A Note From Dad

The Storm Within

It’s dark in here. The darkness is soul-piercing. It’s an evil kind of darkness, that has enveloped me. The cold that lives here in the dark is alive. It moves and sways around me. I cannot escape it, though my soul yearns for warmth and light. My mind cries out for it, and I cannot find the refuge I seek in it. The light, and the warmth it provides, has escaped me. I so desperately need your warmth and light Lord.

As I sit here in the dark, my emotions are painfully at the forefront of all I do. I do not like dealing with my emotions, and I am now swimming in a sea of them. They churn around me, tossing me to and fro, like a small boat in a turbulent ocean. They crash over me in waves, threatening to capsize me with every toss. They are never ending, and ever changing. In one moment, I’m sad and grief-stricken. In the next, I’m angry and filled with rage. In the next, I’m isolated and alone. The constant barrage is endless, always hitting me when I least expect it. Throwing me off balance in the least convenient of times.

It is wearing on me. I’m tired. Physically, I feel like I’ve run a marathon, knowing another marathon awaits me. And yet I feel somewhat catatonic. Disassociated. Like I’m walking in a fog. Apart from the reality of the life going on around me. Mentally, I’m done. Exhausted. Emotionally, I passed the point of exhaustion long ago, and yet I carry on because by your design, my emotions have to go where I go. I long for peace and cannot find it. I search for joy, and it hides from me. My mind and soul desire rest, and it escapes me at every turn. I don’t think I have much left to give. I do not want to be short-tempered and without compassion toward my children any longer. I do not want to be lacking in patience and gentleness. It’s not by any fault of theirs that I am here, and I struggle to not take it out on their precious, trusting and innocent little souls. Lord, I cannot continue on like this.

Father, you knit me together in the womb and knew me before time began. You held me when I was without form, and you made me who I am. I believe with all my soul that I am here for a reason. I do not know what that is, and I don’t think I could handle knowing it right now if you revealed it to me. But I know and believe that you have a plan for this. And for me. I know you are still working on and in me, molding me into the child you want me to be when I return home to you. I know that this life holds grief, loss, and struggles. I believe in the power of your name. I believe in the shelter and protection provided in your embrace. I believe in the grace and mercy you provide through your Son. I am not worthy of your love and affection, Lord. I ask only this Lord.

Help me to find peace within the chaos of my soul. Help me to ward off the devil, as he is so very much at the root of the evil stirring up within me. If I am to be here in this present darkness for a spell, Father please strengthen me for the journey. I pray my spiritual preparation before now is enough to carry me through. If my journey in this valley is to endure, please light a glimmer of hope within me so that I may walk toward You. Please help me to learn what you would want me to learn through this. My suffering is nothing in comparison to what you endured on the cross for me. Forgive me of my sin so that my prayer may be heard.

I draw upon your guidance, found in James 1:2-3 “Consider it pure joy, my brothers and sisters, whenever you face trials of many kinds, because you know that the testing of your faith produces perseverance.” Lord, help me to find the joy you speak of. A joy I remember feeling once. A joy I know only comes through you.

Father, calm the storm within me and help me to seek you daily. I know that I am not alone, that you are carrying me. That I can find you when I stop and look. Help me to be still, Lord, and listen for you. To watch for you. To allow you to speak to me. To be still and know that you are God, and I am not. To seek your Light. For it’s only by your Light that I will be saved from this storm within.

Love,

Your faithful child and servant

2 thoughts on “The Storm Within”

  1. My heart broke as I read your thoughts today. I remembered times when I came home from a shift and reacted in much the same way you talked about with my own children. Then I remembered the looks on their faces when I dealt with them harshly or unjustly. If I was to remember only those things, my failure as a father, even though that failure was not a reaction I could control at the time, I would be with you in that dark place. This is Satan’s trick, to remind you of your failure both as a father, but more importantly as a follower of Christ.

    I thank God because He reminds me daily and sometimes minute by minute that I am redeemed and my failures are covered by His blood. This has allowed me to forgive myself for my reactions that I couldn’t control because of the issues I was dealing with from a call or shift.

    The icing on the cake would be one or both of my daughters crawling into my lap for a snuggle and saying, “I love you, Daddy!” despite how I had treated them.

    I write this to you not to say how good I am but to hopefully encourage you. God has forgiven you, and redeemed you, and has the power to heal your wounds and cover your scars. This last post talks of that and I am praying for you that God will give you the peace you long for. I am also praying for you wife and children, that they will be able to understand where you are and give you grace and encouragement as you work through this difficult time.

    Dave

  2. Dave, thank you for the comment. I apologize, because I thought I replied to this back when you shared it, but in looking through the site today found that I had not. Thank you for sharing your story. What a great God we serve that He forgives us and redeems us!! My walk through this struggle has been much lighter the past month or so…in part because I’ve been so busy with life, but mostly because I feel God helping me to heal when I write. Thank you for the encouragement brother!

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