War, the unmistakable and continuous fight for your very existence, for your heart, mind, and soul.When everything in your world is so far outside the norm, outside of your control, and the enemy is using everything in your life, loved ones, work, your pets, to attack you at every angle, you live in chaos. If you are lucky, you experience moments of chaos that eventually resolve and you can move forward in life with new knowledge, resilience, and perspectives that will help you succeed. However, for many people, chaos is not an unusual experience, but the definition of their existence. For some people, the battle never ends. It seems as if no matter what you do, no matter where you are in your life, things are always falling apart and you are always fighting to stay afloat.
For whatever reason, I seem to live on the battlefield. There is always something, usually many somethings that are passionately seeking to destroy my heart, my soul, my mind, and sometimes my very life. Living in this state is beyond exhausting. I am a fighter but there are many times in my life where I can’t fight anymore. Where I am so beaten and broken that I can barely breathe, let alone pray for relief. Most days I’m on my face crying pools of tears and can’t even muster the strength to speak. These moments try to draw me into the darkness in which I’ve lived a lot of my life, seeking to drown me. And to be honest, most of the time, there is a period where these things win. Where I can’t find a hint of the light, where hopelessness for change reigns more than the knowledge of God and His purpose and His love.
Fortunately God is aware. His word says He is not blind to our tears and that he counts them and keeps them in a jar (the psalms are full of this truth). Sometimes this knowledge is the one thing that keeps me going forward. Because when no one else sees or cares about the pain I live with, God does and He will ultimately redeem my anguish. This is really the only thing that can break through the despair and give me enough hope to keep fighting one more day.
Ultimately, God is king, He is the creator, the Redeemer, the Comforter and the Healer. In an existence that seems harder and more excruciatingly painful than it needs to be, knowing the One who can heal, redeem, and comfort is counting and holding your tears, silences the chaos within.
I don’t know how to stop the pain, the disappointment, the trauma, from coming, but I do know how to keep my head above water. The answer is, I can’t by myself. In my own power and strength and I would have given up a very long time ago. But my deep and profound knowledge of God and who He wants to be for me, through the power of the Holy Spirit in me, I can wake up another day, I can keep going. Often I am going on full autopilot where I have to stop thinking in order to just do what I need to do, but I’m still going. Even when my heart, my soul and my mind scream out that I am done with everything, God speaks a little louder than the chaos to say “not yet, I have more for you. Hang on my child, there is something better.”
How I wish I could remember these truths and experience Christ’s love and peace in a tangible way, but that is rarely the case. My default is to drown in the darkness until He lifts me up and helps me see the light. I long for the moment when I can experience the pain and destruction that comes at me and immediately fight back the right way and not get overwhelmed. But I am not there yet. I long for the days when I can give myself grace in these moments but due to the nature of these attacks which reinforce the lie that I’m worthless, I’m not there yet. I often beat myself up for not being the right way, adding to what is already beating me up, and that makes me angry at myself again. But I know the truth and I do the hard work required to deal with what is trying to destroy me. And I know, no matter what, the battle ends in victory even if I can’t wield the sword. My God is fighting for me, His warring angels are deep in an intense battle for my soul even when I can’t breathe. Because of this, I can find the strength to get up, to mumble His name, to cry tears to Him and to rest in His hands.