Sunday, July 27, 2008

sliver of light

I chose to stay home tonight with my kids while my wife is still away instead of going to house church tonight. I hate to ever miss house church, its an anchor in my week to be with the church gathered in community. But I was/am exhausted continuing to wrestle with the unravelling pieces of my inner life. I'm going to guess that at some point tonight in that meeting, they were praying for me, because I saw a sliver of light in my dark thought processes. I kind of feel like I've been a plane spiraling out of control and i kept looking to the horizon just to see and know which way was up and which way was down. Something kind of broke through to give me just a glimpse of perspective tonight and its a thread I want to keep pulling. I can only assume its because there are people somewhere else praying for me, caring for me more than I care for myself.

I'm doing what i can with what I have to be productive in my turmoil and darkness. I know that I need to keep my heart open because it has been hardening and that just isn't me. I have gotten my guitar back out this week, just had my second gig all by myself playing and singing some old songs and seeing if they connect to that person deep inside me. I think i heard at least echoes of a former self down there, there were some slivers of light, it wasn't all darkness. Its important for me to admit that I am a heartfelt, passionate and emotional person and that I can't keep that bottled up, even if its dark I need to rage towards God. Keep myself open in the hopes that He is going to show up again.

I'm also asking some pretty difficult questions about myself. I'm finding patterns of self-loathing and criticism, remnants of displaced drivenness and perfectionism, and roots of a people-pleasing imprisonment that has left me completely burned out and bitter. mmmmmm, the inner self is just so dang tasty.

I scoured my bookcases for books, old or new that may need to be picked up and thrown at the wall of my mind to see if they stick. Tonight's choice is a bit our of my normal reading cuz is so mainstream christian sub-culture but it's "Get a Life" by Reggie McNeal. I think our denomination sent this to all church planters, i know i didnt' buy it. Here are a couple snippets:
The way you are living today is how you are living life. None of us get today back. . . . We can choose to defer living until some circumstances are met, but that means every day till then is another lost day of life. . . . If you choose to get a life, get ready to ask yourself some hard questions.

Not half bad thoughts, I'm gonna peruse it further. I do know that my circumstances are not nearly bad enough for the inner turmoil I'm feeling, I've got some demons in here that need confronted. Jesus slept on the boat during the storms, I need a piece of that action.

a sliver of light tonight, keep praying church!



Jody said...

I know I've dropped this to you before but it still speaks...

Hold Me Jesus
(Dona Nobis Pacem – He Brings Us Peace)

Well sometimes my life just don't make sense at all
When the mountains look so big and my faith just seems so small

So hold me Jesus 'cause I'm shaking like a leaf

You have been King of my glory,
Won't You be my Prince of peace?

And I wake up in the night and feel the dark
It's so hot inside my soul, I swear there must be blisters on my heart

Surrender don't come natural to me
I'd rather fight You for something I don't really want
Than to take what You give that I need

And I've beat my head against so many walls
Now I'm falling down, I'm falling on my knees

And this Salvation Army band is playing this hymn
And Your grace rings out so deep, it makes my resistance seem so thin

I'm singing hold me Jesus 'cause I'm shaking like a leaf

You have been King of my glory, won't You be my Prince of Peace?
You have been King of my glory, won't You be my Prince of Peace?

Written by Rich Mullins
1 Kings 19:3-13/Matthew 11:25-30

1 Kings 19:3
When Elijah saw how things were, he ran for dear life to Beersheba, far in the south of Judah. He left his young servant there and then went on into the desert another day's journey. He came to a lone broom bush and collapsed in its shade, wanting in the worst way to be done with it all - to just die: "Enough of this, God! Take my life - I'm ready to join my ancestors in the grave!"

Exhausted, he fell asleep under the lone broom bush. Suddenly an angel shook him awake and said, "Get up and eat!"

He looked around and, to his surprise, right by his head were a loaf of bread baked on some coals and a jug of water. He ate the meal and went back to sleep.

The angel of God came back, shook him awake again, and said, "Get up and eat some more - you've got a long journey ahead of you."

He got up, ate and drank his fill, and set out. Nourished by that meal, he walked forty days and nights, all the way to the mountain of God, to Horeb.

When he got there, he crawled into a cave and went to sleep. Then the word of God came to him: "So Elijah, what are you doing here?"

"I've been working my heart out for the God-of-the-Angel-Armies," said Elijah. "The people of Israel have abandoned your covenant, destroyed the places of worship, and murdered your prophets. I'm the only one left, and now they're trying to kill me."

Then he was told, "Go, stand on the mountain at attention before God. God will pass by."

and after the earthquake fire, but God wasn't in the fire; and after the fire a gentle and quiet whisper.

When Elijah heard the quiet voice, he muffled his face with his great cloak, went to the mouth of the cave, and stood there. A quiet voice asked, "So Elijah, now tell me, what are you doing here?"

Matthew 11:25
Abruptly Jesus broke into prayer: "Thank you, Father, Lord of heaven and earth. You've concealed your ways from sophisticates and know-it-alls, but spelled them out clearly to ordinary people.

Yes, Father, that's the way you like to work."

Jesus resumed talking to the people, but now tenderly. "The Father has given me all these things to do and say. This is a unique Father-Son operation, coming out of Father and Son intimacies and knowledge. No one knows the Son the way the Father does, nor the Father the way the Son does. But I'm not keeping it to myself; I'm ready to go over it line by line with anyone willing to listen.

"Are you tired? Worn out? Burned out on religion? Come to me. Get away with me and you'll recover your life. I'll show you how to take a real rest.

Walk with me and work with me - watch how I do it. Learn the unforced rhythms of grace. I won't lay anything heavy or ill-fitting on you.

Keep company with me and you'll learn to live freely and lightly."

Marsh said...

thank you, jody. and amen.