Tuesday, May 15, 2012
We all have voices in our heads. I think, though, that all the different voices resolve down to two - and they each have a story to tell.
The first story is 'you are not good enough' - you are a failure, an impostor, you do not belong here, go away, destroy yourself, cease to be a burden to the world.
This first story is the one that leads to depression and despair, to hatred and vengeance, to strife and division. The story teller is the enemy, the accuser, the voice of despite.
The second story is 'you are my beloved, with you I am well pleased' - I made you and I love you and behold it is good - come and enter into your inheritance as my child.
This second story leads to the fruits of the spirit - love, joy, peace, gentleness, self-control and all the rest. The story teller is the maker of heaven and earth.
When we hear our voices, we need to decide who it is that is speaking, and which story they are telling. Most of all, when we realise that it is the first voice, we need to rebuke it and say 'Get behind me Satan, you do not have in mind the things of God but the things of men'. Actually, the best way to get rid of the first voice isn't the formal and stern rebuke, it's ridicule - the enemy really can't stand being made fun of, because it is the one thing that brings home to him just how ridiculously powerless he is. It is by continuously refreshing our memory and consciousness of the second story - and the second story teller - that we become infected with laughter and joy, and the enemy is sent scurrying back beneath his rock. We need to have the attitude 'was that your auntie?'
This is for someone particular in the parish, for other friends, for Dave Walker who did the wonderful cartoon at the top, and, of course, it's for me too.