Encouragement is a funny thing. There are multiple times in the course of a stressful day when I wonder how many people love me. I know on a cerebral level that I am loved; I just don’t always feel it. Sure, there are incredible moments when I am overwhelmed by love, unable to contain my appreciation. There are many other times when–faced with self-doubts, insecurities and fears–I wish someone would pop by and remind me that all will be well. It seems that that happens when I don’t “feel” vulnerable. Why is that? Why is it that when I feel dandy, the encouragement appears but when I’m down in the dumps I can’t find someone to share my pain?
You know those days when you pick up the phone and nobody’s answering? Or when you email and no one responds? Those days when you feel stretched, ready to snap or needy, desirous of company and like smoke, friends and family vanish. I have so many of those days that my current philosophy is that those are the days when God wants me to turn to Him. I’m halfway convinced that God is making me more and more dependent on Him and not others. Otherwise how could one explain how lonely I feel at times and NO ONE is around to remind me that God loves me? So I am left reminding myself. And reminding myself is a good habit to form because people are fickle, frail and self-absorbed beings who struggle with their own walk. God is cultivating (with me kicking and screaming) a spirit of turning toward Him first–leaning on Him first. My natural inclination is to lean on some physical being but then I run the risk of cherishing that person more than I do God. Last time I checked nothing–bar none–could separate me from the love of God that is in Christ Jesus and that includes my selfish desire to have people uplift me instead of God. It’s not as if He didn’t tell me that He wasn’t a jealous God and would brook no one before Him.
Sometimes I look at my time in da burgh as both a crucible and a womb. I look at all the people who have been brought into my life and wonder at how God has used me in their lives. To be honest I also wonder how much these people take me granted. It is as WP mentioned last night. We create boxes for people. We do not allow them to venture from those boxes. In doing so we paralyze their expression of themselves to us. When they do venture out of the box we place them in; we deny what our senses tell us. I am guilty of this. I wish I wasn’t. I wish I had more patience to deal with people who annoy/drain me. Currently I don’t. Perhaps it is that way because I feel as if I am already more patient and loving than other people so if people bother me they aren’t worthy of my love. Aaah–self-delusion and pride! Who am I to decide which persons are deserving of my affection? Who am I to desire constant encouragement from others? Who am I to be jealous of those who are fawned over simply because they are perceived to be “weaker” then me?
How often have a railed against the perception that others have of me wherein I beam positivity, sunshine, optimism, courage and peace? What a paradox. To want to be loved so desperately that it hurts yet to be cautious in whom I become vulnerable to because I fear they can not “handle” the intensity of my emotions. I want conditional relationships. Relationships where I decide when, where, how people enter my life. To be the master of my own ship. Me, Me, Me.
In direct opposition to God, God, God. Hmmph. Funnily enough I am at my most calm when I am focused on God. When I am centered on the sheer ENORMITY of Jehovah. When I remind myself that He will never leave me nor forsake me. When I pray; reciting verses of God’s providence, redemption and never-ending love. So even in my selfishness, I realize that the ultimate fulfillment of myself is in God–who resides in me. Whew.
The lab is closing in 30 minutes. Summer hours.