We respond to each other... What more can you ask?

Mark 8:11-21

   A soul mate is a woman married to a man; nothing more because faith in God’s sanction is enough, nothing less because God created marriage for companionship, and nothing other because united purpose in living is the source of life and its witness. Being in the world but not of the world is to use the world and its ‘vices’ in accord, with shared intent, to thrive in appreciating the blessings of togetherness. Each and every day is a walk of faith. Paul said, “I die daily” and “sufficient for the day is the evil thereof” meaning a day is a lifetime and a lifetime is a day. Part of what he means is there are many choices available to us in a day. As we accept or deny any involvement, we are also casting aside what could have been for what is.

   A day has its youth in the morning, its midlife in midday and its aged wisdom in the evening. Losing a day is not an extension of having lost the day before, nor does it minimize having lost the day before that. Each day is a day unto itself. A day taken from another is not less in value than the day taken before where days end up fading away into meaningless forgotten witlessness. Instead, the sinfulness of days taken in spiteful indignation from another (ongoing revenge) accumulates an ever increasingly heavier ‘sentence’ before God by Christ Himself. We can thank God in heaven that He has a ‘not then but now’ reliable plan for that.

   Moderation means “mode of rating” or “sorting out the balances”. There is a vast difference between understanding someone and identifying with (recognizing) someone. Understanding (comprehending another’s meaning whether or not we accept or deny their intentions) has nothing to do with identifying with who they are to us and others. What we like is not who we are. What we do is not who we are. Who we are being, in being not who we are, is not what we are.  Identifying a person as a subject because of events and circumstances, instead of identifying with them as a person of purpose before us unto God, causes our understanding about living to identify a person with the subject matters at hand. Identifying with a “what” attempts to make the object a person and the person an object.

   Subjects are centered in the “what” of matters while the identity of people is centered in the “why” of matters. When a person is considered as a subject, there are efforts to alter the person by altering the subject. We often, habitually, identify with our own ideas of people without understanding their identity of who we and they are. Husbands and wives, parents and children, siblings, friends and neighbors can identify with each other through presumed perceptions about desires based in what we see, hear, and believe - without any understanding about who we and they are in our causes. Wanting to be the subject of desire by our identifying with what we have off-centers our self awareness into identifying with the “what” of our physical being, and our physical surroundings, that include other people. It is trying to be somebody we think we want to be, when we already are somebody who is not realizing (recognizing) who we are.

   When a man or woman is mesmerized by the lust of the eyes and the pride of the flesh, his or her search for adulation obligates a hoping to be a star of life to a companion. By identifying with a star prospect to lift one’s self into a sense of realism in purpose there is a replacing of our created ‘why’ of being for the ‘what’ of security. Requiring the focus of attentions to fit our projected expectation from another, we lose who we are to our perpetual striving to travel our personal journey in analyzing and manipulating the ever-changing output and input required to process our progression to reach our goals. In trying to make life, we become increasingly distant from life as made in Christ by God.

   The more integrated our involvement with various dreams we hope to realize through our clinging to what suits us from others, and the more we cling to the anger we experience in our efforts to condemn and overturn in spite, retaliation, and vengeance against others who we think have crashed our dream, the more we are incensed to determine the positive outcome of our journey dream. The more the effort to overcome pitfalls in the way of our journey’s way, the more consideration there is to ever greater perspectives and angles to compensate, the more the journey seems to be realistic in its compulsions to continue on because we are obsessed to continue.

   Compatibility does not mean to be a reflection of another, nor does it mean another should be a reflection of you. Unwavering determination, no matter what, for the sake of the one we love is a selfless and Christ-like duty to God in faith, with gratitude for His blessing opportunity to honor His Name through the gifts of responsibility He bestows upon us. Dedication for God’s sake for our mate is why we should rightly expect cooperation from one’s we depend upon to work with us in spirit and in truth. But, when we need cooperation to make our journey of life a journey of success, the journey of others is necessarily bound to us as we are bound to them – because all humans are created to be caring socially secure faithful beings.

   Any other’s journey of life (keeping in mind that the 'journey' concept is cultural myth) is different than our own because each person’s pathway is founded in dreams, misunderstanding, and misdirected self-realization. We assume that because we are aware and living the miracle of existence, the fact of life passing gives to us the vigor to hold onto that passing life. But, our passing life is passing us by through our efforts to gain what we are losing by selfishly dishonoring other’s right to their places with us by attempts at self protection when God designed us to protect each other through self-sacrificing companionship. In self-realization, we must absorb parts of those whom we associate with, and they must absorb parts of us, in finding a mutual compromise in a shared, but separate, dream.

   Since following one’s dream comes from our incomplete nature away from God’s expectations for us in Christ, through our desires to have and to be, we err in believing our faith is for the purposes of self-preservation, protection, and individual determination. Conflict over inconsistencies of self-awareness, that must increase with practiced protection of personal identity, in tandem with the false unity of collaboration necessary for reciprocal support of individualistic purpose, causes a simultaneous separate and shared striving against oppositional circumstances. The process of interaction between one’s self and others, in defense of our dream journey’s purposes, and in offense to outside and internal knowing, tells us that our and other’s journey’s purposes are invalid.

   Dreaming to fulfill our belief in who we wish to be blinds us to realizing the tensions and stresses over the difficulties of the journey. Our imagination, as different from what we know as real, is actually telling us there need not be a journey at all. Yearning to be loved to uphold our journey, we work to see results to spur us into seeking more results. Worldly knowing, as believed to be a journey of life, thinks of love as our acceptance of good things for onward progress. It also thinks of hate as our rejection of evil things that hinder our onward progress. In this, we accept in a loving way people who bring to us good things we believe makes our journey worthwhile, and we reject in a hateful way people who bring to us evil things we believe makes our journey fruitless and discouraging.

   However, true love neither accepts that life is a self-improvement journey nor does it reject that life is given in its fullness for us to accept as ours to honor by respecting shared loyalties of commitment in the power of Christ’s victory over circumstantial pitfalls we, and those who love us, endure. Rather than seeing the course of life as a journey, it is beneficial to see the course of life as an ongoing discovery of who we already are. Who we have believed we were is not who we are. Who we are at this moment is both who we are and who we are not because the person we are allowing to fade away through repentance is dead on the Cross, and the person we are allowing to manifest through our living in faith is finished in Christ’s eternal glory.

Stage One

   “When God is with us, who can be against us” applies to marriage where all projects, small or large, are better left to our professional (professing faith) place unto each other, unto God; where His promise is to actively guide our works. We do not personally have the talents to properly perform the task without Him. Husbands and wives are adept at letting each other know of their limitations so they may know when to ask for help. It is a joy to be in helpful service to God for one’s mate. God wants us not to think for a moment that we will touch a project without involving who He knows we are together in Christ. He would rather us take the situations and events of a day, as we are transparently honest together in the moment, to His qualified leading according to the positions our married partner has to us in priority to the rest of the world.

   We err believing we can make all our own situations (as people are not islands without constant influence, in some way or another, from everyone) from carefully working and shaping situations and events to assemble them into some sort of order, before bringing them together for God’s approval. God, however, as we trust our faith actions in Him by trusting our faith actions for each other for His sake, arranges and completes all the parts and complicated configurations of life together for not only our good, but for His ultimate good. There is no fun in sharing efforts in living the circumstances of a day and having our expectations fail, resulting in being stranded, or worse yet, causing loss of control and a collapse of trust. We save time, money, aggravation, and hardship to make and fit the parts of sharing living honestly in our doing, and sleep soundly nights knowing God will never fail.

   Many people are scattered in their attentions because they do not have a proper and stable focus. “Who I am” as searching for another to cohabit one’s life finds a “who I didn’t know I was” in the mate of choice. We know that what we like and what we have is not who we truly are, but we contradict this by identifying with the experiences and items that attract us. While accepting this contradiction to who we actually are in order to appease the group, “Who I am is what I like” is used as a molding of circumstances to set unfettered goals to achieve vs. our responding to what is needed at hand, to defend and protect our loved ones, despite the circumstances. “Who I am not is what I don’t like” completes the cycle of false religious making of our whims and desires. So, we look for and reach out to others who we hope will fill our void.

   Further attempts at building fond memories from light and warm moments give to us desires to standardize methods of compensation for our pitfalls and hardships. There is nothing a man or woman does not have the capacity, in the trust of faith in Christ, to appropriately overcome in forgiveness, for the sake of their mate. There will be some hurt and pain in the dying of who we were before, (our death in Christ on the cross) to accept who we are becoming (our life in Christ’s resurrection). When we try to please everybody without regard to the priorities of our oneness with our spouse, we end up pleasing nobody as we have forgotten to honor our particular positions of promise in life – choosing only one leaves the others for others to choose. If we are used to dealing with an ongoing wreck, we tend to look for and/or cause wrecks to deal with.

   There is a false sense of righteousness many of us believe in. It is centered in an establishment of the securities of protecting our emotional comfort zones. The time we use in fighting what we know is wrong around us takes time away from doing the right we know we should. To realize a moment by moment thankfulness as the clarity of what is right brings us closer to better choices, no matter how we may feel, is some of what salvation is about. Because of our pride to establish self sufficiency, learning through practice to understand grace, dignity, and right is very joyfully painful. Sort of a sad gladness where we see ourselves so far from God in ourselves and so close to Him in Him - where there is grief in our dying past and gladness in our becoming Life in Truth. We can be sure His better plans never lead a woman to contradict a man in the loyalties of the marriage bond. This is how God requires the responsibilities of honor to rest His securities for the woman in the man.

   We have hopes and dreams we project into our attractions for a prospective mate to fill the void of quirks between inquisitive wonder and calculated self-protective analysis. Desire for integration and sharing has an initial intense expectation of unknown positive possibilities. But, the differences found in the now interaction with a mate-to-be fashions decisions about who one is, who the other is, and who one and the other are together. Value attribution is the inclination to imbue our flesh nature with perceptions about ourselves, or others, or things, or situations, with qualities based in initial perceived values and/or expectations. Sensations are the goal when orientating our efforts to arrange things by their purposes, so there comes an experiential alignment we hope to be instinctually satisfied with in the outcome.

   Each and every one of us has some things that we do very well and some that we would rather not talk about. The reasons we rather would not talk about our shortcomings are internal and external pressures to improve. Desires for soothing our aggravations leads to creating aggravations that demand to be soothed. Confusion about our desires rests in trying to find a trust in others to validate our whims when others are doing the same. Responding to the natural environment, without respect to duty, causes a reactionary cause and effect unawareness outside trust through faith. Jumping to conclusions, habitual methods to eliminate risks, is caused by resentfully reacting as a substitute for sincerely responding. To fellowship ourselves into feeling good without dealing with the situations we are avoiding has the effect of increasing the weight of tension and depths of dismay.

   When God gives to us a gift, we are responsible for the proper use of that gift. The most valuable gift He gives to us all is our desires for trusting companionship. Trusting companionship in marriage is God’s most revered institution and is based in trust through faith in His Word. God designed every man to be compatible with any woman and every woman to be compatible with any man in lifelong marriage, preferably of the same generation, five or less years either way from one’s year of birth. This is a foundation of naturally created compatibility inherent in all humankind that has no quarrel against wholesome upright living. Universal compatibility of choice of a marriage partner does not, however, negate God’s will for each of us to be wed to a particular person.

   People generally get married because they want to be together. Usually, when a man or woman meets a woman or man, they will partially react in response to subtleties of expression similar to people who are familiar to them whether involvement with family members and/or friends and acquaintances is, or was, favorable or detrimental. People look for their parents or childhood caretakers (including influential public figures - people of renown and celebrity) in the ones who amorously attract them – both in the patterns of enjoyment and annoyance. God’s transforming power of mercy and grace in Christ does not recognize aristocratic superiority or inferior peasantry of classes regarding people and their perceived quality, or lack of quality, in existing social alignments and attitudes.

Stage Two

   Who we are is fathers, mothers, sons, daughters, husbands, and wives. Since salvation is a moment by moment walk of faith, the bonding of the moments of sharing a life in marriage necessarily is subject to unity of the faith of responsibility, within one’s particular position of duty, as outlined in the vow promises of the marriage ceremony. Nobody needs to prove their worth since our worthiness is in Christ. Thus, marriage between a man and a woman is the holy created avenue to properly contain the internal beast. Any man and any woman can find matrimonial bliss together when honoring God’s commandments, ordinances, and expectations for marriage in faith unto Him in Jesus Christ.

   When circumstances take priority over who our husband or wife is in Christ, proper protective jealousy over our own cares and concerns about our loved ones is turned into the self-righteous spite of indignation. It drives us into doing the wrongs we profess to stand against. Mutual independence, used to imitate unity in marriage, is a warped imbalance between independence in purpose with co-dependent results and co-dependence in purpose with independent results when there are too many conflicting loyalties. Not only do we never make headway to overcome our life’s projects, we lose who we could have been by not working on our solutions.

   A disagreement or conflict is not about what cannot be done. A disagreement is an opportunity to discover what can be done. A conflict ensues between us and others who are doing to us as we are doing to them – it is a reversal of the golden rule; “Treat others how you want to be treated”, where we treat others according to how they treat us. Conscientiously, we can make demands from situations and circumstances hoping there will be cooperation from the will to comply. But, we are ever subject to each and every person’s will of freedom to answer Christ’s call of trust in Him through us. When we believe our pleasant surprises of emotional excitement and condescending placation are uplifting to others, we have lost the sense of gift giving that responds to God’s call of generosity in order to sway intentions to serve our own desires.

   We are looking for achievement in positive controls we and our interests can solidify. Peace is less volatile than fear (disconcert – loss of protection) so emotional success is accomplished through physical success to validate directions to remanufacture sensations of experience by again manipulating surrounding items of interest into areas of personally controlled order where belief in financial stability is the standard replacement for the faithful responsibility of genuine co-dependence. Then we talk about people in their absence rather than speaking to them in person. Our endeavors can seem right to us when God has a longer range, and better, pattern of plans. It is better to work together with what we do have than working against each other about what we do not have.

   As sharing over time and experience conveys common knowledge, there comes a settling in to valuations and re-evaluations that orient emotions and thoughts to previous from engagement patterns. Spending time rejecting what we do not like to establish a defense of what we do like leads to ignoring people who represent who we believe we are not because they do not like what we like – and we end up accepting another because they like what we wish to have - knowing they are not what we believe they like. This leads to a rejecting of one’s self because we realize what we like is not who we are. It brings emotionally despairing and conflicting confusions that drive us into activities centered in loss aversion – going to great lengths unto categorized mountains of losses to avoid dealing with the specific losses of integrity and well being.

   Interfering others of ‘caring persuasion’, who are not members of a marriage, do not have the responsibility of authority to decide for a man and woman they no longer should be together. Sometimes disappointments lead to distancing conclusions such as: “They got married for the wrong reasons.” and “It’s not working out.” in order to force barriers to emotional upheaval by “getting out of the situation”. In that way they are delving into private personal business they cannot objectively evaluate, and are unwittingly making a failure of themselves, as well as the man and woman of the marriage, by inciting offensive attacks to disband the union with the onerous judgment, “…wasn’t meant to be.”

   Holding a marriage captive to social preconditions of separation for purposes of facilitation… to perhaps favorable attitude and behavioral adjustments “conditions of togetherness”, undercuts God’s hands-on, in the now, faithful witness of reliance in the Word of Christ through the Holy Spirit. Doubt will bring restrictions through analysis and disrespect of faith action to trust in a word for expectations of what should be. It becomes, in neglecting our place of obedience unto God through others, a standard of imaginative ambition instead of a real focus on what is and what we may better do with what we have. If used for His glory and purposes, the creative actions of the gift of togetherness makes for a wonderful array of life supporting reality.

Stage Three

   Human beings have an instinctual physical nature similar to the animal kingdom. The difference among people rather than animals is people have an indwelling soul-spirit being from and of God justified by faith in Christ. Instinctual attentions with regard to human activities without godly leading is different from animals and tends to support belief that memories make up who a person is. What that does is ‘promote’ the assumption that God is not Who He is.

   When the nature of “survival of the fittest” rules our ego driven emotional impulses, the spiritual soul aspect of our being loses its place of authority. We also have a spiritual soul nature God designed to be in rule over the animalistic instincts of the flesh that members of the non-human animal realm do not have. When our spiritual soul nature of authority in Christ rules over our creature instincts, we find the sharing of our physical nature brings to us degrees of justified joy we are unable to find otherwise.

   A conflicting stress of pressure/strain complex in the working out of “me” and “you”, when a man and woman are bonding in personal attractive interest, has the pleasurable excitement of differences to offset the sameness of personal self-knowledge. Difficulties tend to push one into previous self definitions of defensive independence while efforts to solve problems may work to make the other fit preconceived notions that seemed to work. Understanding this, we can forge ahead in our appreciation and joys in sharing our shared attraction in more constructive and fulfilling ways.

   A matter of upset cannot be graciously overcome with the mercy of understanding unless it has first been revealed. When we feel our prayers are not answered or are ignored - rest assured God knows and considers. A lot of times, we must take the load for the poor decisions of others - but that's our job too, in Christ. The times when we think or wonder why our heavenly Father does not protect our interests, it is because He respects everyone's will to do as they wish in this life. What is thought of as incompatibility in interpersonal intimate relationship can only be found outside God’s grace and mercy of salvation. We compensate for our disorder and further increase it in efforts to escape it, by intensifying the emotionally experiential flare of excitement.

   Acceptance of the favorable attributes of another is somewhat less emotionally exciting than the intrigue present in the challenge to make right by accepting in a companion what seemed impossible to previously work out. We require others to be corrected from the wrongs we believe they are inflicting upon us, while we justify our own wrong by their negative example, and lose our time of the day for them and ourselves. Innocence is not something of our wholeness we lose through education and experience, and innocence is not what we have not said or done as if we are automatically righteous of ourselves. Innocence is obtained as a gift, through faith in Christ, from God.

   Our blinders are worn to filter out all evidence that contradicts our diagnosis of a situation and we hold others and ourselves in a form of stigmatic permanence in an attempt to validate our suppositions. Feeling frustrated, we disregard protocol and safety to hopefully relieve stress pressures from conflicting obligations and turn to groups of collective opinion to support our own. A diagnosis bias to uphold our balance of habits provides a blindness to all evidence that contradicts our initial assessment of a person(s) or situation, and a judgmental bias gives to the moment of recognition of probability a label we can put on a person(s) or situation. Pleased acceptance of pleasures that offset our troubles gives to us a false sense of stability, while aggravated threat to positive expectation intensifies the dread and fear we use to pursue relief.

   Group dynamics steeped in emotional camaraderie play the roles in decision making our personal role playing can emulate and brings the fears of the pain of loss that drives our materialistic emotional hunger to succeed. Listening to anyone who has an opinion that seems practical (worldly wisdom), against the "odds" of the progress of honorable trust, takes the power of moving forward faithfully in anticipation and gives it over to the burden of manipulative management. At the same time, the unique differences that make a romantic interest appealing in comparison to others, has the effect to create an illusory caricature of who they are to us and who we are to them. This actually intensifies, instead of reduces, our emotionally driven inclination to blind ourselves to an enhanced exchange of realism while building a romantic entanglement of self-edifying compensation for fear.

   The satisfied joy of gain is much less emotionally stimulating than dissatisfied disappointment of loss, so we learn to want what we want without considering why we may want what we do to avoid why we are wanting to overreact to our perceived losses. What we do depends on who we believe we are - it does not make us who we are. Satanic persuasions thought of as self defense, the twisting of the Word, brings spite through elated pride. We remain lost in our belief that we have found God because we have become our own god by interpreting the joy of His mercy and restoration as some sort of self-fulfillment at His expense. Because we have learned to forget how to approach solving our issues of life, we use our God given authority over the situation with our loved ones to restrict, divide, and transfer the load of consignment, conveniently, to people other than our spouse who have no place of duty in our affairs.

   Goals for happy and fulfilled relationship, that do not put God first at His request by putting our mate first, divert our motives into telling our romantic interest what he or she wants to hear because we want them to be happy with perception instead of reality. Personal validity based in demands for an inherent right to happiness, aside from trust in God’s wisdom, takes the humanity from our loved ones. When there are troubles (and there will be), it is essential to look for remedies to frustrations and hardship without casting aside the bonds of pledge. Any other concerns that become grievances and/or disagreements do not have a priority over the original reasons marriage exists.

Ephesians chapter 3

"Well... I have faith in people, I just don't trust the Devil."   ~  Ronald Reagan

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