2012 was when it all started.
i had gone to the outspoken conference at Hope Chapel. Robby Dawkins was the speaker and through him, the Holy Spirit opened up my eyes to a reality that i didn’t think was possible.
during the Saturday night session, the Holy Spirit showed up and revealed his presence to me in a tangible way. it was something i didn’t even know was possible but it was something that would be a constant reminder for me the next (almost) five years as i struggled with a whole lot of stuff.
during some of the darkest nights when i thought i had lost all hope, i would be reminded that He sees me and He was with me. when i felt so far from God laying in a hospital bed, He revealed to me that He hadn’t left and was right there beside me. in that dark, dark moment, God pursued me. when i thought i had lost everything, He showed me that He was still there and i hadn’t lost him. He hadn’t lost ME either. i wasn’t lost in the crowd. i was seen and heard by Him. every time the Holy Spirit revealed himself to me in this way, i was able to direct myself back to Him and remind myself of Truth.
it was after that conference in 2012, i was so interested in learning more about this life that is possible with the Holy Spirit!
i began attending a class at Hope called Spirit Filled Living. it was my favorite night of the week! so much Truth. so many “wow!” moments. the enemy would creep in sometimes whispering lies and doubts and confusion but God still patiently yet persistently showed me and revealed to me just how much He saw me. yes, He saw my pains, doubts, confusion but He also saw my dreams, hopes and future. when the Holy Spirit spoke to me, there was no confusion. only clarity and moments of being in awe of him.
just the other day i was going through one of my journals from 2014. it was one of my journals that i used when i would go to that SFL class. there was a piece of paper that i had tucked in there. it wasn’t my handwriting. i continued to read the words that someone had written down. they had written these words down for me as the Holy Spirit spoke to me through this guy who was leading the class that evening. after that, the person who wrote it all down handed me the piece of paper and i tucked it in my journal.
a lot of what he said still burns in my memory. i mentioned this in my last post but the guy saw me walking down a road and God would show me the road signs to where i needed to go next but i wouldn’t be able to see those road signs though until i stepped out in faith and obedience. it was through that that the Father would guide me and lead me. it has been something that i have constantly reminded myself the past few years.
something that was written down on the paper that i don’t remember him saying was the following…
don’t calculate. just have confidence in Him. He will replace fear with faith
i probably could have been encouraged by those words the past few years if i had actually remembered that he said that… but in all honesty, i think those words are needed more today than ever before. i am more encouraged by those words today than the day that he said that back in 2014!
you might be thinking, “well aren’t you doing well right now? haven’t you been experiencing healing and freedom? don’t you think you would’ve been more encouraged by those words in the midst of your struggles?”
my answer would be this…
yes. i am doing well. really, really well actually! i have been experiencing so much freedom and healing. so much so, that my mind is blown away and the people who have been a part of my treatment team don’t have any medical explanation for it.
i have always thought that i trusted God and had faith but not until now am i really understanding what that looks like…
it is BECAUSE of that freedom and healing, that i am beginning to transition out of those things that i once needed.
medication was the first to go. from that, i have been able to experience more joy and peace than what i knew when on medication for that depression and anxiety.
five weeks ago, it was dietician appointments. i have been doing better in the past five weeks without those weekly appointments than ever before.
“God, you’re talking to the wrong person about this! i can’t stop therapy. this is all i know”
“Annie, i am showing you that i am all you need. press into me. have confidence in me. don’t try to figure it all out. just trust me!”
fear of man and judgment crept in.
fear of my future without therapy crept in.
fear and doubts of my ability to do life without therapy crept in.
i look at that fear as i am writing this and laugh. i am laughing at the enemy. the fear felt very real but it wasn’t from God. it was a lie from the enemy.
fear doesn’t have to be reality for me.
freedom from that fear CAN be a reality for me though and i have been pressing into that.
as i am making transitions and letting go of the things that i once needed, i am truly seeing that God knows how difficult it is for me. He knew that a few days ago and He allowed me to run across that paper from Spirit Filled Living class in 2014… the same day i sent the email to my therapist telling her that therapy isn’t needed in this moment. i was reminded of the words spoken to me that are more encouraging now than ever before.
“don’t calculate. just have confidence in Him. He will replace fear with faith”
the enemy has nothing on the King of kings. the enemy can’t hold me down anymore with the fear that once felt paralyzing.
my pastor mentioned this last week to me and i felt like he was putting all of my thoughts into words. it was all so clear to me. therapy is like training wheels and the goal is to eventually ride on your own.
for a while, i needed those training wheels. i needed the help of therapy and professionals to help me renew my mind etc. that’s okay. what is not okay is staying in that place if it’s no longer needed.
6 weeks ago, the Holy Spirit began an acceleration of renewing and transforming my mind. it has been happening quicker and has been more thorough than any sort of therapy could ever renew and transform my mind.
i am realizing that not only are those training wheels not needed right now but in a way, they are holding me back from what i am supposed to go do. when i think of training wheels, they will help you until you know how to ride on your own. you won’t know until you try. you might fall a few times but once you know how to ride without those training wheels, why hold onto them? it will slow you down from your ability to go faster. it will keep you from seeing your full potential.
as of right now, the therapy is holding me back from trusting God and believing fully that what i can do with Him and only Him is far better than what any therapist has been able to help me with. it might look crazy to the world from the outside looking in… but that’s okay. my Father doesn’t lie to me and doesn’t trick me into something that will harm me. i am confident that what i have experienced is the Truth and the freedom i have been experiencing is reality and just the beginning. if God is for us, who can be against us? (romans 8:31)
going back to what i read on that paper from SFL class…
i don’t need to have it all figured out to say “yes God. you can have it all. i trust you fully to do whatever you want with me”
it can be scary if i look at it through a human lens and think about what i am only capable of doing on my own.. but God… but faith…
i know that He will show up for me, guide me, lead me, speak to me, love me and show me grace when i mess up. He will give me the strength. i know these things because my God is faithful and He is who He says He is!
as i transition out of what i have known for so long, God is truly replacing my fear with faith. i am learning to not calculate how it’s all going to work out and instead, trust and have confidence that the Father is leading me into something so much greater than anything i could ever dream of on my own.
He is replacing fear with courage and excitement. i am truly so excited to see how He is going to launch me into my fullest potential now that i am no longer holding onto the things that are not needed right now.
He see’s us.
He knows us.
i am thankful that we don’t have to calculate and figure out how it is going to be done.
we just have to have confidence knowing that He will never ever let us down.
what a good, loving, faithful Father we have!
“…the old has passed away; behold, the new has come” 2 Corinthians 5:17
i am ready, God.
i am so ready to fully trust You.