Thursday, February 19, 2009

That's Where The Power Is

My two year old is starting to say things about being afraid of the dark. Because he was an "unexpected blessing" and the other two are a little older, I was reflecting back to what we did when the other two went through this time frame of fearing the dark, monsters under the bed, etc.

We tried EVERYTHING we could think of with my daughter when she was almost 3. The happy stories and songs before bed, praying together, checking the room/closet before getting into bed, nightlights, music playing, flashlights, "God is Bigger Than the Boogieman" by Veggie Tales, you name it; you can bet we owned it or had tried it. One day it dawned on me that there was one thing we hadn't tried...

The Bible is clear that we are in Spiritual warfare. Ephesians 6:12 "For we wrestle not against flesh and blood, but against principalities, against powers, against the rulers of the darkness of this world, against spiritual wickedness in high places."

That the enemy of our souls seeks to kill, steal and destroy (even women & children...) I Peter 5:8 "Be self-controlled and alert. Your enemy the devil prowls around like a roaring lion looking for someone to devour."

I decided to teach my daughter how to "fight." (In the Spirit.)

Now, I didn't pull out the Bible and show her all of the verses about spiritual warfare; I simply explained to her that God loves us, sent His son to pay the price for our sin (in VERY basic terms - He took your consequence for your behavior) and because He is our Savior; there is power in Jesus's name. (Philippians 2:10 "that at the name of Jesus every knee should bow, in heaven and on earth and under the earth"; even demons fear Him - Mark 5:10, Mark 9:39)

I simply told her the next time she was afraid that there was a monster under her bed, footsteps walking into her room, etc. She should say out loud, "Go away in Jesus Name!!" Even monsters have to obey God. That night, my husband and I were laying there in bed and heard her yell, "Go away in Jesus's Name!" Then silence. She didn't cry, didn't come get us, didn't want to come sleep in our bed. In fact, after that night, her nighttime fears all but stopped.

It worked wonderfully until one day we went over to a friend's house (who had a VERY LARGE dog...) Can you guess what my daughter yelled at the top of her lungs at the dog? ;) Thankfully, it was a friend of mine who was a sister in the Lord so we were able to have a good laugh over it.

Our middle child (Gentle Strength) also did this when he was little. In fact, the other night after we had read a chapter of "The Swiss Family Robinson" where the father and sons encounter a boa constrictor, (great right before bed reading...) He hugged me and we were about to pray when he said, "Mom, I know that there isn't really a snake under my bed; but I'm just a little do I pray about that again?" "The power is in the name and blood of Jesus Christ, Buddy, pray in Jesus' name..."

It's not just children who deal with fear though is it? There are times when my husband is traveling where I will literally leave my Bible open on the nightstand. Times when we are in a situation where there is viable reason to be fearful in our surroundings. Imagined or real; the truth is still the same. There is power in the name and the blood of the Lord Jesus Christ. Here is one of my favorite Scriptures dealing with fear:

2 Timothy 1:7 "For God hath not given us the spirit of fear; but of power, and of love, and of a sound mind."

Peace to you today!



Brittany said...

What a great post. For my kids and me!

Midwest Mommy said...

Oh if I would have heard that while laying in bed my heart would have just melted with the cuteness!

Honey Mommy said...

Thanks. I needed that today. We don't need to hold on to our fears... real or imaginary.

Kathryn said...

Shanda, I laughed out loud at the image of Alexis shouting, "Go away, in Jesus' name!" to the big dog. :-D

What a great and powerful lesson, though.
My four-year-old niece recently sent me a picture that she colored. On it, she wrote (in her little four-year-old squiggly handwriting): "When I am afraid, I will trust in You." (Psalm 56:3). Precious!

Today was such a treat. Let's do it again!

RosyRose said...

You are so right! We cannont see the warfare but we know how to fight it! What a great example of spending time with your daughter showing her how to fight! You are a true sister in the faith!
Love ya!

His Girl said...

One of my twin girls (now 9) has kept a Bible and a flashlight under her pillow since she could read. Even now I can walk by and find her reading the passages we highlighted on fear, then she sighs, turns off the light, and goes back to sleep.

What a great thing you have given your children- instead of teaching them that their mom can solve all their problems, you've taught them how to turn to the only One who is with them always and who has the only power to do anything about it.


Pam D said...

LOVE it! I would say that you have given your children the greatest gift that a parent can give; the knowledge, at a very young age, that Jesus is REAL, and He chases away fear. ALL fear. That's something that most of the people in this country NEED to know right about now; think it might be time for a good old fashioned revival? I loved your verse that you left at my blog... definitely a favorite, and like everything else in The Book, definitely true. Thanks for being "one of my strands"...!

Toia said...

2 Timothy 1:7 was the perfect way to end your post. We have power in the name of Jesus!! Thanks so much for sharing!!

Janice said...

What a great teaching moment. I love those. Even better when we can teach through the scriptures. Thanks for sharing that. It gives me something to think about for my children.

Nanny Goats In Panties said...

I love how kids learn things too well - we forget to include certain boundaries - goodness, we can't think of them all! I laughed when your daughter yelled at the dog. Too funny!

Mikki Black said...

What a great post. I still remember when my Mom first taught me this. (Of course, I was much older than yours, so it's easier to recall)

In response to your comment on my blog -- I cannot even imagine having that sort of $ to have something like that in my backyard. I don't even have GRASS in my backyard. (Not much, anyhow)

joanofalltrades said...

That is definitely my favorite scripture on fear too. Right now more than ever I need to remember to turn to prayer and my bible when I am fearful. Thanks!

seesawfaith said...

What a great post. I agree it is never too early to start teaching your children how to fight against the "powers and principalities".

Thanks so much for stopping by my blog and for agreeing to pray for the teen from out youth group.

His first surgery went well although they are having to keep him fully sedated. They tried to bring him out of it and when he started to come around he tried to pull at all of his tubes and wrappings and such so they put him back under, which is very exciting, because we still have no clue about the extent of brain damage. This at least indicates he is aware of things that are wrong! Praise God! His physical recovery is estimated to be AT LEAST a year. God has already done some AMAZING and AWESOME miracles in this situation and we are believing for a complete mental recovery.


Anonymous said...

I loved this post - so much truth and power... and humor! That is so funny about her yelling 'Go away in Jesus' Name!' Your children know the power and authority they have in His Name, and it is a Truth that will never leave them. What an awesome lesson! May we learn and use the lesson as well as your children.

Melanie Dorsey said...

We did the same thing in our home when our children were little. In fact I think I need to review this with my younger one.
Thanks for a great post.

Busy Mom said...

How sweet--just the other night our youngest was tucked in bed and I reached over to hug and kiss him and he told me not to squish Jesus--he was laying beside him. These are tender moments we need to cherish. I was going to blog about the experience and maybe I should post something so I dont' forget it.