Lies That I Tell Myself
If you've ever been in small group setting or bible study, you've probably done some variation of highs/lows, happies/crappies, roses/thorns, etc.
Sometimes my "lows" sound more like: Welcome to another segment called "LIES THAT I TELL MYSELF."
About a year ago, I realized that when it was time to confess my lows of the week, as soon as I said them aloud, I recognized how often it tied into some negative thought I had about myself or my circumstances. By the time I was done saying it, I would think to myself, "wait...that's a lie."
My low for one week: "I have so much to do, and I'm just so busy. I haven't been sleeping. I'm overwhelmed, and I just don't think I can get anything done."
^LIE THAT I TELL MYSELF.
Because by the end of saying that, I would remember God's truth on the matter. In this case, the true response is that God has me in His righteous right hand. I don't need to fear. (Isaiah 41:10).
Here's a list of a few more common "Lies That I Tell Myself":
I am conditionally loved. If I mess up, I will stop being loved. (This applies to both human and Godly love). I think if I miss up far too many times, love will eventually wear out.
Grace is not immediate. Often, if I ask God for forgiveness over something, I continue to feel terrible for days- sometimes weeks.
I'm not a good leader.
My anxiety has its grip on me. Once I start feeling overwhelmingly anxious or sad, there's no going back.
I'm far too emotional, and it is wrong to cry and feel pain when someone else does.
You might think, "well, obviously those are lies." However, in different seasons of our lives, when we're living smack in the middle of the lie, we don't often see it as such. It's important to take some time to step back and recognize "Lies That I Tell Myself."
BUT, if I'm going to have a segment called "Lies That I Tell Myself," I need to follow that up with an infinitely better segment called "TRUTH".
Here's the TRUTH response to those lies I mentioned:
1. "Love is patient and kind; love does not envy or boast; it is not arrogant or rude. It does not insist on its own way; it is not irritable or resentful; it does not rejoice at wrongdoing, but rejoices with the truth. Love bears all things, believes all things, hopes all things, endures all things. Love never ends. As for prophecies, they will pass away; as for tongues, they will cease; as for knowledge, it will pass away." -1 Corinthians 13:4-8.
"God is love." -1 John 4:16
I love to go back through that verse in 1 Corinthians and replace "love" with "God." The truth is, God's love is truly and absolutely unconditional. He gave 100% of His life for us. I should not live in fear that my faults are ever going to exhaust that. I should also not live in fear of failing humans. God's love surpasses all.
"There is no fear in love, but perfect love casts out fear." -1 John 4:18
2. Grace is like an ocean. I'm selling grace short if I don't believe it sweeps in to wash me clean. It's as if grace is trying to wash over me like a mighty wave, and I'm still gripping on to the shoreline.
"The Lord is not slow to fulfill his promise as some count slowness, but is patient toward you, not wishing that any should perish, but that all should reach repentance." -2 Peter 3:9
He does not want me to perish! I need to pray this: "Wash me thoroughly from my iniquity, and cleanse me from my sin!"-Psalm 51:2 and believe that His grace will WASH over me and cleanse me.
3. I used to be terrified of the term "leader", until I realized, leadership is not at all about me or my title. It's about the Lord and shepherding others into a better relationship with Him and with each other.
This is the verse I came across before taking on a leadership position: "Jesus said to them again, “Peace be with you. As the Father has sent me, even so I am sending you.” -John 20:21
Peace be with you.
I should never let fear get in the way of where the Lord is sending me. He has commanded peace on my side. When the Lord says, "Take heart; it is I. Do not be afraid." and He gives me a "Come." just like He did to Peter on the water, I have to keep my eyes on Him- and NOT my wobbly walking on the water.
"The light shines in the darkness, and the darkness has not overcome it." -John 1:5
The past year was rough. Sometimes I'd sit in my living room feeling overwhelmed, and I would RUN to my room, grab my bible, and cry out to the Lord.
"God, I am sad, anxious and overwhelmed. Please see me. Please deliver me. Bring some words of comfort."
In the past few months, I made a change to that plea.
"God, I DON'T want to feel sad and anxious. I don't HAVE to feel this way. You are God and you are good. Please see me. Please deliver me. Bring some words of comfort."
For me, it was an absolute change. I changed my own definition of myself into a statement of faith, proclaiming God's power over my struggle. I need to trust that the Lord WILL lift me up from the deepest pit. He WILL make my steps secure.
“I waited patiently for the Lord; he inclined to me and heard my cry. He drew me up from the pit of destruction, out of the miry bog, and set my feet upon a rock, making my steps secure. He put a new song in my mouth, a song of praise to our God. Many will see and fear, and put their trust in the Lord.” -Psalm 40:1-3
Last, but certainly not least in Truths:
5. "Jesus Wept."- John 11:35
Sometimes we really do need to voice our struggles aloud in order to say, "Hey, that's a lie I'm telling myself." And if we can't, that's where the Body of Christ can sweep in to remind us what God really says about who we are.
The top photograph was taken at Pine Cove Outback (G'Day) where on one special night every week this past summer, we had GIRL'S NIGHT. After a club talk, we got to talk with our campers about sin and struggles we were all still holding on to. Then, we got to live out all of our Tangled dreams by writing those things on paper lanterns and releasing them into the sky. It was a stunning visual reminder to let go of sin and identities we built up for ourselves.
My heart continually prays I would remember to release the lies I feed myself.
I pray I remember to step back and watch the beauty that comes from letting go.
What lies are you holding on to?