Monthly Archives: July 2013
When you think of HELL, where does your mind take you?
A pit of fire? Perpetual fire beneath the earth where the wicked are punished after death? Sweat? Unbearable pain? Walls burning around you? Screaming? Earth? A spiritual realm of evil and suffering…. When you think of HELL… What crosses your mind?
To define Hell is to say the lack of love. No love. Imagine a world without any love at all. Hell is a place where all the love leaves the world. Where helping others is not a priority… ever. Not a thought that crosses anyones mind. Only getting to the top of the top matters. Survival of the fittest. Surviving for nothing. Family doesn’t matter. Men do not protect woman and children. Murder. Rape. Woman abandon their children on the side of the road to grow up and survive on their own. Hell is not a fictional place written in a book where lava flows at your feet, as you are dancing in place with the devil.
To define Hell is to say the lack of love. No love. Imagine a world without any love at all. Imagine your world without any love… without Compassion… without Forgiveness… without Service… without Friendship… without Companionship… without Trust… without Sacrifice… without Commitment…
…without God... Then you are truly imagining hell.
Endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable Rights, among these are Life, Liberty and the pursuit of Happiness
As I am sitting here, drinking my coffee, I find myself reminiscing. Just thinking about life. My life. Looking back five years ago, three years ago, even last year – where I am, what I am doing today – this is not where I had imagined myself at. If you told me a year ago that this is where I would be, living at home with my mother, and that I would be happy about it – I would have laughed at you. I would have gone as far as to call you crazy. “My mom lives in Ohio. I am never going back to Ohio. Have you lost your mind?”
I know what happiness feels like. It feels like wanting to be awake. It feels free, lifted of any burden. It is the feeling of contentment AND the motivation to change.
A short five years ago… I was at a strange time in my life. I was selfish and self-seeking. A huge part of me still is selfish and self-seeking. If you asked me five years ago what was important to me, I would have answered very different from what I would tell you today. My priorities included money and myself. Not family and friends, certainly not God. As far as I was concerned then, there was no God.
However, I was hungry for something more. An adventure, and an adventure I would most unquestionably get.
It was around December 2008 that I had decided I needed to move to Florida. I had no family or friends in Florida (yet), but doggone it, that’s where I needed to be. Lucky for me, a photographer I had worked with in Toledo, Ohio knew a friend in Destin, Florida who needed a roommate. It was a ways off from my original plan of Miami, but Florida is Florida is Florida – and that’s where I was going to be!
Four years ago today I was still in Ohio, my car had broken down and drained all the money I had saved to move to Florida – it looked hopeless (as it should be very obvious to you now, nothing stops me from getting what I want – not even money or the lack thereof). I just didn’t believe I was going to make it out of Ohio alive. Then it dawned on me, the love of money controls everything. This love for money controls your thoughts and actions. It caused fear and uncertainty. Doubt. If there is one thing life has taught me, it is that I have no time for doubt.
A second thing life has taught me? That I have no time for bull sh*t.
So the next month I hopped in my car, let my boss know I was taking a week vacation to Florida (which required me to put everything I owned and could possibly fit into my car…) and I made the drive. The photographer’s friend still needed a roommate, and I conveniently needed a place to stay. Just for a week, right? While I was here on my week vacation, it occurred to me that I would also need a job, wouldn’t I? Seeing how unemployment was at an all time high, I was shocked to be hired at the first place I applied.
At this moment, I realized – I should probably let my boyfriend and work know that I am not coming back.
Three years ago from today, I was very far from where I started this post and equally far from where I am going to end it. I was unhappy and married. Not necessarily unhappily married, just married and unhappy – and the two may or may not go hand in hand.
That’s probably an exact thought I had three years ago from today.
I was getting ready to go to my morning serving job and then preparing my other uniform for my night serving job. Work. That is what my year consisted of. Work and sleep. It was then that I found out how happy you could be while you were dreaming, and how angry you could be when someone woke you up.
Shortly after, I had an epiphany – you didn’t have to be asleep to dream.
Two years ago I was training to run my first 5k. I hate running. I hate exercising in general. I ran most of the 5k, and walked the last bit. Let me assure you, this was an accomplishment. Not necessarily one I was proud of. Yet, an accomplishment still the same.
However, it was just like the year before, filled with the never ending excitement of sleep. At this moment it was impossible not to have imagined a rejected future, but also I imagined a life of many countries, of vast and enduring adventure, of walking, riding, and driving in foreign places.
Just one year ago from today – more recent, yet still just as unreachable as any other event in the past; I was getting ready to go into Carrabba’s for work. I was sure to work as many hours in the night as I could, and sleep the rest of the day away. I would find myself sleeping until 2 or 3 in the afternoon. I was most certainly depressed. Some people turn to alcohol, drugs, television, or other addictive behaviors to tune out the reality of life; I sleep.
I sleep, because in my dreams I am able to make up a reality much more suited to my overactive imagination and vain ambition.
It was this summer that I planned out what was to be the most epic road trip of all time. My plans were a facade (a word with which I know the meaning, but butcher the pronunciation of every time). Planning was the dreaming I could do while I was awake, at least until I could escape to the solace of my bed. It was everything I talked about, wrote about, and thought about. “The Trip.” It was going to take me away from whatever nightmare I felt I was living through, and it was going to be memorable.
The trip was most certainly memorable, but I learned the nightmare wasn’t one you could escape simply by waking up.
Then there is today. July 20, 2013. Had you told me last year that a year from now I would be living with my mother, and I would be happy, you would have been right. However, Ohio would no longer be her home anymore either. The place I am at now is happier than I could have imagined for myself in the buried chaos of the last five years.
What I find even more crazy is that a year from now a stranger will pull this blog up, read this post, and then think to themselves what an odd person wrote this blog – and then that stranger may realize that they were indeed the author of this blog, just a very different version of themselves.
It seems that every day that passes nothing appears to change; yet looking back, nothing is the same.
Trying to recollect the steps down memory lane,
wondering if my futile attempts are in vain.
One would think,
The past would remain,
to drive one insane.
Was it this way or that?
Changing by the tip of a hat.
Within a moment of time,
one would look at a line.
within a rhyme.
Does God bless you for making the biblically moral choice ? (even in the ‘smallest’ of decisions…?)
Today, I broke the law. In my head, I justified my criminal behavior, from a sinner’s perspective, by saying “it’s not that bad.” Now, I know what you are thinking… (or do I?) “Who did you kill?” Oh! I mean, “What did you do?”
Well, since you asked; We have overstayed our welcome at a certain apartment complexes parking lot, and were asked nicely to move. Not once, but twice by two white stickers pointing out “Your truck tags are expired”. They even offered to tow our truck to the nearest impound at our expense! How nice of them! Well, I decided I would save them the hassle, by moving the truck myself. Now, I have AAA… and towing is free. Yet, I live just across the street from said apartment complex. From there, I weighed the time commitment (of waiting for a tow truck) to the consequences (slim-chance of getting pulled over while driving a vehicle with expired tags) … and the Consequences won out. Whilst driving said truck, a question crossed my mind, backed by my little knowledge of the Bible… “Does God bless you for making biblically moral choices… even in the ‘smallest’ of instances?” The reason I ask, is because while driving the truck across the street “wasn’t that bad”, the bible states (in fewer words) to submit to civil authorities and obey the laws of the land... (1 Peter 2:13-17) So from there, I wondered to myself, “Am I disobeying God’s will for me because I chose immorally?”
So I leave you with my thoughts, would God have blessed me if I had chosen the more righteous path? and the answer… Blessed are they that keep judgment, and he that doeth righteousness at all times. (Psalm 106:3)
(Does this mean I am going to hell… No! Because thank Jesus Christ, God’s only son, who came here to carry my burden, and unjustly die on the cross, to defeat hell, and rise again so that sinner’s can have a relationship with God)
*This is an old writing that I am publishing on the blog. The message itself is still relevant.
I am so happy that throughout my youth I never had the desire to test drugs. Specifically speaking, the hallucinogens.
“Why?” You ask.
That is a very good question. If I were to have experimented with said drugs, I probably would have ended up in a mental hospital. You see, I have a very vivid imagination. So vivid, in fact, that sometimes I have a hard time discerning what is reality and what is fiction. Let me explain to you how I have concluded this fictional scenario, in which I would have sent myself to a mental hospital if I had experimented with drugs during my youth.
Last night I decided to drink an entire cup of coffee; 150mg of caffeine. Caffeine; a white, crystalline, bitter alkaloid, C 8 H 10 N 4 O 2, usually derived from coffee or tea: used in medicine chiefly as a nervous system stimulant.
Since I had surgery to remove my appendix, to cope with the pain I have been taking lora-tabs; may cause drowsiness, dizziness, blurred vision, or lightheadedness. In other words, for me, it knocks me out cold. I, innocently enough, mixed two very opposite drugs.
When I was finally able to fall asleep, let’s say, around 1am, I drifted off into a world that I was not familiar with. I began dreaming. (I am going to rabbit trail for a moment, and tell you this dream because it was really quite terrifying)
There were two ‘main’ characters in my dream.
A boy, who was depressed and suicidal, probably in his early 20s, living at home with his mother. This boy felt he had nothing to live for, and began to develop schizophrenia. The only person he ever talked to was a girl, she had shoulder length brown hair, and she didn’t really exist. The boy somehow managed to get a girlfriend, she had blonde curly hair. But she was more of a bystander in the dream.
In the same town as the boy, there was a man named Lyle, who was quite a vile creature. Lyle spent his days selling drugs, importing over illegal foreigners to sell his drugs, completely destroying the town. Lyle also raped a girl, continually, throughout her entire life, and unfortunately, throughout my entire dream.
Now, with those two characters being stated… Who would really want to continue to participate in this nightmare? The problem was, every time I tried to wake up I would “wake up” but I would still be sleeping. I was dreaming in a dream. And when I would ‘wake up’, I couldn’t move. It was almost like I was suffocating… and I would try to reach over for Adrian, but I couldn’t move. And I would grunt, and try to cry out, and I would hear Adrian acknowledge me tiredly, “Are you having a nightmare?” But I couldn’t get out of this dream like state. And above my bed was a man, a demon like man, with the most terrifying gray eyes. He wrestled me to be quiet, and I couldn’t move. I was sure I was suffocating… Then I would drift back into ‘sleep’.
The town had no real authority. There was a main bar, ran by Lyle, where street thugs with big guns ran the show. Across from the bar was a gas station/mechanic repair shop where Lyle and his drug dealing thugs hung out. The boy was losing his mind in this very messed up town. The non-existent girl told him to go into the bar and start killing people. So he took a gun, and headed for the bar. But the boy didn’t want to hurt anyone. The imaginary girl was insistent that he start shooting people… But the town was filled with innocent people as well. He aimed his gun at the imaginary girl, and he shot her. And when he pulled the trigger, the ‘cops’ showed up, but they were too scared to get out of the car. Since the cops showed up, the thugs pulled out their big guns. The boy couldn’t believe he shot the girl (even though she didn’t really exist and no one else could see her), so he shot himself. The thugs went crazy with the blood lust, and began shooting everywhere. They sparked a fire, that caught on some leaked gasoline from Lyle’s gas station, and the place blew up. Lyle and all his thugs died. The girl that Lyle kept hurting was free. My dream then told me everything happens for reasons that we just don’t understand. But it was sick, and twisted.
Then I ‘woke up’ again, I couldn’t get away from this demon and his gray eyes. He was suffocating me. It was so real.
Now I can see it on your faces, “What on earth does you having a nightmare have to do with taking steps with Christ?”
Finally my twitching woke the real Adrian up, and he drew me up from my sleep. But I couldn’t close my eyes. Every time I tried to close my eyes, I saw those gray eyes. I was sweating, and I was scared. It was so real. I couldn’t calm myself. I kept trying to say I know God is with me, I know his good angels are here protecting me. I even prayed out loud, which is hard for me to do. Begging God to please take away these doubts, and these gray eyes. I was in tears, I was so scared.
Adrian said, “I really feel like God is wanting me to tell you this, ‘Give your thoughts and vain imagination to God.His warrior angels are here, and they are protecting us.‘” My prayers for help were heard by God, and he spoke through Adrian for me, with that verse, “Casting down imaginations, and every high thing that exalteth itself against the knowledge of God, and bringing into captivity every thought to the obedience of Christ“; 2 Corinthians 10:5
I felt the Holy Spirit, I felt him washing away my fear of the man with gray eyes. Feeling the Holy Spirit is huge for me! Before I couldn’t even think of the demon that was haunting me without shivering in fear, but now I could think of him and it caused me no fear. In my head, I decided to celebrate! I wanted to be quiet because I knew Adrian needed his rest. I was pretending there were balloons everywhere, and I was nodding my head back and forth dancing. I had taken a step with Christ, I trusted God to take away my fears… and even though, at first, there was doubt… God spoke to me through the bible verse, His word… and my fear was gone just like that. I celebrated, and decided I was going to continue celebrating. It felt good celebrating the step I had just taken with God. Usually I don’t give the steps I have taken a chance to really manifest before I start worrying, “Well where is the next great feeling? What do I do next? Am I not worshipping right?…” etc
Admist my celebrations, Adrian woke up to tell me, “I had a weird mini dream. I think it was Jeremy, but someone handed me a piece of paper. And when I opened the piece of paper up, it said Paid.”
(Not to much later we received a letter in the mail, the entire $60,000 medical bill was paid for. God is Good.)