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pursuing the upward call with fear and trembling

just a 44 year old man seeking to share my meanderings with the world at large or the blogosphere at small

Friday, November 23, 2007

Mind Matters

Just a lil play on the old *mind over matter* adage there. I have been thinking of a post about the mind for awhile now though. Feelings have become the dominant focus in our culture i think for a number of reasons. I am odd in that I seek to think through things over and over and over again secondguessing down to an art form, and yet ultimately my feelings end up being the prome force that drives me. I am INFJ although I would very much like to be a Spock ao often. I have always had a vivid imagination and one that can be very wild and photographic in some senses. I think my being taught to read at an early age helped this, reading is a journey of the imagination connecting with the mind of the author.

I can recall times when a few kids on my block as well as me and my sister decided to try a seance. I was in catechism and going to Catholic Church at this time, even though i took it as a silly game I know inside i was telling God to forgive us for doing this and to please not really let any spirits or ghosts or dead people talk or appear. Another time some friends of my cousins who were teenagers then were playing with a ouija board again something in me just felt it wasnt something to be messed with. I think they thought the ouija moved and spelled a word somehow. I went to a summer camp 2 summers in a row, my mom was the camp nurse. It was an all jewish camp and we were catholic!!!! lol but hey it was a fun time a good experience. We had a campout away from our cabin one night and of course the ghost stories came out. Some sex stories as well even though we were 9 and 10 year olds. I remember some of the images of the ghost stories gave me nightmares. I used to be scared after reading the newspaper or seeing stories on tv that sirhan sirhan and charles manson would come and get me. Dont ask me how or if this made any kind of sense at all i just felt they might find a way.

I remember seeing in the back of comic books an ad for a book that would give you a secret power teach you how to leave your body and go invisible somehow hypnotize people or read their minds. Mostly i knew this was just fantasy and a way to get money from people silly enough to buy such drivel, but that crazy part of me just wondered enough that some truth could be found in there. I didnt buy the book but I used to try and do breathing exercises at night and to attempt to leave my body. I especially did this after moving from New Jersey to california and when I was so lonely and missing my old friends. I tried soooooooo hardddddddddddddd to leave my body and appear in the room of the girl i really liked alot in jersey theresa. Oh how i so longed for it to work but alas nada all that happened was some weird feelings from almost hyperventilating and feeling very lightheaded.

I find it a tough thing to *take all thoughts captive to the obedience of Christ*. To have my mind selfcontrolled and free of fear worry and doubt as well as scattered other jumk here and there.I want my mind to be fully centered on Christ and His truth His Word. I have a big part of me that does, but there is also this part that has always struggled so much the part that has painful memories and images and hurts etched inside . Seeing my dad in his coffin,lowered into his grave at his funeral, images of being awake somehow in that casket and wanting to escape but unable to and just stuck there forever. I had an experience once when I was 7 i think. I went to useb the bathroom at a jail we visited, and for some reason the door was too thick and strong it wouldnt open. I felt trapped i began crying screaming to get out and thankful;ly someone came and opened the door Im not sure how long it was.That feeling of being trapped alone abandoned. i have had that as long as i can remember apparently even before my dad died. This is a haunting thought especially when thinking about eternity.

I have heard many times sermons given that end up with a story focused upon the horror of hell and how you need to repent to be saved from it and find salvation in Jesus. Of course I want salvation in Jesus, but man o man the fear that lies inside over the images of eternal hell. The fear that by slipping and committing certain sins facing Gods wrath, the fear that God sent Jesus only for His *elect* and possibly not being one of them. These are the pockets of mind/feeling pain that have been in there a long time and that i always thought were just part of the battle we all face in this life. i believe they are and i want to seek to put in practice the armor and weapons God supplies me with to fight them off. Its just hard when i at times struggle to think I even am wanted by God to have His weapons and be His. This is the contradiction that crushes me at times, I seek and long to be a servant and one who lives my life for Him pursuing Jesus call on my life and seeking to live as He did. I also have the large piece of me which feels/thinks Im too unworthy, too much a failure and screwup to even think I could seek to hope He wants me as His. No wonder i have such fear of death and have had so many instances where i tried not to sleep because i dint want to die while sleeping, so much attempts to control that which i have no way to control that can be done other than crazy ones my mind makes up. I ultimately end up just crying out to God in the depths of my soul to forgive me a sinner and help me to accept His =grace and love in Christ and to let that lead me in how i live and treat others. Hopefully by sharing this battle so openly on here He helps me do that very thing more and more. In lots of ways He has already, thanks to finding so many of you amazing people out here. I pray I can keep pursuing deeper and deeper to really give all of me to Him, losing my life for His and discovering the glories and wonders He has in store as a result.


At 6:00 PM, Blogger Barbara (aka Layla) said...

Keep sharing the battle Robert, you're not alone. We all struggle with different things in different ways. I sense agony in you sometimes and I wish I could wave a wand over you (and me) that allowed us to automatically be accepting of grace, love and forgiveness without second guessing or feeling unworthy.

At 4:27 AM, Blogger Mike said...

Robert, my heart hurts for you when I read of your fears. May we all come to understand Father as the God of all love.



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