I am so thankful for my friends and family! You guys are so precious to me, and I really appreciate your love, support, and prayers for me in the battle that I shared about in my previous post. It means so much to me to have people who understand and will support me in prayer.
This has been a long road, and I believe it will still be a long road before I reach the end of this particular struggle. This particular season, though, the battle has just intensified, and I find myself making one step forward, two steps back, a half a step forward, three steps back... I'm really trying to at least keep FACING the right direction, though, even if I am moving backward sometimes. A huge part of keeping myself facing the right direction is knowing what is truth and believing it. That sounds simple, but I really think it's the crux of my struggle, at least the emotional and mental facets of it.
So in my prayers and meditation over WHY I'm facing this battle and WHY it affects me so badly emotionally and mentally, God gave me two precious truths that are key to keeping it all in proper perspective and therefore keeping my mind and emotions in check. These two things are Truth, and I believing them will allow me to face trials and accept them in faith. Here they are:
1. Everything God allows into my life is coming from His great love for me.
2. Trials that God allows me to go through are for the purpose of refining me to reach my full potential in Him.
These two things are HUGE, and it is so precious to me that God gave me truth in response to the exact things that I'm struggling over in my mental battles. Because when I'm struggling, my mind tends to say things like this: "I'm supposed to believe that God loves me. But God can't really love me or else I wouldn't be dealing with stuff. He would intervene if He really loved me. He would answer my prayers for relief. He would keep me from stumbling. He would protect me from attacks. He would keep me from believing lies..." etc, etc, etc until it makes me want to curl up and die.
But now when I start going down this road again, I can refer to the Truths above. God does in fact love me, which means that He wants what is best for me, not necessarily what is easiest. To help me understand it better, I thought about the way I love Elias. I love him so much that I want him to grow into a responsible and mature adult, so I discipline him now. That's not easy and not pleasant, and he would be a lot happier right now if I would just let him do whatever he wants. But that wouldn't be love and it would lead not only to misery later, but it would prevent him from being a useful and valuable member of society in the future too.
And that leads right into the second point, which is that God has a purpose and point to the suffering I go through. In this particular case, He has shown me a LOT of doubt and rebellion that lies in my heart, which I never would've known was there if my life had always been all hunky-dory. So he uses pain and suffering to reveal that so it can be dealt with and cleansed, thus enabling me to be happier in Him and also a better representative on earth of Christ and His character.
Sometimes, though, I don't always get to see the purpose behind what He's doing, and that's where faith comes in. It's hard in the middle of suffering to understand and believe that God is allowing this out of love. And so I just have to believe it. So that's where I am right now. Just choosing to believe God and praying that He'll bring me out of this valley into a place of rest soon.