Have you ever felt like nothing before?
You don’t want to do anything.
You don’t feel like doing anything.
You just feel like you’re existing.
You only want to exist without feeling.
Because feeling is too hard.
I call this the spirit of apathy.
I’ve been fighting this nothingness for a while now.
It’s a sickness that has taken control of my soul, leaving me restless and unfulfilled.
I would wake up, brace myself for the day, go on about my routine and hope that I could hold my breath long enough to pass out before the day got too difficult. I’d go to work, dreading the kids and the co-worker drama with a sinking stomach and free-falling hopes. I’d go out with friends, not wanting to talk about the heavy stuff, but rather the nonsensical things, hoping they’d numb my heart. And, oh how heart kept hurting. Eventually, I’d hole up in my room, my laptop screen glowing in my face, blinding my eyes from what I needed to see, and headphones plugged into my ears to drown out that still small voice.
There was still moments when my supernatural reality would come crashing down around me and I’d have to come to terms with the fact that I was running. I was running hard, my feet slamming into the pavement, thudding in rhythm with a heart that was broken and stuttering. The problem with running for so long, is that it becomes habitual. Instead of slowing and sitting down at Jesus’s feet to hear what He had to say, I was running around like a crazed Martha, my hair array and my hands in a frenzy. I wanted to listen, but…I couldn’t. I had to do something, anything, or I’d hear Him. If I heard Him then…..then what? What would happen exactly?
The truth would come out:
I’m a sinner.
I can’t handle any of this.
I can’t make myself care enough to do anything about it.
Because if I start caring…then what?
It’s easier to sit in my room, blind, deaf, and dumb. It’s easier to pretend that everything is fine and as long as I don’t do anything too bad, right? I’ll be alright, won’t I?
God didn’t create us to suffer. And He doesn’t like to see us suffer, either. For, He cares deeply for us. Our lives are precious to Him. Scripture tells us over and over and over and over and over how much God loves us. His love is unfathomable and ceaseless. We can only love because He loved us first. Knowing all of this…why do we still choose this mind numbing nothingness? Why do we choose to run?
It’s because we’ve been lied to.
We’ve had those hisses in the ear telling us that to live like Christ is impossible and daunting and too much to ask for in this world of busy, busy, busy. We’ve been told that we shouldn’t apologize for who we are, but rather embrace it, flaunt it, and boldly live it out loud for the world to see and if they don’t like it, then they’re not worth our time. Speaking of time, where did it go? We never have enough time to really sit down and spend time in His word. We can try and pray, but will 5 minutes be ok, God? Wait, make that 2. Actually, if I just listen to some Christian music on the way to to work, that’ll count, right? Oh, but this is my jam! I’m just gonna shake it off, shake it off….
What was I supposed to do again?
I guess I’ll just catch up spiritually on Sunday…if I even go to church on Sunday…
We’ve been convinced of the greatest deception: that we don’t have the time. That we simply cannot do it. It’s impossible. And if we find the time, what do we expect to happen? Do we really expect to get any results? What about the last time this happened? And where are you now? Still at square one, aren’t you? Well, then what’s the point in trying anymore. It’s better to just not even try, then you won’t fail, right?
The thing that I’ve been missing, the thing that a lot of people have been missing, is that God loves us. He loves us for who we ARE. We are absolutely NO surprise to God. He already knows that we’ll fail. That’s why He sent His son. Jesus came to save us from our broken expectations that have left us shattered from so many failures. God already knows where you’ve been and where you’ll go. He only asks for you right now, as you are. Broken, dirty, and wrecked. He will make undesirable ashes into something beautiful.
So, my response to those lies:
TIME is something we have plenty of, every single day. Instead of zoning out in the shower, wondering how your busy day will go, how about you talk to God? Instead of scrolling through Facebook, to help your mind relax as you browse through people’s lives, how about some Bible time? Instead of listening to music while you drive, you can sit in silence and just have a chat with our wonderful creator. Or you could even get the bible on CD and listen to that instead. You can even listen to worship music and belt out at the top of your lungs your adoration for the beauty that is our life, our world, and our every breath! Instead of setting aside that special time for your favorite show, how about you sit down and study God’s word and let the truth of what you learn grasp your heart and sink down to the very depths of your soul until your roots start stretching and digging into the rich soil of the gospel.
DISCIPLINE is required in helping your spirit grow. I even made a post about that before. You have to make yourself do these things. Just like how losing weight takes effort and patience and endurance, so does becoming spiritually fit and healthy. You have to take the steps into having a healthy lifestyle. We are so quick to throw out the garbage in our fridge and cabinets to refresh with organic and non-gmo products so we can live a healthier life, but we can’t do the same for our souls? Throw out the garbage you listen to in your music. Throw out the garbage you read all over Facebook and online. Throw out the garbage television you watch. Replace all of that with Christ pointers, which is my way of saying things that lead to Christ. Your environment affects your attitude tremendously. If you have a godly atmosphere in your home, on your phone, your car, and even your workplace, you will see a drastic difference in your outlook on life and in your thoughts. Becoming spiritually sound with God is a lifestyle change, just like a diet. But you have to work at it to get it. However, the most amazing thing is that God is and always will be our strength, for He knows how weak we are. Patient endurance is what you need now, so that you will continue to do God’s will. Then you will receive all that he has promised Hebrews 10:36 NLT
Quit running. Quit breaking your heart about the things of this world. Quit accepting the spirit of apathy like a thin shawl that you hope will warm you in the bitter cold. Quiet your restless soul, for I know it is restless and waning. Listen to that still small voice and rest your head on the Father’s shoulder. Let His embrace take you back to the love that started it all. Back to the love that reigns forever more.