to give it room. The following night, fear tapped me on the shoulder almost hourly, waking me from a deep sleep. I would get out of bed, turn the lights on/off and use my authority over it. Fear is a lie that says God isn’t in control and isn’t able to help me. It makes me MAD that fear was knocking so hard at the door of my mind, heart, and family, but I refuse – REFUSE – to let it in. Every and any time it knocked, I would say, “Fear, I will not and do not partner with you. I command you to go now in Jesus’ name.” The following night I handed our safety over to the Father, turned off all the lights, and slept like a baby. We welcome the very thing we fear when we partner with it. This is my home, and I have a legal right to stand firm and not answer the door. Whatever door the spirit of fear is knocking on in your life, rise up and declare, “Not in my house! You are not welcome here,” and then invite Holy Spirit to come as your Protector and Defender.