Trapped in a Pile of Mud
"When Jesus saw him lying there, and knew that he already had been in that condition a long time, He said to him, "Do you want to be made well?"1
A Daily Encounter subscriber shares his struggle saying, "My life is trapped in a pile of mud … down under the ocean."
"Dear Friend," I replied, "I am saddened to hear that you feel so downcast. You are certainly not alone in your struggle. For many, life is a struggle, a disappointment; or depressing. Speaking personally, I came from a very dysfunctional family background, felt rejected by my father, was extremely insecure in younger days, plus, because of my unresolved personal issues (damaged emotions), my first marriage was a disaster. Furthermore, because of my family background where love for me in my subconscious mind meant feeling rejected and being hurt, I was afraid to love and knew that if I didn't get the help I needed, I would be running from love for the rest of my life.
"However, with the support of good friends, in-depth professional counseling, and by the grace God, I have survived, and life for me these days has never been more fulfilling. My recovery, however, didn't happen overnight. It took determination, a steadfast commitment to "being made well," and lots of help. Note that Jesus didn't say to the crippled man, "Do you wish to be made well? It was, "Do you want to be made well?" To be made well, we need to want it badly enough to take full responsibility and do everything we need to do in order to be made well. The half-hearted never make it.
"Once you work through and resolve your pain, one of the most important things you can do is to 'invest your pain' as it were; by learning how to overcome, and then by becoming a wounded healer to support others in their recovery. I am quick to admit that if there is any quality and depth in the ministry that has been entrusted to me today, most of it has come out of my years of personal struggle and learning how to overcome.
"I encourage you to pray that God will reveal to you the pathway for your healing and recovery; that He will lead you to find the help you need to fully recover, and that He will then use you to become a fellow wounded healer. To find a highly qualified Christian professional counselor, if you live in the U.S. or Canada, I suggest that you call the office of the Narramore Christian Foundation at 1-800-477-5893, and press '1' for Dianne, and she should be able to give you the contact information for a counselor or two in your area.
"True, counseling can be expensive, but in many ways some of us can't afford not to receive it. For many months I worked two jobs at once—one in the daytime and the other at night—to pay for the counseling I needed.
"For today's suggested prayer I encourage you pray the following simple prayer at the beginning of every day for the rest of your life: 'Dear God, again today I commit and trust my life and way to You. Please help me to become the person you want me to be, and please use me to be 'as Jesus' in some way to every life I have contact with today. Thank You for hearing and answering my prayer. Gratefully, in Jesus's name, amen.'
"I have prayed this prayer every day since my youth and plan to keep praying it every day for the rest of my life. I hope that you will too. Given time and asking God to help you find the help you need to 'get out of the mud,' you will find that it will help you tremendously as long as you pray it consistently and sincerely.
"Furthermore, for a starting point, if you have never accepted Jesus Christ as your Savior knowing that your sins are forgiven by God, be sure to read the article, 'How to Be Sure You're a Real Christian' at: www.actsweb.org/christian. I'm sure, too, that some of the articles online at: www.actsweb.org/articles/Solutions.php will be a help. And I suggest that you read the book, You Can't Fly With a Broken Wing. This book was written out of my overcoming life's struggles, and can be purchased on sale at: http://actscom.com/store."
1. John 5:6 (NKJV).