You made all the delicate, inner parts of my body and knit me together in my mother’s womb. Thank you for making me so wonderfully complex! Your workmanship is marvelous - how well I know it.
- Psalm 139: 13-14
Clink. The chain rattled against the lock. I stretched my neck in an attempt to relieve the weight from the chain’s suffocating hold. However, the farther I stretched my neck; the harder I attempted to relieve the pain—the tighter the chain became.
Trying to escape was futile. I’d been chained; I’d been captured.
My captor laughed as I struggled. Not wanting him to know how afraid I was, I looked up. I wanted to look him in the eye; I wanted to see the man who found pleasure in torturing me.
In one movement, I raised my head and gasped as I looked into the eyes of my reflection staring back at me.
I was my own captor. I had chained myself to my own fear.
What was I so afraid of? I was afraid of being alone.
According to the Myers-Briggs personality test, I am an ENFP—a fun-loving, imaginative extravert that thrives being around people. So, the thought of me spending my life alone (without a companion, a spouse) terrified me.
I couldn’t survive.
And, unfortunately, I was right.
I couldn’t survive.
As long as I kept the chain of fear around my neck.
My fear consumed me. But one day, I realized that the only reason I was bound by this fear was because my focus, my identity was on what I thought my life should be.
I should be in a relationship.
I should be planning to get married.
I should be starting my life with someone.
When my focus was solely on the world around me, my fears took control—they kept me bound.
For years, I was chained by this thought, and one day, I couldn’t take it anymore. I couldn’t take the suffocating pressure of the chains.
“I can’t do this anymore,” I yelled at my own reflection. “I won’t let you control my life. You do not define my life. My identity isn’t in my loneliness. My identity is in the One who will never leave. And you will no longer convince me otherwise. From now on, my identity is in Christ—in the One who loves me and wants the best for me.”
The tears stung, and I struggled to breathe. But suddenly, I heard something break. Looking down, I saw that the lock had been broken. I quickly undid the chains. And for the first time, I took a deep breath.
Looking up at the mirror on the wall, I smiled at my reflection. “I’m not alone,” I whispered.
That day, I was freed. Freed from the chains; freed from my fear. Free to live confidently in Christ and relish in the truth that as long as I remember Whose I am, I am never alone.
1. What chains are holding you captive?
2. How can you break these chains today?
Abba Father, Fear has been my captor. I have spent so many years trapped within the confines of my own mind. I no longer want to be chained; I no longer want to hold myself back. My identity isn’t in my fears; my identity isn’t in this world. My identity is in You and Your purpose for my life. Help me to break these chains, Abba. Help me to find freedom. My fears are in Your hands; my loneliness is in Your hands. I love you, Abba. Thank you for never giving up on me, Amen.
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