Sunday, October 11, 2015

Too Far Gone?

For a gentle friend who walks in the wake of tragedy, feels its weight and knows its name… and lives.

by Sarah Van Diest

“If we are faithless, He remains faithful – for He cannot deny Himself” 2 Tim.2:13.

Am I…
Too far gone for love to rescue,
Too expired for love to breathe into,
Too lost for love to find?

Sadness drapes itself over me. It wakes me by night to remind me of its presence and holds my hand by day, hinging me to the earth, guarding me from messages of hope, and shielding me from the light of the sun. It sings a low song of sorrow and defeat, its beat drumming out my downfall and demise. It claims ownership and demands acquiescence. Its mild exterior covers its wretchedness. Its humble and meek appearance veneers its brash and grotesque reality.

I long to shake it from my shoulders and break its grip on my soul. To rid my body, mind and heart of this overlayment that steals my joy is the desire that pushes me to seek Your love… to grope for You in this darkness.

I push forward past the walls of disbelief and choose to trust Your love over my assessment of my worthlessness. I have not found my own calculations of who I am to render me enough, but I trust You. You say I am enough, and You say You love me. What arrogance is it that trusts my own computations over Yours?

It is a moment, then another, and then another. Each moment I have a choice. The truth doesn’t change, but each moment offers me the chance to believe it or refuse it. Each moment I get to decide to walk with You or to walk with lies.

Sometimes…

…that ticks me off. I don’t like that it’s a choice. I don’t like that it’s up to me. I don’t want such responsibility. I want to be idle and submit to the forces that wish to draw me downstream. It’s so much easier and I am tired of fighting against my feelings that remind me of my worthlessness. It is those times, when I float down the river of lies, that I add to my sorrow a sense of expiration. I am too far gone for love to reach me. Too far gone for love to breathe into me. Too far gone for love. Period.

And then the choice emerges again. Do I believe the lies or trust the Father?

But sometimes…

…on those deepest of sorrowful days, the choice is forgotten or muted. The call to look into my Savior’s eyes is drowned out by the waves of pain lapping in my ears. Down the river I go. Down where the current takes me, through the rough waters, over rocks and into whirlpools, over waterfalls. Down into the darkest depths. Submerged in frigid water and sinking to the bottom, my eyes close one final time.

Pulled. Pushed. Turned and pushed on again, water forced from my lungs. Breath engulfing and overtaking. Eyes obliged open and my Savior’s face fills my view. I am saved. I am rescued. The anchor of sorrow, death and pain detach as my body is lifted effortlessly by the One who searched for me and found me; who left the 99 on shore to wade into the icy waters and pull me out.

I don’t understand. I didn’t make the good choice, Lord. I didn’t choose You today. I gave up. I stopped fighting. I lost the will to keep searching for You.

His voice trembles with the overflow of His devotion, “But I chose you! You are my child! I would not let you fall away. I would not let you be lost in the cold water. You are mine, and I will never lose you.”

It is up to us to make the choice to trust Him or not, but our destiny is not in our hands alone. It is not up to us to save ourselves. We are blessed when we choose life, but we are not lost if we fail. And we will fail. If our salvation from the things that threaten to undo us is in our hands only, if always making the right choices is what it means to be saved, then what is the faithfulness of God? What is the love our Father has for us? There are times we are helpless, even faithless, and wholly overcome…

There is a time for everything,
    and a season for every activity under the heavens:
a time to be born…and die,
    …a time to heal,
    …to weep and to laugh,
    …to mourn and to dance,
    … a time to give up….
(Ecclesiastes 3:1-6 with omissions).

…but the One who made us and loves us is the One who saves.

“Our God is a God who saves; from the Sovereign LORD comes escape from death” Ps. 68:20.

I am never
Too far gone for love to rescue,
Too expired for love to breathe into,
Too lost for love to find.

Sarah has worked in Christian publishing since 2005 as both and editor and an agent. 

Currently, she works with her husband, David, in their agency, the Van Diest Literary Agency. Writing is a growing passion for her as she hopes to bring hope to hurting hearts.

22 comments:

  1. I struggled with severe postpartum depression after the birth of my fourth child, do I can identify with these feelings. Praise the Lord we are never too far gone!

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    1. Thank you for sharing, Amanda. Postpartum depression is a powerful thing. Praise the Lord you are here to tell about it. We are never too far gone for love.
      Amen!
      Blessings...rest in Him today,
      Sarah

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  2. I cried during this. I have been there. I was talking to a friend yesterday about this very topic. She is in ministry and guilty that she feels deeply depressed. God taught me to "cease striving and KNOW that He is God." Psalm 46:10 NASB. I was striving to be joyful or happy; after all I am a Christian. His loving kindness engulfed me and reminded me that it is ok to be sad. David, that man after His heart, suffered deep dark days. God whispered to my spirit, "I am with you, I will guide you through the darkness and we will walk into the light together.
    Thank you for sharing. We need to be reminded that our souls are subject to depression and our God will never leave. May God bless you as you serve Him.

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    1. Amazing, Cherrilynn. Thank you so much for sharing your story. Our Father's timing is so good. Thank you for your words of truth! Don't ever stop proclaiming them! Our world needs them desperately.
      Blessings,
      Sarah

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  3. Sarah, This post is so beautifully written, so encouraging and so timely. Thank you.

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    1. Thank you, Maureen. Our Father's timing is so good. Thank you for the encouragement. It is very much appreciated.
      Blessings,
      Sarah

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    1. Thank you, Jennifer. You are always so encouraging.
      Blessings to you this day!
      Sarah

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  5. Thank you so much for writing this. My loved one suffers from chronic depression and this helped me better understand the struggle. Beautifully written!

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    1. Erika,
      I am so sorry for your pain...because I know that is what your words and your story represent. Thank you for your words of encouragement. I'm sure that's what your are, and who you are, to your loved one. Even when it doesn't feel like it.
      Blessings and hope,
      Sarah

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    1. Thank you, Joann. There is such beauty in His salvation.
      Blessings,
      Sarah

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  7. You captured the struggle--of the one who loses sight of the light, and of the one who's left behind to live--with depth and grace. Suicide survivors wrestle with many questions and have few answers. Your powerful piece comes closer to offering understanding than most writings I've read. Thank you, Sarah. It's beautiful. I only wish my daughter would have read this before the lies overwhelmed her and she chose to end her life.

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    1. Oh, dear Beth. You are such a blessing. I love your writing, your heart and you! Thank you for the encouragement. Sometimes I hate the truths we learn, but I love them, too. Keep writing, my friend.
      Much love and blessings,
      Sarah

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  8. "If our salvation from the things that threaten to undo us is in our hands only, if always making the right choices is what it means to be saved, then what is the faithfulness of God?"
    I love this! Thank you for your words!

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    1. Thank you, Kari. You found the heart of what I was saying. Our Father is so good!
      Blessings,
      Sarah

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  9. I needed to read this today! Thank you for sharing.

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    1. My pleasure, April. It is always good to hear from you!
      Many blessings today,
      Sarah

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  10. So beautifully written...so real and honest. Thank you for posting this particular blog to Facebook. I needed to read it๐Ÿ˜Š

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    1. Sweet Mindy,
      I miss you!!! I miss your amazing smile and sweet laugh. You know you were one of my first mentors? I'm glad you found the blog and that it was good for you to read. Let me know how you are doing... maybe through Facebook.
      Much love,
      Sarah

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  11. Thank you for sharing, Sarah. I really love that verse. One time during a struggle with depression over never having children, I had a picture of myself in the middle of a burned out desolate muddy forest. I was holding a broken doll, and I was dirty and tired. I could see Jesus at the end of the forest, beckoning to me. But I just could not get up. So he came to me, sat down next to me in the muck, and held me. Then he picked me up and carried me out. He was not afraid to get dirty, and he knew I couldn't do it on my own. Yes, we have to try hard sometimes. But sometimes we do just need to sit down and trust but he will be there no matter what.

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  12. Mary,
    That is so beautiful. It brought tears to my eyes. I can see it so clearly. Our Father loves us so dearly.
    Thank you so much for sharing your story. Precious.
    Blessings,
    Sarah

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