WHERE IS MY FINAL DESTINATION?
WITH MY EXISTENCE
I have always experienced shortage of money that I have been unable to buy many of my needs and those of others. I have always experienced poor health resulting to my unable to do many of the things I need to do for myself and others. My capabilities have always fallen below what is necessary to realize many of the things I, as well as those of others need to have realized. Why have I failed in so many of my personal, professional, and business endeavors? Am I being deservedly punished? Would it be indiscreet of me to protest against the cause of my existence, and the cause of the scripture, from which the words have not really been true at least for me? How can it say that the God of the scripture is just, loves us, and is our father when inspite of my efforts which were merely out of my general motivation to provide life, not only for myself but also for others, I always fail? At least, this is what I think.
QUESTIONS ON THE CAUSE OF MY EXISTENCE
If one who is supposed to be the cause of all the causes of the effects of everything in the universe, which includes my existence is the God of this universe, then what sort of a God could He be? Is He an arbitrary judge, a tyrant ruler, or a sadist? Or is he really The Father who sees everything and who, as being the cause, loves the effects- us including me, allows only that which will be the ultimate good for us, including me?
After all, fathers among us, know that we know more than our infants could understand, that many times we take them away from what they were doing which they find it wholesomely pleasant but we know it to be pleasantly dangerous. After all, the reference for the time frame of a significant stage of life for fathers is at least a twenty year span compared to that of an infant which is at most, a twenty hour span. In the end it is still the fathers among many of us, who have been providing them with their needs out of our sacrifices.
But as supposedly a creature and according to the scripture, a person being adopted from out of dust, to a slave, now to that of a child, how can I find signs of the love of God the father for me? How can I live in a world without signs of being loved by supposedly my God? I do not know for others.
WITH THE PRICE OF MY EXISTENCE TO OTHERS
But then, there have been many incidents in my life, when because of the development of my personal characteristics, I have inflicted damages to my friends, my subordinates, my superiors, my brothers, and my parents. It is only after many years later that I have come to realize these. How could I have done these to others? What about those incidents which I may not have even realized yet? Can I ever pay for the damages that I have done? These questions pierce my heart and haunt my soul. What for then are all these material or professional successes in the world I have so craved for? What for, if inflicting pain to others have already attached to my central personal character from which my capability to succeed stems? What for if because of this condition, the rate of my capability to succeed, becomes directly proportional to the extent of damage I inflict on others?
WITH THE REALIZATION OF THE UNDERLYING CAUSE OF MY UNHEALTHY EXISTENCE
First, a series of events progressed towards my realization of nakedness or having nothing in this world. Then a series of events in my life made me able to experience the words in the scripture many times in my being nothing. God provided me with what I essentially needed, everyday. I have realized thru these concrete experiences that God does exists not only as the creator of the universe but also as my provider. This led me to ponder on how deeply I could actually experience the words in the scripture stating that God loves us as a father to his children.
EXISTENCE DEVOID OF LOVE
Then as the experiences of men all around me according to what I learned, as well as that of my own accumulated, I have begun to see a general pattern of life in this world which is narrowing down to only two options: sustaining one's self which necessitates it to be at the expense of the other, or; sustaining life for others which necessitates it to be at the expense of one's self. This tragic existence of ours have been leading me to become attracted to that object of our existence as provided by God in the scripture, that is: to love God with our whole being and to love others as ourselves. Mystified by its seemingly over simplified yet admittedly desirable object of life, I realized painfully that it is not that simple to experience this. It is because this time, I am slowly realizing that I am the opposite of this object of our existence which is love, as I have already described my behavior earlier. What I am, is selfishness. Based on the scripture, being contrary to the object of our life as given by God, this is a pathological condition labeled as, sin. Indeed, I have been a sinner all my life. What a realization then to have become aware that what has been making my life sick all along is not my material poverty, but my sin. It is sin that has been destroying my function to love. Such is my condition which is unhealthy.
It is in this scripture that I have come to learn, that those actions of mine, were the consequences of my having been consumed with selfishness which produced pride. So these all along, have been the conditions that have done damage to others and also to me. The full extent of its consequences, I may not yet have been able to fully realize.
There have been many other events that took place in my life that I never understood yet were so painful. Thru the scripture, I was able to identify a pattern. I realized that my selfishness which produced pride, produced another agent of pathological condition of life- lust. To sustain my lust, I necessarily had to let my pride be defended also. They became mutually defending each other. Such condition attached to my thoughts. Such condition in my thoughts became the subtle but potent drive underneath my actions. I saw that from my actions, its potency in proportion to that of other factors of my environment it interacted with, developed these conditions to materialize in my life and in the lives of other people. In my case, it initially pleased me which I thought was the real life. But such a condition with which I was a contributor, brought only actual or potential misery to others. I saw that it was only a matter of time when it caught up with me and made life with my presence among others, a burden. I saw that such a condition progressively worsened thru the years.
REALIZATION OF THE LINK BETWEEN MY LIKELIHOOD OF WORLDLY SUCCESS FOR ME AND MY LIKELIHOOD OF INFLICTING INJURY TO OTHERS
I am beginning to see thru my experiences in the past the existence of the connection between my capability to succeed which is attached with selfishness which produced pride and lust, and my likelihood to bring damage to other people. I have seen that while the damages to myself and others caused by my environment to which I myself have a contribution has been contained, my capability to succeed in my desires no matter how seemingly noble they may have been, has always fallen short. Based on this pattern, I could project then that, had my capability to succeed been better, my chances to inflict greater damages to others would have also been higher. The pain in my heart and the haunting of my soul would have even been more intense as to make my life nearer to the edge.
This happened to people I know personally. There is this man whom I have known since high school, was raised in a school which provided high quality formation of academics, of technical foundation, of values and of everything required to become a gentleman. He is handsome and has been successful in bringing to a tremendous growth the business he inherited from his parents. He married the girl he had for quite some time, a crush on. He raised a family. He had been a generous donor to those who have been in need. For years, I had always looked at him to be a classic model of a very lucky man. Then I came to know he was on the verge of separation from his wife due to his having a several years affair with another woman. The process of running the affairs of the business he so built for years had also been affected due to decisions not based on business management judgements but on the underlying cause which is, the affair with the other woman.
I have not seen the actual consequences of his actions. What could be the effect on his wife upon discovery of the affair? What would be the effect on his children upon discovery of the affair? Since according to what I heard, the process of running the affairs of his business has been affected, how would this affect production? How would consumers be affected? What would be the consequences to their employees and their families?
I have been exactly as this person is. With selfishness that produced pride and lust that attached within my thoughts, had my rate in capability to succeed been as high as that of his, the potential intensity and extent of damage I would have inflicted would have been the same as that of what he had. Therefore, I am also sick of the same sins. I just did not have the opportunity due to my failures.
Emotionally, these failures have been very painful to me as an individual person. But intellectually, I can appreciate these failures to have been the factors that contributed to the containment of damages and the sustainment of people around me in particular and of humanity in general. This intellectual realization would not have happened had I not been thru series of events of cause and effects that lead me to hear the word of God in the scripture regularly, and be nourished by it. It would not have happened had I not been given just the kind of intellectual characteristics to see the connection of events with what has already been prophetically written in the scripture.
But is not emotion just as real as the intellectual? They are both non-material internal to man which responds to an external stimulus. In turn, either of the two becomes also the stimulus that would initiate a process that leads to an external and materializing action. It is always the intellectual that has the means to dialogue with reality. That is why medical doctors, soldiers, policemen, priests and all those involved in service whose work involves much both emotion and intellectual, have to let intellectual manage the emotion, in order to accomplish the right results. In turn, the emotions become the gauge of whether the effect on us of the earlier intellectual process was good or bad. This in turn will stimulate the intellectual to assess accordingly the earlier intellectual process and base on it the next intellectual process.
By this, how then can I consider my failures as a curse? By this, how can I have thought that God has abandoned me? In fact, I should be thankful to him for having provided me with all the things that have led me to the realization of the meaning of all these events. What the scripture says, is true then that I am a sinner, and that God has forgiven us, including me. It is true then that God loves us, including me.
If what the scripture says about the existence of God and his love for us has been consistently true, how then could what it says about the rest, be not true?
HISTORY OF INFECTION TRACED
According to the scripture, it was by the agent of a condition of presumptuousness of knowing more than what God has revealed to him, which Adam attached to his thoughts. This made living, as if God is not the source of life, his existing condition. Whereas before, Adam was not affected by his nakedness or having nothing since God was his source of everything, this time it was by existing in such a condition of independence of God, that he became conscious of his nakedness or having nothing.
Because of this new condition, from being the factor that drew him to be dependent on God, nakedness this time became the factor that drove him away from God- the source of life. Is this not exactly what I have experienced with nothingness with my own condition?
REALIZATION OF THE LINKS BETWEEN MY UNHEALTHY CONDITION, THE UNDERLYING CAUSE, AND THE INTERVENTION BY GOD
Now I have seen the answers to the question on why suffer, in my own life as interpreted by the scripture. The interpretation is the information in the scripture corroborated by my personal history. The answer is, that we have inherited the condition our earliest parents have been infected with. Therefore we have been doomed to perish starting with the most vulnerable ones. Thus, for the most vulnerable ones, the consequences of sin that has infected the world are easily drawn to them to be the ones to pay first and pay the heaviest. This accounts for my observation that the world today has generally only two options: being either sustaining one's self which by necessity has to be at the expense of the other, or; sustaining life for the other which by necessity has to be at the expense of one's self. Who then wants to be the most vulnerable? This accounts for Adam in the scripture, not having been able to accept his nakedness after he was infected by sin. He could not accept his being vulnerable. This corruption replicated to the next generations.
But because, according to the gospel of John in the scripture: "God loved the world: he gave his only Son, so that everyone who believes in him may not perish but may have eternal life." God sent his only son Jesus Christ and detached the consequences of sin from us, and be attached to his son thru his having become man and the most vulnerable to receive all of the consequences of the conditions of sin. The consequences to the whole world of the condition of selfishness which produced pride, lust, greed, envy, anger, and all of the sins of all of us from all generations were attached to him. As the consequences of the condition of sin were drawn to Jesus Christ, we who inherited the characteristics of our earliest parents from one generation to the next were spared of the consequences of sin. Thus, we did not perish.
Scripture says that after three days, Jesus Christ had resurrected.
So it is with us who are in the condition of sin. If we let ourselves be vulnerable such that the consequences of the condition of sins of others be drawn towards us, it will be us who will be the ones to pay in place of others. This leads us to sustain life for others at our expense. The dynamics of life according to the scripture has been: By our having deviated from the natural process of life caused by our condition of selfishness which produced pride, greed, lust and other sins, the cycle of regeneration of life became imbalanced. Life became finite. But again, according to the scripture, since Jesus Christ has resurrected, a new dimension has been opened for us: Recovery after destruction. Only thru the death and resurrection of the Son of God could this have been made possible.
VALIDATION OF THIS INTERPRETATION IN MY OWN LIFE
My anguish over my worldly failures was stopped by my realization of how much injury I have been inflicting on others. The urge for me to be able to repay them became overwhelmingly greater than the pain of my personal failures. My anguish over my failures has calmed me down by the realization of the meaning of my failures which is a block against my tendency to inflict injury to others. Knowing my pathological nature, I can only attribute these realizations to the miraculous intervention in my life by God. There have been few moments in my life that out of gratitude to him, I did not resist his spirit of “loving the enemy”. Those were few moments when I did not prevent the spirit of Jesus Christ of offering one’s life to recover the losses others were responsible for, from taking over my thoughts. Those few moments drove my actions to also forgive others who have inflicted injury to me. Those few moments brought me to experience what according to the scripture Jesus Christ went thru in letting himself be the one to absorb the consequences of sin of all men of this world out of love. I know I am one of these men of the world whose consequences of sin he absorbed. I know because, I know the consequences of sin not only to others but to the one who committed it. I know that with the kind of sins I have committed, I would have been destroyed a long time ago. For a very long time, I did not even know my sins, nor their consequences. Yet why am I still here? Had it not been for someone else instead of me, having absorbed the consequences of my sins?
Now that I experienced being the one absorbing the sins of others, I suffered and would have been destroyed for a long period of my life as usual by the injury inflicted on me by that other person. Yes, I did suffer. I was also destroyed but this time, it was but a fleeting period. Thereafter, I came out still functioning. Above all, I was able to share the joy of Jesus Christ in having given one’s life to the enemy. Yet I have also been his enemy and still is, every time I fall into sin. Here in this world, the battle to attach my thoughts with the spirit of Jesus Christ against that of the conditions of sin still continues. But there is now a new dynamics of life that I have never known before: Resurrection. This time it is not only according to the scripture. This time it is according to my experiences. If I experienced the same dynamics of resurrection as that of Jesus Christ in my every day situation, will I not experience the same when I ultimately die physically? But now that I have an idea on how much Jesus Christ has been loving me, I think I know where my final destination will be. It is home where Jesus Christ is. I seems nearer today.
This is why I wrote this report: To share with every one, both the living and the yet to live, the chance to experience the journey towards the peaceful joy of this realization, and; to invite everyone to accept the invitation of our creator and God the father to arrive at the final destination of our life, his home with his son, Jesus Christ.
José Miguel García