The long, long bridge

“And I just feel, as we’re praying, that Dawn, you have something coming into your life that will be very hard – it will break you.  It’s nothing that Jeff can do with or for you – it will be just you and God. I see you on a bridge – and you’re just getting ready to take the first steps onto it.  It will be very scary, but you can know that the Lord will be with you in the midst of it all.”

As soon as the words left her mouth, I just KNEW that the Lord was going to take all my children from me.  I just KNEW – with fear and terror – that it was likely, since she said that Jeff couldn’t deal with it for me, that he would be taken, as well.  I lived in stark raving terror for weeks.  I couldn’t plan anything, I couldn’t do anything, I couldn’t look to the future in any way, because I was certain that the destruction of my family was imminent.

It was, but certainly not in the way that I had thought – it was the death of sin in my life….or at least, the beginning of it.  That day, a beautifully warm October Sunday afternoon, in the middle of the park, where we were gathered to seek the Lord’s face in prayer, began a process that has been long in coming into my life.

You see,  I have ALWAYS wrestled with fear.  My first memories are of fear. My first words were about fear.  I have vivid memories – to this day – of seeing things in the dark, knowing that they were there to take me captive.  I have memories of the walk, in the dark, to the bathroom nearly leaving me undone.  Fear has been a constant companion in my life.  (And in the lives of my mother’s family before me.)

Step by step, since that first time in the park, the Lord has been dealing with fear in me.  He has put His gracious and loving finger on an aspect of fear in my life, one tiny bit at a time.  Each time, it has been hard – VERY hard – and yet, each time it has been sweet, when all the dust settled.

The first thing that the Lord did is deal with my misunderstanding of fear.  Until then, I had always thought that I was a victim of fear.  That fear would come upon me and rule in my heart -when in fact, it was a matter of sin in me.  THAT was a huge issue.  That understanding was so very needful, in order to understand that I simply couldn’t stand and allow sin to have its way over me.

About 2 years after the original vision was given to Deb, we were praying together again and she said, “Wow, Dawn, I see you on that same bridge – only this time, you’re not just starting onto it – you’re in the middle of it.”  However, the difference is this time is that she described the bridge.  She told me that it was a rope bring hanging over a huge chasm.  Had she told me that the first time she shared the vision with me, it would have left me undone.

Deb moved not too long after that and we haven’t been able to pray together since then.  But, off and on, through out the last years of my life, the Lord has given me the same vision, with me further and further along the bridge.

This week, I believe I am standing at the very edge, about to step off the bridge.  There is one area of my life that has continued to be a struggle for me.  I believe (as does Jeff and a few other people being led to pray for me) that it is imperative that I wrestle this last vestige of fear out, in order to move ahead in what He has next for us.

I also believe that the Lord left this issue until the end, as I could then watch my mother fight the cancer battle – and win – in heaven’s eyes.  No, I’m not announcing I have cancer, but I am fighting some health issues that are really scary to me.

Both my parent’s families have had issues of heart disease and this last week, I’ve been showing some symptoms that would line up with that.  Of course, the more frightened I become at the possibility, the more stressed I am, the more they show up.  (What a lovely little circle they all make, huh?)   I have been in touch with two natural health people, so that I’m not flying blindly in this. I feel pretty well armed, in the physical realm, to do battle with this.  But, in the spiritual…..

I’m still struggling to see fear broken, once and for all, in my life.  I want to finish this walk across the bridge!  I can not tell you how much I am longing to see it fall; broken and crushed to smithereens.  Since I began this walk, my prayer has been the same, “Lord, let me and my family be ENEMIES to the spirit of fear.”  If Father would so lead, I’d covet your prayers for us, in that same vein.  Please pray that I leave this bridge more than a conquerer!  Please pray over me ” then you will lift up your face without shame; you will stand firm and without fear”  (Job 11:15)

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For those of you who have battled with this sin, you know how pervasive and aggressive it can be – and how stinking illogical it is!!  Here are a few verses to soothe both my heart – and your own:

I will not fear the tens of thousands drawn up against me on every side.

The LORD is my light and my salvation— whom shall I fear? The LORD is the stronghold of my life— of whom shall I be afraid?

I sought the LORD, and he answered me; he delivered me from all my fears.

Therefore we will not fear, though the earth give way and the mountains fall into the heart of the sea – (this by the way is a Psalm by the sons of Korah – something that the Lord is working in our lives.  I can’t wait to share it with you.)

As a father has compassion on his children, so the LORD has compassion on those who fear him;  (this is the putting ON of good fear)

He will have no fear of bad news; his heart is steadfast, trusting in the LORD.

His heart is secure, he will have no fear; in the end he will look in triumph on his foes.

The LORD delights in those who fear him, who put their hope in his unfailing love.  (Another good fear to put on)

And I have plenty more where those came from.  🙂  Be at peace, dear friends, may we all walk in the Truth of His Word and may fear be far from us all!

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Comments
4 Responses to “The long, long bridge”
  1. Elizabeth says:

    I learned in early childhood that fear was the most common thing I had to deal with daily. When you are raised by a man who is mentally ill (my brothers and I can figure out no other reason for his being as he was)…life becomes a daily struggle. A constant battle to try to find ways to be as unseen as possible so as not to be beaten for something, many days you could not even begin to figure out how to avoid. Good behavior did not mean an absence of it. A lot of the fear began to leave once I married my husband. But there has been ocassions since to have to battle it. As I have aged, and learned more about the FATHER and HIS Kingdom, it has helped so much. The more I have seen HIM at work, the easier it has been to not worry and to not fear!! I am so glad HE understands ALL that happens to us. One of the rare times in my life when it seemed I actually heard HIS audible voice, it was to tell me that HE knew every thing, EVERYTHING that had ever happened to me because HE had been with me every day of my life and that it did not matter what anyone else thought or said…because HE knows the truth. Yes, gently in years hence HE has been helping me to deal with the sins too…but at this point, it still seems to me that the fear issue was once foisted on me without any invitation from me. We do pay for the sins of our fathers, for generations, if we believe what scripture says. But once we realize that HE is there with us, always, we can begin to pray against those things. Or so it seems to me.

  2. javadawn says:

    Oh Elizabeth, just reading this breaks my heart! I’m so sorry to read of the depth of pain and fear in your childhood.

    I wish I understood my own sin well enough to offer you a clear understanding of what the difference is – but there is something about the way I respond to fear that is sin.

    Once I grabbed hold of that, suddenly it became a matter of MY response. (As opposed to believing I was nothing more than a victim, which is what I believed before.) Again, I’m sorry, I can’t communicate it well – but I am certain, since the Lord confronted that sin in my life, that for me, it is sin.

    And Elizabeth – how precious is the love of the Lord, that He would speak so clearly to you, to tell you of His great love for you and His attention to the amount of suffering you have been through. Blessed be the Name of our Lord, His love endures forever.

  3. molleth says:

    *hugs*

    I’m going through something similar…the stress of going through the last couple years brought it on, I know it. A body can only take so much adrenalin.

    You are so right that it comes down to fear, when all is said and done. I know that’s what happened to me that helped me start on the journey of recovery (which looks like it will be long and slow)…just realizing that whole “what if” scenario…what if the worst thing happens?

    Will I still love You then, if You allow even the worst? It was like I had to put every last little drop of everything on the altar…and I cried…for a long time…but realized that I would still love Him, that I could trust His hand, even if it gave me the worst… That was the day that Fear lost. Not that he is still ever present, but he lost the death grip. Jesus took away his sting. 🙂

    Praying for you, sister!!!

  4. javadawn says:

    Thanks Molls – I know you understand the battle that raged over me in this arena. I believe that the worst of it has passed – and I’m still standing. (Therefore put on the full armor of God, so that when the day of evil comes, you may be able to stand your ground, and after you have done everything, to stand.) I appreciate your prayers VERY much!

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