For as much as I want to deny it, I can’t deny the fact that I believe lies about myself.
I read a recent article my bishop wrote about faith and works. It was good, and I affirm what he wrote to be worthwhile. I go through periods in my life that whenever I hear or read authority figures state what needs to be happening and what is not being done, I take it personally. Some may say that I’m simply convicted of sloth and sin. I say that the feelings I have are not godly sorrow but painful shame.
The shame is not based in reality but based in words and spiritual impressions of condemnation. I know enough to say that condemnation is not birthed from the goodness of God in Christ. I, also, know that many in the church believe that what I just declared is simply wrong.
Well, I know what godly sorrow feels like in my spirit, and I’m growing more soberly familiar with what condemnation feels like. I use to affirm it and allow it to enslave me in pain and fear and use religious dysfunction to permit condemnation to have it’s way in me, usually through tactics of fear and shame. This wouldn’t lose its grip on me until several days had passed.
I’ve believed lies about myself for a long time. I’m tired of such a belief system that justifies shame and fear. I have decided to be more intentional in being aware of when these feelings arrive, and to state that condemnation is not from my Father (sorry if you disagree – maybe you need to find another blog). I have, also, decided to ask my Father to bring to me godly sorrow for particular sins that lie unaddressed so that I can confess them as sin and know anew Godly forgiveness in mercy and grace.
The lies stem from my belief that God is not happy with me and, in fact, is mad at me for not doing all that He requires. I’ve preached regularly that God is not angry with us. He simply wants us to believe it and to act accordingly. For those that read this and feel a bit betrayed because I preach what I’m not believing for myself, please forgive me and pray for me. My heavenly Daddy is doing a work in me, and I am very thankful.
The truth is that my heavenly Daddy loves me, no matter what. I am created in the image of Daddy. Jesus was the model, and he died in my place getting what I desire so that I would receive what He deserved. I am the righteousness of God gifted in some things by the Spirit but not responsible for everything. I’m not responsible for everything, but I can do all things through Christ who strengthens me.
Lastly, where the Spirit of the Lord is there is freedom (2 Corinthians 3: 17). Freedom means I am free. Free means I am not enslaved in strongholds but free to be all that God is in me. Praise God. Pray for me.