I grew up in Central California and I’m afraid that my childhood was pretty run-of-the-mill. I grew up in a Christian home with wonderful parents, and a loving older sister. One thing that made our family unique was that my father was (and still is) a Police Officer. I know that isn’t unheard of, but the way God used my dad’s profession to shape not only my family, but me as well, is what makes my story worth sharing.
I asked Jesus into my heart when I was 12 years old. I heard a sermon at a Christmas service where the preacher was talking about how God can give you peace and joy if you “just get to know him.” That sounded great! I believe that was the day I became a Christian, but like many others, I don’t think my real, personal, loving, and passionate relationship with Christ began until my late teen years.
I craved Joy and Peace because instead of viewing my dad’s job as a Police Officer as cool or awesome, I thought it was scary. That’s it – just plain scary. As a child, I could never understand why my dad would need to take a gun to work. I could never understand how my dad could arrest “bad guys” and they would never follow him home and harm my dad or our family. There were so many questions and blanks to be filled in, but instead of asking my parents for help, I kept quiet and allowed fear to overtake me.
Since the fear and anxiety surrounding my dad’s job went untreated, my capacity to experience peace and joy diminished almost completely. For 10 years God took me on a journey of anxiety, depression, panic attacks, counseling, prescriptions, obsessive-compulsive disorder, post-partum depression and spiritual brokenness. In order for me to find freedom from the weight of my silence, I would have to come to the end of myself. I would have to come to a place so low that literally the only place to look was up.
By the grace of God I have found freedom from my bondage. You will hear more about my journey to healing in my future posts, and my prayer is that it will help others find the hope they need to begin treatment for anxiety and depression. Recently God has been opening doors for me to share my story through writing, so even though I often feel unqualified and unworthy, I will obey and give Him all of the glory.
To hear more about my personal story of anxiety and depression, please visit my website: www.meghanalanis.com
Or you can also purchase my book, “Life Behind His Shield”