Wednesday, March 15, 2006

Swatting the lord of the Flies

Two weeks into the fast . . .
It still amazes me that I am able to flick away fearful thoughts like so many flies crawling on the wall. Of course, old Beelzebub--"the Lord of the Flies"--isn't going to buzz off so easily. If he can't scare me in the light of day, he'll try terrorizing me in the shadowland of my dreams.
Three times this past week I've dreamed about the things that frighten me most--abandonment, rejection and loss. These particular fears have been my unwanted companions for as far back as my memory stretches. I have one vivid recollection of lying in a motel bed, trying desperately to stay awake because I was scared to death that if I fell asleep, my parents would sneak away in the night and leave me. I must have been around 5 years old, and we were on vacation. I don't remember why I feared abandonment, but I recall the terrible anxiety all too well. It is the same terror I feel at the propect of being abandoned by loved ones in my recent dreams.
Previously, these dreams would have wrecked me. And I did awaken with an adrenaline rush of fear and a sick feeling in the pit of my stomach after each nightmare. But as the dreams faded, I would recall that fear is not from the Lord, the dream was not real, and that I could choose to reject night terrors just as easily as daytime worries.
And that's what I did.
The verse I've been meditating on the past few days is:
"I sought the Lord and He answered me, He delivered me from all my fears." Ps. 34:4
Thank You, Jesus, for delivering me both day and night!