I was reading Psalm 107 a few days after I returned from Festival Sanctus and that line jumped out at me. I have been slipping my story into every conversation I’ve had since, because it seems so natural that such an amazing experience should be told.
A bit of background: I’ve had depression since I was twelve. At the age of 16 I was ‘zapped’ by the Holy Spirit and discovered that my faith could be my anchor, and I steadily learnt to deal with depression through Jesus as my rock. In the past two years I have described my depression as a darkness that is always there, but just beyond me, kept away by a sort of bubble of light around me that was the presence of Jesus. I was quite content with this, as I thought that it was the best that it was ever going to get. It did mean that I could easily fall back into the darkness when times got hard, but I always got through it.
So I arrived at Festival Sanctus thinking that I knew exactly where I was in my faith, and feeling pretty happy about it too. As the week went on I began to get the feeling every time I prayed that Jesus wanted to offer me complete healing: not just to be the light fighting the darkness in my life, but to be the light that would completely defeat that darkness. However, I was terrified of letting Him have His way, because I was scared of letting go of everything that I had known for nine years. It sounds silly but I was scared of not knowing who I was when the depression was gone because I had let it define me for so long.
We came to the last day and I realised that I couldn’t let this opportunity go, so I asked three of the girls to pray with me. At first they prayed into my fear, and then I felt like my heart was going to burst with desire to be healed so they prayed healing over me. It was one of the most intense experiences of my life: it was scary, but I knew that God was holding me all the time. I felt a kind of blackness retreating up my veins from my fingertips and toes up to my heart and then gushing from me. When it was gone I felt like I was going to pass out but then I was filled by a pure, clear light and I have genuinely never felt happier in my life. I don’t think I have stopped smiling and dancing for the past ten days, and I keep discovering new parts of my life that have been transformed. I didn’t realise how much depression had affected my life until it was gone, and now the world looks glorious! Praise the Lord, He healed me!
Rosanna (22 years old)
The dates for Sion Youth's Summer Camp 2014 are 23rd-26th June. Get your school involved!