These three verses sum up the last couple of days for me. It is interesting that as human beings, we struggle and resist difficulty and suffering. We cry out against emotional discomfort and seek a quick fix. We run away from things that might challenge us too deeply for fear of change, rejection or of people laughing at us.
I am sometimes asked if I have a) Asked to be healed, b) If I have demon activity going on and a need to be freed/released or c) Why haven't you been healed (Inferring I am doing something horribly wrong or it's my fault!) The way my body is made when I am born is by a combination of DNA from 2 people. It's a physical manifestation of a body, in the physical world. Spiritually, at that point, I am dormant, and awaiting a reboot from the divine. In biblical terms this is a fallen world, where humans are spiritually disconnected from God, and through the correct use of the will, we can return to that relationship by seeking a covenant with Christ, accepting his sacrifice and our salvation. Then, by the Holy Spirit, I am reconnected through the spiritual switchboard to God, where He has been waiting eagerly for me to sign in for conversations, gifts of the spirit and the odd miracle. He didn't want to force me. He wanted me to come by choice. To some of you this is either ridiculous, on a parallel with Santa and faeries, or the best thing since sliced bread. Some waver between these states.
But what I am getting at is that actually, I don't need to know why I have bipolar. I don't need to find out if it was drugs that did it, genetics, my environment or all of the above. My brain chemicals are just disordered. What I become aware of more and more through this journey, is that my illness is an opportunity to get to know God more intimately. I can resist His intervention, believing that I know the answers or that if I try hard enough it might go away. Or I can try and perceive my situation from a spiritual perspective and see, in amongst the madness, where God is at work and laying out a discreet plan of action for me. I can let Him reveal to me where He is honing me, encouraging me, putting people in my path, granting me wisdom or divine guidance. It is also an opportunity for me to nurture and foster a genuine spiritual relationship. Not one where I go about judging everyone and being pious like some weird Christian legalistic biblical Olympian. But one where I listen, He speaks. I speak, He listens. We journey together. I am trying to live the parable. Bipolar happened and God's work is now being revealed in me. What that means is that I am not beholden to my illness. I am not a victim of it. I can use it as a tool. I can be a living testimony to God's love and powerful Holy spirit.
When I was in deep depression relapse in July 2015, my thought processes were very dark and suicide was on the cards. I remember being on my knees, head on the floor and completely submitting myself to God as I had felt totally overwhelmed by the power of my mind. In the acute darkness, God revealed to me the cross. I was placed on a plinth, laying quietly at it's base covered by a sheet, resting and at peace. The light illuminated Christ in splendour above me, and God gently told me that the sacrificial work had already been done. Dying was not what I needed to do and He would honour my life and continue to restore me through this period of terror and despair.
God has never abandoned me and I trust His will in my life implicitly. For me my faith is not a convenient idle crutch, or a way of elevating myself above you. It is a living, breathing, active relationship and in my illness I have been able to access something deep and meaningful beyond my wildest dreams.
I don't know whether healing or a cure is on the cards for me. I sometimes resent the illness and it's consequences, but wild flowers can grown amongst the most broken rocks. I will keep allowing the spirit to work in me, and if I am lucky, you will see the face of Christ in my life and recovery.