“But one thing is certain: until receiving unconditional love and affirmation, unblessed souls are bound to struggle. Some, like the younger brother in Jesus’s well-known parable of the prodigal son, run away and waste everything. Others are like the older brother in the parable who stayed at home, did all the right things that others applaud, but had no real joy in his heart.”- Alan Wright
In Chapter 1 (“The Problem of the Unblessed Life”) of The Power to Bless, Alan Wright talks about the pain people experience when they never receive authentic blessing. Hence, Pastor Wright examines five struggles that emerged from Jacob’s unblessed mentality. Today Pastor Wright discusses the first two struggles.
Struggle 1: Shame. Pastor Wright compares shame to an inner recording that convinces us we don’t measure up. It’s a nonstop, hidden squawk. In addition, the angst we feel when ashamed is subconscious. Yet, it’s gnawing pain causes great discomfort. As a result, we’ll do almost anything to avoid that feeling.
Furthermore, shame’s lie tells you that you can’t be blessed. And, Alan notes, that mantra haunted Jacob. Because his feelings of inadequacy found root in two primary, timeless dispensers of shame:
a. a culture that intensely favored firstborn sons. So, Pastor Wright asks, what cultural voice of condemnation attacks you most?
b. an unhealthy family. Shame creeps in when an unblessed child wonders, What’s wrong with me? Why am I not blessed like others?
Struggle 2: Pretense. If you believe you can’t be blessed in your current state, you naturally assume you must hide your flaws so no one else sees them. For example, the real Marilyn Monroe studied art history and accumulated a personal library of over four hundred books. However, no one blessed her for those virtues. So, she acted like an empty-headed blonde instead.
And Jacob posed as Esau because unblessed souls rarely find themselves comfortable in their own skin. When someone affirms your persona, they haven’t affirmed the real you. Pretense begets loneliness.
Today’s question: Who blesses you with unconditional love and affirmation? Please share.
Tomorrow’s blog: “Unblessed lives – rarely focused”