One year ago today, i started this blog. And honestly it’s been quite a journey, I’ve gone from not having the confidence to share my thoughts in this way to having a somewhat large following. My goal for readership when i started this blog was 10. one year later there’s over 80 people following this blog, and i have no idea how to thank you all. You’ve made a working class young man feel like so much more. So even with my laptop issues, i knew that i’d have to do something special for this day. So I’ve decided to share my story of how the living God took a lost young man, and lifted him from the depths of depression.
I’ve been a follower of Christ for 6 years now. I went along to an alpha program at the age of 14, and honestly, for a lot of that first year i wasn’t convinced. I had so many questions, yet i didn’t have the confidence to ask them, because at this time i was unable to have conversations due to my struggle with social anxiety. So all of these lovely people who would greet me with “good morning” or with a “it’s great to see you” i couldn’t respond with more than a nod or a grunt. This wasn’t an attempt for me to be rude, or to ignore anyone, but because i honestly didn’t know how to respond with anything else. This all changed in my second year of church and my second alpha course.
During this second year, i noticed that i was able to have conversations for the first time with people i didn’t know, now these chats were not anything deep, or insightful, at least on my part, but it was a huge step forward from where i was last year. i knew that there was a change in my life and in my heart, but i still wasn’t fully convinced that God was really there, well that was until the holy spirit day.
A little bit of context for those that don’t know, a part of the alpha course in my church is to have an extra day where we dedicate a Saturday to some of the topics that we may otherwise have missed, due to time constraints, as well as inviting the Holy Spirit to come upon us, if that’s for the first time, or once again. And on that Saturday, that’s when the spirit came upon me for the first time. And i haven’t looked back since.
by next year i began the Discipleship year, (an internship at my local church) and went on to meet one of my best friends and also occasional guest blogger on this page Ian (you can find a link to his blog Here) and if i’m honest, most of the content on this page wouldn’t have been here if it wasn’t for his encouragement and teaching, along with tipping me off to WordPress as a site, so please check out his content, because it’s brilliant!
However this year wasn’t perfect, because my battle with depression had started again. See i was diagnosed with clinical depression at the age of 10, and until this point it had been an on and off battle until this point. But this is where my fight truly began.
Until this point i’d never struggled with suicidal thoughts, or self harm or anything to that measure of self loathing. I’ve never been confident, but i had never been that low. And at first i was able to shrug it off and beat it back for a while. During the end of my internship, i felt the Lord prompt me to do something in the town of Watford. I had no prior connections to this town, nor no friends or family there, but i kept hold of this word, as i had no idea what might happen. On the last week of my internship my course leader (who had no idea about this word i felt the Lord had given me) sent me a link to a Christian business looking for interns, with teaching and living expenses paid. Which just so happened to be in the town of Watford. 3 months later i moved in after being accepted and getting through the interview stage!
This time in my life was one of the greatest times of my life, i met many amazing friends that i still think highly of to this day, and even though this is my lowest and the time where the darkness of depression had its hand around my throat, i wouldn’t change it for the world. My attempts on my life were more and more constant, as was the self harm, and i ended up losing my job because of how low i was, and as much as hearing that hurt, i understand it now. And i’m grateful that they allowed me to get the help i needed.
There was one conversation i had while i was there, that was a small one, and may not have meant all that much at the time, lead to the creation of this blog. When i was sitting in our kitchen area listening to some spoken word poetry (as i was known to do) one of my housemates and closest friends during my time there, came up and asked me what i was listening to, so i lent her an earphone, and without hesitation looked at me and said “you can do that” me, still struggling with my self-worth, didn’t believe it at the time, but i did end up writing a spoken word piece that is known by the name “self vs self” (you can find a link to it Here) and that little moment, it stayed with me. And 5 months later, that little bit of belief in me and my gifts lead to this blog.
Last year was a year of recovery for me, and growth. I learnt more about my self in that short amount of time than i have in most of my life. I met one of my best friends in that time. Became a part of an outreach program that brings worship to the streets of my hometown, joined a church worship band, and began the steps on the calling that God has put on my life. And there is so much more to come.
Because if my story should show you anything, it’s that our God uses all people. He uses the weak and in turn makes them strong, he lifts the lowly and raises them higher than thought possible. And he takes the broken and shows them a life after the darkness. Because our God is good, and we can see ourselves as unworthy, but our God will use us at our worst and make us into children of the greatest Father. Because he is good. Even when we’re not. Thank you all so much for the support so far, may our community continue to grow and may the world see the light of Jesus, when all else seems dark.
Thank you for the support, thank you for the love, and thank you for reading. And my God Bless you.