Saturday, May 12, 2012

Good News!!

Well, at the end of this month I will be 1 year free of co-dependant relationships!  That is good news! I have not been free sense jr highschool......I refuse to tell my age, but that is a long time! I have had a couple of set backs, got mad at God, and struggled through parts of this past year.  But, in all honesty, I have never really been this free, for this long, in my life.  Even though it has been a tough year, I still feel chains falling off of me with each day I move forward.  There is a part of me that is really afraid to announce this. I still look over my shoulder and ask myself, "Is this really happening?"  I am still not as strong as I wish to be, but I am also not in the same place of weakness that I used to be. I am moving forward. My goal right now is to address a couple more of my addictions like food and sugar.  Eventually, I want to be baptized (again) in the church that I have been attending for over a yr now. I have already been baptized, but there is something about that public declaration that did not have the same meaning to me that it now carries.  I see the cross through a different set of eyes. I see glimpses of Jesus that I have never identified with until now. I still have mountains to climb, but I am learning that this is one step at a time. One day at a time. One moment at a time.

Wednesday, April 25, 2012

Memoirs of a depressed, almost schizophrenic, bipolar woman who wishes she were more like Jesus!

Yes, folks. That was a long winded title. I just read my friend Terri's blog. It was so hilarious and inspiring. It made me take a more light-hearted approach to my fallen humanity.  I just reread my last blog post and it was very depressing.  However, even in the melancholy, (which I have discovered to be my temperament.....I know that will come as a shock to the general public), there is hope. And somehow it is the melancholy that becomes the road to recovery.  It is painful. I am finding, (well for today that is, wait til tomorrow rolls around and Tammy 2 takes over and I want to jump off the Chattanooga bridge), that Jesus came for the sick folks. Not the well ones. So, that,  I am qualified for.

I have been reading my bible again......which is a switch from being angry at God because of the circumstances that I have faced recently.  I love the way the Message Bible describes Jesus in Isaiah 53. "He embraced the company of the lowest,. He took on His own shoulders the sin of the many. He took up the cause of all the black sheep."  I also love the way the Message bible interprets Matthew 9 starting at verse 11 or so, "What kind of example is this from your Teacher, acting cozy with crooks and riffraff?"  Jesus, overhearing, shot back, "Who needs a doctor; the healthy or the sick? Go figure out what this Scripture means, "I'm after mercy, not religion."  In other words, I think what Jesus is really saying here is, "I would rather you repent (truly be sorry for your sin) than do the right thing, just because you know that is what you "ought" to do.

I think what those scriptures mean is, that the road to redemption is paved with suffering. It just is. And the suffering is looking our sickness in the face. Jesus did not come to create another bunch of religious garb. The Pharisees had already cornered the market on that. He came to make us Real. And part of that becoming real is facing who we really are and asking God to remove the cancer. Jesus compares Himself to a doctor and a doctor cannot cure anything until he first diagnoses the problem. I think about the scriptures where David cried out in Psalm 51, that if it were sacrifice (or one might say religious piety or knowing the right thing to do) that You desired, then I would offer it. However, David concluded that sacrifice was not God's aim. His aim was repentance......a broken and contrite spirit.....David cries, "that oh, Lord, You will not despise."  

I carry this huge weight on my shoulders when I begin to see the depths of the depravity and the sins that I have absolutely no remorse for in my life. It is a fearful thing. But, somehow, this is the answer I have been searching for. The answer is learning to hold that sense of depravity and fallen humanity up to God as my sacrifice to Him and plead for mercy.  Part of true Christianity is embracing the cross and part of that embracing, is trusting God to save what is completely unsalvageable without His grace--namely us. My prayer then, has to become, "Lord save me. I trust You to do what I could never do. That is why you came. You came to love the black sheep like me, until I break." Lately, my prayer has been that God would do whatever it takes to break my stubborn will.

A friend of mine made a comment that I found to be very interesting.  The other day, I was trying to explain the gift of the holy spirit to a friend of mine who did not fully understand what was taking place in a church service that I had invited her to. This woman is desperate for more of God. I said to my friend, "just keep an open mind about this. Even though you don't fully understand something because of things you have been taught, just keep an open mind and pray." I used an example from my own life, I said, "For example, all my life I thought God to be this mean, wrathful, judgmental God. And if you read the old testament, there are scriptures that will make you think God is really that way."  And she answered me this way, "But, Tammy, doesn't anybody ever look at how evil the people God was dealing with were."  That was profound to me.  I thought out loud, "No.  I guess I have never looked at it that way before. I have always looked at those things as God being mean."  I realize that there is a lot of controversy over old v/s new testament God.

At the risk of not entering into a theological debate, I want to keep this simple. My friend's answer was simple and childlike. "But look how evil the people were."  I am finding out that I never really want to take a hard, cold look at myself.  I begin to sulk, complain, whine and/or become frightened when God wants to whisper to me that I am wrong about this or that. There is a stubborn and proud part of me that shuts down when I misbehave and act out. Lately, I am finding that I hate what the bible says about loving your enemies. No. No. I would much rather, (like James and John), call fire down from heaven. Or, like Elisha, when people made fun of him for being bald, he just whipped up a lion or some wild animal to devour them. Was that even in the bible? I don't know. You better check. Okay, I checked. It is in the bible- 2 kings 2:23. Elisha got mad at some kids for calling him bald and put a curse on them in the name of the Lord and a couple of bears came out of the woods and devoured them. Bam! Problem solved!

I mean, come on. How cool would that be?  My next really bad PMS day, when someone smarts off, I just whip up a bear to eat them. That would be the coolest thing ever. People piss me off already! I get angry when people talk down to me, and ironically, that same thing has happened to me, over and over lately, from different sources. Each time I did not respond in christian character, let me tell you. No. Once, I got into a verbal brawl on the phone with someone who totally pissed me off.  All I needed to do was remove that WWJD bracelet around my wrist and start cussing.  I fumed the rest of the day and contemplated reporting the person for discrimination.  Oh. My. So, you see?  It takes grace to not just profess Christianity, but live it out. But, I believe that the power to live like Jesus begins with: "God help me. I am wrong." I am saying it takes GRACE when you are afflicted, and feel justified in your wrath, to practice christian character. But, I am trying to, (one moment at a time), to ask God to help me put on the humility of Christ in these circumstances where Tammy wants to cuss their ass out because they deserve it! 

Lets face reality, sometimes people deserve a real good cussing, from a professing Christian, just to have someone to hurl "You hypocrite," accusations toward. I am being sarcastic. I should not be cussing out anybody. But, I say to myself, "Self, you only live once, so, go on, and make a total ass of yourself. Everybody will notice, including Jesus, the angels in heaven, and the hall of faith in Hebrews, and that is always a real encouragement." BTW I don't wear one of those WWJD bracelets because lets face facts. Some days, that would be such a downer, when I act like a devil. Perhaps I need to wear one. Not around my wrist, but around my heart.

Did anybody get anything out of this? Hopefully, it was not a real downer. But, if it was, chalk it up to my melancholy temperament and forgive me.

Thursday, April 19, 2012

Lets talk about sex, love, and God

 I am not going to bother to put a disclaimer here because my friends who read my blog already know that I am weird; thus, it won't matter. I am going to say some confusing controversial usual writing style.

I have been thinking a lot lately about the word "love" and what that means to me. Normally, what that word means is linked with some romantic fallacy, some "high on emotion notion." It's returns are worth less than the stock markets lowest drop! I am typing in "jumbledness." Bear with me.  To me, sex and love don't jive together. To me, they will never. They are two separate entities.......if I can call them that.

To me, sex mixed with love is blasphemy. Yeah. There. I said it. Yeah. I also know that is not scriptural and I also know that God ordained man to be fruitful and multiply and blah blah blah.  I did not say that sex was not pleasurable. I suppose it can be labeled a lustful appetite. Sure. I will agree to that.  I can't really go into all my reasons why I reached my view of sex here on this blog, but I don't so much have a very high opinion of the whole thing.

But, I have love and sex all mixed up and I wanna know what REAL love is and in my mind it really has nothing to do with sex at all. I am currently listening to (while I am typing this) to an 80's song by Foreigner, "I Wanna Know What Love Is." And that is my thoughts right now. Not toward any human being. Toward God. I wanna know what love is. I left church last night with this sense of "let down." I overheard a leader in the church complaining about another person saying, "I am tired of fooling with her. She is going to have to get her act together. I am tired of babying her."  I am not angry at this leader.  And I am trying really hard not to lose any respect for her. I realize that she is human and I don't know all the circumstances surrounding this person she was referring to. I know this person is human, but I still feel this let down.

Maybe I sound judgmental. I don't mean to be. Really, her statement made me look inside myself. I thought to myself, "Are you any better?"  And the honest answer I had to come up with was, "No." I thought about the comments I make. I thought about all the mean sarcasm I use about others, and how if they heard me, it could hurt them deeply. I thought about my own cruel remarks and jokes and how NOT funny it can be. I sit sometimes and I think about hurting people who may be so broken that they are on the verge of dying and I pass them by everyday. 

Where is love? If love is not in sex, the Foreigner songs, the fairytale romance movies with everlasting love endings, and if love is not even in church folks, WHERE IS LOVE?  Love is in God. Where is God then? God does not seem to be in me. I appear to be too self centered to love anybody but myself.  Writing this blog is hard because I am angry. I am angry at myself.

Wednesday, March 28, 2012

7 X 70

I started today rereading a book I read last yr by John Bevere, entitled "The Bait of Satan." The book is about becoming offended, unforgiveness, and holding grudges. It is really a powerful book....if only I have ears to hear. I am reading this book and seriously trying to open my ears and heart to God once again. I have become blinded by pride and arrogance, and I know this. My heart condition is not really about what someone else did or did not do. It is about me, and the nasty person that God sees me becoming.

There was a point where I thought things were fine and I was not offended at anyone. I was over this. But, part of me fears that this last relationship did something irreparable in me. I feel such a coldness in me, that it is frightening. So, I am crying out to God for help. I can't get past this.

It is time to start over once again. I feel like Peter after Jesus asked the whole bunch if they wanted to leave too, and he replies, "Where else are we gonna go? Only You have the words of life." I feel so weak right now, that I am not sure that I can even utter, "Lord help my unbelief." But, I hope God can hear some part of me that can't communicate.

Wednesday, March 21, 2012

Daily Inspiration: NOT!

I downloaded a book today, called "100 quotations to make you think!"  The book is about optimism. Of course, I altered a few of the points to suit my mood. So here goes:

"The difference between an optimist and a pessimist is that an optimist thinks this is the best possible world. A pessimist fears that this is true." ( I am not really sure what encouragement this has to offer. Hmmm)

"A Kiss is just a pleasant reminder that two heads are better than one." ( Ahem. I have a rebuttal to this. Obviously, the sappy person who wrote this complete falsehood, lived in some alternate version of reality other than this one.  Undoubtedly, Mr or Ms. Sappy, had never kissed a cheater, or they would not view two heads to be better than one. No. No. I beg to differ!  Whoever dreamed up this brilliant quote should have to take a lie detector test after being cheated on. This particular quote was the inspiration for my whole blog. )

"Though no one can go back and make a brand new start, anyone can start from now and make a brand new ending."  ( Okay, that sounds real nice and all, but tell that to the builders of the Titanic. I don't think they would agree with this optimism. )

"The greatest oak was once a little nut who held its ground!" ( Ahh. Now there is a quote I can live with. Perhaps there is hope after all. )

Monday, March 19, 2012

Another old Gem............

This is the joys that running into my cheating ass ex brings.  Does that sound very Christian of me? No! It does not. Ahh it is so good to be alone!