There is a line from a book or film which would, more or less say the above. Whether at rest or at work, I am experiencing a strange sensation at the moment; my body and my mind appear or feel rather disconnected; like a dream.
I could say that this is positive, but I would actually be lying ! I have never experienced anything like it – that constant feeling of looking at something for five seconds and then turning away to look at something else – a permanent feeling like you are distracted. And then there is the time when your mind is strong and connects to your body, or at least for a minute it does !
I was running the other week and I had really struggled with my sleeping for the last few nights; so much so that I had to take it a bit easy and run in a slower group. I was still struggling in this one and felt like I was not going to make it; but my mind won over my body. I made my body obedient to my mind – I was 'going' to make it. I secretly hoped that another person in my group would “bail” and ask to stop before I did. This makes me chuckle now.
Question - why am I so obsessed with how things look?
Since when did I become so obsessed with how things “looked” or appeared to others? I was not being remotely competitive and was already asking myself if I can fake it until the end - yes fake being OK and able to finish when I cannot. We all want to project the best image of ourselves, don’t we? Whether on Facebook or twitter or Instagram.
We want to look our healthiest, happiest and funniest selves. None of this is necessarily wrong, but why is it SUCH a big deal?
And – When you fake being “fine”.
It got me thinking – how many times am I guilty of saying “I am fine” when I am not. It got me thinking about how the mind can, far from being a place of peace, be a place of incredible contradiction and pain, where sometimes you cannot see the wood through the trees and where you feel far from your soul.
The mind is meant to be a place where God dwells and is King, but it sometimes feels to me like God has left the building. I remember phrases, sometimes that have been spoken at my church. Among one of them was this phrase that I will never forget “ God, is after my thoughts “.
As I wonder if anyone is after 'me'; either my character or my femininity, it is odd to think that the God of heaven is after my thoughts and all that I am. It means that once again, I wonder at why God would want any part of me at all, particularly when I am grappling with life and its challenges.
What does God think ?
When I have a moment to think and reflect on how God sees me, I see that he has picked up my thoughts like he might pick up a precious stone or rare treasure and he carefully examines and ponders it, not worrying about if it is dirty or repetitive.
He picks it up and seems to smile with love directly at me, like these thoughts delight and please him because even the dirty and weird ones bring me close and show him more of me. The thoughts are then carefully organised, like a curator of a gallery might piece together a narrative out of an artistic collection; or a geologist might list the different crystals within a semi exposed stone.
God wants to examine and work with the pictures that you have. When I think on how God ponders my thoughts I know that my mind is blown and reconfigured again and again. How he loves me !
God has more for me
And yet! There is always an and yet isn’t there? The ‘and yet’ for me has been a hold on does God want me to remain here? Does God want me to stay where I am and have no growth in my mind at all? Does he want me to be stuck in the same old ways like a hamster in a wheel?
The more I think about what God’s standard of thinking and being IS, the more I get disheartened as it seems like I can never bring my thoughts into line. They control me.
Conclusion – try plank and praise
Little by little I am changing. I am trying something new! Has anybody ever seen ‘Legally Blonde’? There is a moment where the main character, Elle Woods is talking about a ‘Bend and snap’ manoeuvre, where a woman pretends that they have dropped a pencil and they pick it up and snap back!
It is meant to be a way of attracting attention! I have a new spiritual manoeuvre. it is called the “plank and praise”. I lie on the ground with my toes touching the floor and my arms straight – it is like a press-up but you hold it for a given length of time. I am also choosing to Praise the Lord, rather than let my nervous thoughts build up.
The connection is; I strengthen my body and I strengthen my mind at the same time. The plank builds tone in your body – and in the same way the “praise” builds tone in your relationship with God. It brings definition to your prayer; you praise God because he is holy and awesome and mighty and a provider which then defines how you pray and what you pray for.
If you are praising God because he is a provider, your ASK of ‘God, provide’ becomes a faith filled declaration. If you know that God is 'love' – your 'ask' of “God, show me your love’ transforms itself into 'God you' are love. My head is slowly changing its frantic and nervous thoughts. Plank and praise people. No praise, no pain, no gain.
Rosie Robinson from England has been a young writer for four years.
Rosie Robinson is a PSI young writer based in England.