I’ve battled with anxiety for as long as I can remember. I’ve always been an obsessive thinker but didn’t see the weight of this bad habit until I had a mental breakdown in 2017 that’s taken me nearly 3 years to recover from.
In the beginning of this 3 year period from hell, I had people praying for me All The Time. I had many people, make many promises about how I would be supernaturally healed through their prayers. And how I would never again face this dreaded curse of mental instability.
I believed them. I’ve met people who’ve been instantly cured of addiction, disease and mental illness. I serve a miracle working God. I never doubted that He could.
But when dozens of prayers for my deliverance went unanswered, I started hearing little whispers in mind questioning if God would. Did He want to heal me? Would He leave me in mental torment forever? I heard stories of people who spent their lives in mental institutions. Would I end up as one of them??
The prayers that were supposed to heal me ended up forming a mental bat of bitterness fueled by self pity that I swung at God regularly.
I asked questions like:
“God, you healed them. Why not me?”
“Why do you keep letting this continue?”
After I realized God was using these trials to uproot many deep seated issues I guarded like The Holy Grail I began to ask…
“Can’t you just leave me alone? Plenty of people lead normal lives while they are bitter, angry and negative. Why are you trying to change THAT part of me and not my anxiety?”
I think many of us get to that place where we are comfortable being who we think we are. Negative. Lazy. Angry. Bitter. Judgmental. This list goes on. It’s all we know. While we wish we could change, we don’t necessarily want to do the work it takes to change. It’s easier to say “This is who I am”.
But the truth is, God loves us too much to leave us there. So He lets us struggle. He lets us wrestle with Him, ask tough questions and feel the most gut wrenching pain.
Because the problems we often can see (anxiety in my case) are the symptoms of many other deeply rooted issues that we refuse to deal with. If God had miraculously freed me from anxiety without dealing with my bitterness, anger, self esteem, etc… it wouldn’t be long before my anxiety issues reared their ugly head again.
If there is one thing I’ve learned in the last three years, it’s If God let’s us struggle, he is giving us an opportunity to change. He doesn’t want temporary change, He wants wholeness. He wants you healed FULLY. We can’t become the beautiful, glowing jewels of His eye without first going through the fire that burns all the junk away.
He lets us struggle, because without pain we won’t face the things we are afraid of….
Or are complacent about…
Or believe we can’t change.
If God took every painful circumstance out of our lives, we’d be free of hard situations but not negative mindsets that continually create them.
God let’s us struggle because some things can only be learned the hard way. Sometimes our refusal to change keeps us stuck, but God let’s us stay there because He is patient and kind and gently pressing on the issues He most wants to set us free from.
After years of hard work, lots of counseling and finally seeing growth, I no longer want God to leave me alone. I don’t want to be like those people who stay bitter and self righteous their entire lives.
I am grateful He let me hurt. I’m grateful He let me struggle. I’ve found that as the pain is subsiding, so are the other evils I clung to for so long. When bitterness, anger and pride began to lose their footing, I saw a well spring of joy, peace & patience bubble to the surface of my heart.
God let me struggle. He let the fire of refinement burn away the garbage the world layered on me and I rolled around in for far too long. When the smoke cleared, what I noticed is, I found myself. God removed the garbage and revealed the prized possession He created me to be.
I’m proud of the work I’ve done.
I’m proud of who I am.
I’m glad God didn’t let me stay where I was at and showed me who I was really meant to be.