Don’t believe everything you think.
The battle between good and evil is often lost in the simple act of allowing an unconsidered conclusion to govern your approach to a situation instead of focusing your attention on discovering God’s direction, intention, or will for your life in that moment and persisting in accomplishing it even when it seems out of reach.
Here is the basic fact — the enemy will use the truth as a mechanism to build a lie.
“You failed the last time you tried to quit smoking. So don’t bother trying again.”
“You were abused as a child. That explains why you have a temper now. It’s fine. It’s just who you are.”
“You’re hungry, that’s why you are in a bad mood. No one could expect you to be positive and can do right now. Wait until after lunch, then maybe you’ll feel better and can be productive then.”
“You aren’t that kind of person. No one expects this from you. You can’t change who you are.”
In each of these statements the initial premise is correct. Maybe you did fail the last time you quit smoking, that’s why you’re trying to quit again. Maybe you were abused as a child and it gave you a temper, that’s why you lash out at people and then wish you hadn’t. Maybe you do experience negative emotions when you are hungry, that’s why you never get much done at work before two or three in the afternoon. Maybe you are in need of a change and haven’t ever made a significant improvement before, so no one expects you to do better, that’s why there’s no one pushing you to improve yourself right now.
The fact is, though, none of the follow-on conclusions in those statements are correct. Just because you have failed before, doesn’t mean you are going to fail again. Just because you have a temper, doesn’t mean that is how you have to be. Just because you aren’t currently experiencing positive emotions doesn’t mean you should accept that input as your own attitude and let it bring you to halt or cause you to make poor choices. Just because you haven’t been a positive, can-do, faithful, empowered, capable, and willing person, doesn’t mean you can’t start that change in your life today.
Jesus didn’t call it being born again lightly. He meant it. Nothing in your past need hold you back from discovering everything that God has in store for you.
You are forgiven as soon as you ask. As soon as you decide. As soon as you want. As soon as you choose to accept the life changing power of Jesus Christ into your life, you can be created new. From the ground up. Renovated. Renewed. Rebuilt. With a fresh look, a new design, a stronger frame, a cleaner look, a better approach, a clearer vision, fully reconstructed to overcome the life you lived before and fulfill the life that God designed you to receive.
Your relationships, connections, attitudes, and opportunities can be opened to a new level of success, intimacy, peace, joy, satisfaction, contentment, accomplishment, abundance, and prosperity.
The key is to realize the truth about the lies that are holding you back from living your best life now.
The challenge is to separate the truth of the premise from the error of the conclusion.
When Jesus first met Simon, he was a fisherman. He had a nice partnership with some other fellows, a couple of boats, and he was working the sea of Galilee to make what was probably a fine living selling fish for others to eat. But Simon had a past. The Bible doesn’t tell us exactly what it was, but when he first meets Jesus he tells Him,
“Oh, Lord, please leave me — I’m too much of a sinner to be around you.” – Luke 5 (NLT)
The premise was accurate, he was a sinner. But the conclusion was incorrect, and so Jesus overcomes his objection,
“Don’t be afraid! From now on you’ll be fishing for people!” – Luke 5 (NLT)
Sometimes, you can be your own worst enemy. If it had been up to Simon, he would have disqualified himself from being able to follow Jesus because he wasn’t righteous. He wasn’t good enough. He knew he was weak and sinful. He knew he had a past, that he had made mistakes, and that Jesus could do better. But Jesus didn’t pause. Jesus didn’t pass him over. Jesus didn’t draw the same flawed conclusion that Simon did. Jesus looked at Simon and what He saw was a rock in the making. Jesus looked past his history, past his mistakes, past his own misconceptions about who he was and what he was capable of.
“Then Andrew brought Simon to meet Jesus. Looking intently at Simon, Jesus said, ‘You are Simon, the son of John — but you will be called Rock’ (which translates as Peter ).” – John 1 (NLT)
Jesus was ready to make Simon into the man he wanted to be, but had never considered that he could be. Jesus pushed through the errors, past the mistakes, over the misconceptions, into the very heart of who Simon was, and opened him up to live a life that he had never even dreamed of.
It is the same with you.
Jesus is calling.
“Come. Follow me. I will make you new. Learn from me. Accept that your conception of what is possible can be expanded. Accept that your past doesn’t define you and you’re ready for a change. And I will bless you, heal you, restore you, and give you a new life that is more abundant, more powerful, and more in every respect than you have ever considered possible. No matter how big you’ve dreamed, my dreams for you are bigger. I am going to make you into more than you have imagined. You are a person of destiny. You are who I want. You are who I choose. Get ready for a break out. Get ready for a change. Get ready to get moving. And don’t let the lies stop you. You may have come from a bad place. You may have had bad parents or a bad experience growing up. Your life may have turned out badly. Your choices may have boxed you in or held you down. But all of that stops today. You are gifted. You are chosen. You are empowered. And from this day forward, you are mine. You may have a poor natural inheritance, but now you are going to start receiving my super-natural inheritance. You may have bad genetics or a bad experience coming from your parents, but now you are my child. You may have gotten to a dead end, lost your way, or made bad choices, but now, starting today, you follow me.“
God created you on purpose for a purpose. You are a person of destiny and a child of God. You are where you are today and God is okay with that because He can take you from wherever you are and bring you into the life that He has in store for you. So don’t believe the lies. Even if they are premised with facts, they are still lies. The enemy may have gotten the first word, but God is going to get the last.
You aren’t everything you think you are, you are so much more! God is ready to reach into your life and make all things new. God is ready to work with you, for who you, with what you are, and through where you’ve been, to bring about a powerful change, not just for you, but for the world that surrounds you. You are called. You are chosen. That is the truth. Don’t let the enemy persuade you that you aren’t exactly what God is looking for. You are His own child. You have His royal blood flowing through your veins and His Divine destiny stretching out before you.
You were built with today in mind.
Take the limits off your expectations today, and start living the best life that God has in store for you right now.