* * *
Darkness does not exist. It is well known that darkness is only the result of the absence of light. Light a small candle and immediately the darkness that filled the space is gone. A little torch of light is all it takes to cast away darkness. A little smile, a little laugh, a little positive thought would change the state of darkness forever. Your world won’t be dark anymore.
But it is not as easy as it sounds. Especially for the ones who suffer from clinical depression, casting away darkness requires more than an uplifting thought pattern. They need serotonin. If only SSRIs hold the ultimate answer, things will get much easier. But it is not that simple.
There comes a moment when a sudden dark gravity takes hold of one’s entire being and the moment turns into an intolerable eternity. A sudden attack by the force of all the negative emotions beyond one’s will power and sanity will prevail and somehow the dark entity manages to burn the soul alive in its punishing heat.
But then there are also moments when a sudden spark of lightning discharges its light from above and successfully revitalizes one’s being and the moment turns into a prolonging state of grace. A sudden assurance of the wellness of the soul, and the promise of the wellbeing of one’s broken mind, body and soul rush in and life seems like a good choice once again. It is a good choice. It is always a good choice. It is the only choice. The mind is restored back to its normalcy.
It is like the gentle, soothing voice you hear on your knees after you had just received the Communion.
That Sunday I woke up with the heavy weight still thick in my head. The Holy Communion was my hope and cure. Celexa failed me. But this, I knew, won’t fail. Sure enough, as I knelt with my hands together in prayer, I heard the calming voice whispering in my heart saying:
Life I leave with you; my life I give to you. I do not give to you as the world gives.
Yes, I know. It is peace that Jesus said he is leaving with us. But I did not have time or energy to dispute the fact. Fact check was not necessary because I clearly knew what the scripture said. But those words I had just heard gave me immense energy to carry on. I broke down in tears because I felt the endless depth of loving care Jesus had for me.
Next day felt much heavier than the previous day. It was a rainy day with thick clouds. The state of my brain was manifesting itself through the wether. The meteorological synchronization. It was a day many would call a gloomy day. I usually love rainy days, but the cloudy, London-like weather could not lift up my spirit. I held on, trying to get through another day without breaking down, but I failed in the end. Such minor things disturb me when I am on the edge. Was my grip that weak? Where is my control? Where is my worth?
I dragged myself outside in need of fresh air. I was already in tears, feeling myself crashing down along with those falling tears on my cheeks. Why? Why does it feel like my life is so unbearably long? When I am only 32 years old, why do I feel like I should be five decades older? Why, why did you save me, when I am this worthless, and useless? I can’t even fight this thick cloud in my own head. Do you see how wasteful I am with the life you have given me?
After I shredded my heart with the sword of my toxic thoughts and self-criticism, and after I let my merciless sense of unworthiness get the best of me, I came back into my room to lie down on bed. I read some book reviews to distract my mind. In my reading, I ran into a quote and it brought a sudden lightning in my darkened world, forcing so much light into my heart. It broke the thick surface of discouragement, the hardness of disappointment. It said:
“Don’t try to be useful. Try to be yourself: that is enough and that makes all the difference.” (Paulo Coelho, Manuscript Found in Accra)
When you run into a quote like that after being struck down by the weapon of your uselessness, how can you not believe that Someone is desperately trying to persuade you, herding you back to the right path to lead you to life, to lead you home?
When the divinity fills my day like that, offering its ultimate light of Truth to shine the dark valley I have fallen into by the lack of serotonin as they say, I cannot help but only believe in the Divinity of Christ. These moments are enough for me to believe Him. I know about His rescue efforts to see through my journey, and that is enough for my shattered mind and heart to be strengthened once again.
The Divinity fills all living things. The Divinity especially fills human life. The Divinity of Christ is the life-giving stream that runs through all of us humans. Every human being is qualified to become the living light of Christ. Every human being is immortal.
“Every human being is in the process of becoming a noble being; noble beyond imagination. Or else, alas, a vile being beyond redemption. . . . there are no ordinary people . . . It is immortals whom we joke with, work with, marry, snub and exploit — immortal horrors or everlasting splendors.” (The Weight of Glory and Other addresses, C.S. Lewis).
And that is who I am. An immortal, everlasting splendor, a child that God has fearfully made. That is who we are.