Deliverance from a sick and conceited heart

Discussion in 'Prayers' started by DouayJamesGeneva, Mar 25, 2018.

  1. DouayJamesGeneva

    DouayJamesGeneva Active Member

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    I can't begin to go into my background as a person of faith, but I must say that I'm very concerned about my state spiritually. I have read in the bible where Paul warns us not to harden our hearts, but I feel I may be hardened and on my way to hell. One of the most difficult problems in my life is extending forgiveness and compassion. It may be because of my Asperger's condition to be naturally mistrusting. I've been hurt by people of faith probably as much if not more than I've been loved, but I still see the work of prayer and Christian faith manifesting in people's lives to not deny that it has any power. I find myself agreeing at times with nonbelievers (who have very carnal and cutthroat views of punishment/reward) and their claims that Christianity is perverse, because it allows people to get away with things they don't deserve to be forgiven for, or that it encourages people to take more liberties with crime and other wrongs because they believe in excessive forgiveness and the afterlife. However, I find it hard to see why people deny that atheists have done these things too, but unbelievers have no humility to acknowledge this in the media or elsewhere. So, I am not fully swayed that giving up my faith will make me a better person. Atheists are very savage and cold. But my problem is hypocrisy. I know true born again, believing Christians who have these fruits can do incredible things like this, but I cannot find myself to do it at all, and when I prayed or feel I have forgiven, I always go back to the past wrongs someone did to me to hold against them that I believed I had forgiven. I am trying to avoid being in communion with non-believers as they can be very deceitful. But hypocrisy is a big issue, and being unable to fulfill certain obligations of the spirit is suggested by some to mean you don't have the spirit in you at all. It has troubled me, and I feel like I have false humility at times. I know that thinking worldly revenge and reward is right is a symptom that you don't believe you are sinful enough to need forgiveness from Jesus. I find myself having hostile thoughts against Jesus and the bible's words on morality as being excessive and prudish, and believing that I am already good as I am and better than others so as to rightfully hate them. I want to convince unbelievers that Christians give more forgiveness and compassion than the media and other lies say, but cannot express it in love, as essentially I am hating them at the same time, because they are trying to pull me away from the only fountain of hope that I have and am looking to to overcome this problem with the counsel of consecrated believers. I am praying to the Lord that he'll set me free and that I am not permanently damned for my repeated sins in the past. Please send me your prayers as well.
     
  2. Lowly Layman

    Lowly Layman Well-Known Member Anglican

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    A bruised reed he will not break, my friend. Trust in that.
     
  3. Aidan

    Aidan Well-Known Member

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    Friend, it seems to me that you are experiencing a dark night of the soul, which happens to many of us. I strongly recommend that you read what St Therese of Lisieux aka The Little Flower wrote about this.
     
  4. DouayJamesGeneva

    DouayJamesGeneva Active Member

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    Thank you all. Keep the prayers coming. This evening, another wave of rotten memories came back from when I was publicly humiliated for the faith and struggled to defend it, but to no avail. It was truly nightmarish. I have a really vivid and long-term memory. But it seems it's more focused on very negative and shameful things that left me scarred than good ones.
     
  5. Lowly Layman

    Lowly Layman Well-Known Member Anglican

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    Dear brother I do not want to minimize your feelings on this point. You are in pain and I pray God will comfort and console you. I just wanted to say that I wonder if this memory is not being called to mind not to torment you but actually to build you up.

    Here is what I mean. On this Good Friday of all days, we should remember that even when all seems lost and when it appears we are utterly defeated, God is working all things, the good and the bad, to manifest his glorious and infinitely loving purpose in our lives and in the world at large. What you see as a "nightmarish" event is really a moment to be celebrated, a moment to be cherished....Our Lord has blessed you and is still blessing you. In the 5th chapter of St. Matthew's gospel, Our Lord Jesus says:
    "Blessed are you when others revile you and persecute you and utter all kinds of evil against you falsely on my account. Rejoice and be glad, for your reward is great in heaven, for so they persecuted the prophets whowere before you."

    Hopefully you see why this memory you have is so important...My friend, you have a great reward awaiting you in heaven! Rejoice over this memory! Do a jig! You are likened to the great prophets of God! What an honor you have received!

    All of us have Good Friday moments if we are serious in our obedience to the Great Commission, but never forget that the road that led Christ to his terrible crucifixion, led him further still to Easter Sunday! To the Ascension! To the very Presence of God! And he has left us the promise that where he goes, we go too.

    Praise God for the low moments, friend. Because the low moments are where we are blessed!
     
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  6. DouayJamesGeneva

    DouayJamesGeneva Active Member

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    Thank you for your encouragement. The exact same thing has come to mind to me recently, that blessed are they who suffer for the Lord, and these times of trial as a period of refinement. Although, I do not want to get too conceited about being persecuted so as to sound like I am being prideful towards other people who are still undergoing their sanctification and may appear less religious or zealous for the time being, until that seed that God has planted in them eventually grows as it was supposed to. I too, hope your Good Friday went well. God bless.
     
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  7. JoeLaughon

    JoeLaughon Member Anglican

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    Praying for you. I've had these moments as well. They do pass.
     
  8. DouayJamesGeneva

    DouayJamesGeneva Active Member

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    Battling more memories. When one seems to go away, another ugly and pervasive one rears its ugly head. Please continue to pray. God bless you in return, friends.
     
  9. Aidan

    Aidan Well-Known Member

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    Excuse while I revert to being a nurse once again, friend do you think your health might be suffering at this stage?
     
  10. DouayJamesGeneva

    DouayJamesGeneva Active Member

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    Not really, it's just something that happens every now and then. I take my medicine regularly, so I tend to do OK, but there's moments like this where I battle oppressive thoughts. But with the fellowship of all you nice people and your prayers, I can recover. I am feeling a bit better this evening after spending some time reading more spiritually edifying material, though the same memories are nagging me here and there, but I think I can recover. Still trusting in the Lord's grace to get through this.
     
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  11. DouayJamesGeneva

    DouayJamesGeneva Active Member

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    I'm trying to find whatever things in my life, habits, activities, things I own, that are pulling me away from God in a particularly toxic way. I am feeling the paranoia some Christians are talking about with the future, apocalyptic 'big brother' scenario, what with the centralization of the internet, the fact that liberal giants like Facebook, Google and Microsoft practically own the world, and the brainwashing of people with the media we have today. I am trying to be more minimalistic in my living to relieve stress, and trying to withdraw from the internet, or at least anything that isn't sound faith-based (Christian) material. I never had many friends growing up and throughout the last 20 years, have 'lived' mostly on the internet. Virtually all my online friends are gone, but for the better, as they were often immoral. Yet, the enemy is buffeting me with constant reoccurring memories of vile things that have been said on the internet about Christians for so long. I am seeking a kind of spiritual support like the hotel story I wrote. I am planning to visit the church more often that my family goes to. I want to be more invested in strictly Christian things than secular ones. Separating myself from the internet will be difficult, but I mostly plan to shun rotten, anti-Christian propaganda as much as possible. What's terrible is that if you google "How to avoid anti-Christian propaganda", the results will actually be full of anti-Christian propaganda! I am suffering mental problems from the years of spiritual deception and assaults from the internet and am trying to de-toxify from the brainwashing. I spent more time than I should on that smut rather than on Godly things!
     
  12. DouayJamesGeneva

    DouayJamesGeneva Active Member

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    I am in a dark state of my life. Things seem to be getting darker and more hopeless everyday. All I can think about is what people have done to me and how I wish I could kill them. I don't want to talk to people anymore outside of my family and am hoping that I'll die soon. I don't think I will ever get past the trust issues I've had my whole life. I want to run away and be isolated and live out the rest of my life alone and away from our culture. I am tired of having no place to go for refuge and feel like everyday I have to wake up and read vile propaganda on the internet or TV and cannot get away from it, even though I've struggled to make sacrifices to let go or try and ignore it, it always comes back into my way regardless of how much effort I put in to trying to drive it out.
     
  13. JoeLaughon

    JoeLaughon Member Anglican

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    DJG,

    Do you have a priest you can talk to? I think regular confession/conference with a priest and a referral to a Christian psychiatrist (finances permitting) would be immensely helpful.

    We are praying for you. I've suffered these times and it is not the end.
     
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  14. Lowly Layman

    Lowly Layman Well-Known Member Anglican

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    I am praying for you DJG. As someone who has struggled with bouts of depression, I know the power dark thoughts can have over you. Please keep in mind these thoughts are not reality, no matter how real they seem. Talk to your doctor candidly about the extent these thoughts have impacted your life. Continue to seek God's glory in this, even when you feel defeated. Give your burdens to God and trust that He will deliver you from your present pain. Remember the Prophet Isaiah, "by his stripes we are healed" and Our Lord's own words:

    "Are not two sparrows sold for a copper coin? And not one of them falls to the ground apart from your Father’s will. But the very hairs of your head are all numbered. Do not fear therefore; you are of more value than many sparrows."

    1) Don't lose hope!
    2) Don't travel this journey alone. Seek help from qualified medical professionals, your priest or pastor, and your family and friends.
    3) Know that God is bigger than any enemy, even when the enemy comes within.
     
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  15. Stalwart

    Stalwart Well-Known Member Anglican

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    Let me offer you some quotes on peace from Sacred Scriptures:


    "Be still, and know that I am God."
    -Psalm 46:10

    "The Lord is my shepherd; I shall not want."
    -Psalm 23 (the entire psalm is one big meditation on peace)

    "I have told you these things, so that in me you may have peace. In this world you will have trouble. But take heart, for I have overcome the world."
    -John 16:33
     
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  16. DouayJamesGeneva

    DouayJamesGeneva Active Member

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    One of my biggest problems is that I cannot stand being away from a PC or the internet for support. I am so accustomed to being able to talk to people about anything in the way that works for me, or having immediate access to counter arguments, or simply to block people from speaking to me on a whim, that the idea of leaving and having to face the world without it is really terrifying and unthinkable. But even the internet is extremely nasty and addictive, and it's very hard not to be pulled into temptation to read a nasty article or comment, being brainwashed by edited pictures and propaganda videos, etc. Anywhere you go, there's some sort of pitfall. Being Asperger, some of us have lifelong grudges and trust issues. I have been as hurt in real life as I have online and those memories stay with me. I do not want to be unable to answer someone adequately in person, or else I'll be seen as an idiot and it is incredibly painful not to be able to have someone to answer you on the fly for backup if you were confronting someone in person. Plus, I am so accustomed to engaging people in a certain way online. People I meet in real life who are neuro-typicals also seem to know less and are generally boring which makes me want to avoid them more. This is probably a common issue in our technology-driven culture nowadays.
     
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  17. JoeLaughon

    JoeLaughon Member Anglican

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    This is not psychiatric advice as I have no training, but do you have anything that appeals to you outside? A hobby? The gym?
     
  18. Lowly Layman

    Lowly Layman Well-Known Member Anglican

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    Hi DJG,

    May I offer a piece of unsolicited advice. It is the hard things, the things we feel least equipped or comfortable doing that God uses to stretch and mold us into to the beautiful creature he has planned for us to be. God has called us to be in the world and the enemy may well be using your feelings about interacting with folks as a way to stifle the ministry God has called you to. I say this as someone who is prone to introversion myself. I deal with difficult people in stressful situations from time to time. I work in an office of lawyers, so I have the occasional challenging personality to deal with. I used to avoid them as much as possible and try to hide in my office. But one day I had a thought. A thought I believe was given to me by the Holy Ghost. I remembered a quote by St Francis of Asissi, "The deeds you do may be the only sermon some people hear today." I became ashamed of all the wasted opportunities I had to share Christ--to be Christ-- to the folks around me, just because I didn't particularly like them or felt awkward engaging with them. I have since come to believe that the people God puts in my life, the mean and the friendly, the good and the bad, the boring and the interesting, are gifts. Each one represents a chance to share God's love in whatever way I can, as much as I can. Our jobs as members of the Church militant is to glorify God, advance His kingdom, and share His Gospel to all nations. We can't do that if we don't report for duty. Ministry opportunities are available via computer, but they are limited. There are lost and hurting people in your neighborhood, your school, your workplace, perhaps even sitting beside you right now, that need you to be Christ to them. Some may only be able to hear God's message in the unique way that you can give it to them. Would you hold it back from them? Of course not. Absenteeism is not the mark of a Christian, my friend. We all must be about our Father's business, all the time. If we pray and commit ourselves to do just that, I firmly believe we can make miracles happen.

    I am reminded of something else that is attributed St. Francis:

    "Lord, make me an instrument of your peace.
    Where there is hatred, let me bring love.
    Where there is offense, let me bring pardon.
    Where there is discord, let me bring union.
    Where there is error, let me bring truth.
    Where there is doubt, let me bring faith.
    Where there is despair, let me bring hope.
    Where there is darkness, let me bring your light.
    Where there is sadness, let me bring joy.
    O Master, let me not seek as much
    to be consoled as to console,
    to be understood as to understand,
    to be loved as to love,
    for it is in giving that one receives,
    it is in self-forgetting that one finds,
    it is in pardoning that one is pardoned,
    it is in dying that one is raised to eternal life."

    Let us both agree to welcome the lost and hurting souls God has put in our everyday lives and make sure our deeds preach a sermon to them worthy of Our Lord. We can do this, my brother. You can do this.

    God bless you!
     
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  19. DouayJamesGeneva

    DouayJamesGeneva Active Member

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    I do have hobbies. I focus on those things for some comfort, at least. And thank you Lowly and Joe for your encouragements. Lowly's post is something that occurred to me during this affliction.

    Also, pray I get delivered from the clutches of my psychiatrist. I believe I mentioned him before. I am focusing on remembering the mercy and forgiveness my fellow Christian brothers and sisters have shown me in the past that has kept me going and with hope, that my psychiatrist says is a delusion and a lie, in spite of all his 'wisdom'. They don't show that kind of compassion in his field. They love to torture their patients. I hope to find a Christian psychiatrist who can agree with me on faith and still offer appropriate treatment.
     
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  20. Shane R

    Shane R Active Member

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    My brother has struggled with mental health issues his entire life. His first psych's preferred treatment was to keep him so medicated that he was in the background and not a bother to anyone. That did not please my parents and they struggled for years to find a suitable professional who would actually work with him to see him flourish, as much as possible.

    I hope that you can find a professional that can help you flourish.
     
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