I find some days to be exhilarating from the get go. Others so hard to even lift one foot out of bed.
A great deal of my mood in the morning used to be based on how I physically feel. As I have a body that has had many health issues over the years, this made my days a variable crap shoot as to how I would wake up. Very random, with no discernible pattern.
I grasp that healing is a process, a great deal because of my physical pain over the years.
Starting your day based on how you feel is not healthy. Yet neither is denying your feelings.
I choose to start the day with initially engaging my mind. Reading a devotional while still in bed. Setting my mind on Someone other than me first. This gives me hope, as Jesus is eternal. As I know and feel full well some mornings, I am not.
I then get up. Usually my mind has kicked into gear enough that I surprisingly don’t feel as achy after the first few steps.
Emotionally, we are the same. We all have have a fear or two, a looming situation you are unsure you can handle, a grief you are struggling to cope with. Taking it to Jesus when they come to mind doesn’t mean you are unable to deal with it. It confirms that we are no on our own, and asks for healing from the One who is. Let me give you a very real example from my life.
At the age of three, my father died in a car accident. Not long afterwards, I fell out of the passenger door, freaking both my mom and I out, right after leaving the hospital where my tonsils had just been removed. Somehow, i connected extreme fear to driving at that time.
Between the age of 16 & 19, I had three car accidents as a passenger where I ended up with mild to medium whiplash each time. Between the second and third, i got my driver’s permit. The third really shook me to my core (rear ended in a stopped vehicle where I was sitting in the middle of the back seat with no head rest, hit by a drunk driver who thankfully wasn’t driving too fast), so I didn’t follow through and finalize my license at that time. At 21, as I got behind the wheel of a car to try it again (in a strange neighborhood, not knowing I needed glasses, in the rain one evening while driving my boyfriend’s car) I hit a tree by overshooting a turn. Apparently in that neighborhood, that was a regular occurrence fro the locals, but that was just enough to heighten my fear to full blown panic attack status. I stopped driving. Two years later, six weeks before my wedding and two weeks before final exams, my mother and I were rear ended while stopped at a red light by a bigger vehicle going full speed. It is only grace that I didn’t have to wear a neck brace to my own wedding.
This was my the fifth and most serious whiplash. My neck and shoulders now have permanent tightness and by the end of most days, are tighter and painful.
But not having resolved that fear would have been even more debilitating.
I was all set, after some intense counseling to free me of the fears and car traumas, to learn to drive again at 25 when i became pregnant. I then decided to wait until my youngest was in kindergarten before taking private lessons. Why? I waited until I got six hours or more of sleep per night, so I would be physically rested enough for the mental challenge ahead. I was blunt with my instructor, who appreciated my sharing my accident history and then proceeded to challenge me in a kind way with each lesson. My mother loaned me her car and helped with the one glitch I had , making consistent left hand turns. As a result of the left side of my body having been the most injured in the car accidents, this was a harder skill for me to master than for the average driver.
I am proud to say that I have been driving now for 8 years. Occasionally when driving, one of my fears pops up to try and re-frighten me, but I tell it to get out of my mind as I am a trained experienced driver and God is with me. I couldn’t have made it without proper instruction, support and knowing that I did not have to be a prisoner to past fears any longer.
I have other fears that I am tacking with support and wise counsel. I do know that I still have a way to go to get to where I want to be, but I am not where I was when I started the process either.
it turns out that fall from the car was the basis for my supposed fear of heights. I can say i have been up the CN tower, zip lined and para-sailed after facing and defeating that fear. Three things I never could have imagined myself doing before the process of finding freedom.
Fear limits; freedom allows us to explore who we were designed to be.
Don’t fear the process along the way.