The Plans I Have For You

“A man driving a gold SUV took a carton of Newport cigarettes after his credit card was denied at the Exxon Tiger Mart on east Old Lincoln Highway in Langhorne at 2:37 a.m.” reads the May 16 Middletown Township police log. Just had to have that cigarette!

Unless you’ve been living on another planet, you know that opioid addiction has been getting lots of attention. Although there are many stop smoking ads out there, the attention cancer stick addiction gets pales in comparison to drug abuse.

Smoking is a habit hard to kick. Someone who kicked heroin once told me that he couldn’t stop smoking. In its infinite wisdom, the government increased taxes in an effort to help its subjects quit smoking, reasoning that they wouldn’t have money for smokes. This paternalistic effort, like many government nanny initiatives, is failing. Could the government be just using this as just a ploy to make money? Ricky, I’m shocked! https://www.bing.com/videos/search?q=ricky+i%27m+shocked+cassa+blanca&view=detail&mid=DEF7C64EBB1A9309EF37DEF7C64EBB1A9309EF37&FORM=VIRE 

A 12 Step Program in Levittown got lost in space after its leaders jettisoned themselves from the building and evidently turned the meetings into their own private club. The original leader left and flew south and passed the baton onto long time participants in the program who have learned to keep their bad habits at bay. I kept attending the program under the new leadership until one day when I showed up at the church I learned the group was meeting in someone’s home. The pastor gave me his phone number. I called but it was getting late and I decided not to go. I also remembered that I’d be smoked out. I didn’t save the number.

The original leader’s phone number is still on the website. Then, I called and got a recording that the number is not in service. I just called, got a recorded message for voice mail but it didn’t say whose number it is. I think someone else must have that number. http://12stepjourney.com/

The regular 12 step program attendees could keep their drinking problems at bay, but not smoking. They puffed away like chimneys up until the time they went into the one hour meeting and lit up as soon as they walked out the door. When we met outside when the church was closed for repairs, they smoked the whole time.

There were a lot of special programs going on at the church the day I found  that 12 Steps wasn’t meeting there.  I thought the crowd of kids caused the guys to decide to meet that night in someone’s house.  No matter when it was decided, I think moving the program into someone’s home is permanent and they like meeting there because they don’t have to go an hour without a smoke.

The 12 Step program really helped a lot of people. It helped me. There are still such programs operating in lower Bucks County, PA. They are free and close enough that homeless and needy people can take advantage of a program that can help them get their acts together. With the so-called support groups in Bucks County PA being defunded that allegedly helped the homeless, the churches should step up hosting 12 Step programs, where peers and leaders are genuinely interested in helping people and are not just about making money and building their egos.

The 12 Steps started with Alcoholics Anonymous but expanded to other bad habits and behaviors, including anxiety, depression, and feelings of resentment. The program gets to the root of problems.

Just saw a stop smoking ad on TV. It cited an example of someone who died from 2nd hand smoke. The off camera narrator pitched [sic] “if you know someone who needs help quitting smoking…”

As I said in my blog Sister Nicotine and The Holy Smokes, smoking is more than a bad habit to many – it’s a religion, a false one that is harmful.  God can help you overcome destructive behavior driven by character flaws. Recently I passed a sign in front of the community church in Newportville, PA that reads “You can’t walk with God if you run with the devil.”

For I know the plans I have for you,” declares the Lord, “plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future.” -Jeremiah 29:11

At Ease It’s Not a Disease!

Common parlance talks about drug and alcohol abuse as a disease, and labels these problems as “addictions” and “alcoholism”. This relatively modern lingo has entered our vocabulary in the 1930s, with the infestation of psychobabble.

Drug addiction has become an epidemic in our country, especially in Bucks County, PA. Drug counseling advocates have been calling for increasing places for treating this problem. The problem with calling it a disease is that it absolves the doper of  responsibility for his behavior. It’s to say it’s not his fault.

“Alcoholism” and “addictions” are simply sin. Wake up from your drunken stupor, as is right, and do not go on sinning. For some have no knowledge of God. I say this to your shame.” — I Corinthians 15:34.  “The primary problem is moral and spiritual, not medical, and cannot be addressed without that perspective,” wrote Franklin E. Payne, Jr., M.D. ,Associate Professor of Family Medicine at the Medical College of Georgia, in Augusta, Georgia.

The first step in the local 12 Steps Journey I participate in calls for people with drug, alcohol and other problems to own up to them:

“Step One- We admitted we were powerless over the effects of our separation from GOD-that our lives had become unmanageable.

I know that nothing good lives in me, that is, in my sinful nature. For I have the desire to do what is good, but I cannot carry it out. (Rom. 7:18)”

When we realize we have to admit our character flaws and seek God’s help, we are on the path to recovery.

Modern psychology doesn’t understand the real cause of behavioral problems and doesn’t know the right way to treat them. Dr. Payne explains “I have yet to see any patient’s chart with the diagnosis of ‘depression’ with reference to criteria that would fit any formal definition, such as the DSM-III-R. Yet, millions of patients carry this label and receive potent medications based upon this slipshod approach. Both the label and the medications have great potential for harm, as well as good. Further, such imprecision applies to virtually every area of medicine, not just psychiatric diagnoses. (A discussion of this ‘mal-practice,’ however, would require another paper in itself.)” 

All the King’s horses and all the King’s men, can’t put broken people back together again.

God can.

Defining drunkenness, drug abuse and other problems as a disease holds back recovery. If you have a true disease, such a sinusitis, you can take antibiotics. You can’t cure negative behaviors with dope.

The lyrics “Everything you think, do and say
Is in the pill you took today” in the 60’s song In the Year 2525 is not where it’s at, man!

Nor is Penndel Mental Health Center, which I’ve surmised apes the culture indicted in the song. Don’t go there or else you’ll wind up with PMS (Penndel Mentalhealth Syndrome).

Jesus is the great healer. There is hope when you confess your sins and seek His counsel.

Levittown We Have A Problem!

Drug addictions run rampant today, especially in Bucks County, PA, contributing to crime as well as ruining lives of individuals, their families and other loved ones. Alcohol abuse creates similar problems. Places to treat these problems are mushrooming.

There are other problems – road rage and other forms of anger, depression, anxiety, violence. People today are hurting. There is even an organization called No More Pain. http://www.nomorepaininc.org/ 

There is a common root to all problems, largely character flaws.  I regularly attend the 12 Steps Journey program where participants learn to deal with character flaws, such as anxiety, depression, and pent up anger and drug and alcohol addictions. http://www.12stepjourney.com/ Drug addiction is just one problem, which in places like lower Bucks County is now in the limelight.

There is a way out, if you are willing to make the effort, pursue healing, and submit to God.

I consider myself a recovering romantic.  If I had a theme song, it would be Robert Palmer’s Addicted to Love. “You’re gonna have to face it
You’re gonna have to face that you’re addicted to love

You might as well face it, you’re addicted to love”

And I’ve learned to admit to this and other problems and with God’s help, I shall overcome.

Addictions are described by Wikipedia as “a medical condition that is characterized by compulsive engagement in rewarding stimuli, despite adverse consequences…”  I’m not sure how much of the problem is biological, but it does entail flighty, compulsive behavior. Romantics are attracted to a person or an ideal, a fleeting feeling, which like a French Impressionist painting, immediately strikes your fancy but does not lead to further inquiry, as a Dutch 17th century landscape painting would do.

As a college professor told my class, Romanticism is an example of “the supremacy of emotion over intellect.”   The professor also said that the romantic would rather be there than here and in a different time.  Romantics tend to daydream.

William Wordsworth, one of the poets who helped launch the Romantic period in English literature in the late 18th and early 19th century, wrote “Poetry is the spontaneous overflow of powerful feelings: it takes its origin from emotion recollected in tranquility.”

Romanticism was a rebellion against the machine age, materialism and the intellectualism of The Enlightenment. Romantics were against rigid rules. They went the other extreme and rejected rules in general.

Another professor said the Romantics were a prototype of the Flower Children of the 60’s, which led to adverse consequences. A documentary on the hippies illustrated how communal living, where everyone and everything was held in common, including partners. There were no families. The kids belonged to everyone. But, as the documentary showed, as this free love mentality played out, people got jealous of other’s temporary partners.

There is no power in the flower.

Recently, I met a woman said she was deeply hurt after a guy played her. She said that she may end up going back to him, as “I am a hopeless romantic.”  The problem is that emotion is the driving force, and not the intellect. Learning more about one another and working through the vicissitudes of life together and learning to respect and care for one another is the right stuff for a successful relationship.

20th century writer and critic T.S. Eliot rejects the romantic notion of Wordsworth’s “emotion recollected in tranquility.”  and argues that emotion and intellect should be synthesized, with the intellect driving emotion.  http://www.literary-articles.com/2010/02/how-eliot-refutes-wordsworths-concept.html

Emotion can’t stand on its own. In Mel Brook’s Robin Hood Men in Tights a young lad approaches Robin and his men screaming his head off. The Merry Men wonder why; nobody was chasing the kid, nothing was wrong.

In my blogs, I have knocked modern psychology. But cognitive behavioral therapy, as the word “cognitive” suggests, has some merit. It requires people to think, rather than rely on fuzzy romantic emotions and effervescent feelings. This psychotherapeutic treatment helps patients understand the thoughts and feelings that influence behavior.  Emotion is driven by intellect, knowledge.

The key to healing, being right is knowing that God is working for your good. God knows what’s best for us, and the way to be in your right mind is found in scripture. The power of positive thinking, just feeling good about yourself needs a basis. Knowing God loves us and He knows what’s best for us is the key to getting straight, whether the problem be addictions or other problems that get us out of whack.

The first step in the 12 Step program is “We admitted we were powerless over the effects of our separation from GOD-that our lives had become unmanageable.” This is a step in the right direction. I’ve witnessed people who follow this path straighten out their lives.

In God, there is hope, including for the homeless.

Wait For It!

The past two years have been a test of faith — job loss, dog dying, problems with problem people, severed relationships, etc. This took a toll. And the latest, a car accident.

A Christian sister once told me that if you pray, then you don’t have to worry, and if you worry, why bother to pray. The two ideas are mutually exclusive, she implied.

The choice is either to ring your hands and become a nervous wreck or wait patiently for God to deliver you.

My mother used to cite an old German saying: “Why is it so soon we become old but so late we become smart?” My grandmother used to quote Proverbs 3:5 : “Trust in the LORD with all thine heart; and lean not unto thine own understanding.”

After I lost my job and could not get regular work, my funds dwindled. I soon scrambled to find food to eat. I found a local food pantry but that wasn’t enough. I volunteered at the food pantry. As my funds ran dry, I kept losing things, like the woman in an episode in The Twilight Zone, a spendthrift who struck a deal with the only creditor who would take her on, but with the condition that when she misses a payment, something is taken from her. First the cat, then the dog, then her kids, then her husband, then her house, then her car. For me, one of the things to go was my Internet service.

So I used the Wi-Fi at the local library. I befriended some homeless people I knew from the community center where I went to  meals for the homeless and those in need. I didn’t have my car and the told me about a free bus that takes them to other community meals. Some of the hosts also had food banks.

I was able to find sporadic work. At Christmas time, a local homeless advocate set up a Christmas party at the Levittown Public Library, where I was given Wawa and Walmart gift cards. I used the Walmart gift card to buy some insulated, waterproof boots, which I really needed.

After my house was sold, I got my car back and got money from various sources.

It was circumstance after circumstance where I couldn’t see a positive outcome but God provided for me in the end. Each time, I worried, but then felt silly after things went OK.

A little more than a week ago, a car turned into a car wash, darting right in front of me as I was driving the other way. Nobody got hurt, but the one of my wheels was smashed in and the car was undrivable. I was worried that I would not be able to take a cancer patient I’ve been taking care of to her appointment at the cancer center a few days later.

The next morning, my insurance company told me that Geico, the other party’s company, accepted full liability and I drove off in a rental car before noon, courtesy of Geico.

Through Geico’s website via email, I was able to buy another car, without draining my account too much.

By now, it’s finally starting to sink in that God has my back. I still have to be reminded, though.

I continue to associate with the homeless in lower Bucks County and still go to the community meals, which is not just about food but about fellowship. Some friends I meet there talk about their faith in God. There has been problems at the meals — arguments and other drama, but lately the meals have been more civil.

There are things people on a low budget can do for themselves. I found the chair yoga class very healthy. It helps my breathing, relaxing me and helps my well being. The physical part is good. I just ignore or laugh at the humanist-pagan elements, such as us being able to bring peace and light to our world on our own. One substitute teacher was hard core. For about five minutes, we waved our hand back and forth chanting “I am”. As I told a friend in the class “It’s the Popeye thesis; I am what I am!”

I’ve found Kava tea, a natural muscle relaxer, to help prevent cramps and to relax. Bananas also prevent cramps.

Another thing I found helpful is the 12 Steps Journey program. Based on the original 12 Step Program, this faith based program helps people get their act together, including quelling anxiety, restoring them by letting God mold them into what he designed them to be.

http://www.12stepjourney.com/ 

A Christian friend used to say “God’s got it!”

As a sergeant would tell the marching formation waiting for his instruction, “wait for it”!

 

 

The Homeless and The Druggies

Almost two years ago, a source told me that guy who called himself “the librarian” at the  public library in Levittown, PA stated that homeless people are one step below drug addicts. After he harassed me and I contacted a county commissioner, he soon was gone.  This, by the way, was before authorities associated me with the homeless.

Homeless people are that way for different reasons, including as just a result of the economy. People are in recovery houses because of their addiction, which usually leads to stealing and other antisocial behavior.

A former homeless guy who frequented the Levittown library and the nearby Veteran’s Memorial complained that the homeless get a bad rap and that it’s people from the recovery houses that have been causing problems at the library and surrounding area.

As I mentioned in other blogs, it was the druggies who precipitated the evictions on the homeless living in the woods by the Levittown library.

Yet, there is prejudice against the homeless. Even the Community Relations and Development Director at the local Salvation Army echoed the sentiments of anti-homeless special interests in the community. She said that people visiting the library “don’t like” the homeless people being there, adding that they stink, spread food out all over the tables, and dress shabbily. I told her this isn’t the case and if someone breaks the rules, they should be told about it like everybody else and that homeless people have a right to be at a public library.

So it’s OK to keep people away from a public place simply because people don’t like them? This is not what the guys who are honored at the nearby Veteran’s Memorial fought and died for!

So here’s a Salvation Army person, a former Major who once helped run a rehab center, kowtowing to the world’s judgementalism. When I told her I’ve been sticking up for the homeless, including contacting commissioners, she snapped “what’s that going to do?”  She added that the librarian has  complete sovereignty and belittled me. She asked “didn’t your parents teach you to respect authority?”  It’s no wonder that she goes through a door marked “private”, as she was demoted from Major (joke).

Many of the druggies in the Levittown have gotten mixed in with the homeless. After getting kicked out of recovery houses, many of them end up with the homeless, and cause problems. This may be one reason people don’t like the homeless.

There was a town hall meeting in Bristol Township, PA on Thanksgiving eve to address the problem of recovery houses in the area to protect the community and property values, while helping people with their addictions. The council did not approve the motion by council vice-president for a moratorium on recovery houses because they believed it would be overrided by the Feds.  http://levittownnow.com/2015/11/27/officials-announce-support-for-recovery-house-moratorium/ 

Drug addiction is a problem, especially in Bucks County, PA, not just for the addict but for the communities.

In one neighborhood, it was reported that crime greatly increased since a recovery house moved in.

Part of the problem is the recovery houses themselves. There have been reports of overcrowding,

Recently I met a guy who runs a recovery house in the area. He pointed out that all the recovery houses are not bad, and that he runs a tight ship. He said the neighbors don’t even know we’re here.  Some recovery houses, he said “are just a business.”

The state of Pennsylvania has been addressing how to regulate recovery houses, mainly for safety.

People running recovery houses need to be held accountable, not just for safety factors such as overcrowding, but for professionalism — that they do what’s best for the addicts and the community.

Even if the recovery houses get their act together, there still should be a moratorium on them.  Sometimes, no matter what you do, addicts will continue their destructive behavior, to themselves and others. Addicts have been coming from outside of Bucks County, PA for the recovery houses. With more houses we risk more rogue druggies who, like the Frankenstein monster, are set loose on the community.

One recovering alcoholic told me that addicts should have to suffer the consequences of their destructive behavior — that we should not make it too easy for them to get into a recovery house, so there would not be a revolving door of addicts who aren’t seriously trying to resolve their problem.   Good point. This friend seems to be getting his act together.

Another friend with an alcohol problem isn’t doing as well. He started out well, after people tirelessly ministered to him and after finally coming to grips what he’s doing to himself and people he loves, and went to a short term treatment center. Less than a week before the program ended, he stormed out of a meeting and since has been getting kicked out of friend’s places.

The last time he got kicked out, which was the second time this friend kicked him out, his girlfriend asked me to pick him up and take him to the library. I told her that I’m not going to bail him out everytime he screws up. This kind of thing makes him too comfortable in his choices and he doesn’t realize the consequences of his actions.My friend took a step or two, but has a long way to climb before reaching the top of the 12 steps. My friend who is getting his act together said that many addicts don’t advance after a few steps.

At the local 12 Steps program I’ve been attending the past several months, I’ve seen people come and go. One night we had to set up extra tables. There has been a handful of people who have attended the program regularly since I started going. Now advanced, they mentor others and they have pinch hitted for the guy who regularly leads the meetings.

This local program is not just for drunks and druggies, but for people with other problems, such as anxiety and anger management.

Check it out.  http://www.12stepjourney.com/

Up On The Roof

“When this old world starts a getting me down
And people are just too much for me to face
I’ll climb way up to the top of the stairs
And all my cares just drift right into space…

Up on the roof”

— James Taylor, Up on The Roof

People are sometimes just too much for me to face, and I feel like having Scotty beam me up and I’ll drift right into space. Indeed, we all need an occasional retreat, a time to stand down, recuperate, reboot, but we have to come back and face the real world.

In my last blog, I talked about showing grace to difficult people. I wrote that there must be rules and borders. But when people don’t follow rules they agreed to it’s tempting to give up on them — write them off.

I was brought up old school. When I was in elementary school, there was an area marked off in the school yard as “out of bounds”. Kids didn’t dare cross the line and go “out of bounds”. No! For shame for shame, if we did. Unfortunately today, in the tradition of The Noble Savage, borders are evaporating, between countries and are codified in the term “Generation X.”

Some people close to me are having trouble following rules and are going out of bounds. One is undergoing chemotherapy for lung cancer. Yet, like seven out of ten smokers who contract lung cancer, according to information at the cancer center, she continues to smoke, despite continued warnings and explanations why she needs to stop from the medical community. She’s also a sporadic drunk, overdoing wine on four occasions since I met her a year ago.

She’s also taken other substances to excess.

A nurse said that a little red wine, unlike a little smoking, is good for her, but because she’s underweight and because of her medical condition, excess alcohol can have a devastating effect.

Not only is this creating problems for her; it’s creating problems for me because I’m left with the mess. Her destructive, reckless behavior is driven by her attitude that she just wants to give up on life — she has no reason to live. I’ve tried to help her change this attitude, and it’s tough.

Frustrated, and angry, I lost my temper again and started to put her down — just giving up on her.

I realize my attitude was wrong. A Christian sister pointed out that my friend has been suffering from a disease that’s been eating away at her for about a year and that the right thing to do is to show compassion and have patience with her.

I am calling myself out on this blog, as I don’t make exceptions.

Christians are sinners saved by grace, and I am no exception. As the apostle Paul wrote, don’t let sin dominate in your life. The key is to confess your shortcomings to God and ask his help to overcome them.

I apologized to my friend and am striving, with God’s help, to show more compassion and patience with her, while trying to hold her to the rules, which she agreed to, and setting borders.

Instead of just being an escape from the world, I climbed the stairway to heaven to seek God’s help in dealing with the world. As the Bible says, be in the world but not of the world.

The world, as evidenced in Bucks County, PA, is in bad shape and needs help.  Bucks County is number one for heroine addiction in Pennsylvania and number two in the country.  People are dying.  When I went to my 40th high school reunion in neighboring Montgomery County a few years back, I learned that several of my classmates died from drug overdoses.

A little while back, I overheard an eye opening conversation in the men’s room at the public library in Levittown, PA.  A guy remarked that drugs are getting more deadly and added that addicts don’t care; the only thing that’s important to them is getting high.

There is a big homeless problem in Bucks County; many people struggle to find a place to live.  The government is failing the homeless.

We live in a hurting world.  The Bible believing churches need to step up their efforts to minister to the world, though positive thought and deed — by reaching out to people.  In lower Bucks County, churches have been doing a lot to meet the material and spiritual needs of hurting people.  We need more.

One of the hosts at a community meal for the homeless and needy said that she wished her small church could do more for people.  Besides graciously providing material things, they have been making their “friends without walls”, as they call them, feel at home and wanted.  Collectively, ordinary people can do extraordinary things.

Being there for someone with any need, such as depression, goes a long way.  This blog illustrates how concerned Christians can help others.  http://www.theclause.org/2014/03/mental-illness-the-christian-perspective/

The church needs to have an positive affect on society, influencing society and not vice versa.  One’s  faith should not be privately engaging but socially irrelevant.  An good example of this is a free program that addresses people need help is the 12 Step Journey Program held in churches in Levittown.  http://www.12stepjourney.com/

“We are therefore Christ’s ambassadors, as though God were making his appeal through us. We implore you on Christ’s behalf: Be reconciled to God.”

— 2 Corinthians 5:20

 

Teach an Old Dog New Tricks?

There’s a saying “you can’t teach an old dog new tricks.”  That’s not always the case.  I’ve learned new tricks.

Sometimes I don’t listen to my master, and I end up getting in trouble.  Once I almost got hit by a car.  Doing what’s right isn’t only good for me, but the people around me.  I don’t want to disappoint people around me, especially my loved ones.

Once I ran away from home and ran wild with the other dogs.  I drank heavily and hung out at the pool halls, where I became a pool shark.  Nobody expected a dog to play pool so well, if at all. I was able to get a lot of beer money that way.

“As a dog returns to its vomit, so a fool repeats his foolishness.” –Proverbs 26:11, is another saying.

As I said in an earlier post on Facebook, before I point out, in a loving manner, someone engaged in destructive, sinful behavior, I need to be a good example.  I need to put my own doghouse in order.  And believe me, that can be a lot of work.

Recently I’ve seen people engaged in destructive behavior, which negatively affects them and those around them.  I want to bark out a warning to them; it’s like they are riding a log heading towards Niagara Falls.  That falls comes to mind because I remember my master watching over and over again the Three Stooges short where when Moe hears the fall’s name, he goes nuts:  Nie Agara Falls!  Step by step, inch by inch and I…

I digress.

There are a few homeless people who have engaged in drunken binges and have become drunk and disorderly in public places, alienating themselves from others and getting into Dutch with the authorities.  I saw them growling at one another.  If they were dogs they would have bit each other, but their folly resulted in minor injuries.  The biggest hurt was the animosity and alienation between people who should be helping one another, that resulted.

I get as crazy as Moe does when I witness this.  These people suffer the consequences of their actions, realize they are wrong, and then go right back to their foolishness.  This has been happening a lot at the Veteran’s memorial, which shows disrespect for other people who visit the memorial and the veterans, for whom it’s supposed to honor.

It’s getting to the point that if someone mentions “The Memorial”, I start to get rabid and utter “Slowly I turned, step by step, inch by inch, and I grabbed these fool’s pant legs and shook my head violently to shake some sense into them!”  If you see my growling at certain people, you’ll know why.

People need to stop making excuses for their behavior.  Homeless life is ruff, but that doesn’t justify anti-social behavior.  As is the case with homeless people, it’s assumed that dogs bite.  On one occasion, when I was walking with my master, some strangers who approached us asked “does your dog bite?”

My master responded “no, do you?”

Homeless people don’t have to bite.  The first step for someone with issues is to admit that he or she does not have the power to overcome a life that has become unmanageable on one’s own.

There are 11 more steps:

http://12stepjourney.com/ http://12stepjourney.com/

Besides overcoming one’s spiritual problems, there is an opportunity to ameliorate the actual problem of not having a home.  http://www.timespub.com/2015/04/30/working-for-a-place-to-stay/#more-45529

Between the 12 Steps program and Gimmee Shelter for the homeless, maybe we can just take a bite out of homelessness.

Rage Against the Machine

In the distance, he was screaming at people, hands flailing and moving around like a firehose that got loose.  These people were thought to be friends.  “I don’t want anything to do with you…” he yelled.  We could hear him from 100 yards away.

“I’m sick and tired of…”.  He went on and on, raging at the top of his lungs.  He walked away, and started coming back, circling the area where people were congregated, like a lion circling its pray.

“I hope you die!,” he told a woman he was allegedly helping.

This wasn’t the first time the guy flipped out.  But it was the most vitriolic I’ve seen him.

He was full of deep seated anger, mainly about being homeless.  The booze was just a catalyst.

James 4, 1-2 says “what causes quarrels and causes fights among you?  Is it not this, that your passions are at war with you?  You desire and do not have, so you murder.  you covet and cannot obtain, so you fight and quarrel.  You do not have, because you do not ask.”

The raving mad man became homeless after losing his job.  For awhile, he blamed circumstances for losing his job, but there was a moment of truth when he admitted that his drinking created the problem.   Evidently, there is something he wants, desires and doesn’t get it, so he spews out venom.

He’s at war with himself and the rest of the world.

On one occasion, after he was forced to pack up his tent site and relocate, he complained to a law enforcement official who had a friendly talk with him about not being able to be in the shelter.  The lawman reminded him “you were kicked out because of drinking.”  The lawman shared that he had had a drinking problem in the past, but evidently was able to control it.  “Nobody on earth”, he told the homeless man, could solve your problems, alluding to needing a power higher than us, God.

Acknowledging there is a power higher than us and the only source that could ultimately keep us on the right track, is one of the 12 steps in the 12 Steps – A Spiritual Journey program, modeled after the Alcoholics Anonymous program of 1935.     http://12stepjourney.com/

All the King’s Horses and All the King’s men in the mental health community doesn’t seem to be able to put Johnny and Susie back together again.

An inexpensive alternative to mental health centers is the 12 Step Journey program.  Facilitated by a designated leader, this peer-to-peer program uses the 12 Steps and Biblical principles to help people with life’s problems.

On the same page is Jay Adams, pastor and counselor, who back around 1970, started a revolution in the church.  Dr. Adam’s thesis is that the church is better equipped to handle mental problems than is secular psychiatry and psychology.  “God’s word is sufficient” to handle any problems.  God wrote the book on human behavior.

http://www.nouthetic.org/about-ins/our-faculty/8-about-ins/6-jay-adams-biography

The journey to healing is long, but worth the trip, and the right way to go.  John Bunyan details this in his allegory of the soul Pilgrim’s Progress.

Well pilgrim…?