As the date of the piano competition draws near, episode 21 of Your Lie in April once again finds Kousei falling into solitude, this time affected by having seen the reality – that Kaori is on death’s doorstep. The question in the episode is whether Kousei will rise, or will he again fall as he did when his mother passed away.
While we have to wait until next week to see what happens with Kaori (though manga readers will already know by now), the last few minutes of the episode demonstrate to us what Kousei has decided – because of Kaori, and because of all the people who have invested their lives in him, Kousei will try. As Kaori asked him, he will struggle.
And there’s no doubt, it is a struggle. For those of us who have been through depression – and even those that haven’t, but have had moments in your life where you feel your world is collapsing, we feel what Kousei is feeling. We can recall those moments where it’s too hard to try, too hard to get up, too hard to live. Pain and hurt paralyzes us emotionally, and physically, too, as we see with the huddled position Kousei holds for much of the episode.
For Christians, the same is true – faith in God is no protection against torrents of depression and pain. In moments of struggle, we must to come the point where we decide, will be let the world overcome us, or will we struggle against the world?
Christ promises that those who follow Him have already overcome the world (1 John 5:1-5). What can that mean when we still suffer through pain, loss, trials, temptation, and despair? Perhaps it means that if we trust in God, we can find joy even in the the struggle. When everything falls apart and the storm is too strong, we understand that Christ has been there, too – he suffered more than any of us will, but remained faithful to the cross. His example and His promises tell us that our standing is always firm. His love is constant and true. And as Kousei does with Kaori, our struggles can match, in some sense, Christ’s, and as with Jesus, we can overcome them, too.
musicians God’s children, after all. That’s what we do.