Even in my pain and anguish you unravel the tears, the resentment, the guilt, the shame, the mistakes. You allow me to lay it all down and you are glorified through it all Jesus!
Anyone who comes to an understanding that their pain has been bought on the cross at Calvary before they even went through it is at an advantage with the Lord! The Lord gives me a new song to sing every day and this is what I have to sing and praise him about for the moment.
Yesterday was kind of dreary and somber for the most part, and it sort of spilled over into today. My mother woke me up at 2 or 3am to watch reflection scriptures with her on TV. I watched them separately in my own room. As soon as I turned on the tv, I struggled to pay attention, to what was on the screen. I was occupied with my phone. Then before I knew it, another show came on, so I turned the TV off.
You see, my mother, has trouble sleeping some nights. So I’ll sometimes give her a light massage along with playing some soothing sounds to get her to fall asleep. As I’m massaging her legs, I peered over at photos of our family lying on her bed. They were from when my sister Angela and I were little kids. I began to tear up from the nostalgia those photos brought.
As I continued the massage I realized ever since I can remember, my mother’s battle with mental health seemed to have caused me to store up a pain of my own. It was always an innate response for me to put on her burdens. We had an interesting relationship because she still had a heart to serve me as a mother, whilst I felt I needed to parent her at times. I would never really speak about this too much to her. Up until recently, I remained silent about it all. Actually, for most of my life I was unaware of how it affected me.
I Try Not to Complain
I am certain it’s been harder for my mother going through life with mental illness. Yet she has sacrificed a lot for my sister and I (and many others), despite her battle. Although it may be very taxing on me, I cannot begin to fathom what goes on in her mind and in her spirit. In the low times, she’s in a never ending episode of worry, denial, restlessness, intense emotion, and thought.
But somehow the Lord continues to carry her through it all.
Sometimes I’m still like “God why ME?”, “why MY mother?”
I have asked that question countless times since I was a child. Why can’t my mother be what I need her to be sometimes? Still never a full thorough answer revealed. More like answers to that question revealed in fragments of experiences I have had with her.
To be honest…
The honest truth is in my hardness of heart, I resent her.
Most times I even feel like abandoning her.
Sometimes I do actually abandon her.
In actuality, at times I even wish I could run away from the love I have for her, and people in general.
The Lesson is Love.
But in our attempt at authentic love, we will reach a point where we want to run away. We get fed up in our flesh we get selfish and run. I Thank God he’s hasn’t gotten fed up with my mother yet. Thank God he hasn’t abandoned her. Thank God he hasn’t thrown her into a group home! Or placed her into a mental hospital permanently.
With authentic love we have a desire to care for our loved ones even though they seem to be the person weighing us down with their baggage. I must not forget my mother deals with me in all types of ways. I forgive her, and she forgives me. And we move forward. Love covers a multitude of sins. (1 Peter 4:8)
God is Super Cool…
Because before my ma was saved she would just observe my new life in Christ, and cheer me on. But I knew she soon wanted in on it, and the holy spirit worked on her by using me! How cool is God though? Like seriously. Using little old me to win my mothers heart over!
I used to pray when I was younger my mom would get up and go to church, and now, look where she is at! Just turned 60 years ‘young’! Got baptized this summer! Became a member at her church! I can’t help but to cry as I think of the growth she has made in Christ.
Though her issues are usually very apparent to most, she gives God all the glory, honor and praise through it! She has such a joyful spirit and I definitely believe I inherited that from her. She is a living lesson and testimony to my eyes every single day.
I love you mom. And I dedicate this to you.
I also dedicate this to anyone who has been or is affected by mental illness.
“For my yoke is easy, and my burden is light.” Matthew 11:30 ESV
Set Apart, Not Aside.