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Inspirational article from Joanne Lowe

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ďAnd he saith unto them, But whom say ye that I am? And Peter answereth and saith unto him, Thou art the Christ. And he charged them that they should tell no man of him. And he began to teach them, that the Son of man must suffer many things, and be rejected of the elders, and of the chief priests, and scribes, and be killed, and after three days rise again.Ē

Mark 8: 29 Ė 31 King James Version

This devotional is very difficult for me to write as it reveals more of the pain that was in my heart for so many years. God has been speaking to me to write this for three months but I told Him that He would have to literally type it for me because it hurts so badly. So as you read this devotional today, know that God Himself is typing this through my fingers.

During those long and seemingly endless years of crippling devastating depression, the thing that hurt me the most and felt like a dagger thrust into my heart was the way everyone expected me to keep doing my job and everything else like I was supposed to do. I would see someone in a wheelchair and would watch as people would rush to assist him or her because they knew that the person was unable to take care of himself or herself.

I was just as crippled as the people in the wheelchairs were and I was unable to perform even the basic needs of life, much less continue working and doing other things that I had always been able to do. Yet, not one time during those forty plus years of wandering in the heartache and anguish of depression did anyone say to me ďI understand. I know that you want to work and do all the other things but you just canít do themĒ. All I ever received was criticism because to them it seemed like I was either lazy or just didnít want to do them.

It wasnít their fault that they didnít understand. I couldnít tell them about the pain, anguish and horror that were buried so deep in the depths of my heart because I didnít know myself. I was completely dead inside. How could they understand when I didnít understand? I didnít know why I couldnít work either and so I sunk deeper in depression because I felt that I was useless and a burden. It is crucial that we become encouragers to one another instead of judging and being critical.

No, I couldnít do the things that I used to do just as the people in the wheelchairs were unable to do them. Praise God that the Saviour of the world saw my helplessness! One day Jesus reached down and picked me up out of the depths of my pain and horror and put His arms of compassion, tenderness, understanding and love around me and held me close to His heart. He has never let me go, not even for a second. I have left Him, and yes, even at times ignored or forgot about Him, but He has always been with me because He is faithful.

I am so grateful to God for all the pain that I endured because I can understand and see into the hearts of people and know they are hurting even if they donít tell me. Although I suffered tremendous anguish, horror and pain, it was nothing compared to the suffering that Jesus had to endure while He was here on earth. What breaks my heart is that even today He is still hurting because of the way we treat Him and others.

O that everyone would fall in love with Jesus and make Him happy! Making Jesus happy should be the top priority in every personís life. His happiness should be more important to you than your jobs, your money and your possessions. He deserves to be happy after all the agony, heartache and suffering that He has endured for us. Is making Jesus happy your top priority?

Joanne Lowe
January 14, 2007

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