//weird dreams//

So there I was, in my bedroom, pitch black and perfectly tempered, and I awaken suddenly with the thought that I’m surrounded on all sides by Black Widow spiders. Oh and the spiders have Literature Review articles and dollar signs all over them…

I wish I was kidding. Y’all, I was awakened from a deep, wonderful sleep by a dream that absolutely terrified me. I was walking across a street in Norman, just walking along with a few friends and then one of them turned into a spider. It didn’t bother me at first until my other friend said “Linds! Get away from her! She’s a Black Widow!” I jump back, terrified obviously, because I hate spiders in general. But then I turn to my friend and she’s a Black Widow and not just any Black Widow, but one that is staring me down with dollar signs in her many, beady, little eyes. I woke up TERRIFIED. I shook and shuddered in my bed. I started saying the only thing I could slur out of my mouth after being awakened… “Perfect Love casts out all fear… Perfect Love casts out all fear…” I grabbed my phone and slammed the flashlight button. I searched my room for these terrible creatures that could kill me with one bite (can they? I don’t want to look it up to find out… but let’s assume yes). There were none. There was nothing in my bed, on my person, in my ears (I know…weird. I just have this weird thing about my ears and that a spider could live in my ear and I wouldn’t know). I settled back into bed but couldn’t close my eyes. All the while I was franticly looking around my room, I kept reciting “Perfect Love casts out all fear”.

For the first time in a long time, I feel like I understand the phrase “when under pressure, what’s on the inside will work it’s way out”. I’ve been through hard things before. I’ve had the crazy, wandering mind before. I’ve gone through situations where I felt incredibly alone and no one could possibly understand what I was thinking and feeling. In those moments, it took pep talks from my sisters and closest friends to bring me to the place of scripture to combat the thoughts that won’t stop. This time, I was alone, at a ridiculous hour of the night and the first thing that came out without me even thinking was scripture. I’d like to think I’ve turned over a new leaf. The opposite of fear isn’t strength or even belief in the thing you are scared of or whatever; what is most important is love. Love combats fear better than anything else. And not love of money, or food or chocolate, but the perfect love of Jesus. I was sitting in service yesterday at Antioch and Chris Bennett was talking about how our heart without Jesus is screwed up. It’s deceitful and terrible, but when we accepted Jesus as our Lord and Savior, we were given his heart. It doesn’t mean we’re exempt from fear or deceitfulness, but it does mean we have the ability to love like Jesus and receive love from Jesus. I needed to hear that because I realized what I’m truly afraid of. I’m not afraid of being alone… I live alone in a new place. I’m not afraid of not being a mom or married… I could be a mom to some deserving children in the Foster Care system and I know there’s a wonderful guy out there for me. I’m not afraid of people. I love spending time with people and hearing their stories. What I’m afraid of…disappointing Jesus…so much so, I’ve lived in shame and guilt for several years for things that aren’t even that bad in the grand scheme of things. I’ve been worried that even my most minute decisions I will disappoint the One constant in my life. That’s painful. And it’s self-inflicted pain! Ugh! Being a human SUCKS sometimes! I was in my car today, getting ready to drop off my rent check that is going to leave a pretty big dent in my bank account, and I felt this peace come over me. “I wouldn’t bring you this far to leave you. I’ve promised you I’m going to provide, so let me. I don’t work in the “suddenly” moments you see. I’ve got your entire life planned out, and every movement is planned. I’ve got this… Just trust. Have peace and move forward.”

That’s so hard…but so good. Thank you God for this moment and the challenges that come with it. So, I will not be afraid of spiders or the ridiculous lit review I have coming up. I won’t be afraid of the dollar signs either… I will have peace. I will choose peace and trust above all things…

Linds

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