“No temptation has overtaken you except what is common to mankind. And God is faithful; He will not let you be tempted beyond what you can bear. But when you are tempted, He will also provide a way out so that you can endure it.” 1 Corinthians 10:13
I lost myself in ’09. I lost my sense of discernment. I lost my purpose. I became two different people, co-existing in a turbulent state. My soul became ground-zero for a spiritual warfare so extreme, it left me exhausted and worn.
It’s difficult to recall specifics from that semester and summer. Not simply due to the lapse in time since, but because of the overwhelming numbness that consumed me. I was on auto-pilot. Unable to process through so many emotions as quickly as society demanded. I was helpless. Confused. Torn.
I was balancing precariously on the foundations in which I had been raised. Half of me pleaded and yearned to stay True. That portion of myself knew what was right and what was good. That portion of myself continued to work, relentlessly, at my sport and at my studies. That portion of myself continued to force a smile and speak of the Word of God and of the King that we served. But that portion of myself was weak and often contrived.
The other half of me was vicious. Crippled by such a dark depression that, at times, I found I could understand why my dad had made the decision that he did. I found I could relate. So overwhelmed by pain, that I began seeking attention and love from all the wrong sources. I began hoarding false idols, clinging to anything that would offer me temporary pleasure and relief.
I began filling that hole with earthly things, leaving a course of destruction behind me. At times, I found myself drowning my sorrows in alcohol, throwing my inhibitions to the wind and giving pieces of myself that were not mine to give. Living a life I was not always proud of, but too desperate to care. To many, I was just living the “college life”, but I had never truly wanted to live that life. I had always wanted to be an exception. To be different.
Fortunately, I was grounded enough in my roots to maintain a promise I made years before to myself, my mom, my God, and my future husband. I was grounded enough to hold tight to my virginity. However, to even say that much is a stretch. Though I was able to keep that thread of commitment, I pushed the boundaries so close to their breaking point, that I am fortunate to still be pure. I gave pieces of myself to any boy that could satiate my desire to feel loved. Pursued empty relationships and misguided lust. Gave and gave and gave. And in return, was left even emptier than where I had started.
Up until that point, I had worked so hard to construct a perfect perception of Mo Isom to the outside world. A perception of success and a perception of esteem. A perception of a young woman that had it so “together”, that little could shake her strength. But, in my own eyes, I was such a different person. I was a little girl lost. With such a powerful spiritual warfare overwhelming my heart, I found that in my attempt to control my own life and find my own happiness, I was becoming a monster…
(to be continued)