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Tuesday, June 21, 2016

He is speaking, this is real, now it's up to me to listen

For me, stress leads to worry, which leads to fear, which leads to anxiety,  which leads to a panic attack, which leads to a manic episode.        I have heard all the advice, offered by well-meaning people about how to handle my anxiety and stress:  deep breath, exercise, eat right, don’t sweat the small stuff, and the ultimate favorite of “earth people”…..let go and let God!     The difficulty I have is no matter how stress-free my life appears, my mind does not shut off and what’s worse is I continually evaluate and discern if my stress, worries, and fears are real or imagined.      

To give you an example of how my mind works, I have been concerned about the future of our nation.   I wrote in my last blog entry about how our country’s moral compass has been turned  “upside down” and that what was once considered right is now wrong and what was wrong is now considered right.    I have been filled with anxiety over this issue.     To complicate matters, I have been reading some of the religious prophecies regarding upheaval and strife that our world may face in the next year.   Most of the writings I have read predict a significant change in our government and society as a whole at the end of November of 2016, but they see a great miracle occurring in November of 2017 which causes a mass conversion to Christianity and a unification of all religions.    Now I’m no stranger to false prophets and crackpot predictions, but for some reason I can’t stop obsessing about the possibility of these prophesies becoming truth.    Could they be right?   My husband wants to plan a vacation for some time in the fall, and I find myself thinking “We can’t go, we need to prepare for the worst so we can survive to witness the miracle!”    Now the difference between medicated and non-medicated bipolar thinking is that being medicated  I recognize that my stress and anxiety is not logical.    If I were unmedicated I would do one of two things, either go completely off the rails morally, spend all my money and in the iconic words of our dearly departed Prince “Party like it’s 1999”,  or I would put all my money into a bomb shelter, stock up on army rations, and hone my “Naked and Afraid” survival skills.    

So to avoid a major mental meltdown, I have reached into my bipolar episode prevention toolbox and pulled out the best weapon I know….my rosary.     While praying the rosary, I’ve asked Mother Mary to intercede to our Lord, on my behalf, to relieve my anxiety and help me to distinguish between what is imagined and what is real.   Last week, during prayer I was drawn to visit a Marian Shrine in Burton, Ohio, Our Lady of Mariapoch.     The following is a link to this shrine so you can read about the history and miracles associated with her weeping icon,  The prayer related to this shrine is as follows: 

O most Blessed Virgin Mary, Mother of Mercy, adorned with miracles, whose icon shed tears at the place of your mercy in Mariapoch, we who honor you humbly beseech your motherly care.  Save our country from all its enemies; protect the church, and join all in one faith that, at last, the words of Christ may be fulfilled.  “There shall be one fold and one shepherd.”  Do not deny us your intercession, and obtain for us peaceful times, health for our bodies and peace for our souls.  Obtain the grace for us that our last hour finds us in the Christian faith and in a state of grace so that we may be enabled to gain eternal salvation.  Amen.   

I was shocked when I read the history of Our Lady of Mariapoch and the prayer associated with her icon.       The words of this prayer expressed what I was feeling and reaffirmed what I have been reading.    I saw this as a sign to pray and give my worries to the Lord.    I have no control over our government.   I have no control over future events.     My only defense is prayer.    So I have been visiting the shine as much as possible, lighting a candle, reciting this prayer and then sitting quietly in the presence of our Lord.   

My soul continues to pray, but my mind continues to worry; a classic symptom of bipolar disorder.     Last Wednesday, I was reading my daily reflection and the Gospel Reading for that day was Matthew 6:24-34 

“Therefore, I tell you, do not worry about your life, what you will eat or what you will drink, or about your body, what you will wear.  Is not life more than food and the body more than clothing?  Look at the birds of the air; they neither sow nor reap nor gather into barns, and yet your heavenly Father feeds them.   Are you not of more value than they?  And can any of you by worrying add a single hour to your span of life?   And why do you worry about clothing?  Consider the lilies of the field, how they grow; they neither toil nor spin, yet I tell you, even Solomon in all his glory was not clothed like one of these.  But if God so clothes the grass of the field, which is alive today and tomorrow is thrown into the oven, will he not much more clothe you—you of little faith?  Therefor do not worry saying, “What will we eat?’ or ‘What will we drink?’ or “what will we wear?’  For it is the Gentiles who strive for all these things, and indeed, your heavenly Father knows that you need all these things.  But strive first for the kingdom of God and his righteousness and all these things will be given to you as well.  “So do not worry about tomorrow, for tomorrow will bring worries of its own.  Today’s trouble is enough for today.”

After I read this passage I laughed, looked up to heaven and said “Really?     Take one day at a time!   This is your advice!”     So my prayers to our heavenly Father are being heard, but I need to listen and heed his words.   Why is this so difficult?     Why do I find it so hard to place my problems at the feet of our Lord and walk away?    I always think God is too busy to take care of my little problems, paranoia or craziness, so I have this tendency to leave my problems at His feet and then sneak back when I think He's not looking and take them back.    I need to remember that He is all knowing and all loving....He's got my back!        I've cried out to God to alleviate my anxiety, and he has answered me through scripture and prayer.   He is speaking, this is real, now it's up to me to listen!

1 comment:

  1. If you're at all interested in knowing . . . the Catholic Dogmas . . . that we *must believe* to get to Heaven . . .

    We list it on our website > > >

    The Dogmas have in fact ... been hidden from you.

    The Catholic God knows . . . what we think and believe . . .

    Catholic writing of Romans 1:21 >
    "They ... became vain in their thoughts, and their foolish heart was darkened."

    Catholic Faith (pre-fulfillment) writing of Job 21:27 >
    "Surely I know your thoughts, and your unjust judgments against Me."

    The fact that "islam" is not a religion is on Section 113.1 of the site. Mohammed in the "koran" wrote exactly the opposite of the Old Testament Prophets.

    Proverbs 30:4 > "Who hath ascended up into Heaven ... what is the name of His Son."
    koran - maryam 19:35 > "It is not befitting ... Allah that He should beget a son."