As I wrote yesterday, I haven’t been able to find my joy since I ended the relationship with my best friend. We hadn’t been friends for too long, but I thought of our friendship as a ‘new beginning’ as she stepped in when I had no one or nothing, and has put up with my moods like a champ. So when our friendship ended, I had to admit the problems I had attributed to my family and everyone else were obviously MY fault. Plus, I wasn’t sure I had it in me to try to form friendships again, at least not ones of substance.
Rob is always the exception. His history with depression has bonded us beyond measure. Don’t get me wrong… I can and have been vile with him, yet he has learned my patterns and somehow, he always seems to forgive me. The man is a saint and I can only attribute it to his deep relationship with Christ along with his ‘been there’. He has a wonderful family who keeps him from sinking as deeply as I do, yet he still understands. But because of his family, I know I need to find some female friends, so that is when I reached out to a few on Facebook practically begging them to hang out with me. I had gotten to the point where I was starting to fear aloneness again. I remember hesitating to commit to helping at VBS when it was 3 weeks away ‘because I may not be here’. Almost daily, I tell Rob I will NOT survive another holiday season alone. I won’t. Rob tells me not to worry what about is months away, so I say “I don’t know if I can make it through my birthday 8/24”…
Where is my faith? Where is my dependence on God? What happened to only worrying about today, because tomorrow has enough worries of its own? What happened to all I need is God? What happened to all those times Jesus turned what the enemy intended as harm to bless me? Maybe I am crazy. Maybe I do need to be sent away to a hospital, smelling of urine, where I sat in a white rocking chair all day, staring absently out the window overlooking the lawn…
But I won’t give up Jireh and Addy, so I (having no gas in my car) asked Shannon (who I haven’t seen for months as she has 2 young children) to please hang out with me. Yes, I was that pitiful. Shannon suggested she we go to Starbucks and then go to Northland. UH-OH!!! PEOPLE DON’T LIKE ME AT NORTHLAND! I HAVE BURNED BRIDGES AT NORTHLAND! However, I will go just about anywhere if you take me to Starbucks, I wanted to spend time with Shannon, I wouldn’t have the gas to go to Willow Creek, and I was serious about changing – forgiveness, releasing bitterness, and being more Christ-like. So I agreed. I was soooo sick with anxiety and Crohns attacks, but I was determined to go. I truly felt like I was wearing a “USA” shirt across the Iranian border!
As soon as we walked in the foyer, I saw Pastor Joel! He exclaimed, “NO WAY!” when he saw me and we hugged like long-lost friends. It was perfect! I told him he always will be my pastor and, while I have a lot of enemies at Northland, they can’t keep me away from him. It was just what my heart needed to see one of my all time favorite people ever! Shannon had mentioned Pastor Joel had written an excerpt about me in one of his books and wanted to go to the bookstore to show me. Well, guess what the name of the book is? I Don’t Do Crazy Anymore. I kid you NOT!!! There is a blurb about me inside the covers of I Don’t Do Crazy Anymore. As I write this, the book is propped on my desk. I’m letting it sink in.
I’m not denying I have depression and anxiety. In fact, I had to pray for God’s power, strength, and cohesiveness to write this entry. I am fighting the desire to go back to bed. Tonight I am meeting “the ex-best friend” (prayers needed!) to see if we can reconcile any part of our friendship. Again, anxiety, depression, fear, and all the weapons from Satan are trying to discourage me from attempting to reconcile our relationship. Trust has been broken, we have hurt each other, etc. Yet part of Pastor Joel’s message was the verse about as far as it depends on you, be at peace with with everyone. And one of Pastor Joel’s trademark statements is “Just take the next right step”. It was right of me to go to Northland yesterday. It is right for me to try to reconcile broken relationships. And it is right of me to try to utilize God’s power and love to make new friends, love other people, not be so guarded, and take chances, like I did with Shannon. I had the best time with her yesterday! I enjoyed the puppy-playdate with Karen Saturday, and I even enjoyed sitting at the Springs with Susie last week.
God created us for relationship. I must not allow depression to take that away from me.