By Nancy Virden (c)2022
For close to five years, it hung on my wall – a brown paper and marker set of questions. When I moved in 2015, the new paper was green and the inquiry less challenging. Again, I placed it where my eyes were forced to see it first thing in the mornings.
What kind of person do I want to be?
What step will I take today toward becoming that person?
In the beginning, I measured my values against my life. Did I want to be valued for my depression? No. Did I want to suffer longer? No. Did I want life to be full of purpose and joy? Yes. What steps would take me closer to the latter?
In the middle of a major depressive episode at the time, sometimes a step was as tiny as taking a shower. Getting out of bed was also a big deal. Emotional resilience grew stronger, and steps became bigger decisions such as choosing to teach in my church.
Finally, I made a genuine decision to learn what enjoying life means. That was new. Despite many wonderful experiences, my hope for living with enjoyment had been dependent on temporary and uncertain things such as circumstances and other people’s choices. Asking these questions each day changed that view, building the freedom of knowing I could thrive.
Faith in Jesus our Messiah was one of my values. I wanted to honor God. A therapist told me, “Suicide does not honor God. Living in the strength and hope He provides, does.” That motivated me, too.
What kind of person do you want to be? Are you living your values?
What one step can you take today toward becoming that person?
Today’s Helpful Word
Psalm 25: 20-21
Guard my life and rescue me; do not let me be put to shame, for I take refuge in you. May integrity and uprightness protect me, because my hope, Lord, is in you.
If you are feeling suicidal, or concerned about someone who is, in the U.S. call the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline 1-800-273-TALK (8255), or for a list of international suicide hotlines, go here.
If you are suicidal with a plan, immediately call 911 in the U.S. or go to your nearest emergency room. In the EU call 112. (For other international emergency numbers, go here ). Hope and help are yours!
Always the Fight Ministries (ATFM) has been displaying compassion for those fighting mental illness, addiction, or abuse since 2012. Nancy is the founder and voice of ATFM and openly shares her emotional resurrection from despair. NOTE: Nancy is not a doctor or a mental health professional, and speaks only from personal experience and observations. In no way is this website intended to substitute for professional mental or behavioral health care.
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