Shadow Of Victory

Tuesday, 8 December 2009

Tuesday 8th Dec F is for Feelings part two

Still waffling on about F is for Feelings and I find myself wondering a lot about feelings and blogging. I have been blogging since January this year and I guess I have been pretty open and honest about who I am and what I think...feel..and do...It has been a journey of discovery and some of you have shared your own journeys with me and encouraged me to continue.

There was a spate of negative comments/emails that after some deliberation I didn't publish as I came to the conclusion that if I didn't find them helpful then anyone else reading them wouldn't either.It has been a year of so much happening in every area of life and one that has brought some amazing answers to prayer as well as some prayers that are still on our lips.

I chatted with someone at weekend and we talked about how the blog had made it so much easier for friends to keep up to date with the Mooney happenings and for myself it meant I didn't have to be super jolly or wear a mask and it gave me the freedom to be just generally "not fine".

So...it is with some trepidation that I write this entry and ask the question...have I been too open?..too honest?..too vulnerable?.... I am asking myself the "have I shot myself in the foot " kinda question?. SB preached a sermon last week and spoke about the series he is planning on for the New Year...I think he is basing it on The Beatitudes and is calling it "Recovery". He made the point that many of us find our lives like a rollercoaster and we can go up and down and he was praying that this series would help us to be on an even keel. I listened to that and didn't think too much about it other than to think..."oh sounds good...look forward to that in new year". Later that day a friend in conversation said to me..."the new sermon series sounds Tailor made for you "....we carried on talking but after a couple of minutes I asked her what she meant .

Her reply really shocked me...she said that reading my blog over last few months had made her realise how "wobbly" my Christian walk was and how much I seemed to need some "propping up ". To be honest I was so hit between the eyes that I couldn't even make any kind of response and she obviously thought that what she said wasn't any big deal and walked off......I have been following Christ and laying my life before Him for nearly 25 years and I am the first to hold my hand up and say ...yep...I have had my struggles BUT I have never for one minute stopped walking...or stopped following...or stopped believing....or stopped hoping...or stopped asking....or stopped persevering....

In the beginning of my Christian faith...as I came face to face with some huge issues from my childhood I limped and crawled in the spiritual realm and certainly needed loads of "propping" and could certainly relate to being "wobbly" and I am forever grateful for incredibly supportive friends at that time who prayed and encouraged both Chris and I as we came through some very tough times. My perception of my Christian walk at the moment is that I am aiming to live it with the following scriptures in my head...heart..spirit and soul...

I lift up my eyes to the hills...from where my help comes from...
But my eyes are fixed on you.....
Let us fix our eyes on Jesus ..the author and perfecter of our faith.....
The testing of your faith produces perseverance.....
Let us run the race set before us.....


and many more scriptures that talk about how hard it can be to keep on keeping on.....

This conversation happened not long after another friend had shared with me her feelings and thoughts about something I had said and done that had given her some concern about my attitude and that the way I had reacted to something had surprised her.....and so when two people tell me in two different unconnected ways that they are concerned then I must do what a wise man said to me years ago.....I must search for the "nugget of truth" in what has been said to me.

My conclusions are that.....for this last year in every sphere of my life...I have tried to be honest and when I am not "fine" to say it if asked.....I have worn masks for far too long and have found it liberating to learn to live with who I am and with the people who I call friends I have lived a fairly open book type of life. For me...the "up and down rollercoaster " kind of existence I may have shared about in the blog is different from my faith. No matter what has happened in the emotional realm of my life my spirit has remained unshaken and in fact the honesty with myself and others has also opened up a new depth and dimension to my times with God...

One of my favourite books in The New Testament...
Hebrews Ch.4 verse 13 says this....

Nothing in all creation is hidden in Gods sight. Everything is uncovered and laid bare before the eyes of Him to whom we must give account.


For too long I would try and hide my real feelings from God but using the blog and opening up to others has laid me bare and something supernatural has happened through that even if at times my emotions are rollercoasting down the long straight my faith is rock solid and tangible and my eyes are ever fixed and focus-ed on Him.

I will look forward to SBs series in the new year....not because I think it will have special significance for me...I like to think every sermon series I hear has got some significance for me anyway...but because like everyone I need to be encouraged and given tools with which to deepen my faith and to give me the strength that we all need to keep walking..keep running..keep persevering..keep asking..keep believing....keep praying...keep hoping.....

I am not 100% certain whether I will continue to blog....or whether I may keep it private ...My feelings are such that I know that keeping a journal over the years has been an incredible help to me in dealing with "stuff" but whether I continue to go public is a question I will be praying about in these last few weeks of 2009. This has been one of the toughest years I have had for some time and I have no real assurance that 2010 will be any better.....but I know this blog has been a huge part of surviving it with my faith intact and my relationships deeper than ever before so I can see the huge benefits blogging has.....and a small part of me hopes that perhaps I have been of some help to others in helping them to identify wth some of my wafflings....

To finish this entry....my emotions are fairly fragile at present and I am finding that tears are never far from spilling over and I am working hard at maintaining my make up.!!....but please know that " I know that my Redeemer lives " and I have assurance that "He will never leave me nor forsake me "

9 comments:

Ruthie said...

Hi Irene,

I think the only question to ask is 'why did you start blogging?'. Is it something you felt prompted to do by God? If so, then allow God to lead you in how & what you blog. It may also be it was just for a season.

Dear friend, if this is something that you believe God is using to bring YOU healing then carry on. If it is not bringing healing but keeping you going in an emotional circle then I encourage you to stop.

Essentially your blog is for you and for no-one else although it may help others. It is a public journal.

Love you all the same and whatever you decide. xx

diana said...

Irene, Just wanted you to know that you have been a great source of support for myself with writing these blogs, I actively look forward to reading not just how you are but it helps me see that Iam not the only one who struggles with ups and downs of that rollar coaster.
whilst you have been open and honest with everyone, people do have a choice whether to read or not, if it doesn't help them or makes them question you in a different light to how you would like then that's not your problem. People interpret things differently all the time.
I hope that you continue with the blog, whether you do this privately or publicly that is your choice. Thank you for sharing what you have shared with us, I appreciate it. Diana

lucy said...

Hi
I have followed your blog from the beginning and i for one am extremely grateful and admire your openness and honesty. I can identify with so much if not all of what you have shared and find it has made me think of so much.. in regards to my own faith and healing. I really hope you continue blogging. To take off the masks takes a lot of courage and i admire you and your honesty...
Love you loads xxx

Caroline said...

Ach Irene, with 'friends' like that, you don't need enemies eh? What a thoughtless, interfering thing to say! Especially when they obviously themselves had no idea what an impact the comment was making on you. How rude!
You know I'm not of your ilk when it comes to the faith bit, but I for one cannot understand how anyone could have interpreted your writings as indicating any kind of 'wobble' in that vein. I'd say the opposite was far more obvious to a BLIND person. Keep on, either public or private, and don't be paying heed to such folks.
x
Caroline

Jacqui W-G said...

Hi Irene,quite often I start my morning at the computer reading your blog whilst a couple of hundred emails start to fill up my in tray. I don't always reply but feel that today I may be able to contribute something useful.

When you write you are catching a moment, a mood, a stream of consciousness that is real and relevent as it can be in the moment that you write it. It is like pouring molten metal and certainly for you-your writing flows. Once those words are laid down in print they are separate from you and just as molten metal hardens so your words take on substance as others read them.

Your life continues to move on, and yet the words remain capturing a moment in your history. These words are then read by people coming with their own set of preconceived ideas and attitudes. They may read in a hurry, or misinterpret what you have said. You cannot control how they respond. Many will react because you have made them think about something they will not own up to in their own lives.This is painful but it will happen.

I think there is a degree in which we must be real and realise that powerful words about the hand of God changing and shaping you will attract critism. Jesus knew this. he said that a prophet was not welcome in his own town. He knnew what it was to be censured and misunderstood.

As Ruth says-the gifts and calling of God are without repentance. You are a communicator and a leader. Jesus taught us not to judge because that is something God does. He has all the facts. We see and hear in part.

Please be courageous and also be wise.Pray for those who persecute you. keep living a free life and shout it from the housetops!

Jacqui

Anonymous said...

You are and continue to be a very open and honest person when it comes to your feelings and emotions, you like to call a 'spade a spade'. What you have done through your writing has encouraged others immensely.

Personally i believe you have drawn closer to God this last year through what you have done despite the 'busyness' of life both secular and church and for someone to think you are 'wobbling' in your faith goes completely against what i see.

You should keep on doing what you are doing as you are tremendously gifted in using the written and spoken word to express yourself.

If people say things to you then you need to 'choose to be offended or not' What you do through this blog is express who you really are in an open and honest way reflecting your inner thoughts, feelings and emotions.

Keep it up

LOL
CJ

Geri said...

It is very tempting Irene to think, 'Well she knows how I feel!', but just in case,from my heart, know this:

I cherish the past year because I have a friend that I didn't have last year - not this way; not this deep, personal way. And I would possibly never gotten to know you this way without your blog. Yes, you took risks and you took off your mask and you showed your private side in a way that most of us would never have guessed, but how much richer we are for it.

In the end, Ruth is right - this is about you, and what is right for you and your relationship with God. While there is nothing wrong with me getting encouragement from you and your experiences and the way you have turned to God every step of the way, it would be wrong for me to say I depend on it for my own growth, or that I would be 'lost' without it, as I am sure you would never want anyone to say or think that.

No matter what you decide, nothing can take away how much I have been challenged and inspired by you, or how wonderful it is to call you my friend.

Loving you xx

Sandra in Bonnie Scotland said...

Hi my fab friend...I hadn't replied to you last couple of blogs (only excuse being busy) but I am another who is still very much "with" you here re your blog. I've just read all 7 comments before replying and I can only say they ALL resonate most of my own thoughts, so I won't repeat, rather encourage YOU to re-read them all, they all have some "gem" in them - but agree with Ruthie when she advises "If it is not bringing healing but keeping you going in an emotional circle then I encourage you to stop." - only you know the answer there. You know I'm also of Caroline's "ilk" (but with a few "wobbles" to your "ilk" as you've witnessed!!) but I can only say again...re-read these entries from all your friends here, make a decision...either way we're all still here on email if not via blog! Lotsa love, Sands x

Rebecca said...

Hi Irene,

I agree with what has already been said but just want to let you know that I find your blog so encouraging and admire your honesty.

You show that it is possible to get through tough times with God carrying us through and your faith and complete trust in God shines through.

xx