May 9th, 2009

The Reinvention of Me Part 2

Deeply unsatisfied I turned up my soon to be thumping worship music as high as it would go and I jumped on my new treadmill. I had been trying something new lately…spirited worship music while I worked out instead of my usual fair of secular radio. I knew I was a dry soul as of late and had expressed such to some friends here in Dallas. There encouragement to me was baby steps and this was one of their suggestions. 


Today had gone pretty well. Husband was out of town with our six and eight year old leaving me home with only four kids. It practically felt like a vacation as we visited the animal shelter, park and library. Laying around in the afternoon watching David Copperfield  while Little Z napped and then throwing together a quick dinner I really couldn’t complain about my day. However, the deep unsatisfaction that had taken root in my heart frightened me somewhat. What had I become as of late?


As I thumped along to the rhythm of a song whose lyrics I couldn’t make out I set me mouth in a grim straight line. I wasn’t happy. Slowly as I tread along I was aware of my hunched tight shoulders and short gait. I wasn’t just all balled up on the inside but on the outside also. Feeling my throat constrict and my breathing quicken I fought back tears unsure of how to handle my current personal predicament.   Was it okay to confess such things to God that were ruminating in my head? The deep matters of the heart that I didn’t want to even think in the safety of my mind let alone whisper out loud? Instantly I knew that it would be okay. My God liked me to be real and raw I was just sure of it. He would want me to tell him no matter how ugly it was. He knew anyway, right?


By mile two a verse popped into my head, one I had heard probably hundreds of times. Create in me a clean heart and renew a right spirit within me. I grasped onto it like a newborn grabs his mother’s hair, tight and in a fist interweaving fingers with strands making it difficult to pull out. As I thumped along I spoke out loud with emphasis create and renew. Those two words were it. He needed to create in me a new heart. He needed to renew my spirit. I couldn’t do it and believe me I had been trying.   So there I ran and spoke aloud several times this little verse that had welled up in my heart like a city park fountain. Standing straighter I threw back my shoulders and lengthened my stride. New energy came into my step as the music thumped reassuringly in the background. I could even breathe easier as my outlook shifted ever so slightly one wouldn’t know by looking but rather only by feeling. A change was coming and I took great comfort in knowing that just like my life…Rome wasn’t built in a day. However, the process had started. A tiny shift that I hoped would bring me to a place of satisfaction once again.


Picking up my pace for my last mile I began to pray. I prayed over my house and over our particularly difficult four year old child. Aware of how I had been dealing with him naturally and on my own with no help from God and failing miserably over and over again I took great care to listen for His voiced as I prayed. I was reminded that we do not wrestle with flesh and blood but principalities and rooted out the insecurity, rejection, and abandonment in my son and asked for wisdom and patience for us to love him into being right and whole again in this world. My thoughts moved onto me and my insecurities; my indwelling thoughts and my longing for rescue, love, appreciation, and admiration. These things I had been looking to the world for and was coming up painfully short. I could see now that this was one of the deep roots securely attached to my dissatisfaction. Pondering the things that triggered my pain I tucked them away in my heart to think on them and await opportunity to deal. There was too much in a short three mile run to hash out and felt good about my progress today. I was glad that I had felt the shift in my spirit, almost like a trickle in the dam before eventually down the road it gushes out and breaks.  


Cooling down to a walk I chose to not be overwhelmed by all the work and adjustment that needed to happen in my life.   Wasn’t this what our journey was all about? About growing, groaning, learning, laughing, falling, rising, climbing, leaping and so forth? I took great comfort that I truly was a work in progress, clay on the potter’s wheel. Jumping off my treadmill I headed out my front door for a quick walk around my neighborhood block. Breathing deeply through my nose of the sweet Texas air I exhaled out just as deeply into the pitch dark night already thinking about what tomorrow night’s run might bring.