Overcoming the Creeps – A Devotion
We are human, but we don’t wage war as humans do. We use God’s mighty weapons, not worldly weapons, to knock down the strongholds of human reasoning and to destroy false arguments. We destroy every proud obstacle that keeps people from knowing God. We capture their rebellious thoughts and teach them to obey Christ.
Post Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD) is a type of anxiety disorder that many people suffer from without even knowing it. As with many psychological disorders that are not socially acceptable, people would rather attempt to deal with such problems rather than risk being labeled as “crazy” or “mentally-ill”. The truth is it is a common occurrence which is most likely after seeing or experiencing a traumatic event that involved threat of injury or death. It does not affect everyone the same way. The cause is unknown, but the symptoms undeniable and real impacting all aspects of a human being body, mind and even soul. PTSD changes the body’s physical and emotional response to stress causing a heightened reaction. Suggestions like “get over it” and “move on” do not work in this case but seem to be the common response of those who do not understand the true depth of the infraction and its impact on another. PTSD is overwhelming fear that takes over a person’s life long after the event that created the problem is over and done. One cannot overcome the thoughts that creep in unless dealing with the root of the problem. Moving on only adds to the weight of the baggage. Getting over it does not remove the barrier that is created by living life under stress and anxiety. I believe many people have this disorder in varying degrees and attempt to live with it. But I do not believe that this is the Will of God for His People. In reading the list of symptoms, I find myself within the description realizing all the more that God is not finished with me yet and there is so much more to this Life in Jesus Christ yet to discover.
We have been given a Brand New Life in Jesus Christ. In order, to live in this place a person must leave the old life behind. However, I have found that even when I am closer to the Lord than ever before my past seems to find me and creeps up from behind. It begins with a thought that takes me to a very real place in time making my heart race, my face flush and even evoking tears. If the enemy of our soul can bring our past into our future, he can stifle our progress toward experiencing more and more of the Light of God’s Amazing Love and pull us back into the darkness that we were desperate to escape. The Blood of Jesus Christ covers my sins. He has moved them as far away from me as the east is from the west. But until I can let them go, I will be traumatized by these things. I am forgiven but will I ever forget. Probably not, but through the Love of Jesus Christ I can overcome the impact the past has on my future. It begins one thought at a time. Paul says that we are to “capture rebellious thoughts” which is anything that returns us to the past and takes our eyes off of Jesus. The war is not human and so the philosophy and psychology of this world is not going to work, they are designed to help us get by. Jesus is an overcomer. He wants to take us from this world into His Kingdom which means every soul tie to this life must be broken and our heartstrings attached to the Lord. Human reasoning allows us to wallow in the offenses of our past as a crutch for doubt just in case God is not who He said and Jesus did not do what has been implied. False arguments water down the potency of God’s Promises injecting human mediocrity as a platform just in case we misinterpreted God’s Intentions not too put ourselves out there too far or maybe we use them to exalt us a little higher hoping for a closer proximity with God outside of His Grace, Love and Mercy. Whatever the case, the enemy is trying to give you a good dose of the creeps by hurling your past right back at you and insinuating that your sin was just too far over the edge for God’s Mercy and Grace. I call that a boldfaced lie straight from the pit of hell.
Colossians 3:1-4 (NLT)
Since you have been raised to new life with Christ, set your sights on the realities of heaven, where Christ sits in the place of honor at God’s right hand. Think about the things of heaven, not the things of earth. For you died to this life, and your real life is hidden with Christ in God. And when Christ, who is yourlife, is revealed to the whole world, you will share in all his glory.
The sin and indiscretions of one’s past are very difficult to get over sometimes as they leave imprints on the mind and scars on the heart. Those who accept Jesus Christ to be Lord and Savior essentially hand over what’s left to take the gift of a new life. However, moving from the past to the future is very difficult. The first symptom of PTSD is reliving the event or returning to the past. In plain terms, you just can’t get over it. A thought may just pop in your head. Something happens and immediately you are hurled back in time and what you dread the most is occurring over and over again. The Lord tells us that we must set our sights on the reality of heaven! Think about things relevant to God’s Kingdom. You are dead to the past. However, we all can agree healing takes time while some things are instantly washed away in the Blood of Jesus, other things require time to let go. God is patient, merciful and kind. Our life is renewed by the washing of His Word. (Ephesians 5:26) Your new life will never take hold until you stop thinking about your past and reliving it. When the enemy begins to creep up on you and the memory is vivid and clear – knowledge and understanding of the Word of God is the only effective weapon. Nothing can change the details of your past but in partnership with the Lord Jesus and His Helper, the Holy Spirit, you can move into the brand new life that Jesus is offering.
Revelation 3:15-19 (NLT)
“I know all the things you do, that you are neither hot nor cold. I wish that you were one or the other! But since you are like lukewarm water, neither hot nor cold, I will spit you out of my mouth! You say, ‘I am rich. I have everything I want. I don’t need a thing!’ And you don’t realize that you are wretched and miserable and poor and blind and naked. So I advise you to buy gold from me—gold that has been purified by fire. Then you will be rich. Also buy white garments from me so you will not be shamed by your nakedness and ointment for your eyes so you will be able to see. I correct and discipline everyone I love. So be diligent and turn from your indifference.”
The Love of God is passionate and hot for His People. He is a consuming fire that must have your soul entirely. (Hebrews 12:29) However, due to the infractions against them and the deep scars left by less than perfect love and the bitterness of those who have been rejected, human beings have a difficult time allowing themselves to fall passionately in love with God based on past experience. It is a position of safety to remain indifferent and lukewarm about the Lord with so much to lose. We are unable to focus on what is to gain in the Kingdom of God because as in PSTD we choose avoidance rather than commitment. Few are truly committed to loving God with their whole heart. Don’t believe me? Look at how “WE” treat each other, clearly not living by the direct mandate from our Lord to “love one another” as we desired to be loved. Nothing given nothing gained. The enemy wants you to doubt the Love of God because such a seed planted will harvest only failure when it comes to faith. God sees good and evil. There is no gray area or middle of the road. Indifference and avoidance are the lie of the enemy to separate you from a God who loves you completely and a Lord who will heal you to the uttermost. No more broken hearts in God’s Kingdom just fullness, completeness and unconditional love which you cannot experience from the grayness of mediocrity or darkness of denial. You are all in or all out. Turning from indifference is a vulnerable position! God understands and He will help you every step of the way. Call on His Name. Listen for His Answer. Don’t let the devil creep up on you sliding you from good to gray to evil. Your brand new life is filled with ALL the Goodness your Father has to offer reserved just for you! Won’t you step into the Light of His Love and take it! (Psalm 19:12-15) The offenses of your past inflicted by others are not your fault even the sin caused by the perilous hurt of others and circumstances that drove you there are considered by the Lord BUT when you choose to allow them to continually come between you and God sprouting in bitterness and unforgiveness it becomes sin all over again standing between you and the Presence of God! Get to the root of the problem and yank it out of your life tossing it in the Blood of Jesus. Let the Lord wash it away and reveal a tender, soft, fertile heart ready for seeds of faith to be harvested into a brand new life!
Philippians 4:6-7 (NLT)
Don’t worry about anything; instead, pray about everything. Tell God what you need, and thank him for all he has done. Then you will experience God’s peace, which exceeds anything we can understand. His peace will guard your hearts and minds as you live in Christ Jesus.
I believe what human beings desire most as a whole is peace. They long to be satisfied and believe that everything is going to be alright. The more I get to know God, the more the enemy hurls my past at me and every other lie that he can think of. When I encounter people from my past, I try to avoid them. I don’t want them to recognize me. The Holy Spirit must remind me that they don’t know “me” because I am a new creation. I should probably introduce myself. God healed my daughter’s body of asthma when she was two. Recently, she developed croup. For a splint second, the enemy told me her asthma had returned which would cause me to consider the validity of her healing. The Word of God apprehended the thought before I weakly wrapped my mind around it. Even today, I battle as my son is having some minor issues related to the treatment that he endured for cancer. God healed his body and killed that wretched tumor. Yet the enemy wants me to wonder are these symptoms more than just temporary inconveniences which I believe that they are. Worry and anxiety can be debilitating all on its own without association with the trauma of past events. It immobilizes our faith and causes us to stumble. When you begin to worry, turn it into a conversation with God. Let the Lord comfort you and encourage you building confidence in His Will, Way and Timing. PTSD is marked by heightened emotional arousal which means the smallest things can cause a completely un-proportional affect on our emotions causing a person to react rather than respond. God’s Word will cover and protect your heart when the enemy attempts to creep in with his lies. His Spirit will build your faith as a barrier between you and the devils fiery darts constantly being flung in your direction. The Lord will speak to you if you open your ears to His Voice. You can overcome the creeps by identifying the culprit and refusing to return to former things moving fully into the Promises of God’s which are “yes” and “amen” for you! (2 Corinthians 1:20)
I Peter 5:6-10 (NLT)
So humble yourselves under the mighty power of God, and at the right time he will lift you up in honor. Give all your worries and cares to God, for he cares about you. Stay alert! Watch out for your great enemy, the devil. He prowls around like a roaring lion, looking for someone to devour. Stand firm against him, and be strong in your faith. Remember that your Christian brothers and sistersall over the world are going through the same kind of suffering you are. In his kindness God called you to share in his eternal glory by means of Christ Jesus. So after you have suffered a little while, he will restore, support, and strengthen you, and he will place you on a firm foundation.
To my friends who have been diagnosed with PTSD, in the Name of Jesus I speak healing over your mind, soul and body. Father, break every chain that connects them to the past and lead them into Your Promises and Presence. For those of you who are battling the past, avoiding God and allowing the enemy to wreck havoc with your emotions including anxiety, stress and worry – I speak these very same words over you. The enemy is a roaring lion seeking to devour those who will return to the past and leave this brand new life of faith freely given by the Lord to His People. Stand firm against him. Refuse to move anywhere but further into the Presence of God. You were called to so much more than what this feeble existence has to offer. It is in the future which could be as soon as today for those who let go of the past and grab hold of the Destiny promised by God and insured by Jesus Christ. Capture every thought contradictory to God and cast them down to the pit of hell not to risk being spit from the mouth of Jesus on Judgment day. Passionately love God – you really have nothing to lose. God will heal your broken heart, restore your faith as a firm foundation and you will stand once more even if you wind up on your knees several times along the way! God loves you! He hates the things that happened to you in the darkness and will remove them if you let him! Get over the creeps and walk in to Forever! God is working it all out you just have to move!
Romans 8:28 (NLT)
And we know that God causes everything to work togetherfor the good of those who love God and are called according to his purpose for them.
Revelation 21:5 (NLT)
And the one sitting on the throne said, “Look, I am making everything new!” And then he said to me, “Write this down, for what I tell you is trustworthy and true.”
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