There is something funny about silence. You don't just listen, you hear more.
In a room you hear the rhythmic ticking of a clock passing time.....electronics running through cycles of reving up and cooling down....the sigh of a dog as it fully relaxes into sleep....the gurgling of my stomach. Not necessarily the beautiful song of birds but hey...it's winter here in the tundra and we've been stuck in sub-zero temps for several days.
In conversations you start to hear tones differently. The emotions behind them come through more clearly. Often....maybe more often than people like....I notice that people are not aware that their tone speaks an entirely different language than their words. A pleasant exchange about coffee or some trivial thing, for instance can reveal a tone that is speaking about being exhausted, frustrated and needing a break. But in the context of the words....just sounds angry.
Then, there is phrasing. The one that currently jumps out at me with flashing lights and fireworks "I am". People have locked themselves into being stuck. "I am not a good listener." "I am not good at asking questions." "I am not organized." "I am not a runner." "I am afraid..." "I am a jerk, prideful, arrogant, weak, easily manipulated, a failure, a doormat, hard to love, selfish, shy, insecure, damaged...." In there, the message is "I can't and I won't try to change." Perhaps it's more of a being scared to try to change, or being too lazy to put the effort forth or maybe just maybe.....it's a lie that got in there somehow, someway and it was believed. Claimed as their own and there it sits in the illusion of truth.
The real truth is that the only thing you can't change is the past. So when I catch myself saying things like "I am not good at asking questions." I change my phrasing..."I haven't been good at asking questions, I'd like to change that." I am what I choose to be. I choose to grow and change and improve. I choose to listen to my own language and when I catch myself claiming something as if it cannot be changed...I change that "I am" to reflect "In the past I haven't been known to be ________." Because it's in the past. It doesn't have to be who I am right now or in the future.
Every second is a new opportunity to choose differently.
Blessings for broken locks, wise choices and freedom to move forward into a new perspective.
Friday, January 25, 2013
Tuesday, January 8, 2013
Well hello! It's me! Yer friendly, random blogger. Yep I've been absent. Things have gotten dusty and stale. Well, lets crack a window and let some fresh air in. Its a new year and what lays before us is nothing but opportunity.
I've never been one for "New Years Resolutions". It's always felt synonymous with "things I'll never follow through on" so I've never given it much thought beyond that. I don't intend to make any but the sentiment of reflecting on the past and preparing for the future by setting some goals resonates differently in the here and now.
We are in a long term season of transition here. Be buoyant....are words that resonate deep within me.
The last month has been filled up with weighty things. Big tests, changes in how we celebrate, family additions and heavy emotions to process. None of this necessarily negative....just big and all at once. For a while it felt like the pile just kept growing and the Lord just kept giving and there was this sense of being totally overwhelmed.
Mostly I just let it come. Riding the waves as they came, not really grasping the details but trying to be present. I've had moments of being so overwhelmed by praise so gracious, I turned to a humble pile of tears. My heart has given birth to a new child, stretched and challenged at how to love this woman...woman...how strange that feels to say.....when what I see and love is a little peanut of a girl who I want to hold and mend and guide and yet, I also want to learn so much from....how to love this woman right. How be her Jesus momma with skin on and love her the way He desires her to be loved.
Then there was the scripture.....the verses that He would bring strongly to mind and affirm them through others, media and any source He could to bring them to my face. I took notes Lord....You saw. There were topics and convictions and passions that were planted in mind and heart. He showed with a clear awareness that I poured too much out. My balance has been off for too long and I lost my ability to draw from the well with efficiency....leaving me dry and out of resources to fill up those around me.
December became about bookmarks and pause buttons. As a wave would come there would be one thing that would be clear and within my grasp to hold on to. A verse - bookmark that, we'll come back to it. A theme or idea - press the pause button here, we'll come back to it. I didn't know when but I knew He would bring me to a quiet time to put it all together. As usual, He is so faithful.
Little indulgences with little consequences brought on overconfidence. New Years Eve was celebrated with an extravagance that I'd been looking forward to. A beautiful bottle of wine I purchased before Christmas just for the occasion. We had a lovely gathering of friends and so much laughter that sides were sore and voices were left gritty. I knew there would be a consequence but it was an infrequent indulgence....a day or two of my body being sore would be okay (alcoholic beverages are on my no-no list of items that will cause a reaction. I generally indulge lightly only every few months.)...but not this time.
"Sometimes God has to put us flat on our backs before we are looking up at Him."
~ Jack Grahm
Tis true. However unpleasant these times are I know that that I will glean so much from them. More than a week later and my body is still reacting. Still tender and sore, weak and shaky. But....looking up at Him is more productive and peace producing than anything else I could be doing in this life. While my body is disturbed, my heart and mind are totally at rest. It is good.
Together, as I've laid in a nest of pillows, He's shown me my focus for this year. Scripture as my outline and two phrases to remember.
- Read the Sermon on the Mount - Matthew 5,6, 7 - and read it often.
- Read scripture daily - I will be using a bible ap on my iPod to read through the New Testament and Psalms.
- 1 Thessalonians 5:16-18 "Rejoice always, pray without ceasing, give thanks in all circumstances; for this is the will of God in Christ Jesus for you."
- Joshua 1:8-9 "This Book of the Law shall not depart from your mouth, but you shall meditate on it day and night, so that you may be careful to do according to all that is written in it. For then you will make your way prosperous, and then you will have good success. Have I not commanded you? Be strong and courageous. Do not be frightened, and do not be dismayed, for the Lord your God is with you wherever you go."
- James 1:2-4 "Count it all joy, my brothers, when you meet trials of various kinds, for you know that the testing of your faith produces steadfastness. And let steadfastness have its full effect, that you may be perfect and complete, lacking in nothing."
- Be buoyant.
- "If it matters, you make the time. If it doesn't, you make excuses." ~Ann Voskamp
I don't know what lies ahead but He does. I trust that this focus, His anchor, will keep me buoyant through whatever comes our way and hopefully, by that trust....I can be His light to help guide others through the waves.
Blessings to you for solid beginnings, a view where your horizon is full of opportunity and joy that keeps you buoyant.