The Abnormality of Normality Part 2


Audio: mp3

What is normal? It’s manufacturer settings. That’s what we look at. We are in a bond service of Sabbath and we are going to continue what we didn’t conclude and we learned that all disease comes from sin because the wages of sin is death and disease is just the working of death. From the day Adam and Eve ate of that tree, there was this breaking down, the process of dying started at that point. Through sin, the whole human organism has been deranged and we find ourselves falling into sin so easily because of our makeup and we have since the creation, we have not been normal. I read that 75% of mental illnesses occur in people under 25 years old. It just goes to show that in our day, things are only getting worse when it comes to mental illness and we want to understand how it is that we can have health.

The gospel, the purpose of Jesus Christ is salvation for people. Salvation is making some one whole. That is mind, soul, spirit and body; the whole look. The crowing act is when our bodies have changed at the coming of Jesus Christ.

2 Timothy 1:7 For God hath not given us the spirit of fear; but of power, and of love, and of a sound mind.

The first place that God proposes to restore man back to the original settings, back to being normal is right in our mind. When our minds are right, He can change our bodies and in fact when our minds are right, our body will perform a lot better even in our current situation. We learned to understand that 90% of diseases come, have their foundation from the brain.

Proverbs 14:30 A sound heart is the life of the flesh: but envy the rottenness of the bones.

As a man thinks in his heart, so is he. Where do you think? In our brain. When the Bible uses the term heart, it is talking of our brain. A sound heart is the life of the flesh. We want to know how can we get mental health. How can we do it? Can you be healthy by eating bad food? In John 6, we read that Jesus made a statement which in His day was misunderstood and this statement is speaking of what we eat mentally.

John 6:54 Whoso eateth my flesh, and drinketh my blood, hath eternal life; and I will raise him up at the last day.

If our mind uses Him, His body, His blood, His life, who He is a person, if our mind digests that, then when the last day comes, when Jesus comes, who will be raised?

John 6:55 For my flesh is meat indeed, and my blood is drink indeed. He that eateth my flesh, and drinketh my blood, dwelleth in me, and I in him. As the living Father hath sent me, and I live by the Father: so he that eateth me, even he shall live by me.

John 6:63 It is the spirit that quickeneth; the flesh profiteth nothing: the words that I speak unto you, they are spirit, and they are life.

He is not talking about the literal flesh. He is saying, what I am saying to you is spirit and life. The Holy Spirit is to take of me and to show it to you in your mind and as you do that and it becomes part of your mental fabric, you will have salvation.

Pure healthful reading will be to the mind what healthful food is to the body. You will thus become stronger to resist temptation, to form right habits, and to act upon right principles. {SD 178.6}

This is equating reading to eating. But if you just eat one meal, is that enough to make you healthy. You have a few week picks and that’s it, I’m good now, I don’t have to eat ever again. Sometimes we think that I have a spiritual start and I start to read God’s Word and I think nothing will just happen so that’s it. We only have one real go at reading God’s Word and we think that should magically change us. How many times do you eat a day? Two, three times a day? That keeps us going. You are what you eat. We must regularly partake God’s Word. Have an inner mind whether we literally have the book in front of us at the time or whether we are chewing over the words that we have learned before and the truths that have come through, God’s Word in other times that we go over and meditate upon them and eat them. But what we read, what we look upon, what we mentally digest will determine our mental health.

Isaiah 55:1-2 Ho, every one that thirsteth, come ye to the waters, and he that hath no money; come ye, buy, and eat; yea, come, buy wine and milk without money and without price. Wherefore do ye spend money for that which is not bread? and your labour for that which satisfieth not? hearken diligently unto me, and eat ye that which is good, and let your soul delight itself in fatness.

Eat that which is good and you will be healthy. Does that make sense? Eat healthy food and you will be healthy. It’s not that hard, is it? Very simple. Now why is there so much mental illness today? Why is it that there is so much mental frailty today? Is it perhaps that we are eating bad food? Perhaps. Not perhaps, yes it is.

If as newborn babes you desire the sincere milk of the word, that you may grow thereby, you will have no appetite to partake of a dish of evil speaking, but all such food will be at once rejected, because those who have tasted that the Lord is gracious cannot partake of the dish of nonsense, and folly, and backbiting. They will say decidedly, “Take this dish away. I do not want to eat such food. It is not the bread from heaven. It is eating and drinking the very spirit of the devil; for it is his business to be an accuser of the brethren.” {FE 457.3}

As newborn babes, as Christians who want to grow up in Christ, we must have the sincere milk of the Word so we can actually grow. But if we take the dish of nonsense and of folly and of backbiting and of gossip, then we are just going to get sick.

It is best for every soul to closely investigate what mental food is served up for him to eat. {FE 458.1}

Our quest of how to get mental health; first we have to understand what am I mentally occupying up my mind with. What am I mentally pursuing? Is it just frivolous garbage or is it something that is eternal. That’s the question because it’s up to us to determine what we are eating so then we can know what to stop eating.

When those come to you who live to talk, and who are all armed and equipped to say, “Report, and we will report it,” stop and think if the conversation will give spiritual help, spiritual efficiency, that in spiritual communication you may eat of the flesh and drink the blood of the Son of God…. …. ….We are not to be tattlers, or gossipers, or talebearers; we are not to bear false witness. We are forbidden by God to engage in trifling, foolish conversation, in jesting, joking, or speaking any idle words. We must give an account of what we say to God. We will be brought into judgment for our hasty words that do no good to the speaker or to the hearer. Then let us all speak words that will tend to edification. Remember that you are of value with God. Allow no cheap, foolish talk or wrong principles to compose your Christian experience. {FE 458.1}

That’s pretty straightforward. It’s not just about what we speak about. It’s actually what we read or what we watch.

Readers of frivolous, exciting tales become unfitted for the duties of practical life. {1MCP 111.4}

What story lines? Frivolous and exciting tales.

They live in an unreal world. I have watched children who have been allowed to make a practice of reading such stories. Whether at home or abroad, they were restless, dreamy, unable to converse except upon the most commonplace subjects. Religious thought and conversation was entirely foreign to their minds. With the cultivation of an appetite for sensational stories, the mental taste is perverted, and the mind is not satisfied unless fed upon this unwholesome food. I can think of no more fitting name for those who indulge in such reading than mental inebriates. Intemperate habits of reading have an effect upon the brain similar to that which intemperate habits of eating and drinking have upon the body.—Counsels to Parents, Teachers, and Students, 134, 135 (1913). {1MCP 111.4}

As Christians we might say we don’t do drink and smoke and do all these drugs, I gave them up but I will go to the theatre and watch all these exciting comedies or fiction movies or all these story lines that are just exciting. I am doing to my brain what I had been doing to my body and yet they are both exactly the same. If we want mental health there is no suitable, there is no silver bullet or snake oil that you can just take and it is going to fix the problem. There is no special pill to take and you are all going to be all home and hosed. It is cause and effect. If we want mental health then we must eat helpful food mentally and that requires the removing of frivolous and exciting stories, whether they are books or TV or movies or even games, it doesn’t matter. It is all fed into the mind.

Love stories and frivolous, exciting tales constitute another class of books that is a curse to every reader. The author may attach a good moral and all through his work may weave religious sentiments, yet in most cases Satan is but clothed in angel robes the more effectually to deceive and allure. The mind is affected in a great degree by that upon which it feeds. The readers of frivolous, exciting tales become unfitted for the duties lying before them. They live an unreal life and have no desire to search the Scriptures, to feed upon the heavenly manna. The mind is enfeebled and loses its power to contemplate the great problems of duty and destiny.—Testimonies for the Church 7:165 (1902). {1MCP 110.4}

The nature of one’s religious experience is revealed by the character of the books one chooses to read in one’s leisure moments. In order to have a healthy tone of mind and sound religious principles, the youth must live in communion with God through His Word. Pointing out the way of salvation through Christ, the Bible is our guide to a higher, better life. It contains the most interesting and the most instructive history and biography that were ever written. Those whose imagination has not become perverted by the reading of fiction will find the Bible the most interesting of books.—The Youth’s Instructor, October 9, 1902. (Messages to Young People, 273, 274.) {1MCP 108.2}

You just have to take the Bible and read the Bible and read spiritual thoughts and find, how does your mind react to all these biblical, spiritual truths that are written in the prophets of God. The way your mind reacts to it can tell you the condition of the health of your mind and how the mind has become perverted or your imagination has become perverted of this other appetite. Or you just have to look at the child who is grown up on fast food and then you put them in front of vegetables after many, many years of their appetite and do they like brussel sprouts? No, they don’t. They will just put it away and won’t eat it and the same is the mental condition of our society today. Bringing the Bible before someone is allowed putting brussel sprouts before a fast food junkie. I get, “No, thank you.” That’s complicated. I don’t understand. That’s what we eat. I will take nice tasting stuff and we get mental illness. The Bible is in fact the most instructive, the most interesting of all books and it is a guide to a higher and better life. Now there’s another problem. Do you think you can be healthy if you never rest?

Ecclesiastes 12:12 And further, by these, my son, be admonished: of making many books there is no end; and much study is a weariness of the flesh.

What does it say? Much study is a weariness to the flesh. To overtax the brain makes your body depressed.

In the school-room the foundation has been too surely laid for diseases of various kinds. {2SM 436.2}

In the school room, so we are talking about schools, education system. In the education system, there has been a foundation that has been laid in the young people for diseases of various kinds. They are all different.

But, more especially, the most delicate of all organs, the brain, has often been permanently injured by too great exercise. This has often caused inflammation, then dropsy of the head, and convulsions with their dreaded results. And the lives of many have been thus sacrificed by ambitious mothers. Of those children who have apparently had sufficient force of constitution to survive this treatment, there are very many who carry the effects of it through life. The nervous energy of the brain becomes so weakened, that after they come to maturity, it is impossible for them to endure much mental exercise. The force of some of the delicate organs of the brain seems to be expended. {2SM 436.2}

We see that today that 75% of mental illness occurs to people under 25 and we just think has our educational system a little bit too pressured do you think to achieve and to achieve? The ambitious parents or the ambitious people that really want to attain something and they put their mind into it and they come to a certain age and they get a nervous breakdown. I wonder why? Or they get depression or they just get all these problems that arise and that’s because of over study. The Bible says that too much study is weariness to the flesh. It wears it out.

People barely begin their life when they are retired. They will then raise their children and to do all the other taxing things that are required and their constitution is really low because of our society which we live. It’s not just the school room but it is just information overload that we get in our society. Even if we are not at school, doing all these things there are so much information that comes.

The gathering together of many books for study too often interposes between God and man a mass of knowledge that weakens the mind and makes it incapable of assimilating that which it has already received. The mind becomes dyspeptic. Wisdom is needed, that man may choose a right between these many authors and the word of life, that he may eat the flesh and drink the blood of the Son of God. {7T 205.2}

There is so much information coming in that the good things we learned actually don’t get digested. This is reflected even in our dietary problems. People can eat all of the vitamins and minerals and actually don’t get digested by the stomach. People say I eat lots of iron. You’ve got to eat lots of iron and they consume lots of iron but unless the body has a Vitamin C, it cannot absorb iron. If you want iron, what do you eat? Do you eat iron or Vitamin C? Where do you find Vitamin C from? From a cow or from an orange? We know that Vitamin C comes from an orange. We partake of the orange and then the iron that we do get can be absorbed because it is a balanced diet. But if we always think the way the world thinks, we end up getting sick. It is the same with it mentally.

Lots of information, lots of knowledge and there is a Bible text that says don’t be righteous over much and inquiring knowledge you will kill yourself. You can look it up at Solomon’s Writings. He says if you get too much information it’s going to destroy your life because you can’t assimilate that which is actually what you need. You might have a Bible study in the morning and think I’ve done my duty there and then you will just pile in so much other information that’s not actually necessary whether it is looking at all the advertising, every street corner that something to catch your eye and you read it and you read this and all of a sudden you will get the habit of just reading without thinking and then you will just come to the Bible and read without thinking, you are not digesting anything thinking that you are doing your duty. It’s not just about doing too much study, it’s just absorbing too much other information altogether. If we want mental health, we need to get quality of mental food and not too much.

Those who have broken down from mental labor should have rest from wearing thought. {2MCP 508.5}

Ministers, teachers, students, and other brain workers often suffer from illness as the result of severe mental taxation, unrelieved by physical exercise. What these persons need is a more active life. Strictly temperate habits, combined with proper exercise, would ensure both mental and physical vigor and would give power of endurance to all brain workers.—The Ministry of Healing, 238 (1905). {2MCP 508.6}

Here, it is telling us to rejuvenate the brain you have actually to switch occupation. You have to do something else. Here it names physical exercise is one thing.

Psalm 127:1-2 Except the LORD build the house, they labour in vain that build it: except the LORD keep the city, the watchman waketh but in vain. It is vain for you to rise up early, to sit up late, to eat the bread of sorrows: for so he giveth his beloved sleep.

What does God to His loved one, to His beloved? He gives them sleep. In other words, it is vain, it is actually of no value to get up really early in the morning to solve all of our problems and to sit up way late at night to solve all our problems when actually what we need is sleep to solve our problems. When we are doing university, we often have to cram and study, we stay up late and burn the midnight oil or we might stay up late being entertained by the television and all these things is not from God. He says it is vain to rise up early. It is not wrong to get up early in the morning but it is wrong to get up early in the morning and stay up late just to solve your problems when God is the solution to your problems. If we get up early in the morning to seek God and to fulfill certain duties that are required of us then God will give us the strength.

If we are taking up our sleeping times for other mental activities is a positive injury. He gives His beloved sleep. Sleeping and exercise are two things that are very important for mental health. If we want to have mental health we need to have good reading material, good things to occupy our mind on which is none other than the Word of God and things pertaining to eternal life and the duties that God calls us to do. Those things are healthy mental occupation and not over studying and getting sleep as well as exercising. That tells us that exercise actually helps you sleep. A lot of people cannot sleep and perhaps they need a bit more exercise so they can sleep.

Ecclesiastes 5:12 The sleep of a labouring man is sweet, whether he eat little or much: but the abundance of the rich will not suffer him to sleep.

Stress stops your sleep but laboring or physical exertion makes your sleep sweeter. That’s what the Bible says.

Hebrews 4:11 Let us labour therefore to enter into that rest.

In other words, rest is only appreciated when you actually work really hard then you can appreciate rest. If we indolent and we have no activities all day long then rest isn’t attractive and we actually find it harder to sleep or if we don’t have diligent work through the week we don’t appreciate the Sabbath either as much as a working man. Those who work full six days a week in their current jobs know how much valuable the Sabbath is.

1 Timothy 4:8 For bodily exercise profiteth little: but Godliness is profitable unto all things, having promise of the life that now is, and of that which is to come.

Exercise, if it profits a little, no point in doing it. The Bible says it profits a little. There is a profit in exercise, that’s what the Bible says. Now there is a class of people who spend all their life exercising but the exercise is only a little part of the profit because the rest of the text says it. Spiritual understanding and knowing who God is, is of the greatest profit you could ever have. But does that mean that exercise is of no profit. No. Exercise is little profit. Now anyone knows that any profit is good profit. Exercise needs to be done in order to help our spirituality. But if we make exercise and the working out of our body and the building up of our muscles to be the end of our life then we have a very little profit in our life. There are many people who go to the gym and they get the benefit from it but the benefit is actually very little if it’s not connected with spirituality. Now if I want to be spiritual, then there is a benefit from bodily exercise.

For a healthy young man, stern, severe exercise is strengthening to brain, bone, and muscle. And it is an essential preparation for the difficult work of a physician. Without such exercise the mind cannot be in working order. It cannot put forth the sharp, quick action that will give scope to its powers. It becomes inactive. Such a youth will never, never become what God designed he should be. He has established so many resting places that he becomes like a stagnant pool. The atmosphere surrounding him is charged with moral miasma.— Letter 103, 1900 1MCP 117.4 (Mind, Character, and Personality Volume 1)

If we are talking about normality, we are talking about being normal is manufacturer’s settings what God designed us to be then we need to do exercise.

When invalids have nothing to occupy their time and attention, their thoughts become centered upon themselves, and they grow morbid and irritable. Many times they dwell upon their bad feelings until they think themselves much worse than they really are and wholly unable to do anything. In all these cases well-directed physical exercise would prove an effective remedial agent. In some cases it is indispensable to the recovery of health. The will goes with the labor of the hands, and what these invalids need is to have the will aroused. When the will is dormant, the imagination becomes abnormal, and it is impossible to resist disease.—The Ministry of Healing, 239 (1905).

Wow, bodily exercise profits. It has a huge profit in relation to how it helps the brain and the biggest profit of all is what the brain does in regards to the will of God and that is the major profit of our life. In these cases where our attention draws to our self and we grow morbid and irritable, we get annoyed about things, we have bad feelings and we think we are all hard done by and we feel like we cannot do anything, in such a case, bodily exercise is one of the best medicines, one of the best medicines for depression because bodily exercise trains also the will. Do you have to have a will power to be able to train your body?

Yes. Because when we are exercising and it starts hurting we think, “Oh, I just want to lie down again and have a little sleep”. I mean, I naturally love exercise that doesn’t take any effort but I can’t seem to find any that does that because that’s the will that can’t be bothered. But if our will is on to train our body that is a strengthening of our will for other requirements of our life. Rest, not overworking, not over studying, not taxing the brain too much, but exercise and good mental food will start recovering our brain. If we continue with this, sunshine is also important.

Proverbs 15:30 The light of the eyes rejoiceth the heart: and a good report maketh the bones fat.

This good report, good news. Do you know the best news in the world is? That Jesus loved you. That’s the best news that you could ever have. It’s the glad tidings that of what the gospel have done and when we dwell upon the gospel, it is the sunshine in our soul. It is the light in our eyes. Jesus will arise with healing in His wings, the Son of righteousness. As the light comes upon our minds, as we see in our study of God’s Word, we see these beautiful things of heaven and what God is offering us, the joy that is actually set before every Christian, if we dwell our mind on that, it will enlighten, it will lift our heart up in joy and happiness. This sunshine is essential from metal health to dwell upon positive things.

Proverbs 17:22 A merry heart doeth good like a medicine: but a broken spirit drieth the bones.

Before Christ we have a broken spirit and God is looking for people who have broken spirits. As He comes, the gospel, the good news, as we dwell upon that will give medicine to our heart. Jesus Christ is the banner of Gilead. He is the healer of all nations if we will apply the medicine.

Nothing tends more to promote health of body and of soul than does a spirit of gratitude and praise. It is a positive duty to resist melancholy, discontented thoughts and feelings—as much a duty as it is to pray. If we are heaven-bound, how can we go as a band of mourners, groaning and complaining all along the way to our Father’s house? {MH 251.3}

We need to walk in the light. What does that mean to walk in the light? Sometimes as Christians we can get into the clichés of things and say walk in the light. What does it mean to walk in the light? To walk in the light, as it says, we are children of the light. Walk as the children of the light.

“Walk in the light.” To walk in the light means to resolve, to exercise thought, to exert will-power, in an earnest endeavor to represent Christ in sweetness of character. {SD 200.2}

What does it require for my character to become sweet and nice to people? It requires resolution, exercise of my thought and exertion of my will power.

It means to put away all gloom. You are not to rest satisfied simply in saying, “I am a child of God.” Are you beholding Jesus, and, by beholding, becoming changed into His likeness? To walk in the light means advancement and progress in spiritual attainments. Paul declared, “Not as though I had already attained, either were already perfect; but … forgetting those things which are behind,” constantly beholding the Pattern, I reach “forth unto those things which are before.” To walk in the light means to “walk uprightly,” to walk “in the way of the Lord,” to “walk by faith,” to “walk in the Spirit,” to “walk in the truth,” to “walk in love,” to “walk in the newness of life.” It is “perfecting holiness in the fear of God.” {SD 200.2}

What does it mean to walk in the light? To forget those things which are in the past. We cannot walk in the light and yet look behind us to what has happened. We can’t do it. To walk in the light means to exercise my thought, to discipline my thought, to bring every thought into the captivity of Christ. Casting down imaginations and every high thing that exalts against the knowledge of God. Bring pull it in, gird the loins of your mind. Don’t allow your mind just to wander wherever and whatever. Pull it in and point it towards the good news because that is the medicine.

What a terrible thing it is to darken the pathway of others by bringing shadow and gloom upon ourselves! Let each one take heed to himself. Charge not upon others your defections of character…. Talk light; walk in the light. “God is light, and in him is no darkness at all.”… Gather to your souls the courage that can come only from the Light of the world.25 {SD 200.3}

When the light of heaven shines upon the human agent, his countenance will express the joy of the Lord within. It is the absence of Christ from the soul that makes people sad and of a doubtful mind. It is the want of Christ that makes the countenance sad, and the life is a pilgrimage of sighs. Rejoicing is the very keynote of the Word of God for all who receive Him. Why? Because they have the Light of life. Light brings gladness and joy, and that joy is expressed in the life and the character. {SD 200.4}

What makes people sad? The absence of Christ that makes people sad and of doubtful mind. We have the best news ever given to anyone. We have no reason to be sad unless we choose not look at it. Not to let the light penetrate into my retina. Nehemiah 8:10 says that the joy of the Lord is our strength. Do we want to be strong? We have to get this joy of the Lord and that only comes by looking. Just one glimpse of the sun and back in the dark room doesn’t make us happy. It will just make our eyes hurt. We have to dwell in the light. Take the time. Take time to be holy. We need to trust in the Lord to be able to do that. If we don’t trust God, if we don’t really trust Him as in know that He is leading me, if we don’t have that element of trust then it’s just all the much harder to read and believe.

Proverbs 3:5-8 Trust in the LORD with all thine heart; and lean not unto thine own understanding. In all thy ways acknowledge him, and he shall direct thy paths. Be not wise in thine own eyes: fear the LORD, and depart from evil. It shall be health to thy navel, and marrow to thy bones.

What does that mean? I cannot trust God and lean upon my view of things at the same time. Trust in LORD with all thine heart; and lean not unto thine own understanding. How you perceive things, your perceptions, don’t trust them.

What does the word acknowledge mean? To let the cognitive function of your brain latched onto the reality of God at that time. In all your ways acknowledge him, and what will He do? The Bible says He will direct your paths. What if you don’t like it? Don’t lean on your own understanding, keep going. He will direct your paths and then be not wise in your own eyes. Don’t think that you have it together and that we have more wisdom than God. We don’t. We don’t have more wisdom than God at all.

What does it say in verse 8? Verse 8 says it shall be health to thy navel and marrow to thy bones. It’s going to make you healthy. This mentality, this trust will make you healthy. It’s the anchor that can keep someone going through the terrible of storms and can keep someone cheerful though everything in perception is negative yet their light is still known by faith. We need to dwell in God’s shadow, under his wings and trust him.

We need to appreciate more fully the meaning of the words: “I sat down under His shadow with great delight.” Song of Solomon 2:3. These words do not bring to our minds the picture of hasty transit, but of quiet rest. There are many professing Christians who are anxious and depressed, many who are so full of busy activity that they cannot find time to rest quietly in the promises of God, who act as if they could not afford to have peace and quietness. To all such Christ’s invitation is: “Come unto Me, … and I will give you rest.” Matthew 11:28. {7T 69.2}

Our life is quite busy. Somebody will say, “Oh, have a break; oh, I don’t have time for a break”. We don’t have time not to have a break. We have to rest. What does it mean to rest? To wait on the Lord. What does it mean to wait? Sometimes, we got through a trial and we are just looking for the exit door? I want to get out of this stress. Where is it? Where is it? What does the word wait mean? It means wait. That’s what it means. What do you do when you wait? You don’t do anything, just wait. That’s what it means. To wait on the Lord, we are going to renew our strength. Sometimes, we have some sufferings. We just have to bear them and wait and just wait. We think something has to be done. No, no, wait and rest. We get so anxious of all the problems that we have to overcome we see my character is so defective cross about to come, I need to be ready otherwise I will be lost. Just wait. He will save us if we trust Him in all our ways. God’s people are to exercise this. There is this atmosphere that we are to breathe, the piece of heaven that we are to take in. Do you think you can be healthy without breathing pure air? If we just inhale all the smoke and poison of man’s making, do you think we can be healthy? Will it make us patient and kind? Not at all. We need to take in big drops of heaven’s atmosphere.

Although there may be a tainted, corrupted atmosphere around us, we need not breathe its miasma, but may live in the pure air of heaven. We may close every door to impure imaginings and unholy thoughts by lifting the soul into the presence of God through sincere prayer. Those whose hearts are open to receive the support and blessing of God will walk in a holier atmosphere than that of earth and will have constant communion with heaven. {SC 99.2}

We need to have more distinct views of Jesus and a fuller comprehension of the value of eternal realities. The beauty of holiness is to fill the hearts of God’s children; and that this may be accomplished, we should seek for divine disclosures of heavenly things. {SC 99.3}

We want to open our hearts and pray to the lord and that is breathing heaven in doing that. Because prayer doesn’t bring God down to us. It brings us up to God.

Let the soul be drawn out and upward, that God may grant us a breath of the heavenly atmosphere. We may keep so near to God that in every unexpected trial our thoughts will turn to Him as naturally as the flower turns to the sun. {SC 99.4}

In our study this week, we have a man and he was saying when something bad happens and it is just really quick reaction that he has and he just flies and he does things without even thinking and then he thinks, “Oh, I should have the Lord there but it happened so fast he thought how could I actually think fast enough to beat that.” His reaction was faster than lightning, he reckons. He says, “how can my prayer be faster than that?” It is by exercise. It says we might keep so near to God that in every unexpected trial, our thoughts will turn to him as naturally as the flower turns to sun. It will be a natural response when something annoys me and my response is to say hasty words then through the gospel and through the practice of prayer, my natural reaction can be straight away, “Lord, help me.” That will give mental stability. This is breathing heavenly atmosphere. Keep your wants, your joys, your sorrows, your cares and your fears before God. You cannot burden Him. You cannot weary Him. He who numbers the hairs of heads is not indifferent to the wants of His children. Tell Him everything. There is nothing you can tell Him that will burden Him. This is the last point.

1 Corinthians 15:33 Be not deceived: evil communications corrupt good manners.

If we want to be part of the heavenly atmosphere in prayer, we want to actually be where the manners that we are developing are being developed by other people because if we go into a society where it is corrupt and evil and there is a lot of evil communication then our manners will be corrupted. If we want mental health, we need to make some decisions and those decisions are what we do with our company, who we spend our time with.

It has been truly said, “Show me your company, and I will show you your character.” The youth fail to realize how sensibly both their character and their reputation are affected by their choice of associates. One seeks the company of those whose tastes and habits and practices are congenial. He who prefers the society of the ignorant and vicious to that of the wise and good shows that his own character is defective. His tastes and habits may at first be altogether dissimilar to the tastes and habits of those whose company he seeks; but as he mingles with this class, his thoughts and feelings change; he sacrifices right principles and insensibly yet unavoidably sinks to the level of his companions. As a stream always partakes of the property of the soil through which it runs, so the principles and habits of youth invariably become tinctured with the character of the company in which they mingle. {CT 221.1}

Birds of a feather flock together. If we want to have mental health we need to partake of the correct food. We need to have the correct habits of resting and not over study whether it be in the education of getting our job or even the study of the Bible and we need to have good rest. We need to have the sunshine of the gospel as well as physical exercise profits our mental health. We need to have prayer to give the atmosphere of heaven and we need to choose people to mingle with. Who do you enjoy the most spending your time with? Because if we find it relaxing or nice to spend time with people with the lowest standard of what they want to achieve, our standard will lower to this. How can two people walk together unless they agreed? They can’t. If we choose the company to spend time with, we must have to come into some sort of agreement to actually continue in a relationship. If I want to choose this right way, I need to find people who have the same objective and whether my flesh likes them or not, I need to continue with that so that my goals will remain high as the Lord has led me and the individual to choose.

John the Baptist was a man filled with the Holy Ghost from his birth, and if there was anyone who could remain unaffected by the corrupting influences of the age in which he lived, it was surely he. Yet he did not venture to trust his strength; he separated himself from his friends and relatives, that his natural affections might not prove a snare to him. He would not place himself unnecessarily in the way of temptation nor where the luxuries or even the conveniences of life would lead him to indulge in ease or to gratify his appetite, and thus lessen his physical and mental strength. By such a course the important mission upon which he came would have failed of its accomplishment. {4T 108.3}

What did John the Baptist do? The strong man filled with the Holy Ghost? Even though he was a strong man, he withdrew himself from friends and relatives that will not want to go where he was going. Many people say I need to be with my friends and relatives so I can win them. What ends up happening is they win you. Are we stronger than John the Baptist? No. Then would we not want to do what John the Baptist did because if we keep bad company or company of lowest standards as a pleasure thing, it’s not that you can’t come in contact with people of lower standards but it is who we enjoy our society with social activities of just enjoying one another. We mingle with people for the purpose of salvation and only as the Lord leads because our prayer is, “Lord, lead me not into temptation but deliver me from evil.” The Bible says let us not forsake the assembling of our selves together as the manner of some is but the closer that Jesus comes, the more that we need to come together. The more important it is that we come together. Why? Because we need all the strength that we can get. As we come together there is an important activity that we must do.

Proverbs 16:23-24 The heart of the wise teacheth his mouth, and addeth learning to his lips. Pleasant words are as an honeycomb, sweet to the soul, and health to the bones.

As we come to the Lord, we need to let the Lord educate our minds so that when we come together we speak kind words to each other because these kind words to each other are sweet like honeycomb and they are, what does it say? They are health to the bones. Some people don’t like to have nice words. They think it is weak. But they think they are just sweet nothings. But God’s people will have genuine care and will have learning upon the lip and that is how to speak kind words with meaning from the Lord Jesus Christ and not to just speak unkind, unkindly to our children or unkindly to anybody creates a negative atmosphere and breathing in that negative atmosphere causes sickness. If you want mental health, if I want mental health, then I must put away all secular entertainment through media, through reading, through games, all the comedies, all the frivolity, all the light jesting and joking that is of no value or whatsoever, every idle word that has no consequences at all needs to be put away. We need to take off any burdens of study that is too much for our minds. If our study is taxing us too much, we need to back off for our soul’s sake. If we are discouraged, we need to exercise our bodies so our bodies are healthy because our body affects our brain and our brain affects our bodies.

That will strengthen our will because if we understood the power of the will, when aligned with God’s will, we are strong. As we dwell upon the sunshine of the gospel, that will join our hearts. Join our hearts and we can trust God. Really trust Him and keep it as an anchor not leaning on my feelings or emotions and waiting for the Lord to give me the victories over my sins. Don’t be discouraged if we are not there yet. Wait on the Lord. Wait on Him. Trust Him. He will get you there. He has promised. He will do it. I’m going to rest in His arms. My prayer will go out to Him from a breath of heavenly atmosphere and I’m going to choose the company of saints that are seeking the Lord also. Put myself in as many positions where I can be where God’s blessings will be upon His people and to cut off every other social activity that does not have God’s blessing in it. Speak kindly to one another. It is my prayer that we can do this because this is how we get mental health and you will never know how until you do it. It’s our prayer we can do it and we build a house on the rock. It is my prayer in Jesus’ name.

Amen.

Posted on June 10, 2012, in Divine Service Sermons, Sermons For Sabbath. Bookmark the permalink. Leave a comment.

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