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Fellow Residents of Cyberspace,

My entire life I have dangerously danced upon the ledge of depression, threatening to teeter over the edge with the slightest whisper of wind. Crippled under this self-inflicted burden. Each breath a reminder of the great debt owed.
My existence consists of mountain top highs and valley lows. I have spent precious little time meandering the level meadows of life. I experience life from either the utmost heights or  from the rock bottom of the abyss. Though the rhythm of life may be at play here, my personality is much to blame for this conundrum.
I am pessimistic by nature, which accounts for many of the needless dark valleys. Beyond the pessimism I possess an insatiable, all-consuming passion for life. If something is not worth 110% of my time, then it’s not worth any of my time. Passion in and of itself is not a bad thing; in fact passion can be a thing of great and lasting beauty.
The problem with passion however, is that it opens the door to extremes. Just as love is the sister to hate, so is joy the sister to sorrow. A passionate heart is susceptible to both extremes. Without someone in whom one can confide, to glean wisdom and perspective from,  these extremes can prove incredibly dangerous. The immense heights of the mountains only magnify the great depths of the valleys until eventually they block out the sun entirely.
As I struggled with depression, I sought help and was met with judgement.
As I sat unsuspecting in the pew, lost in the fray of an internal battle, my pastor at the time unwaveringly proclaimed from the pulpit that depression was the surest sign of selfishness. In his zeal, with that single sentence, he virtually slammed the door in my face, severing the line of communication. Rendering it impossible for me to feel free to seek the help  and guidance I so desperately sought for fear of being accused of selfishness. Instead of offering freedom from my burdens, he only succeeded in pushing me further into the darkness.
In hindsight, I understand that this was not his intention, but at the time I felt so alienated that I walked out of that church never to return. What I failed to realize then, was that even in the church there is an inescapable element of humanity. The Bible clearly states that all fall short – that includes the church. There seems to be some disillusionment about the church today. A misconception that I fell prey to. There is a holier – than – thou mentality that is purely unfounded.
At the end of the day, we must remember that the church is a community of people. People who, on occasion, will inevitably take a misstep. As the body of Christ, we can hope and pray that the light of Christ will blot out the darkness that exists within each of us, but until all flesh dies and only perfected spirit remains we will struggle against the bonds of our humanity.
I share this as a caution to all, but especially to the body of Christ. By God’s grace I was saved from the brink of darkness. A precious few have committed my struggles to a covenant of prayer and I have been freed from the judgement that silenced me. Others have not been so fortunate. Others, when met with judgement, have been hurled heedlessly over the edge of the abyss, never to surface again.
Some things once uttered can never be taken back. There may not be a second chance, so please remember what’s at stake.

Next week I’ll discuss the lack of conversation within the Christian community in regards to these issues that plaque so many.

Until Next Week,

May You Live Each Moment As If It’s Your Last,

Mandy

Weekly Reflections: (Disclaimer: The great depths of my sorrow can only be justly compared to the impressive heights of my joy. If you stay tuned in long enough you’ll begin to see the silver ray of hope in even the darkest of my reflections.)

The Chains that Bind Her

Awake for once in life,

And notice others’ strife.

Remove your blinders now,

This be your solemn vow,

And see the chains that bind.

Metallic links will grind.

They slowly gnaw her bones,

Remind she’s all alone.

The steel embeds her skin,

A scarring deep within.

And ever tighter still,

They’ll never have their fill.

The chains and lock allied,

Insure her voice denied.

A silent scream escapes.

She does accept her fate.

From glassy, screaming eyes,

She sets upon the skies,

Will fall a single tear.

It’s all that’s near and dear.

It slides on down her cheek.

Her soul alone, it speaks.

What has her bound and tight?

It holds with all its might.

She stays awake at night.

She goes without a fight.

She’s always pushed aside.

Against the world she hides.

And link by link by link,

They change the way she thinks.

And one by one by one,

They start to blot the sun.

Without a bit of rest,

She’s locked in this arrest.

And back and forth she rocks.

To just herself she talks.

Her state a living hell,

Her place on earth a cell.

She’s hurt yet no one dares,

Or truly even cares,

To put their life on pause,

And choose to help her cause.

To slow down just enough,

To see she has it rough.

To silence selfish rap,

And see the violent trap.

She slowly fades and dies,

As idle passersby,

Continue passing by,

Ignoring this goodbye.

Another moment more,

A heap upon the floor.

Yet still she hopes and prays,

For help from where she lays.

Is there an ounce of hope?

Enough to help her cope?

Is this a lot to ask?

To love beyond the mask?

Her final breaths are fast,

But wait? What’s that? At last!

Oh, can this truly be?

Did someone really see?

A whisper stirs her ear.

A touch does draw her near.

The wind just like before?

Or hope of something more?

An otherworldly thought,

Is what she always sought.

A single little look,

Is really all it took.

A single little glance,

It gave another chance.

A single little thought,

It saved a life from rot.

A death upon a cross,

It saved a world from loss.

Verse Of The Week:

Death and life are in the power of the tongue, and those who love it will eat its fruits.

– Proverbs 18:21

What I’m Reading:

Eldest – Book Two In the Inheritance Cycle – By Christopher Paolini

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