Scripture: Mark 9:17-26
Communication is key! Revisiting the experience of the young boy in the text, he had a communication problem. Remember, in Mark 9:25 Jesus commanded a deaf and dumb spirit to come out of the boy. The deaf spirit prevented the boy from hearing and the dumb spirit prevented the boy from speaking. The essence of communication is captured in what we speak and what we hear, so can you see why this boy was bound without the ability to do either. This challenge is coupled with what I believe is a misdiagnosis by the father, who tells Jesus in verses 17-18, “Teacher, I brought You my son, who has a mute spirit. And wherever it seizes him”. Pay attention to the fact that the father only mentions a “mute spirit” and further demonstrates this point by using the singular form of “it”.
I had to learn these two lessons the hard way. First, communication is essential for external and internal purposes. One of my challenges has always been expressing how I feel because by nature I am a non-confrontational person and I try to accommodate everyone else often at the expense of my own well-being and sanity. I found it offensive that on an airplane you are instructed to put on your own oxygen mask before you assist others, until I found myself literally out of breath and feeling lifeless from helping so many other people without taking care of myself. Focus on learning how to express yourself and allowing yourself the grace to not feel guilty about it.
Second, I had to learn that a misdiagnosis can kill you. I thought the solution to what I was feeling was to work harder, beat myself up, make more convincing demonstrations and arguments to myself and everyone around me. But when it was all said and done, I had to learn to listen to my mind, body, emotions and feelings, but also develop the ability to express how I was feeling.
Journaling was essential to document everything that was going on in me and around me, so I knew how to take it to the Lord in prayer and open healthy lines of communication with myself and everyone around me! I’m far from perfect, but it is making a monumental difference and I pray it can do the same for you!
CPR Kit for the Soul:
- Centering Theme: Find a quiet place and the space to sit and start listening to your body, thoughts, emotions and feelings. Once you start listening, it is time to start writing what you heard so you can speak to yourself and others about how you really feel and what is really going on in you and with you.
- Prayer Topic: Focus your prayer on asking God how to learn to hear with a new set of ears anointed by God and the ability to articulate and communicate what you hear so spiritual liberation may be realized.
- Reflection Thought: How do I discover a healthy balance of listening and speaking to achieve a better balance of confrontation and accommodation in my relationships and life?
T3 Prayer Booster:
- Dear Lord, as You know me, help me to better know myself by learning to listen and act on what I hear. Help me to avoid the misdiagnosis of myself and others and to avoid being misdiagnosed by others . . .
- Lord, I ask that You through my prayer & fasting, meditation & reflection, help me to discern the difference between necessary confrontation and God led accommodation that I may be whole and healthy for Your service . . .
- Lord, reveal to me the appropriate timing and Spirit of God led language to better communicate with myself and others to avoid burn out, anxiety, and unnecessary stress . . .