Contributed by Andrew Love
We all have a place where we go when times are tough. Usually, it is not a physical space but sometimes it is. As children, many people had an object which gave them a sense of protection such as a ‘blanky’ (security blanket) or a stuffed animal or some variety.
Did you have such an object?
For me, it was a little less common. Instead of having a ‘thing’ to give me comfort, I had a way of weaving pillowcases through my fingers from a very early age. I suppose it felt like I was holding hands with the pillowcase and for some reason that provided a great deal of calm to my little soul.
As we grow older, it usually takes a little more of a complex approach to comfort us in times of need. As our lives become interwoven with responsibilities, relationships, careers, etc, we are occasionally pushed into very uncomfortable experiences. If we don’t learn how to deal with the stress that comes with our ever-changing environments, we may find ourselves adopting false senses of comfort – much like a ‘blanky’ but for adults.
Consider drugs. Think about what function they are serving. Nobody would willingly ingest any type of substance that would destroy their physical, spiritual, and mental health unless it was serving a much-desired need. It is easy to simply view drugs from an external addictive perspective, but what exactly is it that people are addicted to? They are hooked on the feeling they get from taking the drugs. Or you could view it from a different angle – that people love the negative feelings they are avoiding by taking those drugs as well.
We use Netflix for the same purposes. Grasping at feeling something through external means whilst avoiding the negative feelings that are plaguing us.
What about your phone? Ever use your phone when entering a new and unfamiliar setting to help you feel more at ease? Next time you are in an elevator, watch how quickly everyone takes out their phones. It’s their blanky. The scary strange people around them quickly disappear the second they plug into the vast universe of their phone. Problem solved.
The real problem with this approach is that you are missing a Golden opportunity to connect with the divine. Loving parents desperately long to help their children when they are grappling with tough circumstances. Our propensity to unceasingly love our children is not a human invention, it came from our eternal parent, God. When we go anywhere else to fulfill our deepest needs other than our divine heavenly parent we are giving our power and authority to it.
To ask someone or something to help take away your pain and give you healing is a form of submission and is definitely a form of worship. When we avoid our significant other and head to our phones to watch porn to escape the pain, we are in many ways worshipping porn. We are giving away our personal authorship of our lives and all the intricate emotions that accompany us on our journey and instead opt to chase after a feeling, a neurochemical high.
The more you rely on porn to help you cope with difficulty, the more you are handicapping your own ability to work through situations that arise. The less you visit God in times of desperation, the less you are able to relate to the divine in any meaningful way at all. It is a vicious cycle. The less we go to God, the less we feel we can rely on our relationship with our Heavenly Parent, which causes us to doubt of faith and want to just throw in the towel altogether.
Faith is a muscle. It can atrophy, I have seen it happen over and over. This includes faith in yourself. If you can’t get through a day without self-sabotage then it becomes very easy to feel utterly powerless. It is in this very moment that God is eagerly awaiting your attention. Just like when you see a child checking for Easter eggs in all the wrong places, but can see them getting closer and closer!
Parents just want to see their children reach their potential.
If this is you, if this story somehow resonates with your situation, please make it a point to seek out God. There is so much love awaiting you the moment you let go of your shame, judgment, self-hatred, and all the other rubbish you’ve been clinging onto for so long. It starts and ends with God.