I took my journal and my iphone with me on my bike ride and stopped at Spring Lake to sit for awhile. My friend, Jan, really encouraged me to just listen for God...to be silent...to be patient. I watched the activity on the lake...fish jumping out of the water and birds dive bombing the lake to get them. I didn't know who to cheer for - the bird to get one or the fish to get away! As I sat there, I just drank in the beauty of that lake and the peacefulness of it all. I really don't know how long I sat just watching the lake, but then my thoughts began to turn to how much I missed having time like this to sit....and then God starting speaking to me again. He said, "Cynthia, I have so much I want to say to you, but you are very distracted with noise. I am not taking about your kids, your job, or your responsibilities...I'm talking about your thought life." He brought me to Philippians 4:8. I love YouVersion. It is the greatest app for me because of the ability to view so many different translations of the Bible. I was drawn to THE MESSAGE version of this verse...
"I’d say you’ll do best by filling your
minds and meditating on things true, noble, reputable, authentic,
compelling, gracious—the best, not the worst; the beautiful, not the
ugly; things to praise, not things to curse."
This is a familiar verse to me. I've always used this verse as a standard for information intake...I would call it "The Philippians 4:8 test." Honestly, I haven't "taken the test" in awhile with regard to my life as a whole. God began to reveal to me how much of the negatives of life I had been focussing on...the economy, my recent friends' marriages unraveling, our personal finances, raising the kids...pretty much all the big stuff. Then came the BIG hammer..."Cynthia, the noise I am REALLY talking about...is your TV. You are filling what empty space you have with TV and there is no room for me to speak to you." Now, here's the deal. I don't watch a lot of TV. News in the morning...DVR old movies and Seinfeld...but I have an awful time falling asleep. I have Panic Anxiety Disorder so bedtime is the hardest part of the day for me. Mine is genetic and a generally mild case, but still something I deal with everyday. So I have the TV on at night when I am trying to fall asleep...not really watching, just on...noise. This is a bad habit I started when I was nursing Sydney 5 years ago. I would be awake with her, and then try to go back to sleep and the panic anxiety would hit me. So how do I stop? I'm canceling everything but basic cable (local channels.) No more DVR. Now before you start thinking I'm freaking out, Todd and I had been discussing this for about a week. We are such internet people that we weren't using our cable very much. We have been trying to continue to cut our monthly expenses (Thanks, Dave!) and this is a HUGE expense. So, this was confirmation for me. Our cable gets cut off today, so it starts today. I'll let you you know how it goes.
But that was just the beginning of God revealing truth to me from Philippians 4...