Cheap Tricks...

Driving down the freeway I saw a car dealership sign that looked like it was on the fritz. The huge flashing, multi-bulbed sign was blinking with such scattered inconsistency that it gave off the appearance of being broken. But, since I was stuck in traffic and was able to spend an abnormal amount of time watching it, I discovered there actually was a pattern. It would flash and skip and blink with each announcement it was trying to make, to us, the drivers in traffic.

We would fall for it.

We found ourselves looking away from the slow moving cars in front of us towards the seemingly glitchy lights just in time for its message to appear clearly, pausing long enough for us to read.

New!

Glitch, blink, flash

Cheap!

Flash, glitch, glitch

Deal!

I thought about how clever and annoying this ploy was. Someone knew that the appearance of the sign seeming broken would catch our attention and draw our eyes away from the normal.

We see this happen in nature also.

Quickly take a mental scan of this mornings Facebook page and think about that one person who is always complaining and flashing desperate attention seeking status updates.

Emotionally shouting "Help! Someone notice me! Feel sorry for me! Give me some attention!"

Flash, glitch, glitch

I have a few of these people in my life who have always done this. I have often wondered what it is that makes them like this. What makes them so desperate that they would resort to such a cheap cry for attention?

Of course I then began to think of myself. Just last night I was talking to someone about seemingly unintentional manipulations to get affirmation/attention/notice from others and the gross feeling I feel when I receive it. Ugh! I think. Gross. That was not what I wanted. A contrived affirmation in response to emotional manipulation.

The thought gives me shivers and yet as an insecure human I know that I've found myself resorting to it.

So why? Why do we use a scam to attract attention? How can we avoid it?

The bible says in Romans 8:15-16

For [the Spirit which] you have now received [is] not a spirit of slavery to put you once more in bondage to fear, but you have received the Spirit of adoption [the Spirit producing sonship] in [the bliss of] which we cry, Abba (Father)! Father! The Spirit Himself [thus] testifies together with our own spirit, [assuring us] that we are children of God."

I suppose, if I am to believe Paul in these verses, that freedom from the bondage of fear/self-pity/insecurity/etc., the things that drive us to a flashy scam of a life, lies in the knowledge of whose children we are.

This is an amazing truth that I've often found myself reflecting on, BUT, the thing that jumped out at me, while reading these verses this time, is the last bit. The bit that says "The Spirit Himself testifies together with our own spirit..."

“ ‘The Spirit itself beareth witness with our spirit.’ Our own spirit tells us we are God’s children, but the voice with which it speaks is, as we know, prompted and inspired by the divine Spirit itself.”-James Denney

Our spirit knows who we are.

AND

It is in agreement with the Holy Spirit's testifying that we are children of God.

The definition of spirit is: The principle of conscious life; the vital principle in humans, animating the body or mediating between the body and soul.

Our spirit which is the principle of our conscious life knows. And then beyond that knowledge and even greater than that knowledge is the fact that those of us who profess belief in Jesus as our Savior also have the indwelling of the Holy Spirit who is constantly testifying that we are children of God.

If we heard this testifying or if we listened to the cry of our own spirits in tandem with the Holy spirit then why would we be living glitchy, fake, attention grabbing lives?

That flashy sign reminded me that I need to remember who I am.

I need to be able to rest peacefully and un-selfconciously in that knowledge and then let the impact of that knowledge be reflected back out on my face, smile, eyes, words, body language, actions, Facebook status...I need to have a clear sign with a clear message NOT using cheap tricks or gimmicks but truth and honesty.

I am a child of God.

I am a child of God.

I am a child of God.

Shhhh...

Can you hear your heart beating and your spirit breathing that song?

It is.


Posted on November 28, 2011 and filed under Anything and Everything.