Sometimes life is like the pushing a boulder up a mountain. Especially when there is mental illness involved. Especially when there is more than one person in the family with mental illness. Especially when someone in the household decides to do major moving around of furniture from one room to another. Especially when you catch some kind of bug that just drains all energy you might have had. So, I'm sitting in what is supposed to be my sanctuary from the rest of the household. All around me are books and junk left over from the partial moving around of our rec room. I have no doubt that it will eventually be a haven for me, but at this moment it's getting on my every nerve as I try to cope with it. Last night I got maybe three hours of sleep, and I'm tired and irritable. As in, I shouldn't be allowed to talk to people, especially my daughter who suffers from mental illness. So, yet again, I have gotten gruff and hurtful with her because I was wanting some "me" time to decompress after a disturbing experience this morning. Well, it wasn't her fault, she wasn't even there. She's wanting to get out of the house and maybe spend time with people, whether they are friends or not. Me? I want to go hide in my cave. I want to stay as far away from people as possible. Not a good combination, really. It's frustrating that I can't keep my mouth in check when I feel this way. It's devastating that I sometimes do more harm than good in relation to dealing with my daughter.
Sorry to any people I see or deal with today. Just tell me to go to the corner, where it is quiet and not chaotic.
Patience can persuade a prince, and soft speech can break bones.
Proverbs 25:15 [NLT]
This past Sunday, I posted about how God reached to me with love... It was a beautiful day, and God really wanted me back it seems. Through the past year and a half God has broken me down for His glory plenty of times...leaving me very vulnerable to His Word. He can come in very easily, compared to the days, of my teenage rebellion. Yesterday, I crashed pretty hard when the night fell. Depression hit me like a strong ocean tide. Knocked me down pretty hard... I struggled to keep a firm hold on what God spoke to me Sunday... Today is a wee bit different... I'm having some severe ups and downs. There are times I'm so happy, I cannot help but cry and laugh, tending to want to dance and sing... But then I crash and feel as though I'm the lowest of the low. Really now, I just want it to be Sunday again... I want to feel the presence of God in the company of His people. I want to feel that oneness of the Bride again in the breaking of the bread, I want to feel that mist that is the Holy Spirit, dwelling in His house as we sing, I want to hear His Words speak to convict and I want to forget the bitterness I bear and sorrow I have for just one moment while we all pray as one... In this moment I feel so alone, yet not alone... I feel this sad deep burning longing for the Lord to come... and yet I feel Him right here. Almost as if I'm with a friend, and still I'm crying and telling them I miss them. I want the Kingdom to come and I want to advance it. I feel so lighthearted, but a burning ache remains. Many people think me weird when I say this, but I'm Homesick... even when I am under the protection of these four walls and ceiling... White walls with a brown-carpeted concrete floor... I don't feel at home in the apartment that I live in...
I don't feel like I fit in any category when I walk out of these walls. The only category I would at least half-claim as my own is outcast... I walk these wet, cracked streets of concrete and asphalt. The cracks almost a sign of the insanity and sorrow that just shatters what is left of the groaning world. I hear the tears of the world, the lullabies of a million shattered hearts all in one vicinity... With all these faces, they're looking for the same thing I am... to fit in. To find the place where their puzzle piece should be. The unique beauty of their hearts warped in the sin that took hold... Victims, tyrants, prisoners, slaves, warriors, healers, peacemakers, and dictators. A salad of humanity... and it seems in the many faces I'm just one raindrop among this dry land. Is it just me? But this road isn't where I want to walk. My pillow isn't where I want to lay my head. My apartment isn't where I want to be sheltered. My place in the armchair isn't where I want to think... Is it just me or am I the only who cries for the Home where I've never been... Who longs after what I cannot know? Sometimes I feel as if I'm the only one who trying to serve Him with all my heart, holiness often feels like an empty attempt that leads to madness. I can often feel so alone, forgotten, left behind... They say that God remembers me, that I am His desert rose, and object of remembering, but is that the case, when I feel like it is vanity to be pure? This feeling isn't new to me... it was what broke me to almost stop believing, last week. I know He remembers me. And though I'm an alien here, when I come Home, you know where I'm gonna fit in? Right in His arms... I know my voice isn't drown among the sea of cries and tears. I'm not a lost soul on the path to nowhereland... I'm not the forgotten, I'm the choicest part in God's eye... All of His children are.
How lovely is your dwelling place, O Lord of Heaven’s Armies. I long, yes, I faint with longing to enter the courts of the Lord. With my whole being, body and soul, I will shout joyfully to the living God. Even the sparrow finds a home, and the swallow builds her nest and raises her young at a place near your altar, O Lord of Heaven’s Armies, my King and my God! What joy for those who can live in your house, always singing your praises.Interlude
What joy for those whose strength comes from the Lord, who have set their minds on a pilgrimage to Jerusalem. When they walk through the Valley of Weeping, it will become a place of refreshing springs. The autumn rains will clothe it with blessings. They will continue to grow stronger, and each of them will appear before God in Jerusalem.
O Lord God of Heaven’s Armies, hear my prayer. Listen, O God of Jacob. Interlude O God, look with favor upon the king, our shield! Show favor to the one you have anointed.
A single day in your courts is better than a thousand anywhere else! I would rather be a gatekeeper in the house of my God than live the good life in the homes of the wicked. For the Lord God is our sun and our shield. He gives us grace and glory. The Lord will withhold no good thing from those who do what is right. O Lord of Heaven’s Armies, what joy for those who trust in you.
Psalm 84 [NLT]
The Lord replied, “Don’t say, ‘I’m too young,’ for you must go wherever I send you and say whatever I tell you. 8 And don’t be afraid of the people, for I will be with you and will protect you. I, the Lord, have spoken!” --Jeremiah 1:7-8
I went to church this morning. My pastor preached on thepassage above, talking about three main excuses that all people say when they hear God's call for ministry...
1) ministries are for priests alone.
2) "I can't do it, I am inadequate."
I, myself have felt this way before. I felt my call to this ministry for 2 years, until I finally went after it... I had no particular wisdom about the faith I said I believed in, other than what I heard and what I caught on from other's examples... I can honestly say I wasn't the goody-two-shoes Christian girl type by the age of 16... I fell completely away by 17, but still went to church gatherings. I only watched what was around me, and gathered information that way. I never sat down and read the bible on any occasion... So, with all this said, I only believed what others were saying. So, ignorance froze me up, in which I said, "I've got no authority, it's the pastors who do." 2 years later, I was being practically pulverized by a great huge spiritual wrecking ball that destroyed my "cottage of comfort" and uprooted my lies, brought them out into the open, rearranged them, rebuilt me into a fortress, and replanted me elsewhere... that was when I felt my inadequacy of it because of all I had done, what I was-- "I can't do ministry, God wouldn't use some bipolar freak" was a popular excuse that I made. I tended to use my mental illness as a reason to not go into ministry... I also wrestled with the truth, ran from the love, and hid from the change that was being made... Lastly, I was afraid... I was afraid to open up to more scars and to be honest; I still am afraid to continue the ministry... I'll willingly bring my fears about this ministry out into the open... You might as well know!
1) I'm always worried what my family is going to say about what I'm expressing... There's lots of people who go through that fear right?
2) I'm a little hesitant to speak truth, for fear of offending others out there... kind of natural of humanity right?
3) I'm afraid I'll speak a half truth, or a lie that I have come to believe, basically afraid to mislead others... There's many other leaders fear that, right?
4) (and as I said up there...) I'm afraid to have more scars from opening up to others... need I say why?
5) I'm afraid to do or say nothing at all, which with the other fears, typically freezes me up... I'm not only one, I hope...
So, typically all 5 of those fears tend to land me down into procrastination and thinking especially hard...perhaps even over-thinking my next post, until I've ran myself down with my "brainstorming", that I come and write, prepared or not, and I just write what I feel led to write... Still, a little timid to post by the time I finish usually but... I will always keep in mind what the Lord has said to me, and all who call upon His name and obey His commands:
"Don’t be afraid, for I am with you.
Don’t be discouraged, for I am your God.
I will strengthen you and help you.
I will hold you up with my victorious right hand." --Isaiah 41:10
Also, I shall remember that:
"For God has not given us a spirit of fear and timidity, but of power, love, and self-discipline." --2 Timothy 1:7
Some things my mum wrote in her notes for church today is something that I think we all should remember as God's children and so I'd like to share it; "All God's people are responsible to minister the kingdom of God. God supplies the gifts to the people in order to minister. God has arranged all these circumstances to engage in ministry. There are no excuses. God is with you to deliver you. Don't let fears rule the roost. That is not a good reason to not do God's work."