In processing emotion, I have banged my fists against a door in utter frustration at myself for messing up again. I have hyperventilated and sobbed till I started to get dizzy. I’ve cried myself to sleep. I’ve let a debilitating ache lay on my heart for hours while I tossed in bed. Now, I’m not saying any of these reactions to pain are entirely healthy, recommended or even godly (especially the reactions with anger involved), but they were real and authentic displays of my weakness. My inability to do life on my own.
The beautiful thing is, I never had to go through any of those tumultuous times alone. Each time I felt paralyzed by my emotions – after my dad died, hearing my grandma say the words “stage 4 lung cancer,” uttering desperate prayers for a miracle after visiting her on hospice and knowing she was going to leave me soon, betrayal and abandonment from family and people I loved, helping family cope while grieving yourself, bills piling up — when life’s everyday concerns just seemed a little too much, Jesus was there.
Every time I let my emotions flood in, I had a very poignant knowing that God was with me; the Holy Spirit was comforting me. It was only when I took every scattered emotion, breathed them to life, and prayed them out (sometimes probably sounding like a lunatic to God) that my weakness felt like strength. I may have been knelt down in defeat and despair, but in actuality I was kneeling before the throne of God, laying curled up at the feet of Jesus and allowing the King of Kings access to my pain. Access to take it all on His shoulders and when all my pain was not just shared, but transferred to my Savior, He was able to redeem it. He was able to mold my pain into a reflection of His broken heart for the world and give it back to me in the form of compassion, freedom, power, empathy, love and purpose.