I’ve said this before, but it still haunts me. The idea of a soul is allusive. One time when I was caring for my husband (who was ungrateful and whatever I did, or whatever I sacrificed in any of our years of marriage was never enough), I heard a voice. Not audible, but very real and it said, “You have to do something, or I’m going to die.” I knew this message was not from my husband who was in fact dying and it wasn’t about my husband. This week, almost ten years later I think I know precisely who or what was speaking to me.
Save My Soul
I feel sure it was my soul that was near death and calling out to me for its life. But why have I just now understood that?
This past weekend I attended the memorial service of a friend. His wife is a terrific friend of mine, so I know she also had sacrificed a lot for him, and he too was ungrateful for all she did. She looked at me as tears welled in her eyes and said she would call me sometime because she knew I understood. I do.
It’s Not Just My Story
I have had flashbacks in the last year of the many things my former husband did to shame me in front of family and friends, the many times I attended affairs with him, and no one acknowledged me or cared to, and part of my soul died. All the times I gave up my dreams to help him realize his dreams. The worse part is that I gave up being the mother I wanted to be to my son to be the mother he wanted me to be to his children who had mothers. I don’t want to go on about my miserable decisions and how I let myself be used. I only want to share enough that you can relate to my story.
This week it all came to a head. Although I have moved forward, I am well aware something is still wrong. Many who know me tell me I am so blessed right now. I have a simple home on a reasonably quiet lake, a good, supportive husband who is a wonderful Christian man, we have the things we need and some things we want. Life is good. Even with all of these blessings I know inside, something is missing or wrong.
When my former husband died, I was relieved. I hate to say it, but I was. There are so many things that need to be done after death that I didn’t have time to think of much else nor to listen to inner voices or whatever it is that nags at us until we still ourselves to hear. Not too long after things were settled with my husband’s estate, I moved to a new house, met my next husband (although I didn’t see that happening since I was done with marriage), and then a whirlwind of activities brought me to where I am today.
And what I know today is that my soul which was once on the edge of death is still there, holding on for dear life for me to take notice. This week after my friend’s tearful look, I took a look at my own soul. And I saw what was nagging me and haunting me. It was my damaged soul begging for attention. I had been feeding it daily during times of Bible meditation and prayer, but I had not given it my attention, not even enough to see its condition. It was still dying and taking what makes me happy with it. I’m not fun to be around. I rarely laugh, and I never cry. I am numb. I know I am blessed with all I have to enjoy, but I don’t enjoy it, I just accept it. I am caring, and I have ministries and friends, but I am aware that I am not what I should be,
He Restores My Soul
Monday of this week I prayed that God would restore my soul and create a clean heart and renew a right spirit in me. He did! Of course, I don’t know what to do with any of that because I have been striving for so long that I forget how to rest in God. How to be still and know God is God and cares for me. So this week has been interesting trying to listen to my soul or trying to nurture it. I’m not sure what I’m supposed to do with this restored soul. How do I let it express itself? How do I nurture it?
What About You?
The journey of living with a restored soul will take a while to understand or see the direction I should go with it. This is my journey now. I took my creative self on an artists date yesterday. Before you start wondering what institute I escaped from—hearing voices and taking my creative self on a date, I read about doing this if you are an artist of any form, and I am a writer, so……
It took about twenty-eight years to bring my soul to near death; I’m sure it will take some time to know how to live in relationship to it again. I saw a picture of myself 28 years ago, and I was smiling and laughing, and I want that person back. Come with me on this journey. How is the health of your soul? How are you nurturing it and helping it thrive? Do you give it expression?