The word we use often as Christians to describe having once been consumed or controlled by something, and then getting to a place where we have control again, and are no longer consumed by this thing. For example, freedom from addictions, freedom from anxiety, freedom from shame…etc. I talk about inner freedom a lot, and I’m a walking testimony of what freedom looks like. Yes freedom has muffin tops, don’t judge!
But when it comes to freedom, there’s a catch. Freedom doesn’t always look like a clean break, like an image of chains falling to the ground and rusty prison doors instantly swinging open, inner freedom can be messy, it can be costly, but it is always worth it.When I was in the midst of my breakdown with anxiety and despair, I thought I would do anything for freedom, but when I looked down the path to what it meant to be free, I was surprisingly hesitant, and more afraid of the pursuit of freedom than the acceptance of my bondage.
We want the Benny Hinn miracles and often we believe that healing can only come in the form of an instant miracle, and when we ask and don’t receive we accept our fate and cope. Deliverance and freedom is a messy process, and trust me, please trust me when I tell you that a long, messy road to freedom is just as glorifying to God as an overnight miracle!
Sometimes you need to stop praying for the miracle and start asking for the homework.Sometimes you need to stop praying for the miracle and start asking for the homework. Click To Tweet
Inner Freedom Can Feel Slow
I wanted freedom to be fast (miraculous), easy, without effort, joyful, predictable and safe. However, the reality for me was that the cost of freedom seemed almost more unbearable than the idea of learning to cope with fear. When I looked ahead and saw the vulnerability, the work, the battles, the loss of control I would need to be free, I seriously began begging God to send me back to my Egypt. I swore when I prayed for God to deliver me from anxiety, he had brought me into the wilderness to kill me!
They said to Moses, “Was it because there were no graves in Egypt that you brought us to the desert to die? What have you done to us by bringing us out of Egypt?!” Exodus 14When any of my children are limping around the house as a result of a sliver, I have to beg them to trust me that the pain and discomfort it will take to remove the sliver will bring them great freedom and relief when it is over, but more often than not, they beg me to leave the sliver in, for they can’t bear the look of the burnt needle. How often do you meet people trapped in their bondage, and when encouraged to be free, they often give you all the reasons why the process of freedom won’t work for them, or the cost is too high, yet they’re the first in the healing prayer line?
When you ask, you will receive. If freedom is what you want, freedom is what you will get, but you have to be willing to sit still and let God poke around in your heel for a bit.My freedom was messy, full of battles, wins, loses, painful surrenders, death defying grief, surrender, humility, and yes many miracles along the way, but it was work.My freedom was messy, full of battles, wins, loses, painful surrenders, death defying grief,… Click To Tweet
I love the verse in exodus where God tells Moses…. When Pharaoh let the people go, God did not lead them on the road through the Philistine country, though that was shorter. For God said, “If they face war, they might change their minds and return to Egypt.” Inner freedom can be long and messy, because once God sets us free, he never wants us to return to our bondage the minute we face trials, so he leads us out the long way.
I had to learn to trust God or die, I needed God’s shadow in the day, and his fire at night. Had I not stepped into the deadly wilderness towards freedom, I think I would already be back in Egypt making excuses and “coping”. God lead me the hard way out, and it was messy, but I made it, and you can too! Freedom is worth it, just take a deep breathe and follow Him out.