agoraphobia, depression, anxiety, chronic fatigue, cycling,, anxiety, Breast cancer, mastectomy,, change, Prayer, suffering

A dream 16.10.18.

 

Last night, almost a week after my mother’s death, I had my standard, repetitive, university undergraduate bad dream for the millionth time. It goes like this: I have just returned for the next academic year, but am already missing lectures and falling behind with my assignments. I have far too many conflicting things to do. I’m not coping, and feel acutely stressed and anxious. 

However, last night’s dream had some new features. The first was that I bumped into an acquaintance whilst walking through the crowded campus. We talked briefly about the many people we knew who had dropped out of their courses. In fact, he and I seemed to be the only ones who had returned from the previous year. 

The second fresh detail was that I spontaneously joined in with a children’s game, dancing around the outside of their circle, to increase their pleasure and excitement. At the same time, I was keeping a close eye on how each one was coping, ready to tone down my approach if it seemed to be too stressful for some of them. The children belonged to the university crèche, and were playing out of doors with their carers. I was surprised by how much I enjoyed being with them, as this was something I had never experienced before. 

Then came a third new ingredient. I was walking back towards my room with two women students I’d just met in a campus clothes shop. One went a little ahead on her own, whilst I linked arms with the other, chatting in a friendly way. The first woman had seemed cheerful earlier, but now she was silent and looked very tense. As we continued to walk, I found myself wondering whether she might perhaps be feeling anxious, or even panicky. 

Then, suddenly, I saw myself in her – my repeated attempts to get a degree, each ending in failure and breakdown because of suicidal depression, acute anxiety, and severe panic attacks. All these issues went on to become a chronic, ongoing struggle with mental illness and agoraphobia that has dominated my life.

I turned to my new companion, explaining how I thought our friend might be feeling. Then, to my great surprise, I heard myself say that I wished I was working on the campus, perhaps in the clothes shop, or at the crèche, rather than studying. That way, I could still escape from my mother and have something of a university experience, but without the unmanageable demands of academic life on top of so much mental pain.

As I said this, I realised how significant it was, and that I didn’t have to put myself through the impossible stresses of trying to get a degree. For the first time ever during these repetitive university dreams, I saw that I had a choice. Other paths in life were still possible, perhaps even enjoyable, and although I was already part-way through my degree course, it wasn’t too late to make a change. At this thought, my heart leapt with joy, and I was filled with new and unaccustomed hope. Then I woke up.

My university failure dream has never ended like this before, so I decided to catch hold of the experience before it faded, and to share it with you, my online friends.

 

References

Darkness is my closest friend (Psalm 88:18; NLT).

The lame will leap like a deer (Isaiah 35:6; NLT).

“I know the plans I have for you,” says the Lord. “They are plans for good and not for disaster, to give you a future and a hope” (Jeremiah 29:11; NLT).

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Breast cancer, mastectomy,, Faith, hope, love, God, Prayer

When we cannot see you

 

When we cannot see you
Face to face,
Nothing’s more important, Lord, 
Than faith. 

When we’re really struggling 
To cope,
Nothing’s more important, Lord, 
Than hope.

When we start to doubt 
You’re there, above, 
Nothing’s more important, Lord, 
Than love.

When its time for us 
To say Adieu, 
Nothing’s more important, Lord, 
Than you.   

 

References

Three things will last forever – faith, hope, and love – and the greatest of these is love (1 Corinthians 13:13; NLT).

Have faith in God (Mark 11:22; NLT).

We put our hope in the Lord (Psalm 33:20; NLT).

If we love each other, God lives in us, and his love is brought to full expression in us (1 John 4:12; NLT).

We brought nothing with us when we came into the world, and we can’t take anything with us when we leave (1 Timothy 6:7; NLT).

The dust returns to the ground it came from, and the spirit returns to God who gave it (Ecclesiastes 12:7; NIV).

You must love the Lord your God with all your heart, all your soul, all your strength, and all your mind (Luke 10:27; NLT).

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Breast cancer, mastectomy,, Prayer, spiritual development, personal growth, faith, exploration, wholeness,

Spiritual growth

 

Our spiritual growth 
Should never cease,

Until the very moment
Of our death,

When all our faith and hope
Will be fulfilled,

In glorious consummation 
With God’s love.

 

References

Jesus told him, “Because you have seen me, you have believed; blessed are those who have not seen and yet believe” (John 20:29; NIV).

These three remain: faith, hope and love. But the greatest of these is love (1 Corinthians 13:13; NIV).

The dust returns to the ground it came from, and the spirit returns to God who gave it (Ecclesiastes 12:7; NIV).

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Breast cancer, mastectomy,, honesty, prayer, healing, contemplation, oneness, love,

Live in hope

 

Hello everyone, I’m just home from hospital. Still pretty sedated and absolutely exhausted, but very glad to be here. More comfortable without wound drain and cannula. My love to you all XXXXXX

 

Lord,
When we stop trying
To be something
We are not,
And start accepting
All of what we are,
Then we begin
To live in hope,
With you.

When we stop longing
To be something
We are not,
And start accepting
All of what we are,
Then we begin
To live in peace,
With you.

When we stop dying
To be something
We are not,
And start accepting
All of what we are,
Then we begin
To live in love,
With you.

 

References

How long must I struggle with anguish in my soul, with sorrow in my heart every day? (Psalm 13:2; NLT).

My body also will live in hope (Acts 2:26; NET).

All who listen to me will live in peace (Proverbs 1:33; NLT).

All who live in love live in God, and God lives in them (1 John 4:16; NLT).

 

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Prayer, suffering, life, courage, help, bear, illness, mental, physical,

A single, flimsy thread

 

A single, flimsy thread of faith
Will guide us through our sorrows, 
Back to you;

A single, fragile strand of hope
Will lead us through our wastelands,
Back to you;

A single, fraying filament of love
Will bring us through our dying, 
Back to you;

For these weak fibres form a threefold cord, 
Which binds us to your heart forever, Lord.

 

References

Three things will last forever – faith, hope and love (1 Corinthians 13:13; NLT.

Here on earth you will have many trials and sorrows (John 16:33; NLT).

I will lead her into the desert and speak tenderly to her there (Hosea 2:14; NLT).

Though I walk in the valley of the shadow of death, I will fear no evil: for thou art with me (Psalm 23:4; KJV).

The dust returns to the ground it came from, and the spirit returns to God who gave it (Ecclesiastes 12:7; NIV).

A cord of three strands is not quickly broken (Ecclesiastes 4:12; NIV).

He will carry the lambs in his arms, holding them close to his heart (Isaiah 40:11; NLT).

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Prayer, spiritual development, personal growth, faith, exploration, wholeness,

Your great gift

 

Even the faith which saves us all
Is your great gift
To us.

Even the grace of forgiveness, Lord,
Is your great gift
To us.

Even your Holy Spirit, Lord,
Is your great gift 
To us.

Even your peace of heart and mind 
Is your great gift
To us.

Even what righteousness we have
Is your great gift
To us.

And even the hope of eternal life 
Is your great gift
To us. 

 

References

God saved you by his grace when you believed. And you can’t take credit for this; it is a gift from God (Ephesians 2:8; NLT).

Even greater is God’s […] gift of forgiveness (Romans 4:16; NLT).

You will receive the gift of the Holy Spirit (Acts 2:38; NLT).

I am leaving you with a gift – peace of mind and heart (John 14:27; NIV).

Even greater is God’s […] gift of righteousness (Romans 5:17; NLT).

The free gift of God is eternal life through Christ Jesus our Lord (Romans 6:23;  NLT).

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Prayer, suffering, life, courage, help, bear, illness, mental, physical,

You fill my heart

 

Lord, 
You fill my heart with faith,
Despite my trials and sorrows –
The gift of your baptising Holy Spirit. 

Lord, 
You fill my heart with hope,
Despite my blows and burdens –
The gift of your inspiring Holy Spirit.  

 Lord,
You fill my heart with joy,
Despite my sins and failures –  
The gift of your anointing Holy Spirit.

Lord,
You fill my heart with love,
Despite my griefs and troubles –
The fruit of your indwelling Holy Spirit.

 

References

It is by grace you have been saved, through faith – and this is not from yourselves, it is the gift of God (Ephesians 2:8; NIV).

Here on earth you will have many trials and sorrows (John 16:33; NLT).

He will baptise you with the Holy Spirit (Mark 1:8; NLT).

You alone are my hope (Psalm 71:5; NLT).

You will receive the gift of the Holy Spirit (Acts 2:38; NLT).

Our hearts ache, but we always have joy (2 Corinthians 6:10; NLT).

The fruit of the Spirit is love (Galatians 5:22; NIV).

God anointed Jesus of Nazareth with the Holy Spirit (Acts 10:38; NLT).

You have received the Holy Spirit, and he lives within you (1 John 2:27; NLT).

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