Friday, February 17, 2012

17th February

It’s been a really quiet day. And aside from a headache I’ve felt reasonably good, even managing a fairly strenuous job cleaning my conservatory roof. But I did have a time of sadness when I picked up my guitar to spend time with the Lord. My favourite all time activity is singing and playing in worship and there’s something so special about the way that God touches us when we open our hearts with praise and thanksgiving. I find the hardness that so easily grows with the ongoing slog of day after day challenge, simply melts away, but sometimes it feels as though spending time in this way is the last thing I want to do. Yes oftentimes I feel pretty grotty, just trying to survive another day, and the thought of quieting my mind and slowing down to reach out to God feels too much like hard work. It’s so much easier to succumb to the temptation of rather more worldly pleasures and their instant and easy distraction. Yes when the work of the day is complete let’s pick up a book, play a video game or browse the net… whatever, it all takes my mind off things. But ultimately only God can restore my life, all else is transient and relatively shallow.

Sometime soon I’ll re-engage, get back in the saddle and turn my attention to more constructive activity. I have a whole list of things I’d like to do, such as practising my guitar. I’m already reasonably accomplished having been playing since I was 12, but I sometimes wonder what I might learn to do with a more disciplined approach. I have a keyboard to spread my wings on as well, but then I came across a very interesting Irish Bouzouki for sale which would help me grow in a totally different direction. Then again I have pencils and sketchbooks, oils and acrylics, watercolours and pastels just lying around waiting for attention using any number of easels. My digital still and video photography is transparently at beginner’s level and could well do with studious attention. I know I could get along to an adult education class or join an art group of some sort to meet people, and then there’s the world of volunteering with opportunities at my church or whatever. The problem is, I’m still grieving and nothing much holds my attention. I feel like I’ve lost interest, motivation is very low. But that’s a temporary condition as I remain determined to walk with the Lord and he’ll lead me on I know. More than that I always enjoy spending time with him once I get past the hurdle of messed up emotions. God is bigger than any problem anyway and that’s why it’s a good idea to share them with him.

So today as I picked up my guitar and started singing I soon found myself moved to tears. The Lord softened my heart and I cried over my personal loss once more. Perhaps it’s necessary for my heart to open in this way, allowing grief to freely flow, in order for progress to be made. There’s no safer place to express the deepest feelings than in the presence of God. Hiding anything away is ultimately pointless as one day all will be revealed. But opening up in that way is not easy and the temptation is increasingly to avoid it. Learning to meet with God in the midst of grief, giving the pain over to him and embracing his peace is the best thing I could ever do.

Matthew 5:4 ‘God blesses those who mourn, for they will be comforted.’ (NLT)

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