I have a family history of alcoholism. I also have a family history of tobacco addiction, depression, divorce, unusually strained relationships, Diabetes, Glaucoma, and Macular Degeneration. I also had a family member who visited a fortune teller a few times.
Why would I start a post telling you that? Because strictly from a physical addiction standpoint, according to research and science, having a family history of any addiction can increase my risk of addiction. And according to Biblical and Church teaching, having a family history or familiarity with some occult practices can increase my risk of the same.
Risk Factors for Addiction
“Typically, addiction is considered to involve several complex risk factors: Genetics, Family history, Current environment, Gender, Mental health condition.”
To me, the above information can also be applied to a spiritually weakened immune system. But first, what is an immune system? “The immune system is the body’s defense against infectious organisms and other invaders.” (emphasis mine) So our immune system protects us from being invaded. More often than not, we think of the immune system primarily when it comes to physical illness. And yet we use the word, “immune” to mean all sorts of various things.
I’m probably immune to whatever it is you tried to do.
Jonny was all but immune to them.
She wondered what made it immune to the destruction.
“Several complex risk factors” are needed for a weakened immune system. Think about an illness going through a school, church, or family. Not everyone gets sick even though all of them received the same exposure. Some had stronger immune systems and were able to fight the “invaders.” The same holds true in the emotional and spiritual life.
Spiritually Weakened Immune System
Two people can watch a movie that deals with the subject matter of mental health with two very different reactions. One can watch the movie and enjoy it for its cinematic artistry while the other has a full-on anxiety attack at the thought they might be mentally ill because they recognize behavioral similarities. Speaking from experience here.
The reactions will vary in part based on their “immune system.” The friend who watched the movie and strictly saw it as entertainment may not have a family history of mental illness. The other friend, left rattled and anxious after the movie, very well may have a family history–genetic or otherwise, that affected the way they viewed and internalized the movie.
Two people can grab a drink once a week after work with varying effects. The one may be completely content with a once a week beer while the other–dealing with the stresses of life, maybe some health issues and a predisposition towards addiction might begin drinking more than one beer or going out more than one night a week.
Although the exact same activity in similar looking people, the interior disposition, genetics and family history can cause a very different response.
Two friends may attend the same Yoga class but again, based on family history, may have different inclinations. Although they both may see it as simply stretching, if one of them has a family history of dabbling in the New Age or Paganism, they may, in fact, be opening a generational doorway for the enemy. And maybe they don’t have a family history of New Age or occult dabblings, maybe their current environment though easily lends itself to an opening.
I understand these are not popular opinions I’m expressing here, on either side of the fence. More Traditional and Conservatives will say, “Down with Hollywood! Drinking is always wrong! Yoga is always an Eastern Religion practice!” And more Liberal, or even those who have never given this topic much thought will cry, “You’re full of bull! There is no such thing as a family history connection when it comes to the influence of the media, alcohol, or Eastern Religions on our mental, emotional or spiritual health!”
And probably to the dismay of some, I’m not going to continue this post in detail. This post is barely scratching the tip of a complex issue both genetically, psychologically, and spiritually. I am not a doctor or theologian, both of which may be helpful when considering the influences mentioned in this post.
And how do you know if you should seek the counsel of one or the other mentioned above? Examine your life. Take note of where you are in all areas of your life. Ask God to show you what you need to know about the direction of your life. Be ready though because He will answer you. Also be aware the enemy may be whispering the opposite.
Where there is no guidance, a people falls, but in an abundance of counselors, there is safety.
Without counsel plans fail, but with many advisers, they succeed.
My people are destroyed for lack of knowledge;
Don’t Shoot the Messenger
I recently received an unusually upset comment on a post. It was obvious I had struck a nerve in the heart and mind of the commenter. Rather than examine her own reaction, she lashed out at me. And this post, already simmering in my mind, came to fruition. There possibly was something she was already predisposed to in that post that caused such a strong reaction.
This simmering post also came about after seeing a few well-meaning Christians “just…” and slowly slide away from or completely jump the precipice from a devout faith to a weakened or non-existent faith. Our faith is a gift and one that can be misused or lost. Please do not take it for granted.
If you feel the fire of love and devotion to God and the church has cooled, stop where you are! Begin to backtrack and find out where you started to go off course. Friends, God didn’t wander away from you. You wandered from Him.
If this is something you’ve never thought of, maybe you should. If you are already aware of these possibilities, you’re welcome. It’s always nice to know we do not stand alone when an un-Christian world may decry the mere thought of a spiritually weakened immune system.
I am someone with a notable family history that gives me caution when it comes to physical addictions, spiritual wandering, and mental health issues because I understand the effects of a weakened immune system. I am an avid reader with a curious mind who recognizes a very real enemy prowling around looking for an opening to kill, steal, devour, and destroy. And although this is a solitary post written by me, I am not unique or alone in this recognition and understanding.