Writing is a journey, not a destination.

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Friday, June 24, 2011

Tip of the Iceberg

Days of clear, beautiful weather forced me to see my fear of storms as the tip of the iceberg.

For several months, most of this year, actually, stress has built in my life.

Job stress. Self-imposed self-improvement stress. Political and economic stress. Dying cat stress (a dying cat who was well enough to snatch half a chicken breast off my plate and resist my efforts to pry it from her needle-sharp teeth. No fallout I've detected from that little adventure, praise the Lord. One of us now eats lunch in the bathroom, and I'm not telling which one).

Those are the bad stresses.

I've found good stresses, too. New family member stress. Writing and critiquing stress (you're in the good list, Vaulter, never fear and don't stop!). Reading stress. I like the changes, but they require adjustments and that takes its toll, too. 

As I've knelt before God, giving Him my fear of storms, I'm finding all these other fears and stresses crowding to take its place. One by one I'm giving those to God, too, because the vast majority of them are as out of my control as the weather.

I'm also reducing those stresses as best I can, one stress at a time.

It's like I've been sunburned. Where normally I could walk outside without trouble, for the moment, any light or warmth hurts my skin. Only my skin is my psyche and the sunlight is the world.
I'm limiting exposure. Easy on the nightly news and its multiple tragedies (just the weather, please *grin*). Earlier bedtimes until I catch up on the sleep I've missed. Exercising daily to use up that adrenaline. One extracurricular task a night, either critiquing or reading or writing, but not all three and not any if something else is planned, like family time.

And prayer. Kneeling before God every day, at least once a day, reciting my "You take it; I can't" list. Because I can't take it. I'm done with worrying. God will have to be in control.

Memorizing scripture. I'm halfway through Psalm 91, which I learned yesterday is called "the warrior's psalm." That one follows me into sleep at night.

The surprising thing is how this snuck up me. Since my nervous breakdown all those years ago, I'm pretty sensitive to these kinds of emotional pitfalls. In the past, I've spotted them way before they got this bad.

Well, I'm not going to worry about it. God can take this mystery, too.


  1. Writer/artist Mary Anne Radmacher once said "Courage doesn't always roar. Sometimes courage is the little voice at the end of the day that says I'll try again tomorrow."

    Be strong and courageous, Turtle. I admire your willingness to share this journey.

  2. Thanks for sharing this turtle, it takes a lot to get through life and trusting God with everything is so much easier said than done. But sharing your heart, confessing your fears and joys brings you closer to Him and hopefully His people. I've always loved you and am so thankful for you in my (and my families life). Bil

  3. I didn't know there was a "warrior Psalm".
    I'm going to have memorize it too. :)

    My friend...you are smart, gifted and true.
    But more than that...you love others as Christ loves others.
    I've never seen such a lion-hearted Turtle before.
    And I don't think I ever will.
    As Kristen quoted...try again tomorrow. I like that.


  4. Wow. Three of the bravest people I know stopped by to encourage me. Thanks, y'all!

  5. Oh, I just sent some more chapters. Most of what I say is opinion. Take it or leave it. The book is excellent or else I would be able to stomach the length. :P


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