How to Break Off a Familiar Spirit During Dire Straits

During Dire Straits, the enemy will often use the spirit of fear to lead a familiar spirit back to you with the hope of getting you in great distress. The good news is, by the power and lead of the Holy Spirit, you can overcome. 

In fact, this is one of the purposes of the Dire Straits. It is like a spiritual masterclass to show you where a familiar spirit attacks your weaknesses so that you can overcome them. 

The Holy Spirit wants to guide you into new habits and patterns so those familiar spirits lose their hold on you. 

Join Rabbi Curt Landry as he provides practical insights on how to break off a familiar spirit that tends to attack during this season—Dire Straits. 

He provides an example of how he and his family broke off a generational curse and gives questions you can ask the Lord to help reveal the roots of these familiar spirits’ entry points. 

If you are struggling to overcome past patterns of thinking, you won’t want to miss this powerful podcast.

Transcription from Podcast (Revised for Readability)


Shalom. Rabbi Curt Landry here. I hope you enjoy Ancient Principles, Kingdom Authority. We try to respond to you as part of the body of Messiah, the body of Christ, and we’re not here for ourselves. We’re here to serve you. And so, I love it when you ask questions. 

Reviewing the Dire Straits

As we approach the 9th of Av, almost to the end of Dire Straits, you ask this, “You often say that we can know when something is of the enemy because it always overplays his hand. What do you mean?” In the last podcast, I talked about the fact that there are seasons when you’re going through Dire Straits. 

I used an example of being on a sailboat. When we lived in Seattle, I went out to a friend of mine’s sailboat. We’re out in Emerald Bay, and the boat was docked in Lake Washington. So to come in, you’d have to go through Ballard Locks. We’d be coming in on the left into the locks. And when you’re going through the locks, it’s fine and dandy if it’s not crowded. It’s all good. But when it is crowded, and there’s a storm and it’s windy, you’ve really got to be at the top of your game. 

And that describes the Dire Strait seasons because once the storm comes, all the boats come in from the bay and are harbored and docked to get out of the storm. So, you have the storm, and then the narrow place gets bogged down with heavy traffic. And it’s one thing, going through the locks at Ballard with two or three other boats. But when you’ve got a bunch going through all different sizes and the wind is moving everything around, it truly is Dire Straits. 

How to Break Off Familiar Spirits During Dire Straits

When the enemy overplays his hand, especially during Dire Straits, write in a journal. 

Take a Piece of Paper…

  • Take a piece of paper and pencil and put a line right down the middle and write “strong” on one side and “weak” on the other.

You can do this any time, especially during stormy seasons when familiar spirits and fear are pressing in and bogging you down in the narrow places.  

Go back and think over the past few weeks. When the storm came [from the boat analogy] and we made a decision to go through the locks, so to say, and go to Lake Washington to dock the boat in a safe place, we knew once we got through that, we could get in there that there’ll still be a storm, but it won’t be anything like it was on the bay. 

Ask Yourself… 

  • Ask yourself, “What were the mental triggers that caused me to go from being strong in my faith to weak and even going into fear?” 

Identify those in your life and put them in a list. 

The enemy is like an animal that can smell fear, like a canine that, if you show fear, then it can smell the fear. And when they smell fear, it causes the canine to operate in fear. The scent of fear causes it to become defensive and operate in fear. This is what we’re talking about in Dire Straits. 

See the Purpose… 

  • The Lord is trying to polish you and give you peace. 

The Lord wants to take you through each season of Dire Straits to polish you so you can be in the storm and have peace. I gave the analogy of your body, soul, spirit, and Holy Spirit in the last podcast when you’re on the boat. The Lord wants you in the middle of the storm to be like Jesus in the boat during the storm. He was asleep in the boat. He wants your body to stay in the lounge chair, remember, with the drink and the umbrella. He wants your mind, will, and emotions to be peaceful.

  • He wants your spirit man to trust the Holy Spirit steering the boat through the locks and not get fearful and tell the Holy Spirit to sit down and say, “I’ll handle this because I’m afraid.” 

Familiar Spirits

When the enemy overplays his hand, the enemy will actually do what is familiar to you. [He sends familiar spirits of fear, rejection, doubt, lack, etc., to find your weak spots so they can land there.] But when they pop up, you can overcome them and cut them off. Not just you but your children. I’m going to give you an example. 

A personal example of cutting off a familiar spirit/generational curse…

In our family, there was a generational curse. Christie, Megann, and I have all had it, and we’ve even seen it try to play out in our grandchildren. And it’s a silly thing, but this is how it works.

Something special’s coming, and we’re going to celebrate. You may have had this in your life. I can remember when Megan was little, she was seven or eight years old. In fact, we were in Seattle at this time. And she wanted to have this special birthday party at the park, and she wanted all of her friends to come and get everybody gathered up. It turns out everybody could come. She was so excited. She had certain games and things that she wanted to do, and us, being good parents and me being a daddy, I wanted to say, “I’m going to make this happen,” and so here it comes. 

We get everything set up, food, games, everything. We had a place at the park reserved. Everything was good to go until a torrential rain weather pattern came into Seattle. Her birthday is in April, and it’s raining. No surprise there was a storm. 

And so there was always this pattern that anytime we planned something special for our family, something would come to “rain on our parade.” And we realized it was spiritual because it happened almost every time. 

I’d win a prize or a goal at work, and something would happen, and something would come and steal the joy of the event. So we’re watching this, and we started realizing this is a spirit. Now, to get back to her birthday party, Christie and I prayed, and literally, there was a portal above the park where there were clear blue skies and gray clouds everywhere. We celebrated with those children, and we prayed, and the rain stopped. 

And once we cleaned up and left, the rain started to pour down again. We called it a party-pooper spirit, where anytime we have something great that’s going to happen, something would steal it. We saw it starting to happen with our grandchildren where things would happen, and then this negative stuff would happen. 

So, you see, that’s when we asked, “Where did that come from?” So, I don’t want to go into the personal thing, but we went through deliverance, found out where that came from to steal our joy in our family line, and it turns out that it was from our parents and the choices they made, and we cut those off. And I can tell you now. We’re not battling those things anymore.

Make a List to Break Off a Familiar Spirit

During a Dire Strait season, make a list and ask these questions…

  • “What triggered me?” Somebody asked me to do something, ask him to help him (let’s say financially), and you were fearful. Maybe you felt led to do it, but the amount brought in a familiar spirit of poverty. 
  • “Where did it come from?” In this example, you would ask about the root of lack somewhere in your life.  


  1. Spend time seeking the Lord.
  2. Pray in tongues.
  3. Go back in time and find out.
  4. Come out of agreement with it in Jesus’ name. 

Being in God’s Will in the Face of Resistance

The enemy always overplays his hand at areas God wants to heal. So if he’s going to overplay his hand, it’s like he tests the weak spots because the Lord wants to heal the weak spots. 

The next question is, “How do we know that we’re in the center of God’s will even when we see obvious displays in our personal life and others say otherwise?”

  • Anytime you choose to head down the path of God’s will, the resistance will come. Anytime you start down the right path, the resistance is your confirmer. 

If you’re going down a path and it’s all rosy, and nothing’s pushing back, more than likely, it’s the enemy just leading you with breadcrumbs down to a trap, and soon there’ll be a hole with a net over it with leaves, and you’re going to be trapped in a pit. Because if everything’s going too smoothly, I’m always a little concerned and ask, “Is this a trap?” 

Because anytime you remotely start to turn your life toward the will of God, then that’s when the fight starts. And the key is experience, time and again, showing the enemy that you won’t back off. 

Story of experience… 

We went to a graduation party, and one of the young men was asking me what’s different now at my age of 68 than at 40. He was in his 40s, and he was successful in business. When I was 40, I was also in business. He asked, “What do you think the biggest difference is now?” And I told him, “I know the difference. The difference is experience.” 

You see, when I was 40, I knew what to do. I knew how to do it. And in my field, I was doing it well, and that got me up one level of result. But now, I’m probably not as good as “what I used to do.” I know what to do, but I have the experience to do it better because experience is the greatest teacher.

During the Dire Straits, if you look at these three weeks, it’s like a spiritual masterclass to show you where your weaknesses are so you can overcome them. Make changes to your habits and patterns so you don’t fear them anymore

And so I think the biggest difference between me and the 40-year-old that I was speaking with, and I see so much of myself in him, and he’s been with me here at House of David for years, that the difference is he doesn’t have the experience yet, he will. But he doesn’t have the experience I have at 68, where I just don’t sweat the small stuff as I did at 40.

At 40, my mind, will, and emotions could imagine all the destruction and the crazy and bizarre stuff that could happen to stop what I was doing even though I was born again and had faith. But at 68, I don’t entertain it.

I don’t know if I’ve lost energy or what, but I don’t entertain those thoughts. It’s like, “Eh, it’s not going to happen.” And all the bizarre, weird stuff will still keep coming at you. It never stops. But if you’re going to overcome, you need to know your whole goal. If we go back to the boat analogy, let the Holy Spirit be the tiller. Let my spirit man trust in that. Let my soul stay in the lounge chair and follow after Him. That’s the key. 

Overcome the Spirit of Fear by Putting Him into Remembrance of His Faithfulness

Your next question is, “How faithful is our God that we can put Him into remembrance of this faithfulness so that we can overcome the spirit of fear and confusion that was tied to keeping us stuck or tied in the old season?” 

First, the only way to learn to trust God is to have a testimony. So when you face fear, put God into remembrance. The scripture says, when you go into the Courts of Heaven, put God into remembrance of His Word (see Isaiah 43:26). 

Prayer of Putting God into Remembrance of His Word…

Say, “Father God, Your Word says, ‘No weapon formed against me shall prosper.’ Every tongue speaking against me from the outside, in my head, anywhere that speaks against Your will, I condemn it. That’s the inheritance of the saints. I’m a saint. That’s my inheritance. I cut it off. I choose to take baby steps forward. I’m going to crawl, walk, run into my future, and, Lord, go with me. Hold my hand, guide me, teach me because I have learned and decreed, may it be written in the Courts of Heaven this day that I choose to follow Your will, not mine, but let my will die, in Yeshua’s name.”

God bless you. It’s so good to have you on Ancient Principles, Kingdom Authority, and I look forward to seeing you in the next podcast. Shalom.


Curt Landry, founder of Curt Landry Ministries, and his wife, Christie, travel extensively, preaching and teaching about the Jewish roots of the Christian faith. Together, their passion is to empower families to live and leave Kingdom legacies and understand their own personal heritage.