When looking forward to college, there are three things I definitely did not expect to happen. Yet on a rainy Monday morning as I sat in a chair across from a professional counselor, the words were spoken softly in tone but loudly to my vulnerable heart: OCD, anxiety disorder, and minor depression.
It turns out these three things have walked with me for a while and I just didn’t know. Scary, huh? As you can imagine, the days after were full of questions, fears, and shock. Well, shock and a lot of “ohhhhh, that’s why” moments.
It’s nice to have a name- or, names- for what I’ve been struggling with. But at the same time, it’s completely overwhelming. All of the symptoms and the diagnoses and the treatments in all their long lists and various severities just feel like a sentence.
It feels hopeless, all-consuming, permanent.
In steps truth.
God is my healer, my protector, and my safety. My identity is not found in the three names that currently walk with me, but in the name of my holy and perfect Jesus. I am sick, yeah. But I am first and foremost a daughter of God and nothing can take that away from me.
“Praise the Lord, o my soul, and forget not all His benefits- who forgives all your sins and heals all your diseases, who redeems your life from the pit and crowns you with love and compassion.” Psalm 103:2-4, emphasis mine
He brings light into all darkness, goodness into all bad news, and this is no exception.
These things are hard, yeah. They come with things that I can’t control and things that make me mad. But God is still using it. He’s using these things to grow my faith in Him and to help others who struggle with the same issues.
He’s also teaching me how to be thankful for the way I am and how He designed me, despite the ‘disorder’ my flesh has created. He’s teaching me to redirect my tendency to obsess to being obsessed with being more in love with Him. He’s showing me how to use my love of lists and need for structure to help in building His church.
I find my hope not in the possible treatments and medicines and doctors, but in the One who created me and has a plan for my life.
In the name of Jesus, OCD, depression, and anxiety have no power over me. I do not belong them, nor am I a slave to them. I am free in Jesus.
That is good news. For me and for you.
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I don’t know what’s going on with you right now. Maybe it’s something similar to what I’m walking through or maybe it’s something else.
Wherever you are today – happy or sad, content or dissatisfied, lost or found, strong in faith or doubtful – hear this: your sin, your sickness, your deepest darkest issue, and your most shameful hurt is not too big for God.
He delights in showing mercy. He is our healer and our safe place. He longs to bless us. He bears our burdens with us. And He will never, ever leave.
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As you probably assume, this post was hard for me to write and even harder for me to publish. Vulnerability is something that I continually have to work on and, especially in times like this, I can find so many reasons not to share. But God asks it of me, so I show up and write what I can.
It is my hope that God spoke to someone through this post. It is also my hope that we would all be willing to pray for each other in all the issues we face.
I ask that you pray for me during this time. For healing, yes. But more importantly that God is glorified above all else and that He’ll use this situation for good. In return, I’d love to pray for you. Feel free to reach out in the comments; I’d love to know how to be praying for you as well.