A blank page is often black and full of clouds. And when the veil of watery voices rolls across the moon like a dark tide, the writer in me struggles toward the light.
But the fog is thick and filmy, and there is no speaking or writing in its haze. A pale glow sinks, or settles, far beyond the margins, drowning out any light with negative self-talk, shadowy and opaque.
Telling me that I’m trapped. Not good enough. Even guilty.
At times, though, there is a pause between voices, and a light rises to the surface. I stretch out my hand toward the light. But then it’s gone, hidden beneath the smoky film of voices playing in my head.
These clouds aren’t distant or ephemeral. They do work, down here, like one-edged razor blades of carbon steel, rasping at my heart. They prompt me to move like a matchstick and strike across my own expanse of scars.
And while listening to the ceaseless scratching, I lose my head from too much trying. Until my heart is bare, dark and cold. And beating like a moonless sheet of November sky.
But this I know: Something still can move. And I will not sink.
Like the moon.
No more listening to the stringy syntax of wrong voices. They coil about the heart like wiry cords, pressing into the skin with the weight of blades.
I know His promises shine brighter. They help me to walk across this dangerous depth. Like Peter, I find them during my times of stumbling across dark seeing. I discover their truth as I meet with You, even amidst my dark and stormy page.
And He said, “Come!” And Peter got out of the boat, and walked on the water and came toward Jesus. But seeing the wind, he became frightened, and beginning to sink, he cried out, “Lord, save me!” Immediately Jesus stretched out His hand and took hold of him, and said to him, “You of little faith, why did you doubt?” (Matthew 14:29-31 NASB)
Peter must have despaired of a lost moon, too. Sinking in his own strength, he learned that he couldn’t stay afloat. He couldn’t walk — or write — on water. This was an impossible movement. On his own.
But I find Your light, here, standing still:
He heals the broken-hearted
And binds up their wounds. (Psalm 147:3 NASB)
These words steady me and keep me still. Even as I go under.
Because He binds me up, with a strong and outstretched hand.