I recently shared about the current season I’m in with my dearest beloved sister-in-law & mentor. Depression. Anxiety. Restlessness. Hopelessness. Just a few things we’re wrestling with recently. There are no words to describe this journey but that it’s been a rollercoaster. It’s so true when specialists & counselors say that there are no two battles that are identical. Suffering is not linear and is incomparable. My journey of brokenness will look differently from yours and from the next person. The same applies to hers.
One day could be bright and filled with energy and the next could be dark and heavy. Every day is unpredictable. I’m learning to not make expectations for what my “tomorrows” are going to look like. I once read somewhere that “expectations are disappointments waiting to happen.” It’s harder to do than it actually sounds. Like most things in life ofcourse but I continue to remind her, “One day at a time. One moment after another. That’s how God sustains us.”
On the toughest of days, I found myself in despair. Worried about what the day was going to hold for her. As I begrudgingly pulled myself away from her standing there in the dark hallway of our home, she stood there in petrified tears trembling in fear with deep anguish. I had to leave for work but my heart didn’t want to. Out of desperation, I realized that we couldn’t keep on like this. No, not if we wanted to see a shift & a completely whole restoration for her.
As I faced the usual daily traffic to work, I wrestled with the Lord in my heart. “What can I do God? How am I supposed to just leave her like this? Will she be okay? Will she make it through today?” Questions that flooded my mind. As the morning rolled, I felt a reminder placed on my heart, “ Prayer in community is your weapon.” Not knowing where to begin, shortly after I got to work, I simply picked up my phone and sent out texts and messages to anyone and everyone I could think of.
There was so much determination that arose from inside me as I drafted out my cry-out-for help-text. Yet almost instantaneously, so much doubt rushed through me as well as I was about to tap my finger on the ‘send’ button. “What will people think of me? Will my friends even want to pray with me? Is this issue so big that I would need to reach out to everyone on my contacts list?” Shame whirled up inside me & I started considering backing down at that moment.
Immediately, I felt the comforting words again, ”Prayer in community is your weapon.” All those doubts and fears were just leading me off course. I bravely pressed the button and within minutes, friends from all over filled my inbox with encouragement, prayers, & even a word of thanks for allowing them to walk this season with us! I was just floored by the love of God moving through people. Through community. I learned a lesson that morning that will forever shape me. A prayer request is an invitation.
An invitation to witness God’s miracles. To honorably carry other people’s burdens to The Cross. This had nothing to do with me but everything to do with His glory-revealing. A small act of despair invited people from all over to be a part of this season. It had nothing to do with me and e v e r y t h i n g to do with Jesus. By inviting others in to link arms with us, God was revealing to me that He wanted to do something greater than even what we could ever expect.
Slowly, before my eyes, I began to see an army form. Prayer warriors that passionately stood up to the frontlines. Men, women, brothers, & sisters contending for my sister, her family, and for me. This is community. This is the Body rising up to lift another up in times of darkness, despair, & suffering. I was beyond humbled & honored to witness & experience God’s goodness. So much so, that I had to document it here.
Healing can’t happen in isolation friends. It comes in community. It looks like lifting one another up. Through prayer, through acts of service. Breaking bread together. Laughing & crying together. Healing comes when we allow others to come in and help carry off the heavy burdens that we no longer can. Healing happens in vulnerability. In communities that create a safe space for you to just be.
imperfect. broken. messed-up. flawed. confused. unsure. alone.
Community isn’t something that we want, it’s something we need. May you find healing in your community & if not yet, may you find healing here. You are loved & welcomed here.
Photos by @corinnekupishphoto @thatgirltrip