Getting Out of Your Funk…


If you’ve spent enough time dwelling on terra firma, you know that at certain times in your life you find yourself deeply entrenched in a funk; an americanism for feeling down in the dumps; which is related to a dutch word meaning a mental haze; and in German a word for gloomy or depressed. No matter the language or the usage, all you know is that it sucks. It sucks away your life and enthusiasm for living. It’s no happiness, no inspiration, nothing to look forward to, blah, blah, blah…Blah! But, there is something you can do about it! No matter how far down the rabbit hole you are, there is always a way out…

The place to begin when attempting to understand your feelings is first to examine your thoughts. Thoughts precede feelings. You don’t wake up in a bad mood. Your bad mood follows where your mind has been. Most folks pay very little attention to their thoughts. They sort of let them come and go like the weather. They consider themselves blessed when their mental environment is sunny and cursed when it is gloomy. The weather never stays gloomy and you don’t have to either. However, you do have to take some initiative with your thoughts. Letting your thoughts run makes you a victim to whatever circumstance is being engineered against you. Please read that sentence again! There are forces at work in the world plotting and scheming, persuading and manipulating to lead you and your thoughts to a certain place. You cannot see them, but instead only register their effects. They gain access to you by the thoughts you allow and encourage. They cannot overtake your freedom of will (at first), but they can get you off track; way off track! They begin by getting you to consider some negative aspect of life, then work out circumstances and situations that corroborate your wrong thinking.  And, if you remain stuck there long enough, you find yourself submerged and engulfed in heaviness from which it becomes very difficult to escape.

Life is spiritual in nature. It is not made up solely of the things which do appear. Ignorance concerning this will mire you in futility chasing your own tail, searching yourself and your own feelings for a remedy. Yet, you won’t find your solution in your own thoughts because the problem didn’t originate in your own thoughts. You are not fighting against yourself, though it may feel like it, you are fighting against a negative spiritual opponent working behind the scenes to control you. To defeat this spiritual foe (behind all of the misery of mankind) you have to learn how to compete spiritually. You have to learn how to fight back. And, amazingly, the arena of competition is in your mind. You see, it’s not as simple as deciding to be happy, though that is a good start. It is learning how and what to think and holding on to those thoughts though a monument of resistance be placed in front of you. If you find yourself today steeped in misery or unending gloominess, it is a good indicator that you are not winning the fight. You never want to get comfortable with those negative emotions or embrace them as some incredulously purport. Instead you fight them and you fight them and you fight them with spiritual words that negate and overpower their authority. Refusing to fight back only leads to defeat. Or worse, explaining away those insidious attacks with man’s wisdom will only serve to prolong the fight. You only win a fight by being stronger or tapping into something stronger than whomever or whatever you are fighting against. Evil has power but it is no match for God’s power.

It certainly doesn’t make for light conversation to learn about standing against evil. It probably won’t be found in the self-help section of the bookstore. Public opinion poo poo’s the notion of evil altogether or portrays it as a construct of man. The movie media displays it as frightening and ghastly. But, no matter the babblings of the naysayers, it does exist and it is your problem. God does not want you to be ignorant concerning evil, nor does He want you to be afraid of it. Instead He wants you understand what is actually going on so you can direct your efforts appropriately and with great and lasting impact. People are stuck today ensconced in difficulties because they no longer understand or acknowledge spiritual realties. When Jesus stood against all the forces of hell, he did so simply, though not easily, by quoting and cleaving to what God’s Word said. It is God’s Word quoted on the lips of believing that defeats the powers of darkness. It is the only way.

You can be delivered today, rescued, set free by learning how to tap into God’s power for your life. It doesn’t matter how low you may have sunk or how entrenched you may have become. All you need is a little humility and a willingness to learn about spiritual realities. You can escape any of the chains that have been binding you; break free from any bondage; break out of the bands and fetters that have been controlling your life. You can learn again how to live and enjoy and be blessed. You can return to happiness and joy and peace and love. You can escape from the prisons that have been holding you in. Stop thinking that something is wrong with you or that you are somehow deserving of the misery you have been living. Stop settling for less than the best in your life. You don’t need more medicine or more treatment or more of the expertise of men. You need God and His Word.

Finding yourself in a deep funk; down in the dumps; in a mental haze; gloomy and depressed is a horrible way to experience life and you do not have to live that way. There are answers and solutions for any malady that challenges your life. Won’t you be willing to find your way out of your funk? I sure hope so…

Just some good thoughts…

 

Ummm, How’s Your Energy Lately?


When you boil it all down (pun intended), life is all about energy. Life functions or does not function based on energy. Everything gives off something. Some things in life serve to increase your energy, while other things tend to deplete that energy. You can feel energized and excited about life or you can feel tired, bored and distinctly lacking in energy! So the question is, how’s your energy lately?

It is often said that children have endless energy. They flick about from place to place, happy as a lark, purely in the moment. They don’t waste their energy in pointless worry, but rather focus their energy on the things that give them joy. They seldom feel badly about themselves and if they do, they seek to resolve it immediately. They don’t give a second thought to whether or not their needs will be met as they wholeheartedly trust their parents. And if they do find themselves with unmet needs, they continue to expect those needs to be met regardless. In short, they are wonderful, little positivity machines spreading good feelings to weary adults. Many a tired parent has been uplifted by their children.

By the time we get a little older we forget the lessons of our childhood. Instead of focusing on the good in life, we get all caught up in everything that isn’t right. We churn and burn in our thoughts, painfully considering all that could go wrong. We dismiss childrens’ delightful attitudes as naivety and assume instead ‘grown-folks’ thinking. We worry our needs won’t be met and we worry when things are going well. We cleave to all perceived wrongs done to us and remain vigilant for any new ones. We live in the past and in the future, rarely stopping in the present to have a look around. We not only feel bad about ourselves for wrongs done, we refuse to give those things a time limit. Some people are giving all their energy away to some relatively brief, bad event that happened over thirty years ago. And we wonder why we feel so tired. We wonder why we drag about like corpses with barely enough energy to fight for our own existence.

People aren’t worn out today because of how much they have to do. They’re worn out because of what they have been doing with their minds. They are giving away their finite energy to things they cannot affect. They are focused on the wrong stuff. They are distracted, confused and bewildered. People are so accustomed to worrying that they think not worrying is irresponsible. They distress over possible, though not likely, unreasonable, terrible outcomes. And they do it habitually, perpetually, day after day and night after night. And in so doing, they squander away their precious energy. All they have to show for it is a life not truly lived. Instead of courageously reaching forward, trying new things, endeavoring and taking risks, they settle into a worn-out mediocrity, full of fear and uneasiness.

Since all people have an energy they produce, you can be greatly affected by the people you are around. Some people add life to your soul and although you cannot put it into words, you know you are the better because of them. Others serve simply to drain away your life force. They bring distress and unrest and aren’t fulfilled until you are brought down to their level. Add to that an environment steeped in negatives, fears and predictions of doom, you are left defeated and without hope for the future. You become a victim trapped in a world that offers you nothing good, lasting or worthy of your pursuit. In that mental turmoil you find yourself unhappy and depressed, your depression being a lowering of your vitality and energy. Again it is no wonder the whole place lives on antidepressants or wine or anything that promises an escape, if only temporary.

God is the source of all energy. He is the force behind all life. His love, His goodness, His light is the energy you need to live a life that is abundant, yes more than abundant! It is always there available for you if you want it. It has no downside, no bad exchange, no cause for distress. He offers you life and energy and enthusiasm, not in exchange for something but in spite of everything. In order to access His life, you have to do something different. You have to take charge of that mind of yours and bring it under control. He will never overstep your freedom of will, no matter what the preacher may have told you! You have to do it yourself (with His help of course). You have to stop giving your energy to negatives. You have to put an end to the futile worrying. You must learn to stop considering and discussing and reasoning with your fears. Fear brings life to a standstill. You already know that no-one gets out of fear by continuing to embrace the fear. Instead fear is resolved by depriving it of your precious energy! It fades away only when you deny it your power, your energy, your life. In order for fear, which is always a lie, to live it needs life from someone as it has no life in itself. All it has is illusion, tempting away unknowing humans into its lair.

Once you learn to obey God in your thinking, or at least start trying to do it, you will find new energy to pursue your endeavors. You will find enthusiasm (en-theos) and energy and love. You will find that life takes on meaning again. The blurry will become clear and you will have the clarity you need to make moves successfully. Oh you may get sucked in again from time to time, but know this – deciding what you will and will not think about and refusing the darkness will lead ever to the life you really want! Is your energy at an all time low, my friends? Start controlling your thoughts and see if God will not energize you afresh!

Just some good thoughts…

Are You Bored with Life?


qa_boredIt’s time for some interesting self-reflection. Are you ready for it? If you answered yes to the question, even secretly, then you are in the right place. If you answered no, that’s cool, but you are reading this for a reason and, it might not be what you think…

I’d guess that most people equate boredom with a lack of activity. You know like, you’ve got nothing to do, so you’re bored. Yet, have you ever been on a beach vacation? Beach vacays are full of nothing to do; serious lounging and maybe a choice, generally smuggled in, beverage. (Why in the hell are beaches and pools alcohol prohibited when 90% of the attendees smuggle it in? – I digress)

Before I wax philosophical on you, I decided to look up “bored” in the dictionary. Yes, it certainly includes a lack of activity or tedious events, but it has a component that deserves further inspection. It closely ties in with feelings of fatigue, weariness and a lack of enthusiasm. Who knew, right? (Well, you knew…)

There’s an interesting phenomenon that’s taking place in your mind, day by day. The phenomenon is called thinking. You are always thinking about stuff, even when you’re meditating because then you are thinking about meditating (smile). Your mind is engaged in almost non-stop chatter, from you to you! No, it’s not the Universal “I AM” communicating with you, that’s called revelation and the topic of another blog. It’s you telling you stuff about what is going on with you right now. Often it’s you instructing you on how you oughta be and chastising you for not being who you said you should be. Weird huh? Frequently it’s you warning you about some potentially pending danger coming your way, usually referred to as worrying. That’s not to mention the incessant analysis and evaluation that besieges you, because, well, you know, you, the adult, knows stuff! There’s the critical you, thinking critical thoughts about others who are not you and even though they are not you and you don’t really know them, you know they are not you and therefore cannot be okay. You, you, you and damn it, it’s exhausting to say the least! Now, go back to that definition…

Some would argue that you feel bored because you’re lacking enthusiasm for life. I would say that you feel bored because you are just plain ol’ worn out. You’ve entertained so much stupid stuff by the end of the day that you’ve got nothing left. Your energy bank is on “E.” Dale Carnegie used to say that hard work doesn’t wear a man out, but fear and worry are what fatigues him. In these frenetic times of media overload and wrestling with well planned and distracting issues (i.e. which bathroom people should use or political absurdities or Caitlyn) our minds are taking a hit. Everywhere you look and everything you read is pregnant with loaded messages, causing that chatter machine to take off. It’s all run, run, run, get it done, work harder, be rich by age 30, get the house, the car, the model, write a book, run. Educate your kids, pay for private school, get them in dance and sports and gymnastics and soccer. Make them the best, the fastest, the strongest, the most socially acceptable. Go, go, go, win, win, win, be the best, excel, dominate! And, while you chase it all, take your blood pressure meds, your anxiety meds, get your fiber, your vitamins, eat less red meat and for God’s sake wear your helmet!  Then, sadly, at the end of the day, fatigue, weariness and exhaustion! Who told you that is life? The messages did via your own thoughts!

Can you imagine how you might feel if you had some battery acid for breakfast, kerosene for lunch and Limeaway for dinner? I’m guessing you would be thinking you needed to eat better. Yet, when it comes to your thoughts and what you are feeding your mind, it goes unnoticed. Takeaway: You have to start noticing!

Boredom might be the polar opposite of enthusiasm. Enthusiasm is chock full of energy and excitement. It’s not something based solely on the external environment, but more based on what you choose to think. I’m not talking about that overworked phrase, “be positive” which people usually associate with foolishness such as saying your leg isn’t broken when it is. Enthusiasm’s word origin is “en-theos” and naturally God is involved. But taking it a step further, I’m talking about choosing to think and consider what God says is true versus the deluge of messages you get throughout a day. Whoever said you couldn’t get what you want and need in life? You did, albeit influenced, but alas, still you telling you. Who told you there was no point in __________? You did. Who convinced you that your life was so bad? You did. Who persists in chastising you and criticizing you and shaming you? You do, that’s who. All of the aforementioned stand in absolute contradiction to God’s Word. Did you know that?

The problem with feeling bored about life is that by the time it happens, it has already happened. You got worked over and over and over and your fruit got stale. If you weed-whack the bark of that fruit tree long enough, it’s going to stop putting out! You can tell if this is you if you stopped putting out (doing stuff you dirty minds-smile). When did you give up on the pursuit of your personal happiness? How did your definition of the good life become an electronic illusion you saw in HD?

The solution to boredom is simple, but not quick or easy. You have to take charge of you, namely by making your mind your friend and then making it think what you want it to think. This isn’t delusion. Delusion is spending time thinking how gross Caitlyn is going to look naked in that magazine! (LOL) Instead, this is called controlling your thinking. You can do it if you really want to and indeed you must, if you want to be enthusiastic and happy and blessed. God is never going to take away your boredom, but if you cooperate with Him, He will show you exactly where your thinking went (and goes)south. He will help you learn what is really true, remind you of it and love you back into loving yourself again…

Life is way too precious and way to short to live it bored out of your gourd! Grab and tame that unwieldy beast called your mind and see how quickly that dreaded boredom and lack of energy become a thing of the past! Oh and unplug for a minute, for God’s sake, to catch your breath.

Just some good, good thoughts…