Wednesday, June 10, 2009
On Friday we will have lived on this tiny farm for one year and in all that time (and even a tad longer) we'd not gone to see a movie in a theater. Some kind of record for Tom and myself, definitely.
So yesterday we traveled to our old haunts and watched Star Trek. Oh my, what a wild ride! I did close my eyes through various violent scenes, but enjoyed the movie overall, even feeling emotionally overwhelmed when (slight spoiler) three of the characters parachuted out of the Enterprise. The way it was filmed, it felt as though I had--insanely--parachuted out with them. Yikes! Tears came to my eyes the way they did when I stood before the Lincoln Monument. Maybe you know what I mean.
But speaking of emotions, perhaps that was my favorite part of the film--the way keeping ones emotions under control was a theme. Just sitting there in that theater, I recalled the myriad emotions I'd felt during the ten years' worth of movies I'd seen there. How I'd often worried if I'd left the iron on and was our house in flames at that moment? Or was someone breaking into our car out in the parking lot while we sat munching popcorn? Many emotions, many fears over the years, some silly, some not.
For me, I didn't really begin advancing in this life until I learned to control my emotions. The majority of my days did not, could not, become peaceful ones until I learned to obey not what I felt, but what I knew to be true.
And of course, I'm still learning. Learning to view Life from other peoples' eyes, rather than yell at them or snub them because they hurt me. And rather than not exercising because I don't feel like it, I'm learning to exercise because it's the right and healthy thing to do. Rather than only paying the bills when I feel up to it, I'm learning to pay them once a week... I'm learning to set limits to my spending, to spread out my purchases, rather than buying everything I think I need at this moment... I'm learning to not eat every time I feel very up or very down... or treat others badly because I feel cranky... or give-up when things become harder.
The 'dying to self' which the Bible speaks of really comes into play in this area. If I can let God change me, if I can allow Him to remove the garbage I've collected within me and replace it with His fruit of the Spirit, then my emotions will simmer down. Dead people don't stand up and start yelling at others. Dead people don't whine or cry or throw a fit when someone else gets what they (Mrs. Dead To Self) prayed for for years. Dead people don't overeat, cower in fear or collect a bunch of junk.
I've lived it both ways--Dead to Self and So Alive To Self It's Pathetic. And sometimes there are flare-ups when the old, dead Debra tries resurrecting her sorry self. But what I love are the days when Old Debra remains in her grave and New Creation In Christ Debra, instead, lives in amazing peace because her emotions are no longer dragging her around by the neck.
Ah, those are the best days of all.
"But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness and self-control. Against such things there is no law." ... Galations 5:22-23