The permission to speak freely by Anne Jackson is an awesome book that talks about how we let our fears stop us from speaking freely about anything. Freely speaking on our thoughts and fears about church, relationships, addictions, depression, family etc. Her single statement “Fear Won” caught my heart. Fear wins out so often over so many things in so many of our lives. This book reminds us that we may never be completely free of fear, but that we can live a courageous life, speaking freely about the issues we have faced or are facing.
Many people struggle with depression and seasons of depression, wondering why they still fight it or are fearful of what others will think about them taking antidepressants etc. She sums it up nicely when talking about seasons of depression saying “feelings of insecurity and worthlessness is a chain I may never be able to break.”
She generously gives the gift of courage by stepping out and speaking out about her addictions, abuse and fear of talking freely about them. She says “something in us begins to come alive in us when we see people overcome fear.” We draw courage from others who, regardless of fear, stand up and speak up.
Sometimes our fears of living our dreams keep up from even taking the first step. Anne puts it this way “Their hearts are fighting for their dreams, yet fear claws away at their spirits, telling them their dreams are impossible.” Sometimes it doesn’t take much more than a single twinge of fear to hold us back.
This book is very uplifting and encouraging. Whether you are fighting seasons of depression, feelings of worthlessness, or anything else that grips your heart in fear, Permission to Speak Freely is sure to encourage you and maybe you’ll find the gift of going 2nd is something you can give to others by sharing your story.
One of my favorite quotes by Anne:
I had now seen the redemption and freedom that occurs when the darkness is forced into the light, disguised as awkwardly spoken words
The audio book is read by Anne Jackson, the author. I feel that we could actually feel more of what she was feeling as she recounts some of what was going through her mind and heart while she was retelling her story. Very well done.
I’d like to thank Christian Audio for the complimentary copy of this book through their Reviewers’ program. Follow Christian Audio on Twitter here. Check their site each month for a free audio book download. Good stuff there!
I had coffee with a good friend this morning who is struggling with depression. It grieved me to see him in the midst of the shadow lands. It’s a hard place to live. I know. I grew up in the shadow lands. Depression is part of my heritage and a frequent part of my life. It’s not unusual for me to spend weeks in the shadow lands before I see the light of a clear day.
It was hard to see my friend struggling. He had never visited the shadow lands before. It’s difficult the first time. Depression is overwhelming if you have never experienced it before. It eats away at your energy, dulls your mind and makes the very nerves of your body tender. Walking through the shadow lands is a skill reluctantly learned, unwillingly done, but a wonderful blessing as you see God work in your life.
I gave my friend some tools to use as he walks through the shadow lands. They are simple things, but they really help. I’m praying for him. I’m praying that he, like David, myself and thousand of others, discovers that God is close beside him. That his rod and staff protect and comfort him as he discovers the shadow lands.
Today he’s just beginning a difficult journey, but as one who has spent years in the shadow lands I was able to encourage him and tell him that God is working wonderfully in his shadow lands. In fact, I think I have found my walk with God even sweeter because of the dark paths of the shadow lands. I hope my friend finds God’s sweet care as well as he walks through these dark days.