I've been struggling lately...I'm really feeling depressed and am praying not to be swallowed whole by that monster again. I just have to dig my heels in, spend time on my knees...and RESIST. There are 6 factors behind my gloom and each of them alone is enough to make you want to just stay in bed. But I've been in bad spots before and managed to persist and succeed in spite of them; so why should this time be different?
FACT: My God who is in me and around me, knows what he is doing and he is going to work a victory in it. Right now I don't know what form that will take or what it will look like but I know he loves me and whatever garbage I have to plow through is there to strengthen me and to make me more dependent on and intimate with him. The quicker I learn this, hopefully, the shorter will this time of testing be.
FACT: I have many blessings: A house (such as it is); a family ( such as they are) and friends--all around the world, thanks to the internet.. Do not allow yourself (me) to underestimate these blessings. Be grateful and appreciative of each of them.
FACT: I am losing weight (yay!!) and am dealing with my complex medical issues, one at a time...and what looks like a defeat is really a victory and will bring me better health in the long run (I hope).
FACT: God loves me---despite my occasional ingratitude and mess-ups in following where he wants me to go. I have nothing to fear because of this fact. God is in this working a victory for himself and for me. And I can rest secure knowing that HE"S GOT THIS and best of all HE'S GOT ME, held securely in his hands.
FACT: My sadness at losing my mom is really not the most helpful thing (although it is certainly understandable). My dad's example of strength and acceptance is really where I need to be too. He understands that she is no longer suffering and is now healthy and happy in the arms of her Lord and that we will be reunited with her at the end of our journey here. This truly shuts the mouth of sorrow and unlocks the door to Peace.
FACT: my sadness at my inability to celebrate Christmas by decorating and baking is really not valid. The holiday is not about lights and trees. It is about my Lord, coming to earth as a helpless baby to battle the power of death and Judgement. It is about the cross which overshadowed his life and which is where he would win his greatest victory. It's not about presents and not even about family. It's about Him and Me. And Him and You. And he promises us peace and joy because of what he accomplished through his death and resurrection. Christmas Joy has nothing to do with presents and good eats. It is instead, the deep joy we can have --even when our loved ones go to be with him in death-- knowing that they are secure in his love --as am I.
So then. These things are true.
"Finally, brethren, whatsoever things are true, whatsoever things are honest, whatsoever things are just, whatsoever things are pure, whatsoever things are lovely, whatsoever things are of good report; if there be any virtue, and if there be any praise, think on these things."
These. These. are the weapons I have to fight this sadness...to keep me from drowning and throwing in the towel. He is my strength and my salvation.
Are you struggling too? Maybe some of my truths ring true for you as well. HOLD TIGHT to them and battle the lies of the enemy who will tell you that death is a solution. HE is a liar and a murderer--and has been from the beginning. Recognize the battle for what it is and know that Victory is sure.