Uplifting worship music is playing, the kids are painting with watercolours, and the first full day of homeschool 2018 is off to a great start!
Sounds absolutely blissful, doesn’t it? There is so much that isn’t told in that one sentence. I could post that, and a bunch of pretty pictures, and you’d think I just have this life figured out.
But here’s the thing. I’m going to be really honest with you guys. And vulnerable. Sometimes what you see on social media isn’t the whole story. You may never know the depths of pain someone is experiencing right beside you. It’s so important to remember that and to always be kind & compassionate.
This past weekend I had an anxiety attack that lasted 2 days. I’ve never experienced anything like it before, and I hope I never do again. If you saw me at some point, you probably had no idea. I smiled and laughed and chatted, I baked bread and cooked chilli for a new mom, I snuggled her baby and visited with extended family, I even had a garage sale! And through it all I felt waves of panic that forced me to focus simply on breathing in, breathing out.
Sunday night we went to church, as usual. We go to a church of substantial size and just walking through the doors made me feel even more panicky this time. I’ve never felt that way before – I love my church & the people I see every Sunday. These people are so precious to me, that even my introversion has never held me back in that space. Breathe in, breathe out. One foot in front of the other. Smile & chat. I felt like a robot, a panic-stricken, anxiety-ridden, fake robot.
The service began, and I immediately knew I would be changed and challenged. The topic was on Jesus the Healer.
“Do not be anxious about anything, but in every situation, by prayer and petition, with thanksgiving, present your requests to God.” (Philippians 4:6).
And 3 questions:
- Am I bringing my brokenness to Jesus?
- Do I really WANT to be healed?
- Do I really want what he’s prepared to give?
I don’t usually talk in depth about my faith on this blog; I think I felt like it would narrow my niche too much. But I have to share when really big things like this happen. Because anxiety is real. Depression is real. Suicide is real. But most importantly, to me? Jesus is real. I walked forward and knelt in the front of church and prayed, with tears streaming down my cheeks, ‘Jesus, please take this anxiety and panic away and give me peace.’ The words were whispered, simple, but impassioned and raw. Beautiful, refreshing peace flowed through me, like water on a parched throat. The worship team played over us:
“Walking around these walls
I thought by now they’d fall
But You have never failed me yet
Waiting for change to come
Knowing the battle’s won
For You have never failed me yet…
…I’ve seen You move, come move the mountains
And I believe, I’ll see You do it again” (Do it Again, Elevation Worship)
It’s a new week, a new day. He promises us that, you know. If you’re struggling, bring it to Jesus; He’s the ultimate Healer. I’m not saying you won’t need to see a doctor or fill a prescription. I’m not saying you’ll never fight depression or anxiety. But if our struggle is caused by stress and the need for control; He’s so ready to take it from us and give us peace. And when he does? It’s like a REAL LIFE perfect day.