I wrote the previous blog on Thursday night, but didn’t have the emotional energy to publish it until Saturday.
I was quite intrigued with the unexpected insight of how I default to processing pain and pleasure with God, not people, therefore have such a high engagement level with God, easily trusting Him, but not so with people. It was a very new idea, but quite logical when I looked at the data.
What was maddening is that I am very good at caring about others, and engaging with them in a way that they let me in. On the last flight home, I was pretty much a mess, but I noticed that the flight attendant was wearing some fun shoes.
Now AA has set the standard for the last 20 years for the least attractive flight attendant shoes, so I wondered. I waited until she was done with her work and just chilling, and I commented on her shoes and asked her if there had been a change of policy or she was just feeling like a free spirit today.
She instantly grabbed the “free spirit” comment and shared that there were new uniforms coming out, and as of the first of the month, there was a “Nazi” who would be enforcing compliance. She whipped out her cell phone and began showing me pictures of herself in the new uniforms, with rancor. Each one merited a more negative comment until she arrived at the last one and said, “And THIS one makes me look like a nun!”
She let me in and received the caring even though we don’t even know each other’s names and will probably never meet again.
I do that a lot. I observe. I comment. They open up. I care. They receive. I leave. Life goes on.
So if that is such an ordinary part of my life, why is it so extraordinarily hard for me to receive the same kind of casual, well meaning caring, or deeply felt caring from people I have known for a long time?
I pondered that for hours. Even though the neurological answer was compelling, my spirit quietly added that there was a lie involved. I would not receive care and compassion because . . .
I poked around there intermittently on Thursday night until I fell asleep, but never found the rest of the sentence. On Friday, I still was not up for work, so I began scrolling through the last few days. I identified people who had done good to me or sent compassion, caring, gentleness, tenderness, love, honor, admiration my way. I was intrigued with the number of different English words there are for sending good emotions to another person.
And as I turned each event, large or small, around in my mind, examining it, savoring it, seeking to receive it, my spirit would comment, “That one is safe.”
So clearly part of the mystery sentence was “I won’t receive care and compassion because it is not safe . . .” but I don’t know what “not safe” looks like yet. Clearly Friday’s journey through the recent experiences all passed the fear-based test. Sure hope I can surface some “not safe” care and compassion soon so I can decode the rest of the mystery.
Meanwhile, on another front, I figured I should explore the possibility of critters causing or exacerbating some of the pain.
According to one intercessor I checked with, there were three different points along the journey where I got mugged. As a point of reference, God has been taking me on a journey lately exposing me to some really weird dark creatures. The instructions are to avoid understanding them and simply find out which fractal overcomes them. Works for me.
First spot I was messed with had a fractal of five critters. I know that fractal well, so I dispatched him with efficiency. It had distorted the righteous fractal of five in me, and it took a number of hours for that to come back into alignment.
The second one was a fractal of eight. It was a structure of two parts, one on top of the other. Well, I have no knowledge at all of the fractal of eight, but I have a real simplistic theology: Jesus did it right. So I fairly crudely pummeled it with my microscopic data and my immense faith that Jesus nailed that fractal too. It wasn’t elegant, but I eventually won that battle too.
Feels like that fractal in me is not right yet, and I can’t figure out the words to ask God to make it right, so am still circling around it and pondering what there is to learn.
I was quite surprised that with all the work I had done in the last few days, I was still recovering so slowly. In addition to what I had done, the Holy Spirit had raised up a quite remarkable strike force to cover me in Algonquin before I knew I was in trouble. It has been fun to hear your reports as you share what you were praying and when.
For all that pre-preemptive prayer, and my pretty intentional push back, things were just creeping along.
Eventually I quit grinding on the fractal of eight, knowing I could come back to that as often as needed, and went to the third spot that had been tagged as a place of defilement. There it was an unknown critter that was simply parasitic, sucking the life of God out of me. That was swiftly dispatched and I began to bounce back within the hour. I am quite pleased to be rid of that one.
So that is the Saturday afternoon report. Still chasing the fear-based lie. Wondering about the fractal of eight. But feeling much better in spirit and soul, and suspect that my body will be more cheerful on Sunday too.
Then I can start some deeper work.
Copyright August 2016 by Arthur Burk
From the Hub