Monday, August 27, 2012

Here We Go Again?

Okay, it's time to say it: I'm not feeling well.

No, this is not the usual "ups and downs" I've been going through during this remission (which has lasted two years). No, it's not the flu either.

I know this disease. We're old friends. But, is this just a little bump? Or a flare-up? Or a relapse? I don't know. And, yes, I am worried. What can I do? Not much of anything, beyond what I already do.

I know there are always new ideas out there, and for some people they can help. But I've been to the whole circus. More than once. I've been on all the rides. And we've spent all of our money! Nothing has helped. My own little regimen, developed from experience, has worked better than anything (and its cheap too!)--so I'm gonna just ride this out.

First of all, I have to bring all of it, including my hopes, frustrations, fears, and even the anger and bitterness to Jesus, and give it to Him, and say "Jesus I trust in You. Have mercy on me!" I have to abandon myself to wherever He wants to lead me. Sometimes (really, most of the time) I have to pray, "Lord, give me the grace to want what you will for me."

Sometimes I don't want to pray. I don't feel like it. What I feel is something like, "Why did You create a universe, and then let the human race fall, and then throw me into this life with a brain and a body that don't work, and then just allow me to fail, fail, fail? What kind of a deal is this?"

I know, of course, that it's all about the mystery of the redemption, and the love of Jesus for the Father from the Cross which is greater than every sin, and is the deep truth about my own being and my suffering. There is a mystery here. It's transforming my life. But I am not always going to feel warm and fuzzy about it!

This is not a reason to get discouraged. Never give up! I must take this "feeling," this whole drag on my consciousness, and offer it to God. Somehow. Even if it's nothing more than the struggle to refuse to let discouragement take hold of my will. There is a mysterious kind of choice we can make in the midst of the most crushing desperation, which (I'm trying to describe it, but no terms are adequate) is to allow our being to keep praying. It's the choice not to snuff out that radical hope. Sometimes people (especially people with mental problems, which can make it impossible to think properly about anything) need to grab that place and just hold on.

Meanwhile, I can still write about these things, right here, for you. At a certain point, I wrote a book about all this (see the link on this blog). It's been going on for a long time, and it has drastically changed the life of my family, although I believe we have grown from it. But it's not easy. I'm sure your life is not easy either.

I think it builds solidarity when we share our sufferings with one another. One of the hardest things is that all suffering bears the taste of loneliness, of being misunderstood, abandoned, unloved. Jesus knows that "place" and He is with us there. He calls us to be there for one another.


Anonymous said...

Dear John,

We meet today because of your passage "The True Identity the Pharisees Refused" and "Never Give Up" as a Meditation of the Day, The Magnificat, today August 27, 2012. I have gained something from your comment - "Never Give Up". You were on my mind after reading that passage and I found your blog post.

May I share something with you too? This is the HOLY SPIRIT at work in our lives.

Accepting the gift of Holy Spirit set's our prayers in action with mutual love. I love you prayer. "Jesus, I LOVE you. Jesus, I TRUST in you. COME, HOLY SPIRIT."

I would like to add to your wonderful prayer - "And Holy Spirit, Kindle inside me the Fire of God and the Almighty Father's LOVE, heal me to perfect health - AMEN, in the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Spirit".

Let's invoke the healing Power of the Holy Spirit by the sign of the cross...not once per day, not twice, but anytime we find it necessary.

Let's spread the Good News that the Trinity unites us all together as one family in faith, hope, and love:

The Father, God (is Love), Jesus Christ (is the Beloved Son of the Father), and The Holy Spirit (is Mutual LOVE).

The Holy Spirit is NECESSARY to bring MUTUAL LOVE together on Earth as it is in Heaven - The Father's Love and the Beloved Son, joined forever and ever.

Loved your comments about praying the Rosary and the Love of our Mother Mary. Our Mother Mary, received the Holy Spirit and delivered us our Lord Jesus.

We are blessed. You are blessed. Thank you for sharing. You are in my prayers and I will pray for you. Please pray for me too.

With our Lord Jesus' Love and the Holy Spirit - Samuel Jacob Simonson

Allison said...

John: Your ability to share your struggles is a true gift. I know I have my moments, days even, of doubt, fatigue, worry, inertia. We are all in this together, brother!

Leanne@lifehappenswhen said...


Thank you for being courageous enough to share your struggles and suffering with others. You are absolutely right! We must share with each other and support each other.

I am sending many prayers for you and your family. Prayers for peace, acceptance, understanding, and healing.

Bridget Robinson said...

My dear John,
You cannot imagine how much you have helped me bear the journey of my life of chronic pain...I am in constant awe of how the Holy Spirit works the mystery of God's Mercy and Life in me and those around me in similar ways confirming His constant Presence in both our lives.

YOU are one of them..together we can trust He is using everything for good..

My prayers are with you John,my brother, in the "marvelous mixture" of joy and pain,

Bridget Robinson

John Janaro said...

Thanks everyone for the prayers and encouragement. I'm hanging in there. God bless you all.