Wide Awake (when denial wakes you out of a sound sleep)


I was in the dark
I was falling hard

With an open heart


How did I read the stars so wrong?

There is a moment when things come into alignment and we are introduced to ourselves, to who we really are, for the very first time. The fog of our slumber is burned off in the rays of self-illumination and we see things clearly.

When this happens, our first thought is to wonder…

How did I not see it before? It’s so clear to me now.


And now it’s clear to me
That everything you see
Ain’t always what it seems


Yeah, I was dreaming for so long

In this state of awake, we begin to see how the undercurrent of our lives has not only swept us away, but rushed into our lungs as well. Struggling to breathe and just moments from flat lining, we must decide – are we going to drown or ask God to save us?

I wish I knew then
What I know now
Wouldn’t dive in
Wouldn’t bow down
Gravity hurts
You made it so sweet
‘Til I woke up
On the concrete

This is when God is at his best.

While denial holds a pillow over our head, God extracts our soul in the nick of time. He doesn’t breathe the breath of life into us like we’d expect, but instead spanks our feet like a newborn baby, letting the scream of new life build up within us.

And now it’s up to us. We can hold our breath and let life happen to us, or we can rear our shoulders back and scream into the person we were always meant to be.

Falling from cloud nine
Crashing from the high
I’m letting go tonight
Yeah, I’m falling from cloud nine

If you scream, expect to feel something like poisoned hot fire in your throat. Resist the temptation to swallow or it will turn your lungs to ash. You must cough it up…all of it.


Not losing any sleep
I picked up every piece
And landed on my feet


Need nothing to complete myself

We cough and wheeze. We aspirate the poisoned hot fire from our mouths. It runs down our faces, burning and disfiguring a bit of us that will never look the same. But our scars are beautiful. They become us. And they will stay with us throughout our lives, bearing witness to the burned down houses of denial we’ve tried to set fire to a hundred times before.

Only this time we did, and something deep within us was purified in the fire.


Out of the lion’s den
I don’t have to pretend
And it’s too late
The story’s over now, the end

Waking up is painful. You have to fight for it and then do your best to STAY awake. It’s easy to lie back down when the bed you’ve made is so comfortable – when the body impression you’ve left in the mattress feels like home.

“The bed YOU’VE made.” If we don’t get this littlest bit…we will never wake up.

When things become difficult on the road to recovery (and they will) it will only be natural to shift the blame around. But the moment we start pointing fingers is the moment our earnest desire for change will be neutralized.

Accusation is a shifty and heartless criminal. It sees the devastating effects of the hurricane we’ve lived through and will loot our hearts just the same, robbing us of whatever is left in the aftermath that could help us recover.

Thunder rumbling
Castles crumbling
I am trying to hold on
God knows that I tried
Seeing the bright side
I’m not blind anymore

I’m beginning to understand that my denial wasn’t hidden away so much as it was standing quietly at my bedside, whispering my name. I should’ve acknowledged its presence long before now, but I was afraid to wake up and face the reality of my life. Consequently, every time I heard it buzzing in my ear, I punched the snooze button.

But you can only punch the snooze button so many times before it stops ringing altogether.

So if I’m going to do things differently, another layer of denial must be peeled away. Only this time, not thin and flimsy like the skin of an onion, but thick as a grapefruit peel.

Do you know what the word “beseech” means?

Be–seech: Ask (someone) urgently and fervently to do something. To implore.

This new awakening is beseeching me, my friends. It is asking me, urgently and fervently, to do something – to change. To fall from cloud nine…or maybe even jump. It is imploring me to loosen my grip – to let go of the control that has spun my life out of control.

So one by one, I’m peeling my fingers from the ledge of my life.
(My life as I knew it.)


I’m letting go tonight.

Because I’m wide awake.

(*song lyrics from “Wide Awake” by Katy Perry)

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