I may have mentioned before that I’ve been reading the devotional, “Jesus Calling”. It is an exceptional book, and I highly recommend it. The daily devotionals are short but very powerful. Here is some of what I read over the weekend.
“Do not be discouraged by the difficulty of keeping your focus on Me. I know that your heart’s desire is to be aware of My Presence continually. This is a lofty goal; you aim toward it but never fully achieve it in this life. Don’t let feelings of failure weigh you down. Instead, try to see yourself as I see you. First of all, I am delighted by your deep desire to walk closely with Me through your life. I am pleased each time you initiate communication with Me. In addition, I notice the progress you have made since you first resolved to live in My Presence.”
I believe the biggest factor that keeps us from a life following God’s plan is that we don’t feel that we are good enough. Why would God care about someone who makes mistakes and has terrible skeletons from the past? Shouldn’t we be perfect to follow Him? We can’t possibly be perfect and toe the line we think we need to follow.
The world would have us believe that a rigid, flawless life, void of fun and joy is what Christianity is about. (Who would want that?) Unfortunately that message is reinforced through the media every time some crazy, overly judgmental, so-called ‘Christian’ spews distorted truths about Christian beliefs.
I grew up in a church that painted a stern picture of how my walk with God should look. After my parents divorced, I stopped going to church. I lived a very worldly life as a teenager and young adult and after seven years of marriage, almost divorced my husband.
I delayed seeking God’s help for quite some time because I didn’t want to give up the “fun” in my life. I thought you had to be prim and proper and walk a very fine line in order to follow God. How wrong I was! Having God involved in all I do has made for a much better, a much more joyful life, and a completely different idea of what fun is.
We gather some of our great misconceptions about Christianity every time we enter our own church buildings. Church people tend to put on their “church face” and come off as wonderful, perfect Christians. I would dare to say that there is not one person in any congregation who could say, “My life is perfect!” We all have struggles which only seem to be multiplying in the crazy world we live today. So why are we so afraid to share our doubts and fears with the people who supposedly care about us the most? (Our church family.)
Most of us are insecure and feel unworthy a lot of the time - especially when it comes to our faith. It takes one testimony from someone sharing the miracle God has done in his or her life for us to take a few steps backwards and question our own faith. Maybe we aren’t good enough to follow God. Maybe we don’t have what it takes. Is that why we don't experience miracles like the testimonies we hear? If you continually compare your life walk to someone else’s, especially a leader at church, you will never feel worthy enough. (Remind yourself, you only hear the wonderful aspects of their Christian walk; you don’t know what goes on behind their closed doors at home.)
We often take this attitude into our marriages. Maybe we don’t feel confident enough to voice our opinions, or maybe our insecurities come out in a barrage of hurtful words that we don’t really mean. Whatever it may be, our feelings of unworthiness can negatively affect our marriage relationship and filter through into every aspect of our lives.
More from “Jesus Calling”:
“When you realize that your mind has wandered away from Me, don’t be alarmed or surprised. You live in a world that has been rigged to distract you. Each time you plow your way through the massive distractions to communicate with Me, you achieve a victory. Rejoice in these tiny triumphs, and they will increasingly light up your days.” Romans 8:33-34; Hebrews 4:14-16
We tend to make judgments of ourselves according to human thought, not what God would know about us. It takes a lot of work and focus to keep your eyes on God and His plan for your life, not to mention that there is an enemy out there (the devil) who doesn’t want you to succeed in God’s will. Add that on top of our worldly distractions, and it’s no wonder many Christians fall away from their faith. We think there is something wrong with us – we don’t have enough faith to reach the goal that God has set – so we stop pursuing it.
Hebrews 4:14-16, “Seeing then that we have a great High Priest who has passed through the heavens, Jesus the Son of God, let us hold fast our confession. For we do not have a High Priest who cannot sympathize with our weaknesses, but was in all points tempted as we are, yet without sin. Let us therefore come boldly to the throne of grace that we may obtain mercy and find grace to help in time of need.”
We are all children of God, and He cares for each and every one of us. If your insecurities prohibit you from seeking His help, you will miss out on the endless mercy and grace He desires to give you.
Would you reject your own children when they make mistakes or behave in an inappropriate manner? Neither would God reject you – one of His children.