I mentioned in my last post that I’m having a bit of depression, and that I have a few issues to resolve before I can have a healthier view of myself, my marriage, and the world in general.
In the past, these same problems sent me into a downward spiral of drug abuse, promiscuity, alcoholism, attempts at suicide, and other self-destructive behaviors. I think I have figured out where the main difference lies between my current reactions to these issues and my past reactions.
I’ve got God now.
I know that for some Christians, depression is a more serious issue. I don’t want what I’m about to say to take anything away from that. I don’t want people to think that I’m questioning their faith or relationship with God. I’m still a relatively new Christian, but I’ve been walking with Christ long enough to know that there is depression and then there is Depression. I’m not belittling what I had in the past either. I most definitely had Depression, and I could have it again someday. But this post isn’t really about depression/Depression.
It’s about the reaction. I’m talking about the difference between my reaction to stress before and after becoming a Christian.
Before, facing each morning was often too much to handle. I didn’t think I could get out of bed without the assurance that I would soon be too numb to remember the pain. I spent most of those years as a drugged up zombie, and yet I still felted like I had no skin, like my nerves were exposed and on fire.
But then I got to know God. With all His assurances that He could handle whatever life threw at me (or whatever I threw at life). Including my addictions and my pain and my memory of what caused the pain. He took all my tendencies and changed them up. I figured out that I was making things worse with my reactions to the stress. So I learned new/different reactions. Instead of trying to numb myself, I would let God’s promises of love and protection and mercy wash over me. Instead of focusing on how to avoid the pain, I learned to examine it and look it in the eye and realize that it didn’t have the hold of me that I’d previously thought it had. Instead of running away from my problems, I ran toward God and offered my problems to Him.
And I figured out something.
I only have God-sized problems.
I don’t have to deal with anything that God can’t help me through. How comforting is that?!
Nothing takes God by surprise. Nothing shocks Him. Nothing is impossible for God. He could take away everything that distracts you, everything that tempts you, everything that makes you unhealthy or unhappy. But He doesn’t. Not because He’s a sadist. But because He wants you to come to Him when you have a problem. He wants to help you. He wants to guide you through it and become the One that you know you can rely on. He wants you to trust Him. Thank goodness, He’s trustworthy.
Examine your heart. Are you having any problems that seem too big for you to handle? Run to God, offer Him your struggles and watch as He amazes you.