Monday, September 18, 2006

Rest

Two days ago I woke up at 7:30 pm. That wasn't a typo. I awakened to start my day as it was becoming night. I can't tell you how badly I felt about it. A wave of self-loathing and shame rippled through me and I could hardly stand myself.

I'm in the thick of the night. It's early for it, but it is what it is. It didn't take long for things to go south since I start my day at night and with a heaping dose of self-hate. Before the night was over, I'd cried incessantly, frightened everyone in the house, and seriously considered exiting stage left, only a long time ago I made a promise to me not to murder myself. Even though I've had three attempts, I've managed to keep my promise for the last ten years, no matter how tough things have gotten.

I'm a survivor.

I've been communicating with a friend by email, and she too has experienced this night. She prayed for and exhorted me, and one of the most touching things she said was that I wouldn't loathe a friend who was sick and needed sleep. She said I was doing exactly what God wanted me to do: resting. I just cried and cried when I read that, because I wouldn't loathe a sick friend who was resting. It saddened me that I could not extend to myself the easy grace that I'd liberally offer another.

I've been reading the devotional book God Calling. It's written by "two friends", women who'd gathered together to pray. During these times, Jesus speaks to them, and they wrote the things He said. The entries are all in Jesus words to the friends (to all of us, really). Both women had seen more than there fair share of tragedy, poverty and suffering. I figured I could relate. Because I'd had such extremely harsh days, I missed some of the devotions. I went back and read in a quite space this morning. One entry moved me so deeply:

September 15

Quiet Strenght

"Rest in Me. When tired nature rebels it is her call for rest. Rest then, until My Life Power flows through you.

Have no fear for the future. Be quiet, be still, and in that very stillness your strength will come and will be maintained.

The world sees strenght in action. In My Kingdom it is known that strenght lies in quiet. "In quietness and in confidence shall be your strenght." Such a promise! Such glorious fulfillment! The strength of Peace and the Peace of strength. Rest in me. Joy in me."



That's so delicious, isn't it? It's an icon of God's mercy. He really does know all that we can bear. He doesn't despise us when we're weak. It's then that He really shows off. That night, when I hated myself for not waking up, He loved me perfectly as I slept.

I have a lot to learn about Him.

Mair

11 comments:

Joni said...

Just remember, dear Mair, your Lord knows about the night. He suffered in the night, too. As He was betrayed...as He prayed for the Father's will...as the sun darkened while He hung on the cross...as He went through the three days...and yet, there is always Resurrection.

Cling to that hope in the dark times. And know that you are in my prayers, dear sister.

Paula said...

Sweet Mair,
Rest in grace. I'm thinking of the Scripture that says, "He gives His beloved sleep."

Bonnie Calhoun said...

I'm praying for you dear friend. Thru God...all things are possible!

Katy said...

Here are the words my hubby and I wrote to a song based on that verse:

"Quiet me, quiet me, with your love.
In quietness and confidence comes strength from above...

Lord, I depend on your love for me,
Lord, my heart is not proud.
Like a weaned child is my soul within me,
Gratefully my knees are bowed...

Quiet me, quiet me, with your love.
In quietness and confidence comes strength from above."

When I meet you, Mair, I will sing it to you.....

Katy McKenna

Mirtika said...

I regularly wake up at weird hours, and today I woke up at 7:00 pm. I'm thinking of yo uslept that long, you NEEDED to sleep that long. :) And you're right--show yourself grace. God lets lions sleep 20 hours a day. And hamsters, apparently (having owned one). I'm thinking we humans are the weird ones who don't let ourselves sleep what we need cause we set ourselves up impossible schedules in impossibly busy lives.

So, sleep guiltlessly.

BTW, I received the book safely. THANK YOU.

Mir

shanna said...

I think the most gracious gift Jesus offers us is rest from ourselves.

Don't diss the gift.

Mwah.

Kristine said...

You have been on my mind so much lately. I wish I could offer you a blanket with words of comfort, words from Christ, so that you could wrap yourself in the truth in such a conflicting very dark time. My thoughts and prayers are with you. My sisters are going through this darkness as well right now so I understand firsthand how difficult this can be.

Kristine said...

O God,
My life is cluttered up with conflicts.
And there are times
when you seem so oblivious to it all.
The pitfalls before me, the weaknesses within me –
All this is most depressing.
I feel as if I am groping in utter darkness.

Break into my darkness, O God.
Set me free from my hang-ups.
May these daily pressures
that threaten to strangle me
drive me to Your fountainhead of grace.
Then night will give way to the dawn,
depression shall resolve into joy,
and I shall sing Your praises once more.

O foolish spirit,
why do you fret over so many things?
God is here!
He knows all about your troubles and trials.
Renew your faith in Him, and rejoice.

I shall rejoice!
No matter how black the night,
God is my ever- present and eternal hope.

Psalms/Now – Leslie F. Brandt

Bek said...

hey, i really needed this today. thank you. He loves us. really loves us. really really loves us.

Tiffany said...

I smile when I peek in on my children sleeping. Something about them sleeping gives me joy.

I'm sure God smiled as you rested.

Mirtika said...

Just posting to let you know you came up in one of my "google alerts" on Christian Fiction, as follows:

Ann Arbor News--
Claudia Mair Burney of Ann Arbor has published a first novel, "Murder, Mayhem and a Fine Man.'' The story revolves around forensic pyschologist Amanda Bell Brown who confronts a complicated murder investigation, and "a closet full of skeletons'' as she turns 40. The book comes from NavPress, a publisher specializing in spiritual books, magazines and other materials. Publicity material describe it as "Christian chick-lit with flava.''