I know that I am praying for physical healing, but can you ever be well in your body without being well in your soul? All the riot and the looting that have happened in London during the last few days has had a profound impact on how I perceive myself and where I am in the journey with the Lord. The rioting has personally affected me in that it has prevented me from living normally during the last few days, outside of the constant sound of police car and ambulance wailing, helicopters flying overhead and the shout of youths in the street many of the things that we take for granted such as buying our grocery has been very difficult. On Monday, I went out around 6 PM to do some grocery shopping, I got on the overground to take me to the shopping centre. On arriving at the shopping centre I was met by people telling me that the super market had been closed due to a riot in the nearby district of Lewisham, I got back on the train as I thought I would have better luck at Whitechapel. On reaching Whitechapel, I was met by a notice on the door of the local supermarket saying that the store had been closed due to the rioting.
I met a girl who had told me that she had just walked through the riot in Bethnal Green to get here, listening to her story we rejoined the stream of potential grocery shoppers looking for somewhere to buy something to eat. We headed towards a Tesco express in the nearby area, approaching the store we found the doors to be open and sighed in relief only to find that they were only letting people out! At this point in time I was so thirsty as I had been travelling from South to East London hauling my bright neon trolley around, and so I gave up on looking for food and attempted to find a shop to purchase some water instead. I came across a shop not far from the Tesco express; as my foot went over the threshold of the shop the shopkeeper looked out and saw a gang of youths wearing hoodies and bandanas to cover their face. They lined across the pavement and headed towards us, the shopkeeper practically pushed me out of the shop in order to close the shutters before the gang reached his store. Even though I finally managed to get my bottle of water, being on the street on Monday and Tuesday had an air of franticness about it; it felt like people were preparing for Armageddon.
So what does this have to do with what I said at the beginning of this post? Well, as I said last few days have had a great impact on me emotionally and mentally. I never realised how stressful it was to be in an environment that was out of control, my own experiences coupled with the newspaper images and reports showed me what could happen when the devil made home in the heart and mind of groups of people. Many people, innocent people lost their homes and/or their businesses because of the greed and self centred attitude of a minority group. It may sound melodramatic but I felt as if civilisation as I knew it was on the brink of collapsing, and I felt so helpless the only thing I could do was pray to God to have mercy on this land and deliver His children. I became so upset about everything happening around me that I turned back to my former mode of handling any hurts, I started to block out the reality of the situation by watching TV shows and movies back-to-back. And you may think that this is not such a bad vice, but there are two things which make this a problem for me:
- I become easily addicted/enthralled with TV, movies and books (actually any fiction at all) because they provide an opportunity for me to escape life, but inevitably after watching/reading I end up feeling worse off than when I started. This may be due to the fact that I have suffered from depression for long periods of my life, or from my family upbringing or maybe both, I don’t know.
- Television and literature (particularly the former) provide an opportunity to plant seeds of the enemy in our mind, after watching or reading these things I would often begin to think and speak differently, and be more susceptible to having negative and dark dreams.
Even now today, I am struggling with combating the pull that I feel to absorb myself in some fantasy world or another but I felt that to write this would be akin to standing up and admitting that all is not well with me as I am. By doing this I believe that I lessen the influence that the enemy may try to exert on me whilst helping me to move forward step-by-step. When I am in this place, I don’t feel like doing much, I become cagey and fatigued, I feel like I am hiding a sin and this festers inside of me (not a good condition to promote physical healing).
There are many people who feel drawn back to vices after stressful or traumatic events, and although mine may not be seen as terrible in the eyes of some I am aware of how much more work the LORD needs to do on my soul, to heal the wounds that make me feel that I have to find solace in an imaginary world and that this work is more important than my physical healing. What would happen if I was in Afghanistan for example, would I be able to cope with the emotional and mental strain of that situation? And what happened if God led me into a place of persecution, what would I do then? Thinking about these things makes me feel (and causes me to pray) that God will indeed make me strong enough and well in my soul in order to conquer the grip of fear, depression or whatever it is so that I can be ready for whatever the future holds big or small. Does this mean that I don’t want physical healing? No, but I don’t believe you can actually be well in your body until you are well in your soul, your soul (heart and mind) is who we are and as such dictates our physical reality. So brothers and sisters, pray for me, pray for yourself and pray for anyone else that you know so that we can be well in our soul in order to have the healing we so much desire.
In Yeshua (Jesus’) name I pray.