My mentor pointed out that I am in a much better place than I was a year ago, so I thought that I would scribe for my benefit, and any of you guys who are curious, what I think the factors were that have gotten me here.
1) I forced a lifestyle change. Alone in a single apartment I was too susceptible to my lonely vices. Now I live with roommates who not only see just about everything I do, but also bring more joy to those things.
2) I had a traumatic experience. I broke up with a wonderful girl, saw my own depravity, and depended fully and often on God’s hand as He lifted me out of the ensuing depression. . . to become a more humbled, yet confident Ross, who now knows the joy of holding that quiet, strong hand. Thank you, kind Captain.
3) Working a consistent prayer/reading/memorization schedule into almost every day. I try to get away for 15 minutes twice during my work day to memorize some verses for 5, read a chapter for 5, and pray for 5. Lately I’ve strangely found enough reward and stability in this habit that I’ve started attempting to also rendezvous with Him in the morning, or my favorite, in front of a big open window during a rainstorm after the sun has gone down immediately after work.
4) Professional counseling. Though our minds are tightly tied to our spirits, I think some emotional healing is best done with a doctor of the psychological type. The medicine of “my identity in God” is at the root of these treatments, but the exercise of talking them through with someone and hearing their insights is like the physical therapy that is just as necessary to heal me.
5) Controlling my eyes. I think I’ve learned that the battle subtly begins at the very first moment of contact… including what my eyes encounter. Getting disciplined in the art of controlling my eyes conditioned my brain to be in control of all my thoughts better.
6) Mentors can give consistency and orientation to a life like a compass on a ship that has the whole see to wander, filled with caves and sea monsters, both ready to swallow me whole.
Ok, I hope this assessment doesn’t sound prideful. I know that I could slip up at any time… in fact i momentarily have at the most surprising times, but it is the gradual consistent ascension will get us there.