Finding Peace In A Peaceless World

Finding Peace In A Peaceless World

"I wouldn't know the truth if I hadn't searched for it in the midst of my suffering."
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Faith has always been a part of my life in one-way or another. Yet it has ebbed and flowed over the past two years more than ever. People ask me how I can believe in a God that lets such horrible things happen. How I can believe in a God that didn’t spare me from pain. And this is my answer: without my painful moments, I wouldn’t be who I am right in this moment as I type this today.

Yeah, it sounds clique. But it’s the full truth. I wouldn’t know how to love endlessly if I didn’t have people abandon me. I wouldn’t know how to speak truth into the lives of others if I didn’t seek it in my own suffering. I wouldn’t be able to love on girls who have struggled with self-harm or abuse effectively. I wouldn’t know what to say, what to do, or where to even start. If I didn’t hurt, I wouldn’t know how to love. If I didn’t struggle with suicide, I wouldn’t be grateful for life in the same way I am today. These are all struggles that I wish upon no one, but they plague many. They either make us or break us, and we have the power to choose what we do with it. Pain is a building block for growth, when we face it head on.

I consistently pray for God’s will in my life and in the lives of my friends. Sometimes His will does not feel wonderful, but it is the best thing we can be walking in. So I will take His will over how I feel. These weak moments allow me to be strong in Christ, and in return, Christ makes me stronger altogether.

So my peace is simply Jesus.

I put my hope in a God who is ever-chasing.

Who pursues me endlessly.

Who heals me when I’m broken.

Who calls me redeemed and beautiful, even though my past is ugly.

Who extends grace to make me new each morning.

Who sustains me when my heartache is unbearable,

Who gives me strength when I have none left.

A God who never leaves me,

Who fulfills me,

Who brings me peace beyond all my understanding.

This is a building block I can build all of my life off of, a block that will never be moved. Through the abuse, the breakups, the failures, the tragedies…. His promise still remains. And in this I find my worth. I find my hope for tomorrow, I find my motivation for healing.

Cover Image Credit: Jessica Sirnic

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Everything You Will Miss If You Commit Suicide

The world needs you.
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You won't see the sunrise or have your favorite breakfast in the morning.

Instead, your family will mourn the sunrise because it means another day without you.

You will never stay up late talking to your friends or have a bonfire on a summer night.

You won't laugh until you cry again, or dance around and be silly.

You won't go on another adventure. You won't drive around under the moonlight and stars.

They'll miss you. They'll cry.

You won't fight with your siblings only to make up minutes later and laugh about it.

You won't get to interrogate your sister's fiancé when the time comes.

You won't be there to wipe away your mother's tears when she finds out that you're gone.

You won't be able to hug the ones that love you while they're waiting to wake up from the nightmare that had become their reality.

You won't be at your grandparents funeral, speaking about the good things they did in their life.

Instead, they will be at yours.

You won't find your purpose in life, the love of your life, get married or raise a family.

You won't celebrate another Christmas, Easter or birthday.

You won't turn another year older.

You will never see the places you've always dreamed of seeing.

You will not allow yourself the opportunity to get help.

This will be the last sunset you see.

You'll never see the sky change from a bright blue to purples, pinks, oranges, and yellows meshing together over the landscape again.

If the light has left your eyes and all you see is the darkness, know that it can get better. Let yourself get better.

This is what you will miss if you leave the world today.

This is who will care about you when you are gone.

You can change lives. But I hope it's not at the expense of yours.

We care. People care.

Don't let today be the end.

You don't have to live forever sad. You can be happy. It's not wrong to ask for help.

Thank you for staying. Thank you for fighting.

Suicide is a real problem that no one wants to talk about. I'm sure you're no different. But we need to talk about it. There is no difference between being suicidal and committing suicide. If someone tells you they want to kill themselves, do not think they won't do it. Do not just tell them, “Oh you'll be fine." Because when they aren't, you will wonder what you could have done to help. Sit with them however long you need to and tell them it will get better. Talk to them about their problems and tell them there is help. Be the help. Get them assistance. Remind them of all the things they will miss in life.

If you or someone you know is experiencing suicidal thoughts, call the National Suicide Prevention Hotline — 1-800-273-8255

Cover Image Credit: Brittani Norman

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Part 1: Necessary Changes

One of my favorite movies is "Fried Green Tomatoes" with Kathy Bates. In the movie Bates' character Evelyn Couch says, "Someone helped put a mirror up in front of my face, and I didn't like what I saw one bit. And you know what I did? I changed." I know the feeling.

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I looked in the mirror over the weekend and didn't like what I saw.

The person I saw looking back at me is petty, selfish, manipulative, and unattractive. It wasn't that I hated what I saw, but I definitely didn't like what I saw either. It's a surreal feeling, looking at yourself through a critical lens, and it doesn't make you feel good in any way shape or form.

The image that I see of myself is not how I want others to perceive me. I want to be someone that people look at and see kindness, compassion, strength, and confidence.

I have enough general life experience to know that these types of changes aren't going to happen overnight, and not all of them will be physical; most of these will have to happen from the inside, from within myself.

When you find out you are all broken and damaged, it's hard to know where to start putting the pieces back together. I figured the best place to start would be the most literal: my actual insides; so, I decided to embark on a deep-cleansing journey to get all of the toxins out of my body, from the inside out.

I found this book on 10-day green smoothie detox stashed away in the dark corner of my bookshelf. The science behind it seems accurate and legitimate. By eliminating certain foods, your body is able to detox itself off of chemicals and foods that are slowing down your metabolism; the smoothies are specifically designed with combinations of foods that help restart your metabolism. Part of the detox process is getting rid of all dependencies on caffeine, alcohol, and sugar.

Every day you are given the recipe for a specific smoothie; you make the smoothie (about 40 ounces) and sip on it throughout the day whenever you get hungry. Every smoothie is a combination of leafy greens, water, fruit, and flax seeds. If you do happen to get hungry throughout the day, you are encouraged to eat raw nuts, hard boiled eggs, and a wide variety of crunchy green vegetables. There is also a detox tea that you have first thing in the morning, but other than that no other beverages are allowed except water.

I know that this is only the beginning of a very long, emotional, and draining journey. But I think I'm at the point in my life where I have to make these changes. I have to put my pieces together, I have to become a normal functioning adult, I have to find out who I am. I think that this is the perfect way to start.

For the next 10 days I am going to be documenting my experiences, how I'm feeling, what my emotions are doing, and any results that I see.

Stay tuned!

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