I was asked to describe the white noise I mentioned in the first post. I’m not sure how to make sense of that to anyone that’s not in the middle of it. I’m open to trying, just don’t judge too harshly. 🙂 I suppose that fear of judgment is another post I should write soon.
The white noise, or simply noise I guess, represents for me the schedule, calendar, people, voices, fears, worries, obligations, wishes, and desires that roll around in my head all day. I hesitated to add “people” to that list because the last thing I want is for everyone to assume that they’re the reason for my depression and then avoid me. I am not going away or giving up my role. I’m just becoming aware of my limitations.
The noise, however, is best described like this: Go turn on your television as loud as you can. Next, go turn on your stereo as loud as you can, turn on your computer as loud as you can, now a blender, now the hair dryer, the bathroom fan, the oven vent, a barking dog, a screaming baby, and your car alarm. Now that you’ve got all that going on, try to relax and have a conversation with someone you care about and try to not raise your voice. It’s overwhelming.
I guess it’s not so much “white noise” that I described because this is just noise. For me personally, however, it’s an overwhelming sense of so much stuff. It gets so loud that I can’t figure out what I’m supposed to do next and instead I give up. Add to that this foreboding feeling that I’m insignificant just as I am and I’m done. I tweeted today that depression is like being surrounded by fog, clouds, and black curtains, in a room with no doors or windows. At times, it’s overwhelming hopelessness.
I know people that struggle with depression and it crushes me to see how intense their pain is. Mine is insignificant in comparison, yet it is still significant. I don’t want to be someone that attempts to wipe it away just because it’s not as bad as someone else’s struggle. It’s still a fight. With that said, I have a lot of support and tools I am able to use to help me through my struggle. My family is incredible. My friends are incredible. My God is incredible. I remind myself every day how many people love and care for me. I have to. They pull me through. Without even being in the same room, they’re helping just because I know they care. I talk to God a lot. Probably a lot more lately than in the past. I remind myself that He has placed me here at this time to accomplish big things. I have to trust that He knows what’s going on or this is a waste of time, right? Again, I think that’s one of the struggles that a lot of us have on a daily basis. Does God care? Does He KNOW?! I believe He does and I believe He weeps with us in our struggles. I don’t subscribe to this idea of the all-knowing, sitting on a cloud, disinterested in what we go through kind of God. I truly believe He cares and desires for us to lean into His understanding. I KNOW that He has called us to care for each other and demands that we do just that. “A new command I give you, you MUST love one another as I have loved YOU… by this the world will know that you are my disciples.” John 13:34-35.
He doesn’t give it as a suggestion, He DEMANDS it. I try to imagine this kind of world all the time. I ask our students and leaders to imagine how incredible our community would be if everyone SAW how we took care of each other. How awesome would it be to know that everyone I go to church with, serve with, minister next to, LOVES this way because God first loved them? I think we would do things in a dramatically different way. I don’t think it’s a good idea to ignore the model Jesus gave us when he DEMANDS that we do it His way.
It’s this idea of love that changes me, and I think that if the world around us saw that we love and care for each other the way Jesus modeled, there would be a lot less hiding going on. I started this post with the idea that I might be judged for my description of the noise. I think a lot of people that struggle with these things fear judgment and stay in hiding. How awesome would it be if our church community would rally around people to genuinely love them into health? No more hiding, just a lot of healing.
There’s a lot of fear out there. Fear of judgment is big. Fear of rejection is bigger. Both of these prevent a lot of people from entering into relationships. How incredible would it be if we knew that the people around us believed the best first? What would we do differently if we really believed that people had our backs, no questions asked? What incredible way would we live if we knew that the people in our lives were going to pursue us, to protect us, when we got scared and ran? These are the relationships I want. These are the relationships I’ll invest in. And it’s all because God first loved us and demands that we do the same.
If you believe in Jesus, then go love like He does. Our world is waiting to see what you’re going to do.
By the way, don’t be afraid to pass this on, comment, email, text, tweet. Just communicate. We need that.