By Beth Biggers
“It’s no big deal.”
Name a problem and that is my title for it: No Big Deal.
Financial stress? No big deal.
Kids sick again? No big deal.
Can’t get out of bed without crying? No. Big. Deal.
Of course, this only applies to my own problems. I have all the compassion for other’s daily struggles. But when someone asks me how they can pray for me….I normally come up pretty blank. All I can think of is my friend’s miscarriage, the injustices on the news, my sick elderly neighbor. My daily struggles pale in comparison.
I have a very distinct memory of saying “I think I would probably implode if I ever got a real problem.” I said this in the midst of a separation from my husband. Abuses past and present were playing a part in where I found myself in life, my son and I were sleeping on the floor at my parent’s house. I had no money, no car, no job, and no hope.
And I didn’t have any “real” problems.
Do you do this too? Do you look at the things in your life that really burden you, that cause you genuine pain or suffering and push them to the side? Do you constantly feel like a whiner when your reply to a “How are you?” is “Not so great,”? Do you feel like you have to skip through the mourning and make it directly to the comfort in order to be blessed? Do you try to force yourself to act more okay than you are because you believe there are people who have it far worse than you?
I want to get low before you and confess that I do. I have. I have been pretty honest about my struggle with Depression, but I have a deep dark secret about that:
I haven’t faced Depression as a limiting, crippling, and debilitating aspect of my life. I haven’t brought it to the Lord as something I NEED His help with. I have wanted to distance myself so far from the camp of Christians who tell people with mental illness that they just need to pray more or believe harder or be more spiritual that I have instead grasped for any and every branch that offered help, hope or healing. Any branch that is, except for Jesus. Vocalizing my mourning and my heartbreak over the loss of the past two years of my life has not been a thing for me. I haven’t wanted to pray for my friend who lost a baby and in the same breath ask Jesus to help me because I am sad for no reason. It has just seemed…wrong.
This week, that same friend marked the one year anniversary of her loss. Guys, do you know that in the midst of her journey of grief, all I have heard from her is how beautiful Jesus is in her life. How strong He is. How trustworthy and good. I have known Jesus for over a decade, and my friend’s perspective on this thing baffled and perplexed me. I just couldn’t get my head into that space of what I consider to be “real” suffering juxtaposed with gut-wrenching praise to the God who is in charge of who lives and who dies. Because here I am, trying to make myself get out of the bed in the morning without crying at the prospect of feeling like crap for another 12-16 hours. Praise not on my lips. Because the promises of God only apply to people with “real” problems, right? Not the depressed mom drowning in overwhelm.
This week, the Lord took my hand and led me into mourning. He and I walked through the past two years and everything lost and I broke open and cried and bawled and sobbed and….grieved. He walked me through repentance for not trusting Him with my heart. He comforted me with the manna of His Spirit for me. Manna that cannot be hoarded. Manna that cannot be reproduced or manufactured or explained.
Manna that is specific.
Manna that is mine.
Manna that is the perfect answer to my specific hunger.
Manna that I have been craving for two years and would not have tasted if I had not come face to face with my limitations and my problems and called them by name and acknowledged them for what they are: Real problems.
Momma, whatever situation you’re in, whatever corner of your heart is hiding away its tender self for fear of being further bruised or rejected, I would encourage you this week to cast off our pride. Ask Jesus for words you can’t speak. Break open the flask of your mourning and trust Him to meet it with comfort, a peace that passes understanding, and a specific provision of His spirit, His manna, the Bread of Life, just for you and your problems and your season of life.
“Therefore humble yourselves under the mighty hand of God, that He may exalt you at the proper time, casting all your anxiety on Him, because He cares for you.” 1 Peter 5:7
“Beth Biggers has been following Jesus for 11 years, married to Brandon for 7, and a mom for 5. Her sons Luke and Liam provide her with adventure, laughs, and content for her blog athttp://www.bethbiggers.com where she writes about family, faith, and urban homesteading.”
She would like to connect with you!
One thought on “Comfort in Mourning – Fridays With Beth Biggers”
Beth, this is beautiful. It’s far too easy to brush aside our pain, looking at others who have ‘real’ problems with compassion while feeling contempt for ourselves. It’s hard to remember sometimes who we really are: beloved daughters of El Elyon, the Most High God. Everything thing else should pale next to that knowledge, yes? Our very real problems (yes, they are ALL real!) can find their proper place only when we grasp our identity in Jesus. I love to hear how He walked you through the process of grieving and repentance. And I am excited for you and hope to hear how He brings you forward from here. Grace and peace to you!
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