Category Archives: SIR JAMES

SATURDAY GRATITUDEs #4

You can read part #1 HERE

Part #2 HERE Part #3 HERE

There’s this guy that likes to live in my head. In AA they call him “The Committee of one” I call him Sir James. I introduced y’all to him HERE. And HERE

One of the favorite tricks of Sir James is to get me to Compare. I’ve said it before, and I come to believe it more as time passes: 

Comparison is a Thief of Joy! 

AND Gratitude. 

Comparison is such a part of our natural way. It’s what makes us feel better (or worse) than others. It’s what drives us to build bigger, buy more, to plan ahead for greater tomorrows. It’s also a huge part of the reason I occasionally find myself in a pit. Fortunately, not as often nor as deep as in past times. 

I doubt that I have ever felt grateful because of comparison. Oh, I’d be glad that didn’t have “problems like other people.” But, I’ve discovered that feeling was usually based more on PRIDE than GRATITUDE. The major problem with being glad you have a better life than someone else is because none of us are at the top. There’s always someone else that’s “glad they don’t have a life/troubles like mine”. 

So… How/Why am I grateful? To a large degree, it’s a matter of choice. It’s a choice that I can CHOOSE to make. I do not have to listen to The  Voice of Sir James.  

My friend Matt once told me: “Jim, you need to write a book about Sir James, because EVERYBODY has a Sir James in their life.”

Q for YOU – What’s the name of the man / woman that lives in YOUR head? Does {S}He bring you to a place of peace and gratitude? 

This prayer is one of the thngs that helps me cope with Sir James:

The Serenity Prayer

God grant me the serenity to accept the things I cannot change; courage to change the things I can; and wisdom to know the difference. 

Living one day at a time; Enjoying one moment at a time; Accepting hardships as the pathway to peace; Taking, as Jesus did, this sinful world as it is, not as I would have it; Trusting that He will make all things right if I surrender to His Will; That I may be reasonably happy in this life and supremely happy with Him Forever in the next. Amen


New Beginnings (?)

How do I get from HERE to THERE?
How did I get HERE?

I am a WRITER!
But… I’m not writing

I have a gift for sharing, One – on – One
But… I’m isolating

I’m very task – oriented
But… @ What Price?

I have SO MUCH to do
But… why don’t I, why won’t I – ask for help!?

I THINK‘n THINK‘n THINKn THINK!n TH
In (stormy) circles, getting nowhere

I enjoy being generous‘n sharing with others…
So… why am I feeling so alone?

I believe in BABY STEPs
So… why am I (do I seem to be) frozen in place?

I’m a BLOGGER
Who has stopped blogging!

I KNOW!!! GOD Loves me!!!!
Why does He seem to be in the other room?
With the door closed?

S I R    J A M E S !!!
U sneaky, hiding, lying-in-wait-for-me-
T E R R O R I S T !!

I thought U’d been defeated!
I stopped watching for Ur tricks…
It had been so long since I’d heard from U!
I didn’t recognize U when U snuck up on me!
AGAIN!!!

Hmmm, Maybe, Just Maybe,
“THERE”
Is much closer than I thought!!

T O D A Y ...
A New Year? Yes,
A New Beginning?
NO, Just another Baby Step
And learning (once again) to listen to
The Right Voice!

Continue reading

HIS Mysterious Ways

“Embrace Ur problem?”
“Nickname Ur problem?”
“Make friends with them?”
“Thank God for Ur problems?”
Say what?!? Yeah, it works… The name of my biggest problem was/is SIR JAMES!

U can read about him here: and here:

I don’t normally share the wisdom of others on my blog.
(hmmm, RU trying to tell me something. Lord?)
But today’s words by Sarah Young beg to be shared. I’m amazed at how it fits into some of the lessons I’ve had from God! I sure wish I’d learned it by listening to people like her instead of the way God had to teach me.
But, then, I blame SIR JAMES for that!!
Too bad he’s me!
**********

 

 

Today’s – Jesus Calling:

March 5
by Sarah Young
(boldtype mine)

 

Make friends with the problems in your life. Though many things feel random and wrong, remember that I am sovereign over everything. I can fit everything into a pattern for good, but only to the extent that you trust Me. Every problem can teach you something, transforming you little by little into the masterpiece I created you to be. The very same problem can become a stumbling block over which you fall, if you react with distrust and defiance. The choice is up to you, and you will have to choose many times each day whether to trust Me or defy Me.

 

The best way to befriend your problems is to thank Me for them. This simple act opens your mind to the possibility of benefits flowing from your difficulties. You can even give persistent problems nicknames, helping you to approach them with familiarity rather than with dread. The next step is to introduce them to Me, enabling Me to embrace them in My loving Presence. I will not necessarily remove your problems, but My wisdom is sufficient to bring good out of every one of them.

 

We are assured and know that [God being a partner in their labor] all things work together and are [fitting into a plan] for good to and for those who love God and are called according to [His] design and purpose.

—Romans 8:28 amp

 

But we preach Christ crucified: a stumbling block to Jews and foolishness to Gentiles, but to those whom God has called, both Jews and Greeks, Christ the power of God and the wisdom of God.

—1 Corinthians 1:23–24


Now read this post: 

HIS Tapestry

4976tap Tapestry

Contemplative Monday Mrng

Up since 5:35. Why, Oh – Why is it easier to get up early now than when I was working and HAD to? #BeenRetired5years

But that’s not the REAL Q I’m contemplating this morning.

I was scheduled to have two guys from Teen Challenge here this morning to help work on the addition to our house. I called and postponed till Wed or Thur. I just need to be quiet today.

TC@house2

In the past , I’ve been wary of days like this. Because my thoughts would veer off into undesirable paths. Not necessarily evil paths. (well, sometimes) but unhealthy avenues. At times like this I’d pull a tool out of my “backpack”. And use it to be hard on myself.

So I called and postponed until Wednesday. I need a quiet day. Yeah, that may be a bit difficult with the TWINZ on holiday. lol. Maybe we’ll all go on a picnic. But I digress…

If you read my post from Tuesday, U’ll remember the Q – “What’s Next“?

Yesterday at New Life Church, Celebrate Recovery was the featured ministry of the weekend. Pastor Doug shared a special recovery-centered message. CR had the center tent on the patio.

I made a point of standing behind the table for all 5 services. What a privilege to speak with some as they came up. Conversations with others behind the table in the lull moments was humbling. But it was where I was s’pose to be, doing what I was doing.

So – again, I ask – What’s next? For some time now, I’ve sensed that the audience of my blog is to be the Brokens. Those who have, as CR calls them, Hurts, Habits ‘n Hangups.

But how do I get from Here to There?

So it’s now 6:33 PM. I’m on my way to CR and have been contemplating this all day. D’ya know what I’ve figured out? NOTHIN’! Not one bloomin’ thing!

Except – I remembered the post from yesterday. The one called From There to Here. He reminded me. Him. The One who heals me. He asked me what I did to get from There to Here. From that brokenness to this place of healing. Do you know what I came up with? NOTHIN’! In fact, I STOPPED doing a whole lotta stuff I thought was keeping Him happy with me.

Then He had a suggestion for me. He suggested why don’t I do the same thing now. He said that I usually just get in His way. He said things would go a lot better if I would just relax and let HIM do it. He also suggested that I pay attention to see what happens. I might be surprised. He promised to let me know if He needs me. I can hardly wait!

Take a guess at what Sir James thinks about that. If you’re new and you don’t know who Sir James is you can read about him here. Sir James doesn’t like it when he doesn’t get his way!!

It’s now 6:45. I think I’ll go in to Celebrate Recovery and worship for a while and leave all this other stuff up to HIM

Oh, BTW – we did go on the picnic with the TWINZ.

 

#20/21 day challenge

Hotel EGO

My understanding of God’s work in me has almost always been in hindsight. What He’s doing in me TODAY I will understand tomorrow, next week, next years.

And if I don’t, that’s OK, too! I don’t have to, ’cause HE does!

Sometimes(usually?) I strive to understand God’s way in, for ‘n thru me because it satisfies my insatiable ego.

God’n my ego are not best friends. That seems strange to me. ‘Cause they’re roommates. They both live in me.

Ah.Ha! Maybe THAT explains some of the turmoil that happens inside this hotel I call my mind.

The rooms of my mind can be a dangerous place for me to stay. I’m learning not to go there by myself. That’s why I need U! That’s why U need me. We need to be a safe place one for another.

SIR JAMES

         December 26, 2013   Christmas Day+1

I had a brief battle with SIR JAMES yesterday morning.
Was it Post-Christmas Blues? Maybe
Was it unfulfilled expectations? Perhaps.
Was it too much excitement yesterday for an old man? Who, Me?
Was it two super-excited, hyperactive twin 10yr old grandsons? NAH!!!

It was SIR JAMES back at work in my mind, up to his old tricks again!
Allow me a few minutes this morning to introduce you to SIR JAMES.

Several months ago, I was standing in the kitchen at our church.
I could let you stand in the footprints where this moment was imprinted on my soul.

A man walked through the door and said: “Good Morning, SIR JAMES. How are you?”
I don’t remember my reply, but I remember what my thoughts were:

“Hmmm, I don’t think I remember ever being called SIR JAMES before.”
Somehow, I knew this name was going to become significant for me.

I’ve been called lots of different names in my life. I was born with “JIMMY” (My oldest sister – to this day…)   Another sister calls me “JAY-BIRD”. I have no idea where that came from. My friend Carolyn calls me “JIM-BO”. My Dad’s nickname for me was “JIM JOHNSON”. When I was working for a living, I was “CAT” – from my last name. One of my co-workers even had a phone that meowed when I called.

Most names I’m called now are terms of warmth and endearment.  It wasn’t always like this. Some names are recalled with less fondness – Jr High School. Playground bullies. My full name when Mom needed to REALLY get my attention.

As the next few weeks after this greeting in the kitchen went by, I began to understand who SIR JAMES is in my life. I now refer to him as my “abusive twin brother”. He lives in my head, he sleeps in my bed. I brush his teeth every morning. I used to comb his hair. (It fell out before it turned gray) He knows everything I ever did and somehow, he remembers it more than I do.

On second thought, he doesn’t remember it more – he remembers it differently.

He remembers the PAIN
He remembers the FEAR
He remembers the HURT, the ANGRY WORDs
He remembers NOT hearing the UNSAID WORDs I needed
He remembers that which I want to forget!
He keeps reminding me, every chance I give him.

In the few weeks that followed that Tuesday morning in the church kitchen, I began to recognize the Voice of SIR JAMES. I began to understand his intent. I came to see the patterns of speech he used. I came to know some of his favorite words. Words like “If Only you hadn’t…”  “Remember When you did…”  He’s Better at that than…”You Should’a…” and, of course, ‘You Shouldn’t ‘of…”

As the days unfolded, I began to be able to pay less attention to him. I discovered SIR JAMES had this annoying habit of waking up every morning a moment before I did.  He’d begin with a whispered reminder of yesterday’s disappointment, of last month’s hurt. Of that time last year when I ______fillintheblank  He’d recall the memories of an 11 year old 6th grade boy who’s teacher shamed and blamed him in front of his classmates.

In those few weeks, I discovered the futility of arguing with him. What words can be used in order to argue TRUTH? SIR JAMES never needed to lie to me. We both know the truth. I would not have listened if he had lied. He was simply using the dark side of the truth. It was meant to discourage me, to ultimately destroy me.

Some would call these thoughts the Voice of Satan. Perhaps it was. Perhaps it is. But – all my life, I’ve been told – “Satan Lies.” These weren’t lies. The power these thoughts have in my life is because of the TRUTH of them.

One of the first victories came when I stopped lying in bed listening to him. I had to stop talking back. I established a new morning routine: …Wake up. Get Up.(now) Put on robe’n slippers. Walk to kitchen. Start coffee. (answer nature’s call) Walk in family room. Turn on aquarium light. Turn on the soft light over my favorite Thomas Kinkaid picture. Start the gas log. Flip on coffee warmer.  Return to kitchen for coffee. Sit down in my morning chair, The Place I reserve for this morning time.

Somehow, somewhere between my bed’n my morning place, he goes away.
He won’t follow. I found out he doesn’t like this quiet place where I meet with God.

Q4U – What’s the name of the person that sleeps in Ur head?