For the first time after over two decades, we talk again and catch up on each other’s lives. He is quick to give me a rundown of his life, and although he has somewhat found some kind of stability and happiness in his present life, he still has many woes.
What could be the common complaints of a man of the world?
A double job to support two families: one from a previous marriage and the one in the present.
Grown-up children not doing well in school or too lazy to take up a course and pursue a career.
Dreams not being realized; happiness not complete.
The list could go on. And I never expected him to say at the end of his complaints that it sucks to be him. This short sentence bolted right out at me and made me stop and think. It stayed with me and made me ponder on a lot of things. To hear someone say in all seriousness that it sucks to be him gives one a feeling that to be in his place is the last thing one would ever want. The Free Dictionary defines the verb “suck” as a “Vulgar Slang To be disgustingly disagreeable or offensive.”
Hearing him say it made me imagine that to be him, to be in his place, to live the life he’s living, is like a place where there’s no escape. It’s like a prison. You cannot free yourself, you’re tied down, and you hate that there’s no way out.
It frightened me to think that one could put oneself in a place where one hates to be himself. It is like being locked up behind invisible bars. That is scary. One is not literally in prison but one cannot free oneself? That is pure misery!
Why would this touch me so deeply? Because I know how to live in a place where it is the last thing I wanted. When my career and work were stopped abruptly because of debilitating illness coupled with indescribable physical suffering day in and day out for many months and months turning into years – I hated to be me. I hated to live the life my prosperous life suddenly turned into.
I looked at people who passed by – a woman walking stooped down because of old age, a man in shabby boxer shorts and racerback shirt whistling while carrying a plastic of cooked rice (maybe that would be the family’s meal), and many more – and I was filled with envy for their wellness and strength. I would have willingly traded my life for them! Just not that life: a very sick, suffering body which didn’t have enough strength to walk.
Did I scream in utter hopelessness, “It sucks to be me!”? Maybe not. Maybe I used different words. But I knew that my soul wept and shouted silently to God and begged Him to liberate me from the suffering – physical, mental, emotional.
In my life, there was a way out! Can you believe that there is actually liberty – LIBERTY – from the physical, mental, and emotional anguish? Oh, friends, there is! First, He will liberate your mind, make it new – fresh! – and bring it peace. Yes, peace! Peace that passes all understanding! Then, He will heal your heart, tenderly hold it and soothe it from all its fears and tremblings. He will quieten your heart and enable it to beat for Him, for life, the life He gives! He will bring you strength, power, and wisdom to overcome, overcome all that imprisons you. He will feel you with joy, the kind which you had never known! And you will be FREE!
The Lord Jesus Christ, He is the Door. The Door to liberty. Walk to that Door and to your freedom! He is that open Door for you to be able to escape all miseries and woes!
7 Then Jesus said to them again, “Most assuredly, I say to you, I am the door of the sheep. 8 All who ever came before Me[a] are thieves and robbers, but the sheep did not hear them. 9 I am the door. If anyone enters by Me, he will be saved, and will go in and out and find pasture.10 The thief does not come except to steal, and to kill, and to destroy. I have come that they may have life, and that they may have it more abundantly. (John 10:7-10)
The Lord Jesus says, “I am the door. If anyone enters by Me, he will be saved, and will go in and out and find pasture.”
We will go in and out and find pasture. Can a prisoner do that? No! Only the freed can do that.
And then there is my favorite, the most precious pearl amongst my treasures: “The thief does not come except to steal, and to kill, and to destroy. I have come that they may have life, and that they may have it more abundantly.“
Yes, Lord. Amen, Lord. Thank You so very much for coming and for liberating me and giving me a new, abundant [rich in love, peace, joy, and righteousness!] life!
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Journey with Jesus,