1. treatment designed to rid the body of poisonous substances
DARK AGES & DRUGS OF DISTRACTION
If you haven’t been with me since day 1, I’ll briefly catch you up to speed… The Lord put this slightly-crazy, 30-day detox journey in my heart. So for the last several weeks, I haven’t eaten grains, dairy, or anything with unnatural preservatives/flavorings, etc. I’ve also been abstaining from social media (Instagram and Facebook to be exact) and limiting TV time (no more binge-watching and zero news cycles).
I feel like I’m in the dark ages. I am a caveman (cavewoman?) wandering around the empty lands. What are all of the people doing? Am I missing everything? What on God’s green earth did I do before social media? How did I spend my free time? How did I wait in a line without reaching for my phone?
For the love of milk and honey, I cannot recall.
Life before Instagram and Facebook and Netflix is a blurry wisp of a memory, but I suppose I did productive things like homework and talked to people in real life (Although I do vaguely remember watching the entire box seasons of Gilmore Girls over and over. I will never be ashamed of this).
To be honest, I have failed the point of this detox in some areas. Don’t get me wrong: I have not cheated once (I am a first-born, rule-following Pharisee), but there were some days that I missed the mark on the whole “be still and wait on the Lord” thing. (Hello, my long-lost friend, Pinterest. Ahh yes, I think I will re-read all of my favorite fiction books.)
Replacing my habitual drugs of choice with another numbing distraction was far from the plan. And goodness, the timing of this little adventure could not have been worse or more perfect. That may sound confusing, but God’s timing often works out that way, doesn’t it?
Satan’s attacks were relentless over this past month. All of my vulnerable spots were tested. I found myself crying all of the tears, feeling all of the hurts, and asking all of the questions. Where I normally would’ve turned to technology to ignore the hard things, I was forced to take an honest-to-goodness look at my soul. And I didn’t always love what I found there.
Praise God for grace. Even amidst all of my shortcomings, He shows up and loves me still. He is teaching me big things. Good and hard and beautiful things. My prayer list is growing longer because He is pointing all of the areas I’m holding onto with clenched fists.
I suppose that’s what it looks like to walk with the Lord, though. You release one area to Him and then He points out another. It’s almost annoying. And it’s fully liberating.
I’m on the home stretch now. I can see the beautiful, Instagram-filtered finish line. It seems to be covered in a mountain of cheese, although it’s possible I’m hallucinating at this point.
It’s a funny thing, really. I thought this detox was going to be a fight. I planned out my attack, put on my armor, picked up my weapons, prepared for battle. I readied my shield for the arrows and prepared my war cry.
And, after all these days, it turns out: this detox looks more like surrender. I am unclenching my fists and laying down my armor. I am giving away my weapons. I’m bringing out my white flag and waving it joyfully.
I’m boasting a mile-wide smile with outstretched arms—because He is in control of it all.
I'm always looking for sermon, podcast, and book recommendations, so I thought it might be helpful to share a few of my favorites from the past couple of weeks with y'all as well (and feel free to send any my way that you've been loving)!
This conversation between Louie Giglio, Ravi Zacharias, and Vince Vitale is so insightful and relevant. They are all so brilliant and wise--I can't even deal. I loved hearing bits of their testimonies and stories (Vince was an atheist in academia and Ravi was a suicide-attempter in India) while learning from their beautiful perspectives.
To read: Garden City by John Mark Comer
The subtitle of this book is "Work, Rest, and the Art of Being Human," which sums up the main discussions. While I don't agree with everything the author says (per usual), it's one of my favorite books I've read all year. It felt like God was speaking gentle reminders to me through the often-witty and gospel-filled words of John Mark:
“That’s why Sabbath is an expression of faith. Faith that there is a Creator and he’s good. We are his creation. This is his world. We live under his roof, drink his water, eat his food, breathe his oxygen. So on the Sabbath, we don’t just take a day off from work; we take a day off from toil. We give him all our fear and anxiety and stress and worry. We let go. We stop ruling and subduing, and we just be. We 'remember' our place in the universe. So that we never forget . . . There is a God, and I’m not him.”
To sing: Cages by Needtobreathe
You know when you listen to a song for the first time and it just hits you in all of the tender places? This was that song for me. (It's been on repeat over here.)
"We're a band of outsiders
Spend our whole lives chasin'
Trying to climb a little higher
But the high just faded
Went looking for attention
In all the wrong places
We were needin' a redemption
All we got was just cages"