Love fights through the false no matter how true it feels

by Craig on September 8, 2011

If we don't fight with 1 cor 13 Love against negative voices the inner critic skulks back insource

It’s a return to the Love War on the negative voices that I know I keep alleging is coming to an end.

I’ve enjoyed the break from thinking about them…
but in the not thinking about them…
even the ones that I say I have mastered…
have begun to skulk back in.

And a confession…

I write every post…
a tightrope walk with no net…
always writing the post for this particular day…
in the predawn hours…
of this particular day.

This, while not knowing from one day to the next whether I’ll be able to think clearly, much less write well enough for you, because of this more than decade long lack of sleep.

And I have to confess…
that before I write…
every. single. time…
a massive dark and billowy cloud hovers between me and the sun…
and I don’t need to hear the actual words…
“You aren’t good enough.”…
“You can’t do this.”…
to feel the feeling.

the storm of negative voices hits ever every. single. time I write a postsource

And I am convinced of both.

And yet I’ve now written over 400 posts in my first 9 months of blogging.
And I know that I don’t post a new post on the weekends…
and I feel a little like a slacker for that…
until I remember that I write two posts a day that take three hours apiece…
because it’s not just the thinking, and the prayer, and the writing…
and the images…
oh how I get so immersed in finding the perfect images…
and how I try so hard to create something usable…
redeemable…
with a speck of grace to present fresh and unique each day.

And never mind this sleepless mind that makes for editing twenty times what I used to have to edit five.

And every single morning…
I’ve gotten up before dawn…
thinking I can’t do it…
and every single morning…
I then sit down…
and do…
and there isn’t a single post of the 400 plus…
with which I haven’t been pleased.

You would think that would be enough proof to blow the cloud away and unblock the sun.

For us with negative voices, the "I'm not good enough" voices, i'll be a life long Love War. source

And I’m thinking this: for those of us with negative voices that besiege us – the “I’m not good enough” voices, maybe it’ll be a life long Love War against them. Maybe it’ll be a little like a fight against any addiction, knowing that it’s a lifetime battle versus that demon – never letting defenses down, and never give in, not once.

And so I come to the end of this post…

post number 424-ish…

one more I was certain I wouldn’t be able to write…

and did…

and it really wasn’t so bad I think…

It was kind of a joy.

So why won’t I remember that tomorrow in the predawn hours as I rise to write again?

{ 13 comments… read them below or add one }

Cora September 8, 2011 at 9:36 am

Craig, I think I came to the conclusion, too, that it will be a lifelong war with these voices and horses and a host of other things that just seem to buck the taming process. Under my feet right now is a big lump of chocolate lab who is now 4 years old and bucks against every bit of training and all the rules all the time. I can’t believe I actually PICKED this one out — all because of his happy, “I LOVE YOU”, exhuberant, “take ME home”, I’m wonderful act he had been taught so well. It worked! If ever there was a war, it was with this 100 pounds of chocolate. We flunked out of training school, which came to be better known as “bad boy school.” And we still play tug of war with rules of behavior. Buster is my living, breathing “in my face” example of the horse war and the voice war.

The “I’m not good enough” is thrown in my face at LEAST once a day — many times, more than that. I’m fighting it now over something that is subtle and sneaky, because there ARE some things in life that I AM NOT GOOD ENOUGH to be doing, they are beyond my knowledge and/or capability and/or God-given gifts. To find that line in the sand again — where we know it is RIGHT to say no and WRONG to say yes — and where does the “I can do all things through Christ” fit into that???

You, Craig, are NOT a slacker!!!! At least, not from what I know of you and your diligence and care with your blog and Laska. As you once stated, most of your readers are women and you HAVE to know that women talk!!!! Your stuff does not end with the person reading, by any means. I share what I read here — not only content, but how it affects me. And believe it or not, LOTS of us share with each other here in blogland and cause ripple effects with what you have said and how it flows in and through us all. So all the hours you put into your posts are continually being used and well worth it.

I can’t imagine the sleep problem. I only know a little of it, as I don’t sleep well at all, even when I sleep, as it is a restless, half awake, tossing and turning type of sleep. But to go for periods of time as you have described. . . . . . I can’t even begin to say I understand. But I do know that through whatever weaknesses you feel hold you back, God is working through those to where WE are gaining strength. Does that make any sense???? God’s strength working through your weakness and reaching to US out here, strengthening us readers and bringing us into a deeper relationship with Christ. And for that, I thank HIM and YOU!

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Andrea Dawn September 8, 2011 at 11:15 am

Dear Cora,
Something you said in your comment is screaming at me to respond. ” . . there ARE some things in life that I AM NOT GOOD ENOUGH to be doing, they are beyond my knowledge and/or capability and/or God-given gifts.”
This is just my opinion . . . being GOOD ENOUGH has NOTHING to do with WHAT we can do! I cannot fly a plane (and have no desire to do so) but that does NOT make me not good enough to do it if I wanted to and trained to do that. There are many things that I cannot do well enough to make a living at or pursue as a hobby, but my value as a person is not tied to what I can or cannot do. If we were all good at doing everything we would need nobody and God has planned for us to interdependent.
I could be wrong but if I understand correctly, the voice you hear implies that there is something intrinsically wrong with you, that makes you not good enough. I used to hear that too . . . and believed it. UGHH!
When God was creating all that is, it is recorded that He saw that it was good . . . and when he created man . . . it was very good. All that He creates is good . . . and as a new creation, dear lady, YOU are VERY GOOD! Good enought to love and be loved, apart from anything you can or cannot do.
Hugs to you, Andrea Dawn

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Craig September 8, 2011 at 1:14 pm

umm…ummm…amen! That is all ツ

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Craig September 8, 2011 at 1:05 pm

about your four-legged chocolate bar – this morning – just after dawn – I took Laska the love Kitty out to the porch – and he thought about it a little bit – but decided the 15 foot jump down wasn’t so bad – he wanted to go for a walk. I looked down at him – he looked up at me – he knew enough to stay where he was until I went inside put my shoes on and came around to where he was – then he started to walk. He’s getting smarter – but during the walk as I was telling him “no!” to the sewer – he ran across the road – another no – and as I was following him around reprimanding him and telling him to stop – him meowing back at me and tentatively moving away – he went into a “forest” – another no. I went in after him – and he came out – and then ran back across the road – and waited – and I decided no more discipline – and we continued the walk – and he was good. Even obedient little love kitties have their moments of rebellion.

And “I can do all things” has context which changes the meaning a little bit – that verse is always taken out of context. And I’ve already peaked at Andrea Dawn’s comment – haven’t read the whole thing yet – but I think she’s right – how can you do that which are not built for – what you have not learned.

and about your kind words – just speechless – thank you – and God bless you Cora.

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Dawn September 8, 2011 at 9:49 am

Dear Craig,

I don’t know that being a little fearful about a post is not a good thing. Every year a few new graduate nurses come to work with those of us who have been around awhile. Invariably they ask through breathlessness and wide eyes, “Is it ok to feel overwhelmed? Is this normal?”

I always reply the same way, “The day you are so sure of yourself that you are not at least a little bit afraid is the day you are no longer useful. You cannot know how to take care of everything that will happen to every single patient in the course of a day of caring. Just when you think you have seen it all, something new appears and you must reach outside yourself for the answers. This uncertainty is always unsettling, but it is what keeps a good nurse ever vigilant and, therefore, excellent.”

I think the same can be said of a writer–a compassionate, caring writer. The day he doesn’t care or is so certain he is good that he doesn’t have to listen to the voices of his readers, he loses his cutting edge. The very reason you are hammered by “the voices” is because you care. Really, they keep you close to the Savior and to us. Why don’t you look them in the voice tomorrow morning and thank them for keeping you close to the source of your success. You need to reframe this, Craig.

Go get ’em,
Dawn

PS “It is not by force or by strength, but by my Spirit, says the Lord Almighty.” Zechariah 4:6b (Your name is not Zerubbabel, but it’s God’s rhema word to you today.

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Craig September 8, 2011 at 1:11 pm

Not by might, not by power, but by my spirit – Amen. And look the voice “in the voice” *snort*

And I do want everything I write here to be – to be perfect – and I forget that perfection is not required in this life – oh how I need to listen to my own words. No? Or your words ツ and did you know that I have a first edition – mint condition Florence Nightingale book – something about letters to her nurses or something like that – I bet you know of that book ( mischievous grin)

Thank you Dawn, and God bless you and the muttlies.

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Dawn September 8, 2011 at 2:38 pm

Craig,

Hang on to that first edition of Notes on Nursing published in 1860. I am so jealous. It was the start of it all. Florence, now there was someone who saw what needed to be done and DID it. She was rich so she could have sat around all the Victorian day doing crafty things, going to dances and reprimanding servants, but she wanted to help others. I mean SHE wanted to help others. She scrubbed and cleaned and trained and managed and she kept immaculate records that proved she was making a difference. She did the hard work, accepted the responsibility for HER decisions and saved many lives. She was no handmaiden of the doctor. She was the physician’s equal and she made no apologies concerning her contributions to the the healing process. Do you get the feeling I think she’s pretty special? I do.

And the book is in mint condition, eh?
Dawn

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Craig September 10, 2011 at 4:57 pm

The book was worth a lot of money – I say was – because now I remember – it was given to me by a friend when I was in my homeless period – So I could sell it on eBay and get some money. I never did sell it. But after the homeless period, as I found out that her daughter was going to school for nursing, I thought it would make a really nice gift back – and I was glad that I didn’t sell it for the money. And yes, I think you heart Florence Nightingale ! ツ God bless you Dawn.

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Debbie September 9, 2011 at 2:42 am

I wondered how those walks with Laska go. . .And I wondered about the voices too. God bless you Craig, for fighting the good fight for us each day. And doing great! I couldn’t handle two posts a day even for one day. :)
God bless you and all He has planned.

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Craig September 10, 2011 at 4:47 pm

You know – maybe there should be a post soon describing these walks – each one is a little adventure for the love kitty – and me– and the pictures!!! The walks are awesome – the only cat around you can take on a walk without a leash. God bless you Debbie!

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A. September 9, 2011 at 10:11 am

Craig, I am grateful that you have hung in there and plugged away faithfully despite all your challenges. Your post is a tremendous encouragement, place of learning, place of gentle admonition, and more. You also have created a warm haven for your commenting community. I am so glad you haven’t given in to those voices. I appreciate and second Dawn’s suggestion to reframe some of the voices’ messages. I need to do that, too.

I am also grateful for Laska’s budding efforts at writing and blogging! Laska is just as gifted as you are in this!

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Craig September 10, 2011 at 4:51 pm

The war against the negative voices is almost over – when it is each and every one of those voices will have a new “reframing” – but they won’t go away – they’ll always come back – and so having them “reframed” – or in my words retrained, or broken. That I think will be really helpful. Still, every time I write something, and look at it and say – that’s good – I almost immedeatly doubt that I’ll ever be able to write anything good again. Interesting huh? and I really can’t believe that I shared that – on the inter-webs! Oh well – no masks this year right? God bless you A.

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Michelle September 12, 2011 at 5:12 am

I thought of you today. I had a girlfriend come into work today. If you could have met her when she first started with us about a year ago …… she’d been a shut-in for near on 13 years since moving to the town, she lives with her mother and son, her teenage son hadn’t spoken to her for nearly three years, she drank to cover the loneliness, and she finally found a good doctor, managed to come out to op shops (thrift stores) because there was no pressure to buy, she could just browse and talk to people if she wanted, and asked if she could volunteer with us, and has been with us since, she has come a loooong way ……. Anyways, she came in today and I said she looked a little ‘dark’. She shared that her mother had accused her unjustly of something without asking her what she had done. What made me think of you was she said “That’s not fair! That’s not who I am anymore!” She REFUSED to listen to the voices coming in the accusation! She took a stand! I was so proud of her. And we prayed together reinforcing the right voices and what God has done in her life in the last 12 months.

So, your words, your battle with the voices, is spreading across this great globe. May you never give up the daily battle.

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