Remaining Present & The Great Spiritual Battle
I am stairing at a blank page, wondering what my theme for today's post ought to be as I am without all of my various inspirational texts! I packed the One Year Bible with some Christmas ornaments, lights, gelatin packets, Keto Kreme and Salted Caramel Keto Broth and sent it media mail to Mom's place. I figured, if I'm going to be away from my husband and our apartment which has some decorations up, then why not brighten up my Mom's place as well? The One Year Bible is a fat book, so I sent it along with the rest of the goodies to avoid needing to check my luggage.
For Day 1, introducing this series, click here. Day 2, Go Out on a Limb for Me, here. Day 3, The Dancing Mind, here.
The theme that comes to mind is the pursuit of remaining present. Learning to respond rather than react. And, how the mind, and our physical senses is viewed by Christians (and the Vedas) to be under the domain of Satan (or sub whatever other term) rather than God. We need to understand how our mind works to avoid the potential for self-sabotage, and veering off our path. So let's look at this.
When I contemplate the entirety of our impending decisions, I easily get overwhelmed. It's quite daunting! Do we relocate to be near Don's family, taking my Mom with? Move closer towards my sister in the Pacific NW, so Mom can be near us both? Or stay in Arizona? Each area has it's pros and cons.
Then, we have to contemplate, can we live with my Mom? If so, it would keep us from having to use up her long term care insurance. She could live well past what the policy provides, so extending her finances is important. Yet, she is more extroverted, we are introverted. She wants continual social companionship ~ which I understand ~ yet we sit in silence for extended periods working on our respective websites and content creation.
If it's too quiet, she goes crazy. If there is constant television ads, and all the 'programming' running non-stop, we go crazy. We haven't had cable, nor a t.v. for most of our entire time together.
Anything that is missing, is of course our fault. We 'took' it. Her mind plays tricks on her. She can be totally sure of certain things happening, even if they didn't happen. It is common for people with dementia to get stubborn. Some get belligerent. My Mom thankfully is mostly a joy, yet her limitations reflect her life choices and habitual mindsets. Note to self. Start brain exercises!
And of course, there are continual questions. Within seconds of saying something, it's forgotten. It's frightening. She knows she has issues, yet as is often the case, she knows not the extent. I can spend hours answering questions, only to have it all forgotten by the next day. It can eat up my time and energy reserves! Not to mention my patience!
How do I remain present? How can I best serve, with an open loving heart? How do I remember to not take things personally, not get too frustrated? All things that are easier said than done!
Witnessing a loved one go through dementia or memory loss reminds us of how fragile our mind really is. Who is running the show when the synapses get fried, or stop connecting?
So, what about the notion that our mind and senses are under the domain of Satan? I have come to understand this perspective, because our eyes and senses can fool us. Ask several witnesses to a crime scene to report what they saw, and each will recount something different. The movie industry is predicated on making things seem real, even when they are not!
Our ego can easily cause us to feel superior, or inferior. We can get stuck in our stories, and be totally misled by erroneous beliefs, and empty promises. We are not given a rule book on how to understand and best use our mind. Everyone has experienced going a bit crazy or dark at different times. The mind is powerful and can be a force of good or evil; a creative force, or source of major destruction!
Satan could be defined as anything that is not of the Divine Natural Order, or Logos. Anything that counters God, or influences us to choose darkness over light is going against God. If God is Natural Law, Satan is anti-Nature. If God is a state of perfection, then perhaps being overcome with anxiety, depression, and fear is NOT our native state, even if it has become 'the norm.' So, if my Mom or anyone becomes filled with anxiety and fear, is it possible that in those moments, evil or dark spirits have taken up residence? The late Derek Prince believed so, and created an entire ministry around delivering people from Spirits after healing his own life-long debilitating depression.
Some may argue against this, yet as I've toyed with these thoughts, I have found it to be a helpful practice.
Poor health has become the norm, yet it isn't necessarily our birthright. Perhaps we are meant to be vibrant, brilliant, radiant, whole, and holy as we were made in the likeness of our Creator. Fear, depression and anxiety are unnatural states, even if widespread. So, if whenever these lesser emotional states consume us we immediately 'rebuke' them as evil spirits, it can teach us how to more fully realize our most illuminated state! We can learn to reject depression, anxiety, and fear, and affirm that we are whole, healed, and holy beings. Tony Meyers healed from being wheelchair bound, and shares his beliefs that we are meant to be healed, not sick in Unlocking the Mystery of Divine Healing, available on Kindle. His first book, The Lord Jesus Healed Me, The Journey of an Atheist to the Truth, which I have not read yet, describes his condition ~ paralyzed and dying ~ and miracle healing.
Anytime our lower ego fills our mind with self-doubts, and less-than optimal ideas, and we accept those thoughts as true, and act accordingly, we are not living out the truth of who we are. We are living out a lie. Satan deceives. He takes us off our path, continually tempting us to go rogue. To go away from Truth, or Light. He tempts us with the shiny sparkly things. Or promises of wealth, fame, power, an easier life, comforts, sex, or whatever works.
In each moment we have choice points. To acquiesce or stand strong. To do what is more difficult because it is Right, or to take the easy way out. To react, or to respond. To act out our impulses, or rather Satan's influences, or rebuke his sly temptations. We can align with our lower ego, or our soul's truth, Satan or God, the dark or the light.
I never used to believe that life was a battle between good and evil. I always believed that man (humans) were inherently good, and that how we evolved was influenced in part by genetics, and in part by our environment. However, after years of traveling down never ending rabbit holes, I have come to accept the Christian beliefs that our earthly domain is a battlefield. A spiritual battle field. We either succumb to Satan's temptations, or we choose to hold fast, and remain a strong spirit, or warrior for the light.
So, I see my challenges as opportunities to practice remaining present, patient, and heart-centered. To rebuke Satan, and turn towards the Light.
If I can remember ahead of time that some day, she will no longer be with me, then I can do my best to cherish each moment, and remain more present. I know I will miss those moments of frustration one day!
If I look ahead, and maintain that perspective, my heart opens. I feel myself being infused with an amazing peace and love that overflows. In these moments, I feel closer to God ~ or what some may call the Holy Spirit. It has already provided me far more comfort than the total of every New Age self-help book I have ever read.
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