The Cesspool

There are people that we have all met who are chronic complainers. Those who thrive on negative thoughts and aim to pull us into their “feelings world”. This feeling oriented world is a cesspool of unresolved issues that cannot be escaped unless we have some clear understanding of how our feelings work.

 Feelings are designed to help us grow and develop ideas about life, rather than push us into a corner. They point toward other things… like a smile might express a response to an act of kindness or anger might be a response to being poked in the eye. Feelings are God given signs to help us process experience in a way that protects us and aids in our safe progress through life. When we do not understand our feelings properly and they become our “identity” rather than our “helpers”, it is called addiction.

The key to our freedom as followers of Christ, is to note that feelings are not who we are. They are no more than a response to what we have experienced.

 One important way to see how we are processing our feelings is by looking at how we speak.

 Complaining is our way of denying our personal responsibility and the “blame game” is the way we shift the burden on to somebody else’s shoulders… at least in our hearts and minds. 

 Jesus said “out of the abundance of the heart, the mouth speaks (Mt 12:34). I encourage people to take serious inventory of the way they speak.

 Most negative people have very few friends… they identify with their feelings more than they should and are addicted to the energy released when others agree with them about their cesspool. 

Key Verse: “ Consider it all joy when you face various trials because the testing of your faith produces perseverance” (Jms 1:2-3).

 That which would allow us to accurately progress through the trial is often missed, because we are to quick to complain and shift the blame. To break the tendency takes three spiritually important activities:

  1.   Consider… stop and recognize the thought process making sure that you identify with the real issue at hand. 
  2.  With joy… use the correct emotion in the process of dealing with the trial. Notice this is a choice not a learned response or some reaction to trial.
  3.  Produce… the fruit of your life is the measure of your emotional balance. Anyone lacking fruit is in need of the Holy Spirit’s direction, because when we set our hearts on the Spirit we produce, but when we set our hearts on the flesh we produce nothing more than dead stuff (Rom 8:13).

 So we can hear in the statement made by James that focusing on how the fruit is produced makes the trial significant. It does not diminish the difficulty of the trial, but it does remove us from the cesspool that Satan would like us to sit around in.

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