~~ Romans 8:28-39 (NIV84) ~~ And we know that in all things God works for the good of those who love him, who have been called according to his purpose.... If God is for us, who can be against us? ...Who shall separate us from the love of Christ? Shall trouble or hardship or persecution or famine or nakedness or danger or sword? ... No, in all these things we are more than conquerors through him who loved us. For I am convinced that neither death nor life, neither angels nor demons, neither the present nor the future, nor any powers, neither height nor depth, nor anything else in all creation, will be able to separate us from the love of God that is in Christ Jesus our Lord.
|Photo by Carley Cooper. All Rights Reserved.|
High to Low & Back Again
My year started out on a high point and quickly turned into a downward spiral. An upsetting incident triggered a bad Bipolar Disorder episode which lasted six months. I went into a series of breakdowns and had the worst mixed episode I’ve ever had. (A combination of depression and mania episodes that quickly change from one to the other are what BPD people call a ‘mixed episode.) The incident that triggered all this was when things went bad between me and my counsellor. I lost my spiritual therapist and one of my most important friends at the same time. I had more medication changes and adjustments than I’ve ever had in my life. Counseling and therapy was at a close second to that.
There’s Always an Up Side
On the positive side of things, I have learned I am stronger than I thought I was. I also came out the other end with some incredibly strong relationships. I know that God will not lead me through anything that I’m not strong enough to handle. This year; my writing improved, my patience was enhanced , the peace inside my heart has grown. I had a man say to me that he loves to see me around our apartment building because I ‘smile with my eyes.’ It made me feel good to hear that.
The highlight of my year happened this past week. As I write this I’m in the car traveling with my family. Eight of us had a vacation in Florida together. We spent four of our vacation days at Walt Disney World. It was my first time there. Wow! The Magic Kingdom really is... well.... magical! I got to have my photo taken with most of my favorite characters. Eh hmm... the big guy himself kissed me twice. Yep, Mickey Mouse kissed my hand and my cheek. How cool is that?! I also got to take a river boat ride, a train ride, an African safari (at the Animal Kingdom park), beat an African drum, experience a tiny taste of Italy (my dream vacation) and a few other countries (at Epcot), and watch the big Disney Christmas parade live (twice). It was a once in a lifetime experience and I highly recommend it to everyone who is a child at heart.
However, you know what I think the highlight of my vacation was? It wasn’t the music, colors, animals, people, or the magic of the kingdom. It was Christmas Day and it happened during one of the parades I watched going down Main Street, Disney. There were two people who wore t-shirts; and written on the back in large letters was “Happy Birthday Jesus”. It really brightened my whole vacation. Another day, I saw a sky writer write “Jesus” and “God” across a clear blue sky. It filled my heart with joy to see these things. It’s what I think about first when I remember the wonderful days that I just experienced with my family.
God Does Not Waste Anything
That counselor that I had lost the friendship with was eventually worked out. It’s not the same as before. I miss it, and he’s told me he does as well. However, we’ve both grown from our experience together. He’s told me many times that God does not waste anything. My problems have helped me grow in so many ways. What problems did you have in 2012? How did God use them to create a blessing for you? Share with me in the comment section below. I’d love to hear your stories.
~~ Dear God ~~ Your ways do not always make sense to our limited human minds, but I know that everything I go through will be used by You for my own good, if I keep Jesus in focus. Thank You Father for everything, including the difficult times, for I know that those times mean You care enough about me to want to mold me into someone like Jesus. In Jesus name, AMEN.
Now It’s Your Turn
Thoughts? Questions? Want to share your story? Ask for prayer? Please consider sharing in the comments section; even if the link you clicked to get here was on another site. (If you’re on the homepage, click on the post headline, and scroll down to find the comments section.)