sin

Man O’ War.

So one of my new year’s goals back in January was to write and record an album. This is the first season of my life where I have felt both the need and the courage to do this, so I’ve been tackling it for the past two and a half months. The process of writing has been wonderful, and it usually flows out of me when the hurricanes of a bad day hit. I didn’t originally have a plan for this album; I just knew I wanted to do it. But as I’ve written, this project has turned into a concept. I never thought I’d be the author of a concept album, because usually my writings and lyrics are so sporadic and don’t really ever flow. But as I’ve been writing, I’ve noticed a common theme, the idea that ties them all together: the sea.

I wrote this one song a month ago on Valentines day, and just recently arranged the music for it. Hopefully Daniel and I can get a rough track done soon. I’d like to share with you the song, but also the thoughts I wrote down before the lyrics came rushing out.

I imagined the idea for this song on my way home from surprising Daniel with his valentine. Earlier I had written about a deep sin struggle, and was reflecting when I thought about the time my sister got stung by a man o’ war jellyfish. I thought about how it wrapped around her body, its tentacles penetrating her skin with its thousands of anchors stuck to her and in her. When they finally got it removed, she was torn up, bloody, swollen and paralyzed. She was unable to move for two weeks. When my sister saw the jellyfish, she went after it because she thought it was a ball. She had no idea that lurking beneath the water were long, dangerous tentacles that were very harmful and potentially fatal.

I liken it to sin. Enticing and often seemingly good and harmless, we chase after something and don’t realize we are about to be consumed by it. Sin burrows into us and holds us captive. And when God decides to rid us of our parasite, we can often be left bloody, broken and barely standing. We eventually heal and come out of it stronger, wiser, more humble and exponentially more compassionate.

However, the stronger the sin, the deeper those anchors go and the more painful it is to have them pulled out. Sin equals death, so when I think about death being pulled out of us, removed by its roots, it is nothing short of a hellish sight.

I want this song to be honest and graphic. I want to take the imagination to a place that paints a realistic picture of what this process is like. In the end, it is worth every bit of pain and terror.

Like a child to a ball
Are my eyes fixed on this
As the child goes after the toy
I will lie cheat and kill to get it
Grabbing it tight
And my eyes shutter with satisfaction
This thing has swallowed me whole

Like a man o’ war anchored into my skin
Deep are the veins that fill with poison
Wrapped around me
Squeezing
Consumed

Don’t rip them out
You’ll tear at my skin
If only gently removed
You might not hurt it
Terror fills my eyes
And the pain leaves me sick
Now I sit in my massacred mess

Like a man o’ war anchored into my skin
Deep are the veins that fill with poison
Wrapped around me
Squeezing
Consumed

Like a child to your knee
Are my eyes fixed on you
I can move whole again
Battle scars were once wounds
Your hands saved me
Thanks for pulling death and I apart
Now I see through new eyes

Spilling Buttons.

A few nights ago while walking into my craft room, I knocked a jar full of buttons off of one of the tables accidentally. The lid wasn’t completely on and the buttons spilled everywhere. My immediate feeling was that of annoyance and a robotic-like desire to clean it up. But something stopped me, and I just looked at it. I must have looked at the buttons and the jar spread across the floor for 5 minutes. An illustration filled my mind. A picture being painted across my craft room floor that looked very similar to my soul’s current state.

Lately, my soul has just been knocked off it’s comfy hiding place and has been spilling out everywhere.

The more Daniel and I feel led to lead, and the more and more God pushes us to bigger things, great is the fear and anxiety that consumes me.

And I’m really starting to see that I cannot be a jar that tries to hold all kinds of buttons. I cannot have the holy spirit trying to fulfill its work inside of me but also have all of the past traumas, sins, memories and regrets. All of these buttons are eventually going to spill out and make a mess (as they have done).

God knocked me over a few weeks ago and it’s been some kind of awful ever since. The beauty of who I am is stifled because of what I choose to define myself by. I haven’t processed, accepted and let go of so many things. The fear and the anxiety are only symptoms of the deeper problem.

The night that God knocked me over I decided that I’ve had enough. I want to be able to watch a tv show with my husband without gasping for breath. I want to be able to let Titan in the backyard without this crazy need to lock the door. I want to be able to go up to a broken sojourner at church and make them feel welcome. I want to love my neighbor SO BAD. I don’t want to worship my family. I want to worship God and have an overflow of love for my family. I don’t want to worship safety. I want to trust in God so much that it compels me to abandon common sense sometimes.

These days have been yucky. The process of digging, exposing and pulling out of sin and buried memories is a violent affair. It looks terrible. It looks like screaming and ugly tears and cigarettes and migraines and exhaustion.

But each painful time it happens, I can breath just a little deeper. My vision becomes a little less cloudy, and the mission is more clear.

If you buy into the lie that in the moment of salvation comes complete sanctification, and are trying so hard to live like you are perfect, then please. STOP. This life that you have chosen to live, the God that you have chosen to follow, is HARD. It is messy. It is painful and often lonely. Suffering is inevitable but also a blessing, because it has an enormous purpose. The bigger the dreams you have, the more God is going to rip the nasty stuff out of you, so ACCEPT IT. It’s an incredible act of love that frees us up do to incredible things. To be big creators. To give, and to give and to keep giving. And ultimately to make room for only Him.

Be encouraged.

Food and Comfort.

Yesterday was just crazy. It started late Sunday night while we were enjoying hang out times with our friends Ray and Allison. Our toilets flooded the hallway and my craft room, leaving the two hubs to clean it up. Around 1 in the morning Abram was consistently awake every 30-45 minutes until I finally took him out of his crib at around 5:30 and realized he was really working hard for each breath (judge me if you want, but I had no idea that was going on. I couldn’t hear any gasping and I just thought he was having a restless night because he’s been teething hardcore lately). We took him to the ER and he was extremely cheerful and energetic for not be able to breath very well. The doctors gave him a few breathing treatments and steroids to open up those lungs and sent us on our way with a crap load of prescriptions. The car was giving us trouble, and Daniel spent a good portion of the evening on the roof trying to figure out where the septic tank was to solve the toilet problem. We slept like the lifeless, most inanimate objects last night. All three of us.

Needless to say, I didn’t get a chance to post yesterday. Sometimes all of these things come at once and you just go into “get crap done” mode and be responsible adults. What was so surprising to me was that Daniel or myself never really freaked out or had a meltdown over all of the stuff. Whether it was a huge sense of peace, or we were just too tired to feel anything, we handled it pretty well and as a team. It felt good.

However…. I did find a great deal of comfort in food yesterday. Which leads me into the meat of what I want to share. Now I realize this is about to get pretty spiritual or “religious.” I know blogs like the kind I am trying to have usually keep it pretty light and positive. But I want people to see every part of me, not just the cute and “crafty” parts.

This is what I wrote in my journal this morning, and this was my written prayer afterwards:

Sometimes food is everything. This is a reality that I’ve been denying for a long time, because it is shameful and humiliating. Food makes me feel so good for those few seconds or minutes that I am eating it. My problems go away. I’m addicted to that comfort. I worship that comfort through food. Why? I hate this so much, more than any other time I’ve dealt with it in my life. I hate it because it makes me weak and leaves me feeling like a failure. I hate it because it means I am a little like my dad. I hate it most because it keeps me from feeling pretty and sexy (regardless of how he sees me) for Daniel. I want to hate it because it comes between God and I, but truthfully I don’t think about that nearly as much. I’ve turned two inherently good things into evil idols of worship: food and comfort. I’m not getting my refuge and sustenance from God because I’m not seeking it out.

Father,

I want to overcome this so bad. But I just realized it’s for the wrong reasons. It’s all wrong, every bit of it. I’m trapped, enslaved, chained to this sin struggle. I need you to save me from this. It’s just another confirmation that I’ll never stop needing the gospel. As painful as I can imagine this is going to be, please break me of this sin. It’s roots are deep, possibly to the darkest caves and trenches of my sub-conscious and soul. It’s probably going to be bloody, so please douse the wounds with grace and mercy, never ceasing to show me how much You love me. I want to come out of this strong, and proclaiming your name.

Your Beloved,

Megan

 

As hard as it is to reveal the parts of myself that I painfully don’t want others to see, I believe it’s necessary. Transparency will lead to victory. Here’s my struggle right now. What’s yours? Like my pastor said on Sunday, “We are all addicted to something.”