Monday, February 01, 2010
Since having our daughter, we have dived deep into the realms of sleep deprivation. A time when emotions and thought processing is thrown out the window in the midst of feedings, crying, playing and visitors popping in to have a peek. In all of this we are very aware of intentionally fostering our relationship as husband and wife and walking in healthy ways with each other despite the deprivation of sleep and time with each other.
Deprivation however comes in varied forms and expressions. In the past, the deprivation of healthy same gender relating brought about the expression of sexual promiscuity. Seeking out someone to fill the void of what should have been instilled in me as I grew up.
The lack of healthy affirmation of my masculinity came with a deep sense of loss of what could have been. It came with shame, low self esteem and a need to find a definition of who I was.
In the past few months, my awareness of these issues has been heightened in new ways and the recognition and need for greater healing. Acknowledging my neediness and the deprivations knowing that I need Christ, and I hunger for him to fill and complete me.
This deprivation of sleep has awakening a revelation for me of what it means to be deprived of something that is so important and the ways we will seek to get that met. In terms of sleep? Well, I can't go to sleep at work, nor can I sleep while driving, or meeting with people, but I can stop and take time to grab a nap, or even admit my deprivation and say "I'm not coming in to work today, I have to get some sleep". Thankfully, I have a job that I can do that as I work plenty of overtime.
How do we though care for ourselves when deprived of our basic need, for love, affirmation, attention, affection? For years, due in part to gaps in these areas and abuse that happened to me, I had a deep hunger and need to fill the voids in my life. How did I cope? Through addictions, wearing masks, sex, materialism, food, drugs, being perfect, being in control. I did my best to portray an image that I'm okay, confident and secure, when in reality, I was a huge mess, desperate for love and acceptance.
Only in recognizing my deprivation and actually stopping my coping mechanisms, did I come face to face with my savior, Jesus Christ. Who allowed me to feel the depths of pain and loss, who met me and washed me and came in to those voids.
My Papa God affirmed me, called me forth, gave me endurance, confidence and restored my identity.
I see areas of deprivation in my life still, sleep being one of them, yet I know when I take the care that I need, when I stop doing, when I stop being, and just sit in the presence of Jesus, I am in good hands. It is giving up my control, trusting and knowing the my Father is good and loving...and that is all I need.