Dark Night of My Soul- 6/6/2013 with new forward
I am finding the healing that is coming by revisiting the old stories I wrote during my journey through dark nights. I am finding the connection in it all, and that the spirit has always been moving me and I have always been following.. it just looked much different than what everyone told me (and what I had ‘hoped’) my life would look like. The death of the ego is dark and cold, but I can see that I have always had the strength inside of me to rise above and answer my heart, my dreams.. and ultimately love over fear.
The ‘GOD’ I reference in this post no longer holds true for my ideology. Re-reading, it feels so limiting and so closed minded for what I now know exists and moves through us all. I have found myself calling her/him/force ‘god’ lately because I do not feel I have any other terminology- maybe spirit, but even that seems limiting. The word ‘GOD’ triggers within me old constructs that no longer serve my highest good or the highest good of humanity, and it causes a semi-aversion. I say that to say, I hope in reading this you can hear the love in my heart and the longing for something greater than myself and the faith in the spirit inside and not be triggered by the closed-mindedness of the word “God” due to past conditioning.
So, I’m reposting some of these old blog posts so that myself, and whomever reads this can see how a heart and life can be transformed so drastically through grace. These old words are the words of a heart and soul that is being transformed. I will sing to you my new song, but actually it’s the song that has been inside of me since I was a little girl.. I have just learned how to unlock it and sing it clearly, without fear and through the lens of love (but I’d like to think that’s how I always operated?)
The following post was written on 6/6/2013
Over the past 5 years my life has been turned upside down. In the span of five years, I have had two jaw surgeries (one of them being a facial reconstructive surgery), a knee surgery, have had my thyroid removed (thus sending me into hypothyroidism), got diagnosed with Celiac Disease & intolerances to dairy and eggs, battle migraines, moved across the country and then back again, got married, lost two pregnancies, battle with endometriosis and have had surgery to remove some the polyps, been diagnosed with Ehlers-Danlos and fibromyalgia (chronic pain & fatigue), and have had chronic sinus infections and a surgery to help those.. and have been in and out of depression.
And somewhere in the middle of all of that crazy, He became silent. I don't know if it was something that happened all at once, or if it was more gradual.. I just know that I could no longer feel Him and see Him working like I needed. A mentor of mine gently told me that I was experiencing what some would call "The Dark Night of The Soul".
I would spend hours crying out to God, begging for healing..begging to hear His voice, but all I would hear was silence. I would sit in the shower as the hot water poured over me, holding my head with my tears silenced and hidden by my wet hair asking why He had left me. With my body in so much physical pain, I knew the only thing that could sustain me could be His companionship, and His presence. But for two years those things were completely absent from me. It was like walking through a desert blindfolded, yearning for water to quench my thirst yet finding none.
But even in the silence and in His absence and in my pain I proclaimed His goodness. I don't claim to know answers to life's hard questions, but I did know that even in sorrow and pain God is ultimately good. I was reminded again and again of the story of Daniel crying out for deliverance and God sent an angel right away.. but the angel didn't reach Daniel until much later. Daniel was mad wondering why he hadn't reached him sooner. And the angel said he was battling spirits in the heavenly realms, taking care of things that were greater and more urgent. I was reminded over and over again that even though God hadn't responded He may have sent his angels to guard me, but then were tending to things larger than anything I could comprehend. And I held tight onto that story, knowing that God DID hear me.
My spirit relished and sought refuge in the prayers of my brothers and sisters. I can honestly say that during the darkest days, they interceded on my behalf and prayed for me when I could not longer find words to pray myself.
Late one night my husband and I went to a tattoo parlor in downtown Nashville and got the words, " Jehovah Rapha" tattooed onto our arms. Because we needed to be reminded everyday that GOD IS HEALER. That He can heal, and that even if he chooses not to heal my body, we will rejoice and proclaim His Goodness. Daily I see those words and thank God for who He is. I thank Him for caring so much about my spirit that He hasn't chosen to heal all my physical ailments. I know he uses them to mold me and bring me into surrender every day to His purpose. I know that He is more concerned about the state of our spirits and souls than He is our physical bodies.
I do not think I "feel" the presence of God like I did before I entered into the dark night. I do not know if I will ever "feel" Him like I did before I have walked through the valley. But I do know that I can see Him at work again. My constant prayer through my journey has been that He will be seen through me.
In January I was sitting with a friend, and she started to cry as she told me that she could feel the presence of Jesus radiating from my body. That she knew our time together was Holy and that even if I couldn't feel Him changing me or Him working through me that HE WAS. There has been nothing more sacred to me than those words that she spoke into my life.
Over the past couple of months I have started to emerge out of the dark night. I have seen God's workings so evidently in my life.. the way He has brought people into my life to encourage me, the way He has used my story to encourage others, He has opened doors for Doctors appointments, and has allowed me to pursue my passions like I never imagined possible. My faith is not what it was before I entered into this time of surrendering, but it is so much more. I no longer trust in God because of what He can do for me, but simply for who He is. In the pain and the suffering and the sadness and loss He Is Good. And I can say that will full confidence after losing every part of myself that I held so dear, and losing life that He formed inside of me.
We live in such a fallen world, and I am forever longing for the day when He makes all things new. I long for the day where there will be no pain and no suffering, no sadness and no death. Through the heartache and the loss I can catch glimpses of Heaven like I never could before, and I feel delight when I think about the day I will be able to hold my babies in my arms for the first time.
"I waited patiently for the LORD;
He inclined to me and heard my cry.
He drew me up from the pit of destruction, out of the miry bog,
and set my feet upon a rock.
He put a new song in my mouth,
a song of praise to our God."