Every now and then I still struggle.
I suppose all that have hurt do. I also have concluded that on this Earth, we all have been hurt in some way. It’s the natural consequence of being human.
I think we all have those times when we feel like a part of us has died, or sometimes…even all of who we thought we were seems to be beyond hope. Those moments in which we are truly lost and stumbling; trying to make it through the day without breaking down. Always a mere minute from tears and the heaviness that only a heart can carry.
This is a part of humanity that gets lost sometimes in the fellowship of Christianity.
We have a natural assumption that once we have been dipped in the baptismal, professed a faith and begged for forgiveness; that we are naturally fixed. After all…God is a BIG god.
Then when we continue our journey in life, we find that hurt, habits and mental anguish is still there.
Walking beside our friends, sitting beside them in the pew; we put on the false face of “all is well.”
Yet, it’s not “all well.” We all need to start facing this, especially as Christians.
We are living in an age that is beginning to accept so many forms of mental illness. We are finally starting to see it as more than a temporary “hiccup” and finding that is something that is treatable beyond the perception of just “changing the way you think.” It affects a body the same as diabetes, it’s real and it’s daily.
There is not a single one of us that has been “finished” by God. It’s a daily walk and for those struggling with mental illness, it’s often a journey they feel like they walk alone. The belief that God should have just fixed them, is a source of shame and often causes them to fall from their path.
Then sometimes…suicide of a believer or a child of a believer.
Although this subject is being discussed more often in churches, it’s still a tender spot of pain and questions. I recently wrote a post called “Suicide – Forgiven?”
For those left behind, the sense of self-imposed guilt and shame tends to isolate them within the Church. It’s one of the few cases in which the victim feels as though they are the murderer. The mental illness that causes the suicide is beyond our comprehension, but not beyond our compassion.
Many don’t get to the point of suicide, although their spirit is broken enough. This doesn’t always mean that they are strengthened by their faith and no longer in danger. It doesn’t always take suicide to die.
As we continue on our path to reach those with a mental illness, we must acknowledge that Christianity does not mean “all is well with my mind.” The mercy from Christ that we receive in our daily battles is a reflection of “all is well with my soul.” The soul and the mind are distinctly different and must be treated as such. We must start looking at those beside us in the pews and realize they may be fighting a horrific battle. We must be willing to know that when we shake hands to greet those around us in worship that we need to touch more than just their hand, we need to touch their hearts.
There should be no shame for those who are struggling with a mental illness inside their faith. There should be an acknowledgement that we are all broken in some manner and be willing to reach beyond the souls and into the minds.
…and frankly…what is past our comprehension should never be beyond our compassion.
Categories: September Diary Entry