I know that it bothers people when I say that I am in anguish. Some have expressed concern for my emotional well-being and recommended one anti-depressant or another.
I appreciate their concern, but that stuff is for people who are depressed for no reason. I have plenty of reasons and they are real.
For one thing, it’s a hard thing to see a little more of Jan’s personality slough off every day. In fact, I’m not ashamed to tell you that I hate it. Part of my torment is for her – the majority of it, I think. I don’t want her to suffer. I detest it when i have to watch her struggle to find the names of common nouns.
But there’s a part of it that is about me. I simply don’t want to go through what we (I) will have to endure in the near future.
I’m sorry if that bothers you.
Then, because I have accepted my role (even though I don’t do it very well) as an ambassador for Christ, it breaks my heart to see people that I love as I love my own children embracing demonic lies that will destroy them.
If you’re telling me that I should be able to see a family shatter and witness young children go through the heartbreak of their parents not loving them enough to keep the family intact and shrug it off as if nothing happened, I’m sorry. If you think I should sleep soundly at night after finding out that a daughter of God has been selling her body for money to purchase crack cocaine, I want to apologize. I’m not that cold hearted.
It’s as if someone has thrust a dagger in my heart sometimes. Not all the time, but sometimes.
I hate “their” sin, and i hate my own. I hate what the forces of evil are doing, the carnage they are pouring out on the lives of people i know. I hate what they’ve done to me.
I have a view of life that is naïve. I know that. I don’t think anyone should be subjected to life-threatening illness. I don’t think anyone should be enslaved by drugs, alcohol, or sexual abuse.
These things are normal, but they arent’ natural. We weren’t created to live this way. That’s why so much pain is associated with them.
Still, it happens.
Why does God allow me to carry these burdens? I don’t know. Apparently, I’m not that skilled at convincing people to turn away from it.
But one thing I do know is that I am not a hopeless man. I’m not in despair. I’m hopeful about the future. I am patient – I believe that some of those people who have chosen lies will one day recognize it and come to faith. I don’t think my wife will be healed, but I’m open to it. I do know, however, that she long ago put her faith in the one who died and was raised for her. I look forward to the day when our bodies will be resurrected and changed into perfect physical specimens.
Please don’t feel sorry for me. I don’t want to feel good about all of this filth and death. But I do want to feel good about Jesus. I usually do…almost always. But I often need to be redirected…turned around.
If you want to do something for me, do this: join me in “hating even the clothing stained by corrupted flesh.” In fact, encourage me to reject all forms of attachment to the things that will not last. Allow the gravity of the rebellion against God (the one we both participated in) to drive you closer to the one who is not stained. Then point me in his direction. Grab me by the shoulders and forcibly redirect me. Remind me that I am (as Luther said) a bag of maggots, but that our Savior is worthy of our suffering.
Remind me that my Father is using my pain to pull me into his bosom. Remind me that he is using my pain to draw other people into his family.
Remind me that it’s not about me…not at all.
Thank you in advance.
My loving Father, I am a wretched man. I have rejected your authority and your wisdom because I really want to be you and because I have not trusted you to have my best interests at heart. I desire the accolades of other flawed men while not seeking your approval. I beg you to overlook my sin by the covering of the blood of Jesus. And the burdens that I bear? Help me to see that they are nothing when compared to the burden you bore on my behalf. Use my anguish to draw me closer to you. Remind me that others have suffered far worse. Just draw me closer. Do whatever it takes. Pierce my heart, O God.