Posts Tagged ‘sponsors’


It is amazing how the stories in Judges can sooo illustrate Gremlin-Saboteur work. It is the challenge as I have written about many times, rooting into yourself for that voice (s) that are tearing you down. Acting as the invaders in the land that chapter 3 opens with:

Now these are the nations that the Lord left, to test Israel by them, that is, all in Israel who had not experienced all the wars in Canaan. It was only in order that the generations of the people of Israel might know war, to teach war to those who had not known it before. These are the nations: the five lords of the Philistines and all the Canaanites and the Sidonians and the Hivites who lived on Mount Lebanon, from Mount Baal-hermon as far as Lebo-hamath. They were for the testing of Israel, to know whether Israel would obey the commandments of the Lord, which he commanded their fathers by the hand of Moses. So the people of Israel lived among the Canaanites, the Hittites, the Amorites, the Perizzites, the Hivites, and the Jebusites. And their daughters they took to themselves for wives, and their own daughters they gave to their sons, and they served their gods

-Judges 3:1-6 (English Standard Version)

One can descend into an argument around the veracity and historicity of the stories in Judges. But when one is looking at post-exilic or during exile time, these ancient stories are there to reassure those in bondage that there is a way out. A pathway back to the Holy, it uses war language, because if they are historic it probably was war, if not, it is a metaphor that one understood in exorcising demons from yourself. The battle. The fact that your God is superior to the other God because, well, your nation one the war.

I point this as a story that speaks to the internal battle for wholeness and authenticity, because the enemy (demon) is named. Just like when we deny the Gremlin within us, we name it, we create its image, we write out the lies that it tells that we believed or did keep us safe, a thanksgiving for that period (an honouring and an honesty about what was truly happening); then making the decision to win the war, destroy the Gremlin.

In a way, in the short term work, what is seen is a life coach in the form of the short judge exercises in getting Israel back on track to their whole beings:

7 And the people of Israel did what was evil in the sight of the Lord. They forgot the Lord their God and served the Baals and the Asheroth.Therefore the anger of the Lord was kindled against Israel, and he sold them into the hand of Cushan-rishathaim king of Mesopotamia. And the people of Israel served Cushan-rishathaim eight years. But when the people of Israel cried out to the Lord, the Lord raised up a deliverer for the people of Israel, who saved them, Othniel the son of Kenaz, Caleb’s younger brother. 10 The Spirit of the Lord was upon him, and he judged Israel. He went out to war, and the Lord gave Cushan-rishathaim king of Mesopotamia into his hand. And his hand prevailed over Cushan-rishathaim. 11 So the land had rest forty years. Then Othniel the son of Kenaz died.

-Judges 3:7-11 (English Standard Version)

The coach was in. The coach was asking the powerful questions to seek out the true self. In this story, it is a battle to root out and destroy that which was holding back. In a coaching session, the powerful questions will help you drill down away from fluff, to what your actual goal may be, what you are actually seeking, or rooting out the Gremlin that is holding you back.

I also love, how it points out that there is a time when the work is happening, and there is peace. Peace does not always mean static, it means we are doing what is working for that time to keep us healthy and moving forward, but life is a long game and new experiences bring new challenges. Those new challenges bring new supports into our lives:

 And the people of Israel again did what was evil in the sight of the Lord, and the Lord strengthened Eglon the king of Moab against Israel, because they had done what was evil in the sight of the Lord. 13 He gathered to himself the Ammonites and the Amalekites, and went and defeated Israel. And they took possession of the city of palms. 14 And the people of Israel served Eglon the king of Moab eighteen years.

15 Then the people of Israel cried out to the Lord, and the Lord raised up for them a deliverer, Ehud, the son of Gera, the Benjaminite, a left-handed man. The people of Israel sent tribute by him to Eglon the king of Moab. 16 And Ehud made for himself a sword with two edges, a cubit[a]in length, and he bound it on his right thigh under his clothes. 17 And he presented the tribute to Eglon king of Moab. Now Eglon was a very fat man. 18 And when Ehud had finished presenting the tribute, he sent away the people who carried the tribute. 19 But he himself turned back at the idols near Gilgal and said, “I have a secret message for you, O king.” And he commanded, “Silence.” And all his attendants went out from his presence. 20 And Ehud came to him as he was sitting alone in his cool roof chamber. And Ehud said, “I have a message from God for you.” And he arose from his seat. 21 And Ehud reached with his left hand, took the sword from his right thigh, and thrust it into his belly. 22 And the hilt also went in after the blade, and the fat closed over the blade, for he did not pull the sword out of his belly; and the dung came out. 23 Then Ehud went out into the porch[b] and closed the doors of the roof chamber behind him and locked them.

24 When he had gone, the servants came, and when they saw that the doors of the roof chamber were locked, they thought, “Surely he is relieving himself in the closet of the cool chamber.” 25 And they waited till they were embarrassed. But when he still did not open the doors of the roof chamber, they took the key and opened them, and there lay their lord dead on the floor.

26 Ehud escaped while they delayed, and he passed beyond the idols and escaped to Seirah. 27 When he arrived, he sounded the trumpet in the hill country of Ephraim. Then the people of Israel went down with him from the hill country, and he was their leader. 28 And he said to them, “Follow after me, for the Lord has given your enemies the Moabites into your hand.” So they went down after him and seized the fords of the Jordan against the Moabites and did not allow anyone to pass over.29 And they killed at that time about 10,000 of the Moabites, all strong, able-bodied men; not a man escaped. 30 So Moab was subdued that day under the hand of Israel. And the land had rest for eighty years

-Judges 3:12-30 (English Standard Version)

Survival. Gold. Riches. Prestige. Fame. These are all stumbling blocks that can take one out of affirming their true self, and into the realm of denial. It can create cycles of self-harm, perhaps addiction, or other behaviours or illnesses that mask one’s descent into the shadow self. When our body is out of tune with our whole being, when we are living in dissonance between our values, physical life, emotional life, and spiritual being it has huge effect upon us. It creates a bad holistic system as we are disjointed, it is like driving a high way in a Red River Cart, or perhaps a vehicle unbalanced with 2 of 4 tires being spare donuts.

Has there been a time when you know you are not being true to yourself?

This is the story of Ehud’s emerging as a judge. Israel was not being true to who they were. They had sold out to what was the here and now. The short cut to who they believed they were meant to be, not wanting to do the work to ensure all came along healthily and were cared for. The fast pace of change that loses many along the way, causes pain, and in the end it may look glorious, but it is like a Jenga tower balancing on the precipice of the bottom centre block.

Ehud is the judge of deep soul work or psychotherapy for the person, the one that helps you delve back into your true valued self and deal with the B.S. that has torn you down.

After him was Shamgar the son of Anath, who killed 600 of the Philistines with an oxgoad, and he also saved Israel.

-Judges 3:31 (English Standard Version)

In case you need a refresher in relapse of the old life that was tearing you apart, here comes the sponsor Judge Shamgar, to aid you in cleaning up the new soul sludge.

This is the first three judges (life coaches, spiritual directors, sponsors, therapists) in discovering and renewing the authentic you when you slip back into the gremlin voices.

The stories of Judges remind us, that life is a process. It is about the process not perfection, for when we do reach the goal, we need to still believe in who we are.

 

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