Did you know you can forget?
When that happens the point from which you view life becomes totally skewed, unreliable and dangerous. Gee, do you think that might be exactly the deception the enemy whose purpose is to steal, kill and destroy (John 10:10) might want to accomplish in your life?
I find myself in the middle of migraine season, some people also call it spring. It’s worse this year than it has been the past few years. I have no answer for that. I’ve had momentary relief but not been able to break the cycle employing treatments that have helped me in the past. It’s been going on for about a month. And somewhere in the midst of this chronic pain, I forgot who I am.
I found myself this week sitting on the edge of my bed telling my husband “I don’t like being me.” It was one of those moments where you are both in the moment and watching the moment. It felt horrible from both perspectives. As the words were hanging in the air it was like I could see myself “slapping God’s face and saying I don’t like the way You made me”.
My husband tried to help me by reminding me this has happened many times before and you have gotten through it, overcome it. You’re not dying. You will get through this. He was speaking wisdom that God has always been faithful and will always be faithful.
I was not able to hear the testimony of past victory that my husband was speaking into my life, all I could hear was “this is never going to stop, it’s always going to be this way”. And, being authentic, with that perspective dying didn’t seem like such a bad option as compared to perpetual pain. Like I said, forgetting who you are creates a skewed, unreliable and dangerous point of view from which to live.
In the midst of an argument with myself that went something like “I don’t deserve this pain. Oh, you better be careful about what you think you do and don’t deserve … just think of what Jesus had to endure for you because of what you deserve.” Wait. Back-up. What Jesus HAD, past tense, to endure. It’s done. By His stripes I am healed (Isaiah 53:5; 1 Peter 2:24). Actually, I don’t deserve this pain not because of anything I have or haven’t done, but because of who Jesus is and what Jesus has done. The pain is very real and present, but it is also trespassing. The pain is not me, is not who I am. The Word of God, the Sword of the Spirit (Ephesians 6:17) was cutting me free from the lie that being me means being in pain and the only escape is dying.
But Holy Spirit did not stop there. He used an on-line course I’m taking to supply the truth with which to replace the lie from which He had just freed me. He reminded me of who I am … hope, love, joy, authenticity and healing. Being these qualities is who I am. Not only are these qualities who He made me to be, but this is what my world loses when I forget who I am. Hmmmmmm …. does that sound like something the thief would like to steal from me and those I love? Three guesses and the first two don’t count.
Is the migraine still present this morning as I write? Yes. Have I been able “to get it right” to have an answer for why the pain is still present? No.
Image found at Jacob Wrestles with God.
However in the midst, the One who loves me most, has connected with me in our wrestling match of my disdain about how He made me. He heard and answered the cry of my heart when I didn’t even know how to pray it (Matthew 6:8). My confusion about my identity was causing me to live as an orphan left to its own resources. As Jesus promised He did not leave me there (John 14:18, Hebrews 13:5). Connection with Jesus, the light that cannot be quenched by any darkness (John 1:4-5) and the truth to set me free (John 8:32) from the deception and lies of the enemy, has provided identity, comfort, freedom and unconditional hope (Romans 8:16 & 8:37) that is not defined by circumstance something that “getting it right” could never accomplish.
My prayer for you is whatever your pain is … physical, emotional, relational, spiritual, financial or any other form of pain … that you will openly share your heart (Isaiah 1:18-20) and wrestle with God (Genesis 32:28), connecting with Him so that He may speak to You your true identity to shatter the lie that the pain is you, your identity.