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Ladies, I have decided to share an email with you that came through this week from a lovely lady, Tracey, who is struggling so much and needs us King's Daughters to support her. Her name has been changed to protect her identity and I share this with her permission. Please pray with me for her freedom and if you have anything to share please leave a comment for her in the box below. I have found over the years that the most difficult struggles are the ones we carry alone but it is in this isolation that the devil has his victory. Let's all come out with what we are going through and support each other so that we can be free indeed as we are promised in John 8:36. Here is the email:
"Let me introduce myself. My name is Tracey. I am 23 years old. I'm a Christian. I am going through a tough time as of late and your message on the King's Daughters YouTube about loving yourself really hit home because I don't love myself. I am fat and I feel useless! I just don't feel beautiful. I wanted to ask you something as I would like a Christian perspective on some issues/ questions I have. For a while now I have suffered from and anxiety disorder called OCD. It has had a massive impact on my life! It has stopped me living and enjoying things. I am literally afraid of everything. Because of this I second guess everything I do. My obsessive fear is that I will get sick, more so the act of physically being sick (it is extremely hard for me to even say the word vomit). I also fear that I may cause someone else especially my family to get sick or to be harmed. I also have a massive fear that I may die if I do simple things like drive (which I haven't been doing because of this fear) or go somewhere by myself. For example when I was in my early teens, a motorcyclist had died near our area and it was a Sunday and I had read my bible; in the end I had this absurd thought that they were all linked and that reading my bible on a Sunday would cause someone harm, so for a really really long time I didn't read my bible on a Sunday which lead to me reading it very rarely because it caused me so much fear and anxiety. I don't have that ritual now as they come and go and form into other things. But I have to many to mention that I feel I have to complete in order for the anxiety to go away and to make sure that what I fear never happens. The thing with OCD is that I feel really embarrassed about my thoughts as I know logically these things don't cause me to be sick or do harm yet I feel I need to do them regardless.
I have been seeing a psychologist (not a Christian one) for this for almost a year and have gotten some great tips that have helped me some what but I feel that I still cannot get over it. I have been exposing myself to some stuff I fear but just can't do all of it. I know that the only way is with God's help! But the problem is every time I pray I feel like I do it wrong or don't say the right things. Why does God/ Jesus feel so far away yet he is close to us? How do I heal of this OCD? I am no longer seeing my psychologist because we just moved from city to country town. I am for this move but this week I have been feeling really down and feeling anxious again. This anxiety can get really intense.
The OCD subsided for a bit during my years at Uni although still there. I studied social work but feel as though I don't deserve to work in it because of the OCD. My thoughts are things like "what right do I have to help others?" So it's put me off finding work in that area.
I love children so I thought maybe I should do childcare instead so I went to do a course in it this time last year but only lasted a week as my OCD came back with vengeance. I was having anxiety attacks, couldn't eat was always shivering with fear couldn't go out or anything. I'm still not free. I feel like people, if they know will look at me as a freak. I don't have a Christian role model that I can ask these things too, my parents are Christians but it's just hard for me to talk to them about this. For years I have asked God to take it away but nothing happens. Why? I then questioned why do I have it then? I am thankful though that it is just OCD and not a serious illness. I always have times that I question my salvation. I remember giving my life to Jesus when little and consistently throughout the years but because I can't remember a specific date I don't feel as though it's legit.
How do I get over feeling inadequate? I don't have a job, haven't had a proper job (only babysitting and relief work) in my life because of my OCD, I feel like an absolute failure. I don't want people to think in lazy cause I'm not, just fearful.
I admire my parents so much they seem to both have a really great understanding of the bible and a great relationship with Jesus and I just feel like I don't even though I try. Why is this? I just feel like I never will. I even feel less than others because I have never had a boyfriend. Lots of people comment on it and they are all getting married and having children which I so much want some time in life. Not even one person has taken interest in me. Not that I feel worthy of being loved the way I am anyway.
My childhood was a bit of a rocky one. My dad was an alcoholic but he is free from that now thanks to Jesus! I witnessed a lot of violence from him towards my mum. They did divorce but are now remarried as he realised what he had lost and he gave it all to Jesus. I guess anxiety has always been a part of my life and some OCD traits could have stemmed from parts of it. Cleaning and organising was a coping mechanism I used when I felt out of control when dad was drunk or angry. I feel guilty for feeling scared about the past because my dad is no longer that man. I guess I also see that my dad was set free from his alcoholism and yet I am still stuck with my OCD.
I have at times washed my hand from 80 to 100+ times a day. It is draining feeling that I need to wash then after touching everything. I can wash them until they are red raw and bleeding but somehow this self destructive behaviour is comforting or reassuring. I feel that I am a useless Christian because of the OCD and my feelings. I feel so stuck.
Some other questions I have are; How do I pray properly? Dear Jesus? Dear father? Dear god? I've hear people say it shouldn't be dear Jesus it should be; Father I come to you in the name of Jesus. Is this true?
How do I know Gods' will for my life? How do I hear God? Or know what he is saying to me? Why do I feel lonely? Why do I have this deep hurt that I can't explain or even cry about?
I just feel stuck in life! I would appreciate any advise that you have. Sorry about the length, it's something I've been bottling up way too long."