She silently sits on my nightstand, her opaque eyes casting sneaky, sneering shadows in my dreams. And when she wearily wanders I hear her silky soft steps in the middle of the night, gently thumping in my chest. Her whispers, wailing, echoing through the tormented tunnels that lead to my mind, a dull pain in my lower jaw. Her touch is cold and calloused, caressing, but causing discomfort with each slow stroke. She is a spectacular spectre, for each day I wake up alone and a shrinking shadow of what I was before. Eroded emotions and mindless musings are all that occupy this somber shell. An image fading fast, like tracks in the desert, the wind-tossed sand covering what once was crisp and clear and carefully carved. I am the weary and weathered mountainside, the sun-scorched earth, the antiquated village in the valley that the ferocious floodwaters drowned long long ago. And so I helplessly hope and pitifully pray for sustaining and saving strength. I ask at the altar for abiding assurance and plead for a place in which to lay my heavy head. And I cling to the cloak that so many have cleaved and hold fast his hand in which they believed. And I beg for His bountiful bread. His life giving, living water. I selfishly squandered salvation. Please Spirit, shine on me again?