Growing up, I had some clingy friends who couldn’t go away no matter how much I tried. And I am not talking of Monica, Dennis or Mwende kind of friends. I am talking of emptiness, feelings of being lost, and despair kind of friends. Now don’t get me wrong. Don’t think that my childhood was terrible ‘cause I can assure you it wasn’t. But every once in a while I would experience such feelings.
Growing up didn’t change anything. These friends proved they were here to stay. Tired of trying to fight them, I gave up and created space for them. When I got to know Christ, like really know Christ. Many of you may be wondering what on earth I am talking about given the fact that I’ve been brought up in church. A time comes when you get to know God for yourself and you make a conscious decision to pursue an intimate relationship with Him. That’s what I am talking about.
So when I got to know Christ, the first thing He did was to deal with my heart. I can assure you this hasn’t been easy. But I am forever grateful for it. It’s not over yet, I am just grateful for the steps we have taken. I found a purpose in Him. I found myself in Him. It has been an interesting journey and trust me when I say, I’ve never been happier.
When I began this journey, I knew that I was free. Free from memories that tormented me, free from unwanted friends. But it was not so easy.
You know when you get born again and you want to pretend like everything is going on well? You cry yourself to sleep and in the morning you put on some good makeup and show everyone how everything is working out for you. Your heart is breaking but when someone asks, you say everything is okay. You’ve lost someone close to you and it drove you to depression. Everyone keeps telling you to be strong and you very well know it is easier said than done. So you take those sleeping pills as if your life depends on them. You contemplate suicide because honestly, you are just so tired of living. No one seems to notice as hope slowly fades. They say that it’s just a matter of time and the pain will go away. But time seems to have forgotten that you exist…that your pain needs to be taken away. Where does time take pain anyway?
I used to wonder…why would I feel lost and I have Christ in me? Why did that guy who seemed so strong succumb to depression? Why is that worshiper struggling with secret sin? Why do we seem broken?
There’s this song by Tye Tribbett that I have come to love. Some part of it goes like:
Tell me what can I do?
‘Cause I can’t live without you, I can’t live without you
So here’s my heart, here’s my mind
I give you my soul Lord; I need you to take control
Cause I’ve tried it all, tried it on my own but
But what I found is I can’t make it
When I heard the song, I immediately identified with it. it was exactly what I was looking for. I realized how futile it was to try and change things by myself and I was tired of it. This song was a sincere cry unto God. Then I started thinking why Tye could possibly write such a song.
You see, when you are hurting, all you want is to relieve your heart of that pain. We seek relief in different ways depending on the intensity of the pain. There’s someone who just wants a shoulder to cry on, others just want to be left alone. There are even some who will resort to self-harm.
This song reminded me of something…that by yourself you can do nothing. You cannot heal yourself. You may try all ways but alone you cannot do it.
Be encouraged that any time you feel lost, you are found in Christ. You may feel like there is no space on earth anymore for you in the world. But the good news is that there will always be room for you in the Father’s arms.
This knowledge isn’t enough. We know so much but much of this knowledge just sits in our minds, doing nothing. This is the kinda situation where you need to actually activate the truth you know by acting on it.
Let the Lord know how you are feeling. It’s not like He already doesn’t know what you are going through. Confessing it to Him shows your total reliance on Him. It shows that even though things are grim right now, you believe He is the only one who can help you out.
When you are going through a hard time, prayer may seem like a difficult thing to do. I have been in situations where I had heartache and whenever I tried to pray, only tears could come out. The good news is that there are other ways to speak to God. I, for example, love writing. So sometimes when I would find myself unable to utter a word in His presence, I would take my journal and write to God, telling Him how empty I feel inside and how I hate it.
There are people who talk to God like you would a friend. Invite Him to sit with you and start speaking. Lay yourself bare to Him. Others may compose songs as a way of communicating with God. I know of some amazing songs that were written as a way of expressing what the composer was feeling inside. Whenever David felt overwhelmed, he talked to God in psalms. Imagine David wrote most of the beautiful psalms found in the bible. The man after God’s own heart knew the importance of pouring himself out to the only one who could change any situation he found himself in. One good thing is that God hears. Making yourself vulnerable before Him is the beginning of the healing process.
Vulnerability is a state that we hate being in. But you’ve got to trust Him enough to make yourself vulnerable before Him.
The sacrifices of God are a broken spirit,
A broken and a contrite heart—
These, O God, You will not despise.
His word is clear, a broken and a contrite heart, God would not despise. Your mess or your brokenness does not disgust him. His heart goes out for you. He longs to embrace you, to make you whole. He longs to take away the emptiness and fill you with Himself. The world may declare you lost. Yet He says you’re found in Him.
So the next time you feel your heart breaking, and you no longer want to live, look up to him. Self-harm and suicidal thoughts are not the answer. He is.