Father, I need to talk to You a moment. Oh, Lord God of Heaven and Earth please show me the way to find my way through this darkening storm before I sink into this hole with mom. I find myself with all the energy gone and wanting to just run into your arms, throw down this sword and rest a little while.. I want to spend my days just sitting and hearing your word or numbly clicking buttons on video games while with the other ear listening for your answer in sermon after sermon. There is so much work that needs to be done in the house and I feel myself grasping hard to hold onto the hope that I know I have in you. Still, there are moments that I feel that mom is trying to draw me into the insanity in which she lives. Am I that much different from her or have I merely hidden and bottled up all the same fears, depressions, and anxieties that have been hers. In a sense in her diagnosis of bipolar she has the freedom to act out or behave in manners that I could never dare to allow myself—me so tightly held together. Must get up and go to work, must religiously pay all the bills, follow all the rules, strive ever harder to be the best at work, striving always in search of feeling ok about me. Just like the song you gave me Lord, I so desperately want to learn to love me like you love me. I need to see me through your eyes. You have never failed me in these 50 years that we have walked together. I need your strength once more, I need Your wisdom to guide me through each thought, I need Your love to fill me to the point of overflowing.
I think back over all these years and You Lord have been my strength, my hope, my one true friend. You know Lord that on this earth, I have walked alone beside you—needing your still voice. I tend to carry my burdens and responsibilities out-just you and me God. Perhaps because I am afraid that anyone else would criticize me for some of the decisions I have made. I never was good at holding on to money and have given it away to just about anyone who asked and now I am pressed from all sides. With all the added expenses from mom; I need you to be that miracle worker and pull me out and make certain that each bill is paid as it must be—just as you have always done. Show me where the money should be given and do not let me run ahead of you—together we have always made a great team. Well, you know this team thing is you doing 100% and me just tagging along; but sounds nice to say team.
Mom called from the hospital today, Lord and she makes no sense—She asked for my phone number when she had just dialed it; then she asked for the name of the side street because she had to know that in order to call me. Then, Lord, she kept asking me not to lose her. The doctor said she is probably coming home this coming Sunday or Monday and so I ask Lord to fill me with Your presence that I might know what to say or do. I need You and only You Lord to guide my way.
We have been here before haven’t we? In the dark of the night I pleaded for Your strength to protect my children, to help me know what to do to keep them safe. After all my sons’ father was bipolar and undiagnosed formally. Such a brilliant man with a true heart of gold that got lost in that dark world of the bipolar mind; sometimes, acting more like a monster—the true Dr. Jekyll and Mister Hyde in living form. Still, You were always present to guide us through. He found Christ before His death and that means an eternity was changed because of you. The years and nights that I cried in my bedroom at night pleading that You show me the way. I begged of You to let me just walk away from Him; yet, You said no and that You had a plan. I pleaded for the children’s safety and You said You had that too. Little did I know that Your plan was to change the eternity of one soul. So I learned that there was no sacrifice too great to pay for the salvation of one soul; after all is said and done, Christ suffered more than anyone of us could ever imagine. His worst pain was that moment in which He was separated from You—so He could bare all our guilt, our shame, and our penalty. It is because of Him I can talk to You tonight.
So what about Your promise to care for the children? I know of no young men any wiser, kinder, or just than my two sons who both love You with a fervent passion and whose faith puts my best to shame. So why should I feel discouraged? I should not have a moment of fret; as I remember, all the times You have stood by faithfully fulfilling each of Your promises to me. I recall each time that You provided the money miraculously when it was needed at the last second. So many times You have held and healed this broken heart when it cried out in despair. So I thank You Lord for your ever present hope and joy.
This fragile heart sometimes just needs a reminder of all You have done in the past and I thank You for always taking to listen. Oh, by the way, I found a Psalm of David that pretty much fits this occasion. I guess He sometimes felt despair; but he knew where to find His joy again. I could almost hear His desperate cries in Psalm 42 which are turned into a joyous mocking of himself Psalm 43 for having ever felt any moment of fear or doubt.
1As the hart panteth after the water brooks, so panteth my soul after thee, O God.
2My soul thirsteth for God, for the living God: when shall I come and appear before God?
3My tears have been my meat day and night, while they continually say unto me, Where is thy God?
4When I remember these things, I pour out my soul in me: for I had gone with the multitude, I went with them to the house of God, with the voice of joy and praise, with a multitude that kept holyday.
5Why art thou cast down, O my soul? and why art thou disquieted in me? hope thou in God: for I shall yet praise him for the help of his countenance.
6O my God, my soul is cast down within me: therefore will I remember thee from the land of Jordan, and of the Hermonites, from the hill Mizar.
7Deep calleth unto deep at the noise of thy waterspouts: all thy waves and thy billows are gone over me.
8Yet the LORD will command his lovingkindness in the day time, and in the night his song shall be with me, and my prayer unto the God of my life.
9I will say unto God my rock, Why hast thou forgotten me? why go I mourning because of the oppression of the enemy?
10As with a sword in my bones, mine enemies reproach me; while they say daily unto me, Where is thy God?
11Why art thou cast down, O my soul? and why art thou disquieted within me? hope thou in God: for I shall yet praise him, who is the health of my countenance, and my God.
1Judge me, O God, and plead my cause against an ungodly nation: O deliver me from the deceitful and unjust man.
2For thou art the God of my strength: why dost thou cast me off? why go I mourning because of the oppression of the enemy?
3O send out thy light and thy truth: let them lead me; let them bring me unto thy holy hill, and to thy tabernacles.
4Then will I go unto the altar of God, unto God my exceeding joy: yea, upon the harp will I praise thee, O God my God.
5Why art thou cast down, O my soul? and why art thou disquieted within me? hope in God: for I shall yet praise him, who is the health of my countenance, and my God
Thank you for including these Psalms in the Bible to let me know it is ok if I falter in my faith; because You have enough faith for both of us; back to that team thing (You 100% and me tagging along). Keep your loving arms around mom as she walks in this dark valley. Heal her, Lord from all this fear and anguish. Help me Lord to be the daughter she needs; better yet, just kind of knock my old self out of the way and You do through me–
Love, your daughter Effie Darlene Barba