When the Bible tells us to “fear not,” is it issuing a command or offering us comfort? That’s a question that author, speaker, mother, and Q Ideas co-founder Rebekah Lyons is uniquely equipped to answer.

In her 2013 memoir Freefall to Fly, Lyons shared her gripping struggle with panic disorder, shedding light on the reality of women’s mental illness both in and beyond the church. Now, in You Are Free (published this February by Zondervan), she’s taking this call one step further, inviting readers to push back against fear by recognizing and living into their God-given spiritual freedom.

On this episode of The Calling, Lyons joins CT managing editor Richard Clark to talk about her latest book, her journey toward freedom, and her calling to minister to others struggling with mental illness.

On the panic attack she remembers most: “I broke down on the curb at the Macy’s parade in front of my kids. That was probably the worst. There was a wall of people—a whole block thick, no cell service—and I couldn’t push through them. I just fell on the ground on the street corner and started sobbing in front of my kids. The old Rebekah would’ve been able to get through that. I just became really aware of my smallness and my weakness.”

On the lingering effects of mental illness: “I had a moment in 2011 when I cried out ‘Rescue me, deliver me—I cannot do this without you.’ And I came out of a panic attack in that moment. I wasn’t expecting it. Sometimes the Lord gives us a story we can’t shut up about. But I also learned that anxiety just doesn’t go away forever. It’s not like there isn’t a fiery dart that’s always ...

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