Compassionate Love Blog: Displaying compassion for those who struggle with mental illness (c)2016 Nancy Virden, Always the Fight Ministry
Someone once said to me they are afraid of heaven because it might be boring.
I’ve been afraid before that God might not work things out justly or in the right time.
Have you ever prayed for divine intervention only to worry and scramble for a solution?
Often, I think we want to trust that a Supreme Being has everything under control. When it comes our turn to take a leap of faith, that trust is challenged.
Taking the Dare
If you are a science fiction fan, perhaps you watched Nemesis, a Star Trek Second Generation movie. In it, Captain Picard puts a new contraption to the test. With enemy aliens coming from behind, and Worf firing at will, Picard drives a four-wheeled vehicle way too fast over bumpy and shifting desert sands. The big surprise is when you realize he has remotely commanded a shuttle-type flying machine to angle itself perfectly below the top of a cliff. As he drives wildly toward the edge, it looks like he is taking himself and passengers for a suicide ride. Then, AH! The vehicle lands safely in the back of the spacecraft and off they fly into safety.
Any difficulty may seem like a cliff, whether addiction, divorce, mental illness, financial difficulty, trauma, loneliness, job-related stress, or anything else. We approach a crisis point, a do-or-die choice, and realize we are at the end of known options.
Fear, which is not necessarily the cause, is fuel for depression. Our anxiety level rises. Perhaps our temper is shorter or we are more easily offended. We have to make a quality decision either for peace because God is on the other side of the cliff, or to hang on to fear. If Picard had not driven into what seemed empty space, none of them would have escaped the enemy.
For me, “Hmmm, I wonder if God really exists?” or “Does God care?” are not issues anymore. Developing a surrender relationship with Jesus over my lifetime has negated those types of questions. My doubts look more like, “I wonder if I will have to suffer,” and “Will God rescue me from suffering?”
My doubts are fear-based. I know intellectually God has my best interests at heart; I need to relax and trust that. Situations that used to have ready answers are not so sure presently. Sometimes I wonder if I’ll see the answers I want, have the people in my life I think I need, or if I’m going the right direction. “How much will I have to suffer?”
Here’s the fun fact: every time I have feared, God has been on the other side of the cliff. Every time.
He shows me in little or giant yet always faithful ways that he cares about the details of my life. When I’m ready to run away or hide under the covers or quit, he will drop a “love note” in the form of something only he and I know I need. Just this week, a precise phrase spoken in church, wood for repairs given to me without requesting it, and being unexpectedly paid are reminders that God knows my needs before I ask. Not every gift from God is a permanent fix to my troubles. Each one is a gentle nudge from God who is ready to protect my heart.
All I have to do is run furiously toward him, nosedive into faith, and into his perfect plan.
Today’s Helpful Word
1 John 5
In fact, this is love for God: to keep his commands. And his commands are not burdensome, for everyone born of God overcomes the world. This is the victory that has overcome the world, even our faith. Who is it that overcomes the world? Only the one who believes that Jesus is the Son of God.
– St. John
COMMENTS ARE ALWAYS WELCOME (see tab below)
NOTE: I am not a doctor or mental health professional. I speak only from personal experiences with and observations of mental illness. In no way is this website intended to substitute for professional mental health care.
If you are struggling emotionally today or feeling suicidal, or concerned about someone who is, please call the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline 1-800-273-TALK (8255). Hope and help is yours.