Dabar [theme]

He shall cover thee with His feathers, and under His wings shalt thou find refuge: His truth is a shield and buckler
Psalms 91:4

Be it ours,when we cannot see the face of God, to trust under the shadow of His wings. C.H. Spugeon

Friday, January 08, 2010


As you read through my blog entries, it should be noticeable that there is a prevalent theme or thought which I am in the process of investigating. My topic list is rather extensive, however, the main impetus of this blog is the attempt to resolve for myself, personally, the faith/fear continuum. Whether I am talking about humour, God, father, love or any aspect of Christian life, I find at the end I am still seeking to define the relationship of fear and faith. In my life I find that there is a continuous connection or association between these two and there affinity affects every aspect of my life.

A Pastor of my Church, when introducing himself, told me that his favorite Bible verse was "I believe, help my unbelief." As a defining verse for that moment of his life, it gave great insight into who he was, who he wanted to become and where he was at. The verse which is currently defining and providing the force of my Christian life is 1 Cor. 13:13, "And now abide faith, hope, love these three; but the greatest of these is love." It is not my favorite verse. It really only serves to make evident the question. It is in answering the question that the stark realities, those things that I knew existed, yet were unidentified, have come to light. "We can easily forgive a child who is afraid of the dark. The real tragedy of life is when men are afraid of the light." Plato There lies in our heart and soul the memory of who we have come to be. "The defects and faults of the mind are like wounds in the body. After all imaginable care has been taken to heal them up, still there will be a scar left behind." Francois de la Roche Foucauld "It has been said that time heals all wounds. I do not agree. The wounds remain. In time, the mind, protecting its sanity, covers them with scar tissue, and the pain lessens, but it is never gone." Rose Kennedy There is uniqueness to life and experience and although my life is riddled with commonalities of all men, the unique identifiers are sui generis (one of a kind).

Identifying sources of behaviour, reaction, and relationship determinants is only part of the mystery of life. Most people never spend the time or have the resources to investigate. Identifying is only part - as one problem is uncovered and possibly solved - another is revealed - there is a constant folding of discovery, diagnosis, and dilemma, each one kneaded into the next - life folding and unfolding. The issue is not one of identifying - it is change; the relational schemas are in place; expectations and projections have evolved; life, faith, hope and love are locked.

The recent leg in the faltering crutches that form my life has been the discovery of yet another ailment of my physche. Sarcasm intended.  
Attachment disorder is the result of seperation from care-givers or the developed sense of detachment from care-givers who were/are neglectful or willfully ignorant. " Unresolved childhood attachment issues leave an adult vulnerable to difficulties in forming secure adult relationships. Patterns of attachment continue through the life cycle and across generations. New relations are affected by the expectations developed in past relationships. There is a strong correlation between insecure adult attachment and marital dissatisfaction and negative marital interactions. If an adult does not feel safe with others, he/she will tend to be either rejecting of their partner or overly clingy." "... individual differences in attachment representations are shaped by variation in experiences with caregivers in early childhood, and that, in turn, these early representations shape the quality of the individual's subsequent attachment experiences." As the earlier quoted verse states the resounding acclamation is love conquers all.
What if perchance, the inability to love; to form significant relationships with people was a large part of the make-up of a faith/fear continuum.
What if you could identify certain character and behavioural flaws in your psyche that were detrimental in developing and maintaining crucial and essential 'love' relationships. To be denied love creates an expectation of being unlovable. Where love is concerned and unrequited love at that, there must exist mechanisms to insure survival. These mechanisms come with a price tag. Intense anger; Hostility; Sensitivity to blame; Lack of empathy; Viewing self as unlovable; Relationships feel either threatening to one's sense of control, not worth the effort, or both; Compulsive self-reliance; Passive withdrawal; Low levels of perceived support; Often preferring to work alone; Work may also provide a good excuse to avoid personal relations; Fear of closeness in relationships; Unlikely to idealize the love relationship; Tendency toward Introjective depression (self critical); Feel overinvolved and underappreciated;  Sensitive to rejection; Discomfort with anger in others. These are the distinguishing variables predicating my love relationships or at least my attempts.

As an observer of my own self, I have some intuitive insights, I would classify myself as a dismissing-avoidant adult. Dismissing-avoidant adults, are able to use defensive strategies in an adaptive way. For example, in an experimental task in which adults were instructed to discuss losing their partner, Fraley and Shaver (1997) found that dismissing individuals were just as physiologically distressed (as assessed by skin conductance measures) as other individuals. When instructed to suppress their thoughts and feelings, however, dismissing individuals were able to do so effectively. Avoidant adults -- are either truly less distressed or their defensive behavior is a cover-up for their true feelings of vulnerability. I have often said that you cannot hurt me. The defense mechanisms I own are so ingrained, imbedded, evolved and effective they resist any and all assaults. To put it mildly, and admitting to their severity, they must. It is a 'must win' situation. This is indicative of a sense of insecurity, fear. Insecurity requiires distance or withdrawal minimizing attachment-related feelings and behavior.
Fear has no affinity with freedom. Fear has no affinity with security. Freedom and security have a kinship in love.

I live with a legacy, the leavings of childhood, adolescence and the imprints of life. Long after parents have died, school has ended and memories are fading with time, I will suffer from a feeling of low self-worth, the ecology of infancy, youth and experience continues to influence behavior, thought, and feeling in adulthood  ... a parent, teacher, classmate, friend told me how to think and act. I have become a master of isolation and desolation because I never spoke and shared my true feelings, I never risked because of the fear of a blow from a hatchet. I have become frozen by inflexibility, because 
I learned to tow the line or suffer the consequences. 

Hell is bottomless - it is sinking in despair, doubt, and desperation into a black hole - there is nothing offered to grasp; to break the fall; to cling to; because there is no hope. It is the place where the wounds of life are continually 'salted with fire', it encapsulates every aspect of life in which we did not attack life to restore and redeem. To find love.
Faith is the challenge to embrace God, who is beyond our limits and subdue the fear.
It is the rescue any and all men need. Secure and rescue share the same letters. God and love are synonmous. "God is love"

"Attachment problems are often handed down transgenerationally unless someone breaks the chain." There is a place for hope and faith in that "....existing representations are updated and revised in light of new experiences such that older representations are eventually "overwritten." This is faith's objective and God's provisional care, in that, the life script has been 'overwritten'. "Therefore, if anyone is in Christ, he is a new creature; old things have passed away; behold all things have become new." 2 Cor.5:17

The torture of meaning is developed because of hope; the agony of doubt is created because of faith; the anguish of fear exists because of love. Hidden within life are idiosyncracies, peculiarities, disorders, and temperments. Revelation, disclosure, confession and redemption are products as a result of faith, hope and love and are determinant, singular elements of wholistic life. They stand apart and united in the face of stark reality, and that reality is the scope of human digression from the original intent of God. These three must wage the assault upon the fortresses of the mind and soul, reclaiming, recapturing, restoring, redeeming that which is held captive by fear.
God is love;

Psalm 27:1, "The Lord is my light and my salvation; Whom shall I fear? The Lord is the strength of my life; Of whom shall I be afraid?

No comments: