Tag Archives: Theology

On Personality and Character

A healthy person is a whole person. A healthy person is not of a different character depending on his altered circumstance or position.  A healthy person is the same person whether with kings or commoners, whether in want or in plenty, whether being praised or criticized.

A healthy person displays the same self in every room in the house, and whether at home or abroad. His identity and morally sensitive values are clear to him and to others.  A healthy person is of an honest and steady character. He is most often able to be relied upon to behave prudently and tends to inspire confidence.

This is not to say he has a perfect character, it is to say he possesses a stable, socially acceptable character. The healthy person is human and will experience a wide range of emotion. He will make his share of mistakes, commit his sins, however he will generally respond to his mistakes and to his sins by taking ownership of them, and by attempting to correct or atone in a responsible manner wherever possible, no matter his personality or temperament.

Some people are unheahlthy, as they have made their way through life never forming a solid identity of their own. They have failed to develop a cohesive sense of self or a coherent system of belief and values. These people are unpredictable at best. They have great difficulty in making decisions- generally either making them too hastily or tending to avoid decisions altogether. They find it complicated to be consistent from day to day.

These people are usually reacting to the moment, behaving in whatever way the hour appears to dictate. Their behavior tends to inspire or at the least contribute to chaos. To be emotionally out of control is more normal than not for these persons as they are routinely fluctuating between emotional flooding and an emotional void. Many are labeled by the mental health field as clinically neurotic and often as disordered personalities.

Then there are those who form a definite identity of their own, including a system of belief and values, but the identity is for one reason and another a socially or morally unacceptable identity. These people are nearly always on stage- acting- pretending to be whatever the moment requires as they do not wish to make their true identity apparent.

They are often difficult to discern as they are highly manipulative and are usually largely engaged in managing impressions and outcomes, regularly leaving little time for anything else. They are most concerned with managing the thoughts of others and ultimately the behavior of others, especially those closest to them.  It may be rightly perceived as a highly sophisticated form of bullying.

Mental health professionals are easily occupied with clients and patients who have spent too much time in the company of someone of this type. This type is recognized to have a disturbed or disordered personality and is increasingly known by the mental health field as CHARACTER disturbed. These are the essentially psychotic. Once recognized, others do best to distance themselves from these people, immediately if possible.

Surely, it is evident and we must admit that the stream of mental health must grapple with every other brook of study and with all academic disciplines ultimately converge to form a river running straight into the ocean of Theology.

To read more on this topic please see, Character Disturbance by George K. Simon, Jr., Phd, also see, People Of The Lie by M. Scott Peck, MD, and Lies, Lies, Lies by Charles V. Ford, MD.

Copyright 2017.  L.L.  Shelton.

Always Let Your Conscience Be Your Guide, Part 2

Have you heard the one about the psychotic and the neurotic?  The psychotic  knows that two plus two equals five.  The neurotic knows that two plus two equals four, but he worries about it.  There’s an education is this bit of humor!

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Always Let Your Conscience Be Your Guide

How does one arrive at a disturbed character? This is not a rhetorical question. One arrives at a disturbed character by continually ignoring three things:

1. The Genuine Existence of God
2. The Authentic Character of God
3. The Justice System of God

The Bible tells us clearly that every human is equipped with a conscience and that the conscience is there to point him or her toward God; to reveal His very genuine existence as well as His authentic character, and to make obvious His definition of right and wrong- His system of justice.

The Scriptures also tell us that the man or woman who does not see any benefit in retaining this knowledge of conscience will eventually be possessed of the depraved mind that is left to him or to her.  The Bible tells us that this depraved mind is capable of all types of evil- probably beyond what some who have thoroughly nurtured the conscience are capable of imagining.

This depraved mind is the one that displays the disturbed or disordered character; this mind is held captive by a system of belief that has developed a set of core values (to direct the soul)  that is selfish to the degree of being diabolical. This mind is the antithesis of the mind of God, if you will allow, an anti-Christ.

How does one keep himself or herself from arriving at this reprehensible state?This also is not a rhetorical question. The answer is evident. One must continually nurture belief in the three things one’s conscience has been designed to bring to attention:

1. The Genuine Existence of God
2. The Authentic Character of God
3. The Justice System of God

From the beginning, each and every time one is situationally placed so that it is necessary to purposely acknowledge these three things one must be made to do so- forced by his or her own will to acknowledge the conscience or by the will of an earthly authority figure such as a parent, a teacher, or other official to do so as the conscience must be the arbitrator of what many theologians refer to as common grace; and the truly converted under specific grace if  momentarily and specifically submissive, shall be aided further by yielding to the will of The Holy Spirit of God within the self so accessing the wisdom and power available to him or her.

The person who consciously and continually engages in an effort to refute or to silence the conscience will naturally digress to the condition of the disturbed character. The disturbed character will appear as having no conscience and will yet be a “functioning” member of the community.  A disordered character is displayed by one who was once only disturbed but has now slipped into the realm of the surely dysfunctional (rendered incapable of carrying out the requisite responsibilities of society).

The failure to nurture the conscience is the failure to nurture Truth and will surely result in the demise of the individual and the eventual destruction of any general population in which these individuals are prevalent.

Notably, George K. Simon, Jr., Ph.D., has done a beautiful job of further explanation, and in giving socially  acceptable as well as academically responsible language to the subject matter found here and in our Bibles (particularly in the book of Romans), in the book he authored: Character Disturbance, The Phenomenon of Our Age.

We must take seriously the view of ourselves found in God’s Holy Word for the protection of ourselves, our loved ones, and for the benefit of humanity as a whole. May God help us!

Copyright 2017. L.L. Shelton