Tagged: Jesus Christ

Indiscretion, Comfort and Strength

“The Lord comforts the afflicted and strengthens those in trouble.” – Psalms (paraphrased).

It has become increasingly difficult for me to perform my work here on Heart of Flesh. The Gospel of the Lord Jesus Christ should be a source of comfort and joy to all who trust in Him. If there be no comfort or consolation then we should be seeking to address that according to Biblical principles. (see St. Paul’s writings to, I believe, the Romans of ancient times.)

I have been severely indiscrete in my words, especially online, and I have made confession of this to the churches. Many have been harmed by my words, behaviours and discussions. Yet I truly believe, in Christ, that many have been comforted, though I myself am now lacking in many respects. (Often I have come to resent that, yet joy returns and now, increasingly, peace, and the love of the Spirit is growing again within me.)

Music and Magic

Many in the world now place a lot of trust in music. Music is, indeed, beautiful if used correctly. It can calm, comfort and bring relief from pain, especially the emotional sort we see in mental health problems. Yet it can also cause untold harm.

Some, such as a few from my own family and neighbourhood, have suffered enormously from loud music of an abhorrent nature. Yet those days are long past, though my connection with the distressed (both mentally, emotionally and physically) means both they and I feel great pain when the wrong music, substances or spiritualities are mixed.

A confusion can arise when words are misinterpreted. For example, in the Book of Revelation, St. John writes about repenting of “sorcery” (KJV) or “magic” (NIV). I will make little further comment on that here (that is a teaching for elsewhere) but suffice to say that these practices can cause intense hardship for many, especially the vulnerable. (And I myself have had very recent experiences of both.) Music and ungodly spiritualities, as well as violence and substance misuse, all play a part in magic and/or sorcery.

Repentance and the Church

The Church contains secrets. “The secret of the LORD belongs to the LORD.”

Not all are willing or able to be a full part of church life. I know some (very few, though) who struggle at church due to demonic possession, whether presently or in the past. As I have stated repeatedly and verbally, I know those I love in both the church, the World and amongst the mentally ill community. (And I say sorry here to those I have been unable to in person regarding any harms, temporary or permanent, caused by me.)

Many who suffer from mental illness do so due to mental turmoil (often treatable through such practices as mindfulness, meditation or medication, not all of which I agree with) yet some do, indeed, suffer from demonic possession. Thankfully, according to my belief and the belief of many others (in my experience), we are in a time of great healing.

Yet it remains true that the words of Jesus Christ the Righteous Messiah are constant, and He states that “None come to the Father except by Me.” [God is present in Three Persons; Father, Son and Holy Spirit, an Eternal Co-Existence of the Godhead, with Jesus being the fullness of the Godhead in bodily form.]

Moya Brennan and Enya, formerly of Clannad. The theme of Robin of Sherwood, a favourite TV programme of mine own.

Healing and Salvation

The word of God is vital. Yet many now confuse matters by conflating healing with the good news (Gospel) of Jesus Christ. Healing comes through Jesus Christ if it be true. Medications (such as cannabis, properly prepared, valerian, taken correctly, and certain other herbal medicines) can help, as can many spiritual practices.

Others, however, are harmful. I myself have made my repentances and keep to that which I need. Others also have their coping mechanisms. The Truth of God’s Word, the Bible, must endure, yet I personally believe that many should be allowed their own ways of coping.

Demonic Possession and Healing

There are two primary methods of healing (apart from the Teaching of the Word) in the Church: the laying on of hands (corrupted in the past into “faith healing”, an erroneous and dangerous practice carried out by spiritualists) to heal physical ailments, and the casting out of demons. I am untrained and little gifted in either, yet I have practiced “deliverance ministry” to varying degrees of success.”

May the Lord of all Creation; Father, Son and Holy Ghost, bless you and keep you this Day. – Mark H. (of a Heart of Flesh in Truth.)

A Hard Day’s Work

Being mentally ill is a hard and dangerous journey.

I do not have the time to relate all that I have been up to this past day – or rather, I have much time but need to be resting and continuing my Bible study. At this present time I am having my stolen dinner 😉 and my borrowed chariot ( https://open.spotify.com/track/2jwQd3JoZk4obcyI18lMY9?si=jE1ylixPR92idPBMyeJp3Q ).

The journey this past day has been full of light and blessing. I received some hard discipline from dear brothers at church yesterday, both in the morning and evening. I am unsure if they realised how hard ot was or how fruitful it may prove to be. Who can truly know but God Himself? As for me I remember my prayer at the beginning of this journey: “As for me and my house, we will serve the LORD.”

Mental Illness and Fasting

Yet I suffer from a profound mental disorder. I began an Advent fast according in time to the Anglican calendar but according to strictness closer to a mix of Ethiopian Tewahedo and my own fleshly desires. According to the Eastern Orthodox teaching, the mentally ill are not only warned against the practice of fasting but are also usually precluded (forbidden) from doing so. During my period of Advent fast I spent much time in the psychiatric ward, and the resulting drunkeness on food, distressed souls I sought to help and the holiness of God within me caused great harm to those ill-equipped to cope. Yet my continuing hope, along with an intermittant faith and a love no-one really quite “gets” keeps me going. In short, I depend upon God; Father, Son and Holy Spirit and at times only brothers, sisters, mothers, fathers, friends and allies are able to provide for my most basic and vital spiritual and bodily necessities.

The Struggle Within and the Struggle Without

What is your own struggle? Is it to maintain a faith amongst the righteous when you are a sinner? Is it to cope with a self-righteousness which only a brother can nail down rightly? Is it to cope with an indwelling sin or the sins which others have placed upon you? As the Apostle Paul says: “We have been crucified with Christ.”

In his book Slave by John MacArthur he writes:

Slaves of Christ are to be “always abounding in the work of the Lord” (1 Cor 15:58), “trying to learn what is pleasing to the Lord” (Eph 5:10), and ever seeking to understand what the will of the Lord is” (Eph 5:17).

Slave by John MacArthur. Copyright 2010. Published by Thomas Nelson

The mentally disturbed can rightly be called slaves of Christ if they routinely confess their sins, seek to “fight the good fight of faith” and remain in fellowship with the brethren within the Church. Yet it is a battle. A huge battle.

Advice, Hope and Limitations Learnt

I was advised by a dear brother and sister yesterday about being careful about what I post online. I have now largely abandoned Twitter and abandoned YouTube, radio and television some time ago due to the temptations and false teachings they brought. Yet I know others can find comfort in those things. So who can truly judge? God, and He alone.

I spent some of the afternoon of Monday with some very ill people. There was a disabled person, some Down’s Syndrome people, some with learning disabilities and some I discerned were truly possessed by demons. Yet there were saints with me, in uniforms and out. Not all who belong to Christ confess Him openly. Some live in catacombs of the shadows. And that is the role of the mentally disturbed people of Christ.

Holiness and the Winding River of Mental Ill Health

We are, according to Jesus Christ Himself and the writings of many – though far from all – of the historical saints, called to live lives to holiness and undefiled purity. This is acheived through the Cross of Christ, yet, as a brother evangelist told me, sometimes this is an up then a down and sometimes a down then an up.

Sometimes for those with ceratin conditions the road is far more narrow and winding: a great river or a narrow stream; one which flows out into the Oceans of Faith rather than leading upstream to the pleasurable springs of pure refreshment. Remember that the rivers and streams and seas were not always as polluted as they are now and the rivers and oceans of the true Faith shall never be full of dead fish and bones but that even the sea shall give up her dead.

The ill, the demonic and the saints I had to leave be. I spoke words of confession to a friend and servant, words of comfort (I hope) to an employee and made and offer to give low paid casual labour in return for their kind shelter they have been and I hope shall continue to offer me.

And I met two true brothers this past day. One openly. One a beautiful surprise which prompted me to remember the poor I had been forced to pass by whilst in town earlier.

To Conclude

I end my day of work greatly blessed, still hungry, still drinking water, tea and coffee and still smoking tobacco (though less now that was the case yesterday). And so, with my confessions and, I hope and pray, my encouragements done, I shall now seek to continue my Bible study.

My Testimony of Trusting

Simple trust and love.
Image credit: https://pixabay.com/en/children-road-distant-supportive-1149671/

When I first started writing these testimonies I wrote many words of my experiences, feelings, shames and boasts. Yet as the prophecy of Agur states in Proverbs 30: “If you have done foolishly…lay your hand upon your mouth.” Besides, much of those long testimonies were riddled with hypocrisy and judgementalism.

I have, in too many ways to relate, been acting like a fool in my life. Yes, through it all I have clung to God the Father, Son and Holy Ghost, the Blessèd Trinity or, rather, He has clung to me. Hope is only found in Jesus Christ and in no other and forgiveness for sins can only be found through His atoning sacrifice upon the cross. Life eternal can only be attained because of His resurrection.

Over the past few months I have been through much. Because I have truly believed that recourse to psychiatric medication is only a short-term solution to a problem of eternal significance and that the transitory comfort such medication has brought me has only led to an imperviousness to the abhorrence of my sinfulness I chose, willingly, to come off my medication over a year ago.A word of caution. The time I am in now is not to be laughed at or taken on lightly. In many ways I’d want to increase my medication – I am now on a low dose due to a verbal agreement with my doctors and nurses – yet I know that the final judgement comes from God and I desire to do what I can to face what I must now rather than when it becomes too late to repent of my many sins. Yet it remains true I believe, that many of us who suffer from mental illness need some comforts in life. We have had a very hard road and some very hard things to deal with, whether that be childhood sexual abuse, violence or have even experienced worse things in this short life we’ve lived. I have chosen my path and you must choose yours. Do not choose to take mine – coming off medication – out of a foolish thought that you could cope when I am only barely surviving day to day and there are only a few times of blessed relief and comfort from the Lord.

Yet I still cling on to the promises of God contained in His word: Scripture reading, good Christian music and as much fellowship with the saints as possible is helping greatly.

Jesus died for us, whoever we may be and whatever we may have thought, said and done. Trust in Him and Him alone, for He is the Rock of Salvation and He loves you.

These verses have both disciplined me for my lack of these qualities and have also comforted me, so I share them here:

“Love suffers long, and is kind; love envies not, love vaunts not itself, is not puffed up, does not behave itself unseemly, seeks not her own, is not easily provoked, thinks no evil, rejoices not in iniquity, but rejoices in the truth, bears all things, believes all things, hopes all things, endures all things. Love never fails.” 

1 Corinthians 13:4-7.

(Note: Scripture verses use the KJV Bible yet I have modernised slightly if the words wouldn’t be understood by many in this present day.)