Previously I shared my experience with depression.  It’s like a dark, unlit tunnel that surprises you on your beautiful drive through the mountains.  Well friends, it’s not just depression that is like this.  So are death, broken relationships, unemployment — unforeseen circumstances of any kind that leave you completely blindsided and lost.  These are all of the same shock and send you on the same dark journey.

I had never experienced a loss like I recently have.  Never in my life could I have imagined the hole that I am feeling right now.  I’ve lost loved ones, friends, and pets.. I’ve experienced domestic abuse, divorce, lost friendships, and people moving away.. I’ve been through depression and hopelessness… but never did I expect to experience what I’m feeling as I write this..

About six months ago I finally decided to take a stand and claim my life back and start making decisions to live my life by God’s calling and no one else’s.  By listening to the voice of God I was lead home to the town I grew up in, where my parents live.  My father, being an amazingly strong and fierce emotional warrior stood by me and supported me every step of the way.  He would  move heaven and earth to protect me and provide for me.

Over the course of several months I had learned so much about my own inner strength and what it means to fully lean on God.  I was so broken and lost in a tunnel of uncertainty, that there was absolutely no chance of survival if I didn’t completely submit to God.  He was faithful and lined everything up to completely cover all my needs to get me home… exactly one week before my dad was diagnosed with terminal cancer..

That’s right.. I moved into my new house that my kids absolutely loved.. the next day my whole family began getting sick for the entire week.  At the end of that week we were at MUSC with my dad having been diagnosed the day before with Acute Onset Myelomonocitic Leukemia.  They projected he would be in the hospital for approximately 3-4 months getting chemotherapy… yet he survived only 7 days after this diagnosis.. our world as we knew it had completely halted, and we entered that tunnel of sudden darkness.  Although depression was not the case this time, all of the experiences were the same, and the only thing that would pull us through was how we would lean on the Lord to to be the lamp unto our feet, and the light unto our path.

When you experience a tragedy of some kind in your life, the temptation is to shut down, and stop moving.  My challenge to you is to find the light source and continue moving through that tunnel.  You may not be able to see the end, but if you can identify your surroundings and see what’s going on around you, the obstacles in front of you, and which way the tunnel is turning, you are guaranteed to come out on the other end.

While I believe strongly that God calls everyone to lean on Him, I recognize that not everyone feels this way.  Yet, I know beyond a shadow of a doubt that God is the reason I’ve made it to where I am.  Take a step back and examine your heart and your mind.  What truly carries you through when things get tough?  What directs your paths when you don’t know where to go?  Do you listen to your inner voice or do you listen to others?  Do you believe in yourself to make good decisions or do you follow the crowd?  Until you can fully trust yourself, you may be stuck in darkness.  However, when you can find the light God provides you to light the tunnel you are stuck in, you begin to walk again and navigate in faith and confidence.

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