Eclipse – A Poem

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Eclipse – A Poem

Two sides of a conflicting coin
Flip like faces in a dramatic act.
Two intricate and separate forces entangle
In a bitter struggle, leaving Earth cloaked in black.

How can such a powerful light
Be smothered by such a small, sinister hand?
A visceral visual of what evil can accomplish
When given the freedom to take root in the heart of man.

In a matter of seconds the cosmos is silenced
By the veil of darkness and death.
The yang captured beneath the yin’s net;
Hope and light suffocating and gasping for breath.

What once was so beautiful,
Shining in the sky’s endless sea,
Has now turned into a lifeless puppet,
Bound and animated by dark, dominating strings.

You were once a blazing beacon –
A fire of hope that lit up my nights.
But now, my once glorious sun,
You’ve laid down, surrendered, and given up the fight.

I only hope this is but an eclipse
And shortly you’ll come forth from hiding behind the moon.
For life is but a quick, short breath
And will not wait while you wallow woefully in your room.

Two opposite forces fight
In the face of the atmosphere;
The moon is not a worthy opponent
But kills all light when the sun hides in fear.

The moon hangs with no power,
But becomes master when the sun submits.
Defy the rebellion, do not yield to your captor.
Emerge as the victor in your heart’s eclipse.

-Poem Written by Justin Farley

photo credit: Lunar Eclipse via photopin (license)

Fortified

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These castle walls have been built
by the tears and pain of my own heart.
Each stone carefully constructed
and sealed in layers of mortar
to make sure there are no breaches,
that no enemy reaches my inner domain,
no intruder is able to sneak and slip between the cracks.
I’ve built these walls strong enough
to withstand any firepower that’s thrown at it,
thick enough to keep out sun, rain, sleet, or snow,
thick enough to protect me from cold or heat.
Yes, nestled behind my walls,
I’m as safe as any man can be.
But what began as a savior years ago,
has become my sentence,
shackled like a prisoner in my own cell.
I may have successfully cut the world
off from me, but in doing so
I also cut me off from the world.
I’ve fortified these walls every day for years,
making them stronger and stronger.
And each year I find myself unmoved
by the world’s attack on me.
But there’s a loneliness growing inside,
knowing that the things I built this castle
to keep out are the things I most desperately need.
You can protect yourself from heartache.
You can close yourself to the possibility of pain.
But as long you’re still breathing, you can never
build walls high enough to keep yourself from being human.
There isn’t a cave dark enough or an ocean deep enough
to hide yourself from the thing that follows you
wherever you go – your heart.


 

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The Winds of Grace and Truth

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God does not lie hidden in churches, does not remain enclosed in a secret tomb that only gets opened once a week.  He is the light that penetrates the clouds on a dreary day, the rain the falls down from the heavens, the beauty in the sound of a piano key being struck or the vibrato in a angelic voice.  God has no chains.  The only chains he has are the ones we try to shackle him in.  Open your hearts and your minds, find a dark, quiet room.  As the outside world whirls like a tornado, listen carefully to your heart.  Do you hear it speak?  Do you feel the warmth spreading through your soul?  This is the one that we try to confine to dwell only in churches.  This is the one we can only visualize living in a place far, far away called heaven.  But he humbled himself and lives among us.  The real chains we put him in are those of the mind.  We let the screams of the EGO drown out the whispers of the soul.  Before long, we can’t even hear the Spirit anymore…we’ve forgotten what he sounds like.  But the Spirit never sleeps and patiently awaits the day that we may tear down the walls that we have thrown him behind and allow him to take us on a journey through a life without limits – with both pain and joy, dark and light.  A life where we realize we are never alone.  A life where we realize that we haven’t put chains upon God, but upon ourselves.  We have allowed our fears and doubts to convince us that we are only men and women. We are sons and daughters of God! Fetch the key to your shackles and let your spirit flutter freely in the winds of grace and truth.

 


Photo Credit: maf04 via Compfight cc

Anxiety and Letting Go of Control

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I have struggled long and hard.  I have wrestled with anxiety through the depths of solitude and fought back harder than I ever thought possible.  But it hasn’t saved me.  In fact, it’s only made my fears worse and conditioned the fact that I am bound to my condition. 

There are many deep questions about life, questions that demand answers to the purpose of your very existence.  I’ve had unanswerable questions for as long as I can remember.  Many I’ve never really found answers to.  What is it that humans fear the most?  That which they don’t understand or can’t control.  The less control we have, the more we fear.  That has certainly been true in my life. 

Humans can only experience so much pain or fear before they come up with irrational ways to deal with their feelings.  For me, the hardest thing to accept about life is that I truly have no direct control over the length of my life.  Sure, there are things I can do to avoid danger or prevent disease, but in the end no one can stop death.  It seems for many people that’s a given, and they just accept that fact; well, I’ve never been able to.  I guess that’s why I have this thing called an anxiety disorder, and they don’t. 

Anyone that’s ever had a panic attack can attest to the absolute horror of it and being convinced that you are about to die.  No matter how many times you have one, you are never immune to the grip of fear.  At some point alone the way, I couldn’t stand feeling so helpless and vulnerable; I took control back, and it came at a steep price.  

For many years, anxiety was at least manageable.  But I began to pick up the habit of using irrational thoughts to protect myself from fear.  Subconsciously, I was telling myself that as long as I avoided places and situations that made me anxious, I would conquer fear.  And I guess to some extend that worked for a while.  I finally had a way to control the feelings that I hated, but soon my world got smaller and smaller; the simplest act of going to the grocery store felt like pure hell.  It took years for me to realize that the control I thought I had was actually just me accepting a sentence locked in solitude and cut off from society.  

I can’t live in peace without control and trying to pretend I have it sure as hell hasn’t worked, so what is the solution?  God.  What I need is consolation from my deep doubts about life and neither society nor myself is ever going to be able to give me answers to those questions.  Humans have been wrestling with the meaning of life and the fear of death since the beginning of time.  The last time I checked they still don’t know.  Science can give us insights and some guesses, but still leaves us unfulfilled.  The only person that can answer these questions is God.  

For me, a large portion of my anxiety is self-inflicted.  For too long I’ve been unwilling to turn my control over to God.  I want to believe that by using some delusional thinking, I can save myself.  In many ways, I’ve made myself my own God, and I’m failing miserably because I don’t have the power necessary to change myself.  As evident as it should have been, it has only been recently that I’ve really understood how much worse I’ve made my situation by trusting in myself instead of something greater than me.  

I could be alone in this, but I think that anyone who suffers from anxiety and panic attacks comes up with ways or things that they can do to feel like they have control over their emotions. I’m not talking about rational treatment techniques here.  It’s the irrational stuff- the things we’d be embarrassed to tell anyone else about that keeps us chained in fear.  The main feeling of anxiety is feeling like something is about to happen, and you have no control over it.  Strangely, I find the more of my life I let go of and turn over to God, the more in control I feel. 

 

photo credit: <a href=”https://www.flickr.com/photos/zedzap/3664704985/”>Nick Kenrick.</a> via <a href=”http://photopin.com”>photopin</a&gt; <a href=”http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-nc-sa/2.0/”>cc</a&gt;