Here’s a new poem, based on my recent struggles.
Who am I?
When all is stripped away?
The voices deafened, silenced.
When I don’t have to be
The love, the peace, the everything
When the deep stillborn shadows
Cloud my mind no longer?
When I can peacefully roam,
No longer afraid?
May each illuminated, fractured imperfection
Joyously proclaim my newfound freedom
The glory of my rescue
The brilliant redemption.
I am worthy AS I AM.
Something I am just now realizing I have always struggled with is believing that I am worthy of being loved. I am extremely hard on myself, and I am constantly obsessed with trying to do things, to impress people, to try to prove that I am worthy of love. But it’s never enough…I always have to keep doing more.
I’ve been working through this issue in my small group, and pondering it even more in my head, and I’ve realized that the reason I am constantly on this search for love is because I don’t feel loved in the way that I give and receive love. My love languages are quality time, and acts of service. And I express my love (or feel I should express my love) in a completely selfless way, by dropping whatever I’m doing for myself so I can help and attend to the needs of others.
This isn’t a bad thing. In fact, it’s probably Christlike love. The problem is that I expect completely selfless love, response, and attention from those people I consider friends and family all the time, and I expect myself to show love all the time by doing those things, and that expectation just isn’t realistic. I have other obligations, and other people in my life that I have to tend to, and so do the important people in my life.
I don’t have a solution for this, since it’s not like I can change my love language. I guess it’s just something I will have to keep working through, and praying for, and waiting for God to heal me of.
So, I’ve been struggling a lot with my self-image lately, and here’s a poem that explores that struggle.
I chase it, but to all the wrong places.
Where I find it, it visits,
But only overnight.
I know where its true source lies.
Not within me –where callous voices reign–
But outside, in the love of my Creator.
My mind remains restless, divided.
The lies tearing at me, trying to tear me down
Till nothing is left.
The truth I need to rescue me
Slowly, relentlessly, seeping into every corner of me.
Yet not fully comprising my state of being.
I cannot compromise
Yet I cannot find victory
All I can do is keep on fighting,
And pray that
Just a stray thought of mine…I wish it was possible for me to be totally honest with the people in my life without that truth affecting our relationship at all. One of the most important qualities to me in the people I am friends or family with is honesty, but there are things that I don’t tell some people because they would probably make the other person not want to have anything to do with me, or at least look at me in a much more negative light. But alas, they will probably never know the truth.
So this is going to be a confessional ground for a whole bunch of stuff I’m trying to process, so forgive me if it’s a little too much.
My first topic is that of being a highly sensitive person. Basically what that means is that my brain is wired to be super sensitive to everything around me: visually, sounds, touching, and other people’s emotions. It also, unfortunately, means that I get hurt more easily than most people. Things like criticism (no matter how minor), the wrong tone of voice, or people I really care about brushing me off or not texting/emailing me back really emotionally affect me and are really hurtful sometimes. I get frustrated at times (like tonight) because I know people don’t mean to hurt me by doing those things, and those things and people shouldn’t affect my moods so much. My high sensitivity is one of those things that I kinda wish God hadn’t created me with sometimes…
The other thing that’s been on my mind is best summed up in this quote from a study I’ve been going through called Theodyssey.
“When fear dominates our lives and our value and worth are in jeopardy, we often resort to being productive. We can push away self doubt, anxiety, and fear and be in control.”
This pretty much sums up my whole life’s struggle: trying to earn my worth and value by doing things, trying to prove I’m valuable and important and worth loving and knowing and having a relationship with. I do that mostly with people, but it’s probably true of my relationship with God too. This issue has been something I’ve been convicted of for a few months, and it’s something that will probably take me a LONG time, and a lot of divine assistance, to overcome.
I’m super tired, but I feel like I need to write this, so hopefully it makes sense.
Lately, I have been fluctuating between one of two moods. I am either completely at peace and totally relaxed, or really irritable and tired of my life.
When I spend time with God in silence before I go to sleep, when I’m in my new small group for TheOdyssey, when I take time to answer deep questions and be fed spiritually by doing my small group homework, and when I share my poetry book with people or get compliments about it, I feel blissful, totally at peace and able to enjoy my life and see all the good things God has given me.
But then when I oversleep, I get stuck in traffic both to and from work, my day at work seems to drag on, when I have too much to do, when my day just seems cursed, when finances get tight, all the peace disappears. I’m exhausted, everything and everyone makes me irritated and angry, and I just want to be at home so I can slerp for a long time.
I know mood fluctuations are normal, but it frustrates me that the peace and joy I have goes away so easily. My life would be so much better if I could have these good feelings all the time!
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So a theme in my life lately has been how I need more rest, how I am always busy and multitasking and never truly sit in silence and just relax. This poem was specifically inspired by Matthew 11:28-30, where I feel God is specifically reminding me that in Him I will find rest for my soul.
What will I gain?
Rest for my soul. Peace.
Release from my desperate need to be everything to everyone.
To be me, who I am and how You created me.
What will I lose?
My sense of feeling important. Egomania.
Using every moment to do two, three, four things. Now, just one.
The unceasing cry of of my soul, my body, for renewal and restoration.
The burden I carry of dependence, of restlessness, of being defined by what I do.
Though the struggle will be long,
The battle may seem endless,
I will stay in silence
Cease my striving
And let Your hands come upon me.