Tuesday, February 3, 2009

"Self talk, Soul talk," Chap. 5; Awake, my soul...

If I were to try to go into everything that I realized from this chapter of “Self Talk, Soul Talk” by Jennifer Rothschild, I would probably re-write the whole chapter.

The other chapters were good. They introduced the topic of our thought closets and the things we put in there… how to re-label the things in there already… how to start taking the truth and stocking our closets with that rather than lies fed to us by past circumstances, the world or the enemy.

This chapter spoke right into a situation in my life TODAY! This very day, I was asked to do something, and you should have heard the negative self talk going on in my head. I went to the coffee shop and sat and got the chance to read this chapter.

Jennifer first talked about making sure that we weren’t neglecting our souls, by being attentive and daily confessing to God.

She said,
“We become sleepy and apathetic toward some of our poor choices and negative attitudes… we grow accustomed to the grimy buildup that coats the surface of our souls. And we begin to fool ourselves into believing nothing is amiss.”

Essentially we become deceived. We, by neglecting our thought closet and allowing in little lies and wrong labels, find that we are deceived. The things that are the most precious to us are pushed to the back slowly but surely, and they get covered. The precious is left to the corners, and all the junk is in the front of our minds, distracting us and keeping us from what is so important to us.

“Undeception” happens when we call, like David, “Awake, my soul!” We have an ah-ha moment.

Jennifer said,
“At these moments we are most alive… We need constant reminders of truth and a heightened awareness of reality. We must constantly challenge our souls to be fully aware, awake, and tuned in. If we neglect to do so, we’re in danger of forfeiting all that is most precious.”

I need to reflect on what is most precious to me in my life, and identify the things that distract me the most from those precious treasures.

I can be doing good things, but if they distract me from the things that God wants me to do, and keep me from my real treasures, the “good things,” really aren’t that good, are they?

She said,
“Here are two universal questions to ask your soul in any situation. Does this allow me to value my treasure? Does this cause me to treat my treasure with less value?”

As I have discovered, the enemy doesn’t tempt me with evil things to keep me from peace and success spiritually. He can use good things to distract me. Blogging, reading, journalling, TV, going to the coffee shop, etc.

When I become so used to the distractions around me and just “go on” with my life, that’s when I get into trouble. I don’t notice that I am being distracted, and the enemy can have his way with me because I am not on alert at all. I don’t pay attention to the “roaring lion” because I have become desensitized to his noise, and distracted and unaware. I open my thought closet to anything that knocks on the door and accept it in when I don’t have to.

But, as Jennifer said,
“But those thoughts are not yours unless you make them yours. I’m not good enough…I can’t do anything right…I’m just going to give up… These thoughts aren’t yours until you embrace them and invite them into your thought closet. If you do, you’ll find yourself wearing them again and again. But when you are alert and recognize wehre they come from, you will refuse them entry.”

I can totally identify with something else that Jennifer said near the end of the chapter.

“Sometimes the enemy is stress. Sometimes the enemy is my own selfishness. But sometimes the enemy is the roaring lion. Why fight against flesh and blood when the real enemy is invisible? Often the battle is spiritual, and we must fight that battle with spiritual weapons.”

Ok, all this introduction to get back to what I was asked to do today.

I dropped my son off at his 4K class. His teacher, knowing that I usually am the one who can pick him up, asked if I would be able to help her out this afternoon. She had a meeting to go to before school was done, so asked if I would be able to come and help her teacher’s aide by keeping the kids occupied as they got ready. She said the other teacher would help them get their folders set and all, but I just needed to sit with the kids over at the carpet and sing or read to them or something while they were taking turns getting ready to go home.

Inside I started to panic, but told her that I would be there in time for her to leave.

As soon as I left, I started to panic even more. The first thing I started saying to myself was, “I can’t do this! I can’t be in a classroom situation again! I am afraid. I am no good at being a teacher. I can’t do it! Why did I say yes?!” Now, this may seem like an over-reaction, and it was for just needing to sit in the classroom for all of 15 minutes. But if you are interested in knowing the back ground of how these lies first got into my thought closet, see here.

When I got to the coffee shop and started reading this chapter, I was just blown away. Talk about God showing up! On the bottom of pg. 76, Jennifer starts listing lies that the enemy roars at us.

The first one was “You are such a loser” with the truth for our soul being, “In all these things we are more than conquerors though him who loved us.”

Talk about hitting me square between the eyes! That was exactly what I needed to hear. I am more than a conqueror. And it tied right in to the verse that I memorized for these last 15 days. “Do not be anxious about anything…. And the grace of God, which transcends all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus.” (that was just part of the verses from Phil. 4:4-7)

I knew two things right away. I had given Peter’s teacher the right answer by saying I would be there. I also knew that I wasn’t going alone, and that God had had me wait to read this chapter till right before I needed it, to give me that “ah-ha” moment, and wake me up to where the enemy was still feeding me lies, and I was still accepting them and putting them into my thought closet.

I have to tell you, I think I have this chapter almost completely highlighted. I know the last 2 1/2 pages are for sure!

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