Some people got hold of news that I made it to the dean’s list. It’s a happy occasion for me. Yet at the same time on reaching this milestone, the expectation was to do equally well, if not better this semester. Needless to say when my first assignment didn’t make the cut, I was naturally disappointed. Talk about unrealistic expectations! I was inundated with a bunch of other issues as well (including the loss of a few hundred dollars) and was pressured to contain the displeasure against my circumstances. Then I was again pressured to think positive.
I’ve nothing against being positive. The reason I use the word “pressured” is because sometimes thinking positive is just our subconscious reaction to the state of our being negative, and this behaviour is conditioned by our culture or even naturally inherent in our human nature. Recently an article on BBC talked about how the human mind naturally suppresses bad thoughts. That doesn’t sound bad, does it?
The issue I have is with the unconscious suppression of our thoughts. I think this is an epidemic which cannot be cured by simply thinking positive. The Bible speaks of man “who by their unrighteousness suppress the truth” (Romans 2:18). What do we usually suppress? It is usually frightening, phobic thoughts. It is usually the truth which is exchanged for something comforting. That is why when people invent idols to worship, they don’t make holy ones but ones which imperfect, profane and finite. That is why when people hear of the infinite, all-mighty, sovereign God of the Bible, they suppress the viability of the existence of such a personal being, because deep down in their hearts they do not want to relinquish the freedom and control of their destiny. And its frightening to know that this nature is inherent in myself.
The secular man has no way out of his dilemma. He is posed with the conundrum of accepting the truth without hope of any possibility of overcoming the negative thoughts. What is suppressed will eventually come back to haunt him. We give all sorts of excuse to justify ourselves, but eventually God is proved right when He speaks and prevail when he judges (Romans 3:4).
Let me then cast my anxieties on Him who comforts me and lifts up my burdens; who by His finished work grants me a seat in the heavenly places; who by the grace bestowed upon me charges me to finish the race; who takes care of the poor and the weak; who have mercy on those who repent; who leads us by still waters; who is the Alpha and the Omega, the provider of everything good and beyond.