Archive for the ‘Feelings’ Category

h1

Square One Blues

May 31, 2007

So right now I am feeling down.

Several areas of my life are back to square one: My roommates are gone; My life is now falling back into place after being turned upside down, first by having my sewer line collapse, and then by having my back yard dug into a trench to replace it; and the second service has been launched at church and that campaign is over.

My roommates are gone.  Yay, I have my house back to myself, well, after I clean up the mess that they left behind.  I do have consolation that I have some free gifts that they left behind that I probably won’t throw out.  Will I do the roommate thing again? Probably not, but we’ll see how my giver spiritual gift handles that one.

My sewer line has been replaced.  This one is a relief, an aggravation, and a blessing.  This is a relief because I can actually do laundry, dishes, showers, and other normal sewer related activities without worrying about having flooding in my basement.  However, I am aggravated at the plumbing company for leaving things undone (I have a big section of concrete missing from next to my house, my deck/patio is in the middle of my yard, and I am not sure on whether or not they plan on reassembling my fence where they removed it).  But all in all this experience has been a blessing and a learning experience.  I am blessed that I was able to replace my waterline at the same time for a fraction of the cost of if I were to get it done later, and it really needed to be replaced.  Also, directly from this experience, I was able to make some great connections with “curious” neighbors, and I even became pretty decent friends with one of them.

The second service campaign is finished–well I still need to salvage some of the pieces from it.  However, with it concluding, I feel as though I am loosing where I fit in.  Sure I am a good designer and I can design, but I think I am realizing that, like a/v, I don’t enjoy it as much as I thought, but it aggravates me more when it is done badly, and so I find myself doing it (my administrator is clashing with my server).  Perhaps this is a temporary phase, since several simultaneous things are going on right now and in time things will likely smooth out and taper off, however right now, whether it is real or imagined, I feel like I am being belittled out of an opinion because I am at a different, “unacceptable,” stage of life, caught in a black hole between the “college students who must know” and the “experts of 15-20 years who have to know.”  Perhaps this is just an area of hidden pride that I need to resolve and all these reasons for me being pissed off are just a figment of my imagination.  Anyways, I feel like I am loosing my place in the puzzle; that the puzzle is changing to something that I don’t fit into, and it’s bringing me back to square one, for the hundreth time.

To top it all off, I am into my second week of my late night shift.  Hopefully I can get my biological clock set to a new timezone soon.  I’ll be on nights for a while, so once I can get my biological clock moved, I should be a lot happier with life.  It is quite probable that these square one blues are partly due to my lack of quality sleep.

Thanks for reading.  This blog was mainly written to help me clear my thoughts.

Have a great rest of your day.

~CrazyCoolCam

h1

Breaking the Chain

March 24, 2007

One of the most interesting ideas that I have heard in a while I heard last night. It involves how we are tempted, or more specifically what Satan is “allowed” to tempt us with.

Take for example the Biblical story of Job. Satan enters and requests that God allow him to tempt Job, which God does grant on a limited basis each time.

Another is a seeming recurring temptation theme within families over several generations. Perhaps the sins of the father are carried on with the sons. For example, Abraham’s trip down to Egypt and his lying about Sarah being his wife. Not long afterward the same thing happens to Isaac, Abraham’s son, when he travels down to Egypt too. He lies the exact same lie.

Another example is the weakness that David had with women, is carried out and also quite evident when just looking at the number of females in his son Solomon’s life. These hundreds of females ended up being Solomon’s downfall.

So how does one break free from a generational sin.

Perhaps the first step is realizing that it is a sin, instead of rationalizing it in one way or another. Our minds, coupled with the cunning of the devil, can come up with numerous rationalizations to justify the continuation in the sin.

After acknowledging the sin, the next step is asking for forgiveness from both God, and anyone that you may have wronged with the sin. This forgiveness can help humble us and mend relationships that may have been strained because of the sin.

However this is where most of the resolving ends, which is both bad and sad, because the one thing that is left is the temptation to re-enter the sin. The devil is both patient and persistent, and he will bombard us with both rationalizations and the temptation until we end up falling back into it.

So is there a way we can break this chain of hereditary temptation?

I believe there is. I believe there is a third step, one that may have been forgotten, but more likely, one that the devil convinces us to put aside.

What I found interesting from this idea is that there are only two individuals who can grant Satan license to tempt us: God, and ourselves.

In the case of Job, Satan gets his permission from God to do the tempting.  Why did God allow it? Job asks the exact same question, but the response isn’t one he really likes.

So what about ourselves? Why would any of us even want to open the door to temptation?  Perhaps something has fed us a lie that we need something within the sin to make us complete, which couldn’t be further from the truth.  Perhaps it doesn’t come from us internally, but the doorway is someone else in our lives, someone who wants to push us into something.  It might even be generational, when the sins or weaknesses of the parents end up being the same struggles of the children.

The third step, and the one that will break the chain, is to acknowledge in spoken prayer (so the universe can hear as a witness) that you acknowledge and renounce the [sin/temptation/failure] in your life, that you ask God to break the stronghold that the sin cause or was a part of in your life, and that you ask Jesus “to take back the ground that was given to the enemy” through the [sin/temptation/failure] and that that you yield that ground to His (God’s) control.

This is a pretty simple prayer, but I am a testament to it working in my life.  It is this prayer (well a variant of it) that helped me break free from my bitterness.  It is also this prayer that helped me break free from another temptation that I have had for a while.

Since I don’t know the extent on how far this blog will be read, I am not going to elaborate on it.

It has been around 24 hours since I prayed the prayer about this sin, and from almost immediately afterwards until now, I have had no temptation in this area.  I also have no reason to believe this area will be a problem for me, because I have no intention of ever making it a problem for me again! If the temptation returns, then I will have some words directed at God about it, but I don’t expect that to happen.

I know this works because it has worked in my life.  If you are struggling with something, I encourage you to pray this prayer and to adapt it to your specific issue.  God wants to help you break the chain, and so do I!

h1

Starting from Scratch: An Update

March 20, 2007

During the past few weeks, the prepress department (my work) have started “upgrading” our system to a new, and supposedly ‘better,’ one.

What began with the supervisor and another worker being gone for a week of training up in Canada, has now blossomed into a brand new system, fully installed and almost completely set up and ready to use, and when I say “new,” I mean we are changing everything, well everything except for the most problematic device (one of the printers) which is another story/rant in itself, and a relatively new processor that doesn’t need changing since it was updated a year ago with this system in mind.

We are ditching the server, all the printers (minus the one I mentioned in the previous paragraph), and the plate-setter, which is basically everything I deal with on a day-to-day basis.

This has made work more stressful and more time-consuming than normal. It is also one reason for not as frequent blogs.

However, another thing is starting new too—me.

Last night I hit another hole in my heart, or to put it more specifically, I ripped another hole in my mostly healed from bitterness heart. While before it was bitterness inside, this time it is pride. While I had done the workbook exercises on the pride thing a few nights ago, they really didn’t do a whole lot for me. I believed I was honestly asking God to help me from the heart (vs the head), but nothing was really happening. Maybe a sliver of feeling here or there but nothing significant, like I was expecting in an area that I knew was an issue with me.

But last night I had an epiphany on where the root of my pride is located. I, more specifically the workbook, wasn’t worded correctly for my situation, and I needed to ask God specifically for help in a specific area only broadly touched upon in the workbook.

From what I can tell, my pride is rooted somewhere in my need to be recognized, which drives me to be better than everyone around me, which usually leads to either impatience with those around me, or that I subconsciously place myself above them, viewing them as inferior in whatever way I succeeded in. Then when I wouldn’t be recognized for my hard work, it flipped around into either resentment/bitterness for not being recognized, or me getting caught in the trap of self-pity that easily landslides down a very steep hill.

Do any of you know where I am coming from here?

Well knowing about my problem is half the battle, and to be perfectly honest with all of you, I really don’t think I can do the other half on my own. I am not even sure where to go from here. Obviously, I need God and all the help he can give. He is probably the only one who reach down there to the roots of this pride, and so while I am keeping my inner-ear open to him, tell me if He prompts any of you about something for me, either in person or here on this post.

So tonight (one night later), I am writing this, and declaring I am starting from scratch, but unlike work, where the buggiest piece of equipment is the only thing not being replaced, I am set on cleaning things up right the first time, and any help any of you can offer would be much appreciated.

Will it be as seamless as work is going? Probably not, and that isn’t saying much, because the transition at work has so far been anything but seamless.

Will I stumble? Probably, and I will probably outright fall too, but that isn’t the goal. The goal is becoming who God wants me to be, and I know it isn’t a bitter pride-filled person so I do know I am moving in the right direction.

So with all that said, thank you for reading this blog and thanks-in-advance for any advice, whether it is lending me a hand or an ear, or any other Spirit-prompts meant for me.

h1

My Pride and I

March 17, 2007

Pride. I have it. You may or may not have seen me with it. I think it has masked itself pretty well, at least to me, behind a cloud of bitterness and skill, with a touch of rebellion in the mix.

Several weeks ago, I went through some steps to help me resolve bitterness in my life that I was carrying from my past. I even wrote a blog shortly afterwards about how my heart disappeared into a black-hole emptiness feeling.

Now, I come to the next large rock in my path: Pride.

Tonight I learned that there are two different types of pride: Obvious Pride and Hidden Pride. Obvious pride, the one usually associated with the term, is focused on myself and on lifting me up. While saying I am good with computers or with sound equipment is probably not prideful, saying that I am the best in this area, or that I am better than you are, is.

The other type of pride—hidden pride—is a little harder for me to come to grips with, mainly because it is where my pride is mostly at. Hidden pride is pride that focuses on me and on my pain. It is when I become so self-centered on myself and feeling sorry for me that I can’t relate to others.

This defines me pretty well when I am feeling either agitated or depressed. I like throwing a pity party for myself whenever I am especially down and I’ll either end up turning overtly antisocial, or if not that, I’ll mope around, often times sub-consciously trying to pull others down to where I am at.

Pride even embodies a remarkably similar characteristic that I experienced when I gave up my bitterness, and it rang a bell to me, really alerting me of this fact, which happened when it got described like a black-hole-like effect. Pride ultimately wants to suck all the attention from others to me, which ultimately ends up leaving them dry and me not full.

Perhaps the bitterness from my past helped give me a blind-spot or distraction to me realizing my pride issue. Perhaps it is pride that is keeping my heart from fully healing my pain from the lost bitterness. I really am not sure. It may very well be both of the above.

I do know that pride is a key, quite likely the most common one, that will lock up any chance of resolution for any of the other areas of our lives. It is up there among the big three or four hard hitting issues that face everyone at one time or another.

However there are several (very likely more than I list here) Biblical principles to keep us from becoming proud:

1. Never draw attention to your achievements. — Proverbs 27:2 (I personally have a hidden pride issue in this area specifically that I am going to deal with.)

2. Do not view yourself too highly. — Romans 12:3, 16

3. Always give God credit. — 1 Corinthians 1:29

4. Focus on loving others and not yourself/myself. — 1 Corinthians 8:1

5. Reject every thought that exalts itself against or above God. — 2 Corinthians 10:5

6. Work towards humility. — James 4:6

I’m sure there are way more, but I’m sure you get the point: Pride isn’t good.

I am convinced now that this blind area of hidden pride in my life, coupled with miscommunication, are the main reasons for my not having many relationships, or many close friends.

Perhaps, after doing the exercises to free myself from this sin, I will finally be able to feel healed inside.

I’ll keep you posted.

h1

I’m Lonely: (I’m Out—pt 3)

March 12, 2007

Is it possible to be contently single when everything around seems to scream “Find someone!”? Almost everywhere you turn, there are things marketed toward either couples, or suggesting that hooking up is the goal; many colleges around sport unofficial slogans to the effect that one goes there to get their future spouse; and, the goal of virtually every fairy-tale is that Prince Charming questing to find his “beauty” whoever and wherever she is. Is it possible to escape or effectively ignore all this non-sense.

Just now, in another tab of my browser, I have an ad blaring to me “Girlfriend season is here.” Maybe this is what has plagued me during every spring for most of what I can remember. After all, late winter though summer vacation is “girlfriend season” in my mind. That is the school-year hookup time “so couples can get together just in time to look forward to a summer apart vacation” irony (since it usually ends in breakups via long-distance), but with this, and virtually all forms of media blaring this message comes the realization that only once during this time of year did I have a girl-friend.

I am not going to back on my statement/resolution to wait for God and staying “out” of the scene (that I stated in pt 1 of this set). I have had my experience with looking at the “smaller signs” and it ended up not working out, and so this time I am going to stick to my original plan.

Some days/nights/weekends are harder than others, and I know that’s a fact of life.

At any rate, this is just a stream of thought.  It hasn’t fully been thought through, and I am not sure when or if it will ever be.  Thanks for reading.

~Cam

h1

Missing the Little Kid & Most of My Heart

February 27, 2007

This past weekend, I wrote a blog about the start, or pre-start, to my dealing with the bitterness in my life. Saturday night I began the workbook “homework” and while writing out and praying about the specific areas of my past, I came to realize something: Most of my heart is/was rock-heart because of bitterness.

At least that is what it felt like. After praying about just the first of the two broad areas of my life, I felt like most of my heart was gone; like there was a hole inside of me, specifically where my heart was. It felt like over half my heart was missing. On Sunday when I finished up the workbook exercise (by writing down and praying for the second broad area of my life), I am not sure if I even felt a heart left, just a big hole where a heart should be.

Also after praying, I felt different, but in a different way. The little kid I wrote about in a blog a few weeks ago, the one inside of me that made me feel like a big liar or that I was going to be found out, was gone, or at least I couldn’t feel him anymore, and so far, he hasn’t returned. It’s like something in my prayer scared him away.

Maybe I was trapped semi-mentally at an age around when some of the earliest emotional drama I can remember happened, and when I cleared it up (by forgiving from the heart for good, and taking responsibility for the feelings I had), it freed the little kid inside of me to grow up. How much will he grow up? I am not sure, since I don’t feel him inside anymore. If he comes back, it’s likely that he will be much older, or maybe even about the age I really am. 🙂

The workbook instructions say that I should pray over my two sheets (one for each broad area of issues) for 30 days. I am currently on day two or three. I am not sure if I feel a heart reforming/healing inside of me yet, aside from knowing that the black-hole feeling in my chest is where my heart should be. It will probably take all thirty days to heal. That would definitely stretch my patience, but it wouldn’t be unrealistic, since a good portion of the core bitterness that was locking my heart up, I have carried for over half my life.

So now, if you happen to see me in the next week or two, you will probably be looking at a mostly “heartless” Cam. You will also be looking at a Cam who really has no clue how old he is inside.

In closing, and in praise, I will say that so far, I have not felt any bitterness about any of my past experiences, and while a few things today at work are aggravating at times, I am not resorting to bitterness towards them like I use to. Maybe all this specific prayer is helping to change me and my attitude towards my life. 🙂

h1

How having a best friend when I was young didn’t screw me up for life.

February 24, 2007

A select few of you have followed my blogging back to close to the beginning, and if you remember, a while ago I wrote a blog about how having a best friend when I was young screwed me up for life. (This was during my myspace blogging days and so it isn’t in the wordpress archive.)

Well I was wrong.

I did have a friend, a best friend, who ended up stabbing me in the back. While at camp one summer, my whole cabin of campers (which included him) decided that I would be the one to harass, and while I won’t go into specifics (which included some pretty twisted stuff), I will say that I was very hurt that he joined in some of the hurting, and just did nothing for the rest of it. He openly made it clear to me that here at camp, he would be my friend, but only as long as it was apart from the rest of the cabin of bullies. I am not sure where the counselor was at the time, but needless to say, no correction happened. It ruined my week and I ended up calling home to have my dad come and pick me up on Friday instead of Sunday.

Tonight marks a changing point in my life. I feel that this event is one of the things that has caused feelings of bitterness inside, bitterness that I may pass off to other sources, but very likely a bitterness that kept me from having many close friends ever since than.

In fact, if I have had a close guy friend since that point, it has only been one guy, maybe two, but our lives have drifted us apart. I have some great friends from high school and college that I am meeting again via myspace, but I am now beginning to see more clearly how this rooted bitterness lead up and contributed to not really being able to open up towards guys ever since that point.

I also remember that shortly afterwards, while testing the waters of trust and friendship, another potential guy-friend openly blabbed a “secret” to the whole school, and so in part, that closed me up even further.

There is no way for either of these two individuals to even come close to repaying the emotional debt that I feel they might owe me, but it doesn’t matter anymore because I am assuming their debt. Here in this blog (and in the workbook) I am stating that from this point onward, they don’t owe me anything. I won’t state their names here, because I know and God knows who they are.

To add another group to this, I also forgive and will assume the debt for a small group of “friends” who during my freshman year of college came to me and told me that they no longer wanted to be my friend. That event stabbed me hard and in the same place as when I was younger, perhaps maybe even harder. From this point on, I am releasing and assuming any debt I feel that this group owes me and no apology is necessary. Like before, I won’t state their names, but God and I both know who they are.

I encourage any of you who are reading this, that if there is any unresolved bitterness or resentment in your heart towards someone, stop feeling like they owe you something, because once you can give up a little pride and forgive them of their debt, those feelings will vanish.

This is the first step in a process that I am going through to help clean up any emotional baggage I might be dragging around from the past. I don’t know if I’ll write blogs about all of it, but for those of you who know me, this process will most likely revolutionize me as a person.