October 8, 2008
One of my favorite parts of the liturgical year is Lent. As a kid in Catholic School, I hated Fridays in Lent because it meant we had to go to Stations of the Cross. As an adult, it is one of the things I look forward to most during Lent. To verbally and emotionally walk the road that Jesus walked is amazing. To listen to each step of the agonizing journey toward His death and our Life reminds me of why I am a Christian; because this Man, this God, literally went through hell for me. It baffles me. One of my favorite of the 14 stations is 'Simon helps Jesus carry the cross.' I love that even the son of God needed help. I love that like me, Jesus could not carry the load on his own. His cross was too heavy at times. And mine seems too heavy at times too.
Without getting into too much detail on the world wide web, I've struggled for years with a chemical and spiritual depression. It is debilitating and shameful and horrible and gut-wrenching and so, so painful. But I've come to acknowledge the cliche that we each have a cross to bear, just like Jesus. Well, sometimes (today included), I'd like to tell Jesus that I will trade in this cross for whatever is behind door number two. I don't want this cross. I don't want to fight this battle within my stupid head. But if I'm honest, I don't want the cross of cancer or family tragedy or financial problems either. I know that the grass is always greener on the other side and I know that if I'm smart, I'll keep this Cross. Not only because a new cross may likely be worse, but because just maybe God has a plan for me and all the painful learning I've had to do in dealing with this junk.
And if I'm honest, I can endure this. Because in weeks like this, when I feel like I'm falling down more than I'm standing up, God gives me a Simon. He gives them to me in form of unconditional love from my parents, in the form of unending patience from a boy, in the form of girls in a Bible Study that know just when to send an emailed prayer. And he gave me Space. Jessica Space, the true Simon that He has chosen since I first started this little journey through my head 8 yrs ago. Every.Single.Time this stuff hits, she is there. She lifts the cross quietly, does her best to asauge the shame I always feel, and affirms that I do not need a trip to the psyc ward. I just need a little help carrying the Cross sometimes. And one day, I will stop feeling shameful about that. Right? I don't know what she did wrong for God to have chosen her for this job, but she does it well. And the load ALWAYS seems lighter because of her.
So, I guess the reason for this oh so light and fluffy post is for myself and anyone else to remember that noone expects us to go through this life alone, especially the rough roads. Jesus himself needed a Simon. So I guess it's not the worst thing in the world if I need one too.
So, while I would like for this post to be light and fluffy, I don't feel light and fluffy today. But that's cool. Maybe I'll feel that way tomorrow or Friday. I have a fun weekend coming up and I fully expect to be in rock-star mode for it (I promise R!).