I was thinking about the extended family I am going to spend time with soon. One of their children struggles with ADD. I have been diagnosed with it, but I don't have very severe symptoms. I have tried a few medications over the years, but the side effects made me stop. I just tried a new medication in the last month with the same unbearable side effects. My oldest son has very mild ADD, and functions fine on a small dosage of medication.
Now that I have recently once again given up on medicating myself for ADD due to the side effects I have experienced, I started thinking that maybe I don't have ADD. When on medication I do tend to get more work done, but the medication is basically just a stimulant. Who wouldn't get more work done on a stimulant?
What doesn't change when I am on medication is the feeling that someone or something is drawing me towards more holy pursuits, and away from my daily grind.
So, maybe I have GDD instead of ADD -- God Deficit Disorder instead of Attention Deficit Disorder. Maybe God knows I need help in focusing more of my time serving Him instead of myself, and occasionally he sends the Holy Spirit to remind me.
I don't mean to suggest ADD is not a real thing. My own son is definitive proof that it is. I don't meant to suggest that ADD cannot be treated with medication. My son has thrived while on medication for ADD, and has struggled without it.
What I am suggesting is that perhaps WHAT I PERCEIVE AS ADD IN MYSELF is really the Holy Spirit calling me to live a life more worthy of the Lord.
Perhaps the Holy Spirit is calling me to do what God created me to naturally crave -- to serve God with all my heart and soul; to stop being so selfish with my time and other limited resources.
Here is a case in point. I have a ton of work to do. I make money based on how much I work. I am self-employed. I make far more than I "need." However, to maintain my standard of living, my client base, and my workload, I have to work more than I financially really "need" to. I think many people are stuck in this same vicious cycle. [More on that in another post.]
As I worked my way through my inbox today, I noticed an email I sent myself early this morning while reading the news online. It was a link to a new article about federal grants available for home rehabilitation. I sent it to myself to forward to our city manager to see if it was available locally.
Several months ago I had met a nice lady working a low wage job who said she had inherited a house that she could not afford to repair. It was uninhabitable, and getting worse every time it rained. I inquired with city officials, but the assistance program we once had locally stopped getting funding years ago. The article appeared to offer hope of a yet untapped federal grant program. So, I spent a bit of my time sifting through my prior emails, and asking the city manager to again investigate to see if this program was available for the lady.
It didn't take a whole lot of time, but it took some. That is the type of "distraction" that I often get involved in. It takes me away from work-work. A few of those distractions can eat up an hour of my time. Before long, I find myself behind at work, and I start to blame my ADD. When it gets bad enough, I try the ADD medication again.
But maybe it's not a chemical imbalance in my brain. Maybe it's God calling me to focus my time and my energy on what REALLY matters -- loving my neighbors.
Maybe the frustration I call ADD is really God's love calling me closer to Him.
Maybe trying to medicate these "distractions" away is a catastrophic cop out.
Maybe I am missing opportunities to serve the Lord that I cannot even imagine.