Forgiveness with a twist. When a child is punished for every sin, do they want to be around that parent? Do they feel safe and loved? Probably not. If God were to punish us for every one of our sins would we fear Him and feel He did not love us? Probably. Instead He shows us immense grace and mercy. So, as a human how can mental illness complicate how God is perceived?
I am not a mental illness expert by any means. I have lived with someone with mental illness and experienced the ramifications of it. I have listened to many other stories of living with mental illness and how complicated it can be.
I heard something so profound today that it stopped me in my tracks and immediately helped me with another layer of forgiveness for the mentally ill person that was in my life. Forgiveness is the foundation of Christianity. We live more peaceful lives as we go through layer and layer of forgiveness of ones who have deeply hurt us and those we love.
This was profound to me. Many people with mental illness see the world as black and white, leaving out the gray. That makes sense to me from a human perspective. Mental illness might bring a set of unsettling thoughts and a way to make sense out of it would be to categorize them, make them black and white. When there is gray, it gets more tricky. Depending on the mentally ill person, gray might not be an option for their thinking or actions towards others.
Granted, I do not technically know what I am talking about, I am not a mental health professional. But I am a human being professional. What I do know is that without gray in our lives, we have a hard time finding grace and mercy for others. Life just is not black and white. There are very few elements of life that are black and white, most of it is gray.
Biblically speaking, there are some black and white absolutes. Then there are all the gray areas that make us beautiful and unique and flowing like a river. I love finding Jesus in so many gray areas of the Bible and in life. I can have a deeper relationship with Him as I see Him in the gray areas.
When we are black and white, we can become stagnant, unmoving.
Have you read the same Bible story more than once and received different messages from it at different times of your life? The color gray comes in many shades.
I thank the Lord daily for seeing the gray in my relationship with Him so that I am not punished for every sin.
I pray that I can flow with the gray in others, showing the love of Jesus. I have a long way to go but I am striving for such.
How black and white do you see things? How much gray is in there?
Donations accepted to serve others in their chronic illness journey. Maribeth Baxter, HHC provides voluntary certified health coaching services to the financially limited during their time of crisis.