While I was at Mercy Ministries, we had praise and worship every morning for about 45 minutes. At first, I will be honest: I used this time to jump up and down and dance around and sway back and forth and, well… burn as many calories as I could. The Lord could not “maketh me lie down,” so to speak. No, I was completely controlled by fear, compulsive exercising, and anorexia nervosa.
After being there 30 days, I was told by the programme director that if I would not stop the excessive movement, I would be on probation, and basically, would not be allowed to do anything (including receive mail and phone calls). Harsh, right? But sometimes, this is what we need.
I went into praise and worship the next morning with a defiant and fearful heart. I knew those staff members would be watching me. I was angry and sad and terrified at the same time, and yet, I wanted to just play “perfect patient” (as I had in other “treatment centres”)… Except this wasn’t a treatment centre, and this wasn’t somewhere for being coddled. This is where God would reach my heart, and I would stop relying so much on people, and instead reach for my Abba Father for help.
I had heard this song (“His Glory Appears” by Hillsong) many times- I think we only had three DVDs for praise and worship (the Sacramento home I was at was literally a week old when I came in), which included Jesus Culture, Hillsong, and Brian Johnson. Yeah, we had The Katinas too, but no one except for me wanted to listen to them. Haha. <3
Anyway, this song was what brought me to my knees. It’s what made me say: “God make me Yours. Change my heart. Make me yearn for You, not for all these life-destroying issues.” I think it was the first time I stopped (even if just for these short few minutes) checking for the bones of my 85-pound body and moaning about all the physical consequences of starvation, and started kneading the carpeted floor desparately for His Strength and crying big crocodile tears for His healing.
“And the Holy Spirit helps us in our weakness. For example, we don’t know what God wants us to pray for. But the Holy Spirit prays for us with groanings that cannot be expressed in words.”
(Romans 8:26, NLT)