Stepping Into Life
Sometimes the best thing a writer can do is allow someone else to beautifully express a process we each face in some degree. I want to thank Mindy for giving me permission to share her heart-felt post.
Words from Mindy
“Last Fall while everyone was sipping their pumpkin spice lattes & taking their photos in pumpkin patches.. I was at home slipping into a deep depression. Looking back, that season was the most difficult one of my life. I still remember the ache of feeling shattered.. When I think back I can almost feel the surges of doubt that overwhelmed my heart & stole every ounce of my Joy. As the leaves fell from their source of life, it felt like I was dying, on the inside, right along side them. The trees taught me a lesson dying beautifully. Rather than resisting the death that comes with Autumn, they change.. taking on new colors.. right before they fall to the earth. What begins with death, brings new life in the spring. God never leaves us in one season forever. You might be walking through your dark season. Maybe you’re desperate to change. Desperate to learn how to fall to the ground.. You don’t have to do it alone. God will walk you through it.. What I realized during the most painful time of my life was.. death is only the beginning* in the Kingdom of God. You may feel like every part of you is at the end.. that’s where we have the opportunity to die beautifully, to ourselves. To our own will. To our selfishness. To our pride.. You can continue doing things by your own power, through your own strength, or you can get on our knees & give your broken heart + pieces to God. If you do, I can assure you.. You won’t be in this season forever. Change will come. Through your trials, your life will grow.. What begins with death, brings new life in the spring. This fall I’m praising God for that season. Because it was through my darkest moments, that His light shined brightest. I would gladly die beautifully, all over again… for the ability to be used for his glory. I always wanted my life to be tied up in a pretty pink bow of perfection. But I would gladly trade that package of insecurity for open arms of mercy & grace.. For the opportunity to lean into my Father’s love & fully put my Trust in Him. For the wisdom + discernment to speak life. For the strength + boldness to reach into broken situations & touch broken hearts.. I would fall all over again… For the new life I found in You.”
A Note To Self
Autumn’s brilliant colors take my breath away here in West Virginia. I had seen leaves change all my life, but my first fall in West Virginia I found the scenery during my drive breathtaking. When fall faded into winter, dread built up for me as the holidays closed in. I have shared before that the Christmas season was perhaps my least favorite time of the year. The pain and disappointment that invaded my heart and mind. Just as Mindy describes dying beautifully, I had to learn to die to myself. The more I trusted Christ, the less this “holiday pain” invaded my heart, mind and spirit.
I do not know Mindy’s whole story. What caused a beautiful woman with a lovely family to slip into depression that suffocated her of her joy? She does not know my story either. What caused me to shut down and retreat from life from November to mid-January? The solution for both of us and for you is the hope found only in Jesus Christ. When we die to ourselves, we allow Christ to intervene and change our story.
My life is far from perfect, but I have sustained hope and joy because of Jesus Christ. I have strength to face the challenges of work, home and family because I trust that God has me in his hand. I am strengthened. I can do all things through Christ. On my own…I can barely tie my shoes.
Depression and Anxiety
This time of year many suffer from depression and anxiety. We watch the news and see mass shootings and war in other nations. We talk to one another and hear the disillusionment that so many suffer from. A life without Jesus Christ will always lead to hopelessness and fear. If you do not know Jesus as your personal savior I have included a prayer below. Say the prayer…out loud. Believe it in your heart and you will be saved. Then get to church to fellowship, read your bible (or read the bible online) and pray. Do not be intimidated by prayer, it is a conversation between you and God. Nothing is too big or too small for him and he never breaks confidence when we confide in him.
The path to joy begins with truth and a prayer. The truth is God’s word. “We have ALL sinned and come short of the glory of God” No one is better than another. Sin has a payout…it is death. The bible says “the wages of sin is death, bit the gift of God is eternal life through Jesus Christ our Lord.” The Bible gives us hope and tells us that “whosoever shall call upon the name of the Lord shall be saved”. Whosoever….it does not say you good, polite people. Whosoever does not indicate a certain socioeconomic class. Whosoever is anyone…it is everyone. So call on the name of Lord. Here is the prayer.
“Dear Lord Jesus, come into my heart. Forgive me of my sin. Wash me and cleanse me. Set me free. Jesus, thank you for dying for me. I believe that you are risen from the dead and that you’re coming back again for me. Fill me with the Holy Spirit. Give me a passion for the lost, a hunger for the things of God and a holy boldness to preach the gospel of Jesus Christ. I am saved. I am born again. I am forgiven and I’m on my way to Heaven because I have Jesus in my heart. AMEN”
Saying that prayer changes your life. If you said the prayer your sins are all forgiven and you are on your way to Heaven. You have found the hope that ONLY comes from Jesus Christ. If you trust in the Lord…depression and anxiety have no power of you.