A Prayer of a Broken Heart

“And Lord, I pray to you through the storm. Not because I am strong, but because I never was.
 
As paths around me crumble and there seems to be no way forward, I walk towards you, on the path I cannot see.
 
Though the world around me my disappear, and everything of value to me may be taken away, I cling to you who is of greatest value, who no one and nothing can take away.
 
Though pain and hardships have become my daily bread, and I feel too weak to walk forward again, still I follow you. Not for what I get, but because you are, and have always been the only way.
 
Lord, though you pull me beyond the extents of my endurance, the bounds of my wisdom, the distance of my foresight, still I will trust in you. For the limits I can go are but a drip in the ocean from the journey you can take me on.
 
So Lord, do not forget your servant, though he is battered and bruised, still he clings to you. Though the days come where I feel too weak to stand back up again, I shall crawl towards you and cry to you until these days shall end.
 
I know all you have taken away can be returned 10 fold at a mere word from you. But even if my life were to end at this time, I know my life has not been for waste in your plan. No matter the results, no life spent chasing after you first-most can be considered a failure. And so I shall pick myself up yet again, shakily on tired fight, and continue to cry out to you, until the day when it all makes sense.
 
You cannot expect a simple life if you wish to let God do amazing things through you.
 
Amen”
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Prayer is NOT a Cop Out

When it comes to responses to stressful and overwhelming times, few remarks lead to quite the negative feedback and concern as “I’m praying about it.”
 
“Prayer” has become synonymous with “Copping out” or “I don’t really want to change anything so I’ll just say this again.” To say “I’m praying about it.” often leads to responses such as “Well that’s good and all, but what are you DOING?!”
 
Now if this was only with regards to non-christians, I would fully understand this. If you do not believe in the existence of an all powerful God, who allows all things to happen like an intricately woven tapestry, so detailed that even those who attempt to destroy it by doing evil, only end up showing it’s beauty all the more… then it would make sense that praying to this would be on par with speaking to an imaginary friend to go earn some extra spending money for you. However, more often than not, it is the Christians I know who hold the greatest apprehension towards praying about problems, which makes me believe we don’t fully understand quite what prayer is.
 
Prayer is not a passive activity. It is not a chant you speak while attempting to pass the time hoping that things will change. Communication is not a one-way deal, so why would prayer ever be?
 
Prayer is opening yourself up.
Prayer is accepting you are lost and need help.
Prayer is listening for direction with a willingness to take it.
Prayer is accepting that you need to change.
Prayer is abandoning your right to feel bitter and betrayed.
Prayer is a willingness to move forward.
Prayer is a willingness to forgive.
Prayer is a willingness to grow.
Prayer is a humility to submit.
Prayer is an acceptance to repent.
Prayer is laying your heart bare on the altar and showing your trust in the creator of all things to treat it with respect.
 
One of the greatest descriptions I’ve heard of the proper mindset for prayer was an explanation I heard in grade school for why knights bowed before the king. It was more than just a ritual. The knight was lowering his guard, as the king placed a sword near his neck. It was showing with his actions that he was willing to be placed in such a vulnerable position before the king, because he trusted his life in the king’s hands.
 
We are a results-based culture. We see the results of someone’s life, and then instantly draw conclusions as to what led to it.
 
Someone has failed? They must be weak.
Someone has succeeded? They must be strong.
Someone looks a certain way? They must be ___.
Someone does a certain thing? They must be ___.
 
Because of this, we often treat our faith the same way. We believe the value of our faith is the results we bring forth through it. If we can’t lead people to Christ, if we can’t be self sufficient, if we can’t avoid falling into temptation, if we can’t make some huge impact on the world… then we will be of no use to God.
 
THIS IS BACKWARDS THINKING!
 
YOU do not do things that are of use to God. GOD does things that are of use through you!
 
Even the non-christians of the world. The skeptics, the tyrants, the cynics, the haters…. Everything they have is because God gave them. Everything God gave them is for His love for them and for His plan.
 
Does not the rain fall on the crops of sinners as well as saints? Did not God raise up Nebuchadnezzar for His purposes as well as David? There is no blessing in this world that does not come from God. Nor does He withhold His wrath from those who abuse His blessings.
 
Your duty is to follow where God leads and give Him your best. The results are up to God.
 
Much like Job, David, Joshua, and even Jesus Himself… you can do everything right in life and still fail hard. Still be persecuted. Still be a social outcast deemed a failure by human standards.
 
It is not what you DO that will determine the outcome. It is God alone.
 
Despite what many Christians seem to think, is not a cop out answer to encourage laziness. In fact, I would go so far as to argue that true laziness comes from those who try to keep control in their own hands, as in practice, they have a much easier time of it.
 
Focus your energy on trusting God. On submitting yourself to Him. To trusting Him through the fires, and acting as He wishes even when it’s unfair. To turning the other cheek when you’re hurt. To striving to improve yourself and know Him better even when it seems to get you nowhere. To steadfastly follow Him even when you are ridiculed for it.
 
Do you think praying and trusting God is easy? To think that is to suggest you’ve never truly tried it yourself!
 
Get up off your butt! Stop wasting your anxiety and stress over things that were never in your control in the first place! Your battle is to trust and follow God! That is more than you can handle in the first place! Stop killing yourselves to ensure the results YOU think God wants from you. That was never your place to begin with.
 
Live chasing after God. Leave the results to Him. Trust in Him.
 
Amen.

Feeding Thousands

When Jesus broke 5 loaves to feed 5000, there were 12 baskets left over.
 
When Jesus broke 7 loaves to feed 4000, there were 7 baskets left over.
 
this has been a part of the bible that has really challenged me this way. As well (if you read Mark 8:17-21), you realize this was done on purpose.
 
See, a lot of my mind still gets locked into the logic of the parable of the talents. The man with 5 talents invests to gain 5 more, the man with 2 talents invests to gain 2 more, the man with 1 talent creates the first “hedge” fund and it turns out very poorly for him. But the logic is there. They invest what God gives them, and if God gave them a lot, they earn a lot. If God gave them a little they earned a little more. This is mathematical. This is logical. But the two times Jesus feeds people with a small amount of bread TOTALLY FLIPS THIS ON ITS HEAD!
 
Jesus feeds more people with less bread and gets more left over…. think about this for a moment. The first time, Jesus has to feed about 1000 people per each loaf of bread, and ends up with 12 baskets full afterwards. The second time, Jesus only has to feed 4000 people and he has 7 full loaves! That means he has to feed a little less than 571 and a half people with each loaf of bread. If feeding 1000 people/loaf led to 12 baskets left over, you’d assume feeding 571 people/loaf would logically lead to near 24 baskets!
 
But instead there were 7…
 
Why is this? Was there not enough yeast in the bread the second time? Did Jesus get better at performing the miracle so there wouldn’t be as much waste? Were the 4000 a touch more glutenous than the original 5000???
 
If you read Mark 8:17-21, you realize Jesus did it on purpose… to show them that it is God who provides, not them.
 
And this is something we still struggle with today. I know I do. It’s so easy to feel like God can only use you as far as you resources can provide. “I mean God… I’d love to do a lot more for you if I was rich and famous… or had a working body…. But I don’t, so I’m gonna dream small right now and hope the day will come in the future where I can do the big!
 
It doesn’t work like that!
 
What God wants from us isn’t power he can wield, resources he can distribute, influence he can spread. God doesn’t tell us to bring everything we’ve managed to acquire to him so that He can send it out where He chooses. In fact, most times in the Bible, Jesus told people “Get rid of what you’ve earned, it’s just going to hold you back anyways, and I’ve got bigger things in store for you!”
 
God doesn’t ask for us to provide for Him to make a way. God tells us to follow as He provides to make a way. God tells us to trust in Him so He can use us to accomplish the plans we could never have planned. God doesn’t ask for us to make his plans work. God asks us to let Him show us how His plans work.
 
So the next time you think of all the things you would do if you only had the money, strength, fame, time… look at what you have right now… pray to God about what He wants you to do with it… those are your 5 loaves, so keep 12 baskets handy on standby!

Good and Evil

The Lord has used both the good and the evil for His plan equally. He’s used both Babylon and Israel. Both warlords and peacekeepers. Both…. Well it’s hard to think of two politicians that morally contrast each other these days but if there are two He’s used them! Not that it is in His plan for those to do evil… nor His desire… He gave us the free will to do as we choose and the responsibility for our actions that come with it. But so wise a God is He that even those who choose to destroy His creation, he can plan around and make something stronger and more beautiful out of. Much like Eru, the supreme being of the Silmarillion, though Melkor attempted many times to throw the song out of tune to make something ugly out of it, with a few changed notes, Eru made it a beautiful melody again.
 
But how can God, a being who is supreme good, possibly work using those who are evil?? How could he let those who go against Him rise up in power?? These are questions that throw many into bitterness and confusion. For those who already have the question of “How can a good God let bad things happen?” isn’t this a question which could set them over the edge??
 
Well what is evil?
 
We tend to view good and evil as two opposing forces born into existence for no reason other than to fight each other till their deaths… but is this really the case? Is evil really a “thing” that exists on it’s own separate from good? You cannot have light without darkness, sound without silence, fullness without emptiness, brilliance without idiocy… why can this reliance be? It is not because these are two distinct items cursed to be at war with each other. It is because they are comparative terms, where one is the absence or warping of another. In the same way, evil is not a thing on its own. It is but the absence or warping of good.
 
Has there ever been a unique sin? Is not all sin the warping of what is good to get what we consider good in ways we consider easier or to get it in greater amounts? I believe John Piper said it best when he explained that no one sins out of obligation. There is no “I lie, not because I want to, but because it is my duty to do so!” NO! We may choose to do what is good because it is our purpose. We may choose to do what is right because we know we should. But we do evil for one purpose.
 
Because we have convinced ourselves that it will give us what we believe the Lord cannot!
 
So, if we know that evil is the absence or warping of good… choices often taken from the desire to experience good things easier than experiencing good things by doing good… then what is good? What decides what is good and what is evil? We may tell ourselves “It’s what the majority agree upon.” or “What does the least amount of damage.” But if it was built on something as frivolous and unreliable as the majority, could it really have lasted as long as it has? Could it really have done the exact same reset after being corrupted slowly the exact same ways so many times throughout history?? There have been so many complaints and heartbreaks these past few years tied to the choices of “the majority”. If what was good was truly decided by the choices of the majority then why would rebellions exist?
 
There have been people who say that God is the “greatest good.” that “He does the most things good of all of us.” but… if God were only a being that did what was good, how could He have the right to tell us what was good? If all the things in the world that were good, were good just because of a frivolous decision… would it really be “good”? Or would it just be actions we take in an attempt to earn the favour of the deity that placed these obligations on us.
 
No, God cannot tell us what is good simply because He does what is good. In order for God to tell us what is good and what is bad, He, himself, must be above good and evil. In fact, all things that chose to be “good” and all things that chose to be “evil” are things He created. Did He not create Satan as well as the angels? Did He not create Hitler as well as Mother Teresa? Did He not create Stalin as well as Martin Luther King Jr?
 
God did not create the good to fight against the evil. He created both, and gave them the CHOICE to do either good or evil. He gave us the choice because He loves us. He gave us the choice, because free will is potentially one of the greatest freedoms and responsibilities we have. He gave us the choice, because love and praise without free will is naught but lip service. He gave us the choice, because sentience without free will is torture.
 
And we have used that choice. Some have used it to do great good. Others have used it to do great evil… But this brings us back to the question. What does God creating both those who chose to do good and those who chose to do evil have to do with what is “good”?
 
Well you see… that it is only because God made everything, that He can say what is good and what is evil. And I don’t mean this in the sense of “God deserves the right because He made you and He has the right to do what He wants with you.” Though that may be true, the argument for good or evil is far more practical than that.
 
The inventor of the microwave can tell me that placing a meal inside the microwave to cook it is the right way to use a microwave, while placing a wet infant inside the microwave to dry it off is the wrong way. Why do they have the right to say this? Are they infringing upon my rights and free will? NO! I have the free will to fry as many infants as I can before either the moral trauma or the police catch up with me!
 
(note, this is only for a hyperbolic argument. I have not, nor will not be stupid enough to throw a living thing inside the microwave)
 
So why can the inventor of the microwave say what is good and what is wrong? Because they made it!!! They know how it works! Apparently better than me!
 
In the same way, God made EVERYTHING! Only it is even more intense than that, because He didn’t make us on some scientific theory, or some experiment He came up with to see what would happen. He made us knowing exactly how all things would work. But He made us all the same because we were precious to Him.
 
A very limited example might be a couple who decide to have a child. Unless this couple is either very proud or very naive, they are probably aware that a child will be very costly… very loud and obstinate in their toddler years… very rebellious and groan worthy in their teenage years. They must realize that this child will be influenced by the world around them as much as themselves… that there are very high chances this child will do things they would not approve of, hurt themselves by not taking their advice… they may even leave them in bitterness and never come back….. but still they have a child… and still they go out of their way to raise and protect it. Why?? Because they love that child.. and they want to see it succeed, even if it chooses not to.
 
If finite humans limited to their own small perspectives and minuscule wisdom can experience these thoughts, then how much more the God who created all things? How much more does He want to see us return even though we reject Him? How much more does He know what we will choose to do even if we choose to rebel against Him? How much more will He rejoice when we choose to come back to Him?
 
When God uses even those who do evil to accomplish His plans…. remember He is not using the enemy… He is not manipulating the other side, or working as a double agent. We were never made good or evil, but were given the choice to do either, and corrupted with the desire to do one to combat the responsibility to do the other. When God sees those who rebel against them, he doesn’t see an army rising up against Him…. He sees His children… running away from Him…. bitter and spiteful towards Him…. and He greatly desires for them to return to Him, and will give them every opportunity He can to allow them to do so. At the same time, He looks out for those who haven’t run away yet. Even if it means letting them experience their more rebellious siblings to realize where the path their headed down leads. Because He cares about us enough even to scare us back to Him by showing us the reality of where we’re headed in one giant leap instead of in adaptable baby steps.
 
But you still have free will, you still have the choice. So the question is… What will you do with it?

Looking Back at One Year

Welp, we’ve officially reached a year since I had my injury that started all of this. This year has not gone like I had expected. In fact if you had told me last May that 365 days from then I’d still be unemployed, unable to walk for long periods of time, and dealing with the further diagnoses’ of NASH and Fibromyalgia…. I might have given up right there.
 
This year has not gone like I expected… There have been many tears, sleepless nights, close calls, and hard discussions. There have been days where I’ve felt like I would give anything to make the pain stop even just for an hour…. there have been days I’ve wondered if I’ll ever have an income again. I’ve taken direct hits to my pride in places I never even knew I had pride.
 
Becoming a burden on those you care about, losing your freedom to do what you want, gaining weight no matter how hard you exercise or how much you change your diet, being open about mistakes in the past, being barely able to even do your own chores, not being able to help others do heavy lifting or shoveling of snow etc because you physically can’t keep up, wondering if you’ll ever be able to be self sufficient, wondering if you can ever be a breadwinner in the home, wondering if you’re even worth marrying or could even raise a family, getting judged as “just not trying hard enough”, the fear of going bankrupt, the fear of getting cancer, the fear of never being able to walk again, the list goes on…. but at the same time, it was all pride.
 
My situation may not have changed and my health my be in shambles, but even if my situation is still the same after a year, I am not. God has been working hard on me, and I don’t know why. But there are times in life when we aren’t meant to question. They’re times when we’re just meant to rise up to the challenges He presents.
 
I have become more organized, more studious. I appreciate the fleeting aspects of life, that I don’t have to stand alone. I used to believe that as long as I could have a house and a family and live a peaceful life, then that would be enough. Now I realize that I don’t want that, and can’t just settle for mediocre. I want to push myself to what only God can do through me.
 
I’ve realized that blame is pointless. It’s not about whose fault it is, but about what you will do moving forward. People can waste their lives obsessing over those who wronged them, those who couldn’t understand them, God for letting it happen…. but what do they gain from it? Can being angry at someone undo what was done? Did those who wrong you even do it JUST to wrong you? Chances are they were acting as best they could. And quite honestly it wasn’t other people who decided whether you rise or fall but God. And God does all things for your benefit, not your loss, so why blame him and miss the strength He is teaching you through it?
 
The truth is that all the things around you…. finances, relationships, health, comfort, future, world order, peace, chaos…. they are all nothing but waves crashing around you. Nothing but a distraction that doesn’t even matter. Keep your eyes on God. The rest doesn’t matter. Keep your eyes on God and He will strengthen you to endure waves that come at you, or may even block the ones you are not ready for.
 
How can I know this? Because it was not by my own strength that I have made it this far. I believed that all things would end come December, and yet here I am still standing. Things are still pretty bad, but this has been a peaceful walk compared to what it could have been. Compared to what it should have been. God is still working on me even though I fail Him time and time again.
 
Yes this road is getting to me. Yes there are days that I break down. But can I truly despair? No… because no matter how bad things get…. no matter how hopeless the future looks… I truly believe that God could undo all of this by tomorrow morning if He so wished…. but even if He doesn’t. Even if things continue to get worse (which I pray that they don’t) I have come to realize He will be with me to help me endure… and to protect me from that which I cannot.
 
There are a multitude of speakers out there who have been through rough times and are now on the other side. But I think it’s equally important to speak up when you’re in the midst of the storm as well. It is easy enough to say things like “I lost my job and it was the best thing that happened to me because now I have this successful company!” or “I was destitute in $80,000 worth of debt and now I’m a millionaire!” but… what can that give other than a brief moment of encouragement? It is good to hear that there is an end to the tunnel, but isn’t it better to hear what the person did to get through it? How they coped on those days when they could barely wake up? Or on those nights when they were so stressed that they couldn’t sleep? To realize that they were stressed and hurt…. and it’s alright to be human like that? That feeling too weak to move forward at times doesn’t mean that you never will?
 
And so if I can encourage anyone else standing in the midst of the storm, I’ll speak now. Because to ignore all that happened this past year would be to waste it.
 
My hope and prayer is that I become strong enough that I will rely on God just as desperately in a time of plenty and blessing, as I do in a time of pain and want. I’m not where I want to me, and there are days when I’m tired or scared…. but even still… God is in control. Whether I am blessed or cursed, does it really matter? Does my current situation limit what God can do through me? Does my current situation deem my worth? Even King Nebuchadnezzar was raised to a seat of power by God, and then later had it taken away by God. Even though he believed it was his own doing.
 
So no. While I do want to live without pain, or have a lot of the stresses crushing in on me to disappear…. I’ve come to realize it is not my ability that will determine which way life will go…. God will bring me out of this if He so wishes, or provide for me to endure if He decides for me to stay.
 
God never asked for us to provide results, only to do the best we can with what we are given and to keep our eyes on Him throughout it all. and quite honestly, that is labour enough! So, as we pass the one year mark, no I am not where I want to be… but I am where God has placed me which means I am where I am meant to be.
 
Amen.

The Wolf of Class 1D — Dimensional Theory

It has been about 1/4 a year since I published my second novel The Wolf of Class 1D and I have reached the nerve-wracking, yet exciting time of hearing feedback from those who have read it. The most common feedback I hear is questions about my use of the fourth dimension. Where did I come up with the idea? How does it work? How extensive is it?

Seeing as I was fairly limited in how detailed my explanation could be within the book (because even with me cutting out most of it, my base explanation still ended up being the longest chapter!) I decided to write a post to better explain the full extent of my dimensional theory for those fellow lore lovers out there who want to get a thorough explanation of how the world of The Wolf of Class 1D works!

Some Base Disclaimers:

  1. I am a Christian. Anyone who knows me or follows this blog should be very aware of that. Because of this, Dimensional Theory is very much inspired by my faith and beliefs. Asking me to come up with a scientific/logical theory without God would be like asking me to write a fictional novel without my imagination. I just can’t do it!
  2. Dimensional Theory; while interesting and arguably very applicable, is still just a theory. It was a concept I came up with trying to explain the things I saw in this world which I couldn’t explain, and then I expanded upon and made more fantastical to become the plot point of The Wolf of Class 1D. While I believe the theory holds a lot of merit, and can help people understand this world better; it is ONLY a theory. There is no research or scientific evidence to back it up. I would argue that due to the very nature of the theory it may be impossible to prove or disprove, but it was just a potential conclusion formed from several decades worth of observations and should be taken as such.

With those two disclaimers out of the way; Let’s begin!

What Are Dimensions?

Dimensional Theory can be a daunting theory at first because it talks about things “Beyond our existence”. If it were a concept easy to wrap your head around, quantum physics would most likely be considered a primary course as opposed to PHD worthy.

That being said; I strongly believe that theories like these are more like a magic trick than a laborious task. While first attempting to wrap your head around the concept seems impossible, once you learn the trick behind the concept, it becomes fairly simple. Even moreso the more you use it!

A Basic Breakdown:

In The Wolf of Class 1D I described the concept of dimensions something like this:

Let’s say you had two worlds. One world is two-dimensional, the other is three-dimensional. If you were to take a cube (or any object) from the three-dimensional world, and place it on top of the two-dimensional world, the two dimensional world would clearly see and interact with the cube, however they could not see ALL of the cube. They would just see a square. A shadow of what the whole item may be.

In the same way with all dimensions; each dimension is connected to and influenced by the dimension above it, yet cannot fully see all there is to that dimension as it is beyond it. There are times it may see more or less of that dimension, or even a warped version of it based on how the two interact (imagine a cube on it’s edge or corner vs a cube on it’s face) but at the same time, the two are interconnected and not separate.

Now if you’re still following with me; That’s great! The rest of this shouldn’t be too much of a jump! If you’re a bit confused… Keep hanging on; it might make sense as you see it in play.

The First Dimension — Information:

In math; the first dimension would be a dot or a line (depending on who your math teacher was… personally I agree more with the line) There is only one way it goes. Often described as left or right, there is no up and down.

In the same way, in Dimensional Theory, the first dimension is information. Just pure data. While this may be counter cultural to our fact-based culture; if you study statistics it makes a lot more sense.

Data on its own is pretty useless. It can be misinterpreted. It overlooks a lot of inexplicable things. In writing and drama you learn that text makes up about 10% of communication. Context (what led up to this) makes up about 27% and the rest… is subtext (What isn’t said but is felt). It is the same reason why one can so easily find loopholes for laws, but morals are a touch more durable.

For these reasons, information achieves the position as the lowest of all dimensions. But that doesn’t make it useless! No! Information is all around us. It’s a part of everything. Information is essential! But on it’s own it is not enough.

The Second Dimension — Imagination:

If the first dimension is information, the second dimension would have to be imagination. And no… I am not saying this as the bias of a speculative fiction writer, though indeed, imagination is a huge part of my life. I say this because imagination is not limited to what information is found. In fact, often times, imagination can lead to the discovery of new information. Just as a lot of information can inspire a new bent on imagination. *cough cough* says the guy who wrote a book inspired by counselling and quantum physics

That being said, imagination is limited to the second dimension as… in all honesty, reality has stuff that imagination can’t come close to. While your imagination can often seem more extreme than reality or even with less conflicts and issues… this imperfect reality still seems to blow you away in ways you never though possible!

You can imagine all you want about standing at the edge of a giant cliff; hundreds of thousands of feet in the air…. but it won’t come close to the awe of standing at the edge of the Grand Canyon, or the precipice of Mount Everest. You can imagine the perfect match for you and fantasize the wildest things that aren’t even humanly possible with them… but it won’t impact your heart to the extent of that imperfect real world love of yours trying to impress you.

In fact; the most impactful works of fiction are often the ones that draw from things we have really experienced. To remind us of them instead of forcing us to imagine something we cannot comprehend.

The Third Dimension — Physical Space:

Next we come to the third dimension; the physical world. These are the things we can see, touch, hear, taste, smell. The things our five senses pick up on. Our physical bodies are tied to this world. Matter is tied to this world. This world is impacted by energy. Physics exist as we know it. Majority of science is made from observations which have been turned into information from this third dimension. Majority of theories and fiction are inspired by the information gathered from this world.

If my third dimension body were to punch your third dimension body would you not feel pain? If my third dimension body were to massage or heal your third dimension body, would you not feel comfort? Our third dimensional bodies secrete chemicals which affect how we feel. How distracted we will be. All the information gathered from our five senses take place here. All our physical limitations also take place here. This is the third dimension. The place all should be most familiar with. There is really not much more to say than that.

The Difficulty Spike:

Finally we reach the point where it starts to get complicated. When I was younger I came up with a theory I called “Laws of Reality” inspired by the “Deeper Magic” talked about in C.S. Lewis’ The Lion, The Witch, and The Wardrobe. This theory were simply a list of rules that had nothing to do with what SHOULD be or what COULD be…. they were simply laws that HAD to be for anything to make sense. These rules included things such as;

  • You cannot have light without darkness, for darkness is simply the absence of light.
  • You cannot have good without evil as evil is simply the absence or warping of good
  • A choice without consequences is meaningless
  • Sentience without free will is a torturous existence
  • There must be absolute truth because even saying “There is NO absolute truth” would be an absolute truth

And of course, most relevant to this theory:

  • Something cannot fully understand or create something equal to or greater than itself.

This is why we struggle to understand the human brain. This is why who we are is such a philosophical question. This is why purpose and theology seem so abstract. This is why AI, though faster, is still so incredibly far from human reasoning. And most importantly, this is why you shouldn’t feel bad if the dimensions to come don’t make perfect sense… they aren’t supposed to. They are supposed to be beyond us.

The Fourth Dimension — Us:

In The Wolf of Class 1D, the fourth dimension was described as the place where our personalities and emotions truly were. Separate from, yet tied to our physical bodies. This was why you can have such an impact on someone’s thoughts and emotions without even physically making contact with them, such as in a text, a memory, or even this blog post.

“Sticks and Stones may break my bones but Words Will Never Hurt Me!”

We all know this isn’t true… the fourth dimension is why. Call it your spirit, your soul, your identity, whatever you want… but there is something in humans that goes beyond body and mind…. as most people seem to (even if begrudgingly) agree to.

While maybe not as fantastical as The Wolf of Class 1D where the fourth dimensional selves of people gave them animal ears, amazing powers, or even turned them into giant monsters… there was a point I wanted to get across with the exaggerations in the story.

First: Though who we are at our core remains; our fourth dimensional selves do change!

As we grow in confidence. As we understand who we are and what we can do. As the events which take place in our lives impact us deeply. As we choose to hold onto or let go of events which happen to us… our fourth dimensional self changes. We either grow or shrink. We either become empowering or destructive. But we WILL change.

Second: How you react to events in your life IS important!

Life is tough… Life is cruel… Life can often teach us the furthest extents of despair… but even still, we need to keep moving. I say this not just so you will be less of a burden, but also for your own sake!

When events negatively impact us… we are given three choices.

First we can hold onto it. Let it fester and boil within us. Refuse to let go. We’ll never forgive and we’ll never forget! This then turns that event into a trigger… a stumbling block. It grows within us, filling us with fear, pride, rage, or more…. We begin to lose sight of the things around us, and it slowly begins to warp us as we do things we never intended to do. We become someone we never intended to be.

Second option is to bury it. Ignore it. Attempt to pretend it never happened. Again… this is a dangerous choice. Because it did happen. You can’t change the past by ignoring it. It did happen, and no matter how much you ignore it that pain will still be there. And as more pains come and you bury them, it will get tighter and tighter in there. You’ll become ashamed of your life… of who you are… you’ll expend so much energy attempting to keep all the hurts in your life hidden and you’ll learn nothing from them… until one day… finally… something small will come… something you never even thought to guard against…. it will come in under your radar, and it will hit you hard. It will hit you so that all the hurts you kept buried will come flying out at whoever hurt you… and then you will be the one who caused pain. And believe me, you don’t want that.

Third option finally is to accept it. Accept that the pain hurt. Accept that it was wrong. Cry your eyes out. Admit you can barely handle it. There is no shame in feeling weak. Anyone who tells you that is most likely trying too hard to hide their own weakness. Accept, mourn, and then move forward. Don’t try to pretend that what happened never happened… it did. Use it. Learn from it. Let it turn you into someone more sympathetic. Someone who can better help those around you. Someone who can create a place of comfort and healing in this world.

You will never save this world by destroying the things in it. You will only save it by building in it!

Third: There are no monsters and saints. We are all human.

I watch the news after a tragedy, and I hear words people use. “They were a monster.” “They weren’t even human.” “Such a demon.”

We post the most hideous photos we can find about them and treat them as something other than human…. but all we are really doing is covering up what we don’t want to accept.

Anyone could do that…

As mentioned in The Wolf of Class 1D, If you don’t deal with the issues in your life. If you hold onto hurts, lusts, negative things in general… even if you do so for the best of reasons such as justice… you will find yourself beginning to change.

Chances are you won’t notice the change as it is slow and as was stated in the book, “There is no one harder to clearly see than yourself.” But you will change… and slowly turn into what you never wanted to be.

The first victim of a monster is always the monster…. I truly believe this. People don’t go out into this world in an attempt to be evil. That level of ludicrousy is limited to the black mustached villains of children’s shows. Everyone lives their lives doing what is justifiable in their own eyes. Doing something horrendous to someone is as easy as telling yourself “They aren’t like me… They aren’t even human! They gave up/never had that right!”

Which leads us back to how we view those who do wrong… or those we disagree with in general… and why our hatred of them can often turn us into what we hate the most.

We are ALL just human. ANYONE can become a monster.

While this thought is terrifying in itself… realize the reverse is also true.

We are ALL just human. NO ONE is beyond redemption.

The consequences of your actions will remain. As mentioned earlier. You will have to live with those consequences for the rest of your life. But YOU are still redeemable. As I said at the first point. Though our fourth dimensional selves change, the core of who we are still remains the same. It may get buried. It may get tortured. It may get bound, beaten, or bruised. But the core of who you are… your identity… it’s still there. It’s why you can see someone years later to have discovered they became someone completely different from who you ever thought they would be…. but they are still them… you still recognize them.

Shed off the parts of yourself you shouldn’t be. Build up the parts that you should!

 

I went long on the fourth dimension; partially because it is what The Wolf of Class 1D is based on, but also because I believe it is an important concept to consider.

“Who Are We?” This question may sound silly and childish to ask up front… but how many of our world issues spring from this?

  • What is my identity?
  • Are our personalities decided by our chemical breakdown? Our choices? Something else?
  • When is a human a human?
  • Does race matter?
  • Does beliefs raise or lower your value?
  • What about the mentally disabled?
  • What makes someone “human”?

We ask these questions daily… our news stations are saturated with them. Thousands of causes are started about them. The question people want to know is…. “What am I?”

The Fifth Dimension — Angels and Demons:

The fifth and sixth dimensions are two I often speculate on the order of. That being said, I place them in the fifth dimension due to a few things I noticed in the bible.

A lot of people describe “a god” as simply a being of immense power… This is a definition I choose to disagree with. If a god was simply a being of more power than humans could have or comprehend; there would be many gods… in fact, some humans would probably be considered gods in their own right.

That being said, while I disagree that beings of more power are all it takes to be gods…. I do believe there are beings of more power than humans out there. The bible speaks a lot about them.

  • That God created angels
  • That some angels rebelled and became demons
  • That angels were often used as messengers of God
  • That there is a spiritual war of angels and demons happening at all times around us even though we (usually) cannot see it
  • That when humans met angels, they fell down in awe and worship because they were greater than they could comprehend (though the angels in turn desperately begged them not to worship them when they were so low and unworthy of prayer)
  • That demons would offer power, miraculous signs and wonders, things that no human could do, but in turn the human would begin to lose themselves to the demons
  • That there is a deep attraction in humans to both angels and demons which make them dangerous to think too much about or pay too much attention to lest we end up worshiping them and not the God who made them.

I believe the best way I heard to describe it was that “God wants a relationship with you because God loves you. The Devil wants a relationship with you… because God loves you…” in other words. The Devil and demons don’t care one way or the other about you… He just wants to destroy what is precious to God.

So that is why I place Angels and Demons above humans… but why do I place them below the next dimension? *Spoilers* the next dimension is time!

The Sixth Dimension — Time:

Current quantum physics places the physical realm and time within the same plane. (AKA the fabric of spacetime) I stretch them apart in order to fit our personalities and Angels and Demons between the two for two reasons.

  1. Neither who we are, nor angels and demons seem to be tied nor fully perceivable by our third dimension senses. While there are senses which do seem capable of noticing these dimensions. Empathy and intuition for the 4th dimension. Faith and spiritual awareness for the 5th) There is still so much which seems completely undetectable in the third dimension save for the impact they have on it.
  2. While both who we are and angels and demons seem to be in a realm above the third dimension; they both seem to be (temporarily) bound to the realm of time. The Bible does talk about after the end of the physical world, the demons will be cast into the pit for all eternity, and the souls of those who ask to be saved will spend eternity in glory… While this suggests that both are capable of being outside of time… it also suggests that we WILL get there (hinting we are currently bound to time)….

This being said…. Time is two dimensions above us! It is hard to fully understand!

A lot of people spend most of their lives arguing about predestination, fate, free will, and more… but the best way I can describe how I view time is like this:

The Bible states that God is “OUTSIDE” of time, and quantum physics as well suggest that time has form, which would mean there would need to be an outside to it. But what would “Outside” of time look like?

Imagine if you were looking at a comic strip, or an old fashioned film reel. You are OUTSIDE the realm of time for that comic. You can see what is coming. In the case of reality (or the artist) you can add things to the story to make things easier when the time comes that the event will happen. You see the ending, but the characters are still the ones who decide what will be done.

This is abstract… very abstract I know, yet it’s a kind of joke most of us have grown up on. Such as the Looney Toons episodes where the artist would interact with the characters. Take some time to think about it. I’m not saying this IS the way, for how could I possibly even fully understand it??? But it’s a method I’ve yet to prove wrong… and I think it would explain a lot. When you’re ready it’s time to move onto the next dimension.

The Seventh Dimension — Good and Evil:

“Angels are good and Demons are bad!” ….Okay… but why?

“Charity is good, and murder is bad!” …..Ya… but again why?

“I feel like this is good, and I feel like this is bad!” ….Still… why?

Why are some things good and some things bad? Because we feel like they’re good or bad? But what intuitively is in there to tell us that this is good and this is bad? Because society tells us this is good and this is bad? Society has corrupted itself, fallen down, then returned to old values countless times in the last 7000 years. Why does the cycle repeat? Why do we keep returning to the same values? Why do we keep falling for the same pitfalls?

It’s not about what we feel, because let’s admit it. Being bad can feel really good! It’s not about society, because society changes based on the values we strive for (for better or for worse). It’s not about religion, because someone still had to write that religion, and if everyone disagreed with it it wouldn’t have stood the test of time. It’s not about what’s efficient, because let’s admit it. There are many inhumane things which are VERY efficient!

Good and evil just… are. They’re concepts we seem to constantly return to. They’re concepts we don’t even need to fully be taught about. A child will instinctively know to hide what they did, before even being told it was wrong. They may not understand why, but they know they can’t tell anyone about it.

Now of course there are things that we have put into place. Things in the first dimension of information. Rules, laws, taboos… I’m not talking about those however. I’m talking about the things that remain. The things that still keep coming back. Because as you read history you realize, we really haven’t done anything new. The values we held were held long before. The radical causes we fight for have been fought for before. Technology may change, languages may change, cultures may change… yet the core argument of good and evil remains the same. Why?

The ???Eighth??? Dimension — God:

I put “Eighth” surrounded in question marks as the number here does not matter. If I were to add more dimensions later on, this number would change it. What it really is, is the top dimension.

I mentioned earlier that I did not believe a god was simply a being of great power. To me a god is simply this.

God is what determines what is right and what is wrong.

Now you may notice from this example that I underlined “is”. I am not talking about “God is what you use to determine what YOU believe to be right or what is wrong.” Though that WOULD be what YOU consider to be your God.

There are many things we place as the god of our lives. Science, celebrities, our own intuition, the government, luck, civil rights, tumblr…. It does not matter what you say your religion is or is not…. whatever you feel is your purpose in life is your belief. Whatever decides what is good and what is evil in your life is your god.

But that being said; I had just mentioned in the seventh dimension that what IS good and evil is completely separate from our beliefs. We may cannot change reality by wishing it to be so. We can not keep things from happening by ignoring them. What is, is. If God is the one who determines what is right and what wrong; who could create such rules?

A power-hungry mad deity who demands people worship Him or else He will smite them? No wait… that can’t be it. Because those would be rules and laws… not what is right and wrong in itself.

What is right and what is wrong go beyond rules and punishments. Rules and punishments are made to keep us doing right and prevent us from doing wrong. A rule is a warning sign, a punishment is a fine. But should you do what is wrong you will face more than a fine. You will face the consequences of your actions in how they affect everything around you!

So who can determine such things? Who can determine how something is supposed to run in order to avoid it from breaking or causing damage? Who can intuitively know what the optimal conditions are? And how to get you back to them when you’ve run so far away?

The only one who could know a creation that well through and through, is the creator. God. The one above all things.

 

Thank You For Listening!

I know this spiel was long, abstract, and possibly confusing at times; but I hope I explained it in a way that made you consider what I was saying. It is not my place in life to tell you to think one way or the other; and as I said at the beginning, this is only a theory. I have no proof or research to show that it is true. But if I caused you to think… to consider things you never would have otherwise and honestly ponder the world as you viewed it… I would consider this post a success.

 

If you found this concept interesting, and would like to read a fantastical adventure with such concepts visualized; I would like to invite you to read my latest book, The Wolf of Class 1D. It is available in E-Book and Paperback as well as available on Amazon, Nook, Ibooks, and several other places around the world!

It was a very deep book for me to write, and I would like for it to one day help encourage others just like it did for me.

Again, thank you for listening to my ramble and rant. I hope it was good for you. I hope you have an amazing day and know you are important. Your choices matter, and you have impact. Keep being the amazing person you are!

M.D. Tolman ~Mac~

Morning Miracles

Morning miracles are… hard to process but… wow…
 
I was doing my morning prayer while in bed this morning, same as I have for the last 9 months, been praying very hard about faith… and if I was right in trusting the Lord for what stands against me, or if others were right that “You can pray for courage to go through this, but you won’t be saved till you put your nose to the grindstone and go down the long road of trying to recover yourself.” and how my heart broke to think of it because the concept seemed to go against anything I had read in the Bible or had felt so far… I wanted God to tell me, not the people around me, because I hear so many voices saying so many things and it’s hard to know who to believe.
 
It was at that point that I felt a small voice inside me say “If you want to see what I can do then get up and walk.”
 
I kind of chuckled inside my head thinking “ya. there’s desperation kicking in. I’m not about to be disappointed like that again…” But the voice persisted.
 
“How do you expect to see a miracle if you lack the faith to act on it?” it asked.
 
So begrudgingly, I got out of bed, and…. my knee and ankle didn’t pop…. I didn’t walk with a limp… I could barely believe it… but it had to just be an early morning thing… so I walked around the upstairs and… and still didn’t pop…. but no… I had to be going crazy….
 
I went to the exercise bike… up until now my record had been 5:00 and even then I was going slowly and REALLY pushing myself for the last minute, and could barely walk afterwards….. I just peddled HARD for 5:30… and I could have gone for longer easily… My muscles are sore but my ankle and knee didn’t cease up once…
 
Honestly I can hardly even compute this right now… But at the same time I felt like I had to say it out loud… I keep swinging my leg around while writing this expecting it to cease up and pop, but nothing happens…. even if it does lock up later on today, this is the first time in 9 months I’ve been able to walk without pain… all I can say is it honestly is a miracle…
 
There is still so much that stands in my way… still Fibro and NASH and unemployment and financial stresses… honestly these last 9 months have been some of the hardest I’ve gone under, but… God does miracles…. I don’t know what lies ahead.. I honestly don’t even know what will happen in the next hour or so, but…. God does miracles…. Amen