“You’re a failure.”
“You can’t do it.”
“You are never enough.”
Anyone else familiar with these internally shouted slogans that dog the heels of my best spiritual efforts?
I have struggled with anger and fear related to these lies for so many years, and I want to share with you something I have learned through that struggle. Trust me as you read this next sentence:
Those lies are all true.
Stick with me for a minute and let me explain. I am NOT saying you are worthless, hopeless, and you might as well quit. I am saying that the enemy deals in half-truths and every single one of those lies is a half truth. They are true, but they are only half the picture.
Listen as I complete the pictures:
“You’re a failure, a person who often doesn’t get it right and cannot ever measure up to God’s standards. But Christ succeeded where you fail so that every time you fail, God doesn’t hold it against you. He uses it to display His glory and shape you more into the person He has created you to be.”
“You can’t do this. Girl, you can’t even draw your next breath without God upholding the universe, the atoms in the atmosphere, and your own bodily systems. There is no way you can handle the big stuff. But you aren’t alone. What you can’t do, He can. He’ll take care of everything you are unable to accomplish, and He will enable you to do everything He asks that you do.”
“You are never enough. But, that’s because you weren’t ever meant to be. Christ is Enough. His blood paid the price for all of your sins. His life fulfilled every letter of the law. His Spirit in you will strengthen you to accomplish everything He calls you to do, and what He calls you to do is all you need to put on your to-do list. And it’s probably a whole less than you think and demand of yourself. For you, doing enough is depending on Him who is Enough to give you the grace to do the next right thing.”
See what I mean? The whole picture is a healing truth in place of a cutting lie.
We like to fight these lies with further lies of the enemy: “You’ll be a success if you only keep trying!” “You got this, girl! You can do whatever you put your mind to.” “You are enough.”
While those phrases mean well, they only make matters worse because they put the pressure back on you. The truth, by comparison, can make you weightless.
Jesus said: “…My yoke is easy and My burden is light.””
Matthew 11:30 HCSB
God says: “Do not fear, for I am with you; do not be afraid, for I am your God. I will strengthen you; I will help you; I will hold on to you with My righteous right hand. Be sure that all who are enraged against you will be ashamed and disgraced; those who contend with you will become as nothing and will perish. You will look for those who contend with you, but you will not find them. Those who war against you will become absolutely nothing. For I, Yahweh your God, hold your right hand and say to you: Do not fear, I will help you.”
Isaiah 41:10-13 HCSB
Sister-in-Christ, will you let the truth of God’s enoughness set you free from your own crushing standards?