My mom recently told me a story about a friend who is going through some serious difficulties in life.
This friend shared how she would put all her troubles in a box and hand them to Jesus.
I like that idea. Of mentally handing your problems over to the only one who can actually do something about them.
Hearing the story reminded me of a time in my life when things were horrifying.
There was a time in my life when I lived in constant fear.
Fear of abuse. Fear of possible death.
Fear of the words he would say. Fear of his actions.
Constant, unending, fear.
The nights were the worst.
Through the night he would wake up and if I was asleep, he would wake me up.
One of his ideas was that I was not allowed to sleep unless he was asleep.
He would force me to go downstairs. He would stand above me for a half hour or so and scream at me. Calling me every name in the book. Threatening me vicious threats. His face would be in my face. His fist inches from my face. After a time he would let me go back to sleep for a few hours, only to wake me up again and start over. Thankfully my children are deep sleepers. They didn't have to live in as much fear.
Most often the worst was through the night, but was starting to happen during the day. After the drugs would work their way through his system, he would never remember his actions. And if he couldn't remember his actions, in his mind they never happened.
I learned to hide in different places to sleep. Out of sight, out of mind, worked best. A mattress downstairs, in the corner of the living room worked for a time. Eventually, I would hide in the children's rooms in a dark corner.
My ability to 'go away' in my imagination saved me.
When he would be screaming and threatening, I would mentally go away.
I would invision Jesus sitting on a large rock.
And He would say to me "Come". Like I imagine He did to the little children.
In my mind He had a very large lap. I would crawl up onto it. In my mind I was a little girl again.
I would lay my head on His chest and smile softly.
He would pat my back and gently rub my head. His arms would be wrapped around me so tightly. As to protect me from any harm. Nothing could get to me.
I often would wonder why he never hit me. Why his fist never came closer than a few inches from my face. Now, I wonder if there was a barrier. An invisible barrier where he couldn't get through. A barrier set there by Jesus.
In my mind I was curled up in Jesus' big, soft, and protective lap. I was oblivious to the words and actions around me.
I wonder if that ultimately saved me. Not only the immediate protection from the immediate danger, but the long term protection. I still have a few emotional scars.
But they are faint in consideration of how deep they should run.
Are you struggling? Are there times in your life you need to just run away? Is there pain in your life that is unbearable?
Simply close your eyes. And crawl up into Jesus' lap. It's big. It's safe. And it's the only place to find true peace and rest.