“For I know the plans I have for you,” declares the LORD,
“plans to prosper you and not to harm you,
plans to give you hope and a future.”
The month of May has required of me to keep my head up as my faith was being tested. A month that started off amazing became a circus act of straddling my depression and my trust that God was and is in control of my life. It was a month of faith.
Faith in healing.
Faith in uncertainty.
Faith in deliverance.
Faith in growth.
I started the month with the anxiousness of sharing my story. I would never have believed that God could use me in a way that He did. It has been nearly a month since that day and I am still touched by the camaraderie I could provide for these women. By telling my story I realized after all these years my faith had kept me. CH Spurgeon once said that trusting God in the light is nothing. It is trusting God in the darkness that calls up your faith. Through my darkness God reminded me that He was still there.
The most trying by far in May was knowing whether or not the path I am on is the right path. I prayed a lot – we prayed a lot – about this path before even choosing to step onto it. It wasn’t a light decision to make. But, at the end of the day our hearts were at ease at the thought of helping children.
The first month as a foster parent felt good. It was rough, new territory and incredibly demanding. But, not for a second did I question whether or not I was ready. Fast forward five months later and the world is different from where I sit. It got down to the point where I wondered if my heart’s want was what I listened to instead of a calling from God.
Struggling with depression for all of my adult life I’ve learned one thing: depression is both a physical and spiritual fight. I’ve learned that when depression takes hold not only does it affect me physically but spiritually too. It’s harder for me to pray. It’s harder for me to get to church. It’s harder for me to have faith.
For me, when depression strikes I have a hard time forming words. Being unable to form words means it’s hard for me to pray. When I can’t pray it’s hard for me to go to God. And when I can’t go to God, well, you get it, I feel kerplunked. My way out has always been to find me time first. Get back to basics. Find a place where I feel I can 100% be. In May it was a trip to Canada. It was an incredibly high-octane stressful trip, but it gave me a chance to step away from all of my responsibilities at home and just be. It was there in Canada as I looked over the bay, I remembered an old quote:
When the devil keeps asking you to look at your past,
there must be something good in the future he doesn’t want you to see.
Sometimes when we are going through a difficult patch in life we have tunnel vision. We get caught up with how narrow the tunnel is, how dark or how absolutely creepy it was that we lose focus on the ladder at arms reach, the torch resting on the wall or the fact that there was already a worn path out. We forget about how our faith in a known God has conquered all of our unknowns. We stumble over and over as we grapple what we try to comprehend on our own.
My struggles in May stemmed from the fact that I stopped leaning on God once I saw how overwhelming the hill was. My mistake. When I realized the storm I was in was a storm He had already weathered and conquered I understood He had already given me the strength to get through it. I just had to take hold. When I became open enough to see the ladder, the torch and the well-worn path was I able to take ahold of my faith and found both healing and comfort.
And so, for the love of self I have learned that I choose faith for it is with faith that God will prepare me for the greater things ahead. xoxo