Saturday, May 14, 2011

the loneliest time.

Get ready. 
This blog is the longest I've ever written.
I'm sitting here with a blank page in front of me. I've wanted to blog for sometime now, but I just haven't been able to bring myself to do it. Do what exactly? Not write, that's easy and enjoyable, but I haven't been able to bring myself to open up. 
I've decided. 
Today is the day.

As I sit here thinking about how fast the year has gone, my heart can't tell if I'm supposed to be happy and smile, or be broken and cry. 
No, not because I'm emotional. 
Not because bad things have happened or good things have happened. I'm sure they have.
Let's dig deeper. 
What's really been going on?

I've had so many ups and downs in my walk with Christ, I struggle to grab hold of my thoughts and emotions. 
This year (though not over, and I'm not really sure when this 'year' started) was all about finding out who I really am. Who, my friends, has God created Katie Ellis to be?
What's her purpose?
What's her desire?
What does she strive for?
Who does she seek out?
What is she passionate about?
Who are her closest friends?

People, you'd think after years in "the ministry" I would have this all figured out. 
Let me be honest, even those in "the ministry" don't even have it figured out.
You think you're the only one that doesn't know?
Think again.

For the past year I have walked through a desert of emptiness that absolutely no one could see, and that only I was absolutely tortured by.

I felt like this:
Imagine, for a second, a child.
Daddy's little girl who had drawn a beautiful picture for her Daddy. She worked so hard on it making sure to color inside the lines, use a plethora of colors, and striving to stay in a perfect color scheme that would make the picture absolutely flawless. 
When the little girl goes to her daddy whom she has worked so hard on this picture for, she says, "daddy! look!"... but there's no response. 
She tries again, "daddy! ... daddy look at my picture!"
The father doesn't even flinch, doesn't move, doesn't acknowledge.
She tries again and again. Tugging at his pant leg, tapping him on the hand, yelling his name, "daddy!.. daddy! PLEASE daddy PLEASE look at my picture I drew for you!"
Finally, she thinks to herself, maybe he doesn't want my picture?
She finally lays down the picture, she surrenders it, she'll do anything for her daddy's attention.
Anything for one look, one movement, one acknowledgment of her existence. 
She tries and tries, but nothing is working.
She's broken. She's crying which turns to weeping.
Still, her daddy doesn't say or do anything, which shatters her precious and fragile heart into a million pieces.

Friends, this is how I have felt for the past year. 
To be honest, I have never been so broken hearted by the lack of attention that I got from God.
I had tried everything.
He wasn't speaking to, intervening in, moving on, or even acknowledging my heart's desire to know Him. 

I had never felt more alone in my entire life.

I finally built up the courage to talk to a good friend and mentor of mine, Angie Filip.
We sat in Starbucks and she listened as I talked and cried to her.
I was lost and broken.
We prayed, but of course, like every other time, nothing moved or touched the broken heart inside of me. 

Easter Sunday was coming up and there was a prayer night at the Molt's house. 
We were going to be praying for salvations, for God to move, and for God to prepare a way for people to come and be changed.
As the night when on, I prayed for all of those things. I even sang the worship songs that were being sung by the twenty something of us that were packed into that little living room.
Finally, Angie stood up and began to speak about something or another and all I can remember was that tears were streaming down my face. 
No, not because God was speaking.
Not because God was doing something radical.
Not because I felt God's presence.
No, my friends, let me be honest with you, I was crying because my heart was broken. 
Tears flooded my eyes because I knew that when I was going to pray for God to come touch my life in the way Angie was talking about- I would only be disappointed and broken hearted all over again.
It hurt so much that I wept at the very thought of it.
I was wounded spiritually and emotionally, and didn't want the wounds to be reopened for more pain.
 Before I knew it, I was surrounded by people.
These people were probably shocked that I was responding to it.
Katie Ellis? She's so strong though! Katie Ellis? She can't possibly be going through this, she's a leader in the church, she is full of joy and happiness, she prays prayers that change people's lives, SURELY Katie Ellis couldn't be going through this...

They began to pray over me, and I just remember shaking my head and crying. 
Here are these amazing men and women of God praying and speaking things out in my life and my heart remained broken, my sprit remained untouched. 

Finally, Angie told me- Katie, you need to begin to pray out loud.
Instead of being obedient, I shook my head crying.
I refused. 
I was hurt.
I couldn't pray what I was thinking in front of all of these people, but she persisted. 
I took in a deep breath and I kid you not, I prayed this prayer:
"God. I'm ready for you to reveal Yourself to me.
God, right now, I can't STAND you. 
You've abandoned me. You've deserted me. And You've left me.
I trusted you with my heart and you've broken it.
I'm so lost.
I'm so confused by You. 
You say that you want me, but you don't even care. God I want nothing to do with You. You are NOT who You said You were. I don't want to hear about you any longer, I'm DONE. God You've broken a heart that cannot be mended."

Yep. You read it right. 
In front of my pastors, all of the leaders, and all of my friends I prayed a prayer of hatred towards God.
And still, after venting and "getting it off my chest" ... I felt nothing. I felt broken. I felt empty.

A girl named Sarah had asked for healing earlier. 
Angie felt like God had told her that I was to pray for her.
I looked at her like she was crazy, still catching my breath from absolute sobbing. 
I told Sarah I was sorry but I just couldn't.
Angie persisted and told me to pray over Sarah with the exact heart that I had just prayed with.
Oh boy.
I literally sat there for what seemed like an eternity.
All of these people encouraging me and praying around me. 
I opened my mouth and began to speak. 
Somewhere, from the reservoir of my heart, the Holy Spirit took over my words. 
I don't remember what happened after that, all I remember is that I was proclaiming who God was and the individual truths about me and Sarah that God had spoken over us. 
"God you are our Healer, You are our Hope, You are our Peace, You are our Rest"
I don't remember anything else in that prayer except for that when it was done, I had to catch my breath. People were overflowing with joy, and the room wreaked of the presence of God. 
It was so surreal. 

I can't explain in words to you what happened that night in Matt and Lisa's living room, all I know is that my God never leaves me or forsakes me.
When you can't see him or feel him, oh he's there. 
If you are going through the most depressing, loneliest time in your life, and you think you can't go on, I'm here to tell you to keep going. 
Even if it takes days, months, or years- your prayers are not falling on deaf ears. 
He hears every cry. He catches every tear. 
In all of this, my faith was tested, my foundations were shaken, but my God remained unchanging and abounding in love. 
Keep Going.
Keep Persisting.
There is hope.