Dear April

Hey friends!

I wanted to share with you a letter that I wrote to myself in my journal.  Let me set the scene for you:

This whole depression/anxiety thing has been quite a battle…  I mean, for REAL.  The enemy didn’t/doesn’t want to let me go easily.  On July 4th I attended a 4th of July extravaganza event at my church.  The whole setup was amazing and my family was having a great time.  We were eating our picnic dinner when “out of nowhere” a ‘voice’ inside of my head said to me “You’re going to die at this event… something terrible is going to happen and you’re way out here in the country and no one will be able to get to you quick enough.”  Immediately a shock of fear ran through me.  I felt sick and lost my appetite (which I was upset about because I was tearing up some amazing potato salad at the time).  :o)

I carried on though.  Trinity wanted to play on all the kid bouncy things and I wanted to continue in fellowship with all of my sweet friends… so I did. 

The next morning I had to return to work from the long weekend and as I was putting on my makeup a ‘voice’ inside of my head said to me “You should just kill yourself because you’re going to die anyway”.  Talk about caught off guard.  I was putting on makeup and had a blank mind for the most part.  I was stunned by the comment.  Then it came again “Seriously, you should just KILL YOURSELF because you’re going to die one day anyway”.  I knew this was not my thought – that’s why I say a ‘voice’ inside of my head.  It was one more HARD attack because the enemy could see the process of me being delivered and discovering my freedom AND that he has absolutely NO control over me. 

I paniced though…  I drove to work numb and in a fog – I cried.  (Read the blog When I AM WEAK, THEN I AM STRONG from July 9th) This blog tells the rest of the story as far as how God showed me something in His Word and I chose to believe it and the rest of my day was fine.

We had our Cheers Group that evening (our small group from church).  I talked with the ladies about what happened and the ‘voice’ in my head.  They agreed to pray as intercessors for me.  (I love them by the way.)  I felt great that night at small group… it was as if the morning had never happend. 

That night when I got home I wrote this letter to the ‘deceived’ April from the ‘FREE’ April.  I thank the Lord that I haven’t had to reference back to this letter since July 5, 2011 but I came across it just now and wanted to share:

7.5.11

April,

You are 100% normal and okay.  You are just being oppressed right now.  The enemy’s goal is to kill, steal, and destroy – his goal is NO different for YOU!

He cannot enter your mind or possess you… he can only whisper lies in your ear but YOU choose whether to believe those lies or not.  Don’t believe them.  Stand firm and he WILL flee.  I know it seems so hard right now but this WILL pass.  He will hit you with the works – death of your family, suicide thoughts, negative effect on your family because you’re not well, mental issues, unstable, going to lose your job, going to lose your husband and daughter, people will think you’re crazy.  Physical aspects – loss of appetite, sick to stomach, waves of ill feelings.  You may even experience the physical presence of darkness and anxious sensations through your body.

LIES, LIES, LIES, LIES, LIES, LIES!!!!!!!!!!!

DO NOT look that way.  You are a child of God.  Jesus has dies so that YOU could be free from bondage.  God has great plans for your life and has allowed Satan to sift you – but the glory is to God.  He is loosening chains in the backdrop of your life and you will be FREE!

“We will overcome by the blood of the Lamb and the word of our testimony.”

This is all a part of your testimony and will help to bring others to Christ.  You can minister once God pulls this from you … even now He will use you because He uses the weak to lead the strong. 

Stand firm and resolve that you are His precious child.  You are forgiven and so loved.  He knows exactly what you’re going through and knows how hard it is for you – BUT you have His strength in you!  Believe it!  You’re a child of the KING.  You are fearfully and wonderfully made.

Lean on God, resist the devil and he will flee from you.

God’s Word is truer than how you feel and you ARE who God says you are.

Stand firm no matter how tiring.  Stand.

In Freedom,

April

I encourage you to write letters to yourself when you’re feeling good and thinking clear… or have precious friends write letters for you to tell you the TRUTH about yourself.  Stay focused on what’s real.  Resist the enemy and he WILL flee from you.  I promise.  … even better God promises… and He can’t lie.  Hallelujah!!

April

As Iron Sharpens Iron

I remember being 21 years old, new husband, new house, new walk with Christ.  I remember sitting on my porch on beautiful summer nights and crying… feeling lonely… checking my phone every couple of minutes to see if maybe a friend would text me and want to hang or invite me to something.  Nothing.

I remember lying on the floor in our office at home and begging God to give me friends… good friends… REAL friends… the ones that I would hear about through other women.  I never experienced that kind of friendship before but I knew I wanted it so badly.

I’m 26 now and I have some of the MOST AMAZING friends.  God knew exactly what He was doing.  There was SO much change that had to happen in me before I would even know how to handle good friends. 

Expectations.  I remember when I met my friend, Amy – she was such a gift from God that was dropped right into my life through choir at church.  I remember her saying to me, in love,  “Expectation is your word for today… ask God what He wants you to see when it comes to expectations of others.”  Amy is so precious… and she was right!  I feel like that word, Expectation, stayed stamped to my forehead until God dealt with me (and even now I have to be reminded).  Who can really live up to my expectations and who am I to place them on anyone? Now expectations and standards for friendship are different – I do have standards but my expectations were EXPECTING the impossible.

Over time I have learned that setting such firm expectations were my defense mechanism of never allowing me to be hurt.  I would raise the bar and when a friend would begin to reach that bar, I would raise it higher so that they could never reach it. … or I would just be expecting the IMPOSSIBLE from people who never wanted to give ‘that’ much to begin with.  #Twisted

I’m 26 years old.  God has blessed me with the MOST AMAZING friends EVER!  For four months I walked through depression … but never alone.  My Heavenly Father walked me with the whole time and He gave me amazing friends who walked that journey with me.  Their patience, prayer, encouragement, and love leave me speechless. 

God knows the desires of our hearts.  Don’t give up hope.  He’s got something incredible in store for you.  Sometimes we have to turn our outward view inwards for Him to begin rewiring the pieces that are JACKED UP.  I am so grateful for His rewiring skills.  He has taught me how to identify great friends and hold on to them… He has also taught me that some people are no good for my life- and that I can trust Him to handle them as well.  I love them… but He loves them MORE and if they hurt me – I HAVE to get away.

I think I have spent so much time thinking that I am going to represent Christ incorrectly if I decide to depart from friends who do not edify me or build me up… but the reality is I should have been gone  A LONG TIME AGO!  God loves them just as much as He loves me and quite frankly, He doesn’t need my help.  #Relief

I love what Michelle Pillar said recently in a Women’s Bible Study – she said “God doesn’t need our help to maintain His good image.” – Yes, we need to represent Him in a way that is light and fruitful but even when we mess up He is still God and He is still good.

Quality is better than quantity and I love how God has shown me what true friendship looks like.  I was so deceived by my own set expectations and image of what I thought friendship looked like – I would have never been satisfied. BUT GOD… He knows the depths of my heart and has given me the gift of beautiful friendship.

I notice throughout a lot of my prayers with my girlfriends I find myself thanking God for “knitting our hearts together.”  That is something that only HE can do.

Thank you, precious women of God who are standing firm in my life.  I have cried, screamed, and begged for you … then after some years of fine tuning… God gave you to me – and me to you.

He is faithful. Always.

Love,

April Poynter

 

Back From Captivity

So I was reading in my Bible… one of my FAVORITE verses – Jeremiah 29:11 “”For I know the plans I have for you,” declares the LORD, “plans to give you hope and a future.” …

I have quite a large section highlighted in my Bible so I continued to read vs 12 “Then you will call upon me and come and pray to me, and I will listen to you.”

vs 13 “You will seek me and find me when you seek me with all your heart.”

vs 14 “I will be found by you,” declares the LORD.”

But the astounding part is the next line of verse 14 that I have underlined in black pen from a previous time of reading this particular Truth in the Word –

“and will bring you back from captivity.”

Wow!  So, if you keep up with my blogs you know that I walked through a very dark time in my life recently.  I have never felt more bound in all of my life.  As I look back at those months when I felt so hopeless and oppressed and the lies of the enemy were so overwhelming… BUT GOD … God’s Word is true. 

“Then you will call upon me and come and pray to me, and I will listen to you.  You will seek me and find me when you seek me with all your heart.  I will be found by you,” declares the LORD, and will BRING YOU BACK FROM CAPTIVITY.”

Whoa!  I can picture myself with my face down on the floor; screaming and crying… like a soul cry…. A deep agonizing cry….  Pleading with God to take away the confusion, clutter, pain… and just lying there because there was nowhere else to turn… I knew only He had the answers and that only He could deliver me.

He brought me back from captivity. 

I don’t know why God does what He does or why He allows things to happen in our lives – but I do know that He is good – so whatever the reason for pain and suffering brought forth by the enemy of our souls – I know God works it out for good for those who love Him.

Genesis 50:20 NLT – Joseph speaking to his brothers –  20 “You intended to harm me, but God intended it all for good. He brought me to this position so I could save the lives of many people.”

Same goes for the enemy of our souls… He meant evil against me – but God knows what He’s doing and if I can stand here, free, telling you that there is hope for you and call Satan out for the liar that He is – then let’s get it on!!! 

I remember when I was walking through captivity and I felt like NO ONE could understand… no matter how many times I tried to explain it – no one understood me which made me feel even more alone and isolated.  BUT GOD… God understood and even though I felt like He was a million miles away at times – He wasn’t.  He was right there.  He heard every cry and caught every tear… and brought me back from captivity.

Don’t give up!  NO MATTER WHAT! This too shall pass.

Eyes on Jesus,

April

FREE INDEED

Galatians 5

Freedom in Christ

 1 It is for freedom that Christ has set us free. Stand firm, then, and do not let yourselves be burdened again by a yoke of slavery.

 

I feel like at this point in the timeline of my life everything around me is pointing to FREEDOM.  We just celebrated Independence Day, My Pastor has started a series called This Magnificent Freedom, one of the women’s bible study classes I attended recently was called “Defending Our Freedom.  This past Saturday I attended a workshop lead by Neil T. Anderson who is ALL ABOUT teaching others about the freedom in Christ…. I don’t think this is coincidental that I just recently walked out of depression and anxiety.  Coincident …. No,  Jesus.

Galatians 5:1 was and is one of my cling to scriptures… “It is for freedom that Christ has set us free.  Stand firm, then, and do not let yourselves be burdened again by a yoke of slavery.”

If you just read right past that verse and are reading this line now… please look back up and read Galatians 5:1 again and really soak it in.  … I’ll wait for you.

Here is the Dictionary.com definition of  FREE:

–adjective

1.

enjoying personal rights or liberty, as a person who is not in slavery: a land of free people.

2.

pertaining to or reserved for those who enjoy personal liberty: They were thankful to be living on free soil.

verb (used with object)

39.

to make free; set at liberty; release from bondage, imprisonment, or restraint.

 

Are you free?  I can answer that for you, actually.  If you are in Christ – you have accepted Jesus into your heart… you ARE free. 

 

John 8:31-32

New King James Version (NKJV)

The Truth Shall Make You Free

   
31 Then Jesus said to those Jews who believed Him, “If you abide in My word, you are My disciples indeed. 32 And you shall know the truth, and the truth shall make you free.”

What is Jesus saying? He is saying that you have to know the Word of God.  Jesus is THE WORD … Jesus is the ONLY Truth…  so He is saying very simply that we have to know His word, it shows the Truth… and the Truth is what sets you free.

 

So what’s the problem?  I hear so often from people that they can’t read the Bible because they have NO CLUE what it’s talking about… if this is you then PLEASE message me and I’d love to give you some tips on how to better understand the Bible.  If you don’t have a Bible, please message me and I can tell you how to get hooked up with a FREE New Living Translation of the Bible which is very easy to read. 

 

I wanted to let you know that yesterday I was driving in the car and my mind was silent… I realized that there was a time a few months ago when I never thought my mind would EVER be silent again.  I honestly forgot what it was like to have my mind be at rest as I was going throughout my day because I was so overwhelmed by fear and racing thoughts over the past few months. 

 

John 8:36

New International Version (NIV)

36 So if the Son sets you free, you will be free indeed.

I can’t even begin to express through my physical being how grateful I am… I can’t even being to express how much I KNOW God loves me and how important it is to know who I am and where I’m rooted… He has set me free.

 

Are you free?  Do you want your freedom?  It belongs to you – are you ready to take it back and defend it from here on out?  There is hope.  Email me and I’d love to give you more information:

aprilpoynter@gmail.com

 Many Blessings over you,

A

STICKS AND STONES MAY BREAK MY BONES…

“Sticks and stones may break my bones but words will never hurt me.”

What a crock!  I don’t remember any pain from sticks and stones being thrown at me in the past but the pain of mean words still burn in my soul at times.

We have to be careful with our words.  We have to be aware and alert at all times of the things that can come out of our mouths towards another person. 

Proverbs 18:21 “The tongue has the power of life and death”

Ephesians 4:29 “Do not let any unwholesome talk come out of your mouths, but only what is helpful for building others up according to their needs, that it may benefit those who listen.”

Proverbs 12:18 “Reckless words pierce like a sword, but the tongue of the wise brings healing.”

Proverbs 15:4 “The tongue that brings healing is a tree of life, but a deceitful tongue crushes the spirit.”

Titus 3:2 “2 to slander no one, to be peaceable and considerate, and to show true humility toward all men.”

Those are just a few verses that speak of the tongue.  There are TONS in the scriptures that tell us to guard our tongues – especially throughout Proverbs.

I write this blog because I was showering this morning and using the shield of faith to extinguish the fiery darts of the evil one but one of his whispers repeated something that someone had said to me not too long ago… something negative and mean… something that pops in my head from time to time.  The fact that those words do come back around shows me that I have been hurt by what was said and maybe even tempted to believe it at times.  Those. Words. Are. A. Lie. Someone spoke their opinion over me TO me and allowed the enemy to use them as a tool to make me feel less of a child of God than I am. 

I wish those words were never spoken over me or to me but they were.  Now it’s my choice to believe them or cast them away.  I’m choosing to cast them away… even if I have to cast them away 5 million times a day – they are not for me.

2 Corinthians 10:5 “We demolish arguments and every pretension that sets itself up against the knowledge of God, and we take captive every thought to make it obedient to Christ.”

Let me tell you who I am (I stole these from Pastor Steve Berger’s sermon notes):

Matthew 5:13 I am the salt of the earth.

Matthew 5:14 I am the light of the world.

John 1:12 I am a child of God (part of his family – Romans 8:16).

John 15:5 I am part of the true vine, a channel (branch) of Christ’s life.

John 15:15 I am Christ’s friend.

John 15:16 I am chosen and appointed by Christ to produce His fruit.

Romans 6:18 I am a slave of righteousness. (not sin).

Romans 6:22 I am enslaved to God (not the devil).

Romans 8:14,15 I am a son/daughter of God (God is spiritually my Father – Galatians

3:26; 4:6).

Romans 8:17 I am a joint-heir with Christ, sharing His inheritance with Him.

Romans 8:37 I am more than a conqueror through Him who loves me.

1 Corinthians 3:16, 6:19 I am a temple (home) of God. His Spirit (His life) dwells in me.

1 Corinthians 6:17 I am joined (united) to the Lord and am one spirit with Him.

1 Corinthians 12:27 I am a member (part) of Christ’s body. (Ephesians 5:30).

2 Corinthians 5:17 I am a new creation (new person, the old has passed away).

2 Corinthians 5:18,19 I am reconciled to God and am a minister of reconciliation.

Galatians 3:26,28 I am a child of God and one in Christ.

Galatians 4:6,7 I am an heir of God since I am a child of God.

Ephesians 1:1 I am a saint. (1 Corinthians 1:2; Philippians 1:1; and Colossians 1:2).

Ephesians 1:3 I am blessed with every spiritual blessing.

I know that I have been guilty as far as speaking something negative over others in the past and maybe even slip up and do the same in the future but I want to be so aware!  I see how it crushes the spirit… I know first-hand.  I also know that God has called us to build each other up.  I want to be a part of God’s plan!

Be very careful of what you speak out loud today (speaking to myself as well) and take captive any lies that others have spoken over you.

This is from Pastor Steve Berger’s sermon notes as well… but they need to be shared:

We are not how we feel.

• We are not who the devil says we are

• We are not what our insecurities say we are

• We are not what our past says we are

• We are not what our abusive, unloving, uninvolved, disinterested spouse or parent says we are

• We are who God says we are, a child of the Living God

• We are redeemed from our past

• We are secure in our present

• We are hopeful in the future and for eternity

Walking in the Truth,

April

They Will Run And Not Grow Weary

Isaiah 40:31 NIV  “but those who hope in the LORD will renew their strength. They will soar on wings like eagles; they will run and not grow weary, they will walk and not be faint.”

I am so thankful for the renewing of my strength.  Yesterday a couple at church prayed over me and it shook me to the core.  Prayer is so important.  Praying with other Believers is amazing – other people of God agreeing with you and standing with you.  Something that rings in my ears from what they prayed was “Father, we pray that April would stand firm and place her stake in the ground right here.”  … Wow!  The visual that I get from that is too cool. 

I have to tell you – since last Tuesday when I made up my mind that I was going to choose to really believe God and take Him at His Word, I was taking my gift of freedom back, and I was going to stand firm to defend it – I have not slipped back into a whirl of depression AT ALL… not even a little bit.

There is more joy inside of me than ever before.  I am on fire for the Word of God.  I am more confident than I have ever been. I am secure.  I am still standing…and stronger. He has renewed me just like His Word said He would.

I want you to know that if you are feeling weary and worn out – it’s not over yet!  Hang in there!  You have to make a choice right now.  Take back your freedom, defend it because it belongs to you!

On another note:

Reconciliation – Romans 12:18 “If it is possible, as far as it depends on you, live at peace with everyone.”  A couple of weeks ago me and a group of females met together for dinner to discuss some  differences.  We all agreed to meet up and talk through some things.  The dinner started a little rough but ended in peace with laughter.  I know that God’s heart was so happy and I see why He tells us to work things out, to forgive, to move on.  We all sat there face to face and worked out our differences.  Sorry was said to one another. Forgiveness took place.  It was beautiful.

To see women humble themselves before one another and explain miscommunications or say sorry for selfish intentions was such a lovely sight.  I  am glad I got to be apart of it and be reconciled.  I am also glad that every woman offered forgiveness.  It really was amazing.

The enemy works to cause a divide in our friendships – anything to isolate us.  Sad.  How often are we listening to his lies about the people around us who we know LOVE us?  I have an idea… how about from now on instead of discussing issues through text, email, facebook, or even over the phone – get face to face with your friend and talk.  Make sure you have brought the offense before the Lord first, though.  He can help you sort through some of the hurt.  The face to face conversation will go way better than any other form of communication.

Learn from many of my past mistakes – I have lost a lot of friends due to miscommunications, hightened emotions, some hear-say, and the devil’s lies.  I believe everything has worked out just as it should and unfortunately some people chose to no longer be apart of my life as a result of my growing pains – but I believe those who are in my life now are the right ones – the ones that are suppose to be there.  They chose to stand by me and I am forever grateful.  On the other hand – no hard feelings towards the ones who unplugged, I wish them all the best and understand that sometimes we just can’t handle the weight of someone else’s growing pains. 

From this point forward though – If I have anything to do with it – I’m trying to work it out.  People are messy… we are – but what great packages of treasure come with the messiness!  I’ll take it. 

Check your heart – do you need to forgive?  Do you need to reconcile?  “To forgive is to set a prisoner free and then discover that the prisoner was you.” –Lewis B. Smedes.  I love that quote. 

I think that’s all for my brain today.  🙂

In Christ,

April

FOR WHEN I AM WEAK, THEN I AM STRONG

1 Peter 5:8-11
New International Version 1984 (NIV1984)

8 Be self-controlled and alert. Your enemy the devil prowls around like a roaring lion looking for someone to devour. 9 Resist him, standing firm in the faith, because you know that your brothers throughout the world are undergoing the same kind of sufferings.

10 And the God of all grace, who called you to his eternal glory in Christ, after you have suffered a little while, will himself restore you and make you strong, firm and steadfast. 11 To him be the power for ever and ever. Amen.

Wow! God is AMAZING. It’s hard for me to put into words what He has done for me but I will try.

After dealing with paralyzing anxiety for 4 months and being hit with an aftershock of mild depression – life has definitely changed.

I started my new job on June 21st and it is so great. It’s definitely a blessing with God’s hand prints all over it. Trinity is also loving her daycare so that makes going back to work so much easier. Our family is happy.

Everything seemed to be going great and then one morning I woke up and started getting ready for work – then out of nowhere a crazy thought came into my head, negative and terrible… the thought caught me off guard… it scared me…. “Oh no! Not these thoughts again!” I thought to myself as I was putting my makeup on. I froze and my stomach was sick. I felt like I continued through the rest of my day under a thick fog. I had no emotion, I was tired, my mind was racing, I felt hopeless.

I opened the Bible and asked God to show me something. 1 Peter 5:8-10 is where I turned and told me everything I needed to know.

8 Be self-controlled and alert. Your enemy the devil prowls around like a roaring lion looking for someone to devour. 9 Resist him, standing firm in the faith, because you know that your brothers throughout the world are undergoing the same kind of sufferings.

10 And the God of all grace, who called you to his eternal glory in Christ, after you have suffered a little while, will himself restore you and make you strong, firm and steadfast. 11 To him be the power for ever and ever. Amen.

Wow! After reading God’s Word and BELIEVING the Truth … the fog lifted. I mean, immediately lifted. I could see clearly again. It seemed as if something finally clicked into place. This is REAL! You know how you know that God is real and the Bible is real? …. but then you have those moments in the spirit where your natural mind says.. “Whoa! THIS IS REAL! … Like for REAL REAL.” ? Yeah, I had one of those moments.

Tony and I visited a book store a week earlier and I’m pretty sure we spent over an hour in there. He browsed as I hit up the Christian Living section, grabbed a book by Joyce Meyers, found the chapter on depression and sat in the middle of the floor and read an extremely long chapter. Joyce Meyers has dealt with depression in her past so I was excited to read what she had to say. A summary of the chapter I read was like this – smile, praise, worship, move, believe, have faith, stay in God’s Word, Trust God, continue in fellowship with other believers, don’t believe the lies of the enemy. Seems too easy… but I took what I had learned from the chapter and tucked it away in my heart to reflect on.

I had reached out to a sweet friend of mine when I was in the “fog” and told her about how discouraged I was that the bad thoughts had come back and she explained something to me “The thing with strongholds is, this side of heaven we can find freedom from them, but they are never just gone forever. It is our tendency to think, okay God, we have dealt with that, phew! And then we drop our guard over time, and often find ourselves right back on ground we thought we had conquered long ago…Outside of His presence we wander astray right back into our circle of sin.”

My friend was right! Because I was feeling so much freedom, I was still spending time with the Lord but had really dropped my guard in this whole anxiety/depression area.

I feel like God opened the flood gates after I read 1 Peter 5:8-11. I felt like I could understand, finally! This is what it means to pick up your cross DAILY and follow Him.

Months ago the enemy got a toehold in my life because I started to have doubt due to the fact that an athiest had debated me about what I believe and I didn’t feel like I had enough answers. Shortly after, a foothold came about due to my doubt and disbelief… I was spiraling out of control and then once I visited that Minute Clinic (You can read the blog prior to this one if you don’t know that story) such paralyzing fear entered my life that sent me falling downwards – and the devil set up his stronghold on me.

I want you to know how free I am and how free I have always been. God gave me this freedom from the beginning and NO ONE can take it away. Although I have to fight to defend it – it’s mine, it belongs to me, and I refust to give it up.

If Satan can’t have our spirit he will shoot for our souls (mind, will, and emotions). Once he gets a stronghold on those he can shut us down. He binds us and gets us to draw inward so that we are ineffective for the work of the Kingdom.

Every single morning as soon as I wake up – negative thoughts rush over me and I get extremely sick to my stomach. This is new for me because prior to March 1, 2011 I had never ever experienced anything like this. Do you know what I choose to do every morning? I silence the enemy. I have a choice. I can lie there and listen to what the enemy of my soul has to say to me or I can take each thought captive. (2 Corinthians 10:5 NIV We demolish arguments and every pretension that sets itself up against the knowledge of God, and we take captive every thought to make it obedient to Christ.) I choose to take each thought captive. I read God’s Word out loud and I believe it… I then start my morning.

The Word says to resist the enemy and he will flee from you- this is very true. I stand firm and resist him and he goes away… the thoughts go away… and the sick feeling goes away.

I can’t explain it, really… when you’re in that tempting moment of choosing fear it seems like every second is 15 minutes long but then the fog clears. I never allow it to come over me… it’s there waiting for me but I choose not to stick my head in it and carry it with me. I resist it. I give thanks to God and I remember His Word and say it out loud or just reflect on it. Knowing the Truth does set you free.

I told Tony the other day “Some morning I hope to wake up and the thoughts not be there and the sick feeling not be there- but if this is what it takes to keep me trusting the Lord and bringing glory to Him, then so be it.”

(2 Corinthians 12:8-10 NIV Three times I pleaded with the Lord to take it away from me. 9 But he said to me, “My grace is sufficient for you, for my power is made perfect in weakness.” Therefore I will boast all the more gladly about my weaknesses, so that Christ’s power may rest on me. 10 That is why, for Christ’s sake, I delight in weaknesses, in insults, in hardships, in persecutions, in difficulties. For when I am weak, then I am strong.)

I don’t know why God has allowed me to undergo anxiety/depression but I know that I trust Him and I KNOW that His ways are not my ways. I also know that He works out everything for my good and He has plans to give me a hope and a future. I have seen such sweet glimpses of heaven though, as I have walked through this. I have also seen the enemy’s strategy in binding God’s people through anxiety/depression … I never knew how serious and common it is for people to have anxiety/depression. I never knew much about it at all until I started experiencing it myself.

Since I have posted my story I have had people message me or come to me and tell me their story. Some people… I am the first person they have told. Every person I have talked to feels alone. Isolation is definitely from the enemy. He did the same thing to me. Made me feel like I was crazy and if I told anyone I would wind up in a mental institution and lose my family… crazy, huh? Yeah… that’s how much I was believing his lies due to the fear (sin) that had warped my whole outlook.

The people who have reached out to me are desperate to hear good news… to hear there is a way out… to be free!

Let me tell you this – You are FREE! There is a way out and I know you can hardly believe this right now if you are suffering from anxiety/depression and are reading this right now. You feel like I don’t know your story or how serious your anxiety/depression is… you probably feel like I must have dealt with a different type of anxiety/depression because there is no possible way out of yours! … You’re wrong. I felt the same way. The authority that you have through Jesus Christ is WAYYYYY more powerful than any stronghold of anxiety/depression that the enemy has over you right now. It’s not over. You have to CHOOSE to take your freedom back.

If you don’t know Christ and want to know more about Him and His promises, please message me! I would love to tell you more about Him. Your freedom is waiting for you. It belongs to you. The fog that you are in is a lie… it’s not real. I know it’s hard to believe that… but belive it because it’s the truth.

I am so grateful. I am so exited to see how God can be glorified through all of my suffering. I am stoked that I am sealed and belong to the Most High.

If you’re battling these specific demons – hang in there! If you read this just to support me – thank you so much. Your love, support, and encouragement is shining like Christ all over my life. I honor you.

Standing Firm,

April Poynter