The Lord has been speaking to me about Familiar Spirits the last few weeks. They are visiting me – and many others in recent days. Not only are they visiting many believers who are seeking to gain new ground in their lives, but they are affecting us as a nation, keeping us bound to old mindsets of slavery, fear, and oppression. We must recognize them for what they are in order to repent, do the opposite, and break free.
What are Familiar Spirits?
They are unhealthy mindsets, belief systems, and attitudes that you once conquered in the past that are now being used by the enemy to KEEP you in your past. They are probably in your FAMILY line and they are tools of the enemy to keep you stuck.
In 1 Samuel 28:8, Saul looked to a medium with a Familiar Spirit in order to seek counsel. Due to his impatience with God and personal frustration in a situation where he had no control, he resorted to what seemed familiar to him, thus disqualifying him for his future (vs.18-19). Even though he had banished all the mediums from the land who operated with Familiar Spirits, his personal struggle weakened his resolve and drew him back to unhealthy patterns. He actually thought this Familiar Spirit was a friend – when it wasn’t.
In Psalm 55:12-14, David talks about his “familiar friend” who was taunting him and abusing their friendship. This is the nature of a Familiar Spirit. It becomes so familiar to us, we don’t realize it has become a tool of the enemy to keep us trapped.
I had a dream last week where the Lord revealed this spirit at work. In the dream a dear friend of mine, who is a father-figure to me, grabbed me and wouldn’t let me go. I was very uncomfortable with it and knew it wasn’t healthy. Knowing that this person would never do such a thing in real life, I knew the Lord was showing this as a family/generational spirit that is seeking control. It is something from the past that is revisiting us in order to keep us in the cycle of defeat.
In the past week I have heard from several people who are dealing with issues they thought they already overcame. In many of these cases, I believe the root issue is that of a Familiar Spirit and not of the particular issue that seems to be surfacing. The enemy would love for us to get distracted by re-hashing old issues when they are already dead. It’s the Familiar Spirit that wants to keep dead issues alive.
For me, the Familiar Spirit has manifested as a voice from my past saying that I have to stay a safe distance from people because they will drain me. I have found myself putting up walls that shouldn’t be there and doubting my ability to minister. At one time, this was actually true and I had to learn how to build healthy boundaries. However, I have grown past this as God’s grace has increased on my life. To keep me from gaining ground, however, the enemy brought this issue back, making it seem as if it was still true. It has only caused confusion, turmoil, and a lack of peace. I finally recognized it for what it was and determined to do the exact opposite. I’m finally getting free!
Familiar spirits are only broken when replaced with something else – something new, unfamiliar, and even uncomfortable. We can only do this when we have come from the secret place. This week as I spent time in prayer, I prophesied over myself the new things God has in store for me! The Lord told me to stop listening to the old voices and start speaking a new one. It’s liberating!
If you feel stuck because of familiar feelings of defeat, depression, or hopelessness in any area, consider that it might be a Familiar Spirit. If this is true, here are some simple steps to get free.
- Recognize it for what it is and renounce the work of this Familiar Spirit in your life.
- Repent for agreeing with this spirit and for any self-pity that may have triggered its appearance. It is usually when we become emotionally vulnerable or weak that these spirits will surface. Confess your weakness to the Lord and invite Holy Spirit to come and fill in this gap.
- Begin to speak the exact opposite of what that “voice” is telling you. Prophesy over yourself and declare who you really are in Christ.
- Get out of the familiar rut by changing things up. Do something that is unfamiliar – even uncomfortable, in order to break the status quo.
Even as a nation, I see these Familiar Spirits at work.
There is a Familiar Spirit of SLAVERY that is continuing to wreak division in this country. Women continue to feel enslaved by men and a patriarchal system. Blacks continue to feel enslaved by the Whites. The poor continue to feel enslaved by the rich. Though we must repent for our own sins and ungodly beliefs in these areas, we must also acknowledge an underyling Familiar Spirit that is on this land and determine to break free from it. Rather than assuming these beliefs and feelings are valid, we must ask ourselves is we are simply listening to an echo from the past.
There is also a national Familiar Spirit of FEAR. It has been embedded from the very beginning of this nation’s birth as colonists feared retribution from the Mother Land, pioneers feared for their lives, and native Americans feared for their very existence. Until this underlying Familiar Spirit is recognized and dealt with, we will continue these cycles of slavery, fear, and oppression.
The steps to freedom are the same:
- Repent for agreeing with the ungodly beliefs.
- Repent for self-pity and a victim mentality that has fueled the fire.
- Women must forgive “men” and confess any feelings of “suffrage” they are continuing to harbor against the opposite sex.
- Any feelings of racial discontent and frustration must be confessed, as well as any knee-jerk reaction that has caused one to feel like a victim to another, simply because of race.
- Those who “have not” must repent for any jealousy or offense towards those who “have.”
- Begin to speak in the opposite spirit in order for true reconciliation and healing to happen.
- Look for ways to demonstrate the opposite and determine to create new roads and paths that will bring people together instead of tearing them apart.
We must break free from these Familiar mindsets and see them for the trap they are. If we can get free individually, it will empower us even further to get free nationally. Don’t let fear stop you from breaking new ground and trying new things. That step of faith in a totally new direction may be the key to your breakthrough!
Prophesy your future and prophesy this nation’s inheritance. If we are to claim the Promised Land of God’s kingdom on display, we must take out these Familiar Spirits and pioneer some new paths. Our future depends on it.