Tuesday, February 24, 2009

Forget Not

It is Yes to God Tuesday and the title of Chapter 5 in the book Self Talk Soul Talk is
Look Back: Forget Not His Benefits, O My Soul.

Timely is this chapter for me. Some of you may be aware that I am in "recovery" and am currently working on what recovery programs call step work. Currently, I am working on...

Step 4 - Made a searching and fearless moral inventory of ourselves.
And my prayer for my group last week was that I would be able to find the difference between remembering for the sake of healing - - - and obsessing. I had not read this chapter at the time of this request, but isn't God good that He answered my prayer before I even prayed it?

Due to where I am currently in my life, my walk with God, the things He has brought me through and what He is teaching me, there are many, many things in this chapter that spoke to my heart. Certainly, I don't want to bore you with repeating all that was written in the book (after all, most of you reading this post have read the chapter too!), so I will TRY to condense what God has shown me - this time.

Milestones. I had not always thought of ALL of my memories as "milestones". Somehow, I had not realized that all memories can become milestones, if we refer back to them as a chance to mark progress and keep on the right path. Jennifer writes, "Remembering is essential to the health of our souls. So we must tell our souls to look back often."
But what was additionally helpful for me to hear was, "Tell your soul to look back only to what is profitable." You see, I don't have any trouble looking back, but it is not always healthy. I look back and regret, look back and wish, look back, look back, and look back.
Going forward I will keep in mind that:
Profitable memories are those that add to your soul wellness rather than subtract from it.
Profitable memories contribute to your personal depth and understanding.
I am having to work through some of those painful memories in this inventory that I am taking. God answers my prayer regarding the balance between healing and obsessing is in these words of Jennifer's, "If you don't label a painful memory with meaning, it will retain a negative connotation. It will be stripped of its potential profit and simply fall into the negative or neutral category in your thought closet if you don't label it with meaning."
So, today, I have a new prayer. I am asking God to guide me to profitable memories and asking Him to help me wisely assign meaning to my milestones. And oh how I look forward to being able to see things through His eyes, the painful and yes, even the pleasant!
Forget Not.
One of my favorite Psalms is Psalm 103. God imprinted it upon my heart when I was having some infertility problems and I desperately wanted to try and have a baby girl. (we did, by the way!) This passage comes up in my life at times in my life when I really need to turn negative (or potentially negative) situations over to Him. It is so with what I am walking through today.
Fortunately, I remember how He has used this verse, because I do journal. I can go into my thought library and pull those stories off of my shelf and remember all that He has done before.
I also loved how Jennifer brought up meditating. We all meditate, some of us with more purpose than others, but we do meditate. The warning about "lethal meditation" is such a good reminder for me. I have been guilty of fixating on memories that are unprofitable. This is lethal.
So, I am remembering. But as I remember, as I evaluate and inventory, I will check and see if what I am remembering is profitable. And for the memories that have no assigned meaning...I am praying and asking. God will reveal the profit behind all things. He has done this with some really difficult things before, I know He can do it with the memories that I am giving over to Him as I type this post.
Praise the LORD, O my soul;
all my inmost being, praise his holy name.
Praise the LORD, O my soul,
and forget not all his benefits-
who forgives all your sins
and heals all your diseases,
who redeems your life from the pit
and crowns you with love and compassion,
who satisfies your desires with good things
so that your youth is renewed like the eagle's.
Psalm 103: 1-5
Thank you, Lord!
Blessings, Friends,
~Liz
For more on Self Talk Soul Talk visit Lelia.

6 comments:

Letters From Midlife said...

I was blessed by what you shared, Liz. God is so patient and good to us.

Paula (SweetPea) said...

You mentioned many of the quotes that were highlighted to me when I read it.

I just posted mine.

Are you and Lelia really hooking up this Friday? I saw your comment on her post. I know from your profiles that you are in TX and Neb though. Just being nosey...didn't know if there was a conference or something happening.

In Him,
Paula

grey like snuffie said...

The looking back is an ify thing for me. When thoughts get stirred up I have to remind myself to pray it through..."does God want to reveal something to me through these memories or is this a time to leave it in the past". Pondering is good but asking God to protect our minds and spirits is so necessary when we're doing the self examinations. Blessings of His best throughout this step.

Laura said...

Liz,

I should be back in your followers now...think I fixed it! Let me know if I'm still not there.

This chapter spoke volumes to me too, friend. I'm cheering you on in your step work. You are a brave lady to go through this program. And it sounds awesome.

Praying for you.

:)Laura

Sue said...

Hi Liz,
It sounds like you are being blessed by the program you are in, and it's awesome how this chapter was an answer to your prayer. As I was reading your post, it seemed like this chapter was an elaboration or explanation of something Jennifer said in the second chapter. "You can't remove those hurtful thoughts, words, and memories, but by the power of God, you can drain them of their potential control over you."

Have fun with Lelia! I hope to meet her one of these days, too. She lives in the same town I do. I wasn't ready to meet her when she first brought it up, but feel like I know her well enough now.

Carol said...

Hi Liz,

What a great post I had read your I'm full post, and it also seemed it went right along with this chapter. This caught me when you wrote this "Somehow, I had not realized that all memories can become milestones, if we refer back to them as a chance to mark progress and keep on the right path"

I have to reread this chapter. I need to ponder it more and go dig deeper into it. I haven't written my post, probably later this week. Brinn being sick, just didn't have my normal quiet time.

Thanks for the inspiration girl. I'll be praying for your as you walk through your steps. I know how hard but cleansing they can be.

Much Love,
Carol