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Monthly Archives: Jul 2012

Mellowed cynicism

In the last 5 years or so,in other words since I’ve been able to think for myself,I have repeatedly found myself massively concerned with my cynicism.At times I have seen it tarnish what was otherwise a pleasant experience for others and most of the time it has robbed me of what would otherwise be pleasant experiences.

As with most ‘character defects’ ( a ‘character defect’ being loosely defined as things like anger,lust,the plain inability to be somewhere on time etc etc )the person carrying the defect is often the last to know but I knew and would defend my cynicism in the face of attack.

But,and again here’s the rub,there is no ‘character defect’ or sin or way of life that can not be changed by love when that love comes direct from the source of love himself.With the saving love of Jesus comes spiritual power that brings new understanding.As time passes on this walk of ours we can not but be dragged further and further into the fruits of the spirit,which would be living a spiritual life as I was taught in the rooms.

I now have found that my particular branch of cynicism was mainly based in music snobbery with a leaning toward most forms of entertainment.

This is pretty openly a childhood protection strategy that ideally would have found its course run by my early twenties when I would be able to see through the obvious holes in it’s basic premises.

Being such a big shot in the ‘gang’ it was obvious that from then on I would be able to decide what was ‘cool’ or not.Being qualified to make those decisions gave me ‘carte blanche’ to therefore decide that when something was so ‘uncool’ it deserved intense criticism.

Unfortunately I have had no contact with the other members of the youth group that I was a big shot in for far too many years.I have no way of knowing if any of them still thinks I might have an element of ‘cool’ and until recently no way of knowing that I had strayed so far from my original position that I was lost.

In the last 6 or so months I have found my branch has looked increasingly thin and pathetic.My music snobbery has taken a bashing in a gentle way.As I have seen the start of this I have ridden the ride with a smile on my lips.

For a quite a while I have been listening to internet radio and have found I fit a niche that I love which is almost totally with out lyrics and generally lacks the human voice completely.There are a few stations that play this particular ‘genre’ but I don’t care a bit who made the music.

Well that’s part of how to explain the way that forces,that I can not possibly start to explain,have been working in me to bring about change that I can not bring about myself.

Another way is to look at the basic fact that I am being changed from the inside.I am being filled with love and it is taking scales from my eyes so I can see clearer.I can see the way my words and actions can cause others trouble.I want to be kind and compassionate not cold and condescending.

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Posted by on Jul 29, 2012 in Uncategorized

 

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Let Go and Let God

As I busily try to run my world from the safety of my armchair I can not but be amazed that ‘the God of my understanding’ is actually fully in control.Deciding everything from the distinct and unique colour combination of tonight’s sunset through to the tiniest gust of wind as it blows through the trees to flutter their leaves.

He is in control.As He has always been in control.

My default position as a fallen man is to try to control as much of my life as possible.My learnt position as an aged man is that I have very little control of myself let alone my life.

There are plenty of observations of the truth of this matter in the Bible.From Samson through to John we are given many situations where the strength of character of the main protagonist is shown to be quite unprepared for the power of God as He puts His plan into action.

And yet I still think that given the opportunity I would make better choices for myself than His plan for me.My ISM ( Incredibly Short Memory ) jumps in and whilst hiding the truth of the mistakes of my past from me allows me to think that I can not only sort out my own life but that I could do an extremely good job of organising most of the people in my small sphere of existence.

As I grow older I spend more and more time lost in wonder at how my God has created this world.I find myself marvelling at the individual stories of how God has brought His light to shine in places that seemed so dark.I am so blown away by some of the tiny details that at times all I can do is stand with my mouth open and invite flies to enter.

As I grow older I slowly learn how to let go of my wishes to control my destiny and let God keep on doing what He has been successfully doing for a few thousand years.

It may seem like I cannot get through this particular phase of my complicated life without pushing my wants above my needs in my list of importance but when I let go and relax I have always found that He just keeps on doing all that He needs to do to keep this world spinning towards a future filled with love.

He is the God of love after all.

 
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Posted by on Jul 21, 2012 in Uncategorized

 

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Ghosts of MY past

When the room is quiet
The daylight almost gone
It seems there’s something I should know
Well, I ought to leave
But the rain it never stops
And I’ve no particular place to go

Just when I think I’m winning
When I’ve broken every door
The ghosts of my life
Blow wilder than before
Just when I thought I could not be stopped
When my chance came to be king
The ghosts of my life
Blew wilder than the wind

Well, I’m feeling nervous
Now I find myself alone
The simple life’s no longer there
Once I was so sure
Now the doubt inside my mind
Comes and goes, but leads nowhere.

Lyrics of a track by almost forgotten band ‘Japan’.

My own particular ghosts come in a variety of guises and seeing as I am having to look at some of them again maybe this is a good platform to lay some out and see both my part in them and their longer lasting effects.

Start with a statement (one I never thought I’d hear myself say) and work back.

I am divorced.

In the winter of 1996 I enjoyed the experience of a drug fuelled breakdown that left me broke,returning to my parents for a roof over my head and completely at a loss as to who I was where I was why I was what I should do or any such basic conclusion.At the point of starting to pick up the pieces I still had a strong belief that my salvation was an assured thing though.

As per usual I quickly returned to a new job and soon met the woman that I married.I had no idea that I would accept the 14 year age gap with so little thought.All I really knew was that my ‘caretaking’ defensive systems had found a useful target and I could concentrate on sum 1 elses problems rather than look at my own.

The woman in question had a very useful major problem that I could use for a great excuse to charge in on my white horse and bring salvation to.When I first got to know her she had 2 year old daughter who had cerebral palsy.So perfect for my learnt nature.Plus she was living with her parents who were causing more problems than I dared dream about.

Bing bong bang.I’m on the hook.

Roll on 2 years,which included :- me being put to the test of hearing that she was pregnant with the child of the man before me,me promising to myself that after 5 years I would assess our relationship based on communication and her daughter having major surgery, and I found myself for the first time in my adult life questioning my belief in God.

Full on questioning everything.As if some cloud had taken up residence in the gap between me and God.I did not believe in God at all and I can’t emphasis how massive that was for me.For the first time that I could remember I was on my own.

For a year or so.

After which I woke up to find myself engaged,then married and then divorced from someone I barely knew.I couldn’t have known much about her because I was too involved with myself and I actually knew very little about myself anyway.

My understanding of this period of my life is very tenuous.Kinda like grasping smoke.

But I know that I am being healed of the emotional scars.

I know that Jesus is working such a strong love within me that it will heal all of my pain.I know that He holds me tight in His arms whenever I need Him to.

 

 
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Posted by on Jul 18, 2012 in Uncategorized

 

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An open(ing) mind

It is only in the last three years,since I left the meetings of the 12 step fellowships,that I have been able to look fairly and squarely at the ‘key’ events and passages of time that my walk through this life has entailed.Whilst in the rooms of the fellowships I had been bombarded with ‘tools’ and ‘suggestions’ that only worked if you used them on your past behaviours as a means to changing from bad to good behavioural patterns.

Having been in the hopeless,despairing condition of homelessness only a year before I entered the rooms my ability to look at some of the other very painful things from my past was impaired.Going hand in hand with this problem was my inability to sensibly pick out the useful oft repeated sentiments from the utter bullshit that goes around with any self-help formula available.

As with so many before me my problems lie mainly in the area of putting my burden down at the foot of the cross and then just leaving it there.Some of the painful memories are when I have tried to do this with ‘spiritual’ brothers and sisters who have not coped well with the chasm between their lifestyles and mine.

It would seem that a part of my fallen nature is fully engaged in a mission to make me feel as bad about myself as it is possible.

I have spent some very peace filled times going through my past with God.I have laid these burdens down and owned up to knowing that I will need to return to some when I am even less encumbered by my ‘character defects’.I have felt the peace of forgiveness.

At the moment though I am daily fighting with ‘the ghosts of my past’.The many separated individual rooms in my mind that have varying degrees of warning tape/padlocks/flashing lights and screaming alarms.

So not only are they forgiven but they are all past and gone as well.I am the only person that even knows they exist.Yet they bite.

One of the bestest things that the rooms gave me was the realisation that the recounting of my experiences could be the only way to get to connect with another lost soul.Knowing that some one else ‘gets’ you is such a powerful feeling that it can break down the strongest of defensive walls.

Having that ability to connect with others far outweighs the struggle of continually facing my pains and I try to keep that in mind.

 
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Posted by on Jul 14, 2012 in Uncategorized

 

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. . . and breathe !!!

Aint so sure I know the destination right now.Can’t let that stop me though.At this present time the main thing I have to keep in mind is that the creator of the universe is not in the business of making mistakes.He spoke creation into place and it was.

I have a fairly grounded and positive understanding of some of the events in my life that used to have me crippled with pain and guilt.I have them fairly safely locked up in that long corridor of the past and they do not cause me as much heart-ache.

Of course this safety is based on me not opening the doors and looking again at the interiors.After all they are,at the very least,loosely categorised in degrees of how much pain they still cause me and how much pain I ‘feel’ I am allowed to let them cause me.

So having to relate these facts to mental health teams and other ‘support’ groups whilst knowing I will have to repeat this procedure to the Benefit’s branch of the government leaves me in a space where the power of the negative part of my thinking is magnified beyond my grasp.

As I continue my struggle with a mind that wants to drag me down to the bottom on a daily basis I have to now factor in the added stress of bringing my florid past to the fore.

I fight daily with the pain of being on my own and being the only source of encouragement and support that I have.I am continually picking myself up after falls and brushing myself off to start again.

But right now I am tired of that particular fight.I am tired of explaining why I am the person I am to people that I know are not really listening.I am tired of expecting any of them to actually take on board my situation.

And so I have little choice but to sink into the open arms of Jesus and relax in the absolute assurance of His forgiving nature.

Because to live without His love is impossible for me to begin to try to understand but to live without ‘human’ love is very possible.

 

 
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Posted by on Jul 12, 2012 in Uncategorized

 

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Secular or . . . ?

This week I was rudely brought face to face with a struggle all believers face through their lives and maybe even more so in these ‘end times’ of ours.My awareness of my problem was sparked as I was watching a programme about Paul Simons Graceland recording sessions and subsequent album plus world tour.

Previously to the programme I had a distinct view that the whole situation was safely in the secular halve of anything that happened in this world.My view on it was safe in that knowledge and therefore anything I learnt through watching the programme would therefore be as safely wrapped up in the secular world and thus distinctly not in the spiritual realm.

I do find this world much easier to grasp and understand when I can manage to keep a distinct line between the secular and the spiritual.My ‘superior’ understanding of life  relies on keeping the God stuff in one corner and the rest of life in another separate and unique corner.

Well,actually,fortunately not.

As I watched (and congratulated myself on my awareness of the issues involved) I was blindsided by a number of the South African musicians explaining how they were praying through the situations they were finding themselves in.I say I was ‘blindsided’ but it was the pleasant type of a blindside.

It made me stop and think (my only wish for this blog,by the way,is to make another man think for himself).It made me even more aware that God is moving through out all the occurrences in this ‘loverly’ little world of ours.All the occurrences of our tiny lives are in His hands.

So yet again I have to change the dimensions of the box that I put the creator of the universe into.I have to step away from my human desire to have everything ‘safely’ under the control of my tiny understanding and accept that He is in control of all and everything.

But my limited understanding of the Bible clearly states that He is the God of love and my experience shows me that this is true.So I’m pretty sure that it will all end up,at the very least,good.

 
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Posted by on Jul 6, 2012 in Uncategorized

 

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