There’s an all too common disease that thwarts all the greatest efforts toward lasting self-improvement, and it’s called: Improvement Deficiency Syndrome (IDS).
IDS occurs in both men and women, old and young, across seemingly every demographic and socio-economic sector. IDS appears early in some, has a late onset in others. The symptoms of IDS include the following:
- Persistent resistance to a positive attitude.
- The ability to hear hundreds of sermons and still not improve.
- Inborn selfishness that exhibits itself with repeated flare-ups.
- Sudden anger, jealousy, and easily taking offense at something obscure.
- Pervasive self-pity and the justification necessary to feed it.
- The making of excuses to cover one’s lack of growth.
- The continued placement of self at the center of the universe.
- The ability to see any self-serving action as justifiable and righteous.
These symptoms are serious. If you or anyone you know appears to be exhibiting these effects, see your Ally immediately. If you detect that being in a positive environment, reading scripture, and associating with uplifting people is having no effect on your attitude, heart, or service towards others- seek help fast. You may be a chronic IDS sufferer.
Don’t take this lightly. Already, millions of people around the world have been identified as having symptoms of IDS. It has destroyed friendships, ruined marriages, derailed careers, and lost souls. The trickiest part about identifying the presence of IDS is that the afflicted person, having become familiar with so much scripture, knows how he or she should be behaving. This leads to effective masking, as the person with IDS “fakes” the correct behaviors to cover up for his or her lack of a growing heart. Bad attitudes are hidden under false smiles; anger and jealousy are shrouded in an artificially spiritual attitude; selfishness and pity are positioned behind a platitude of positive sayings and cryptic one-liners.
Beware of the sufferers of IDS. Such people are among the most self-deceived of our species. They think by doing the right things they are becoming the right person. They mistake deeds for development, actions for intent, and works for heart. In short, they think by acting better they actually have become better.
Should you encounter sufferers of IDS; administer prayer immediately. Although the serious debilitating effects of IDS can explain their behavior, it will never be acceptable. Get them to see their Savior immediately. Apply heavy doses of tough love and an insistence upon a change that takes place deep inside, at the heart level, spiritually. Nothing less has ever been found to work.
-Jeremy "Tigger" Vass