I remember the first panic attack that I ever had happen was when I was a little girl. I had a tormenting thought engulf my mind. What if my mom died? Oh, my goodness, I became so scared that my mom was going to die.
I would cry and lay on my mom’s lap, hoping that God would never let that happen to me. Of course, now I know that it was just Satan trying to steal my joy as a child, but I never really dealt with my problem of fear until I was much older.
As I grew up, I would have these times in my life that were really stressful. I would feel anxiety attacking my mind and body. As time passed, I slipped further and further away from the presence of God.
I began to reach for the things of the world. I started drinking alcohol and partying. This only led to more guilt, shame and anxiety. Whenever I felt anxious, I would reach for a strong drink; something that would calm my nerves and make me feel numb.
This went on for 14 years.
Finally, I found myself hitting rock bottom, what could I do? Who could I turn to? Even though I had drifted so far away from God for all of these years, I made the decision to make a change in my life. I could not continue to slip further into the pit. I decided to go back to the cross. I accepted Jesus Christ as my personal savior and began to rebuild my life.
In 1996 I came under such an attack of the enemy that fear tried to overtake my life. I was so afraid that I was going to lose my mind and end up in a mental institution. The more I stressed about it, the stronger the attack became. I would have all of these really strange feelings and my mind became consumed with such torment. I would cry out to the Lord,
Please help me, I am desperate! I am pleading to you God; please take this from me!
I went to several different doctors and their diagnosis was that I had a panic disorder. The doctors prescribed Xanax and antidepressants. But wait God, I am trusting in you to take care of me. Why do I have to take this medicine when you are King of Kings and Lord of Lords? You are the Great Physician.
I continually warred with the idea of taking all of this medicine when God is the healer. Satan would tell me, God will heal others but not you. You are not worthy of his healing. Satan would also tell me that I had an evil spirit and that is why I was in this mess. Everything Satan could throw at me, he did. I became so tormented with crazy dreams that I could not sleep.
I would ask God where are you? I was sinking into a pit and needed help. I didn’t want to leave my house; I would get in the car and this terrible cloud of anxiety would engulf me. I would want to go back to my house as fast as I could get there. Help me God Please!
My wonderful husband Bill, and my mother, father and two sisters prayed diligently for me every day. I also had a very close friend Vonda Bishop who helped me and prayed with me. Finally, one day, God placed an anointed woman of God in my life. Sister Mildred Dalton. She was an older, very wise minister of the Gospel of Jesus Christ. She began to take me under her wing and teach me God’s ways.
She informed me that I was sowing all kinds of bad seeds over myself with the words that I spoke. Oh, I’m going crazy, and I am afraid I am having a nervous breakdown. Sister Dalton told me where the precious promises were in God’s Word for my situation. She had walked through the same attack earlier in her Christian life. She would tell me, listen to me, don’t listen to the devil.
I began to quote God’s Word over myself every day.
For God hath not given us the spirit of fear; but of power, and of love, and of a sound mind. 2 Timothy 1:7
When I found this scripture, I stood on it with everything in me. Every time I would start to feel panicky, I would quote this scripture over myself. You see, I didn’t have to do anything but stand on God’s Word. God’s Word is medicine to those whose find it.
Of course, you can’t claim God’s promises if you don’t serve him, but if you are a believer; then it will work for you. I began to search the Bible for God’s promises for me. I wrote all of those down and quoted them daily over myself. I continued to pray and ask God for his strength and help. In the midst of the storm, I used the sword of the spirit, which is God’s Word to defeat the devil.
This did not happen overnight, but baby step by baby step I walked out of the attack. Every day I became a little stronger and finally I looked back and I was out of the attack. I renewed my mind with God’s Word and became victorious. I built my faith by quoting His Word.
So then, faith cometh by hearing and hearing by the Word of God. Romans 10:17.
I want to encourage you to make up your mind that you are going to stand, no matter how hard the battle may seem.
Put on the whole armour of God that you may be able to stand against the wiles of the devil. Ephesians 6:11.