Woah, what a rollercoaster of a week it has been!
My week started off rocky and shaky when we had a snow day and off from school on Monday. I went to bed Sunday night anxious, and then woke up in a heightened state of anxiety and panic and sort of disconnect from reality. I couldn’t seem to grasp on myself or focus my attention on anything at all, and all I really wanted to do was pray, read my Bible, and lay in bed all day. But I found it hard to even do any of those three things. So I ended up praying with the little strength I had, laying in bed and then getting up again, and then trying to distract myself by hanging out with my nephew and sister and laughing with them until it was time to go to bed. Less than a functional or enjoyable day to say the least.
Praise God, that He knows exactly how much I can and cannot take, and I woke up Tuesday morning feeling confident, refreshed, joyful, alive, focused on Christ: myself. Yeah, this is who I am. Joyful, energetic, kind, compassionate, patient, lover of Jesus above all things. I had a great Tuesday and Wednesday, asking the Lord to reveal what He is teaching me through all of this, and coming up with great intervention ideas and activities for my kiddos in the meantime. I was able to run in the mornings, read my bible with my coffee afterwards and rest in His presence without my racing thoughts, shaking, anxiety, fear or rushing around.
Thursday morning started out alittle rocky but I was able, with Gods’ strength, to pull it together for the work day and my morning routine (workout, read and pray, get ready for work). Thursday afternoon around 4:30, right before I left work, I started feeling this darkness and anxiety settle over me.. I prayed immediately, had my worship jams on my ipod on my office floor as I was assembling and cutting out various pieces of a bunch of interventions I’m in the process of making for my kids. But, I couldn’t seem to stop it from settling over me. The songs seemed to lose their effect on me, I started to feel panicked, scared, and started moving around alot faster and uncoordinated (which always happens when I have a bout like this). I wasn’t able to fix my thoughts on Jesus or just about anything other than, I need to get home now.
Once I got home, nothing improved.. I ate (I seem to rush eating and not really think about what I’m eating when I’m anxious, or forget to eat) and then tried to do some more work on my projects that I brought home while listening to worship music on Pandora with my mom. But that didn’t really help, except one song, “When God ran” by Craig, Phillips & Dean which just about made me cry, which I needed:)
I didn’t sleep barely a wink Thursday night, and I found myself wide awake at 1am with my worship jams on to no big avail, it kind of made me more anxious because I get SO DESPERATE to feel the presence and peace of Jesus and nervous that I have lost Him that it can at times make me feel more despaired than when the anxiety attack started.
I woke up anxious, did my whole 8.5 mile run anxious and literally had to force myself to stay on the treadmill and not get off (what else was I going to do at 4am? I had already left myself an hour and a half to read and pray): and the exercise and running is good for my mental health and blood flow, so I like to do it every morning and keep myself in a good routine. Also, running is such a big part of who I am, and how I relate and talk to God, and I want to keep that going because it makes me feel like me again.
My prayer time was mostly me just crying out to God, crying, and asking Him to help me figure out what is going on and how He is teaching me through this and not only teaching me but LOVING and COMFORTING me through this. Its so important to note lose sight that not every trial is God saying “This needs to become more holy in you” but also “I see how sick you are, my daughter, and I want to LOVE and HOLD you through this- just be held by me.” Through these past 6 weeks and the craziness it has brought, the biggest thing I’ve heard from Jesus was not “You are being trained and refined” (although God is definitely doing that and bringing to light many things that I need to surrender also), but it has been an overwhelming I love you more than you can even comprehend and I want you to know that I see your pain, your hurt, your tears, and I am here to hold you through all of this. I know how much you love me and you are doing a great job.
Man, does it break my heart to wake up most days of the week and not be able to think about my Savior and relate to Him in the way that I am used to. I couldn’t think of anything worse. But the truth is, He is the air I breathe. He is the sun settling over the mounds of white snow outside of my window each morning. He is the smiles I exchange with strangers and people who are hard for me to love that I never used to care about before I met Jesus. He is the laughter and smiles of my students when they walk into my room for therapy and are so excited to see me. He is the warm first sip of coffee on a cold day that brings joy to the deepest parts of my being. He is my moms’ soothing voice on the other end of the phone when I am barely able to talk I am so anxious. He is the only One who is able to handle all of my brokenness, ugliness, sin, shame and fears and turn them into something absolutely, outstandingly beautiful, and the only One that I even want to be around or show my face to on a day like I had today.
He is my Savior. He is my Lord. He is my Rock. He is my Refuge in the storm. He is my Best friend. He is the Lover of my soul. He is my Healer. He is my All in All. He is my Life.
Jesus is the best thing that has ever, and will ever, happen to me. And nothing that happens in my mind or life will ever change the relationship we have or His love for me. Or you. Or any of His children. Because He was perfect for us, we don’t have to be perfect. Because He overcame the evil one for us, we never have to worry about being hurt by evil. We are already seated with Him in heavenly places and will spend an eternity of pain-free living with Him someday.
And that’s enough of a reason for me to face another day, whatever it may bring.
“You have been given fullness in Christ.” – Colossians 2:10