I debated whether I should wait to write this post at a later time; you know, ease people into my blog. But everything in me was pulled toward this topic. So, be warned: it’s about to get really real.
On May 21st of this year, I was home alone and lower than I’ve felt in a very long time. My mind was a dangerous place. As I sat on the couch, I felt compelled to listen to this song:
After listening/sobbing through the song three or four times, I knew God was calling me to get out a journal and just write everything I was feeling. Journaling is not something that is easy for me; I am a perfectionist by nature and I literally get anxious about starting a journal because I am afraid of ruining a beautiful, blank book. But I obeyed. And what came out wasn’t pretty; but it was raw and real. And I needed to express all of it. Another thing about me is that I sometimes struggle to express my thoughts and feelings verbally. I am an internal thinker and I often fear what people will think of what I have to say. So taking the time to write down what I was going through was important; it was my way of communicating all of the pent up emotions I felt swirling inside of me.
About three pages deep into my journal, I suddenly felt wrapped in the word ‘failure.’ I began sobbing so hard, that I knew all that was left for me was to collapse on the floor. I could not do this anymore. If Jesus did not see me and reach out, I was going to be lost.
As I lay myself out on the floor, I reached out my hands as far as they could stretch. I was symbolically saying, “Here I am, God. Do you see me?!” Two things happened in that moment. First, with my eyes squeezed shut I saw before me a white robe and sandaled feet. That was it. But it was more than enough. I knew, although I could not fully see Him, Jesus was there with me and He saw me fully. It was one of the most powerful moments of my life.
The second thing was more personal. I have always struggled with grasping the fact that Jesus was and is a real person. I prayed, I believed, but it felt very impersonal. I could easily relate to other people from the Bible and believe they were fully human, but Jesus seemed unknowable to me. And in that moment, God reminded me that Jesus dealt with fear. Fear, such a human emotion, was felt in the heart of my savior; how much more real could it get? In the Garden of Gethsemane, Jesus told his disciples, ” My soul is crushed with grief to the point of death.” And later on, He prayed “My Father! If it is possible, let this cup of suffering be taken away from me. Yet I want your will to be done, not mine.”
I cannot tell you the lightness I felt after this encounter. I have never experienced such freedom in my life. He saw me. He sympathized with me. And He loved me, a completely broken person.
I do not write this to say that my life has been beautiful and wonderful ever since that moment. No, in fact, I am feeling quite low today. But I am doing what I know God has shown me will free me. I am speaking up. I am speaking out. And I am holding to the truth that I am loved, now and always.
To read more about Jesus and his experience in the Garden: https://www.biblegateway.com/passage/?search=Matthew+26%3A36-46&version=NLT