Hey. I’m Zac. Lately I’ve been wondering if I might be going crazy. You really need to be keeping an account of your thoughts if you spend time wondering things like that. You’ve got to take every thought captive. And, you have to know what to do with the thoughts once you’ve apprehended them. I’m in the process of attaching training wheels to my mind (probably my whole being really). I haven’t taken very good care of my mind over the 33 years I’ve been on this earth. I think it’ll be for the best to apply the breaks a little, and much more carefully navigate my way through this strange period of my life. I’ll do some blogging for my own mental health (and for my own enjoyment). I’m blogging for my own mental health enjoyment.
I want to explore, understand, and navigate my own mental health as a redeemed person. If that last part was for you an unanticipated qualifier, it’s just to say that I’m a Christian. My point in disclosing that often spurn inciting information is that my efforts to explore, understand, and navigate my own heart, mind & soul can’t be undertaken in some willy-nilly fashion. I’m broken. I’m not able to be the captain of my own ship. I’d sink that black pearl quicker than you could say “where’s the rum gone?” I need help from the unbroken. In other words, I’m taking all my diagnosis & prescriptions from the Great Physician.
As a follower of Jesus, I’m being ever so slowly & painfully sanctified. I say that as confidently as I can. It is happening. It must happen or I die two deaths. I’m seeking to actually enjoy the process, no, to love the process of mortification and vivification. In the words of the Mandalorian:
“This is the way”
The Westminster Shorter Catechism (something of a set of training wheels for the redeemed) says that the ‘chief end of man’ (the highest purpose of all human beings) is to glorify God and enjoy Him forever. So, as I write stuff for my own mental health, I want to write words that glorify God, and testify to my enjoyment of Him as I keep my mind accountable in all its movements and stirrings. In particular, I want to write words that help me to enjoy Him in this fallen body of death that I am bound to while I wait (with all the saints) to see it glorified on the last day. That is to say, that I am no friend to my flesh. Well… That needs to be questioned actually. I’ll deal with that later.
A Christian is someone who is being renewed by God. Lately, my mind has not buzzing with what I would call ‘renewal’. All I’m seeing is mortality, death, rottenness in my being. I need a rewired mind. I believe that’s my only hope for a sound mind. Just to be clear, my hope is not in sanctification itself but in the Person who can do it in me – I need the mind of Christ. I also believe there will be deep, supernatural joy to be found in the midst of this mortification and vivification. Again, not that I need a thing called joy but that I need to find the joyful One. I say all this, but has it really clicked in my heart?
“The heart is deceitful above all things, and desperately wicked: who can know it?”Jeremiah 17:9
I long for evidence of vivification! Should I be able to feel it? I’m sure I’ve felt it in the past… Ugh! This place is so hard to wallow in. The stench is unbearable. Isn’t wallowing supposed to be somewhat enjoyable? The pig seems so happy! Lies!
There is this One who stands with me through it all however, who does not seem at all repulsed at the sight of me in my pit, but has genuine affection and grace for me. Why do I constantly respond to Him as though He were lying? I should let Him drive this shouldn’t I? I should let Him rescue me. He knows what He’s doing. I need Him to do something drastic in me, but I feel like I’ve forgotten how to ask Him. Maybe I never actually learned to do that. Oh man I need help. I need surgery, and I want to be awake for it, so that I know the work is being done. I don’t really understand what I’m asking for.
I’m also a student at a theological college. I’m not of the opinion that this has contributed to my feelings of mental/spiritual discombobulation. Now that I have convinced you of that we can move on. I’ve been told by my lecturers that some of my essays read like ‘stream of consciousness’. I had never actually heard of that genre of writing before receiving that feedback. I wonder whether the lecturer was being kinder than he needed to be, as I’m pretty sure my writing reflects very poor planning and a lack of discipline. I suppose my ‘stream of consciousness’ writing would also reflect a confused and muddled consciousness if that were indeed the case. I’m okay with taking that risking that at the moment. It’s not a good idea to take those kinds of risks in academic essays though, trust me. Anyway, ‘stream of consciousness’ writing sounds cool, doesn’t it? I’m drawn to cool. I’m unique like that.
I’m sure I’ll cringe at much of what I write here when I re-read it in time. Have you ever read your old Facebook posts? In any case, I want to continue with the whole ‘stream of consciousness’ thing as I reckon it might be a more accurate gauge on where I’m really at, rather than trying to come across as a skilled writer. I don’t wanna lose my edge you know? And, I don’t want to add delusion to my discombobulation. I’m so glad I’m not suffering any delusions. Anyway, journaling seems like a good way to track growth.
E g o d e a t h .
I’ve got to learn how to die to myself better. There are no shortcuts. Here’s a not-so-random fact: Entheogens won’t achieve true ego death. Only those in Christ can really understand what it means to die daily, and yet live. It can only be done in and by Christ. According to Paul the Apostle, I died in/with Christ by faith on that old rugged cross nearly 2000 years ago (Romans 6:6). The question is: am I currently living more in the corpse that was done away with and buried in baptism, rather than living in the Living One – Jesus Christ, who was raised by the very Spirit of Life on that glorious day of the Lord?
“For if we died with him,2 Timothy 2:11
we will also live with him”
I’m going to do some circling of the drain each day as I try to kill off the rottenness in my heart using the means God has given me. Here’s a question I have a quick answer to: Q. Who has rescued me from this body of death? A. Thanks be to Christ Jesus, who died, and yet lives. May I be found in Him.
This blog is for my daily dying – my daily circling of the drain.*
*May not actually be a daily blog… However the dying daily really does need to happen:
“Born twice, die once. Born once, die twice.”Dunno