October 16, 2017
“No, in all these things we are more than conquerors through him who loved us. For I am convinced that neither death nor life, neither angels nor demons, neither the present nor the future, nor any powers, neither height nor depth, nor anything else in all creation, will be able to separate us from the love of God that is in Christ Jesus our Lord.” Romans 8:37‑39 (NIV)
Everyone has assumptions about life.
Many are useful and constructive. We know the sun will rise and set each day. We assume storms will pass, and food is available.
Some assumptions, however, are toxic. Even worse, they are contrary to the truth. Unhealthy assumptions include false thoughts like these:
I’m unworthy. I don’t deserve to have good things happen to me.
People abandon me.
When people come to know the real me, they leave.
It’s all my fault. I’m to blame for every bad thing that happens to me.
No one has my back, which makes me vulnerable.
Something bad is going to happen.
The world feels dangerous.
Many false beliefs were formed in the early years of our lives when we did not have the ability to challenge them. So their roots run deep, and such false assumptions create an anxiety-ridden life.
God’s solution? Truth. Face worries with truth. Take “captive every thought to make it obedient to Christ” (2 Corinthians 10:5b, NIV). One way to do this is to correct faulty thinking with accurate thoughts:
I matter to God. He made me, knows me and has a plan for my life.
I am worthy of love. I’m not perfect, but I have abilities and God-given gifts.
I’m not responsible for all the bad things. I’ve made mistakes, but I am learning and growing, and, most of all, I am forgiven by God.
I’m protected. It is a dangerous world, but I serve a mighty God who knows and loves me.
Listen to yourself. Monitor your beliefs about yourself, about God and about the world. Don’t allow false assumptions to take up any space in your mind. Immediately treat them with truth.
I’m either my own worst critic or greatest cheerleader. Either I tear myself down or build myself up. The words I say can usher in fear or faith. I’ve learned to ask: Are you against you? Or are you for you?
The truth is, God is for you. He has cast His vote. In His opinion you’re worth the death of His Son. You are valuable, purposeful and important. “Do not fear, for I have redeemed you; I have summoned you by name; you are mine” (Isaiah 43:1b, NIV).
If God is for you, shouldn’t you be for you? I’ve learned it doesn’t make sense to be against myself if God isn’t. Calling myself dumb, ugly or poor … saying there is no solution, hope or promise in life. If I decide I have no talents, friends or future … these words have power.
Saying something often enough can become my version of the truth! Those offhand negative remarks aren’t harmless; they are toxic. They actually agree with the devil. They give him a foothold. “The soothing tongue is a tree of life, but a perverse tongue crushes the spirit” (Proverbs 15:4, NIV).
Hold fast to the promises of Scripture and speak truth. The apostle Paul modeled this for us in today’s key verse: “No, in all these things we are more than conquerors through him who loved us. For I am convinced that neither death nor life, neither angels nor demons, neither the present nor the future, nor any powers, neither height nor depth, nor anything else in all creation, will be able to separate us from the love of God that is in Christ Jesus our Lord” (Romans 8:37-39).
Be for you! God is.
Lord, deconstruct the lies I believe about myself, about the world and about You. Replace those lies with the truth of Your love and care. Help me get out of the way. Please re-create my perspective so that truth reigns and guides my beliefs, decisions and actions. In Jesus’ Name, Amen.
TRUTH FOR TODAY:
Luke 12:24-26, “Consider the ravens: They do not sow or reap, they have no storeroom or barn; yet God feeds them. And how much more valuable you are than birds! Who of you by worrying can add a single hour to your life? Since you cannot do this very little thing, why do you worry about the rest?” (NIV)
It’s hard to find peace in a world that causes us so much worry ... How do we find calm when we’re dealing with financial issues, broken marriages, unruly kids or other uncertain circumstances? Learn practical, biblical ways to break free from your biggest anxieties in our upcoming Online Bible Study of Anxious for Nothing: Finding Calm in a Chaotic World by Max Lucado. Sign up for free today!
Make sure to follow Max on Facebook for daily encouragement.
REFLECT AND RESPOND:
What is one lie about yourself that you have believed lately? Where do you think this thought comes from? What practical step can you take this week to diminish its place in your life, mind and heart?
Personalize today’s key verse of Romans 8:37-39. Insert the sources of anxiety that come your way.
© 2017 by Max Lucado. All rights reserved.
Originally published Monday, 16 October 2017.