Turning Off the Drip

Who knows the neurochemistry behind misery, worry, depression? It's a full spectrum I'd say. What about distrust and doubt and confusion? I'm reminded of the song "Check My Brain" by Alice In Chains. I mean this in a flippant and facetious tone but if you really want to get to the bottom of what plagues you, just rewire your neurons. It may be complex and incredibly dense, but it's doable. All our emotions are, what, combinations of three or four different chemicals? I forget. And once you work your way up, just start doing the right things and voila! You'll be totally shut off from the God who loves you and wants to help you up and out of all these processes. I feel there is real danger in ignoring God on our way out of hard times. I'm not just speaking to Christians, but non-believers as well. Because if you don't pause your busy, long train of a life to acknowledge the God who made you and loves you, all the mere activity of life ends in only "looking busy". And don't forget! Jesus is coming.

Routine, subroutine

In the twenty-fifth chapter of Matthew's gospel, Jesus relates the parable of the ten virgins. He says that, "While the bridegroom tarried, they all slumbered and slept." (25:5) As the "virgins" of the parable relate to believers in Christ ("...that I may present you as a chaste virgin to Christ." says Paul; 2 Corinthians 11:2), I find it almost disconcerting that every single one of the ten fell asleep. Now, the moral of this story is about taking our oil with us even as we fall asleep waiting for Jesus to return. Best to stay awake, by the by, but it is the middle of the night after all. Paul says "even so them also which sleep in Jesus will God bring with Him." (1 Thessalonians 4:14) Jesus says "But the wise took oil in their vessels with their lamps." (Matthew 25:3) This means they were ready and prepared and waiting, even as they nodded off. The foolish ones (five of them--a full half!), He says, "took no oil with them" (25:2) but were told by the wise to go out and buy. Evidently there was someplace open because they were able to find some oil but the sad part is, it was too late upon their return. The point I'm getting is it is so, so easy to get involved in routine that we miss out on the precious oil that God wants to give us. And that oil is what symbolizes the Holy Spirit. The ability to shine in the dark.

It's one thing to have routine. Routines can go either way. A subroutine is a process in computing where you can have any of several programs running in the background on their own and by themselves. Required, I should say, for your computer, but humanly speaking? Best to seek out the patterns of thinking that may or may not be in keeping with the Holy Spirit and His desired involvement in our daily lives.

"And that, knowing the time, that now it is high time to awake out of sleep: for now is our salvation nearer than when we believed. The night is far spent, the day is at hand: let us therefore cast off the works of darkness, and let us put on the armor of light." (Romans 13:11-12)

Water torture

"A foolish son is the calamity of his father: and the contentions of a wife are a continual dropping." (Proverbs 19:13)

We are the bride of Christ. I would say that out of all the busyness and distraction and torment of our lives (like a slow drip in the background) the best thing we can do is focus on Jesus. In citing the above verse, it's almost as if we are contending with Jesus if we don't take our torments to Him. A lot of my life and activity stems from slowly trying to integrate the things that vex and torment me (bills, schedule, routine, etc.) into self-enclosed, thoughtless processes bereft of the life and therefore solutions of the Holy Spirit. I do this and I'm seeking to do better (with His help). To "bring into captivity every thought to the obedience of Christ." (2 Corinthians 10:5) The thing is, as Paul mentioned to the Romans, it's "high time". The time is now. Unless we slowly integrate the mind of Christ into our day and activities, we won't be ready. And this is what is so damning about only seeing our brains and therefore our emotional states as products (factor, factor, product) of our physiology. There is no room for God. He can clear up depression in a heartbeat. He can erase the torment that "doth so easily beset us" (Hebrews 12:1) in a fraction of a second. And He'll do it for you. One (oil) drop at a time, if need be.

"Come unto me, all ye that labour and are heavy laden, and I will give you rest. Take my yoke upon you, and learn of me; for I am meek and lowly in heart: and ye shall find rest unto your souls. For my yoke is easy and my burden is light." (Matthew 11:28-30)