About six months ago, I wrote a letter to God.
Admittedly, this wasn’t exactly news to Him. Nor was it particularly surprising to family and close friends. It is something that’s been part of my life since my early teens. But still, I’ve never owned it like that.
I was too afraid to. I treated it as a moral failing on my part and evidence that somehow I was irredeemably flawed. I didn’t treat it like what it is: a very complex illness with both psychological and physiological elements, an illness where the fears of my soul collide with crappy synapses that just don’t work like they should.
Now, I am clawing back my peace as grace of God works more and more in my life.
Peace is feeling brave.
Peace is having a bad day – but knowing that that doesn’t make me a bad person. It’s not crying when I wake up every morning, nor sobbing alone at 3am because I can’t get to sleep. Again.
Peace is not living with a constant tightness in my chest or ache in my jaw or gnawing sadness in my soul.
Peace means not wondering why a building couldn’t just fall on me and get it over with. Or a bridge. Or what if that truck careened off the road, would that do the trick?
Peace making choices, not letting fear make them for me.
Peace is wanting to leave the house, and being able to do so without 1/2 hour of talking myself through it, praying frantically, calming techniques and above all, bribery (usually chocolate). Seriously, these days I’m like “See ya later housie! You ain’t the only safe place in the world! I got me some adventures to have!”
Peace means the waves of shame and panic still, but they come as occasional visitors.
And then they leave.
Peace means trying new things, making plans, going to the gym, applying for jobs, having dinner with friends. It means writing, and giggling, and smiling because as I look out my window, the sky is royal blue, the clouds look like ermine and I’m imagining the whole earth is draped with the robes of a king.
Peace is knowing there really is a great king, “who sits enthroned above the circle of the earth… who stretches out the heavens like a curtain, and spreads them like a tent.” (Isaiah 40:22)
Peace is living as a daughter of a great king.
Peace is prayer and supplication with thanksgiving. Peace is making my requests known to God. Peace is in the confessional.
“And the peace of God, which surpasses all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus.” (Php 4:7)
This is peace.
And it is marvelous.
This post is linked up to the Not Alone Series.