Wednesday, October 28, 2015

This fresh battle of mine

The emotional upheaval I've been going through lately is kind of like the Loch Ness Monster. I have yet to discover its residence in the deep, but every so often it rears its head above the surface and causes fear and confusion and, later, a big let down and isolation, because I am the only one who sees how truly massive and disruptive it is.

Sometimes, often lately, I feel like I will never be a better wife, mother, Christian. In the words of St Paul:

What I do, I do not understand. For I do not do what I want, but I do what I hate. Romans 7:15

So, then, I discover the principle that when I want to do right, evil is at hand. Romans 7:21 (NAB)

I am battling myself, and that is the hardest battle. I now more fully understand "the enemy within". As I beat back negative thought after negative thought and futile feeling after futile feeling, I am tempted to say my faith is no help at all right now, that I am on a slow, inevitable slide with every now and then a tiny ledge to cling to for a few moments or a few days.

But I know that is not so. My faith is each tiny ledge, each reprieve. My faith means I do not speak all the foolish words I could. It means I stop the thoughts - Thou shall not pass! It means I keep going when I want to give up on myself, a sinner who requires too much work and is too beaten down by the struggle, by her own innumerable foibles.

This past Sunday, one of my days of hope and reprieve, our Gospel reading at church came from Mark 10: 46-52:

As Jesus was leaving Jericho with his disciples and a sizable crowd, Bartimaeus, a blind man, the son of Timaeus, sat by the roadside begging. On hearing that it was Jesus of Nazareth, he began to cry out and say, "Jesus, son of David, have pity on me." And many rebuked him, telling him to be silent. But he kept calling out all the more, "Son of David, have pity on me." Jesus stopped and said, "Call him." So they called the blind man, saying to him, "Take courage, get up, Jesus is calling you." He threw aside his cloak, sprang up, and came to Jesus. Jesus said to him in reply, "What do you want me to do for you?" The blind man replied to him, "Master, I want to see." Jesus told him, "Go your way; your faith has saved you." Immediately he received his sight and followed him on the way. (NAB)


And I found in this passage a personal message from God's living Word. Essentially, I must not give up. I am going through a thing right now, not unlike a spiritual, emotional and mental blindness, but that does not mean I should give up on myself. No, I must call out to Christ all the more. It means I must ignore the thoughts that tell me to be quiet, to sink, because I am not worth the effort, and instead I must recognize the words, thoughts and situations that are plainly saying, "Take courage, get up, Jesus is calling you."

When I spring up to meet Him, and He asks what I want him to do for me, I need only reply, trusting in my faith to save me, "I want to see." And, as our Deacon said in his homily, just like Bartimaeus, when Christ tells me to go my way, I must choose His way.

Miserable one that I am! Who will deliver me from this mortal body? Thanks be to God through Jesus Christ our Lord. Romans 7:24-25




10 comments:

  1. We are our own worst enemy sometimes. I too have been battling negative thought I have brought on myself.

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    1. Ah, it's a hard battle! We know, however that we are in it together. We are never alone in our struggles.

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  2. I have so been there. This year, in fact, has been one of the ones where I'm really hard on myself. Funny story, though. I was battling a tough thing that I went through with a friend for the last 6 months, and after seeing her again, it hurt so much. The next week, I made a choice to just let it go. Note that I'd been praying about it a LOT since seeing her. It just went away - and guess what? So did a good portion of my low self-esteem and lack of confidence! Forgiveness is the key to so much pain, it's stunning. So keep on, and remember that God has your back!

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    1. Yes, that is what I need to remember: God has my back! Yes, I too need to let a lot of things go, I think, and I have to ask myself sometimes, am I holding on to my own garbage? And I need to pray more and more deeply. Yet I trust that my little prayers throughout the day, a sincere cry to my Father and to His Son for aid, are heard. Thank God!

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  3. Oh Hillary, you poor thing, what a horrible thing to go through! I get overwhelming negative voices from time to time and I know how debilitating it is -- had a bad patch earlier this year and needed therapy to escape.

    Please be kind to yourself -- you don't deserve the beating you are giving yourself.

    I don't know if you feel up to it, but this is a page that I think might be relevant to you -- it's on the site my therapist encouraged me to use, so it's legit. http://www.getselfhelp.co.uk/christian.htm

    So much love, and all good wishes for your recovery.

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    1. Clare, God bless you. Your comment and your compassion meant a great deal to me.

      And thank you so much for that link. I will definitely check it out. Much love to you, Hillary

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  4. Hiliary, I love your honesty. Again, I know where you're coming from! Hang in there. Growth takes time but God makes everything beautiful in His time. You'll thrive.

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    1. Yes, perhaps this is a period of painful growth, where I learn to see more clearly. I do trust God to make all thing work for the good.

      Thank you. With your encouragement in Christ, I will thrive.

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  5. Sorry, me again. On Facebook someone left feedback on this post which was critical - and was left as they have a business they were trying to inappropriately promote, masking as encouragement. That made me really, really mad. Don't let anyone tell you how to write when they are asking for money. You're doing an awesome job. God bless you.

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