Monday, March 03, 2008

And Just Like That....

the funk was gone. Unfortunately it took the better part of the weekend, but finally early Sunday afternoon I was back to normal.

Carter and I went to dinner Friday night, trying Bound'ry per Citysearch's recommendations. I called ahead to make sure it served apple martinis. The menu was fun with tapas, tasting, and entree sized portions, and I liked the fireplace near our booth. I hoped the martini might help the mood, but I don't think it did. I did manage to keep pretty quiet, which is unusual for me. After dinner we went to Christ Cathedral to hear a variety of musicians perform some of Bach's work; one guy whistled "Ave Maria," and it was surprisingly good.

Saturday my self-centered funk seemed to escalate with my mind being filled about 60% of the time with negativity and criticism--pretty much all directed at Carter. It's only by the grace of God that the ugliness playing through my head didn't ooze out more than it did. Again I kept quiet, which created a tension of sorts, but it was much better than anything that would have come out of my mouth. Every other thing Carter did annoyed me. For example, I baked cookies, and he stood in the kitchen while I got started, and I was seriously irritated. And each irritation just led to me creating a longer list of his bad traits.

Crazy. You know how people talk about rose-colored glasses? It was like I had on black colored glasses and saw Carter through a hateful filter. Throughout the day there were times I would start to enjoy him like normal, and then bam he'd breath the wrong way and I'd snap back into hyper-critical mode.

Thankfully Carter was very patient, understanding, and seemed to roll with it all incredibly well. Saturday night I prayed that God would lift the black cloud off of my heart and that He would help me see His beauty in Carter. I prayed that I would seek God’s will in this relationship and not focus on my selfish and ugly desires. I prayed that the Spirit would fill me with love and compassion and guide me in all that I do. I had to make myself pray that when all I wanted to do was write pages and pages in my journal about what annoyed me about Carter. And yes, I realize this sounds straight-up ridiculous and crazy.

Despite strongly implying that I didn't want him to come, Carter showed up for the Sunday school class I lead, and then we attended church (at another church) together. The sermon was on being judgmental, which was perfect given how busy I'd been judging Carter. Condemning someone is so much easier than loving him, and it's completely opposite of the example set by Christ. Reading scripture, fellowship, and worship seemed to help my heart thaw, and by the time we were done with lunch, I was back to normal and so very glad to be with Carter. The rest of the day was fantastic, but I couldn't help but regret how much of the weekend was squandered by my funk. It's like I missed out on really being with Carter. Oh well, ten lovely hours are better than none. And I found something new to admire about Carter (his patience and understanding despite my irrational mood), and we had a really meaningful and emotionally honest (not my strong suit) conversation last night.

And today I've reflected on the entire funk situation, and it sort of scares me. It scares me that my perception could be colored so ugly. It saddens me that there have been times in my life that that sort of judgment may have been the rule rather than the exception. It scares me that sin can so easily fill me up to the point of completely coloring my thoughts and feelings.

But at the same time I have so much hope and gratitude. How awesome to see God's patience reflected in someone else. And how awe-inspiring it is to trust in God and rely on the Holy Spirit. And while sometimes life seems harder as a Christian, times like these remind me of how much I need a savior and how much I need grace--and how blessed I am to have both in Christ Jesus.

p.s. I'm thankful for you guys. Your prayers, comments, encouragement, and e-mails really helped me.

16 comments:

Appletini said...

AMEN! :)
There is nothing else that I can add to this post :)

Scotty said...

Condemning someone is so much easier than loving
Imagine how different everything would be if the opposite were true.

Thomas said...

These "self-centered funks" are so annoying. I bet if we really knew what brought them on, they would dissipate a lot quicker.

Ys said...

i'm so glad you're feeling better and that you got to enjoy most of sunday funk-free :)

cdp said...

I've been meaning to come back and comment on your last post. I wanted to tell you that I've been in that funk, too. i think the reason I didn't make a point of commenting is because I didn't want to think more about my own funk, which is heinously selfish, but true.

I love learning about how other people pray. I don't know why, but I totally do. I always try to take something with me from hearing about the things others pray for and the way they speak to God.

At any rate, I am way glad to hear you are feeling better. And I definitely relate to the black colored glasses. I have developed a tendency lately to NOT keep my negative energy from oozing out into my relationship with Mark. It's hard.

I think what we need, Allyjax, is spring. And it seems to be well on its way. Sunshine will help, I think.

icadle said...

On such a rainy day, which has a tendancy to put me in a funk, that was a great post.

thank you for sharing!

AaroN said...

I knew a little prayer would help clean that bit up. Did you pray with Carter?

This subject amazingly touched upon a subject in one of the books I'm studying right now. I only wish I had it handy so I could copy a paragraph written on the topic.

Basically, the premise is that these thoughts/feelings/opinions that we form aren't of our own doing -- but are suggestions placed into our minds by Satan to bring chaos into our relationships with others. Carter certainly could have been susceptiable to your attitude and this could have been a (bad) turning point in your relationship. Thankfully, he hung in there and you moved passed this. And for that, you've only served to strengthen your relationship.

Ally said...

cdp: I love hearing other people's prayers too. It's such a sweet way to know what is on someone's heart, and I love how everyone prays so differently.

Aaron: Carter and I did pray together but not until Sunday night. We should have prayed together sooner, but I was definitely not there--but should have anyway. I think that during this funk Carter found comfort in our shared faith--that we're seeking the same God. I'm curious about this book; I'll write you for more info. Thanks.

ella said...

I think God has brought you the perfect man. ;)

Pete Wilson said...

thanks so much for the painfully honest post. I find myself wrestling with similar thoughts and feelings toward others all the time. I needed to read this.

Clearlykels said...

I'm so glad you are out of your funk. I did find solace that we were in our funks at the same time and were able to share our little ways to get out of them. Also, I LOVED the link you sent me.

cdp said...

see my comment section re. inquiring minds

;-)

brandy said...

I'm glad you are feeling better. Your line about being scared about how your perception could be so colored was one I can relate to. Once I'm out of my funk, I'm terrified looking back and seeing just how funky I got.

And yes, I realize I could have used a different word but I thought 'funky' was just too funny not to use. Have a great Monday Ally!

kathrynthomas said...

i laughed when i read this post - not because it's all that funny, yet because i know exactly what you mean. been there done that, to say.

i thought a lot about honesty and relationships this week - which i may or may not post on soon enough - yet my thoughts always bring me back to this idea that the person we choose to be with has to be someone with whom we can completely be ourselves. this includes good moods and bad.

i'm glad to hear that carter is full of patience, and the latter half of your weekend went well. :)

allbilly said...

does living in nashvegas make you want to quote old country songs alot? ? like that "rose colored glases" song"? If i lived there...i would...

Ally said...

Billy--I'm not sure I know enough old country songs to quote many....but I can totally see you doing that:)