Thursday, May 22, 2008
The Jumping Off Place
Ever have one of those days where you just can’t seem to get a firm footing on how you feel? Yesterday I woke up a bit annoyed with the world. Don’t know why. I got tired later and took a nice nap. Still felt annoyed. Did my chores, wrote a little, picked up Noah and took him to his soccer game. Prepared dinner. Still felt edgy and tired and even a bit enraged. Poor Scooby. When he wouldn’t poop last night on our walk, I became angry with him.
“If you poop during the night, I am going to be furious with you, Scooby.”
I am sure he heard, “Blah, blah, blah Scooby.” But my tone communicated no treat.
So I went to bed. Couldn’t sleep.
I have dealt with night fears in the past and so John has a habit of waking up to pray for me. It’s like he has developed a sixth Godly sense of when I can’t sleep. Or maybe it’s because I kick him occasionally, hoping he will wake up.
Last night he woke up.
I whispered, “Will you pray for me? My spirit is…well, I just feel like jumping off a cliff.”
This is where I expected my husband to pray, “Father, give Robbie joy.” Or “Help Robbie to not jump into depression.”
Instead, my sleepy husband prayed softly, “Father, catch Robbie.”
It kind of woke me up. Catch me? You want me to jump? He then said “I love you” and promptly turned over and went back to sleep. I almost giggled out loud thinking that maybe this was my husband’s true subconscious feelings coming out. Maybe he wanted me to jump to my death. I envisioned scenes from Hitchcock’s “Vertigo.”
Yep, I know. Quite an imagination, Robbie. Or at least a neurotic one.
But then the Spirit of God starting working on me.
”Father, catch Robbie.”
Maybe I should jump. Maybe that was exactly what God wanted me to do. Just jump off the cliff of CONTROL.
My friend Kay talked to me the other day about that state of wanting to be “okay” all the time. In fact she said to me, “I am learning it is okay to NOT be okay.”
I felt so attacked yesterday. When I sat and really thought about it, it stemmed from someone trying to comfort me after the conference. I didn’t like that they were trying to rescue me. I had a great time and got great news. Sure I got rejected but that is what goes with writing. But this dear sweet person wanted to make sure I was “okay.” There it is again. “Okay.”
I am OKAY.
I’m OKAY, ALL RIGHT! Leave me alone.
Well, maybe I am not okay. But what’s wrong with that?
Wow. To be strong became so important to me. See, I don’t want to be needy. I don’t want to give the impression that I cannot handle life on my own. I felt so sick of being around Christians who can’t handle pain accept to try to solve it or pray for it or mollify it with verses. Sometimes, we just have to BE in pain. But many times Christians, including myself, feel the need to jump to the rescue.
Harsh? Yep. But that is exactly how I felt. So much so, that my pride opened myself up to the Enemy’s discouraging attacks. He is so adept at finding the cracks in our hearts and pouring poison in so that we believe the worst.
I love that my husband did not give me a verse to chew on. I love that he didn’t start counseling me. (Don’t get me wrong – the Word of God or good counsel is just what I need most of the time – but not this time.)
He just prayed, “Father, catch Robbie.”
And you know what? I jumped.
I just said, “God, I feel horrible and I need You. I don’t feel okay. So, here I go. No bungee cord on my emotions. I am just going to jump into the abyss of not having control over how I feel.”
God caught me. Hard to explain how that went or felt. But I slept. Soundly. At peace.
I don’t have to explain every single emotion I have to myself. Seems like I waste a lot of time trying to analyze me so that I may know or CONTROL exactly how I deal with each emotion.
Sometimes I just need to jump.
God is a good catcher.
After I wrote this, I thought “The Jumping Off Place” is a good title. But I didn’t know exactly what that meant, although I had heard it somewhere. So I looked it up. It is an idiom meaning “A starting point for a journey or venture.”