As it’s Mental Health Month here is Australia I got to thinking about my own journey with Bipolar Disorder, Anxiety and Panic Disorder.
The past few weeks have been quite flat out with family, church, obligations and well, just life! I’ve not stopped a great deal but I have made the effort to have an intentionally quiet start each day. And this has Brough about some new perspective on my journey, in particular, how I view the way in which God heals.
I’ve always believed in healing and have experienced many wonderful moments in my life where I have had genuine physical healing take place, sometimes even immediately after prayer. So I know that it can happen.
So I think I’ve found it hard to understand why I don’t seem to be receiving that same healing with my mental health as I’ve experienced with physical illness. And this has challenged my faith. At times I’ve wondered why I have not been miraculously and immediately healed from Bipolar Disorder. Can you imagine how cool that would be? To be able to share such a story?
But no. This has not happened and it’s taken me nearly two decades to work it out.
God doesn’t always share his plans with us and doesn’t always give us a guarantee on how he’s going to operate in and through us. Basically, he doesn’t have to explain his decisions to us, and so then he doesn’t.
So fast track to the last couple of weeks where I have been thinking and rethinking my understanding of healing and how God chooses to heal. And this is what I’ve learned, so far:
- God is absolute. He does not need to share his agenda with me and does so because he loves me, not because I have a right to know.
- Healing happens in a multitude of ways, most of them unfathomable and inconceivable. How and why he chooses to heal each person as he does is beyond us, and something we only get access to understanding at his discretion.
- God’s love is unconditional and not dependent on how healed we may or may not be.
As a Chrisitan living with mental illness, I have fought the battle of stigma and shame, worked through the faulty mindsets that God keeps us on a shelf until we are usable and discovered that when I rest in him, I become fulfilled. He is my communion and without that I am not whole.
Finally, I wrote a little accronmyn on what it means to me to rest in God. I might do a more comprehensive blog on this soon.
REST in God
R – recalibrate – turn toward the Maker and recalibrate your direction, intentionally lining yourself up with his Word so that he can speak into your journey and reveal your identity in him.
E – establish – Establish your thoughts and actions in the word and in how God instructs you to live so that you may be grounded in his life and established in his direction for your journey.
S – be silent -Sit still in his presence and be intentionally silent. Wait. Listen. Be at rest in your mind and wait on him to speak and strengthen you. The sacrifice of being still enables you to hear his voice and see his plans for you more clearly.
T – trust – Decide to trust the Makers plans and love for you. Belief is a choice not an emotion and trust is built on a choice not a feeling. Faith is increased as we make the decision to trust that the Maker has truly validated us through Christ’s spilled blood, that he truly and unconditionally loves us and that his plans are pure toward us.
May you be blessed today as you journey with God and each other.