I’ve never given up anything for the Lenten Season…I’m not sure why. Maybe because I haven’t fully embraced the mission of its purpose. And I should. I know I should. But I think much of what people give up for God, is in some way, not enough. Maybe I have always believed there is nothing I could possibly give up for God that would be enough. There’s no sacrifice big enough to cover the grace He pours onto me. If I were to try, I am destined to fail.
I realize now, that this very thought is what I should ultimately surrender in my Lenten Sacrifice.
I will give up the lies.
The lies I keep believing over and over again…
If we are to give something up that will ultimately draw us closer to Christ, then the negative thoughts that steer me away from my God are what I choose to sacrifice. They have become habits of harsh words that dismiss His love and build barriers that shadow His light.
I can’t think of anything more damaging to my relationship with Jesus. I can’t think of anything more potent than the power of shame. He gave His life for me and I will give my life back to Him and speak truth over those lies.
I will let go of every shame-filled thought, every cruel condemnation, every vicious opinion…
Every word that goes against what God declares is true- for they are all lies.
The lies that keep us from God seep into our thoughts like a rusty pipe draining fermented stinky sewage…drop by drop, it saturates our hearts and severs the heavenly tie that bonds the Almighty with the fallen. The enemy is victorious in his fight over and over again.
Because we believe the lies satan sells.
What are yours?
“I’m not suitable for church.”
“Christian people are so pushy and judgmental, their God must be too.”
“I just don’t deserve God’s Love.”
“I am so far gone, God can’t save me from this mess.”
“I’m too angry, too hurt and God doesn’t understand.”
“Another fail, how dare I ask for His Grace again?”
“If all these bad things happen to me, there must not be a loving God.”
“I hate where I’m at right now in my life, so why reach out to God?”
“God hasn’t answered my prayers, He just doesn’t care.”
“How can God love someone like me?”
“I’ll never be able to fit into those Christian circles.”
“God isn’t for me, because there is no way I can meet all His requirements.”
“I’d rather do something tangible than pray to a silent God.”
“I’ll never pray because I see so many people who do and their lives still suck.”
“That church is full of some rude people, I’ve decided it’s not worth going.”
“The Bible seems so hard to understand, so why even try to read it?”
“There is NO WAY I could ever be a good Christian. I am not at all like them.”
And God’s heart is broken.
Because His Truth gets buried in such deception.
And His Love is churned into lawful condition.
But oh, friends.
His truth is this:
Our God does not hand-pick people to pour out His grace- He chooses us ALL. Every single human being is LOVED by our Almighty Creator. God wants nothing more than to wrap His merciful and loving arms around us and scoop us into His Kingdom.
He wants the very best for you and your life and He knows you better than you know yourself. People are all flawed, but God is not. And in His merciful way, He gives us our will: We can step toward Him or walk away.
I pray you chose HIM today.
No matter our flaws, our shame, and our messy, sin-soaked lives… He died for us anyway.
He’s reaching for you now.
What will you do?
Believe the lies or trust His Truth? Stay in the darkness or step into His light? Turn away from His love or fall right into it?
I can’t help but wonder how many times God has reached out for each one of us…
Only to be denied by lies…
What lies do you believe? Will you give them up too?
I hope and pray that you do.
Through him all things were made; without him, nothing was made that has been made. In him was life, and that life was the light of all mankind. The light shines in the darkness, and the darkness has not overcome it. ~ John 1:3-5
But you, Lord, are a compassionate and gracious God,
slow to anger, abounding in love and faithfulness. ~ Psalm 86:15