Sunday, June 23, 2013

Creating a New Frame of Reference

You all know how I work. I read something or I hear something, and my mind starts spinning a mile a minute and I have to get it out. This morning is another one of those times, so bear with me.

I was reading a blog and someone had written a guest post sharing a precious story about her 6 year old daughter requesting that her mom play the song Daylight by Maroon 5 saying that it was her favourite song, and then shared her interpretation of that song. She didn't like the morning because that mean she had to go to school, but she loved nighttime when her mom would tuck her in and snuggle with her.

Children make sense of their world by using their experience as a frame of reference. The nightly tuck-in routine became this six year old girl's point of reference - her source of comfort, her go-to place.

Of course, with my introspective nature, my mind is spiralling thinking about what I've used as my point of reference, and what I would like my frame of reference to be from here on out.

The first thing that pops into my mind when I think "Point of Reference" is my eating disorder. It's what I've used as a source of comfort for years. It provided me with a sense of security, and a feeling that I could actually be good at something. When things would get rough and scary in the real world, I'd retreat back to the familiar comforts of restricting, overexercising, and binging and purging. Even in treatment, I refused to fully release my grip on the eating disorder, because I still wanted it to be there as my Plan B.

My life experience has essentially consisted of long periods of disorder and chaos with short periods of respite. I've lived my life waiting for the other shoe to drop, because it always does. Something always happens, and I crumble. This has been my frame of reference - my experience.

Now, it begs the question, what do I want my frame of reference to be?

I want to create a new frame of reference - a new set of experiences - that point me in the direction of life. I want to live based on a framework of love, security, and peace that comes from the Holy Spirit. Instead of allowing circumstances and situations to pull the rug out from under me, I want to be consistent - falling on my knees in worship. The Lord is my Deliverer. He is my Provider, my Shelter, my Strong Tower - and I want HIM to be my point of reference.

I want HIM to be what I measure my life experience against and base my actions around.

Practically, I've been thinking about what this looks like - and I think that it's just going to take practice, a lot of perspective shifts, and even more grace.

Firstly, I need to surrender my Plan B. This needs to happen, because as long as I'm holding on to the possibility of relapse, I'm preventing myself from experiencing the abundant life that comes when a life is fully committed to the things of God.

Second, I need to allow myself to try things that I've never done before because I've been afraid of the outcome. What is there to fear when God is on my side?

Third, I need to get my priorities straight. When I'm focused on myself and the things that I have to/can't do, I'm neglecting the big picture things. I need to prioritize early bedtimes so that I'm able to wake up early enough to start my day off right - dedicating my day to God. This month has been tremendously great in terms of quiet times. I'm going to sleep at 10pm and waking up at 7am, and I'm well-rested and alert and enjoying starting my day off with my Bible, my journal, and the Holy Spirit.

And finally, I need to continue to let other people speak life to me. I was not created to do life on my own, and I'm doing really good at seeking out accountability and being authentic with them. I'm actually really proud of how far I've come in this area.

So, all this to say, a paradigm shift is on it's way.

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