I am often told that I am too hard on myself and I know I am not alone. Having been raised in a home where learning by making mistakes was not accepted, I was expected to be perfect. Even after we leave our childhood home, we continue to impose our parental judgements onto ourselves. Listen to your self-talk. Is it critical? Do we also hold others to our standards and quietly criticize them if they fail? The Bible speaks about not judging others. It wasn’t until I was in my late fifties before I understood the scriptures about God’s grace. My attempts at being perfect don’t earn me His love. Ephesians 2:8 says “ For by grace you have been saved through faith; and this is not of yourselves, it is a gift of God.” Trying to be perfect is not what God requires. He knew we would fall short and so Jesus, the only perfect One, came to take our sins onto Himself. Having a revelation of this truth gives absolute freedom. We no longer need to hold ourselves in contempt for failing, but instead, thank Him for forgiving us and setting us free from being driven to perform. It is faith in what Jesus did and trusting that God is molding us into His likeness that pleases God. All we need to do is continue to focus on Him, surrender to the process and trust Him. If we continue to fix our eyes and thoughts on our failures, that is where we will tend to go.
I pray for countless people who come for prayer about a situation and then tell all the reasons why there is no solution. We need to be open to the belief that somehow God can break through the obstacles and make a way. Encouraging people to receive the answer by faith is essential. Like the man in the Bible said “ I do believe; help my unbelief.” Mark 9:24
For example, we may receive a hopeless diagnosis from a doctor. Having been in the medical field, I realize that these are their best guess based on their experiences. But God is the Great Physician and has the final say. Jesus paid the price for our healing when he received the lashes right before He went on the cross. Isaiah prophesied about this in chapter 53:5-6.
We need to agree with those words and declare “ by His wounds, we are healed.”
Faith doesn’t come easily or quickly. It takes time and experience with God to come to know that He is not judging or condemning us. He is good. He loves us. We will have tests of our faith as that is the only way to grow us. Many times I felt as though I was free falling without a parachute. Everything in me wanted to find a place of safety, security and normalcy. But then, God came through and showed me His faithfulness.
I love the story of Joseph in Genesis 37-50. He was sold into slavery by his brothers and went through many trials, but God used it all for good in the end. Joseph eventually could see that his brothers act was meant for evil, but God meant it for good. He kept His eyes on God and trusted Him through all the confusing, dark times.
Be encouraged dear readers. Speak kindly over yourselves. Don’t agree with the condemning, accusing thoughts of our enemy, the devil. Only agree with what God says about us. We are His beloved sons and daughters. He wants us to be blessed. We are loved.
Respectfully submitted July 7, 2021
Wendy Arelis ( W. Veronica Lisare)
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