Wednesday, October 27, 2004
I'm tired of it... I'm tired of being lonely... I'm tired of being all alone in this world... no one to talk to or to hug or to cry on..... no one to cuddle with... no one.... I am hurting really bad.... REALLY bad... I cant take this much longer.... I really need a miracle....
(C)2003-2008, Bob K Mertz - Some Rights Reserved
How incredibly hard it is to do that. And relief does not come all at once. It is like that brief period just before dawn. Many people refer to it as the darkest part of the night, when the coldness has already seeped to the bone. Yet dawn does, indeed, come...though not hastened by our need. It is neither fast nor slow. It follows God's sure hand. The pain comes when we truly surrender to God's plan without precondition—when He performs that wrenching surgery on our soul that for a time makes us wish to cry out in anguish. But it is then that we truly begin to die to ourselves, and rely, with no strength of our own left, upon that life that God has given us...the Holy Spirit whose comfort is never far, but is rarely felt, because we are too ready to comfort ourselves.
I know because I have lived through this and know it intimately. And the life that I now have, that I experience at the hand of God, is beyond what I could have imagined. I though I would never be able to face a companionless existence...no wife to share my pain and hopes, to warm my nights and fill that empty place beside me. Yet I have known a depth of friendship from others that I never truly believed possible, and may never have seen otherwise. But more importantly, I can now call out God's name and feel his nearness, not the emptiness of an infinite void. Will God ever provide me a companion? I don't know. But I am now able to say in a way that I had never been able to before that it is no longer an important consideration to me. Whatever I receive at God's hand will truly be sufficient, because He is, Himself, sufficient.
Somehow, Jesus could cry out, "Eloi, Eloi, lama sabacthani?” (“My God, My God, why have you forsaken me?” in his blackest of times hanging between heaven and earth on a rude cross. He could endure it's horrors, far greater than the physical torture he had received at the hand's of the Romans, because he knew what lay at the other side of his darkest of nights of his soul. That assurance brought him through an agony to great for me to understand. Yet my agony, snall by comparison, allows me to know that pain that others face, not as some abstract concept, but as a frightening, but passing, reality.
Do not feel guilty at the very helplessness that you feel, as though it were some defect of character that you are not suddenly able to "lift yourself up by your bootstraps", and generate the good feelings to lift you our of this pit. To do so would only increase your hurt and rage, and light fighting against the sucking quidksand, hasten your descent. But you do not have to surrender to the darkness either, although the exhaustion of your spirit and the ache of your struggle would tempt you to do so. Much like quicksand, you can force yourself to relax, lean back, and allow those very forces that suck you down to work to lift you up. And God will be there, although His touch is so light in comparison that it sometimes escapes your notice. But over time, that light touch will seem a caress that never lets you go. And your senses will have been trained to hear that still, small voice in the din of your life.
In the meantime, remember Paul's words to the church at Philippi: “Rejoice IN THE LORD always; again I will say, rejoice.”
What else, in fact, do we have to rejoice in in this hard world? Who else is as finally trustworthy, or cares for us as much?
“Let your patient endurance be known to all people, for the Lord is near. Be anxious for nothing, but in everything, with prayer and supplications with thanksgiving, let your requests be known to God.”
For who knows our hearts and fears so well? And who, ALONE, can truly satisfy them?
“And the PEACE of God, which SURPASSES ALL COMPREHENSION, shall guard your hearts and minds in Christ Jesus.”
It is this peace that we long for...that we truly seek.
“Finally, brothers, whatever us true, whatever is honerable, whatever is right, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is of good repurt, if there is any excellence and anything worthy of praise, let your mind dwell on these things.”
Often this is so difficult, and must never be approached as though it were some kind of spiritual euphemism. For in our dark night, the good will seem only dimly visible. But like a lonely candle in the darkness, its light, once noticed, will begin to shine the brighter.
“The things you have learned and received and heard and seen in me, practice these things, and the God of peace shall be with you.”
Often we must go through the motions of a spiritual exercise that seems dry and bereft of comfort. Yet like the Israelites who wandered in the wilderness, when they most needed God, He was there. By cloud, by fire, in the rock whose barrenness was belied when water sprang forth.
Cling to hope, my friend and brother. The day will in fact dawn. It did for me. Seek wise counsel and healing (even if it means “better living through chemistry” as prescribed by a good doctor). And drop me a line, because I have not given up praying for you.
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