There are times when the body and mind are so weak and weary we need to soothe our hearts with light easy reads. Nothing heavy, nothing super intellectual, or challenging. Just simple goodness wrapped up in a favorite book with a puppy nearby and some lavendar tea. Sounds pretty good, huh?
When I was in phase two of my recovery, and no longer bedridden, but chair ridden, I stumbled upon my set of Mitford series that I hadn’t read in years.
As I traversed the pages of the delightful story of an Episcopalian Priest who lived for God and helping others through service, something magical happened. My mind shifted focus from the hard experience I was living in to the everday life of the small town folk of Mitford. I had light, happy, interesting things to entertain me, yet not too heavy for my struggling brain to process. It was a sunny little resort from the hard and broken to a mind more at ease and peace.
Sometimes light, simple, beautiful, peaceful thoughts are very healing to the mind and can bring healing especially with chronic illness or injury.
In Phillipians 4:8-9 God tells us what to think on, what to dwell on, and what to fill our minds with.
Philippians 4:8-9 King James Version
8 Finally, brethren, whatsoever things are true, whatsoever things are honest, whatsoever things are just, whatsoever things are pure, whatsoever things are lovely, whatsoever things are of good report; if there be any virtue, and if there be any praise, think on these things.
9 Those things, which ye have both learned, and received, and heard, and seen in me, do: and the God of peace shall be with you.
Filling my mind with peaceful, happy and restful thoughts has been a step in my healing process. Reading the Mitford books, looking at art, beauty, birds, flowers, and dwelling on thoughts of God are so very healing to my mind, body and spirit.
Here’s a glimpse of the fun, typical Mitford bantor from Jan Karon’s Mitford book called Light From Heaven:
“Three,” said Willie Mullis.
Willie stood at the kitchen door, bareheaded and mournful, holding forth a battered fedora containing the day’s egg inventory.
“Three’s all we need,” said Father Tim, reaching into the hat. “We thank you. Think the laying will pick up come spring?”
“Good! Think we’ll be having any more snow?”
“Your arthritis coming along a little better?”
“Looks like a nice, warm day. The temperature could soar into the high sixties, don’t you think?”
“Need any help at the barn?”
“If you do, just give me a call.”
He (Father Tim) put the brown eggs into a bowl on the table, observing them with satisfaction. With a little grated cheese, a tot of cream, a smidgen of onion. . .
“Was that Willie?” asked his wife, coming into the kitchen.
“Three eggs,” he said, pointing. “The laying will, of course, pick up come spring; we won’t be having any more snow; the temperature will probably be in the high sixties today; and his arthritis is improving.”
“My goodness,” she said, “I never get that sort of information from Willie. He’s a perfect chatterbox with you.”
Having read this delightfully fun book series was a great way to heal for me. My fifteen-year-old also enjoyed reading the books recently. She devoured all 13 books in 9 days (we don’t yet own the 14th)! I highly recommend finding the series if you haven’t already or maybe re-reading them again like I did. They are fun, light, and full of Biblical truths that actually run deep. And they, as my daughter would say, are “awesome!”
Reading scripture verses, and journaling has also become quite healing, as well as writing with a pen which heals my motor skills by working my right hand left brain connection.
Setting our thoughts on what is pure, lovely, noble, and true is an active exercise in and of itself to battle off negativity, anger, and other emotions which only stifle our joy and bring sorrow.
It’s amazing because in verse 9 of Phillipians 4, God says it will bring peace. How lovely! Just think, God whispers to us in His word, “think on THESE things.”
Mindfulness is a struggle for me. Fighting off all those negative thoughts that plague my broken brain is a battle. Yet, God is fighting, helping and working alongside to help guard my heart, mind and thoughts. He wants me to think on Him, His blessings, His truth and rest in His endless love.
His beauty is a wonderful thought to set my mind on each and every day.
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