Emily is 26 and has just gone through a horrible separation. Her husband was physically abusive, hooked on drugs and alcohol and verbally abused her in front of their daughter almost every day. It was the same way her father treated her mother, and the same way at least three boyfriends treated her in high school. She started to see me for Memory Processing because her current boyfriend started hitting her and calling her names.
Which brings me to this question: why is it that certain people go through the same treatment in life over and over again. There is no sense that they want this is there? In order to answer that, I have to go to one of the tenets of lie-based thinking. In LBT, a person doesn’t just believe something, but that belief also colors the way they act toward others. It affects how they will interact. It affects what they will put up with and what they won’t,.
But, and here is the crux of the matter for Emily, what we believe about ourselves is often what others come to believe about us as well. If we are firmly believing that all men will hurt us or take advantage of us, or lie to us, or all women will cheat on us, or hurt us etc., that is often what continues to happen in repeating patterns.
As Emily went through Memory Processing, she noticed the beliefs about men were consistently lived out, even with men she had only known casually. It never happened with any of the women in her life. Since getting rid of the lies, she doesn’t run into men that try those things on her any more. It brings up another axiom of life: Healthy people tend to attract healthy people, and unhealthy people attract unhealthy people.
Later on this year, I hope to have my book published on hearing God more effectively. The working title of the book right now is “Listen Carefully” which is why I have called the blog that as well. From time to time, I will post excerpts from different chapters to get your feedback. Some of your feedback may even help me with the book itself. Even if you don’t comment, you will still get the first glimpses at it.
Here is an excerpt from Chapter Three which is titled “The Spirit Bears Witness”:
I have conducted this experiment with large groups and with individuals. I have tested people with this on buses, planes and park benches. I even have done it over the telephone with a 20-year old soldier in Iraq who was just coming off her shift. In the vast majority of cases, the result is not only the same, but afterwards produces the same result. This is not a secret therapy or a zen-like practice. It is actually just a question.
I ask the question if someone says they want to know God better. So I always ask “Do you want to know how God feels about you?” If they answer yes, I ask them to calm their heart and simply receive whatever God has to say as I ask the question: “God how do you feel about this person here?”
I don’t even have to poll the readers of the last paragraph, for the vast majority reading this will know what answer they come up with.
They hear God telling them “I love you.”
Psychology tries vainly to explain this universal thought pattern. Since most people suffer from poor self-esteem, their own thoughts would lead them to a much different conclusion. The world around them is a cruel, dog-munch-dog existence and therefore the daily grind won’t initiate that thought pattern. We all admit to a level of incredulity when it comes to how God must feel about us. After all, shame is endemic to the human condition for everyone except a few basketball players and comedians.
So how do you explain “I love you”?
William James might say that it is simply wishful thinking (though I doubt he would use the words “wishful” or “thinking”…most likely he would settle for “phenomenological experience of induced emotional potential”). But the certainty and frequency of “I love you” stands in direct opposition to that theory. There just aren’t that many wishful thinkers out there.
The Bible does give us an explanation I can live with. In Romans 8:16, Paul says, “The Spirit himself bears witness with our spirits that we are God’s children.” The word in Greek for “children” is a word which denotes a young child, beloved by the parents. This is not a designation of an heir or a short inhabitant of the house. This is a description of a child that suggests intimacy of relationship. The parent loves this child. And it is just that message that the Spirit of God bears witness with our spirits.
To those who are just coming to this blog, welcome to the site. It is dedicated to two subjects: Hearing God and Theophostic Prayer ministry. Of course, the two subjects are closely connected, so we may go back and forth between the subjects. I will be devoting much time to this blog (compared to the other one), so feel free to add your two cents worth more than at the other site. Some of you are fairly shy…it will be much easier to know that there are only about 25 people on this blog as opposed to over 700 at the other one.