Today has been a good day personally. Yesterday was rough. I’m sensing a pattern: every other day I crash, so right now I’m at about half good days! Yay! Progress!
The subject of spiritual warfare has been on my mind for a while. I am a Christian. I believe that God exists, that He created me and loves me, that He sent His Son Jesus to die for my sins and make me holy. I also believe that Satan exists. I believe he hates me, I believe he wants to see me beaten down and destroyed. I believe that he is actively working against me, especially when my witness for Christ can be compromised.
I also have dysthymic depression. I’ve been discovering some interesting things about depression. I believe that it is a chemical deficiency in my brain. I’ve discovered that a cause of depression could be anemia, which apparently I’ve struggled with unknowingly for most of my life, just like my previously undiagnosed depression. Depression is primarily lies. Lies like “I’m not exciting enough” “I can’t do it” “I am no good,” and I believe that Satan is the father of lies. I definitely see his work every other day right now. But, I do not believe that Satan caused my depression. I believe that he exploits it, hits me when I’m down, to keep me down, to destroy my witness.
I’ve noticed a pattern before: every time I do something “big” for God, I’m hit with a pretty good dose of depression. Like every mission trip I’ve ever been on, including the one I led to Cambodia in college. I was so depressed on that trip that while the rest of the team were working and interacting with the lovely Cambodian people, I was laying in my room in the dark, unable to get out of bed – and I was the leader! Every Easter musical I ever did, especially the last one Trent and I co-wrote and co-directed, was attacked in different ways. During the last one, titled True Love, a cast member’s marriage collapsed (not Trent’s, another couple), one of our former cast members (he had moved away a year or two before, but was still close to the church) contracted a flesh-eating bacteria and died, and on that same Sunday that I found all of that out, Trent’s infant daughter fell headfirst off a bed onto a hardwood floor and they had to rush her to the emergency room right before our rehearsal was scheduled to start (she was fine, not even a concussion, praise God!). We didn’t have much of a rehearsal that Sunday, we had a prayer meeting. That musical ended up being one of the most powerful and impactful Easter musicals we had ever done. That mission trip to Cambodia had farther reaching effect than I had ever dreamed of, and I am so blessed that even though that was a super low point for me, God still used my efforts to glorify Himself.
So, I know that Satan whispers lies into my weak brain. I especially know this because he’s been working at filling my head with lies every day since Trent and I started talking. Satan really does not want Trent and I to be together. This morning my mentor shared this video with me:
What she said about depression being anger turned inward really hit me. So I started thinking of reasons why I am angry. I came up with five things. I’m not going to share all five, but one of them was because Trent dumped me. That made me angry. I think mostly because it really hurt and I don’t understand why. I know that my depression and his ADHD contributed majorly to our problems, but I don’t feel like they fully explain how three days prior to the break up he said:
Then we had a weekend of less-than-normal communication, a fight about a topic I actually agree with him about, and then he suddenly decided that we weren’t right for each other and ended it. I’ve tried to find closure, wrote him a long letter saying most of the things I wanted to say to him, but I still don’t completely understand. So I asked my mentor today:
My mentor is kind of our intermediary. We realized soon after the break up that talking to him directly sends my fragile emotions reeling, so she agreed to ask him those questions. She reported back that the conversation was going well, that she felt like progress was being made, answers were being found, but that there were some questions she wanted to ask him yet and she’d let me know how it went.
Then my mentor, my strong, reliable, unflappable mentor had a horrible, awful, no good, very bad day at work that left her in tears. Coincidence? Unlikely, in my opinion. Tonight, she rightly needs to take time for herself and recover after an awful day at work, not worry about her work with Trent and I. She said after Trent dumped me that her goal was not to reunite Trent and I. She stated that her goal in investing in my life was to make sure that Satan doesn’t win. That I am not so depressed and destroyed that I am rendered ineffective for the kingdom of God. She is a strong Christian, so she probably already had a target on her back, but I feel like investing in this situation has made her even more of a target.
Satan doesn’t want me to get married, and I feel like he especially doesn’t want me to marry Trent (just think – the musical we co-wrote when we were just friends and co-workers reached hundreds of people for Christ – think of what we could do working together full time for the kingdom of God!). I wrote in my last post how and why I believe God does want me to get married, and get married to Trent. It’s a battle. It has been every single day. That’s what this life as a Christian is, really. It’s not easy and so far I don’t feel like I’ve seen many victories or rewards. But, the war for my soul was won a long time ago, and so I know who will win in the end. I don’t say that thinking that if Trent and I miraculously get back together and get married that we will have won. It will still be a battle. We would need God to strengthen us and fight for us every day then, just like we need Him to every day now, if not more so.
Friends, I expect to be depressed tomorrow. My sister chided me during True Love for expecting attacks and hardships during the time I was working on that show: “if you expect difficulties of course they will come!” I agree there is something to be said for self-fulfilling prophecies. But I also know that Satan doesn’t like me, and I don’t think he likes me writing this blog. So far, every time in the past month I’ve written a post that wasn’t a book review, I’ve gone down. Right now I feel mentally weak and very unable to fight any big battles but I can do this. I can write what I’m going through in the hopes that at least one of my small following will be inspired to get closer to God. I’m still figuring out ways to fix my brain, I’m going to a doctor tomorrow to hopefully get some more answers, I’m not giving up. But I know that Satan is not going to make it easy.
Prayer is the best weapon against Satan’s attacks. I’d appreciate it especially tonight that you’d join me in prayer for my mentor. Thank you.