Breaking the Cycle: Closing the Door to Repeated Battles

warrior women series Dec 07, 2023
woman praying hands

God's Warrior Woman ~ Angela's Story

Do you fight the same battle repeatedly?

At sixteen years old, a teacher in my high school groomed and seduced me into a romantic relationship that lasted nine months. The community adored this popular teacher, and when our involvement became public, students and parents rallied around him with support. A police investigation, DCFS report, and my testimony provided evidence, but a public outcry labeled me a liar.

It took a long time to break free from the shame of that rejection.

 For three decades, I lived my life from the trauma of those events. The fear of rejection affected all my relationships. Even with my husband and closest friends, I experienced a nagging anxiety that if I did something they disagreed with, they would exclude me from their lives without allowing me to fix whatever broke between us.

But David kept thinking to himself, "Someday Saul is going to get me. The best thing I can do is escape to the Philistines. Then Saul will stop hunting for me in Israelite territory, and I will finally be safe." 1 Samuel 27:1 (NLT)

The enemy continuously whispered, "Remember, Angie, you'll never belong anywhere."

I fought the lie of not belonging. Repeatedly, I fought that lie hard. I studied the Bible, grew closer to Christ, and worked relentlessly to believe God's promises. But still, I identified with David in 1 Samuel 27:1 when he flees to the enemy Philistines. The running from the rejection that threatened to destroy me brought exhaustion and the temptation to compromise. I grew weary of it and found myself embracing the shame -- agreeing with the very thing I fought against.

 God will help you offer a sacrifice to make room for His voice.

 The words of a friend helped me receive God's healing presence.

 After a ministry meeting, a colleague inquired about my emotional health. She knew pieces of the story from my past and how it haunted me. She cared about my weight of shame and how it affected my personal and professional decisions. I confessed to her that, once again, I struggled to overcome the lie of worthlessness to believe in my voice, and she asked me an important question.

 "Can you look for the open door?"

 At first, I wouldn't say I liked her inquiry. I didn't want to believe it was possible that I left an open door for the enemy and did this to myself. I loved God and devoted myself to serving Him. How could I be the reason I felt stuck?

 "Three days later, when David and his men arrived home at their town of Ziklag, they found that the Amalekites had made a raid into the Negev and Ziklag; they had crushed Ziklag and burned it to the ground." 1 Samuel 30:6 (NLT)

 It was time to burn the city I'd lived in for so long.

 I often watched movies, television shows, and documentaries about overcoming abuse. I listened to women share stories of being violated and disregarded. I learned from professionals the research on repeated trauma when a woman's story is disbelieved and how it significantly impacts the brain. As I took in this information, I felt empowered and understood. But with my friend's question and God's guidance, I realized the stories were not helping me. They were encouraging my brain to replay the scenes from my own story.

 In the account of David's life, Ziklag is the city the Philistine king gave David and his men to inhabit. They set up residence there, and it became a substitutionary home. It wasn't where they wanted to be, but it provided the façade of security, and it paused the relentless running from Saul of which they were so weary.

 After encountering the Philistine king, David returns to find Ziklag burned. Many good things perished in that raid, but as he looked over the ruins, David realized his error in finding refuge with the enemy. 1 Samuel 30:6 says that David strengthened himself in the Lord his God. He sought renewed power in the One who could provide guidance and victory.

 David closed the open door that kept him close to the enemy.

 You can close the door to the enemy you repeatedly battle.

 When God helped me see the door I left open, I decided to close my door, too. I now abstain from certain television shows and movies. When a news program features a story of a voiceless victim, I guard my heart instead of hungrily devouring the information. If I can't turn away from someone else's story, I do my best to resist putting myself into the details of an account that isn't mine to carry.

 The Philistines came against Israel often. They found new ways to plant seeds of doubt about the provision and protection of God. The enemy of our souls does the same thing. He keeps us focused on what hurts by reminding us of how others let us down. He encourages us to discount God's promises by suggesting He sometimes forgets to care for us. And sometimes, like David, we agree with him and reside in enemy territory.

"Offer sacrifices in the right spirit, and trust the Lord." Psalm 4:5 (NLT)

 You can close the door to the enemy you repeatedly battle.

 Something shifted in David's heart and in mine, too. To strengthen ourselves in Him, it became necessary to surrender something that provided false strength and security. It is a process. I did not undo thirty years of living from shame overnight, but I did submit myself to God's leading, and as I experienced a new level of freedom, my trust in Him grew.

 You are not alone if you repeatedly battle a version of the Philistine army. I hope you will be encouraged today to consider where you might unintentionally align with the enemy's assessment of who you are. Take inventory of any activity or habit that enables you to dwell in that false thinking. Ask God to help you offer it to Him as a sacrifice to make room for His voice. Agreeing with God about who He is and who He says you are in Him will lead you to victory.


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The Warrior Women Series will offer motivation and inspiration through heartfelt stories, illustrating that you can overcome challenges through the powerful combination of prayer and fasting.

Angie is a pastor, Bible teacher, author, podcaster, founder of Steady On ministries, and creator of the Step By Step Bible study method.  The mission of Steady On is to identify the lies we believe, the places we are stuck, and to find Biblical application that helps us move forward.  Angie is a trauma and abuse survivor and speaks openly about her ongoing journey towards deeper healing.
When she's not working, Angie loves planning trips to Walt Disney World, sipping cups of hot tea, and watching medical or crime dramas. She lives in Southern Illinois with her husband, Matt, and two sons.
You can connect with Angie on her website at https://livesteadyon.com Facebook, Instagram, and YouTube.

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