Warning: If you have no interest in reading my most personal, deepest, darkest secrets, please don't read any further. You've been warned.
When did it become impolite and improper to talk about one's feelings? When did it become right to bottle up one's emotions, sitting, suffering silently and alone? And how was selfishness, the cause of so many of humanity's problems, declared a virtue?
I've been suffering for a while now. I can't keep it bottled up inside because I have friends that care about me and it would be selfish to withdraw from them, to be aloof, and not share my heart with the people who have promised to love me no matter what. So as I've been suffering, I've been laying my burdens down, both on God and on friends. Not to confess my sins to my friends but to ask for their guidance and their prayer.
Sometimes I get depressed. Seasonally yes, but always as a matter of circumstance as well. First I'm in the mind-set, then I'm set off, into my downward spiral of despair. And through this time of darkness I've been drawn closer to God than ever before, albeit painfully. I'm grateful that I have hope in an eternity with God, but I'm aware that I'd not probably be in despair if I didn't have hope, at least not in this moment, because if I didn't have God, if I didn't have moral guidelines, I wouldn't have compassion and I wouldn't be empathetic to the pain and suffering of the world. But I do, I have a conscience, I have compassion and I have been suffering. I feel like I've lost all the innocence I once had and it has been one of the darkest and most painful experiences of my life.
I almost feel guilty. My life has been so easy, my burden has been light. I was raised in a good family, with parents who love me. Surrounded by affluence and privilege, health and prosperity. And I'm grateful for it all, I feel blessed but I also feel ashamed. Because of my comfort I failed to see the world as it truly is, in it's broken state. But that's all changed, the curtains have been pulled down and there is no hiding from the truth of this fallen world. Things are darker and more polluted than I ever imagined. And I'm sorry that I've been so blind. I'm sorry that I've not been taking action to fight the corruption and selfishness that pervade so much of human thought and action.
My apology isn't worth anything if it's not followed by a change in the way I live my life, so I'm changing my life, both to prove to the world that I'm different and also to prove to myself that I'm not the same as everything I stand against.
This has been a really difficult time for me and it's not over yet, perhaps it never will be over, perhaps this is only the beginning. But it's the end of my carelessness. I'm ready to start a new chapter in my life as a follower of Christ and I'm ready to learn how to love and forgive. And I'm ready to stop talking about it and start taking action. If you pray, please continue to pray for me. It's been a really rough lately.
**If you've been suffering, if you've got a secret that's eating away at you, please, don't bottle it up, please don't keep it to yourself. Seek guidance both from God and from wise people around you. If a doctor tells you that you are terminally ill, you are going to get a second opinion. Get a second opinion, get a third opinion, get a fourth opinion, and then pray like mad. In each of us, there is a Darwinian, selfish desire telling us to be a hedonist, to only care about oneself. Fight it with everything that is in you, and please, ask God continually for guidance.