Deceptive Brain Messages + Your Purpose - Strong As Hec

Deceptive Brain Messages + Your Purpose

"Believe in something, even if it means sacrificing everything." Do you remember this marketing message back in 2018?

It went viral.

I'd like to give you another perspective on this. Today after my morning run, I hit the road for Mass to celebrate the 24th Sunday in ordinary time.

A call to ADVENTure

Advent: The beginning of the liturgical calendar. It's a call to ADVENTure guiding us through the beginning or our journey... preparing us for the nativity of Christ.

There's a stage in every man's life where he's called to a journey (see stage 2 of the Hero's Journey) where he discovers his purpose. Whatever journey it is. It's unique to you based on what God has planned for you.

We're called to leave our ordinary world (i.e., the "ordinary time" of the liturgical calendar) and to accept our call to adventure. And that's what I wanna share with ya today.

Warning: I'm going to use a religious example to get my point across. But the general message is important for you if.

... you're feeling lost in today's time of uncertainty.

The Hero's Journey

Of the 3 readings, it's the Gospel I'd like to share my comments on and what I feel they mean for my life (and maybe yours).

Mark 8: 27-35

Jesus is talking to his disciples and he asks them, "who do you say that I am?" They begin giving Him answers.

“John the Baptist, others Elijah, still others one of the prophets.”

And he asked them, “But who do you say that I am?”

Peter said to him in reply, “You are the Christ.”  Then he warned them not to tell anyone about him.

It's what happened next which caught my attention.

Jesus began to teach them about how He is to suffer, be rejected by the elders, chief priests, and scribes. And eventually be killed and would be raise from the dead.

Stay with me because what follows is important and could change the course of your life, instill hope, and help you better serve those around you.

Jesus rebukes Peter...

Peter steps up, pulls Jesus to the side to share how he disapproves of what is to happen to Him. But Jesus checks Peter.

He faces his disciples rebuking Peter by saying, "get behind me satan. You're thinking not as God does, but as human beings do."

Right after this, Jesus calls the crowd and tells them, "Whoever wishes to come after me must deny himself,
take up his cross, and follow me. For whoever wishes to save his life will lose it, but whoever loses his life for my sake and that of the gospel will save it."

WOW!

This hit me hard. It was an "ah-ha" moment for me.

I'll explain.

Believe in something, even if it means sacrificing everything...

Christ knew and was 100% willing to sacrifice everything for me (and for you). He's also calling me to take up and embrace my cross with a kiss and follow Him. To be unstained by the world.

And by "unstained" I'm talking about succumbing to the pleasures of the world. But rather, to not think as the world thinks. But to elevate my thinking.

In the 33rd verse of the 8th chapter of Mark, Peter attempts to keep Jesus from living His purpose. Which is why Jesus calls him out.

The same thing happens to you and I. The evil one is trying to keep you from your purpose in this life.

Your life's purpose on two levels...

On one level, our purpose is to Love God with all our mind, all our soul, and all our might.

And on another level.

We are to Glorify God through our lives by living our purpose and serving others through the talents God has graced us with.

Today it's easy to be distracted with what's going on in the world. Viruses, tyrannical mandates, the list is long. All this does is feed your brain with deceptive messages.

Deceptive Brain Messages

Deceptive brain messages
(thoughts, urges, desires)

Uncomfortable physical or emotional sensations
(including cravings)

Habitual unhealthy responses

Deceptive brain messages
(thoughts, urges, desires)

Uncomfortable physical or emotional sensations
(including cravings)

Habitual unhealthy responses

(You can read more about deceptive brain messages here)

After your brain receives this message it triggers physical/emotional sensations and by consequence... unhealthy actions/patterns. It's these unhealthy actions (or inactions) which keep you from your purpose.

Keeping you from putting your art into the world.

Your labor of love which could change lives for the better. Something you believe in so deeply, you're willing to sacrifice everything to give birth to your vision (Like Christ did for His passion).

You see.

As I mentioned above. Peter (our first pope) tried to keep Jesus from His purpose for "His own good" (sound familiar?). But Jesus being God in the flesh knew better. Which is why he told Peter, "get behind me satan."

He tried to keep Jesus from descending into his katabasis (see steps 6, 7, and 8 of the Hero's Journey). A descent (read: journey) we are all called to as men. A descent into the trials and challenges of our life. A call to carry our cross, to deny ourselves, and not think as the world thinks.

And through this journey and the challenges we encounter along the way.

... we discover our purpose.

And we can either enter into katabasis voluntarily or be forced into our descent through catastrophe (I'll expand more about katabasis later).

Peter possessed by satan??

Does this mean Peter was possessed by satan?

No, certainly not.

But satan will influence and tempt people through deceptive brain messages. And based on the content of the message, we have a physical or emotional sensation followed by either a healthy or unhealthy response.

Satan will tempt the closest people to you (even your loved ones) to keep you from your purpose. You can identify them by comments like.

"Do you need to workout again?"

"You work too much, you should take it easy."

"I don't see why you go to church, nothing but hypocrites there."

"It's okay, have some pizza, you've worked hard and deserve a break."

You get my point.

These are deceptive messages keeping you from your purpose. You need to recognize them when as they enter your brain so you can veto them.

Because the truth is.

... there are only two things in this world you can control. Your effort and your attitude.

While you can't control the information entering your brain. You can CHOOSE how you'll respond to them.

Will you choose negative thoughts, triggering negative emotional sensations... and as a result leading you to unhealthy actions and patterns?

Only you can answer that question.

Appreciate your attention and reading this post.

hec g.

P.S. You have complete control over your destiny. Not the President, nor the Pope, NO ONE.

YOU.

God has given YOU a set of skills.

A gift.

A gift so potent it will change the world and the lives of those around you (who are depending on you). But it's up to you on how you respond to your deceptive brain messages.

I'll leave you with one question man.

If you die today.

What gifts.

Whats talents would die with you?

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