It is Well with my Soul BYU Vocal Point

Sunday, December 6, 2009

Counting Knives?

I'm sure there are those among you whom are familiar with eggshells....The eggshells you tread when there are any expressions of extreme emotion either around or by your mentally ill family members....The eggshells that cause you to perk your ears and listen intently for sounds of trouble after that bedroom door slams shut....The eggshells that inspire you by their sharp edges to hide or to take inventory of all your knives and sharp objects or all instruments of potential self-harm. If you've been there are are there; you'll know exactly what I mean.

I don't think that fear ever entirely goes away. Once a child or spouse has injured themselves; I think that even if years pass without another incident, the uneasiness never entirely leaves.

I never really thought about this before, in the sense that my family must feel this way about ME. I have felt it about others, but have not realized how those who love me must feel when I am gripped by strong negative emotions. Do they caount the knives? Do they hide the razor blades and pills? I have noted that when I am experiencing difficulty; that they limit my access to potentially dangerous medications....but I have not understood the sense of fear that must lie behind that.

In the same way, those who have lived with violence, never lose that cringing or that start of fear that occurs with any loud sound: that impulse to go somewhere and hide from the danger. For those of you with mentally ill family, both of these fears may co-exist; both may be relevant. What are we to do with these feelings?

I was just reading John 14 moments ago. A verse that many of us knows in this chapter is verse 27. In the Complete Jewish Bible version it goes like this: "What I am leaving you is peace. --I am giving you my peace. I don't give the way the world gives. Don't let yourselves be upset or frightened. "
And from verses 11 and 14: "Trust me...If you ask me for something in My name; I will do it."

We need to ask the Lord for His peace in this regard. We cannot keep our loved ones safe: it's impossible. But we can ask Y'shua to do it for us! We can also ask that He quell that rising of anxiety or that panic that we feel. We can refuse to allow ourselves to be upset or frightened as these verses have said.

Choose to trust.

Choose to transfer the burden from your shoulders onto the willing shoulders of God. He has promised to pull the weight of those concerns alongside us. And the weight he gives us in exchange is an easy burden. We need only to pray; to ask; to trust.
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