How to Battle a Spiritual Predator

by | Feb 1, 2013 | Woman

“The fear of public disgrace never forced me to keep silent.” Job 31:34 CEV

During one of my many prayer walks around my subdivision, I couldn’t help but notice that one of my neighbors had a vulture infestation. That’s right—a whole herd (gaggle? flock? committee?) of vultures had taken to lining up across the peak of his roof.

Now, vultures aren’t cute like sparrows or doves; they’re huge, hulking predators with scary, hungry eyes, dagger-like talons, and ominous, sharp beaks that could rip a body to shreds. And often do.

The thing is, vultures eat dead things. They’re raptorial birds that subsist almost entirely on carcasses. So what in the world are those vultures waiting around here for? They wouldn’t be hanging around if there wasn’t plenty to eat. They’d take off for deader pastures.

The more I thought about it, I began to wonder if maybe I don’t have vultures on my own roof. Oh, not the beak-and-feathers kind, but lowlife, spiritual predators. Fearmongers lurking over my shoulder because I keep them well fed with dead stuff. I discard tons of decomposing debris. . .failed relationships, half-cocked ideas that never came to fruition, incomplete projects, abandoned dreams and hopes, good spiritual intentions gasping their last breaths. Rotting, all of them.

A vulture’s smorgasbord of demise, dissolution, and decay.

Yep, they’re up there all right. I’m sure of it. Hovering, waiting to humiliate me by picking at the bones of my failures. To remind me—and the rest of the world—that I blew it. Again.

But I don’t want them stalking me anymore, biding their time until I falter at something else so they can swoop down and sink in their blood-smeared, vulture-y claws. I’m tired of feeling paralyzed, afraid to do anything for fear of doing it wrong.

Can you identify?

I believe that most women, at some point in their lives, are assaulted by the saturating fear of humiliation. Of being completely embarrassed. You may be there right now, wrestling with the nagging, colon-knotting worry that you won’t fit in.  at you’ll look foolish. Or ignorant. Or different.  at you’ll be laughed at, shamed, or ridiculed for something over which you have no control.

And that’s the bottom line, isn’t it? Fear is really about losing control. About things over which we feel powerless sneaking up and whacking us over the head. Things looming in our future, taking shape in the present, or haunting us from the past. Things we might not even be aware of. Things that make us act a certain way for no apparent reason. It’s true—sometimes our adult behavior is influenced by unconscious fears from past events that affect the habits, quirks, and perspectives we have today.

Ghosts from the Past

Take my hat fetish, for example. I’ve worn hats for decades and never really considered why my closet looks like the Cat in the Hat exploded. . .stacks of hats everywhere, clogging wall hooks and overflowing shelves. I just thought I liked hats.

Some women are shoe fanatics or fingernail buffs; I’m a hat girl. I can no more pass up a cute hat than Lady Gaga can pass up a lingerie sale.

But something happened recently that opened my eyes to the real, vulture-induced reason for my headwear addiction. It all started so innocently. I posted a Facebook comment about my kicky new fedora, and a childhood school chum, Vicki, responded with an out-of-the-blue question: “Just curious,
Deb—are you the daughter who never remembered to brush her hair? I started carrying a brush in my purse after your mom (my teacher at the time) told our health class how important it was to keep your hair neat. She mentioned a daughter that she always had to remind of this. . . . Was it you?”

All of a sudden, I was transported back in time, like a scene from a Stephen King movie, to middle school. I began reliving, in writhing agony, a humiliating memory I had apparently blocked. I was a dorky sixth grader at the time and couldn’t have cared less what I looked like.  There were so many better things for a rough-and-tumble tomboy to think about—hitting home runs, riding my bike, torturing my sister—it simply never occurred to me to glance in a mirror when I wasn’t brushing my teeth.

On this particular day, I had quietly slipped into the back of my mother’s health classroom to stick something—I don’t remember what—in her purse. The students’ backs were facing me and I was tiptoeing while holding my breath, trying so hard not to draw attention to myself while Mama was up front teaching.

Suddenly, Mama stopped in the middle of her hygiene lecture and told everyone to turn around and look at my tousled hair as “an example of poor grooming habits.” They were seventh graders—a whole year older than me—and I didn’t know any of them, so I was absolutely mortified. And horror of all horrors, there were at least ten boys in that class. Gulp. I ducked my head and dashed out the door just as the first giggles began to roll across the room.

CHARISMA NEWSLETTERS

Stay up-to-date with current issues, Christian teachings, entertainment news, videos & more.

The latest breaking Christian news you need to know about as soon as it happens.

Prophetic messages from respected leaders & news of how God is moving throughout the world. 


MORE FROM CHARISMA

Why America Must Adopt the Battle Cry of Isaiah

Why America Must Adopt the Battle Cry of Isaiah

A battle cry is used to summon armies to war. A loud, unified shout could intimidate the strongest of enemies. Confidence in battle often tilts the scale toward victory, whereas timidity, fear and cowardliness will surely lead to defeat. In these dreadful times, don’t...

Intentionally Raising a Godly Generation

Intentionally Raising a Godly Generation

Debbie put her faith in Christ at age 11. In fact, her whole family met Jesus at just about the same time. As her parents began growing in their faith, they nurtured growth in their children as well. Family Bible reading, prayer and talking about God’s leading in...

Dream Big: How to Cultivate Divine Revelation While You Sleep

Dream Big: How to Cultivate Divine Revelation While You Sleep

Do you have any dreams from God that you have allowed to fall by the wayside? For some of you, it’s time to dream again. For some of you, it’s time to dust off your previous dreams. For some of you, it’s important to realize God is not late; He’s always on time. For...

Prophecy: God Is Bringing About Swift Turnarounds

Prophecy: God Is Bringing About Swift Turnarounds

In the month of August, God is bringing swift turnarounds so that your hard places will become a wide-open field. God is bringing about divine connections in order to strengthen the body of Christ. He is releasing faith for radical generosity, divine strategy to...

End-Times Truth: The Rapture Reveals a Split Church

End-Times Truth: The Rapture Reveals a Split Church

There are several resurrections and raptures in the Bible. I cannot understand those who argue that because there is no mention of the word "rapture" in the Bible they do not believe in it. They only believe in the Second Coming of the Lord. Some arguments are no...

Charisma Highlights: 7 Abilities for a New Agility in This Era

Charisma Highlights: 7 Abilities for a New Agility in This Era

Following are snippets of the top stories posted on charismamag.com over the past week. We encourage you to visit the links to read the stories in full. 7 Abilities for a New Agility in This Era The Lord first began speaking to me about the release of seven abilities...

As a Believer, Have You Been Hiding During This Culture War?

As a Believer, Have You Been Hiding During This Culture War?

Many years ago, Jesus went up on a mountain, sat down, and spoke to the group he was with: “You are the light of the world. A city that is set on a hill cannot be hidden. Nor do they light a lamp and put it under a basket, but on a lampstand, and it gives light to all...

RECENT ARTICLES

10 Traits of Effective Churches During the Global Pandemic

In the past few years, the global pandemic has exposed the weaknesses of many local churches. Friends from around the world have told me that many churches have closed their doors for good. Although...
The Supernatural Secrets of Real Revival

The Supernatural Secrets of Real Revival

What does an authentic world-igniting revival look like? And, how are the seeds of revival planted? This we can learn from the life and work of William Joseph Seymour—God’s chosen vessel and apostle of the Azusa Street Revival.  Bishop William Joseph Seymour, was a...

Spiritually Speaking, How Healthy Is Your Heart?

Spiritually Speaking, How Healthy Is Your Heart?

Once a year, I go to the doctor and get a check-up. And every time, one of the things they do is check my heart. A good thorough exam will reveal if there are any problems that need to be addressed before a heart condition arises. I believe we need to do the same...

How You Can Begin to Heal From Unanswered Prayer

How You Can Begin to Heal From Unanswered Prayer

The best way to grow in the prophetic is to look at the past. As backwards as that sounds, Revelation 19:10 tells us, “For the testimony of Jesus is the Spirit of Prophecy.” In other translations, this is said, “For the essence of prophecy is to give a clear witness...

Living in the Tension of Two Distinct Worlds

Living in the Tension of Two Distinct Worlds

As a professional counselor, I have consoled hundreds of Christians through some of the most horrific life circumstances. Along with experiencing my own trials in life, it has caused me to deeply ponder the words of Scripture that refer to how we must learn to live in...

Kingdom Economics: Who Do You Trust?

Kingdom Economics: Who Do You Trust?

The Bureau of Economic Analysis (BEA) released its first of three estimates for second quarter Gross Domestic Product (GDP). Second-quarter inflation-adjusted (real) GDP fell at an annual rate of 0.9%, compared to a drop of 1.6% in the first quarter, and pre-report...

Pin It on Pinterest

[class^="wpforms-"]
[class^="wpforms-"]
[class^="wpforms-"]
[class^="wpforms-"]
[class^="wpforms-"]
[class^="wpforms-"]
[class^="wpforms-"]
[class^="wpforms-"]