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Archive for February, 2012


Father,

I know You want me to trust You completely,

And I do—at least, most of the time.

Because of what has hurt me so deeply,

Coupled with of my feelings of worthlessness,

I still struggle to believe that You love me—

That You accept me just the way I am,

Regardless of how wayward I have been.

I don’t see how You could—not really.

Perhaps that’s why I whine and remain timid,

Even though Your desire is for me

To be resilient, strong, and self-assured.

I desire inner strength, but that is rarely an option.

Father, how could You love someone like me?

That You do is a truth I cannot comprehend.

Such love and acceptance is beyond my grasp.

Your word says You love me despite everything,

Even when my self-defeating behavior

Consumes me and has dominion over my life.

As I recognize how faithful You are,

My trust increases and becomes sounder,

But it still isn’t where it needs to be—not really.

I pretend to be strong—to be supremely confident,

But I’m not nearly the person on the inside

That I appear to be on the outside.

I profess to be what I am not—

To be far more secure than I really am.

I even try to fool myself,

But You know each of my frailties,

Which I attempt to mask and to hide.

I don’t know why You care so much about me,

When I don’t care that much about myself.

This is a mystery I doubt I will ever grasp.

In my quiet moments, which I attempt to avoid,

I try to comprehend such love and caring,

But I simply cannot.

O Lord, Thou hast searched me and known me. Thou does know when I sit down and when I rise up; Thou dost understand my thought from afar. Thou dost scrutinize my path and my lying down, and art intimately acquainted with all my ways. Even before there is a word on my tongue, behold, O Lord, Thou dost know it all. Thou hast enclosed me behind and before, and laid Thy hand upon me. Such knowledge is too wonderful for me; it is to high, I cannot attain to it. (Psalm 139:1-6)

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Periodically, I post comments from others. This is Matilda’s experience, which I will now share with you:I have shared before that I was a victim of sexual abuse and I really did look for death. I have been in this prayer space you mention so many times. I could not understand how someone I loved could do that to me. Then I could not understand why I did not hate her after she had. I still can’t so there it is.I didn’t find death when I tried to suicide 3 times but I did find a place where I was scared of God. It turns out this was a good place to find as I was also very angry that God did not let me die. I started living using His guidelines reluctantly because nothing else seemed to work and years and years and years later have found a place where I now love God and know for certain God loves me.

The recent faith work I have been doing is working on loving my enemies as Jesus said we need to so we can know God’s own nature for our selves. Last night I had this dream that makes sense to me and explains how powerful accepting the bread and wine of the last supper is. This is the symbolic act of allowing the body and blood of Jesus to become our life. It is how Christ lives in us. His life is holy and it cancels the power of sin in us and sin when when it comes against us.

Here is my dream from last night.

WHEN THE SPIDER BITES

In that twilight between being asleep and awake I found in my dream a spindle web spider I had heard could infest an area. I examined the one I had that was for examination and could not detect why it was such a cause for alarm.

Later in the dream a live one appeared that was as it would be in the wild and it got tangled in my hair. Its legs were much longer than the one I had examined and had a willowy spindly grace that enabled them to float on the air currents.

When the spider landed on me the spindly web stuck to my eyes creating a veil but I got it away and got the spider out of my hair. Getting the web off was very hard due to its stickiness so I went to a tap and washed my hands.

Later I was outside and I saw a tiny spindly web spider floating on the breeze like dandelions do. The more I allowed my attention to focus on them the more I could see and there were thousands of them floating in the breeze yet they were nearly invisible until one hit you and the spider bit you.

I watched a spindly spider float near me and with a slight change in the breeze it hit me then bit me. Before I had a chance to fill with fear of the harm it might cause me the holiness of God filled me in a flash and injected itself into the spider as it bit. The spider filled with light and the invisible web surrounding it was illuminated like fiber optic cables till a delicate glowing orb floated away.

This was the first of a plague of spiders and as each one bit it was filled with light till I was surrounded by a delightful mist of glowing floating orbs with a spirit filled spider at the center of each one. It was so wonderful I felt joy that the spiders got to know what it is like to be filled with God’s own light. We were a collective living breathing community who knew the same joy.

This for me is the mystery of the Eucharist illuminated. When each of us consumes the body and blood of Christ we get filled with his light, his life and his love and become a community united and enlightened by his joy. Simple isn’t it.

Fear not. The steadfast love of the Lord never ceases – his mercies never come to an end. His perfect love casts out all fear.

My sadness at being bitten by the spider who was my abuser has been changed into gladness that nothing is impossible with God. His will is to fill all things with himself so we can all know his joy – good and bad alike.

If you have read this – have a wonder filled day.

Blessings to you from
Matilda in Australia

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Father,

Here I am once again,

At the end of myself,

Feeling like a fool,

Feeling like I haven’t learned a thing.

It seems as if I’ve been here so often.

My times of sorrow and suffering

Have far surpassed my times of contentment.

Be gracious to me, Lord,

Let me know what You have in store for me.

Assure me that my pain has been purposeful—

That my years have not been a total waste,

Devoid of meaning—devoid of value.

I want to cast my anxieties upon You

But when I do, they don’t stay there.

Instead, they haunt my mind constantly,

Exacting a terrible, debilitating vengeance,

Impacting every fiber of my being.

I want to be strong, but I am not.

I’m so weak—so used to defeat

That sorrow has become my daily drink.

Rescue me, Father. Pour out Your grace,

And allow me to know joy once again.

Let my cup overflow with blessing.

Allow my life to again have value,

And instruct me about what that will be.

I fear that my days will end

Before any good will ever materialize,

Leaving a wasted, purposeless existence.

Without Your active intervention,

All will be lost and irredeemable.

I know that; I’m certain of it.

As I wake in the morning and retire at night,

That realization is ever before me.

That’s not what I want, Father,

And I know it is not what You desire either.

Arouse Thyself, why doest Thou sleep, O Lord? Awake, do not reject us forever. Why dost Thou hide Thy face, and forget our affliction and our oppression? For our soul has sunk down into the dust; our body cleaves to the earth. Rise up, be our help, and redeem us for the sake of Thy righteousness. (Psalm 44:23-26)

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Father,

I don’t just think I’ve been mistreated,

I know I have been mistreated.

And You know I’ve been wronged as well.

I’ve told You what happened repeatedly.

Everybody in my life knows my story.

Now that it has been a while since my abuse,

Everybody else seems to have progressed

With their lives—except for me.

I remain stuck in my debilitating mindset,

Which has not changed appreciably,

Despite the passage of so much time.

It’s infuriating and unfair that I’m the one

Who continues to experience so much pain.

Those who used, abused, and discarded me

Should be the ones to pay, but they haven’t.

I’m the one that continues to languish.

By refusing to move on with my life,

I know that I’m not hurting them—not one bit.

I’m only hurting myself and those around me.

It’s not fair. It’s not fair at all,

But I can’t live like this any longer.

I don’t want to waste my future harboring resentment,

Rehashing my drama repeatedly in my mind,

But it’s going to be difficult to get back on track.

I didn’t realize I had drifted so far from You, Father.

I didn’t realize how willful I had become,

But now I do. It becomes clearer each day.

I have blamed others for my plight for so long,

That bitterness seems normal—even comfortable,

Which frightens me for what lies ahead.

Show me how to find my way back to You.

—Jack Watts

Finally, brethren, whatever is true, whatever is honorable, whatever is right, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is of good repute, if there is any excellence and if anything worthy of praise, let you mind dwell on these things. (Philippians 4:8)

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Father,

You’ve brought my soul out of bondage—

Out of the shackles of my

Self-defeating behavior for a purpose,

Which is beyond my capacity to fathom.

In the blindness of my pain and distress,

Which have filled my days and nights,

I have implored You relentlessly,

Insisting that You ease my pain

And grant me the desires of my heart.

Regardless of my repeated complaints,

Which I’ve audaciously called prayers,

You have never relented—not even a little.

You have never blessed my demands

Nor allowed me to have my own way,

Regardless of my fervent and frequent insistence.

Unmoved, You have just gone about the task

Of transforming my heart from the inside out,

Changing me at the core of my being,

Making me a far better version of myself

Than I have ever been or dreamed of being.

Now, as my distress and angst have abated

And my painful sorrows have relinquished,

For the first time I can look back

And be thankful that You understand me

Better than I understand myself.

Your plan is better than what I desired for myself.

As I come to fathom all that You have done,

I marvel at the changes You have orchestrated,

Which have strengthened me and made me grateful.

Having no idea what’s in store for the future,

I gladly give You permission to finish

The work You have begun in me.

Let my petty, whining nature become a memory—

A distant recollection of my childish ways—

As I seek Your will rather than dictating my own.

How lovely on the mountains are the feet of him who brings good news, who announces peace and brings good news of happiness, who announces salvation, and says to Zion, “Your God reigns!” Listen! Your watchmen lift up their voices, they shout joyfully together; for they will see with their own eyes when the Lord restores Zion. Break forth, shout joyfully together, you waste places of Jerusalem; for the Lord has comforted His people, He has redeemed Jerusalem. The Lord has bared His holy arm in the sight of all the nations; that all the ends of the earth may see the salvation of our God. (Isaiah 52:7-10)

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Father,

Here I am once again,

At the end of myself,

Feeling like a fool,

Feeling like I haven’t learned a thing.

It seems as if I’ve been here so often.

My times of sorrow and suffering

Have far surpassed my times of contentment.

Be gracious to me, Lord,

Let me know what You have in store for me.

Assure me that my pain has been purposeful—

That my years have not been a total waste,

Devoid of meaning—devoid of value.

I want to cast my anxieties upon You

But when I do, they don’t stay there.

Instead, they haunt my mind constantly,

Exacting a terrible, debilitating vengeance,

Impacting every fiber of my being.

I want to be strong, but I am not.

I’m so weak—so used to defeat

That sorrow has become my daily drink.

Rescue me, Father. Pour out Your grace,

And allow me to know joy once again.

Let my cup overflow with blessing.

Allow my life to again have value,

And instruct me about what that will be.

I fear that my days will end

Before any good will ever materialize,

Leaving a wasted, purposeless existence.

Without Your active intervention,

All will be lost and irredeemable.

I know that; I’m certain of it.

As I wake in the morning and retire at night,

That realization is ever before me.

That’s not what I want, Father,

And I know it is not what You desire either.

Arouse Thyself, why doest Thou sleep, O Lord? Awake, do not reject us forever. Why dost Thou hide Thy face, and forget our affliction and our oppression? For our soul has sunk down into the dust; our body cleaves to the earth. Rise up, be our help, and redeem us for the sake of Thy righteousness. (Psalm 44:23-26)

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Stating the Problem:

Father,

It is so distressing and disheartening

To see how far we have strayed

From the people we once were—

From who You called us to be.

As our elected leaders seek to enhance

Their personal fortunes by betraying

The public trust, while shamelssly

Pointing an accusing finger at their peers—

The miscreants caught abusing those they swore to serve.

Nearly all of our pompous officials condemn deceitfulness,

Puffing themselves up in self-righteous denunciation,

while eschewing candor and forthrightness themselves.

Few focus consistently on the best interests of the people.

On both sides of the aisle, these self-serving men calculate,

Seeking advantage and acclaim, as their serpentine tongues

Twist the truth into a lie or a lie into the truth.

Having lost all fear of God, these ignoble miscreants

Have turned the American way into something

That You could not does not honor or bless.

—Jack Watts

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