Scorners Have a Certain Power

 

I finally broke through and realized that I am a consummate scorner.  I have cultivated this for many years, and especially the last five.  I will tell now, I am to scorning as Tiger Woods is to golf.  I have been diagnosed with Hepatitis C, a durmoid brain tumor, lung issues with a chemical accident, manic-depression requiring extensive hospitalization, and a low thyroid requiring meds.  And, on top of this, the death of a newborn daughter.

My faith has been extremely challenged through all of this.  I have pastored a church and taught classes at a local Bible college, all with a lot of enthusiasm and purpose.  My students and my congregation were being blessed.  But all of this pretty much disintegrated around me and I found myself with a whole lot of nothing. 

Scorn has never been anything I gravitated to.  But it has ‘seeped’ into my thinking, through a slow and steady presence.  It works like mercury poisoning.  It has touched me as a gradual toxin, slowly sickening me with its constant contact.  I haven’t been connected with the light as I should have.  But over an extensive amount of time, a venomous and noxious filth has been introduced into my heart and my thinking.  It must be like watching someone die from ‘radiation sickness’.

To scorn means to become ” ‘competous’, disdainful, scornful, to mock.”  I never, ever dreamed I would be brought to this point.  But life has continuously rolled over me, and I find I just can’t make it work anymore.  I definitely do understand the promises of God.  But I definitely do not understand God’s grace on me.  But you might as well try to explain the color ‘blue’ to a blind man.

I am Bryan, the scorner.  I am also ‘a spiritual beggar’, with a significant mental illness.  I should be on the streets pushing a shopping cart and drinking cheap vodka.  When I start to scorn, I get mean and cynical.  I’m contemptuous and I sneer at whatever crosses my path that day.  I hear voices and ‘tune in’ radio stations.  All I lack is a ‘tin-foil’ hat, which I have seriously considered.

My depression molds my thinking, and my despair rules the rest.  The promises of God are not for me, and they seem to always be out of my reach.  In many ways, I am an ‘unbelieving’ believer (there are many people like us).  My own frosty coldness and hardness never seems to amaze me.  I don’t want to be this way.  God, help me please.

A defining word, for people like me is this: “self-forgiveness“.  I consider myself above average when it comes to forgiving others.  I look forward to forgiving others.  But, I just cannot forgive myself.  I simply can’t let myself  ‘get off the hook’.  At times I do sense a comfort and a peace over these sins, but very soon they begin to rub me raw.  Like blisters, or ‘a stone in my shoe’, I begin to limp again. They are incredibly persistant.

This is not self-pity.  I am not looking for any manner of attention or warm hugs.  I do though want to open up my darkness so the light gets in.  I must learn to forgive myself, if I will ever walk clean.  This is imperative.  The adulteress who fell at Jesus’ feet and wept managed to forgive herself of a great deal of sin.  Those of us with mental illness/addictions have to come to this same point.  Is Jesus’ love enough to cover me?

Published by Pastor Bryan Lowe

A repentant rascal with definite issues, but who is seeking to be authentic in his faith to Jesus Christ. An avid reader and a hopeful writer. Husband and father. A pastor and Bible teacher. A brain tumor survivor. Diagnosed with clinical depression, and now disabled. Enjoys life, such as it is, in Alask.a (Actually I have it pretty good.)

5 thoughts on “Scorners Have a Certain Power

  1. Your honesty is quite remarkable, Brother. Reading this was like reading Romans 7 in a modern format.

    I know it’s quite easy for me to appreciate the struggle from a considerable distance — not having seen it up close nor in the day-to-day — but, in many ways, your words are miraculous to me.

    You’re running the race, Bryan. To the finish line. Even though you stumble and fall and even scorn and have a such a hard time sometimes…

    …the victory is yours. The Most High God has promised.

    And there is none higher than The Most High.

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  2. Bryan, I take it you and the mirror don’t get along so well. For what it’s worth, I remember well a dear hospital chaplain consistently reminding the patients to “be gentle with yourself.” My translation of this is a mirror exercise. When you look in the mirror and give yourself the critical “what-for”, when finished doing this, look again at the face that stares back and give it eyes of compassion, the kind of compassion you might envision coming from Jesus.

    I have often wondered if there is a connection between our ability to love ourselves and our ability to love others. And have wondered if the connection is direct. Can we truly love another if we’re not real crazy about ourselves? A philosophical sort of thought not intended as a criticism or critique of others and their motivations, but born out of the wrestlings of my own self-loathings.

    Let’s not forget our royal lineage, made in the likeness of Him!! 🙂

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  3. Your blog today reads like a Psalm of David….Rescue me, O Lord. Don’t believe the enemy’s lie that scorn defines you …. your writing reveals your heart after God and your soul being filled with Light.

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  4. I don’t understand how it is so hard to forgive myself, when I can now forgive others of the worst offense. A friend told me that my unforgiveness was idolatry because I was holding my sin higher than the cross, ouch, that hurt. I couldn’t muster enough forgiveness from my own so I had to use the forgiving power of Jesus and discard my own understanding of it. It is a daily struggle but as I have, many doors have been shut that the prowling enemy of my soul had been coming into and running a carnival of self hatred, accusation and scorn.
    I’ve been getting alot of help from Kempis’ Imitation of Christ. This week notably Book 3, chapter 6, – 3, Do not let any strange imaginations that crowd into your mind trouble you, no matter what they are about.

    His love is all we have.

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  5. I love the point you are making in this. You have helped us by showing first we have to recognize it , that this is what we are doing. Thank you for taking us to Jesus, so He can cover us.

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