Gone.

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The hardest part about dealing with mental illness as a Christian is the taboo that I must not be saved enough if I’m still dealing with depression.  I must not know Christ enough if my suicidal ideation is so prevalent.  I should probably pray harder if I’m still dealing with sometimes crippling anxiety.  And although I know that God is completely capable of taking all of these things from us; I also know that I can know Him, I can walk with Him, and I can still preach His love within brokenness.

I am seen as a strong survivor; a warrior.  And I AM THAT.  But, I’m also broken and suffer with mental illness that sometimes knocks me to the ground.  Every great warrior gets knocked down.  The difference between a warrior and someone who stops fighting is that a warrior never backs down.  A warrior fights even when there seems to be nothing left worth fighting for.  They fight to remember why they stood behind what they believed in to begin with.

It’s not easy to not always be the ray of sunshine that people see when they look at you.  I want to be that.  I want to be the joy I so often yell about!  I believe wholeheartedly in all of the positive messages I put into the world.  I want to be the good quotes and the great inspiration.  I want to be the smiles and the cheerleader.  I want to be the one jumping up and down and running along side you as you get to the finish line.  But sometimes God says it isn’t so and He holds me as I struggle to roll out of bed.

I say all of this to simply say that it’s okay if you’re struggling today.  It’s okay if you continue to struggle tomorrow.  But, be a warrior.  Fight every day of your life because I guarantee that you bring much more sunshine than darkness to those around you.  Don’t believe the lies that you’re bringing the world down with you.  People are cheering you on and want you to get back on your feet.  I’m under the rock with you but I’m not staying here.  Take my hand; we can do this together.  You matter.

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