My crisis may have been a byproduct of SAD – Seasonal Affective Disorder – this blasted gloominess that begins in the sky, then wraps itself around my soul.
It definitely resulted from an unexpected car repair which set me back almost $700.
And it probably came as a result that today is my mother’s birthday and she won’t remember it until someone reminds her.
Like a pile of jagged circumstances, everything piled up and I suddenly found myself weeping – searching for hope without finding it.
I wailed about the unexpected and uncalled-for circumstances that invaded my life without provocation. Unfair. Not the abundant life I hoped for.
And yes, I knew all the things I needed to do: praise God, read a Psalm, play a hymn on the piano, sing, exercise.
These are the same things I share with women all the time in the ministry where I work. I know what to do when despair comes knocking.
But the usual formulas don’t always work to lift us out of melancholy.
Sometimes we are so accosted by the darkness and the unfairness of life that we struggle to breathe and hope to stay somehow connected to what is right and true – to whatever it is that brings light to our distressed souls.
This time I had to force myself to persevere – to make myself drive to church and answer the same question we all hear every Sunday and so glibly answer – sometimes falsely.
“How are you?”
Then the teacher of our class made a statement that gave me a direction where I could pursue hope. I copied the sentence and spent the rest of the hour doodling around it, grateful for its truth.
“Faith is trusting in the character of God.”
Ah – yes. The character of God is good. He is love. His faithfulness is wrapped in a new batch of mercy every morning. He is the same today as he was a year ago and will be decades from now.
Although I could not, dared not try to find my way out of my hole all by myself, I knew that the character of God would somehow rescue me.
Because that is his job description. The Great Rescuer of Mankind. The one and only one I can solely depend on – even when I can’t feel him.
And that is the crux of it. Hope is not always easy to feel. It is that ethereal cloud beyond the present and tomorrow that helps us believe life will somehow get better.
And the only reason we can hang on to belief is because our faith is built on nothing else than the Savior who came to earth and showed us God Himself in flesh and bone.
It still took several days for me to claw my way back to hope but at least I finally had a rope to cling to. That statement about faith helped me look beyond my mother’s Alzheimer’s, beyond the car problems and beyond the grey skies to find the light encircling my Savior’s heart.
I am grateful.
©2015 RJ Thesman – author of the Reverend G books – http://amzn.to/1rXlCyh