On our journey to perfection, we rarely learn from positive experiences, but often trials.
In the words of Mr Churchill, ''The kite rises highest against the wind, not with it''.
The ninth step on our path is understanding that God withdraws His hand from us once in a while, in order for us to remember that all we have comes from Him.
He knows our limits and how much we are capable of obeying Him. He will often times let go, only to catch us right on the edge. By doing this, God reminds us of how fragile and lacking we are outside of His presence.
"Be strong and courageous, do not be afraid or tremble at them, for the LORD your God is the one who goes with you. He will not fail you or forsake you." -Deuteronomy 31:6
Mass media leads the population in focusing on external darkness, and feeds our subconscious a story. Every day, the attention is on irrelevant news, that rewire the way we interpret reality. They feed us fear, only to keep us from seeing the positive changes all around us.
However, this is just a mere distraction, as God knows that the true battle is within.
“One can have no smaller or greater mastery than mastery of oneself.” - Leonardo Da Vinci
Darkness is not only the evil we see outside, but darkness lies inside each and every one of us. It’s a very familiar voice, that tells us to sleep more, delay, procrastinate, and finally, leave it all up to God! If He’s almighty and powerful, do you think He’s not going to resolve this as well? Have a little faith! (Sarcastic)
And this is where things get mixed up. The ‘voice’ uses God’s attributes and hands them over to us on a silver platter, to be used as an excuse for doing our part. A relationship does not work if both sides are not fully committed and interested in each other’s needs.
The strange ‘voice’ defends its case by reasoning that God is so omnipotent and loving, that He will take care of His and our needs at the same time, that life is a waiting game, and we are not to disturb anyone while on earth, but play it as safe as possible.
Don’t go all crazy trying to change the world, you’ll get into heaven anyway! If God has a special plan for you, He will surely come down and tell you in person. If not, just do whatever it is you’re doing, be nice to people, enjoy life, and wait to go to heaven.(To be read in a sarcastic tone!)
The war that’s going on our behalf in the spiritual realm paints a vivid picture of the urgency of today. Instead of doubt and delay, we need to make a decision and a change right now.
‘’Faced with the choice between changing one's mind and proving that there is no need to do so, almost everyone gets busy on the proof.’’ -John Kenneth Galbraith
Prozac, a drug used to fight depression, is now used by one of ten people in America, and the number has been skyrocketing every year.
Anxiety seems to creep up from the moment that awful alarm sounds every morning, to the time we need to go back to bed, knowing that our never ending ‘to do’ list only got longer today.
Progress seems unimaginable, and we don’t even know where to start. Which problem to tackle first? Should we be selfish and take care of our own personal wants and needs, or expand and try to resolve the pending issues of that someone we love?
The flow of questions runs through our mind and never seems to stop. When an answer arrives, it just gets trampled by the army of new questions and smaller problems that come with it.
Outwardly exposing an ‘everything is ok’ look, while a tornado hides inside us. Because of our need to be strong and not depress other people with our silly ‘mundane’ difficulties, we victoriously store it all in, and live an unspoken battle, not being able to enjoy life even for a couple of minutes.
A sense of despair is the right state of mind, as it approves our need to feel constantly busy, working towards something, no matter what. Progress is necessary, as stagnation would only make the thoughts in our head louder and louder.
Anything that will get the mind disconnected and stop the river of ideas is welcomed, and usually this is where most people take the wrong road.
All forms of addictions, including alcohol, drugs, video games, porn, etc, are only a way to stop the river, silence the mind, and give it something else to play with for a while, until ‘mommy’ can get some rest. We treat our minds as bad behaved children that sometimes need to be let loose, so that we can finally find some inner peace.
We need to locate the place that is leaking too many thoughts into our minds at the same time, and just put a plug on it. But how do we know where it is? For such a long time, humanity believed that we are the creators of all those thoughts. What scientists found is astounding… (by scientists, I mean myself, while enjoying a tub of Ben & Jerry's)
What if we stop for a moment, and try to resolve this problem by turning it upside down? What if all these crazy, unstoppable, annoying thoughts and ideas don’t come from a place of their own, but are only sucked into our minds by a void that already exists, a missing piece, a part we somehow lost?
The point is, maybe we don’t need to stop the flow of thoughts, we just need to fill the void that’s attracting them, sucking them in.
Everyone experiences these problems to a certain degree, ranging from a little anxiety every now and then, to full on ADHD and other disorders of this sort. It all depends on how fine-tuned we are, or how perceptive to our environment and inner self. Generally, people that suffer from these conditions are only humans that have learned to pay more attention to what actually goes on in their minds, and they tried to put everything in order at some point. Bad idea!
Without realizing the void, it’s like playing Tetris with never ending incoming thoughts. We don’t want them, we would actually love a break. So it’s not really our inner self that’s causing them, it’s the missing piece that’s drawing all these questions and emotions in to fill itself.
It’s trying to find peace the wrong way.
The void happened when we sinned, and broke away from our God. That is the missing piece, the hole we now have in our souls. It’s so big, that it creates a suction force and draws in all these life pondering questions right when we’re about to put our heads on the pillow and drift into peace and quietness.
When you want the water in your bathtub to stop dropping level, you have to plug the hole.
The plug in this instance should be the Holy Spirit, which we ask to fill us, so that we may be re-connected with our saviour. Of course, before we do this, we must believe in Jesus as Lord, acknowledge that we are sinners, and ask Him to forgive us, with the honest intention of not doing it again. (The whole package!)
It all sounds so cliché, but the active ingredient is a special type of prayer. Not just any prayer, the one we usually go to, where we come with our bullet pointed list and start ticking stuff off, in the presence of God.
This is a special type, and it involves clearing our mind of absolutely everything, just like meditation, but instead of just focusing on the empty, on nothingness, focus on Jesus! That’s it!
Meditation works so well, because they’ve figured out half of the solution to a huge problem.
Voiding our minds and focusing on nothing still calms the waters and stops the thoughts from coming in, but it’s not a lasting solution, as the void is not filled with anything.
It’s just a temporary block in the river, and as soon as we come back to reality, the dam breaks and the flood begins again.
Focusing on Jesus, on God’s law, meditating on His word doesn’t only stop the thoughts temporarily; it also fills the void with His peace, with His substance, so that it lasts until the next session of prayer. It doesn’t just stop anxiety while we’re doing it, but permanently seals the hole.
It puts an end to our biggest problem so far, the void that was created when we broke away from our perfect God.
The process of filling the gap and finally escaping anxiety begins with our understanding of the God that remained with us. God is one substance, three persons, one God.
The Holy Spirit came down after Jesus took our sins, and finally started looking for people that want to return to their purpose.
Understanding His intentions and will, what we have to do in order to tighten our relationship with Him, is an absolute must in order to start filling the gap once and for all.
So ask the Holy Spirit to fill your void right now, to make you whole again. Wait on Him in peace and silence, and focus on His unfailing love.
This very important step in escaping everyday anxiety once and for all, relates to removing all the broken links in our life. Negative people will have to see our face less often, and everything that does not build us will have to be cut off.
We tend to keep so many people around us from a sense of pity, telling ourselves that we are strong enough to carry them as well. Every now and then we lose sight of our own beliefs, let their reality rule over ours, and for a couple of hours, join them in ‘giving up on life’.
Whether eating unhealthy, smoking, drinking, taking drugs, it’s all just a means to escape the storm in our heads and ‘relax’ for a while.
By keeping these kind of people around us we are sending them mixed signals. Regardless of what we tell them, our body language says we accept them, and deep down, they know we kind of want what they have.
They keep us around like a canary down the mine, and it’s a clash between will-powers. We’re not really progressing in life, we’re just stuck.
You have always been wanting to fly, and you know it! All you need to do is cut off the weight that’s holding you down. You are already trending upwards!
The fact that you’re not reproving them for their actions, by refusing to spend time with them anymore, is in fact letting them know that they’re still ok. By trying to be there for them, and accepting them in their state, you are actually slowly killing them yourself!
Changes are tough, and life is not to be played with. We’re only here for a short while, let’s stop wasting time, and learn to exercise our will.
Willpower is counter intuitive. The more you use it, the more you have. It’s extremely important that you realize this, and learn how to build on it.
When delaying instant gratification for later benefit, we somehow get even more power to use on the next beneficial action for us.
If you start the day off with eating pizza, you will soon realize that you don’t feel like going to the gym that day, you don’t want to engage in anything productive, and you will just label it as a ‘cheat day’.
However, starting the morning with reading a book, not necessarily the Bible (but it better be Christian), or running for 20 minutes, empowers you, and from there on, everything you’ve been delaying just seems to take care of itself.
The more you stay in that productive state of mind, the more you will accomplish. Start using your willpower, it will provide tremendous help with relieving anxiety.
The magic step, the one to seal of the deal, is actually writing your core beliefs on a piece of paper, somewhere. These thoughts are now transferred in the natural realm, and they are brought to life in front of your eyes.
The simple process of transferring them on blank paper makes the needed connection, and sets them as your new foundation, on which you can now build with confidence.
It is a very powerful process, and many underestimate it.
It seals the void and puts a lock on it. The key is what’s written down, and only you know it. Nobody can access your mind anymore, without knowing what you believe.
Write it down today, go through the process of change, meditate day and night on God’s perfect law, on His love and character, and may you be blessed more than you ever thought possible!