Till light arise

April 16th, 2015

 

 

I wait for God, the Lord, and on his Word

My hope relies;

My soul still waits and looks unto the Lord

Till light arise.

I look for him to drive away my night,

Yea, more than watchmen look for morning light.
~The Psalter, 1912

 

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From there, it was a slow slide down into the night.

That glimpse of God’s enormous and eternal goodness and sovereignty contrasted with my mere speckness was comforting for a brief time.

Then fear, who crouches on the other side of my back door, knocked again.  I opened the door just a crack, and quick as a wink, depression wedged his foot in and started fast-talking me, louder and louder, until he was shouting abuses and accusations in my face.

What difference does it make to God and His grand eternal plan whether the little speck of dust that is you belongs to Him or not when all is said and done?  From all I can see, you don’t come close to qualifying.  Ooh, ooh, ooh, you’re doubting!  Just proving my point!  You’re on the outside looking in and there’s nothing you can do about it if God decides He never knew you!

 

And then my friend said goodbye.

Just so, so terribly wrong and sad, and once the tears start, it all pours out all over again, all the tears for all the heartbreak…excruciating…

 

It didn’t take that much to make me lose my emotional bearings.  But this time I didn’t pull away into a corner and fight alone.  God gifted me with a husband and a few chosen sisters who don’t write me off when I’m real with them.

 

I know what is true about Him and His character from His word, but I battle and battle and battle to believe that I’m really His child and it applies to me. 

Maybe I’ve been fooling myself all these years, thinking I’m His child when I’m just enjoying the life He’s given me and feeling good, able to say all the true things because of the years of familiarity with His word and thinking I know Him.

The whole thing is getting harder, not easier, as time goes on, because I’m more and more tired of the fight and feel like others will get tired of me being a needy taker and why don’t I just buck up and get on with life now.

 

Those who counsel me in love all agreed.

That’s the depression talking.  It says the same thing to every child of God.  It’s lying to you.  Don’t listen to it.  

 

 

“Go to God and say, O ‘do as thou hast said.’

If you can see any word of promise suited to your case and to your need, then put to your hand by faith, and lay hold upon his word.

Take him at his word, and put him to it, saying, Lord, ‘do as thou hast said.’”
~Ralph Erskine, “Faith’s Plea Upon God’s Word”

 

 

On Good Friday, I cried aloud to Him.

need to know what’s real!  Jesus!  Do what You’ve said You would do!  Show me what’s real!

 

On Saturday, the day before Easter, He replied,

Most assuredly, I say to you, unless a grain of wheat falls into the ground and dies, it remains alone; but if it dies, it produces much grain.

He who loves his life will lose it, and he who hates his life in this world will keep it for eternal life.

 

I’ve been terrified I’m losing my life on so many levels, but Jesus said I must give it up in order to bear fruit, and hate it in this world to keep it for eternal life.

The reason it feels like I’m dying is that I am dying. This is what dying feels like.  

 

And then, on Easter Sunday morning, He pierced me even to the division of my soul and spirit and reassured me with His life-giving balm,

All that the Father gives Me will come to Me, and the one who comes to Me I will by no means cast out.

 

 

My daughter, you do not come into judgment.  You have passed from death to life, and you will by no means be cast out.

 

 

I will be glad and rejoice in Your mercy,
For You have considered my trouble;

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You have known my soul in adversities,
And have not shut me up into the hand of the enemy;

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You have set my feet in a wide place. 

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Blessed be the LORD,
For He has shown me His marvelous kindness in a strong city! 

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For I said in my haste, “I am cut off from before Your eyes”; 

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Nevertheless, You heard the voice of my supplications
When I cried out to You.

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The LORD is near to those who have a broken heart,
And saves such as have a contrite spirit.

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Many are the afflictions of the righteous,
But the LORD delivers him out of them all. 

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A big thank you to John Michael, age nine, for kindly taking these photos on Easter Sunday.  I love you, my son.

If any of you have also battled the darkness, you may know just what I’m talking about when I say that I love David the Psalmist as a brother in arms. My counselor sent me home from my last counseling session with the assignment to write up a very specific list of strict do’s and don’ts for myself for both acting and thinking. God was faithful when He gave me strengths, and He is faithful now, when He is stripping those strengths away from me and making me experience how utterly frail and needy and dependent I am on Him. My trust in Him has always been one of the strengths of my life, and He has seen fit to show me my inability to do even that. To make me know through experience what I knew in my head–my faith in Him comes wholly from Him.

Next planned post–an update on Verity that’s as small and sweet as she is.

 

 

 

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7 Responses to “Till light arise”

  1. Abbie Caple says:

    I haven’t ever struggled with depression, but I have really battled doubt and I know how black and deep and hard it is….

  2. Linda Herr says:

    Beautiful pictures, Susanna. You’re a beautiful mother. I love you, friend.

  3. Angie says:

    Yes, I have been there and heard those whispers of doubt. When doubts and fears assail you can be sure that Satan is near. Thank God for His faithfulness! Thank God He never lets us go even as we wander through the darkness, forgetting all that He has shown us and given us before. Psalm 40 has been perfect for where I am at right now. I read it at least once a day. “He lifted me out of the slimy pit, out of the mud and mire: He set my feet on rock and gave me a firm place to stand. He put a new song in my mouth, a hymn of praise to our God.””For troubles without number surround me: my sins have overtaken me, I cannot see. They are more than the hairs on my head, and my heart fails within me. Be pleased oh Lord, to save me…. But may all who seek you rejoice and be glad in you: may those who love your salvation always say, “The Lord be exalted!” Yet I am poor and needy: may the Lord think of me. You are my help and deliverer: Oh God, do not delay.”

  4. Susanna says:

    Thank you, Angie, and also Abbie, for your empathetic words.

    Linda, I thank God for your friendship. I love you, too, so much.

  5. Susan says:

    Dear Susanna, like you, I’m convinced that we can only learn how to trust Him when we are forced into a position of utter helplessness. Our strengths, talents and gifts must be useless, even to the point where we begin to doubt that we ever really had them. Sometimes it helps when I meditate on Peter’s relationship with Jesus, whom he truly loved. Peter really knew Him and loved Him as a brother, someone he could trust in every way. And yet he denied Him vehemently when the pressure came. In the depth of his grief he had to have felt that he had committed the most vile act of betrayal that anyone had ever committed. And yet his grave error did not change the steadfast love of the unchangeable One at all. I love how the words of Mark add a little glimpse of Jesus’ very individualized response to Peter’s weakness. When the women came to the tomb and were told that Jesus had risen they were told to “go and tell the disciples, and especially Peter, that He is alive!” And especially Peter! What an astounding revelation of His unchanging love for this grieving disciple. I can also hear Him saying, “Go and tell everyone, and especially Susanna, that my love cannot be altered by human action.” We may feel utterly cast out, but His encouraging words in His Word prove to us that we are not. Thank you for pushing through in this difficult walk. You are an encouragement to me on a daily basis.

  6. Sarah G says:

    “I know what is true about Him and His character from His word, but I battle and battle and battle to believe that I’m really His child and it applies to me.

    Maybe I’ve been fooling myself all these years, thinking I’m His child when I’m just enjoying the life He’s given me and feeling good, able to say all the true things because of the years of familiarity with His word and thinking I know Him.

    The whole thing is getting harder, not easier, as time goes on, because I’m more and more tired of the fight and feel like others will get tired of me being a needy taker and why don’t I just buck up and get on with life now.”

    Thank you for sharing this. I’ve felt all these things many times over the past several years as I’ve dealt with health issues and infertility. Thank you even more for the scriptures you shared after it. Like streams of living water.

  7. Susanna says:

    Susan, this moved me to tears and was exactly the right thing to write to me. I am copying your words and keeping them in my truth journal. THANK YOU.

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