October 28, 2017
New Revised Standard Version (NRSV)
We know that all things work together for good for those who love God, who are called according to his purpose.
Stuck in My Own Hole
Some days no matter what we do, no matter how hard we try, things just do not go the way we want them. Some days we wake up, get out of bed; only to wish we had stayed in bed.
I remember one particular day, a day when my world was turned upside down, and life as I knew it was shattered. You always hear Christians discussing their accomplishments, their victories over defeat… And I wish I could say that I overcame this challenge in my life without faultering.
Instead, I allowed myself to fall further from God, and further from my family and my friends. I let myself fall into a deep depression, one where suicidal thoughts challenged my very existence. Every morning I would wake up crying, and in agony, never knowing the reason for the events that had taken place.
The only claim to fame I have with this, the only claim to victory is that throughout this time of suffering, I never doubted God’s power. I never doubted His love, or that He would take care of me. I never doubted that He cared enough about me to save me from these trials. His love, and the love of my family was the only thing that kept me going throughout that very dark year.
This part of my life I normally do not bring up, nor do I share it publicly often. However, this dark and depressing part of my life taught me many things. It taught me that God wouldn’t give up on me, no matter how far I strayed from Him. It taught me that He wouldn’t stop loving me, simply because I stopped going to church. It taught me that even if I focused on other things, He would still focus on me.
It taught me that I could not heal my own pain, but that only He could. Despite the detour I took, God found me. He brought people into my life who grabbed my hand, and gently lead me back to Him. He put people in my life whom He used to not only get me back where I was before this tragedy, but to make me stronger and a better servant for Him.
And least, but not last, it taught me that no matter how bad something is, or how much pain it causes; God can still use these tragedies to bring joy. Nearly 9 months after this tragedy happened in my life, I talked with a young man. He was around 14 years old, and he too was having a “bad day.” Actually a bad year, everything seemed to be going wrong for him, and nothing seemed to work out. I was going to be one of the last people he talked to, simply because we were friends. He was intending to kill himself, and escape the pain he was in.
Through my own tragedies, God has given me the chance to understand what that pain is like, and the wisdom to know that if we trust Him, He will heal us. If we put our fate in His hands, He will guide us back into the light. And just like the people He placed in my life to save me, I too was able to help this young man (2 Corinthians 1:4).
I remember someone asking, “Why do bad things happen to good people.” The truth is, that an event is only as bad as we let it be. Because no matter how hopeless things may seem, and no matter how lost you may feel… God is there. He is there, and he is using these things to change your life, to make you stronger. He is using these tragedies to show you that no matter how lost you may become, He will never leave you… Even when you rely on your own strength instead of His, He will be there. He is there telling you every step you take, how much He loves you, and that He will always watch out for you.
Nothing can separate you from God’s love, and nothing can overcome His power (Luke 1:37, Proverbs 21:30).