For months, fear had taken over Lavon's* thoughts. "It will take a long time to recover," the doctor told her husband pronouncing a sentence of hopelessness about her mental condition.
Her anguish was focused especially on the future. She couldn't grasp that God's plans for her were good. The previous year pain pills for fibromyalgia had been her constant resource, even more than prayer. She had been taking far more than the recommended dosage. The Lord whispered, "Come to Me. I will set you free." She tried but could not. Her efforts were in her own strength, not in His.
Church prayer chain members took turns praying and fasting for a day. Other friends reached out to help with cards, letters, and phone calls, but she couldn't respond. Still others kept a distance not knowing what to do or say.
She had difficulty concentrating on current events, the Bible, or keeping an interest in others. "You'll have to get another piano teacher," she told her students. She had lost interest in teaching, reading, writing, meals, church, friends, and family. She went from a psychiatrist, to a clinic, to several stays in the hospital, all without success.
One day she remembered Jesus words, "Give and it shall be given to you" (Luke 6:38). She thought, "If I plant a seed of giving, God will multiply it back to me in His way." It had been a long time since she had given words of encouragement to others. She felt the Spirit of God prompt her: "Start somewhere." He would help her.
She began by calling her sister who had faithfully phoned her. Now she was taking a big U-turn and reaching out in God's strength. She called friends as each came to mind to thank and encourage them. Gradually the darkness lifted.
Thank You, Jesus, that You want us to live with joy and You know how to set us free.
"I will walk about in freedom, for I have sought out your precepts" (Psalm 119:45).