This past Sunday morning I woke up feeling rough. I was anxious. I felt insignificant, incompetent, and left behind. Telling you the details of why I might have felt this way will only feed the evil that whispered these false lies into my ear in the first place, so I will refrain as they really don’t matter.
I left the house early for church in search of some alone time. Found myself at a coffee shop, went in, ordered a coffee and sat down. In true Betty form, I had hauled with me more than enough to do – a book, my tablet, my planner, etc. I just sat there for a minute. The place was empty. Just me. I honestly felt like it was kinda hard to breathe. The anxiety was like a chokehold around my neck. I began to pray.
I prayed for my family. I prayed for the ones who treated me wrong and furthered my sense of inadequacy. I began to pray for myself, that God would lift the anxiety – afterall, I had two services to serve at today and lots of peeps to talk to at church…in like 15 minutes. I needed this silliness to end and move on. And then, almost audibly, I began to hear – but Betty, you deserve to feel this way. Look at the sin in your life – this is your punishment. You don’t get to feel better. Suddenly I knew, this was an attack. I was under attack and I knew exactly how to break it.
The enemy is present in our lives. He is watching us. He speaks to us and tells us terrible lies. His strongest desire is for us to do less than our best for the Kingdom of God. 1 Peter 5:8 says “Be alert and of sober mind. Your enemy the devil prowls around like a roaring lion looking for someone to devour.” As a child, I memorized this verse and always imagined a lion walking around me with his mane flowing in the breeze. It was a little comical to me and seemed more of a fantasy. As an adult, I feel his hot breath on the back of my neck. I have something to do for the Kingdom and he wants nothing more than to distract and derail me.
I set my forehead on the table at the coffee shop, and began to speak out loud. Not loudly, but out loud to be sure the enemy could hear me. I said to him, ” In the name of Jesus Christ these feelings of insignificance and being left behind need to go. This is not who God says I am. God says I am fearfully and wonderfully made. That I am important to Him. That I impact Him. That I matter. The feelings of incompetence are lies and I am deciding right now not to believe them.” Something amazing happened. I sat there, still and quiet for a minute. And tears began to flood my eyes and I felt those feelings leave. I physically felt them leave. They HAD to leave!
There is power in the name of Jesus. I can’t say that I instantly felt 100% better and had no further insecurity. But I can say that I felt much better, and by the time I got to church, those feelings were completely gone and stayed away most of the day. There is power in the name of the One who gave it all. I have not always been bold enough to use it – and I should be bolder. He has given us authority over the enemy. (Luke 10:19)
We are in an epic battle against the forces of the enemy. (Ephesians 6:12) God has provided us with the tools and equipment to fight valiantly and courageously. One of those tools..perhaps the easiest to use of all..is the name of Jesus.
Listen to Your Great Name by Natalie Grant: