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Conspiracies…

(About a 5 min read.. it’s sad but true…)


I was raised a skeptic… my father was diagnosed with clinical paranoid schizophrenia… we didn’t discover it until much later in life… he was a unique man… I couldn’t ever connect with him…


In his best attempt to bond with me… he would tell me vague stories about the Vietnam war… it was tragic… but I could see it in his eyes how he would relive it while trying to explain it… his eyes would glass over… he would look away and begin talking to himself… laughing at some unheard humor and then I would quickly realize I wasn’t part of the conversation anymore…

The condition got worse as I got older… the “talking to himself” element became normal… the part that really affected me was the paranoia…


As a kid I was fearless… and yet… fearful… if I was in control, I was fearless… summers in the 80’s were wild and free… I would leave early in the mornings and come home late in the evenings… I wasn’t much of a trouble maker… more of an adventure seeker… I wanted life to be a thrill and I was young and indestructible… in my own mind…


There were many nights that my dad would call for a family bible study… we would all sit down in the living room… and read the book of Revelation… I would always shiver… he would teach us his military perspective on the End Times… sometimes he would give us the details of war and tell us to get ready to die… (I never thought I would reach the age of 18…) other times he would let us watch the movie 666 or A Thief in the Night… to help us better grasp the coming doom-filled end that was just around the corner… he was a firm believer in the rapture… and any doomsday conspiracy theorist that would pop up proclaiming how they cracked the code of when Jesus would return…


We were too poor to prep… it made life chaotic and uneasy… I remember my father explaining to me the reason that we’re being evicted… for the umpteenth time… was because we need to be in a safer zone… when Jesus returns… moving inland was safer than the coast…

As a kid my already creatively gifted mind was constantly bombarded with scenarios of survival… for instance, I would take extra socks to school in case something happened and I wasn’t prepared… (my dad would tell stories about soldiers getting foot rot from wet socks…)


Fear wasn’t my friend… however, it was my companion… I grew up with a strange view of life… as I reached my adulthood, I saw the world as “out to get me”…


When my late wife and I were first married we went to Maine for our honeymoon… so much fear had been spoken into us that when we arrived in New York with a 10 hour layover, I was too afraid to leave the train station… I was convinced that we would be mugged or a tragedy would occur…


Fear was familiar… most of the time I didn’t recognize that I was walking in fear… it was too typical to me… I saw it a as somewhat of a “spidey-sense” like some kind of twisted wisdom… I learned too late that you become what you behold and lived the greater part of my life waiting for the hammer to drop… the world to end… the pink slip to come… the eviction notice to be on my door… I would blame the 1% of the world that assumably made all the money in the world leaving the rest of us to struggle and suffer… I treated the world as though it was one great big conspiracy…

My whole life was built and thrived on the emotional drive behind impending doom… but as I got older… I realized that I made it to 19… then 20… then 25… and by the time i was 30… I remember sitting on a job site floor… staring out at the pine trees… and anger started to well up inside me… I began to realize that I had deep roots of lies…


I came to the reality of three important things that changed my life forever:

1. In my experience… conspiracy = fear…

2. Skepticism = lack of wisdom…

3. Hope deferred makes the heart sick…

I chose that whatever happened to me in my life from that day forward… I wouldn’t fear… that choice changed my life… I became more confident and able to live a more stress-free life…


About a decade later… the disciplines I had developed took a lot of willpower and morning mantras… until I came to Jesus…


Many people talk of physical healings as the greatest miracles… for me… it was my heart… I have my problems and still find myself feeling cornered at times when the pressures and the stakes get high… but I’ve found a new source of strength… I’ve found a perfect peace… and love like I’ve never known before… in relationship with God…


Thanks for listening!


Michael



🤍


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