The storm drenched clouds of depression were no strangers to me throughout my life, but when the darkness began descending again in 2004, I was unprepared. Within months I found myself completely weak and helpless, trapped in a prison which seemed impossible to escape. The unfolding of those weeks and months was the most horrific, yet beautiful journey in my life.
As a Christ follower, I found myself in what can only be described as a battle for my soul. All I believed about God and His care for His children was shaken. Who was this God who allowed such unrelenting mental and emotional torture? What purpose did this betrayal of my mind have? I wasn’t living. I was existing within a broken body and mind. And for what? To wake up another day and do it all over again? Hopelessness and despair colored my days repeatedly as these and countless other questions spilled from my lips. Weeks turned into months. Then came the anger, brought forth from living in such agony. What did He think I was made of that I could endure this pain? “God, you are cruel,” I told Him one day. I despised myself for the faithless turmoil within, but could not deny I felt abandoned by God.
And yet, I clung to Him. The very One with whom I was wrestling was also the One who whispered in my darkness. It was a beautiful interweaving of God’s love, compassion, mercy and faithfulness through the midnight of my life. Later on, I began to refer to His whispers as a “romance from God” – a specific instance in which He would clearly show me He loved me, that I was valuable and He was fighting for me. God reached out to kiss my agony. If only I could find the words to convey the richness of those intimate moments with God. There was something very deep and sacred about how He met me on the path of suffering. Experiencing His faithfulness was life-saving.
In October 2006, I seemed to turn a corner, emerging from crisis into more manageable days. Staying close to God every day was a must in order for me to choose contentment and live the life of abundance He promises.
God is unpredictable, mysterious and unsafe to me. He is also sovereign, loving and faithful. This storm-tossed season of life was not a mistake. I was always in His faithful care. Such biblical truths slowly became a foundational resting place. Did I always believe this? No. I continued to fight for my faith, to wrestle with God in the darkness, and to wait for Him to whisper His romance when my heart found it hard to trust. But I pressed on. God, in His perfect holiness, has continued interweaving the threads of my life into a tapestry that will take my breath away when it is revealed.