Monday, November 01, 2010

I Know Hope

I greeted the arrival of November 1st late last night, laying in bed and watching the clock flip slowly from 11:59 to 12:00.  I watched one of my least favorite days of the year end, and one of the the most special days in my year begin.  And there was deep peace and joy in acknowledging that the threshold had been crossed - that I'd reached that five year mark of healing that seemed so elusive at times.

A few minutes past midnight and my phone buzzed with a text message - a dear friend in a different country and time zone had been quietly keeping vigil too, and had waited up to send me a message celebrating 5 years of healing.

I've told the story before - of that night when I sat in a dark car with a good friend, and encountered God in a profoundly new way.

It's part of the dialogue of my life, this day.  November 1st. 

And it's been 5 years since that night in the car with my friend.  5 years since God intervened.

I'd lived with depression for 7 or so years.  Every time I thought it couldn't get worse, that my existence couldn't become darker, it did.  There had been a few brief reprieves, but nothing lasting.  Despair and hopelessness were the emotions of the moment.  The few prayers I still prayed were either colored with anger at God, or exhausted begging.  I had good Christian guilt and would never have taken my own life, but I spent many a night trying desperately to sleep and begging God that this would be the night where any waking I did would be in Heaven.

Five years ago today my life changed.

It took me several months to understand the scope of that.  To really be able to trust that it was true when I voiced the words, "I've been healed."

They have actually been five of the hardest years of my life.  Many of them marked with days and weeks where I wondered if I would actually reach another anniversary of healing and still be able to say, "By God's grace I'm depression free."

This year has had many of those days and moments too.

But the overwhelming hopelessness that marked the days of depression has never returned.

And as I pause to mark this day, that is perhaps the greatest gift.

To know hope, even in the darkest places that I've walked and walk.

Today, I'm pausing to celebrate hope.  Hope and healing, and a God who carries both and offers them as irrevocable gifts.  A God who has offered those to me, and continues to teach me to stand in them, to delight in them.

It's been 5 years.

The cast of characters in my life has changed time and time again.  Those who celebrated with me at year 1 are scattered.  The friend who was with me that night is one I rarely see or hear from these days.  Life today looks nothing like what I'd envisioned five years ago, or even one year ago.

But God has been faithful as I journey.

And I know hope.


Anonymous said...

You know hope :) and you also share Hope with all who read your blog, and have the benefit of hearing your prayers. You are a blessing. Thanks for sharing your healing story again. Congrats on the 5 year anniversary. That is definitely worth celebrating.

Anonymous said...

Wish we could be spend the day how you've schemed on your list some day to do! Some day... :-) Enjoy celebrating your day. You're loved, friend!

lois said...

Rejoicing in your 5 years! :-)
God is faithful.
God is gracious.
God is good!
Blessings as you continue the journey!

Lisa said...

Thanks all :)

christianne said...

Celebrating with you today, Lisa. What a gift, these 5 years ... I can tell you cling tight to that hope God graced you to receive. xoxo

tea said...

You know hope.. That is awesome! Thank you for sharing what God has done in your life. I'm so glad you are celebrating today! He is so faithful.

Lisa said...

Thanks Tea and Christianne for celebrating with me :)