6 Reminders of Who We Are in Christ!
by Kaitlyn Clare Elizabeth Mason
We all forget who we are in Christ at times, don’t we? When we forget, the song “Remind Me Who I Am” by Jason Gray can be uplifting. It’s a beautiful song, and you can listen to it here. My favorite part of the song is this piece: “In the loneliest places, when I can’t remember what grace is… Tell me once again who I am to you, who I am to you. Tell me lest I forget, who I am to you. I belong to you.”
When struggling with mental illness, sometimes it can be easy to forget who we are in Christ. I’ve dealt with mental illness. It’s touched many members of my family, many of my friends, and it has affected me in various ways in different seasons of my life. I’ve come across several individuals who have hurt themselves physically and some who have been on the verge of suicide.
I know what this does to families. I know what this does to individuals. And I know where it can lead if the person continues down that path.
It’s important to remember that when we are at the lowest of lows and feel there is no way out, that God has brought us to that moment for a reason. He is allowing us to suffer for a reason – for some higher purpose that we may not be able to comprehend on this side of Heaven. We have to trust Him. The only power we really have is that of surrender. We have to surrender to God’s will.
I’ve been to the depths of despair and back again. But looking back, I can see how Christ used every moment of my suffering to mold me into a more empathetic and charitable individual.
I would not be the person I know and love today if it weren’t for those times that I’ve suffered.
How difficult it can be for those who do not trust God or who are not walking with Him to get through these times of darkness.
My Catholic Faith has been such a comfort in my life, especially in dark times. I’ve found peace in the power of the rosary, in the Litany of Humility, in Adoration of the Blessed Sacrament, in receiving the Eucharist at Mass, in learning about the beautiful lives of the Saints, in learning about the Saints’ joy in the midst of suffering, and in turning to Christ and His Blessed Mother in moments of trial and temptation. I now know what St. Gemma Galgani meant when she said, “Dear Blessed Mother, lend me your heart. I look for it each day to pour my troubles into.”
Do you love someone who suffers from mental illness? Do you suffer from mental illness yourself?
It’s time to remind these people – or maybe for you to remind yourself – of who we are in Christ! Here are 6 little reminders:
- We are made in the image and likeness of God! (Genesis 1:27)
- We are dependent upon God and He gives us rest. “My soul rests in God alone, from whom comes my salvation” (Psalm 62:2).
- We are His children & we are His heirs “if we suffer with him so that we may also be glorified with him” (Romans 8:16-17).
- We are loved. “For God so loved the world that he gave his only Son, so that everyone who believes in him might not perish but might have eternal life” (John 3:16).
- We are cared for and God has a plan for our lives! “For I know well the plans I have in mind for you… plans for your welfare and not for woe, so as to give you a future of hope” (Jeremiah 29:11).
- We are His hands and feet on this earth. We are called to be active in Faith and charity! “Christ has no body now but yours. No hands, no feet on earth but yours. Yours are the eyes through which he looks compassion on this world. Yours are the feet with which he walks to do good. Yours are the hands through which he blesses all the world.” – St. Teresa of Avila
I’ve learned that I need to pray when I feel strong negative emotions, to allow myself to feel these emotions, and then to let them wash over me and pass by. I don’t need to dwell on them. When I ride out my emotions in this way and don’t let them affect me, the emotions that I feel no longer can reach my core. My heart is protected by Christ.
Ephesians 6:10-16 speaks of this protection:
“Finally, draw your strength from the Lord and from his mighty power. Put on the armor of God so that you may be able to stand firm against the tactics of the devil. For our struggle is not with flesh and blood but with the principalities, with the powers, with the world rulers of this present darkness, with the evil spirits in the heavens. Therefore, put on the armor of God, that you may be able to resist on the evil day, and having done everything, to hold your ground. So stand fast with your loins girded in truth, clothed with righteousness as a breastplate, and your feet shod in readiness for the gospel of peace. In all circumstances, hold faith as a shield, to quench all the flaming arrows of the evil one.”
Focusing on our limitations can be a distraction in our lives. Allowing mental illness to steal our joy can be a temptation in our lives. Or worse, we can conclude that living our lives with stolen joy is our only option.
But one day without joy is one too many. One person lost to suicide is one too many.
When we put on the armor of Christ and remember who we are, we can always be joyful!
Who do you know that could use a reminder of who they are in Christ today? How do you stay close to Christ in times of suffering?
Copyright 2016 Kaitlyn Mason, Last revised 2/6/16