Gotta have Faith
This is probably the hardest thing I’ve ever had to write, because for me this has been such a long and private journey. But, if by sharing my story it helps even one person all the pain would’ve been 100% worth it. I’m 22 now and for about 7 years I’ve been depressed, progressively getting worse over the years. Probably the last thing most people expected me to say because 85% of the time I’m usually smiling and laughing (the other 15% percent of the time people say I have a bitch face apparently lol). But that’s why it’s such a scary thing it’s not like a physical illness where it’s obvious you’re not okay this is hidden, a silent killer, literally. For years I had a routine, cry, go to sleep, wake up, jump in the shower, cry, put my makeup on go to work (or wherever I was going) and tell everyone I have allergies. I became so good at hiding it, it just became second nature.
Over the last few years I’ve attempted suicide twice, the first time was a dud and failed. The second incident (recently) landed me in hospital, but I never told a soul. The second time around was the turning point for me, I remember coming home from the hospital the next day and just curling up into a ball on the floor. I felt like I couldn’t breathe, as though my heart was about to explode, a physical manifestation of my emotional pain. I’ve had surgery twice in the past and I’d take the pain of that ten times over rather than ever feel like I felt that day. I feel like God had to let me reach rock bottom and completely shatter so he put me back together in a way only he could, filling all the holes and cracks.
I’ve always been ‘religious’ perhaps a bit confused (my dad’s Muslim and my mum Christian). But, this time I really wanted to really know God if I was going to put all my trust in him. My problem was I thought I had faith but looking back I really didn’t and prayer without faith is useless. I used to pray meanwhile, making my own contingency plans in the background in case God didn’t pull through. Matthew 13:58 talks about Jesus being unable to do miracles in his hometown of Nazareth because of their lack of faith. When your heart is so full of doubt and fear there’s no room for God to do miracles in your life because you don’t believe he will.
Compare this to the faith of the Centurion who amazed Jesus with the strength of his faith (Matthew 8:5-13). You need to have faith like the Centurion, but to have that kind of faith you need to trust God 100%, but to trust God you need to KNOW him. How can you trust what you don’t know? My problem was I was claiming to love a God I didn’t really know. That’s why Bible STUDY is so important. I say STUDY because I used to read my Bible like I was reading a good story book not really praying on it or applying the teachings to my life, just thought it was a really good book to flick through. But now the Bible to me is like my guide to life.
Depression is a scary thing because it isolates you from everyone, takes you to a dark place where you can’t seem to get out. That’s why my favourite thing to call God is way maker. But God did not give us a spirit of fear, he gave us a spirit which overcomes because the Holy Spirit dwells inside us. We were promised peace that transcends all understanding, the kind of peace where the world around you might be falling apart, but you can’t seem to let it trouble your heart.
It’s really important to make a conscious choice to be happy and use your mouth to declare that decision. Now every day when I wake up the first thing I SAY (out loud, the tongue is so so powerful) is ‘Today is the day the lord has made I will rejoice and be glad in it. Today I choose to be happy and today I’m expectant that good things are going to happen’. Then I proceed to thank God for everything from the hair on my head, to bed I’m lying in, thanking him for the things he hasn’t done but that I know he will. I even pray for the annoying people I don’t like but I choose to Love anyway. Every day since then I promise you, I’ve been so happy, my brother even told me to stop looking so happy all the time.
Take care of your body– The Bible doesn’t say your body is a temple of the Lord for bants. Your mind, body and soul are inextricably linked. A healthy body is the first step to a healthy mind.
Take care of your mind– Take out time for you, I started journaling and it helps me process all my feelings and keep track of my progress.
Take care of your soul– Feed your soul, meditate on the Bible, pray often. Forgive the person who wronged you, forgive your parents, forgive yourself. The Holy spirits your helper in everything!
The most important thing I always tell myself is that I don’t know what tomorrow holds, but I know who holds my tomorrow.