Just Thinking

Is Your Needle Stuck?
1/28/2019 12:00:01 AM by: CL Lawrence

       

        Do you recognize the ol’ school record player? Before cassettes, CDs and MP3s, “back in the day,” you just had to have one. One thing they all had in common, the needle on the front underside of the arm. It didn’t matter how expensive or inexpensive your record player, table top or elegant console floor model, you had to keep dust off the needle and change it regularly. Otherwise the needle would malfunction (drag or skip).  Sometimes the needle would get stuck in the groove or scratch of a vinyl record, and keep repeating the same few bars of the music until you manually fixed the problem. You had to quickly lift the arm of the needle before it caused more damage to the record and to the needle itself. 

       
        That’s what happens to some of us; our needle gets stuck and we keep repeating the same story over and over to anyone polite enough to listen. Sometimes you see a person, after not having seen them for years, and they’re still singing the same old song called “tale of woe.” Some are genuinely asking help to heal, but just going about it the wrong way, the only way they know. Others take comfort in the familiarity of their grief and sorrow. (Those you just love them and leave to themselves.) Either way, there’s a need. That isn’t to say the story isn’t a legitimate story of hurt or disappointment. Surely things happen and feelings are real. Just don’t let the needle get stuck.

        When your needle is stuck, you continue to re-live the hurt. The needle is stuck in the groove of the hurtful experience, and the pain continues to be in the “now.” It has the same energy in the present as it had when it happened. 

        Just as when the needle would get stuck in the groove of the vinyl record and you had to stop what you were doing, get up from wherever you were, go over to the record player and fix it, so must you fix your needle. You can’t undo whatever happened. Maybe you tried a business that didn’t work, and you lost everything, including your pride. Maybe someone did you wrong. Maybe you didn’t get the break you deserved, that job or promotion. Maybe you got passed over for someone less qualified. Maybe you were the scapegoat for someone else’s issues. Maybe someone reneged on a promise to help you. Maybe your marriage(s) failed. There are endless maybes. The pain is real and seems endless. There is no fault for feeling pain. That’s human.  It’s also human to heal, so lift the needle out of the groove of your memory so that you can move on. You can’t experience the blessings in the now, if you’re living in the then.

        The question to be answered in the here and now is this. “Is your needle stuck?” Are you that person with one song? Are you singing the same old song to the same old tune? With all due respect, kindness, and compassion, … no one is singing with you and no one wants to keep hearing the encore. They’re trying to sing their own songs.

        Here’s the good news. It’s time to let go, move on, sing a new song, and see what blessings await you.

        Your vessel cannot be replenished and refilled with new, fresh water if you still have it filled with what has become sludge. The saying goes like this: “Let go and let God.” Sounds good but there’re no instructions attached. Pay attention. It starts with these questions:

  • Do you want to be healed?
  • Do you want your life back?
  • Do you want to know what your life could be, and live that life now?

        The choice is entirely yours. If your answer is “Yes” to those questions, the only thing holding you back is you. Yes, you may want people to understand your pain, maybe even sympathize with you about it. Truth is, whether they do or don’t makes no difference whatsoever. When the pity party is over, no matter how long it lasts (weeks or years), the choice to move on, or not, begins and ends with you.

        It isn’t easy; not much in this life is easy. There’s no magic way to begin again. You must do the work and you can do it.

        It begins with knowing that you are made in the image of God, that you are a unique expression of the Infinite Being, the Great I Am. The decision to live a whole and complete life – in the present – in the now, is wholly possible because God is with you; never absent.

        Take the dust off the needle, change the record. When you sing a new song, others will sing with you.

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