Do you believe it’s possible to reach a place where there is no more fear, pain or worry, only stillness, quietness and a deep peace?
As I write this question even I wonder at its strangeness, but I have experienced this place at least three times. Before I go any further, I know this post is a long one and possibly challenging but I encourage you to read to the end because I believe that it will bless you.
The first time I was in my final year of university, in a place of deep depression and intense emotional pain. I cried so much that I was sick of it. I had tried counselling and anti-depressants, even one that kept me in the land of deep sleep for the majority of the day. I had tried all the churches on campus hoping to find God somewhere but all I found was man and more loneliness and sorrow. Only YHWH knows how I managed a Second Class Upper Honours degree in my state but I think a BIG part of it was this experience.
I can remember walking from where I lived to the main campus, there was a shortcut and a longer circuitous route through a little forest. That day the sky was blue and the sun was shining, there was hope in the air so I decided to take the forest route. As I walked I heard a bird chirping away, but the funny thing was (and this will sound funny) I felt like I could understand what the bird was saying. And as this awareness hit me, then I began to notice the leaves and the wind blowing through them as if it was speaking to me too. So I stopped and I looked up, and all of a sudden I was bathed in a ray of warm bright light and I felt such joy and peace – as if I was at one with everything and that God had given me a big hug. At that time I had no words in my vocabulary to describe it, but one word stood out to me ‘nirvana’ or bliss – all was still and quiet and everything was in its place.
Even though it was probably less than a minute, that experience has lasted much longer and it gave me an awareness of the possibility of something more. My second experience came about 4 years into desperately seeking for an answer to my strange health condition. At that time I was still trying to be fixed by alternative health practitioners, deliverance ministries and being referred from one medical specialist to another. This is another clear as day memory in my mind. I was finally going to get my MRI results and I eagerly walked into the doctor’s office hoping that he would have the key to understanding how to get better. His words to me that day were painful:
“There is nothing physically wrong with you that we can see.”
As soon as he said it I burst into tears, it was like a dam had opened. I knew you see, God had already told me that they would find nothing wrong, but I didn’t want to believe Him, I wanted to hold on to hope. I can remember standing outside on my phone telling Eke about the results and hyperventilating from all the panic and worry. That day I went home, closed the door, sat on my bed and felt myself being sucked into a never-ending vortex of the deepest, darkest fear and despair I had ever experienced. I could literally feel and see it in front of me, pulling me in and taunting me with no escape. There was no hope, no light, only this existence forever and ever – it was a glimpse of hell.
But as the walls of darkness engulfed me something else happened whether it came from within or without I don’t really know. But there was light and strength and most of all there was hope. Suddenly, I knew what I had to do, I had to stop thinking. This might sound strange because a) how do we stop thinking and b) we’re told by other Christians that an empty mind is a doorway to being inhabited by demonic spirits. I can safely say that the times when my mind has been inhabited by such is when my mind has been full of fear, pain and worry.
So here I was, in this space of not thinking, but simply being. I was fully aware, still going about my daily business but I had given all my thinking over to God. In fact, my mantra became “God, I can’t do this, you do it for me.” I gave every worry, every thought, every decision over to God and I noticed that every time I tried to pick them back up, and take control the dark vortex of panic and despair came back once again. Whilst I was there I experienced so much peace, but in essence, it was a stillness and quietness of mind free from worry, fear or pain – there was no thought of tomorrow only the present. I lived like this for about two weeks before I was allowed and able to start thinking for myself again and by then the pain and terror had gone. God had held me through a situation that would have tipped me over the edge, but instead, I was living constantly in His presence and I felt so, so safe and loved.
My last experience that I can remember is pretty recent, actually this weekend. Again, it’s come on the back of a season of intense distress. And once again, a simple knowing of what I had to do as I heard the Spirit whisper into my heart “just be still and know”. So I spent the majority of Sunday in stillness and quietness, uttering not a single word or allowing not a thought to cross my mind unless I had to. And once again, the stillness brought with it such a deep and profound peace and liberation of being until the pain, hurt and fear dissipated.
Adults carry so much noise. Our heads are just filled right up to the brim with the noise of worry and the cares of the world. When we were children it never used to be like that, children leave all the thinking and worry to their parents. This tells me a lot, it tells me that we don’t have to live like that, we have simply chosen to or forgotten how not to. Science shows us that the brain waves of adults and children are very different – adults spend most of their time in beta wave frequencies which are associated with working, over-thinking and worrying, whilst children naturally experience more alpha wave frequencies (relaxed, creative and CLEAR mind) and theta waves (spiritual connection, relaxation, healing and intuition).
Aren’t we called to be more child-like?
I used to believe it when people said that you shouldn’t “empty your mind” because it’s not godly, but I think it would be more helpful to ask, “What do you MEAN by emptying my mind?”
For example, when you pray and tell God about everything you are going through, do you cast your burdens at His feet and leave them there or do you take them back up as you’re leaving? Emptying your mind is simply the process of letting go of all the noise, all of the burden and the cares of the world you have been carrying and giving them over to the One who can. It’s allowing yourself to be child-like again and leaving all the heavy lifting and planning to your Father because you trust that you can. As a dear friend and sister says, it’s simple “bird-like” living. Coming to think about it, that bird I heard in my first experience was probably telling me just how simple it was to live in peace and joy.
Wouldn’t it feel like heaven to not have to carry all of that weight around anymore? To not have the noise screaming round and around in your head?
I actually think it’s the plan of the enemy to create this false belief around “emptying your mind”, this is a practice done all the time in monasteries and convents and even back in Yeshua’s day. The simple act of learning to let your thoughts go is what allows God into that space instead and I honestly think that is what the enemy is afraid of. Whilst you are bound up in fear, worry or pain he can keep you ineffective whilst he steals, kills and destroys.
YHWH offers us something more, Yeshua says to us,
“Fear not, little flock, for it is your Father’s good pleasure to give you the kingdom.” (Luke 12:32)
If this is something you desire for yourself and want to talk about it, don’t hesitate to contact me.
In His Shalom xxx