You go outside to clear your head, but when you come back inside, it still feels like you’re in a fog. You get in the car and drive away for a change of scenery, but it seems like you’re stuck in a cul-de-sac of endless emotions that keep spinning in your head. Exercise on the treadmill reminds you that you aren’t going anywhere. You’ve prayed fervently. You’ve sat in a church pew and listened intently. You’ve read specific scriptures. You even sought after advice, and read a couple of suggested books.
What can you do when your issues or your problems are greater than all of your exhausting attempts to address them? From Come Before Winter, Chuck Swindoll wrote:
“In pain, grief, affliction, and loss, it often helps to write our feelings…not just feel them. Putting words on paper seems to free our feelings from the lonely prison of our souls.”
To write is to release yourself from that which binds you. To write is to heal yourself from that which emotionally afflicts you. To write is to open a window that lets God come inside your life.
God sees you. God sees your life and your specific circumstances. He is El Roi, which in Hebrew means, “the God who sees me.” He sees what you write. Do you believe that?
We don’t know what the physical affliction was that Paul had, but he wrote about it. Did it help Him? Listen to his words:
“I will say this: because these experiences I had were so tremendous, God was afraid I might be puffed up by them; so I was given a physical condition which has been a thorn in my flesh, a messenger from Satan to hurt and bother me, and prick my pride. Three different times I begged God to make me well again. Each time He said, “No. But I am with you; that is all you need. My power shows up best in weak people.” Now I am glad to boast about how weak I am; I am glad to be a living demonstration of Christ’s power, instead of showing off my own power and abilities. Since I know it is all for Christ’s good, I am quite happy about “the thorn,” and about insults and hardships, persecutions and difficulties; for when I am weak, then I am strong-the less I have, the more I depend on Him.” (2 Corinthians 12:7-10, TLB)
Sometimes, it’s difficult to verbalize to others what you’re experiencing. Maybe you are just tired of life itself. For me, journaling provides a safe place to empty myself via words. It’s the “write” thing to do. How can you accept the spiritual help that God offers, if you refuse to first, admit where you are on your specific journey?
Swindoll provides the challenge: “As you feel the stinging thorns of pain today, what do you write? Nothing? Healing stands with folded arms waiting to read your words. Small wonder you’re still bleeding.”
pictures courtesy of “Nelson and his Nikon”