Tuesday, 8 November 2011

Restore my soul

Evening, Lord.

I found this:

Not Psalm 23

The clock is my dictator, I shall not rest,
It maketh me lie down only when exhausted.
It leads me to deep depression,
it hounds my soul.
It leads me in circles of frenzy
for activity's sake.
Even though I run frantically from task to task,
I will never get it all done.
For my 'ideal' is with me,
Deadlines and my need for approval,
they drive me.
They demand performance from me,
beyond the limits of my schedule.
they anoint my head with migraines,
and my in-tray overfloweth.
Surely fatigue and time pressure shall follow me all 
the days, hours and minutes of my life,
And I will dwell in the bonds of frustration 

Marcia K Hornok

I think that either Ms Hornok knew that one day I would read this, or you did. How reassuring to realise that I'm not on my own. If I'd had the words I could have put this together myself. Not because I am constantly active, always on the move - on the contrary, I can laze around with the best of them - but I just don't seem to be able to manage stillness.  Silence.  Rest. I can sleep (oh yes, I am very good at it, given the chance) but rest in you, Lord; I seem to find it so hard. I am always doing. My To Do list runs to several pages and some things have been on there for years. When I do stop, I seem to fill every quiet moment with noise, even just the noise of my own mind. 

I don't know why I seem to resist that stillness, the silence - the other week when I had a day's silent retreat it turned out to be a wonderful, rich, relaxing day that fed my soul. I must learn to find that focus on my own.

I have so many things started but not finished. So many projects 'on the back burner', so many things that I'm involved with because I didn't say no, and I thought that something was expected of me. I worried what people thought of me. I'm getting better at that. I am better than I was six months ago. I know that I want to be needed and I want to be liked. I want people to approve of me and I get in terrible trouble by letting this motivate me rather than what I suspect is the right, appropriate, sensible thing to do. 

I am tired all the time. Physically tired, yes, but this goes with the territory if you have two small children; I would like to have this go away but I know that I might have to wait a few years. I'm mentally tired from the internal gymnastics I do so regularly to keep people happy, to do the things I've said I'll do, to try to fit it all in without ever taking time to recharge; lie down in my green pasture and soak up your presence. 

I am going to sort this out. It might be in baby steps, and I might climb ladders and slip down snakes, but I am going to sort this out. It's taken me oh so very long to identify the problem, but hey, I am going to overlook the fact that I'm late to this party and embrace the fact that I got here at all. 

Lord, you are my Shepherd. I want to lie down in the green pastures, by the still waters, looking up at the blue sky and white clouds, feel the gentle breeze in my hair and hear the whisper of the tall grass. I want to lie down and inhale you; lean against you and feel your strength and warmth and life.  

Restore my soul.


  1. Julie - thankyou for these!


    The Lord is my programmer,
    I shall not crash.
    He installed His software
    On the hard disk of my heart!
    All of His commands are user-friendly,
    His directory guides me to the right choices
    For His name's sake.
    Even though I scroll
    Through the problems of life,
    I will fear no bugs, for He is my back-up,
    His password protects me.
    He prepares a menu before me
    In the presence of my enemies.
    His help is only a keystroke away.
    Surely goodness and mercy will follow me
    All the days of my life.
    And my file will be merged with His
    And saved forever!

    “The 23rd Psalm for Busy People”
    Toki Miyashina

    The Lord is my Pacesetter; I shall not rush.
    He makes me stop and rest for quiet intervals.
    He provides me with images of stillness, which restore my serenity.
    He leads me in ways of efficiency, through calmness of mind, and His guidance is peace.
    Even though I have a great many things to accomplish each day I will not fret, for His presence is here.
    His timelessness, His all-importance, will keep me in balance.
    He prepares refreshment and renewal in the midst of my activity by anointing my mind with His oils of tranquility.
    My cup of joyous energy overflows.
    Surely harmony and effectiveness shall be the fruits of my hours,
    For I shall walk in the peace of my Lord, and dwell in His house forever.


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