Friday, August 19, 2016

Being Anxious For Nothing, Just Anxious!

I haven't been a fan of many blogs lately. Some remain steadfast, but too many "Christian" blogs have turned away from God's truth to embrace something else.

One blogger, Tim Challies, has always been unique for me. Recently he had a guest post that struck home with me. It can be found at this link: Some things you should know about Christians who struggle with anxiety. I suggest you read it through, then return here.

Welcome back. I know some will poo-poo the whole concept of anxiety being outside of one's control. If you feel that way — if you think that uncontrollable anxiety is on par with the LGBTQIA excuse of "God made me that way" and you cannot accept it — then feel free to stop here. Thanks.

For those who didn't ditch, let me say that I can empathize all too well with Adam Ford's situation. I have had various degrees of panic and anxiety attacks as far back as I can recall. Social anxiety comes and goes for me. My mother has noted that the symptoms of panic/anxiety disorder have run in her family, and I've been able to see it now that I'm aware of it.

Too many people pull out Philippians 4:6, with its admonition to "be anxious about nothing." While I encourage you to read the rest of the context, of course, I will say that those of us with PAD do precisely that: be anxious for nothing. Such anxiety attacks pop up out of the clear blue with no discernable cause, other than our bodies decide they need to do it.

So many want to point the finger of accusation, or to beat down the "sin" with a barrage of out-of-context verses. Trust me, it just comes off as condemning.

I consider my disorder to be my equivalent of Paul's humbling thorn in the flesh. It reminds me that I am not in control. It reminds me that I am imperfect. It reminds me that I am dependent on the mercy and grace bought for me on the cross.

Consider This: aren't we all?

Saturday, July 02, 2016

Acceptance or Hatred? God says, "Neither, and Both!"

I really haven't wanted to dwell on this, but I must. It seems that, according to popular opinion, a Christian must either accept a sin, or hate the person. After all, that's what God does, right?


Look carefully at John 3:1-21. This is what I like to call "the Gospel in a nutshell." This is the executive summary, the elevator speech, the short form of Jesus' purpose for being born, dying, and being resurrected. This is the real "love chapter" in the Bible, because it shows just how much God loves each and every one of us. Yep, He even loved the Pharisees, Judas Iscariot, Pilate, you, and me. He didn't send Jesus into the world to condemn every single sinner. We did that ourselves! God sends no one to Hell; we book that trip ourselves. It's a much easier trip, but the brochure doesn't really give an accurate picture of the destination.

We have all sinned and fallen short of the glory of God! (Romans 3:23) BUT God loved us enough to provide the way to save us. All we need to do is accept the terms of the offer. 
 (Romans 3:19-26)

God is love, and God in us causes us to love others (1 John 4:7-14). Therefore, anyone in whom the spirit of God resides cannot hate the drunk, the murderer, the homosexual, or anyone else. We all still fall short, because we continue to live in a world rich with temptation, and we are still arrogant, self-hroghcentered, and stupid. That is our failure, not God's.

So why do so many LGBTQs say we hate them? Why do Muslims who act in a peaceful manner believe we hate them? Too often it's because we remain arrogant, self-centered, and stupid. Too often we are out of tune with the Holy Spirit (the real one, not the emotional high some believe is Him). Too often we are total failures at communication. On the other hand, too often homosexuals identify so closely with their choices that they cannot distinguish between the two. Too often Muslims adhere to the religion of their family and society that they do not see the difference.

We need to ensure we differentiate between the two.

We must not hate the homosexual. We must hate the sin, and we may mourn the trap of reasoning that they fall into, but we must not hate the person. They may see it as, "God made me that way," but we must realize that is no more nor no less true than God making me with depression and anxiety disorder. Both are just as accurate as saying that a man cannot help but be "turned on" by another woman, or vice versa.

If I cannot make that distinction, then perhaps it's far better to keep my mouth (or keyboard) inactive and allow God to work through all lives involved.

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