Ash and I were sitting on a park bench on one of the "tough days" during that three month stint where I secluded myself from the outside world and the conversation with Ash went something like this:
Me: (With tears welling up) I HATE having to be held together by this small group of people! I hate it! It's humiliating...
Ash: (With a gracious smile) Excuse me "Pastor" Zach?? All of that stuff you preach to everyone else about needing each other? Depending on each other? Are you not willing to do that yourself? Are you not going to now practice what you preach?
Two things I said I would NEVER do was
1. Go to a psychologist
2. Take medicine
And I did both for an entire year.
When you're actually in a pit and you can't see daylight, you'd be surprised what you'll do to get out of it. Today, I'm so thankful for doctors who specialize in the human brain. I'm thankful for a doctor who prescribed me a healthy, low dose pill to help me get through that season of life. No matter what you're thoughts are towards counseling and medicine, "for me," the Lord used a Christian psychologist and medicine to heal me. Jesus healed me in a surprising way, but it was Jesus who healed me. He heals me today. And he will continue to heal me. He even uses me now to walk with others that are walking along the same healing journey I walked on years ago. It's crazy-the person I said I would never go see, a Professional Counselor, I'm now becoming myself.
(Side note: I know it's a touchy subject for some people. I do think, in America, we like to throw pills at people and expect them to get better, but they will never get better with just that approach alone. I know a lot of people who abuse the gift, and I do mean gift, of medicine. I don't think medicine is the devil, but I do believe it can bring destruction to someone's life if not handled properly. But also so can just about everything else in life.)
There's obviously a lot more to my story and a lot more to what the Lord taught me and continues to teach me. I don't know how long this Hopetown blog will last, but I knew I wanted to start out my writing with that part of my story, with my "breakdown" in Florida. So if you choose to journey along with Ash and I on this Hopetown blog, please know we will never claim to be the smartest human beings in the world. WE don't have our PHD in psychology (yet). You will most likely have to correct us at some point for taking some scripture out of context. We may even change our mind from time to time on certain issues. We don't have it all figured out. But what we do have is an understanding of deep brokenness through our own life experiences. Even though I'm almost half way through the process of obtaining my license in order to become a Professional Counselor myself, I still believe our credibility is not a piece of paper. I believe our credibility is the hard knocks of life. I know everyone will not get hope from this blog, but maybe God can use it to bless a few.