|1 Corinthians 6: 8-11|
In recalling the past, I sometimes tend to avoid delving too deeply into things I am now ashamed of.
This reluctance isn't always an issue when having a conversation with someone.
As long as a hearer is listening, I may keep sharing.
Yet the valve of “too much information” does have its limit, even in open conversation.
It is the writing experience which is more controlled and easily censored.
My reluctance is that I worry I will reveal too much in my writing.
The fear is acknowledging my carnality, which is exactly what another human being easily identifies with.
I am a man and thus I have failed.
I notice the cracks in the armor when I discuss my past professions, occupations and jobs.
I highlight the shiny while conveniently omitting the embarrassing.
The cracks are sealed when my narration weaves in the grace along with the gore, for the grace is always realized after the fact, not during.
I've done shameful things and I still wrestle with my humanity.
I still struggle with prejudice and racism.
This was a battle I believed I had overcome at some point.
But the temptations persist.
The battle can be continually won when humility to one's past is heeded.
The cultural programming has yet to be completely removed due to years of subconscious uploading.
Although I can identify the false narratives in the media, my mind at times repeats these falsehoods when I witness something in the real world...and the battles commence.
So recently when I noticed a man had a drug problem, I too reflected on my past substance abuse.
Yet I was reluctant to delve too far into the mud of past failures while writing about it.
To acknowledge I was self-destructive isn't too Christian-like, especially after having come to know God and what He did for me through Christ...then walking away and giving up on any external effort.
I wasn't literally trying to kill my person (maybe not consciously, but the results were showing otherwise), because the manner I was living was quite dangerous and destructive.
When I was sleeping around with several women without using protection, it seemed I was asking for an affliction in my flesh and I was being careless with their health.
But no such affliction occurred.
When I gambled money lent to me by a relative, and other monies I had stolen, it seemed I was asking to be caught and found out.
But that never happened.
When I got into that fight with an ex, and I struck her in the side, and she and her sister later lied to the police about the entire ordeal and I found myself in the back of a police vehicle with handcuffs for bracelets (a first), it seemed I was finally going to receive what my bad choices and rebellious ways had wrought.
Yet I was let go minutes later after her record was perused by the police while I had none to read about.
Still, all of my good deeds and good intentions went to nothing because I continued using that woman only for her sex and nothing else.
When I struck her in her side it was to my shame that I had lost control and fallen to the level of yet another sad statistic of domestic violence.
The pattern of mankind is no surprise when we speak, listen, read or write the experiences of our humanity.
Yet it is scary recollecting or reading the dark paths we've once treaded, maybe due to fear of repeating the course.
It is the breaking of patterns, breaking the chains, that release us from the destructive path that is so common.
Part of the process is confessing our failures and shortcomings.
Revealing what is dark so the light can shine where the darkness had its stronghold.
Doing so enables us to realize the grace that was there all along...and sparks gratitude and thanksgiving to He has been calling us heavenward all the while.