Just Some Crumbs

By Sarah Nutter

Photo by Pixabay

When I was a junior in high school, I went through a minor case of depression. It started when I dropped out of my super-tough International Baccalaureate school. With three to six hours of homework a night, the workload was just too much for me. Teased by my friends about being a "drop-out" and labeled a failure by my own standards, I spent weeks walking around in a haze of shame.

My parents enrolled me in a special charter school because it offered easy, self-paced classes. But I say "special" because it was literally where the kids who were kicked out of regular public school went to get their act together. The environment made my depression worse.

I was barely able to talk to my family and friends and completely unsure of what my future looked like. Having lost all motivation, on several occasions I just curled up in a ball on the floor when I was supposed to be doing schoolwork. I just couldn't handle everything. I wanted out of my own skin.

I don't know if you've ever felt that sensation before, but it's absolutely terrifying. Sometimes when people go through phases like this, they turn away from God. I can sympathize because the riptide is so confusing—which way is up?

Fortunately, I opened my Bible for help. God led me to verse after verse about His love, His comfort, His perfect plan for my life, His acceptance. The peace that flooded through my body was almost tangible when I realized that He could still use someone like me for His glory—someone who couldn't make the grade in school. I don't want to paint too pretty a picture, though. Through all of this I still felt depressed. At my new school someone was usually doing drugs outside by the dumpster. And the suggestive looks I got from most of the guys didn't make me feel beautiful.

Recently, I read the story of the Canaanite woman. In the story the woman, a natural enemy of the Jews, begs Jesus to heal her demon-possessed daughter. Jesus, knowing that He'll eventually heal this young girl, and also knowing the heart of the Canaanite woman, publicly puts her beautiful, blossoming faith on display. He says it isn't right to give the children's bread to the dogs. She responds that "even the dogs feed on the crumbs which fall from their masters' table."

I know how that Canaanite woman felt. Unworthy of Jesus' attention and care, I, like a dog, hoped for just a crumb off His table. But I believed that Jesus would heal my brokenness, however undeserved. And he did—just like He healed the Canaanite woman's daughter.

Out of my painful experience, God gave me a clear sense of direction through writing. Today, I am in college pursuing a career in journalism, because Jesus gave me a renewed purpose for my life. How's that for crumbs?