Why do we complicate this life that God has given us?
It was a marvelous world when I was very young. I had a very peaceful place that I would visit quite often called “grandma and grandpa’s house,” and they had a very big yard that I would explore. There were many different types of trees, beautiful rose bushes, a garden full of different types of fruits and vegetables and a chicken house. There was so much splendor within that little plot of land. I recall spending a lot of time out there, just observing life. The birds would sing. The breeze would blow through the greenery and the sun would warm my face. I’d sit on the ground and watch the ants diligently work. The squirrels would spend their time robbing nuts from the pecan trees. When I look back at the way things were when I was a child, everything seemed to be perfect, and innocent. The world was just beautiful. Harmless.
At times throughout my life, I would visit many different places around my city that were full of the same types of scenery. If I was having a difficult time, I would go to these peaceful places. I’d sit and think about the appearance of the physical world, and how it differed from the way of the past. The trees were not as green. The blue of the sky was dulled. I didn’t have the same appreciation that I once had. I was no longer seeing through the innocent eyes of a child. I was a young man who viewed the world through a haze of blinding emotions. Sadness. Very little happiness within. Depression. Anxiety. Thoughts of things that only corrupted my view of the beauty that was right in front of me. I never related any of these things that were blurring my view to the things that I was allowing in. It never once occurred to me that it was because of my lack of self-awareness that the world was not the same as it once was.
Before I started to really understand God, I had no guidance. What I mean by “guidance” is there was no foundation, and no structure within my life. No one to run to when I needed help. When I was a child, I didn’t really need it. My parents were the foundation. My caretakers were the ones who provided structure. I was just a developing baby. The physical world was a new and wonderous place that had no dangers. There were not many negative forces that were polluting my mind. The only thing that I really had, was joy. Happiness. The adults would pamper me, give me a nice environment, and they provided a beautiful yard for me to enjoy. The simplicity, the innocence, the wonder and newness was all that I knew. The purity of a new body and mind.
Something dissipated along the way. That purity. That innocence. It was contaminated by the world, and the many things that were brought about. Those things were absorbed. I witnessed a great deal of traumatic events, and picked up a lot of destructive behaviors from many different environments. As I matured, I processed the world through a very unhealthy mind. The development of my youth was full of painful experiences, and the fear that accompanied my development took its toll on my internal structure. My mind was plagued by a deep torment. My foundation was weak.
I’ve recently learned why that sparkle that I’d once so deeply enjoyed as a child was stripped away. Why the haze appeared. It was because of what I was allowing in. It was because of my focus on the things of the world without first filtering it through His wisdom. This is so true for me. When I was going through all of these times of despair, I knew that there was something else that was pulling me into a pit of disorder. An underlying problem that was causing the problems along my surface. I had a great epiphany somewhere along the way, and I began to realize that there was a great force, a very evil force pulling me away from peace. I began to think about the stories of the devil that I had learned about as a boy. I also had realized that my underlying problem, was FEAR. Fear was the root of my misery. Fear had caused me to start these patterns that were destroying me from the inside out. It was fear, stemming from the UNCERTAINTY as I was growing up within a dysfunctional home. Uncertainty. Was I safe? Was I loved? Was I going to make it? Was there any other way besides being depressed? I would go through these questions time and time again within my mind. These consuming thoughts took away the blue skies, the greens of the foliage, the splendor of the beautiful world.
I have a deep faith in God. I believe that our loving Creator has provided all of these marvelous works in nature for us to enjoy. I also believe that sin is definitely at play within our world. In my time of darkness, I saw many things and people who were not anything like the incomprehensible and majestic beauty of the yard in which I used to play. These things and people were void of light. Empty. Sometimes the demons would show themselves in different ways throughout my journey. The torment within me also allowed those same demons to have their way with me. I know from experience that there is definitely a dark world that is here, and its ways are manipulating all of us.
So I asked the question at the beginning. Why do we complicate this life that God has given us? Why do we not see the beautiful morning sun, and the birds that sing to us? Why do we miss the peace and joy, and get caught up in our troubles? I believe it is because we don’t spend enough time with that creator of life. The Creator of all things that are so splendidly crafted. The maker of the sun and skies. The animals and plants. I believe that if we truly understand the Lord through His Word and through His Holy Spirit within us, we can easily see the world as we did as children. Pure. Divinely crafted. I have found that a relationship with Jesus Christ, and what He has provided, has removed the haze that distorted my view of His splendid world. The more time I spend with Him, the more I enjoy His beauty in all of its richness, and the less I focus on the evil forces at play.