I started reading Max Lucado’s new book, “You’ll Get Through This”. In the beginning he is reminding us about the story of Joseph and how he got thrown into the pit. I know that pit. I have been there. The pit of depression, the pit of despair, the pit of betrayal, the pit of abandonment, the pit of poverty, etc. I’ll bet you have been there too. Stuck in a pit and can’t climb out by yourself. Feeling like you are helpless and hopeless.
One of the things Max said about Joseph was:
“What do you have that you cannot lose?” He still had God’s call on his heart.
We forget this on the road to Egypt. Forgotten destinies litter the landscape like carcasses.
We redefine ourselves according to our catastrophes.
“I am the divorcee, the addict, the bankrupt business person, the kid with the disability, or the man with the scar.” We settle for a small destiny: to make money, make friends, make a name, make muscle, or make love with anyone and everyone.
Determine not to make this mistake. Think you have lost it all: You Haven’t.
“God’s gifts and God’s call are under full warranty – never canceled, never rescinded (Rom 11:29 MSG). Hear and Heed Yours.
Source: You’ll Get Through This, by Max Lucado, p. 18
And then, more manna for my day. Yesterday I read something on FB that made me stop and think.
“People who are hard on themselves cannot forgive themselves for the mistakes they’ve made in the past. Sadly, they end up punishing themselves, whether they know it or not.
Beloved, release your failings to Jesus today. Receive His gift of no condemnation and stop blaming yourself for the things that have happened in the past. If God has forgiven you, you ought to forgive yourself too!
Receive God’s complete forgiveness! This is the 3rd key of The Power of Right Believing.
OUCH, OUCH, OUCH! Dang, that sword is sharp!
So, in theory, my punishing myself and beating myself up for all my past mistakes was a self-fulfilling prophecy. I was not, nor am I perfect, even though I tried. (ALL have sinned and fallen short of the glory of God). And my bad attitude would keep growing until I forgave myself. I was holding onto this false sense of reality – a false sense of who I thought I was – And I defined myself by my catastrophes.
Hi my name is Diana and I AM a _________. Fill in the blank. Who should I be today? We do tend to be chameleons too in order to hide and please everyone else. Well, I did.
For example, I thought I deserved to be punished, as that is what the ‘Abusers’ said. So even after I left and they weren’t around, I would punish myself. You know, those ‘voices’ in your head – that play even after the person is gone. Look in the mirror and call yourself ugly, fat, dumb, stupid…Old thought patterns and old beliefs – that had clouded my vision and needed to be kicked out. They are not true!
Now I see why God says to renew my mind daily and take every thought captive. I don’t have to act on every thought. I don’t even have to believe every thought.
Now I am not saying I have it all figured out. By no means, but I am pressing forward, forgetting the past and those things – to keep my eyes on the Prize – and go on.
“The main trouble with despair is that it is self-fulfilling. People who fear the worst tend to invite it. Heads that are down can’t scan the horizon for new openings. Bursts of energy do not spring from a spirit of defeat. Ultimately, helplessness leads to hopelessness.” —Norman Cousins
I don’t know if this makes any sense to you, but to me it helped me want to renew my mind with more of God’s Word. God says we are forgiven – I think I’ll accept that today. God already has, all my sins and shortcomings are as far as the East is from the West, so why did I keep holding onto them and reminding Him? And if Despair and Hopelessness are self-fulfilling, I think I will divorce those feelings too!
So what do you have that you cannot lose?