I have so much pain in my soul, I don't know where to begin, and so I pray- a raw, passionate plea.
I have been selfish in turning away from the gifts of vision, insight, and compassion that you grant me. Please forgive me, Lord, Father, Jesus, Spirit, Mind, Body, and Soul. I am yours again. Use me to reach people and heal people. I am placing my life in your hands and once again am trusting in your will. Please use me, guide me, help to become a guiding light for others on their journey towards finding your truth. I am so sorry, Lord, for pulling away and choosing to ignore you. Please, please forgive me. Please, please, please heal my heart, my soul, and help me to find the strength in you to witness to others again.
In the name of the Father, the Son, and the Holy Ghost
I truely believe that I am an ordinary person set to live an extraordinary life... but who am I anymore? I don't know that I can answer that, I don't know that I know. My friends who know me do not know all of me. They know the injured, the broken, the scarred and the never-quite-healed Melinda. This is why I have been yearning for the friendships I had while I was at PLU. I was a whole person then, a magnificent, growing, knowledge-thirsty woman of God with undying Faith, who withstood and overcame constant struggles, and a person full of Grace and God's Love. I held nothing back, I hid nothing from anyone, and I was happy. I sang, I worshiped, I prayed- many times a day... but what happened? Where did that person go? And who have I become?!
Too many people died, and I felt their family's pain. Too many times I knew how bad their souls were hurting, and every time I helped them, every time I used that "gift" of compassion and embraced the idea of empathically connecting to heal their pain, I lost a little of my own strength, the emotions of others, the intensity to which I surrendered my heart to heal theirs was so much... words cannot begin to describe... And when I would reach out to others who swore they were with me in Christ, that they could help me discern everything I was experiencing, it was too heavy for them. (I realized now that perhaps it's because this is my gift to bear- not a burden, not a cross, but a gift, and that I must learn to find that strength to renew my very own Spirit in God Himself, God Herself.) By me sharing, turning to my friends for help only pushed them away- or scared them and I pushed myself away. This left me to grieve- not only the loss of so many dear and cherished lives around me, but the loss of what had been professed as undying friendships. I found that I was no longer able to trust in God, I was afraid that He would leave me standing raw, bewildered, broken and alone as my friends in Christ had done.
That fear, once it sunk its teeth into my bleeding heart, was a parasite that drained and depressed me. It alienated me from my friends, my family, and all that I loved. I no longer sing in worship. I rarely truely pray. And, perhaps the saddest fact, I have not opened myself or my heart, I have not allowed myself to get even remotely close to having a vision or using the God-given gifts to help anyone. I have turned myself 3/4 away from God. I didn't shut the door or turn my back completely, but I have been damn-near close.
I am slowly turning back to that door, and have been gingerly pushing it open again. Much to my mind's surprise, and my heart's content, there is little resistance from God- DUH! I find myself- my SELF- hesitating, and am recognizing that it is my own fear that holds me back, the fear of actually letting go and falling- blindly, with trust- into God again.
Tonight, for the very first time that I can EVER remember, I made the choice to deny myself Holy Communion. It's something that is sacred, and as a Catholic, the belief in my Faith makes it so. No, I don't believe that I'm a canibal eating human flesh and drinking blood, but I do believe that my soul needs to be in a more natural and healthy relationship with Christ again before I can genuinely feel the miracle of the Host. Instead, I prayed- really prayed- for the first time in 5 years, and I wept. Silent tears, so as not to draw the attention of anyone in the congregation, poured down my face, soaking my shirt, and cleansing my being. They were not only my tears, but God's tears- for Jesus wept too... the shortest verse in the bible, "Jesus wept." He cried for the pain I put upon myself by isolating myself. He cried for joy that I was finally coming home, that I was finally trusting him again, realizing that he is my friend, my brother, my guide, the one and only.
Today, as everyone else sang and worshiped and shared Holy Communion, Jesus and I wept together, and the Holy Spirit took my hand, and together we are starting a journey back to the path I am meant to be on.