The Faucet: Your Thoughts, Your Relationship with God
“My people have committed two sins; They have forsaken me, the spring of living water, and have dug their own cisterns, broken cisterns, that cannot hold water.” Jeremiah 2:3
“O LORD, the hope of Israel, all who turn away from you will be disgraced. They will be buried in the dust of the earth, for they have abandoned the LORD, the fountain of living water.” Jeremiah 17:13
What was wrong with me?
I was loosing it. I couldn’t concentrate. I was three chapters behind in my Accounting class, not because I didn’t want to do the work, but because of my thoughts. They always arrived suddenly. I’ll be in the middle of a lesson, in class, or even at home and then it would happen. It was like a faucet, an uncontrollable flood. They were thoughts; discouraging, negative, casting doubt on my salvation, hell-bent on my destruction. Even if I could fight back, I didn’t know how. They came as words, sometimes accompanied with images, but sometimes not.
I can’t describe to you how bad it was. When I am telling you that I couldn’t do anything without my thoughts verbally assualting me, I mean it. I would try to write something, and my mind would scream at me about how worthless I was. I knew that I wasn’t a positive person, but I recognized immediately that it wasn’t me.There was another force at work, but I wasn’t aware of it yet, or I was too proud to admit it.
I’ve been depressed for years, but it wasn’t until recently that my depression made an ugly turn for the worse.
It got to the point where I was marginally functional. I noticed it only happened when I was trying to do something useful. When I would try to complete an assignment, write, or even try to talk to others. For most of the day, all I could do was sit on my bed, read my bible, and pray. It was the only time that I felt peace. The only time that I felt sane.
I remember waking up mornings upset that I hadn’t died in my sleep. There was this oppressive baggage that I just couldn’t shake, and those voices…
I JUST WANTED RELIEF!
The humanist, pseudo-moralist I was once was tried to find a logical explanation for the occurences. Your mind is just an accumulation of ideas from the TV, your parents, the media and friends. My confused mind was just a result of the building-up of those ideas. The key to freedom, I thought, was building my own world-view and deciding for who I was for myself. I could be tolerant and accepting of other views, but had to base the world on my truth. From this truth, I could learn to value and love myself and build up my own self-esteem! Find meaning in myself.
It sounds nice on paper. Sorry to be the bearer of bad news, but…
IT IS A LIE!
This was something I found out the hard way. I tried to fix the problem in my own power, and was overcome. I was helpless, confused, and uncertain.
A double-minded man is unstable in all his ways. James 1:8
For God is not the author of confusion, but of peace, as in all churches of the saints. I Corinthians 14:33
Further, I don’t think there isn’t such a thing as a personalized world-view. Those who don’t find their value in God will find it somewhere else, but not in themselves, not on their own.
That was one good thing that I found out in my failure to fix my problem. People aren’t the center of their universe. It can plainly be seen in the world that most things–and unfortunately even people–aren’t valued unless someone decides to place a value on that person or that thing.
It was then that I began to understand why life on earth had become so dispensable. Why the elderly are seen as burdens on society. Why unborn children can have their fate chosen based on the whim of their parent. Why some people (even some former friends I had) believed in the sterilization of certain segments of society. Clever ideas and philosophies that are penned to appear benefitical to society, but reek of self-interest and general disregard for life.
I wasn’t a Christian when I came to that conclusion. I was disallusioned with the world, and I thought Christians were hypocrites. Nonetheless, with all my reasoning, the people I found in the worlf, with all their talk of tolerance and self-imporvement, failed to deliver anything other than empty words.
Finding your own truth, and positive self-talk is basically telling you to do anything, think anything, to feel better, even if that means lying to yourself.
Finally, I understood why life could be spent staring into the bottom of bottles or sharing beds with strangers. It’s almost as if people knowto find meaning outside of them, and if that meaning isn’t from God, where is it going to be? People want to feel wanted.
THE HUMAN PROBLEM
The truth is nothing on earth is going to fill you except a personal, loving relationship with Jesus Christ!
What I didn’t know then, but wished that I knew sooner, was that human value doesn’t come from within, but it cannot be found in the world either. The bible paints a different picture. God values all people everywhere.
This is good and pleases God our Savior, who wants all men to be saved and to come to a knowledge of the truth. For there is one God and one mediator between God and men, the man Christ Jesus, who gave himself as a ransom for all men–the testimony given in its proper time. 1 Timothy 2:3-6
For God so loved the world that He gave His only Son, that whoever believes in him shall not perish but have eternal life. For God did not send His Son into the world to condemn the world, but to save the world through Him. John 3:16-17
Self-talk and self-affirmation wasn’t helping me. Now that I am a Christian, I find it disheartening that this idelogy is starting to inflitrate in some areas of the church. I can browse through a Christian bookstore and find possible hundreds of self-help books. These books often take a few verses and build an entire doctrine on it. The focus seems more about what a person had get from God materially. The servant-like attitude of Christ, the teaching of self-denial, sacrifice, and santification is altogether missing.
I know, because in my search for relief, I read a few. I wouldn’t go into too much detail, but on the back of one book the blurb read: ‘will improve sense of self’. Interesting, I didn’t know that was God’s main goal for the Christian. The greatest goal that you can have in your life is to experience and know the love of Jesus.
…That Christ may dwell in your hearts through faith. And I pray that you, being rooted and established in love, may have power, together with all the saints, to grasp how wide and long and high and deep is the love of Christ, and to know this love that surpasses knowledge–that you may be filled to the measure of all the fullness of God.
But grow in the grace and the knowledge of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ. To him be the glory both now and forever! Amen.
So I was out of one solution. I hadn’t been able to fix myself in my own power, and all the wisdom of the world couldn’t save me (1 Corinthians 3:19). I was at a lost for what to do. God wants all people to come to the knowledge of the truth. It is the devil that intends to keep that truth, the light from men. I was in darkness and confusion. To break the cliche, I wasn’t searching of truth necessacarily; I didn’t know what I was looking for exactly. I didn’t trust the world, I didn’t trust myself, and I was heavily disallusioned with Christianity. I wanted a quick fix. I guess I wanted to ‘feel better’ (God had to work on me in that area). Stuck would be a good word to describe me. I was stuck.
Little did I know that God was working on my heart, that even in the darkness his light could be seen. I was searching for God, and I didn’t even know it yet!
For God, Who said, “Let light shint out of darkness,” made his light shine in our hearst to give is the light of the knowledge of the glory of God in the face of Christ. 2 Corinthians 4:6.
But, I was resistant to God. I mean, I tried the whole ‘God-thing’ before and it never worked. I wasn’t sure that He existed or even cared. Yet, even with all my agnostic leanings, I was human enough to be scared that if God existed, there was probably a hell.
I tip-toed and adapted some Christian views (read: only those I already agrees with. There wasn’t any real change of heart) and avoided select sins. I honestly thought that I was a ‘good person’.
I avoided God. I remember distinctly having the urge to read the bible, and I would brush it off. Or I would read it and become so frustrated that I would be tempted to toss it.
I wanted God on my own terms. I began to build and craft an idol that would take months (or possibly even years) to dismantle.
A idol of myself.