Monday, 13 February 2017

On Reaching Out by Susan L.

  Before church on Sunday, I spoke with my pastor's wife about my increasing struggle with anxiety. Blogging about it and speaking about it diffuses its power. I could feel myself relaxing a bit for the first time in weeks.
 Even so, having someone sit beside me who blocked my "escape route" was enough to set the alarm sirens off again.
  I know, logically, that this person wasn't a threat. I know, logically, that there wasn't anything to flee from. I know, logically, that church is a safe place.
  I wish it was as easy as simply "getting over it", of telling myself there's nothing to be afraid of. I wish the fight/flight response would fly away. I wish the automatic takeover of my emotions and adrenal glands would up and leave!
  It's a vicious cycle. An adrenaline rush stirs up memories like leaves before a gale force wind. Those unwanted memories feed the adrenaline.
  Part of our church's foundation is that of community. We are being encouraged to lean on each other in times of trial. It's hard for me. Wary when it comes to relationships, gambling a tentative trust in others takes a huge amount of what...courage? Determination? Or maybe it's simply because I've reached a point where there's no choice but to reach out. It's a "git 'er done" moment.
  When I got home, I could feel myself spiralling into despair. I had backed out of doing the painting for the fundraiser. It's beyond my abilities right now. It was also a huge sign that things are not good. So. Choices. Do I sit and wrestle my demons on my own? Or do I reach out?
  I thought about talking to the worship team leader. I thought about calling my small group leader. I ended up emailing my pastor after battling down my fear of trusting someone I don't know that well.
  He doesn't usually check his inbox on a Sunday but felt led to check his mail moments after I had sent the letter. I was surprised, and most grateful for, how soon the phone rang.
  In the midst of trials, there is much to celebrate and be thankful for.
  It's reassuring to know that everything will be okay. God has got this under His wings.
  I felt better after talking with my pastor. Sharing my struggles cut the load in half. Just like blogging about it helps me find the good in all the mess. We are meeting later this week. Right now, it's about getting through to the end of March when I go for an inner healing appointment at Singing Waters: another step towards overcoming my foe.
  Prayers are greatly appreciated.
  "For by grace you have been saved through faith, and that not of yourselves; it is the gift of God, not of works, lest anyone should boast. For we are His workmanship, created in Christ Jesus for good works, which God prepared beforehand that we should walk in them." Eph 2:8-10


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