HEARTLIGHTSingle... Not Alone







The Baby Moses Syndrome
by Cary Branscum

    Have you ever just let bills stack up, as you say to yourself; “Oh well, they’ll get paid somehow.” Yet you have no plan to pay them off. All the while, deep down inside somewhere, there is a little voice that tells you someday you’ll have to face the music.

    We all have a handy little mental tool called a “defense mechanism.” These are useful, often unconscious, techniques that help cushion the blow of reality. For instance, the class clown may be masking inner insecurity, while the swaggering macho dude may be feel threatened and alone. So why be concerned with these helpful cushions?

    As adults, we need to take care of ourselves while not avoiding reality and imposing on others. Defense mechanisms can work too well and keep us from facing the things we need to face in our lives. Instead of squarely dealing with the real issues in our lives, we have what I call the Baby Moses syndrome. Do you remember when the baby Moses was set adrift on the Nile River in Egypt in a floating basket? Well, we can also be a basket case and in de’nial.

    If we don’t face the truth that confronts us in life, we only deceive ourselves, and hurt others. Norma Desmond used “to be somebody” as an actress in the classic black and white film “Sunset Boulevard” Someone recognized her as a star who “used to be big.” Her response: “I am big, it’s the pictures that got small.” She was deceiving herself. She was living in yesterday and denying the reality of today.

    What realities, what truths do you need to face in your life? When you feel ready to tackle reality, you might want to start by asking yourself these questions:

  • Am I really trusting in God, or do I try to trust Him while holding onto sin in my life?

  • What bad, negative, hurtful influences am I allowing to continue in my life because I deny them and refuse to deal with them?

  • Who do I need to be lovingly honest with, and when do I plan to start being lovingly honest with them?

  • Who is the person I truly want to be, and how can I start becoming that person God intended me to be?

  • Do I feel any “sense of call” from God, and what am I doing to follow it?

  • What area of my life (spiritual, physical, social, financial, emotional) do I just need to start dealing with today?

    These are not easy questions. I am not suggesting you simply jump into answering these questions without regard to consequences. Sometimes defense mechanisms can help us deal with reality a bit at a time. But don’t be lulled into going to sleep in your basket as the waters of De’Nial pour in.


HEARTLIGHT(R) Magazine is a ministry of loving Christians and the Westover Hills church of Christ.
Edited by Phil Ware and Paul Lee.
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Article copyright © 1998, Cary Branscum. Used by permission.
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