Lately my heart has felt very dead. Dead to just about everything. It's kind of a rough place to be in because I like to be alive, but I'm walking around feeling so lifeless. The thought came to me the other day that my brain needs a heartbeat. I can logically tell my brain to quit acting so down in the dumps and dead to the world, but no matter how many times I try to convince my brain to wake up, it just stays int this flat line state and no life emerges. So what do I do? How do I wake myself up and feel alive again.
It's quite simple actually, but yet just not something I have fully implemented in my life. My heart and my brain will wake up from this lifeless state as I gaze on the ONE who became life for all men. I get short breaths of that every once in a while, but I have that very human problem of forgetting the things the Lord reveals to me just about the minute He reveals them. I am weak, and I need His strength even to gaze on Him every day.
Last night, after an incredibly lifeless day, I went to bed and prayed, asking the Lord to wake me up. Kind of a random thing to pray when you are trying to fall asleep, but I am tired of my heart being weighed down and not engaging with a life-giving God and knowing His joy every day. I desire that life and I want that joy. After asking the Lord to wake me up, I had a peaceful night of sleep and I woke up this morning feeling like something was different. I didn't really know what it was, but for once I woke up on the right side of the bed and wasn't an automatic grouch in my heart toward all things living.
I ended up skipping the gym this morning because I tripped and injured my ankle yesterday and I am back in a brace for a few days. So I spent my morning relaxing, playing with the dog and cooking a delicious breakfast wondering why I felt happy, and how long it would last. Then I headed off to internship a little early so I could take my Bible to Starbucks and process some things with the Lord.
Well, everything that could go wrong at Starbucks did go wrong while I was there. It was fabulous. There was no place to sit, so I had to sort of squeeze in the middle of 3 business men in the couch area. Picture that one my friends! Then I had ordered a Pumpkin Spice Mocha, my all time favorite drink and something I don't get to enjoy very often on my limited budget, but I was given a Starbucks card so I thought I would indulge. Somehow when I said, "Grande Pumpkin Spice Mocha" the barista's brain interpreted it as "Grande 2 pump white mocha, 2 pump peppermint with extra sprinkles". I'm not one to complain about getting the wrong drink, but peppermint has got to be one of the worst things you can put inside coffee and so there I was sipping and gagging and trying not to spit my drink out on the suit of the business man next to me. I could do nothing else but go and talk to the Barista and stand up for my Starbucks rights. But I tried to do it with a smile and let her know that I understood she was busy. The good attitude worked well for me and I got a smile, a new drink, and a coupon for a free drink the next time I come in. How grand is that???
Anyway, all of that is to say that by the time I got to my internship I was feeling very much alive, a sensation I have not known for some weeks now. Somehow a switch got flipped in the night and God turned my happiness back on. He woke me up. Then I got to internship and I listened to a message by Allen Hood. He was talking about Jesus coming as a man and what that really means to us. And at some point he said, "You have permission to love Jesus" and he began talking about how Jesus came to earth so that He could relate to each of us and understand us. He said Jesus understands our quirks and He wants to relate to us on those levels. I sat there listening to the teaching and realizing that it's okay for me to love Jesus the way He created me to love Him. I don't have to be plopped in a love mold and enjoy Jesus a certain way. He created me and He delights in me, and He doesn't want me to change my personality and my likes and dislikes before I hang out with Him. He wants me as I am.
I think I've just grown up in a lot of molds, people putting me in boxes, and I listened to what people said. Sometimes I don't do the things I enjoy in life because someone else tells me that I'm not good at it or that I simply can't do it. I grew up being told I didn't have an imagination and that I couldn't sing, and that I wasn't a good writer. Those are all things I've believed and so I don't play, I don't sing and I don't write. Now by adult standards, maybe I don't have the greatest voice in the world, but who tells a 6 year old that they can't sing? Jesus never would have done that. He would have said, "SING LOUDER!"
And so now I need to gaze upon Him and listen to Him, hearing what He has to say about me, and no longer listen to the molds of my childhood. To some degree I've been boxed in, feeling so dead, but wanting to feel alive. I can't say I feel totally alive today, but I am beginning to breathe in the fresh air, and I know that He is waking me up and giving my brain a heartbeat.