this is a recent journal entry; i do hope it blesses and encourages those children of Christ who are weary. i'm not eloquent, i'm sure i've left out a lot, and the formatting is awful, but all i know is, He is risen. i am quite afraid and embarrassed to share this with you all, but i really believe He would have me share of the good He has done in this bruised-up heart to make me whole, as at the first. o bless His name, all of you, for He truly is a worker of miracles.
I know not what day it was, although I think it was a Monday or Tuesday. Sometime in early February. The details of when are shaded, but the details of how and why I feel are most clear.
For a long time, I had been lamenting at the state of things: the state of the world, with all its sinful practices, and I stuck here in it, tormented night and day by it, the state of my own heart when taunted by the flesh, and my deep longing to have the desire for an earthly husband fulfilled. Through all this I longed for peace and victory and found what i perceived to be none, and eventually i began to weep bitterly on a consistent basis. I felt as though Gods presence was not with me; I felt as though I had no hope. This went on for well over a year, as I had been broken by a young man who did not love me and shattered me greatly, which stole my joy. all i saw in that was my own sin of giving my heart to a young man who i had not been covenanted with and so was crushed continually with the guilt and pain of being emotionally involved with one not my husband. There were moments of joy as i fought for peace, and days and even weeks of happy tidings from the brethren, and meeting a truly godly man was inspiring to me, but also that served to torment me in my sin, in that I desired him then and knew it was not God's will for me to marry right now, and i was torn apart seeing how evil I was, wanting more than God graciously granted me, and how deeply tormented by the flesh in so many ways I continued to be. i began to think i had some kind of mental disease, being so unpeaceful...where were the fruits of the Spirit? where was the beautiful joy and peace i had when i was first saved? why couldn't i get it back? how could i let events in life shred me like this? why couldn't i just let Him heal me? i kept trying to cling to Him, praying all the time, begging for His presence, reading the Word, trying to stay faithful, and i could not bear it anymore, hating myself so much for all the frenetic thoughts in my heart and head. i wanted to die.
Then that night happened.
I was in my room, feeling extreme frustration of so many temptations and pains of trying to walk out death to the flesh sieging me all at once, complaining loudly in my anguish...afterwards, I was heavily convicted of my sin of complaining and grumbling and got down on the floor to pray. and as I lay there, I felt as though God took His presence from me.
It was the most horrifying, agonizing feeling I have ever experienced. In all the pain, all the torture of the flesh, all the temptation, and all the grief those cause, nothing was as horrible as this felt!!! Nothing! There are not adequate words to describe the utter grief and anguish my soul experienced that night. He was gone, that was it
I thought I had pushed God so far in my rebellion that it was final and I was done for!!! I recalled the man in the cage in the pilgrims progress book and thought that this must be my fate as well
I lay there actually writhing on the floor, unable to speak or pray or barely even formulate a thought; everything was confused and lost in me. It was 15 minutes of what I believe hell must be like. And I thought this was to be my future. I thought that this must be what hell is, for God to just be gone. There was unimaginable pain in my soul. Unimaginable. The agony of this was far, far worse than all the agony that I had cried over in recent times, and most chilling was, i knew it was merely a tiny glimpse of it. How could I have complained? How could I have rejected such a God who obviously was with me? How could I have assumed He was not? But now I could feel what it was (at least a little taste) to not have Him, and I thought I was done for!! I even heard a voice say to me, get used to this feeling, as if to imply I would go to hell and be without Him for all time!!! All I could do was plead no with my weak heart
I lay there writhing in utter despair, literally, for about 15 minutes or so.
but then...then He let me feel Him again.....and it was as if I had had no air and was suddenly let to breathe! I breathed Him in, His glorious Love, and rejoiced and cried tears of joy and peace, truly, and i was revitalized by God!!! Ah, what a love!!! What a kind, kind God! There He was!!!!
And here He is.
LORD, let me serve You. Let me remember always that night, and let me never again complain of the weariness that sin around me and temptation within me puts on me. Oh, but let me rejoice in Your presence and learn to obey You like all the faithful ones before!!! Thank You, o God, for showing me how it would feel to be without You! I could not bear it for those short few minutes, let alone all eternity!!! How scary!!! How painful!!! please make me understand what it is to be Yours!!! Thank You for showing me how little I have to complain about, and how much You have given me!!!
What a lovely gift it was that He gave me that night, and it remains so lovely to me. I have had much more peace since, and been blessed with obedience anew to Him. i see that He has brought me through a slough of despond this past year, and that it needed to be terrible so i could learn to cling to Him more fully. what a wonderful gift. I must learn and grow far more, for i am just a toddler in Him, but His love strengthens me to rise up with wings as an eagle and not be faint. He makes me steadfast and dependent on Him. O, please, gracious One, help me yet more, always, until I can come home to Thee and worship You in fullness without any distractions of the flesh or the evil one! Keep me in Your hand, o great Shepherd!!! My wonderful Husband, let me love and adore You!!!
I believe God gave me that night to show me that He is with me. And how really ridiculous it is for me to complain about trials (as though something strange were happening
) when the grief and agony of being without Him is so, so much more.
Thank You, o Lord, thank You. Thank You.