We aren’t born into a world of bliss. We are born into a world which is hurting. God’s creation was made perfect, without any pain or sorrow. When He made humanity (man), He gave him the right to choose. The right to choose to love or hate, to hurt or heal, to obey or disobey. We can choose his way or our own way. While the world was perfect, it was untested. When man was tested, they made the wrong choice and failed. With man’s failure came sin and all of the pain that accompanies it.
While we aren’t born into bliss, we are born with the ability to survive. My mental illness was my inbuilt struggle to survive. In a lot of ways it was a gift, a beautiful way of protecting myself from the harm that surrounded me. Eventually, however, my protection system developed into a problem and was more harm than good. It became necessary for me to start facing the pain and find a new way of protecting myself against the storms and disappointments of this world. For me this time came when I hit rock bottom. That is, when I came to the end of myself and no longer had the will to keep going. It was in this empty, lonely place that I found where God was when I was little. With me!
Yes, He had been with me all along, He never left me. On my journey to healing, God took me back to many painful events in my past. In the process of facing these hurtful events I found God. I discovered times when He surrounded me with His beautiful light so that I could play in His presence, in the midst of the storm. I saw moments when He cried, because I was crying. When I was hurt, He felt my pain. Even at night when the enemy tortured me with horrific dreams no child should have to endure, I discovered that God had placed an angel there. He was there all along, I just didn’t see Him. I didn’t know how to look for Him, nor did I have anyone there to teach me. He couldn’t stop the wrong choices of man, nor the harm of the enemy, but He could be with me.
God doesn’t promise that we won’t have pain. Even when we are in a supportive environment bad things can still happen. Pain can result from our own wrong choices, natural or man-made disasters, harm caused by a person or Satan, or maybe a combination of the above. No matter what difficult situation arises, God promises to be with us in our pain. People and community can provide love and support as we go through the trial, however, they can’t fix the hurt. My counselor provided a loving supportive environment where I could heal, but my healing occurred in the intimate moments that I had with Jesus. He was the one who healed and restored me. He was my answer, my counselor was an avenue of God’s love.
If people ask me today if I had my life again would I choose to not experience mental illness, or any of the pain I endured during my childhood. My answer is always the same. What I went through brought me closer to God. I discovered a wealth in God that I can’t find anywhere else on this earth. Today I have hope and I know of a love that is never-ending. It was in the pain that I discovered who God truly was. I learnt how to look for Jesus and found the power of His name in defeating the enemy. My journey taught me that I am never alone, no matter how bad the situation. Honestly, I wouldn’t trade the relationship I have today with God for anything. God turned the harm in my life into blessing. If given the choice, I would change nothing.