Thursday, June 14, 2007

Unidentified Mind Wanderings

Sleep deprived minds have an unconscious way about them. They have this tendency toward internal chaos while successfully keeping the mind-owner in the dark about the growing inner riot. Different levels of sleep deprivation exist however, such that no person is safe from experiencing the best and worse case scenarios in a matter of minutes.

This week, I have averaged 5 hours of sleep a night. For many young twenty-something professionals, this is an apparent norm. I am not a huge fan! I continually set the personal goal of getting to bed early and inevitably make it to bed 1.5 hours after that time. I ignore the alarm that goes off in my head which says to me, "Melody, tomorrow will suck if you keep at this." I have no idea why I ignore this warning as it always tells the truth. I have a hard time discerning if this is a moment when God is speaking or if it's my perfectionist side tending toward self-punishment for once again not following a personal rule or boundary. When I arrive at the point that the decision between either or is necessary, my thoughts get thrown into a melting pot and I lose the choice to decide.

It is a foreign experience when I process thoughts, feelings and emotions at lightening speed when I am tired. It's almost as if a greyhound has been let loose in my mind, but my mind is filled with molasses, resulting in that inevitable uproar that ends in the shut-down of all mental function and coherence until I am able to get my needed drug: sleep.

What a wonderful thing this drug is. It can heal and destroy the body. Enough sleep lends itself to a rested body with a joyful soul. Too much sleep sends the body towards a depressive state that directs one into that downward spiral of natural drunkenness. I have used it in both cases and find that the former is the optimal use of such potency.

Ambling away from mind-numbing exhaustion, I find myself ready to hop back into bed and hopefully will wake-up rested with a joyful soul. I will let you know. Until then good-night...or should I say good-afternoon?

Tuesday, June 12, 2007

Tender Words

A thought that continually captivates me is that our entire existence was created by the spoken word:

"In the beginning God created the heavens and the earth. Now the earth was formless and empty, darkness was over the surface of the deep, and the Spirit of God was hovering over the waters. And God said," (Genesis 1:1-3a, emphasis added)

There you have it folks, everything as we know it comes from that simple truth: we are, because He spoke.

One evening, as I sat a listened to our guest speaker at church, Margaret Feinberg, something struck me. "We have an outrageously talkative God," she said. In my mind the words flashed, "No, I'm outrageously talkative." For the briefest of moments, I almost missed the point.

You see, since I was a little girl, I have been told that I talk too much. On good days, I've been told that I have a lot to say. I think at some level, it's true, my words have been many, although what other form of expression can one expect from an avid bookworm? During my late teen and early adult years, my self-consciousness for talking grew. It wasn't that I would typically see eyes glaze over, or that I would suddenly find myself alone on the street talking to myself. It was something more than that, something that became a ruling factor in my life that I still battle today. In my twisted little mind, somehow I decided that talking too much equaled my worthlessness. So, I stopped talking, and began to listen.

To this day, I am amazed at how much I have gleaned from listening to others speak. I have learned that almost everybody talks too much. Virtually everybody is self-conscious about their words and the eloquence of their speech. Many wonder if they matter to the rest of society as they ache inside to get the necessary encouragement from the person who's approval they have sought most of their life. If we truly admit it, we all suffer (or have suffered) from a bout of insecurity, which is a sad state for our human condition. From observation alone, it is safe to say that words and the effect of words not only have the ability to create, but to destroy as well.

When I realized this truth, I started talking again on a more regular basis. All of my fears and insecurities hit me like a brick wall as I stepped out into the unfamiliar. I found that a good healthy does of listening and talking are good for the soul, as I grow from the words I hear and create from the words I send forth.

Getting back to God's spoken word, a subject on which many people have written about, let me share with you what ultimately brought me out of my shell in order to talk again: God spoke to me. He daily whispered tender words of mercy, love, and of compassion. My understanding of how significant I am to God became clearer each moment that I chose to draw near to Him when He whispered to the depths of my soul to "come." He tells me that I am valuable, worth much, precious and beloved. Suddenly, I can't help myself when I hear those gentle affirmations from the Almighty Creator of the Universe. The sweet everythings that are communicated to my heart have healed and will continue to heal. My countenance looks upward as I shine and reflect His radiant glory, wanting the world to know what I know. To know the wondrous beauty and magnificence of God. And you know, I believe once the world knows, they too will start talking again.