Tuesday, July 5, 2011

Salt and Light

Ok - this post is going to be baring a whole lot of myself. Its going to be pretty personal. But, I think I need to get it out for myself. I need to face it. I need to embrace it. And then I need to let Jesus fix it. I need to hand it off - hand off my hurt, hand off my control, hand off my everything, and then not take it back. It won't be mine anymore after this. It will be in His hands.

I struggle with depression. I always have. It has been an issue since childhood, and it hurts me even more now that I am grown because I can see it passed down in ways already to my children - either by genetics or by experience. Depression hurts physically, mentally, emotionally. It affects your family, your friends, your career, your home, your faith, every aspect of your life can be taken over by depression if you let it. The hard part is, when you feel depressed, you do let it. You are too tired to fight. You just give up. I can't tell you how many times when I am going through a hard time with my depression that I just say "I quit". Or "I don't care". Everything falls to bits. When I struggling with my depression, I am not just sad. I am angry. I am jealous. I am hurt. I am hurtful. I am unloving. I am unkind. I am doubtful.

The past several months, my depression has gone from mild and manageable, to pretty severe (for me anyway). I have been ignoring it and just not wanting to deal with it - its easier that way, in a sense. Its hard to explain. But something this past Saturday happened, and I was so humbled, I felt so guilty, I was so embarrassed... and even with all of that, I knew that God was speaking to me through what happened, and that it was a big bop on the head to me to get my act together.

On Saturday we went to an event that was being hosted by a church here in Houston, called the Tabernacle Experience. You can google it and look up more about it, but basically it is an exhibit of a replica of the Jewish Tabernacle, and you get to go through it while listening to a headset explaining the history, the worship, the symbolism, etc. I was SO looking forward to this, which was exciting for me because 1) I haven't been that excited about much of anything lately. And 2) I have been struggling with some things in my faith and I thought this would be something that I could experience physically, mentally, and emotionally, to help me connect to God in a way I haven't been lately. So we went as a family, leaving Will with my in-laws because I thought he was too young to understand, and I didn't want him to be a distraction to others who might be seeking something spiritual from the exhibit. And once we got there, we waited. Forever. I had no idea the wait was going to be this long. And it was so unorganized. People who got there after us were being led through ahead of us. Our group was forgotten in some room and waited 2 hours to get set up and ready to go. I was mad and exhausted. I was no longer looking forward to this, I just wanted to get in and get out! Abby, who is 7, wasn't handling it much better than I was either! Finally headsets were put in our hands for us to get ready to begin the tour. We were next! And then another group was brought in, they actually took our head sets away, and gave them to the other group. I was horrified. I was so ANGRY. I was DONE. And I announced it to Adam, Abby, the people who were taking my headset, and all the people around us. Looking back on it, I am mortified. But in the moment, I was ticked off and ready to bite someone's head off. A woman who worked at the church, approached us and we explained why we couldn't wait any longer - we had already been gone way longer than we had told the inlaws, and we still had to drive home. It was after 1:00 and my child was so hungry I could hear her stomach making horrible sounds. We just couldn't wait any longer. No, we couldn't take a pass to come at a later date because we couldn't get a sitter again and we couldn't drive another 45 minutes to return. Finally they agreed to just walk us through without the headsets, and give us a quick run down just so we could get to SEE the exhibit. Now, I know so far this is about the exhibit, and it sounds like I'm still mad about what happened. I'm not, at least I am not upset with them. I wish they had been better prepared for the crowds so this wouldn't have happened, but if it hadn't happened, then maybe this experience that I needed and has put this new feeling into my heart, wouldn't have happened next. The woman who walked us through, shone with the love of Christ. Everything about this woman showed Christ to me. In her patience, her understanding, her joy, her love and heart for my daughter's experience, her care for me and comfort she gave when I was very upset. I don't know if I have ever met anyone who just.. I mean the only way I can describe it is that she was a light! I know we are to be salt and light in this world, but oh! Now I understand! This light...she just shone. Her face was lit up. The spirit of Christ was just pouring out of her. I felt so ashamed, I felt so in awe, I felt so convicted. And I realized that THIS is who we are ALL meant to be. We are all supposed to be this light, and to shine Christ to all the world! I know that most of my reactions that day to the things that occurred, were very much in part to my depression. But I had been refusing to deal with it. I had been allowing it to cause me to neglect my faith and to not be what my God calls me to be. I am supposed to be this light. And I have not been, and until I allow myself to be healed physically, there is no way I will be able to be this light to the world.

There are so many other things in my mind. So many issues I am struggling and fighting with. But right now, I know that my main focus needs to be on my physical healing, so that I can then begin to allow Christ to work in me, and to let His love shine through me to the world, and those most in need of His grace, mercy, and love.

1 comment:

  1. Kelli, HE can work through you. He can take away all of the hurt the comes with depression. I know you know this. But, I want to encourage you that He is our great counselor. I am living proof! He freed me from my depression. My childhood was an array of hurt, scared, anxious, unknown times. My teenage years weren't much better. But, when I found Christ, and truly let Him work through me, I knew I could do ALL things through Him. I didn't have to just be me. I got to be the person that God created me to be! How wonderful! How amazing!

    Now, I admit, that every now and then I can see it creeping back up on me. And, alot of the times I just want to give up and let it take over. But, then, He always puts this little voice inside me, telling me not to give up. He tells me that He will carry it for me. Then, I usually cry, a lot. We work it out together, me and Him. All of those promises in His Word are for real! Wow! He meant every one. He meant them for me, He meant them for you, He meant them for ALL of us. All we need to do is believe Him! I am so thankful for His amazing love!

    Be strong sister! He will make you new, and you WILL be the person He wants you to be! Just stay on His path.