Tuesday, April 1, 2014

Held In His Arms...

     It has been a while since I've posted, yet it feels like it has been forever. Life has been throwing me around in all different directions. Just last week, I was struggling with my faith and testimony so much I thought I would leave the Church, or at least stop going. This Sunday at Church, my ward had a lesson during priesthood and relief society (it was combined) that I felt was inappropriate for as a full block meeting, and so I said something during that meeting. Sharing my addictions and SSA was part of what I said in objection to the topic being taught, and my bishop waived my concerns, accompanied by sneers and hand gestures of distaste from my fellow ward members. I felt extremely unwelcomed in my own ward, and wanted nothing more than to leave the class right then, but didn't. Instead I waited until Church was through and left as promptly as I could feeling hurt and disrespected.
     I realized I hadn't been praying at all for almost 2 weeks straight, and I wasn't reading my scriptures either. I had a few relapses with my addictions, my depression hit hard, death seemed to be a constant topic of my thoughts, and meaning in life was minimal. Any potential love I could have felt for myself was completely void. My contact with God had practically ceased, and in my loneliness and hurt, I became angry and frustrated with God believing He had left me, and that it was His fault I was struggling. This only fed my separation from Him further, resulting in me pushing Him out of my life, while still ignorantly questioning why He was letting life become so hard and why I felt so abandoned.
      Then, a blessing God sent me over half a year ago who has been my best friend reminded me that God loved me, and that if I was going to be happy again, I'd need to let Him back into my life. I made a resolve earlier this week to get myself on my knees to pray to God, to read my scriptures, and to listen for that still small voice. It hasn't been easy by any means, and it has only been a couple days, but I can already see a difference.
     I've also decided to start a gratitude journal which, unlike the majority of my writing, will be for my eyes only unless I feel the need to share it with someone. I will share a few things that I am most thankful for. My best friend who has been by my side through some of the worst moments of my life, listened to my deepest heartaches, known of my biggest regrets, and through it all has loved me more than I thought any human could and has constantly turned me to God. My family, who I have constantly hurt and pushed away, yet they help me as I am trying to figure out life, and love me and invite me home to be with them even when I make mistakes. The pets I've had, both here and passed, and the impact they've had. A Heavenly Father who loves me perfectly, and forgives me even when I knowingly disobey Him, completely betray Him, and push Him away; who holds me and tells me He loves me even if sometimes I can't hear or feel. For the unique gifts God has given me, and the people in my life.
     I've realized that my favorite feeling in the entire world is being held by someone I love, to feel a close connection, not just physically, but spiritually, socially, and emotionally. When someone I love gives me a real, loving hug, runs their hands through my hair, rubs my shoulders, shows me affection, that's when I feel the best. Through the people in my life who love me, I am constantly reminded of the even more powerful and true love God has for me. Sometimes I look at the American culture and see how much it has misconstrued affection, particularly for men, and it saddens me to know most people in the US may never experience true and loving affection, but at the same time, in my case, it makes me even more thankful for the people in my life willing to disregard incorrect social norms and show me physical affection.
     It will definitely still be a journey to come close to God again, and to find true happiness, direction, success, and fulfilment in this life, but I know I can attain it because of my Savior Jesus Christ who loves me, forgives me, and atoned for me. I love God, I love the blessings He has given me, and I love the people He has put in my life. Life has a funny way to throw me into the deepest pits, chain me in the cruelest dungeons, and break me in a million ways, but God always shows me the way to climb back up again, break free of my bonds, see the sweet in the bitter, and help me attain true happiness. I know I've felt great happiness this week as I've turned back to Him. And when I am held in His arms, there is nothing I can't do.
     If anyone is struggling, if anyone reading this feels like there is no hope, that you don't know where you're going in life, you don't know how you can make it another day, or maybe you just don't feel as close to God as you would like, I promise you there is hope. I promise there is a God who loves you, and I promise no matter what you decide, no matter what you've done, He will always love you, and always want you back home with Him.

1 comment:

  1. Hey Mitchell, I always love reading your blog and always find it to go almost exactly along with what I'm going through at that time in my life. Thank you for sharing who you are, what you're experiencing, and who you're becoming! I love you bro and I will always have a nice big long hug waiting for you.