Faith – how strong is it?

First… define

  • Faith:   Faith is the complete trust or confidence in someone or something.
  • Trust:  Trust is the firm belief in the reliability, truth, ability, or strength of someone or something
  • Confidence:  the feeling or belief that one can rely on someone or something; firm trust

Faith is SO powerful it can change you PHYSIOLOGICALLY.

First example:  The placebo effect is real and has been shown to repeatedly occur in controlled tests by leading scientific studies. As long as your brain believes that your medication will work then it likely will. Pretty crazy right? It seems like our brain is willing our body to heal through the power of our faith in a sugar filled dummy pill. The craziest thing of all is this: even when we realize that it is just a placebo, the effect continues to work. The placebo effect isn’t just restricted to pills either as it can be found widespread in your life.

Research suggests that for psychological reasons, some placebos are more effective than others. Large pills seem to work better than small pills, colored pills work better than white pills, an injection is more powerful than a pill, and surgery gives a stronger placebo effect than injections do.

http://ajp.psychiatryonline.org/doi/abs/10.1176/appi.ajp.159.5.728

The Placebo Effect: An Interdisciplinary Exploration, By Anne Harrington

Ted Kaptchuk of Harvard Medical School studies placebos.pdf

Placebo Effect works in 2 ways.   If I have complete confidence in stories that I have manufactured based on my world vision and my choices and my experiences what I believe will come true.

“Is it worth it? Is it true?” -Andy Stanley

http://ncommandments.org/doubt-not

Mindfulness – it is important to be aware of my thought and choose to control where they go.  Choose to focus on hope when I am down.  What I am in now is not forever.  Faith, Trust in the negative will assuredly drag me down.

Try it!  Return to my old ways and see…

We all once lived in the passions of our flesh, carrying out the desires of the body and the mind, and were by nature children of wrath, like the rest of mankind.

Instead of waking up:

  1. Start the day… instead of Praising God and his awesome creation intentionally choose to meditate on ugly things (the weather, mess in the house, bad drivers, messy yard, house repairs that need to be done, taxes)
  2. In all social interactions, instead of looking for the best, try to look for the worst, assume all comments are criticizing, insulting, demoralizing
  3. At every decision during the day – instead of asking ” how can this Glorify God by bringing people together in relationship with God and in one huge community of church,”  –  instead, make decisions that break relationships,  Gossip, tell secrets, put down colleges behind their back, make negative comments about co-workers, computer systems, processes, policies, people.
  4. Instead of thinking of each experience as an opportunity to glorify God see it as other people and nature being self-centered and trying to hold you back and putting you down.  See everything as “more work”.  Assume that no one notices your work.  Assume that no one appreciates you.  Repeat this to myself this over and over all day long.
  5. Instead of:

 

  • charity – self sacrifice helping others – ignore people in need, walk past, do not talk
  • generosity – instead of giving things to people – be intentional only take stuff
  • joy – instead of a happy disposition, keep as grumpy as possible, scowl
  • gentleness – be aggressive and negative.  Be loud. be rude.
  • peace – instead of looking for solutions to help others, try to show how much more smart and superior you are by making sure everyone knows how good you are.
  • patience – don’t wait for people to finish talking, don’t listen, don’t take time to understand their problems or point of view.   Honk horn as much as possible while driving. Tail gate.  Cut people off.   Take the inside lane and cut in.
  • modesty – instead of choosing to be humble.  Always tell everyone how great you are.
  • kindness – Don’t listen, dont help.  Be rude put down people’s ideas.
  • self-control – Don’t think about what you do and say before you do and say it.
  • chastity – sleep with everyone… actually… skip testing this one…

At the end of testing this in the meeting, the day, week, month, year, season in life…. What is the fruit?

Do you have inner peace, joy and love?  Do you have the best possible life?  Success?  Promotions?   Do other people go out of their way to help you?  Promote your success? Write good linked in reviews for you?  Is your job, marriage and relationships with family and friends long term and stable?

I must break the cycle.  I must start the day in prayer with a focus on the greatness of God and the awesome things he has already done.  Because of these truths and the knowledge that God has granted me the opportunity (free by Grace and His love) to have 1 more chance to experience life on earth.  While I know I will face challenges, suffering and people who are going to be doing some of the negative things above, it is all with a PURPOSE and a PROMISE!!!

2 Corinthians 4:16-18

16 Therefore we do not lose heart. Though outwardly we are wasting away, yet inwardly we are being renewed day by day. 17 For our light and momentary troubles are achieving for us an eternal glory that far outweighs them all. 18 So we fix our eyes not on what is seen, but on what is unseen, since what is seen is temporary, but what is unseen is eternal.

All my suffering here on earth is NOTHING compared to the eternal glory and joy waiting for me in heaven.

Keeping my focus, confidence, faith on this truth of a promise of eternal joy for eternity is enough for me to stay on point.  Amen.

 

 

 

 

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