Tag Archives: mind

The Audience Responds

Did I mention that I’m back from the Dominican Republic? Ha! Well, I am.

I do need to blog about that. I realize this. I will work on it eventually. It will be a lengthy, process and I do not have enough energy to devote to that particular activity at this time. In short, the trip was amazing! We moved in wonderful unity. God is great!

Forging ahead…

I don’t know if you are avid comment readers, but I received a few rousing comments on my post ‘Captive Audience.’ I do not know if the people who commented on that post will read any of my future posts–or even the comment I left them after their comments. Whether they do or don’t return to my blog again, I still want to respond. Plus, for any future readers, this may apply as well.

In the blog ‘Captive Audience,’ I talked about testifying to the truth. Some people find that offensive, binding, and annoyingly religious. I tell you honestly that it is not. I am not in a religion about God. I am in a relationship with Jesus. I realize that phrase may be considered over-used to some, but it’s true. I’m not in a hollow, repetitive activity that involves worshiping an unknown Being known as “The Man upstairs.” No, I’m in a dynamic, epic, deeply transforming relationship with a real, very much alive, redeeming man. His name is Jesus.

My relationship with God is not a set of strict rules and wrath. It’s a grace-filled, love-driven, tender, powerfully refining relationship. It’s not a freeloading, do-whatever-I-want-and-still-go-to-heaven sort of thing. God does instruct very specific things in the Bible. And I obey them. I follow Christ and obey God because I want to. Not because someone is forcing me into a relationless religion.

When I go to the Murfreesboro Writers’ Group, I testify to the truth in my life. That truth is Jesus. That truth is that I’m single and want to get married. That truth is that I am a song writer and am learning to play the piano.

When other people speak and read their work, they are also testifying to the truth in their lives. Their brother died. They are writing a novel. They are working on a short story. Everyone who ever says any opinion is just testifying to what they believe as truth.

I’m not a narrow-minded religious zealot. I am, however, a person who reads the Bible, conforms my mind to what it teaches and grows in my relationship with Jesus. I don’t see Christianity as a list of things that I cannot do. I am free in Christ. I walk in liberty and victory. I like it that I love Jesus.

I know that not every person in the world is going to agree with me, what I believe, or how I live my life. I also know that the name of Jesus offends people. I expect that. The Bible even says it will happen so I’m totally ok with it.

I don’t want to be irrelevant to this world. I don’t want my faith in God to cause people to instantly shut themselves off to me. But I will not compromise what I believe just to appease someone else.

I will write that DR blog sometime. I will. I will.

Reel Regret

I think a lot. Sometimes too much. I used to think that all my thinking was a good thing. I valued my enhanced intellectualism and self-proclaimed wisdom.

I’ve recently learned, through reading books by Neil T. Anderson, that my mind’s been prideful and deceived for most of my life.

It’s certainly been humbling to learn about all the ways that I’ve been misled. The higher, hidden corners of my mind were exposed for their lowness.

But that’s not the point of this blog. It’s just a pre-explanation for what’s to come. So I’ll get to it.

Since my mind is racing and pacing so often, it’s like I have a movie theater, TV and radio station going all the time. I rewind and replay my favorite movie and television clips. I beebop along to my personal MindTunes soundtrack throughout the day.

The benefit to all this synaptic activity is that I’m not bored because I can just tap into my mind media archive. The drawback is that there’s constant cranium commotion.

As a fallible human, I’ve done things in my past that I’m not proud of. You could even call them regrettable. While my mind replays movies and TV, it also replays memories of my past and ideal situations for my future.

I call the unhappy memories of my past Reel Regret, with word play on movie reels.

I used to punish myself thinking about things in my past that I could’ve done better, or shouldn’t have done at all. I thought I was disciplining myself and preparing myself for a better future.

The truth is that I’d let Satan use those reel regrets to distract me from what I should’ve been doing in those present moments. I spent many days in the reccesses of my mind, completely unattached to what was going on around me. I didn’t connect with people, I just idly observed them as I reviewed the replays in my mind.

It’s safe to say that I missed out on the development of several relationships because I was thinking and not interacting with my surroundings.

Since I’ve began reading the Neil T. Anderson books (and books by Joyce Meyer and others), I’ve gained a lot of insight on the proper way to think. I’ve loosed bondages in my mind and my life. I’m more at peace than I’ve ever been and my mind actually experiences times of quiet.

However, with the increase in my thought control, there’s also been an increase in mental attacks from Satan. He’s tried (and succeeded several times) to make me continue to regret things from my past. He pushes play on the reels of regret in my mind. And, if I’m not taking my thoughts captive, I spend hours rehashing old problems and rehearsing how I’ll act in the future to make up for what I didn’t do in the past.

Satan even uses good things that I’ve done or intended to do and made me feel bad about them. Recently, I planned on giving a CD to a friend because I knew she liked that band’s music. I forgot to give the CD to the friend when I saw her. As soon as I realized I forgot to give her the CD, an onslaught of regret and sadness assailed me. It took me two days to finally get over feeling bad about that. Not only did I beat myself up about not giving her the CD and rehash all the times I could’ve given it to her, I started pre-planning the next time I’d see her and what I’d say when I gave it to her and how I’d make up for my previous forgetfullness.

It’s incredibly distracting to think like that. But I used to do it all the time. I used to think it was good that I was so analytical. I actually thought myself better than others because I analyzed so many things.

*takes a deep breath*

I was once trapped in the prison of my mind. But now I’m free. However, Satan and his legions still follow me around ready and willing welcome me back into mental distraction.

Satan is a player. He pushes the play button of regret. He plays on my emotions. He plays with my mind.

I’m pushing stop, removing his demonic DVD and unplugging the cord.

Come, unication

I hearby announce that I am making up another new word.  Yes, a new one.  Yes, a new word.

I make up new words all the time.  Take pudgulous for example.  I’ll use it in a sentence, “Wow, the runway looks pudgulous after the rain.”

Or how about this one: dragic.  Means tragic, dramatic and drastic.  Clever, eh?

*looks down*  *finds the point of this word party*

Ok, so unity has been on my heart lately.  As well as on my mind.  As well as stirring in my spirit.  As well as on the paper that I write on whilst I’m at church cuz my pastor’s teaching us about unity.

I used to think unity was hard.  It appears to be a difficult concept to activate into functionality.  But…appearances can be deceiving.  And, the appearance of unity is one of those deceiving guises.

Here’s the truth: You cannot make unity, you must maintain it.  As my pastor has said, “Find the 1% you agree on and agree on it 100%.”  There ya go.  It’s unity.

Christians get all bent up and pent up over areas of disunion.  It’s like this super evil ugly monster that stomps around and smashes little unity bubbles.  It’s very scary. 

If we would all agree to agree on something and then build from that, it would be stellar.  Forget agreeing to disagree.  Let’s agree to agree what we agree on.  That, my friends, is unity.

Back to my new word: unication.  I was being silly when trying to think of a title for this.  There’s the word, communiation.  But, in my wordish mind, I thought, “Ha…that’s like direct address and saying, ‘Come, unication.'”

And now here we are.  If you’re feelin disunified, just say, “Come, unication.” 

You wonder, “What’s it mean when I say that?”

I answer, “It means that you’re acknowledging that unity is alive and there for the taking.  So take it.”

Unication is unity plus community plus communication.  Talk to people about what you agree on and build on it.

Don’t cease communicating with somebody just cuz you think (or you actually will) fight with them.

Find something common.  Agree on it.  That is unication.

*nods*

Say it with me now, “Come, unication.”

Sighs him up

Yesterday was my birthday.  As I sat in my car during my lunch break today, I pondered to myself, “I wonder if this’ll be the year that I find a boy….*corrects self*…a man.  I wonder if I’ll find a man this year.  Is this the year, God?  Is it?”

Since I’m 365 days older now, it was a natural point of reference to wonder about such a thing.  I’d think the same sort of stuff on January 1st.  It’s a new year, so I casually wonder what God has in store for me.

Mind you, I’m not worried.  I’m not craving every moment of my day to find a man to betrothe and live with forever.  I’m not pining over every male that I see walk by me.  I’m not even sad that I’m single.  I actually rather like it.  I’m fully aware that God uses my single years to draw me closer to Himself.  I appreciate and value my intimacy with Him.

As I munched on my Cheetos, I wondered further, “Will I get married, God?  Aren’t I supposed to be fully satisfied in You?  I know the Bible doesn’t promise that I’ll get married.  That’s not a guarantee.  I’m not unhappy this way.”

Really.  I’m not unhappy.

I continued further, “Although, I would really appreciate that level of companionship with someone.  I’d love to know someone that fully and completely.  I would love to have that eternal companion.”

I took a break and reminded myself that married people aren’t married in heaven.

“Well, eternal as far as life on earth goes.  I would love not to be alone when I go to major family events.  I’d love to have my own 4th of July celebration with my family–my husband and my kids–instead of hanging out with some other family that I don’t even really relate to.

I surmised that I don’t dwell on my current lack of marriage and companion relationship.  That makes me happy.

However, I was then reminded of something else.  I often size a brother up.  I see a guy at church that I know is single and I think to myself, “Yeah…he’d be a good husband.  I think we’d fit.”  Or…”No…he focuses too much on exercise.  I wouldn’t wanna think about health that much.”

One of my greatest weaknesses is sizing people up.  I do it for everyone, male or female.  I know it’s wrong.  I know I shouldn’t be so comparative and critical.  But so often, I am.  Let me tell you that I’m a lot better at not comparing than I used to be, but it’s still a purposeful mental battle for me not to be instantly judgmental.

I don’t pine after men.  But I do size them up according to my personal scale.

It’s honestly a mild form of objectification.  I take a man’s character and life and compare it to my personal ideals and desires.  It’s a great struggle.  One that the world thinks is stupid to even be concerned about.

Subconsciously or totally blatantly, I’m thinking about marriage when I size up a guy.

It makes me feel kinda shameful too.  I’m a tad hesitant to even mention this to the world public.  However, I think it’s something important to be discussed and admit.  After all, the Bible calls us to confess our sins to one another so that we can grow and be held accountable.

*accountably held*

My roommate mentioned that she didn’t think I’d get married this year.  I agree with her.  As long as this sized-up comparison continues, singleness will continue.

I have had days and weeks of breakthrough with this.  Sometimes I see my Christian brother and don’t think of them in a comparative way at all.  However, some days I do.

So as I tame this comparative mind of mine, please hold me accountable.  And don’t be surprised if you find yourself behaving the same way.  If ya do…let’s talk.  I have years of experience.