Independence from monarch and Mob

A fair number of people today are aware a large fraction of the American colonists decided they no longer tolerated being under the reign of the British royal family and Parliament. What fewer may also keep in mind is that the founders of American independence equally desired to avoid the normality of mob rule. To be self-governing, free from the excesses of monarchy and democracy, Americans needed to be a virtuous people for the well-being of the republic.

Yes, political independence begins with families & communities, whom can prepare the younger generations to inherit a civilization that unceasingly dialogues truth and justice. Such is a well rooted drive to form interconnecting associations that discuss and debate the essentials as well as particulars of socio-economic realms, from the neighborhood to the nation. The Enlightenment elements agreed that God imparts rights to those in His image. The Christian heritage was the blueprint for universal principle. Greco-Roman tradition bestowed a set of mental tools to ponder the nature of things.

The inversion, turning upside down/inside out, of this pursuit of Logos (divine order; Christ Jesus) is defied by mortal hubris, a satanic pride that seeks unwarranted glory or at least temporal gratification, which possesses a vampire’s insatiable hunger. It is pseudo-liberty that forsakes personal, familial, and/or communal responsibility. It is the social-Darwinian hustle for material wealth. It is the lustful objectification of persons and their image, reflecting their Creator, for the sake of personal pleasure. It is the creature arrogantly exercising power as if they are Lord.

This is a historically consistent reality, mobs directly or indirectly invite the rule of tyrants. A monarch faces a fair amount of social/moral restraint. Dictators and Oligarchs redefine as they will. A mob reacts passionately to situations; they do not act in strategic unity. Hence, while attacking those who may be in the wrong, much destruction is committed against others, crimes of passion and opportunism. Acute or chronic social chaos can be the probable chance for shrewd souls to assert vice grip means of control.

Members of a republic ought to act in accordance with law and principle, because they are of families and communities. These close ties allow them to voice their thoughts, take economic and political counter measures; and engage in defensive force. It is much more difficult to deceive a likeminded people who reason in the things of God, practicing a division of power for the liberty of their fellow members. Democracy more readily fosters mobs, since public decision making rests on mass persuasion of what is popular, not necessarily what is right. All a charismatic promiser of grand schemes need do is at least convince a minority to react, for they depend on granting power to strangers rather than sharing it in their more immediate circles.

The modern shift to an educated, instead of a virtuous people will be any nation’s downfall. Educate them in what? Oh, yes, how to be a productive employee for the technocrat economy and to empower the government bureaucracy in being the. Indeed, it is desired by wicked beings we abandon intimacy with the Logos, our families, and neighbors, so we are not active citizens of a republic independent from mortal monarchs (presidents?) and pretenders of God. For a global order, run by demonic disciples, subjects that react with wants, although passive in comfort, make ideal chattel.

Therefore if there is any consolation in Christ, if any comfort of love, if any fellowship of the Spirit, if any affection and mercy, fulfill my joy by being like-minded, having the same love, being of one accord, of one mind. Let nothing be done through selfish ambition or conceit, but in lowliness of mind let each esteem others better than himself. Let each of you look out not only for his own interests, but also for the interests of others.Let this mind be in you which was also in Christ Jesus, who, being in the form of God, did not consider it robbery to be equal with God, but made Himself of no reputation, taking the form of a bondservant, and coming in the likeness of men. And being found in appearance as a man, He humbled Himself and became obedient to the point of death, even the death of the cross. Therefore God also has highly exalted Him and given Him the name which is above every name, 10 that at the name of Jesus every knee should bow, of those in heaven, and of those on earth, and of those under the earth, 11 and that every tongue should confess that Jesus Christ is Lord, to the glory of God the Father.

Philippians 2:1-11

 

 

Fathers’ Day: The Patriarchs

Men that couple with a woman, raising their children amid a community, propel us forward not for the sake of progress or order. Instead, it is for what is true, good, and beautiful, a life to pass on to the next generation. They are the facilitators as well as guards, so their families and neighbors may thrive in the blessings of God.

Yes, not all men have embraced the responsibilities expected of them from the Heavenly throne. Too many lack the strength or wisdom to dare engage our fallen world, rather they remain immature in a pseudo-childhood. Thus we have so many men and women forsaking the image of Adam/Eve in favor of mimicking the beasts of the field. Fathers, the Patriarchs, set a standard, a legacy for their household. They are taught to tend to the bountiful garden, denying the hollow pleasure of a forbidden tree.

When our first father, Adam, failed to adhere to our Creator’s commands for a fulfilled life, God the Father Himself made the redeeming sacrifice through Christ His Son, so we may become repentant children of the Almighty. Earthly fathers are likewise given the authority to make such sacrifice for their kin. They serve not themselves but the will of their Creator, Whom exercises power with love alongside justice.

Fathers/Patriarchs wrestle with the world, their flesh, and the devil. They may succumb to the deceit, yet their strength and wisdom can be renewed through the mercy of God. Wicked and/or the cowardly men are unable to ensnare the beloved of their household, when they are instructed to fear only the Lord, to pursue knowledge, most so in what is holy. Free peoples are raised by God-fearing patriarchs, men of heavenly things.

My father’s name means long spear. He has instructed me in the art of offense/defense via body, mind, and spirit. In the long run, his direction has lead me to the foot of the Throne, where our Father may bestow upon my soul strength and wisdom. Indeed, such is the command to patriarchs, the raising of a holier generation.

A blessed Fathers’ Day to all. Honor the patriarchs, the men of heavenly things, in your life. Forgive the man who was not a father. Set yourself before the All Father of Heaven, for He is the source of what is true, good, and beautiful in the days of our lives.

“And when you pray, you shall not be like thehypocrites. For they love to pray standing in the synagogues and on the corners of the streets, that they may be seen by men. Assuredly, I say to you, they have their reward. But you, when you pray, go into your room, and when you have shut your door, pray to your Father who is in the secret place; and your Father who sees in secret will reward you openly. And when you pray, do not use vain repetitions as the heathen do. For they think that they will be heard for their many words.

“Therefore do not be like them. For your Father knows the things you have need of before you ask Him. In this manner, therefore, pray:

Our Father in heaven,
Hallowed be Your name.
10 Your kingdom come.
Your will be done
On earth as it is in heaven.
11 Give us this day our daily bread.
12 And forgive us our debts,
As we forgive our debtors.
13 And do not lead us into temptation,
But deliver us from the evil one.
For Yours is the kingdom and the power and the glory forever. Amen.

14 “For if you forgive men their trespasses, your heavenly Father will also forgive you. 15 But if you do not forgive men their trespasses, neither will your Father forgive your trespasses.

Matthew 6:5-15

 

Christian Men & College

There have been a number of articles by Christian women explaining why females of the faith should avoid going to college, though may still obtain a post-secondary education/degree. Examples: https://thetransformedwife.com/godly-men-prefer-debt-free-virgins-without-tattoos/ & https://mrspriceisrighthomeschooling.blogspot.com/2010/05/should-young-women-go-to-college.html

I am going to voice my opinion on why Christian men should likewise be cautious if not opposed to attending college. As a disclaimer, I do not consider this Gospel. It is more so advice to consider like Paul’s preference for celibacy over marriage (1 Corinthians 7:6-7). After all, we are to be in the world but not of it. Often that means refusing to partake in certain matters, this case being how our intellect is formed.

Now, it is apparent to most that higher education is anti-Christ. Worldview, philosophy, and practices are in enmity with the things of God. As fruits of this rebellion, corruption infests the academics, organization, and finances of college institutions. What benefit do the majority of even non-Christian men have “learning” from these proud decadent halls? The primary reason advocated to acquire a degree is economics, not a way to a more intellectually/spiritually prosperous culture.

Get a degree, get a job. In other words, become more able to sell yourself in the market place. Tell me men of God, were you called by your Creator to be a source of goods and services for the wants of our fallen world? I find it vile to be viewed as a resource for the state or a company. We are meant for the glory of the Lord. Our minds are to be endowed with knowledge for His will, not the vain ambitions of men.

Truth in the lecture hall and seminar is a mere product of whatever fancy people have. Competing ideals jockey for influence more than actual instruction in substance. Virtues advocated are inversions of holiness. Social justice is praised, although it requires students to practice diverse types of shallow prejudice revolving around the like of ethnicity/race, sex/gender, age, politics, religion, etc. Good and evil are relative to popular consensus, hence the anarchy of pure democracy warned of by ancient thinkers. Repeated results of math and science are likewise discredited when they intervene with radical agendas regarding the triviality of human life, sodomy, transgenderism, fornication, divorce, environmentalism, profiteering, usury, centralized power, elimination of checks & balances, etc. What is a man to do in the presence of such reckless hate?

Well, according to the general left-right wing perspectives, just accept much as progress, while objecting to some through the power of the ballot and dollar. Or simply try to survive the changing tides, staying above the storm. There is some truth to each, except it falls far short of the courage God expects of us. College more often than not encourages us to be weak, divided by our fears and sinful passions. Yes, pressured to put down the Word, that sword that can behead giants of wickedness, pierce dragons of deception, cast holy light in the demonic darkness. What do I propose as an alternative?

Colleges are not based on truth, marring the perspective of reality of the student body. Public and private funding impair administrative judgement, along with affiliated organizations, hence contributing to the underlying prioritization of money. The majority of advocacy groups support things anti-Christ (Logos) in nature, playing a hand in facilitating a degenerate campus (& contemporary) culture. In and outside the classroom, abstract/esoteric theories tend to supersede facts whether it be literature or the more concrete material of biology. Ah, pride in tandem with love of mammon.

Essentially, this is what Christian men can do: 1. Be very selective attending a still devoutly Christian college, including Catholic and Orthodox. 2. Find an online program to obtain a degree or at least minimize campus attendance. 3. Discernment in choosing liberal arts major, tech program, and/or trade school/apprenticeship (not everyone should go to college). 4. Have an intimate community wherever you go via family, church, friends, neighbors, and co-workers. 5. Live a life in accordance with the two greatest commandments, loving God with all your strength and your neighbor as yourself.

Grow as a man of God, pursuing how He wants His sons to live according to Scripture, supplemented by sound tradition. Neither be steered by mortal ambition nor the anxious uncertainty of your future. Fear Christ, knowing the truth, for it will set you free from false promises and looming insecurities. Raise a home – beloved family, fruitful labor, and nurturing food. If you are going to submit to something, let it be the Cross, not pointless human desire. If you end up choosing to attend any institution, do so in the Holy Spirit, with wisdom and strength. Godspeed, my brethren.

What profit has the worker from that in which he labors? 10 I have seen the God-given task with which the sons of men are to be occupied. 11 He has made everything beautiful in its time. Also He has put eternity in their hearts, except that no one can find out the work that God does from beginning to end.

12 I know that nothing is better for them than to rejoice, and to do good in their lives, 13 and also that every man should eat and drink and enjoy the good of all his labor—it is the gift of God.

14 I know that whatever God does,
It shall be forever.
Nothing can be added to it,
And nothing taken from it.
God does it, that men should fear before Him.
15 That which is has already been,
And what is to be has already been;
And God requires an account of what is past.

Ecclesiastes 3:9-15

Then Jesus was led up by the Spirit into the wilderness to be tempted by the devil. And when He had fasted forty days and forty nights, afterward He was hungry. Now when the tempter came to Him, he said, “If You are the Son of God, command that these stones become bread.”

But He answered and said, “It is written, ‘Man shall not live by bread alone, but by every word that proceeds from the mouth of God.’

Then the devil took Him up into the holy city, set Him on the pinnacle of the temple, and said to Him, “If You are the Son of God, throw Yourself down. For it is written:

‘He shall give His angels charge over you,’

and,

‘In their hands they shall bear you up,
Lest you dash your foot against a stone.’

Jesus said to him, “It is written again, ‘You shall not tempt the Lord your God.’

Again, the devil took Him up on an exceedingly high mountain, and showed Him all the kingdoms of the world and their glory. And he said to Him, “All these things I will give You if You will fall down and worship me.”

10 Then Jesus said to him, “Away with you, Satan! For it is written, ‘You shall worship the Lord your God, and Him only you shall serve.’

11 Then the devil left Him, and behold, angels came and ministered to Him.

Matthew 4:1-11

 

 

Memorial: Eulalio “Lalo” Calderon

On Wednesday May 15th 2019 at 4:45 am, my grandfather passed into eternity. His legacy reminds those of us still in this life that our short time impacts so many for generations to come. Will us successors choose to inherit this noble heritage – timeless fortitude amid the chaos of our fallen world? Will we bear the responsibility of maintaining livelihoods one day at a time? Yes, a sober mindedness not easily swayed by neither social trend nor cultural norm.

Grandpa was a man whom daily tended his garden. Family and community received the gifts of his hands. On top of serving action was integrity in word. This was decades of sustaining life, creating order in spite of not acquiring riches or glory. He was a father to orphans, as well as a provider to widows. Unlike so many of us, his prejudices came second to a compassionate respect for neighbors. Not a man of sophisticated faith, yet he was disciplined in right living.

A sharp reminder for my life is whether or not I have lived with integrity, a fortitude that stands before difficult situation and painful circumstance. Have I spoken truth, practicing what is good before the eyes of God, maintaining beauty in others’ lives? More importantly, have I done so with a spirit growing into a fortress grounded against the deception of sin, including the pleasure of evil? Do I choose the strength of almighty Christ or the fear of mortal man? Do I live what I believe in?

I know it is spoken for many when I say, thank you Lord, for our dear Lalo. As the priest said prior the lowering of the casket, God gifted him to us for such a time before the return to the dirt. For the rest of his descendants, we press on. We are still in the race. The fight is still ours to have. There is still a garden to be tended. Do we choose to do so with greater fortitude, or do we live only to influence the younger generations to be fragile in vain comfort? Lord, give me hands and heart strong enough to carry a cross.

34 “Beware that your hearts do not become drowsy from carousing and drunkenness and the anxieties of daily life, and that day catch you by surprise 35 like a trap. For that day will assault everyone who lives on the face of the earth. 36 Be vigilant at all times and pray that you have the strength to escape the tribulations that are imminent and to stand before the Son of Man.”

Luke 21:34-36

Public Education: Mandatory Mediocrity

How can I have even remote respect for something that as a result of rejecting the Creator/Christ, it lacks the substance to grow a person? Based on the grand assumption all just came into existence, young minds are instructed to know simply for the sake of knowing, that is whatever the government (public) wants them to value. Mix in democracy and opportunism, then you get a mutating alphabet soup of concepts that students are tested on without reason. Instead of gazing into the infinite mind of God, inspired to expand our mental abilities for His glory, most of us are taught to randomly learn for a vain and vague common good.

Fortunately, I was spared this institution very early on. It did not take my parents too long to decide that daycare itself was a poor option for their children’s well being. Now, I am well aware of the objections to homeschooling, as well as private school. The key counterpoint is why worry about the quality of these forms of education, more so the former, when the public system itself is a decrepit failure? Sure, not every child receives an edifying non-public upbringing. Whereas the public school system is a sub par factory. On top of it all, the government decides what values to interweave during the average seven hours at their institutions.

“Moreover, the society of which the child is to be a member is, in the United States, a democratic and progressive society. The child must be educated for leadership as well as for obedience. He must have power of self-direction and power of directing others, power of administration, ability to assume positions of responsibility. This necessity of educating for leadership is as great on the industrial as on the political side. . . . Apart from participation in social life, the school has no moral end nor aim. As long as we confine ourselves to the school as an isolated institution, we have no directing principles, because we have no object.”

from: chapter 2 of Moral Principles in Education by John Dewey (1909)

Public instruction is anti-God and average by nature. It is a supposedly neutral space that is intended as an education for all. How do you stay neutral teaching youth for at least thirteen years of their childhood? How do you employ a universal standard that meets the needs of every student? Why trust politicians and bureaucrats, let us not forget the random administrators and instructors, such utter strangers to have a critical impact in forming what children think and value? It is said we should not trust many perhaps most parents because they are ignorant themselves. Well, it is only fair to make sure everyone shares in the universal mediocre indoctrination.

The number of times I have encountered educators admitting the system is broken but is the best way for children is surreal. No faith in God, though there is plenty for the eventual fruition of the ideal education for all. Amid the fractured reading, writing, and arithmetic, wicked teachings on race, sex, and human life pervade. People and events of history/government are taught according to general racial profiles. Sexuality and gender are treated as casual pleasures. Humans are of primal animal origin and valued according to popular opinion. And who decides all this? State/Federal authorities, along with anyone directly involved politically and/or economically, dictate the information/ideas the youth of a nation are to master.

“In so far as the school represents, in its own spirit, a genuine community life; in so far as what are called school discipline, government, order, etc., are the expressions of this inherent social spirit; in so far as the methods used are those that appeal to the active and constructive powers, permitting the child to give out and thus to serve; in so far as the curriculum is so selected and organized as to provide the material for affording the child a consciousness of the world in which he has to play a part, and the demands he has to meet; so far as these ends are met, the school is organized on an ethical basis. So far as general principles are concerned, all the basic ethical requirements are met. The rest remains between the individual teacher and the individual child.”

from: chapter 4 of Moral Principles in Education

Advanced pupils are still vulnerable to this mortal system. It was a fair number of students that really helped me understand the deficiency. They explained their AP/honors courses, especially the former, are customized for the standardized tests. This means substantial content is absent. A number of them, along with post-secondary students, acknowledge or at least eventually discover their inability to immediately transition into higher levels after graduation. The standard is thereby not excellence.

Perhaps, I am too stupid to understand the grandeur in learning according to the hopes of political/corporate powers. Indeed, forsaking the whims of Christ’s cross to be a consumer of false promises and products is not that appealing. So many of us, including the founders of communities if not nations, did not need the hand of government schooling to pursue knowledge in what God has wrought. Language, history, math, science, the arts and world view are fruit of His obeyed in accordance with holy Scripture. Christ – the Logos – is the incarnation of Creation/Order whom walked among unholy ambitions of men. Fearing God is the beginning of timeless knowledge. To fear anything or anyone else is learning to be an intellectual slave of self, men, and the Devil.

Need for Fidelity.18 Therefore, take these words of mine into your heart and soul. Bind them on your arm as a sign, and let them be as a pendant on your forehead. 19 Teach them to your children, speaking of them when you are at home and when you are away, when you lie down and when you get up, 20 and write them on the doorposts of your houses and on your gates, 21 so that, as long as the heavens are above the earth, you and your children may live on in the land which the Lord swore to your ancestors he would give them.

Deuteronomy 11:18-21

Rejoice in the Lord always. I shall say it again: rejoice! Your kindness should be known to all. The Lord is near. Have no anxiety at all, but in everything, by prayer and petition, with thanksgiving, make your requests known to God. Then the peace of God that surpasses all understanding will guard your hearts and minds in Christ Jesus.Finally, brothers, whatever is true, whatever is honorable, whatever is just, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is gracious, if there is any excellence and if there is anything worthy of praise, think about these things. Keep on doing what you have learned and received and heard and seen in me. Then the God of peace will be with you.

Philippians 4:4-9

Giving Unto God & Caesar

Last week was the deadline for filing income taxes. Less than a week ago was the observation of Christ’s death and resurrection. We are expected to give unto Caesar, our human governments. By contrast, we are to surrender unto God, giving our all. Caesar is merely another man that is meant to provide a service to the citizenry. Whereas Christ is the foundation of our very lives. What happens when we allow the mortal Caesars to have control in the areas of the eternal Lord? Disappointment then tragedy comes.

People cause suffering, no more or less than the governing powers. For some reason many call these two, one in the same, to eventually fix the evils of the world. What is even more comical is now in our modern world we are surprised when Caesar is unable to prevent or immediately restore the aftermath of natural disasters. Why do we put so much hope in mortals simply because they have some kind of authority, either through position and/or wealth? If your hope to relieve the human condition lies in human beings, there was not much hope in the first place.

This is also tied into the evils rooted in the love of money. Politicians and rich men alike, what is the outward source of their meager power? Taxes and payments. Unless we give, they cannot act. They promise the goods/services of security and comfort. Sure, they are only human like the rest of us, though with all that money we give, only they can solve what ails us. In case you are wondering, yes, I mean halls of government and even business can share the power of Caesar, in times of peace or war.

But, though the patriarchal system is the earliest form of government, and all governments have been developed or modified from it, the right of government to govern cannot be deduced from the right of the father to govern his children, for the parental right itself is not ultimate or complete. . . . Property, ownership, dominion rests on creation. The maker has the right to the thing made. He, so far as he is sole creator, is sole proprietor, and may do what he will with it. God is sovereign lord and proprietor of the universe because He is its sole creator. He hath the absolute dominion, because He is absolute maker. . . . The despot is a man attempting to be God upon earth, and to exercise a usurped power. Despotism is based on, the parental right, and the parental right is assumed to be absolute.”

from: chapter 3 of The American Republic by Orestes Brownson (1865)

Those who truly hold governance are people who create, as does our Lord. Because what we make with our hands/minds is from what God has made us, we are granted responsibility over a power, not endowed with it. Thus we can set it on the rule of Christ, being creation and children of His heavenly Father, or we may out of foolish desire for ultimate self rule, stake this power in ourselves, in the personal and/or formal halls of Caesar. Indeed, those who play God fail to create good things for the generations, demanding they be given wealth and honor due to their social-economic status.

Just to be clear, this is a warning against the depravity of the love of money, as well as power, whether it be through socialism or capitalism. These two joined are an unholy alliance, though this is for a future post. No matter how a man puts it, Caesar will receive tribute for the services that can be rendered – order and enforcement in this life. By one’s own life, via a politician, or a businessman, the parental figure of a group of people, will become a cruel master when pursuing the status of the Creator in life. Indeed, render unto Caesar a portion of your creativity. But be warned, surrender unto God your very life itself, for He is the holy master of all Caesars, whom will answer to Him in the end.

“The right of the father over his child is an imperfect right, for he is the generator, not the creator of his child. Generation is in the order of second causes, and is simply the development or explication of the race. The early Roman law, founded on the confusion of generation with creation, gave the father absolute authority over the child—the right of life and death, as over his servants or slaves; but this was restricted under the Empire, and in all Christian nations the authority of the father is treated, like all power, as a trust. . . . How, from the right of the father to govern his own child, born from his loins, conclude his right to govern one not his child? Or how, from my right to govern my child, conclude the right of society to found the state, institute government, and exercise political authority over its members?”

from: chapter 3 of the American Republic

 

Let every person be subordinate to the higher authorities, for there is no authority except from God, and those that exist have been established by God. Therefore, whoever resists authority opposes what God has appointed, and those who oppose it will bring judgment upon themselves. For rulers are not a cause of fear to good conduct, but to evil. Do you wish to have no fear of authority? Then do what is good and you will receive approval from it, for it is a servant of God for your good. But if you do evil, be afraid, for it does not bear the sword without purpose; it is the servant of God to inflict wrath on the evildoer. Therefore, it is necessary to be subject not only because of the wrath but also because of conscience. This is why you also pay taxes, for the authorities are ministers of God, devoting themselves to this very thing. Pay to all their dues, taxes to whom taxes are due, toll to whom toll is due, respect to whom respect is due, honor to whom honor is due.

Romans 13:1-7

Let no one deceive you with empty arguments, for because of these things the wrath of God is coming upon the disobedient.So do not be associated with them. For you were once darkness, but now you are light in the Lord. Live as children of light, for light produces every kind of goodness and righteousness and truth. 10 Try to learn what is pleasing to the Lord. 11 Take no part in the fruitless works of darkness; rather expose them, 12 for it is shameful even to mention the things done by them in secret; 13 but everything exposed by the light becomes visible, 14 for everything that becomes visible is light. Therefore, it says:

“Awake, O sleeper,
and arise from the dead,
and Christ will give you light.”

Ephesians 5:6-14

Growing Pains of Life

When we think of a naturally painful period for us, one of the first immediate thoughts is puberty. For women, pregnancy. For men by a greater proportion, perilous labor. Aside from these specific conditions of living, there is still the general pangs of growing up, even far into old age. Our bodies have to break down in order to increase or maintain its strength when healing. Our minds have to be stretched by lesser known ideas and concepts to improve understanding. The soul/heart (for simplicity) has to withstand the trials of the day, so we become more resilient to the state of our individual and shared sinful state of reality. Comfort, pain, and healing are fundamental to man, either as a part of growth or for the sake of thriving in a world corrupted by evil.

Childhood is no less of these cycles. In fact, in some ways it is the most fragile time due to the higher frequency of them, for every year a boy or girl enters a new phase distinguishable from the previous. As much as they can be guided by loving parents and elders, they still need to overcome obstacles alone. If they are not encouraged or pushed to deal with them, that part of their life remains more infantile. Those not brought up to overcome physical pain resemble a babies sensitivity. Children left to be ignorant remain in child like dependence. No personal discipline in good results in lack of distinction from evil when it comes to choices.

Ironically, adults who attempt protecting children from pain as much as possible actually compound the discomfort over the years. Mind, body, and/or spirit struggles with poor pain tolerance. Every new opportunity is overwhelming in some way. Like a new born babe, they subconsciously cling for protection. In common extreme cases, anyone who does not guard their comfort as they see fit is against them, perhaps a bitter enemy only wanting to hurt/neglect for selfish gain. The thing is they are rather useless at dealing with evil, since the lesser cruelties of the world are enough to stop them from taking constructive action. Instead, they will follow anyone who makes lofty promises, only knowing how to destroy and take, not possessing the endurance to create and sustain.

“A man must fight long and bravely against himself before he learns to master himself fully and to direct all his affections toward God. When he trusts in himself, he easily takes to human comforts. The true lover of Christ, however, who sincerely pursues virtue, does not fall back upon comfort nor seek such pleasures of sense, but prefers severe trials and hard labors for the sake of Christ. . . . Divine comfort, then, is given in order to make a man braver in enduring adversity, and temptation follows in order that he may not pride himself on the good he has done. The devil does not sleep, nor is the flesh yet dead; therefore, you must never cease your preparation for battle, because on the right and on the left are enemies who never rest.”

from: chapter 9 of Book 2 Imitation of Christ by Thomas a ‘Kempis (1427)

One story from my childhood. I did a season of pewee football, lasting through the initial conditioning, never having experienced so much strain. It was surprising how much my very young body could do. The first day of practicing tackles with our gear, I was shocked by the physical contact. At the half way point, I was losing nerve, making a short plea with my father to quit what seemed too much. Without hesitation, as he slapped my shoulder pads, he said, “Do not be afraid to get hit. It is a part of the game. Do not quit when it is hard. Get back out there!” Because of his care and authority I obeyed, later earning one of my two cherished helmet decals for tackling, the other for endurance running. These decisions my father made continued my course in life for over all growth. He was not going to allow his flesh and blood to stay a child forever. One day I would become a man facing the injustice of the world.

We do not grow stronger just for our own sake. Heck, for mere security in life, it seems easier just to hide behind the abilities of others. More often than not, those who do so think too highly of their own mediocre ability, rarely having tested it through daily trial and error. No, we strive in spite of pain if not misery for things and people beyond our own comfort. It is how God made us. After all, did He not become a vulnerable mortal through Jesus Christ, humbling surviving then thriving into adulthood, prepared to wrestle with bodily suffering, fallen mankind, and the offerings of Satan. How tragic it is that we do not want to submit to the will of God, though we would rather be weak as well as a slave to sin, rather than strong and free under Christ’s sovereignty.

With pride we are angry that we have to experience pain. We are fine just the way we are, right? Well, considering most of our hurt is self inflected, lashed on others, and decided by those near us or far, I would say, we are not quite good as we believe. We have the inclination to behave childishly, because we lack the maturity God has called us to, being a living sacrifice, as opposed to demanding life from other men to cushion ours. Thus it is natural for some kind of hurt to truly give; discomfort comes with what is acquired to share. Those who avoid pain do not make decent givers of life.

“Therefore, since we have so great a cloud of witnesses surrounding us, let us also lay aside every encumbrance and the sin which so easily entangles us, and let us run with endurance the race that is set before us, fixing our eyes on Jesus, the author and perfecter of faith, who for the joy set before Him endured the cross, despising the shame, and has sat down at the right hand of the throne of God. For consider Him who has endured such hostility by sinners against Himself, so that you will not grow weary and lose heart. You have not yet resisted to the point of shedding blood in your striving against sin; and you have forgotten the exhortation is addressed to you as sons,

“My son, do not regard lightly the discipline of the Lord,
nor faint when you are reproved by Him;

For those whom the Lord loves He disciplines,
and He scourges every son He receives.”

It is for discipline that you endure; God deals with you as with sons; for what son is there whom his father does not discipline? But if you are without discipline, of which all have become partakers, then you are illegitimate children and not sons. Furthermore, we had earthly fathers to discipline us, and we respected them; shall we not much rather be subject to the Father of spirits, and live? For they disciplined us for a short time as seemed best to them, but He disciplines us for our good, so that we may share His holiness. All discipline for the moment seems not to be joyful, but sorrowful; yet to those who have been trained by it, afterwards it yields the peaceful fruit of righteousness. Therefore, strengthen the hands that are weak and the knees that are feeble, and make straight paths for your feet, so that the limb which is lame may not be put out of joint, but rather be healed.”

Hebrews 12:1-13